Caritas in the Middle School In the last newsletter we highlighted the efforts of the Middle School to raise money for CARITAS. The idea of a personal pledge (whereby students and staff are invited to reflect upon their lives and make a pledge to make an active effort to assist others less fortunate) is a cornerstone of the CARITAS tradition and makes a real link with the season of Lent on the Religious Calendar. It would be great if parents could have a discussion with their children about Lent, Project Compassion and about the CARITAS Organisation. If every student and staff member donated even $2.00 we would raise nearly $800.00 alone from this idea. As part of the Caritas fundraising 9.4 will be having a cup cake, muffin and biscuit stall on March 28, so people can build up to the Caritas Ks and recover from the Athletics day…Please bring some money and support this venture.
Lockers and Laptops There continues to be an issue with students, particularly in Year 10, not locking their lockers. Unfortunately there has been a couple of issues lately in respect to students having their personal possessions meddled with by others. In particular we have had some real problems with students not securing their laptops. As of next week, any unsecured laptop will be confiscated and will only be returned to the student when their security is organised, meaning all students having locks on lockers and locking away their laptop during recess, lunch or any other time when their laptop is not being used or supervised. Please get a lock on your locker and use it!!
Aerosol Cans I have already made a number of requests for students not to use aerosol deodorant cans at school as they cause some students to have allergic reactions. Students are welcome to use ‘roll on’ deodorant sticks but please leave the aerosol at home!
We introduce to the community, the latest missionaries due to visit Santa Teresa this year. Congratulations to Emily Maher, Tamara Russo, Madeline Schmidt, Annie Brien, Mindi Suter, Monique Semmens, Matthew Spence, Mikaela Ellis and Maggie Snowdon. These very fortunate year ten students were successful in their application to attend the Santa Teresa Immersion Experience. The students are set to depart in September and in the meantime, they are looking forward to sharing community fundraising experiences with you all. Marisa Cudini, Social Justice Coordinator
In the last newsletter we touched upon the theme of opportunity which was the focus theme for Mrs Wendy Chuck and 9.2 when they recently presented the first Middle School Prayer Assembly. This theme is one that is worth revisiting in this newsletter item with a quick examination of the raft of opportunities with which students are presented at Galen. The following list is by no means prescriptive but it certainly serves to illustrate how every student has the chance to participate and make their mark during their time at Galen College: Art competitions and displays, whole school and junior school productions, sports carnivals and teams (there are literally dozens of these) Caritas, Social Justice, Maths and Science Competitions, prayer assemblies, whole school assemblies such as the Opening School Mass and the ANZAC Day Commemoration, assisting with social service organisations, school camps and excursions, immersion experiences such as Santa Theresa are amongst those activities that students are able to be part of during their time at Galen. Make the most of what is on offer!
Rebekah and Abbey make their Stage Debut! On Thursday March 1st two of our Year 9 students Rebekah Grincais and Abbey Waring will be making their debut on stage in Bendigo. Rebekah and Abbey have entered in the the ‘Melbourne International Comedy Festival Class Clowns’ competition. This competition has been running for seventeen years. As well as making their auditions on Thursday the two ladies will also participate in a two hour work shop being conducted by a professional comedian. We wish Rebekah and Abbey every success and look forward to hearing about their experiences.
A Few Words From James Bourke (Year 9 Coordinator) The Year 9 cohort have started the year in an excellent manner at Galen Catholic College. Hardworking and on-the-job, our Year 9 students have had a positive approach to their classes, extra-curricular activities, and school-life in Term 1; much to the delight of their teachers! All Year 9 classes are now in full swing with our students busily working on their set tasks and activities. Furthermore, our Year 9 Discovery students have been actively preparing for their Year 9 Bushwalk, eagerly awaiting their 2-day Alpine Experience, which will take place in the Bogong High Plains over the next 2 weeks. As student Interim reports are now only weeks away, I encourage all Year 9’s to approach their studies in a positive manner for the remaining weeks of the Term. Well done Year 9’s, and keep up the good work!
CARITAS in the Middle School We have now entered that part of the year where there is a real focus on Project Compassion and CARITAS. In the Middle School we have, in the past, conducted an activity where all students are invited to make a pledge whereby they make some sort of sacrifice in recognition of Lent but also as a way to personalize their commitment to the Project Compassion Theme. Students are given the opportunity to talk about their pledge or if they feel uncomfortable with this then they make a private pledge and then inwardly reflect upon this pledge. Towards the end of term we ask each student to make a gold coin donation to the CARITAS cause and this results in some significant fundraising across Middle School. On Feb 29th we were fortunate to be addressed by Fernando Pires. Fernando Pires was born in Dili Timor Leste and left in August 1975 because of the conflict. He grew up in Melbourne Australia. In 1999 Fernando returned to live and work in Timor Leste. He now works with Caritas Australia as Program Coordinator for the Peace Building and Community/Family Violence Prevention Program. During his address to the Galen Middle School Fernando was able to impress upon his audience his experiences as a refugee and the social issues that are so fundamental to the work of CARITAS. We thank Fernando for his time and his willingness to talk so openly about his life experiences and his work with CARITAS.
Research suggests that to reduce the high number of fatalities and serious crashes involving P-Plate drivers, a Learner needs to gain at least 120 hours driving practice as a mandatory requirement. This experience covers all types of conditions: wet, dry, day, night, country and city. Keys Please introduces some of the skills required for driving, and reinforces the messages of gaining practice ?(lots of practice) in all types of weather and on all road types. ??On Wednesday 7th March, trained facilitator Rob Allen, (from Vic Roads) will present an informative, interactive & educational talk to all Year 10s.
As is usually the case at the beginning of the year the first week has been a very busy time for students and staff. Thanks are extended to 9.2 and Mrs Wendy Chuck for conducting the first Middle School assembly in such a smooth and engaging manner. The theme chosen for this assembly was that of ‘Opportunity’. During their presentation the 9.2 students highlighted the vast areas of opportunity for all students at Galen. This theme of opportunity will be further explored in the next newsletter. Administrative/Management Items: Uniform has generally been excellent with the exception being students not wearing their hats when they are in the sun. This is something that requires attention and with a cooperative attitude from students and support from home it is hoped that we can achieve a much higher degree of compliance with the sunsmart policy. Key elements of this policy are outlined below: When in the sun students must wear the designated school uniform hat during lunchtime and recess during terms 1 and 4. (Students sitting in shaded areas do not have to wear their hat but must have the uniform hat in their possession.) ‘Catch Up’ classes have been introduced on a weekly basis in the Middle School. These classes are supervised and will be conducted each Friday providing students with the opportunity to catch up on study or homework or in some case allowing students to spend some reflective time in relation to how they can improve their performance at school.
Monday, February 6th saw the arrival and commencement of the Year 9 and 10, Middle School students. As is always the case on the first day of the year there are a wide range of expectations and reactions from both students and teachers. Its always great to get back and catch up with friends and colleagues but we also need to prepare for another year of working to our potential and making the most of what Galen College has to offer. A special welcome to new students in Years 9 and 10. We have introduced a buddy system to support the new students as they begin this next stage of their education at Galen. In upcoming newsletters we intend to supply a photo and a few words of introduction to all of the new enrolments in Years 9 and 10. A welcome is also extended to the Year 9 and 10 Homeroom Teachers and Year Level Coordinators who are as listed below: Year 9: Wendy Chuck, Kate Howard, Greg Matulich, Jacqui Pengelly, Christine Duff, Tegan McKeown and James Bourke (Coordinator). Year 10: Olga Byrne, Shannon Murphy, Alicia Howard, Betty Holdsworth, James Heath, Rob Parsons, Gretta Norden, Paul Benedetti and Liz Morrow (Coordinator). Day one was very busy. Lots of organisation, information and getting back into the routine of school. One of the initiatives at Galen this term will be in the form of ‘focus weeks’ where we encourage and promote student adherence to different school policies and processes. Uniform, punctuality, litter control are examples of the sort of issues that may become the topic of a focus week. The first of these focus weeks will take place shortly. Finally I would like to encourage all students to take advantage of the huge number of opportunities that are offered at Galen. Whether it be academic, sporting, leadership, theatre, music or social justice there is a huge array of opportunities of which students can take advantage and ensure that their time in the Middle School in 2012 is both rewarding and memorable.
In the middle of November, year nine students went on the second Adventure Camp to Mt. Buffalo. Most people were really looking forward to it because former students had reported it as being the best camp they ever went on – so it had a lot to live up to! Students got to participate in activities they thought they’d never do in their lives! Some were scary, others required strength, stamina or patience. The Adventure Camp tested our belief in ourselves, our peers and instructors and helped us to overcome fears and complete challenging activities. Adventure camp was GREAT! The activities and people there made it very enjoyable. There were a range of activities including: rock climbing, canoeing, underwater caving, abseiling and two separate environmental walks. They all were very fun to do, but abseiling pushed me a bit further than the others. It was a bit daunting looking over the high cliffs, but once you started to go down, it was exciting. The views were so amazing, and for many people it was a once in a lifetime experience. If I had the opportunity to do the camp again I would for sure! Ruby Gardner Russell Canoeing was one of the highlights of the camp. It was a great experience for many people to try something new. We canoed around Lake Catani with some hazards along the way, for some getting stuck in the reeds and for others getting wet. It was a excellent way to get to know people that we had not interacted with before. We learned some survival tactics including forming a raft and some of us enjoyed fishing whilst canoeing. It was a really fun experience. Bedelia Flanagan One of the activities we did on camp, was to go on an environmental walk. Although it didn’t sound as exciting as some of the other activities, most people said that it was very enjoyable. Most of the groups went for a walk up to The Hump, where there was a very good view of Mount Buffalo and the areas around it. It was one of the things I liked the most about camp and overall it was a great experience. Tamara Russo
I was part of the second group that went on camp. I think my favourite activity was the underwater caving. It was the only activity I was determined to do. Of course I was nervous. Once we were down under the rock formations, it was clear that this was not going to be easy. The group had to crawl under large boulders, up waterfalls and contort their bodies to fit through the cracks to reach our destination. I think for me the thrill from the danger made it exhilarating, followed by the sense of accomplishment. We felt once finished, made it for me, by far the best. The camp overall was a great experience and I would love to do it again. Eliza Pittaway
The Adventure Camp was an awesome experience. On our second night I chose to go on the Horn walk which was amazing! We walked for about fifteen minutes up to the horn where we stayed for forty-five minutes and watched the sun set over the mountain with a 360 degree view over the surrounding mountains and ovens valley. The walk down was interesting as hundreds of Bogong Moths came out to feast on little insects and a few of us ate them raw which was a very unique experience. The Horn walk was definitely one of my favourite activities on the camp and one I will remember for a very long time! Annie Brien We would like to sincerely thank all the students and staff who attended the 2011 Year 9 Adventure Camp, and who made it such a success. In particular, we would like to thank Mr Keith Willett for all his organisation leading up to the camp.
Parents and students of Year 10 are requested to read the following information in respect to Year 10 exams. As has been school policy in recent years there will be a formal Year 10 exam in each of the core subjects, Religious Education, English, Maths, Humanities and Science. Please read and note the exam timetable below. Some elective subjects will also run exams in normal timetabled double lessons in the week preceding the core subject exams. The exception to this is Italian which will run an exam in the same timetable as the core subjects. Over the next 2-3 weeks students will be briefed by their subject teachers as to what will be required for each exam. It is important that in the remaining time before exams are held that students spend study time revising content for each of the subjects in which they will be examined. Any queries or concerns in respect to Year 10 exams are to be directed to Keith Willett at school.
Ms Bromley’s Year 10 Drama students did an excellent job last week of performing ‘The Acharnians’ by Aristophanes (C. 447 – 385 BC). This unit of performance gives the students a direct appreciation of the 1st Golden Age of Theatre as well as an understanding of ancient times and cultures. Only 11 of Aristophanes plays survive. ‘The Acharnians’ is an anti-war comedy that pleads for peace, set in Athens during the great wars of Sparta. Living in peace is actively and comically compared to living in war time, particularly during the mocking scenes with the Ambassadors and Lamachus. Students who took part include: Damian Albertson, Harrison Berenger, Jesse Bowen, Courtney Dillow, Jared Hargreaves, Ben Jose, Sarah Lockwood, Mik- haila Lovett, Laura Mc Millan, Bridie Naughtin & Hazel Vaughan.
On Wednesday the 26th of Oct all Year 10 students were treated to guest speakers from various local health and safety agencies to promote the message of safe partying, being sexually healthy and looking after your mates. Deanne Hourigan from the Ovens and King Community Health Centre spoke to students about their sexual health. Robert Wright from NESAY reminded students about the risks involved in sending inappropriate text messages and safe social media use. Doctor Matt Byrne conducted an open forum where students could discuss health issues that related to them and Mark Staley from the Wangaratta Police chatted about standard drinks, safe partying and legal consequences related to underage drinking. We would like to thank these experts for sharing their precious time and knowledge with us and hope that this experience has helped our Year 10 students to use this information to make informed decisions about their health in the future.