They say that a week is a long time in politics…and they are right! What a confusing scene of discord we have witnessed as the U.S.A. has wrestled with itself over the presidential election, the seemingly eternal process finally coming to an unlikely denouement on Tuesday. At our distance, and with our relatively benign political climate, we watched on as an unapologetic populist defeated political aristocracy with a “shock and awe” campaign that has been emphatically rebranded as a “movement”.
It is not my place to comment on the politics of personality, or perhaps politics at all, from my privileged position as Principal of Cathedral; however, it is fact that the U.S.A. and Donald Trump’s victory have been hard to avoid in all forms of media of late, with last week’s crescendo of opinion permeating homes, offices and schools. If the adults looking on can rightfully feel confused, what of our young people? What have they seen through all of this, via the screaming headlines and inescapable reactions all around them?
Whatever the causes of the disillusioned voters turning to the promise offered by a “new” figure in their political sphere, our students may well have formed their own opinions about the personalities, the apparent vitriol employed by them or, importantly, the political system. We sweated on the result because we are so intrinsically linked to the fortunes of the U.S.A., and we do tend to “catch a cold when it sneezes”. Our political systems have structural similarities that we prize amongst our democratic values. It is these similarities that can be cause for concern when something such as a prolonged, spiteful political campaign throws up an unlikely result and clear uncertainly. That it might become the norm for elections to be battled on such cynical grounds is of concern and the lessons of history – and indeed the present – serve to remind us of the need for civility despite difference, and establishing the courage of one’s own convictions rather than leaning in to peddled fear.
We should guard our distance from this recent election, reinforcing the need for our children to see a less combative and more constructive process of political manoeuvring. We do not want to misrepresent what has happened, of course, but we can make more important the values of decency and respect, even in our daily interactions with each other, that were so sorely missing from the election spectacle.
The Garden Festival
Congratulations to the Parents and Friends group for the significant undertaking that was the Garden Festival last weekend. Across eight sites we had Cathedral people working together and the generosity of local families who opened their gardens for the day. I was able to visit all sites, so I can say with authority that the day was a worthy examination of gardens indeed. The organisation that goes into any such event takes time, patience and coordination, so to the hardy committee who created the day, well done. Thank you also to the numerous contributors in catering, logistics, advertising, carrying, cleaning up and manning various stalls. While we were not lucky with the weather early in the day, we were fortunate to have good crowds in the afternoon and genuine diversity in the offerings to the public. It was not the school’s normal demographic that is necessarily engaged by an event such as this, so the broader community’s involvement was most impressive. Well done to all, and to all a good rest!
Students gathered around the flagpole last Friday November 11 to remember those who have served in a war or conflict as well as the men and women who still serve in the Defence Forces today. The opportunity to stand in silence at the eleventh hour, on the eleventh day of the eleventh month served as an opportunity to reflect and acknowledge what has passed, as well as recognise that hope when all seems lost, is a strength within us all. Thank you to those who read, carried the banner and stood so respectfully and silently. Thank you also to Ella James and Will Maclean for representing the school at the Cenotaph in Wangaratta.
Congratulations to Buffalo House for its very enjoyable House Assembly yesterday and the launch of the Bishop’s Appeal. It was wonderful to be able to announce the winners of the “Mrs Helen Farrer House Shield” for 2016, after a year of fiercely fought House events. Well done to Hotham House, who under the guidance of Mrs Marcelle Gerrish, was awarded the honours for the second year in a row.
Under the guidance of Jane Derrick from Zonta, Year Nine students helped to create sterile birthing kits as part of their Community Service program. These birthing kits are shipped worldwide to communities in need and help women give birth in a clean environment. Zonta estimates that these packs have reduced the infant mortality rate by 40% in some communities and our students were pleased to have been involved in something that helps those who need it most.
Germany Exchange 2016/17
On the German Exchange of 2016-17, Tom, Kiera and myself left Australia on November 4 on a 14 hour flight to Doha, Qatar for the first leg of our journey. From Doha we flew 6 hours to Munich, Germany, stepping from 30°C to a 3°C climate, before splitting ways to meet our host families. The following weekend, we settled into our new home city, Heidenheim. With a population of over 48,000 people, it is a beautiful city in the south of Germany.
At the Max-Plank Gymnasium with 0°C temperatures, our first school day began! School begins at 7:45 and finishes at 12:40, except for Monday and Tuesday when we have afternoon school till 4:15pm. Many of our subjects are science based and are spoken in the German language, with only English and Biology spoken in English.
Our afternoons are often filled with joining our exchange partners and their families in sports and various extra curricular activities. For our first week here in Germany we have been adjusting to the vastly different culture and language, but we are enjoying it and are looking forward to the rest of our time here.
The last two weeks have been particularly busy in the Food and Technology classroom. Students in the Senior School have been working through a range of design brief tasks. Year Seven students had to design a brunch for two friends, Year Eight had a choice of recreating one of four popular canteen items, Year Nine Make a Meal Of It were involved in resolving a diet related case study, Year Global Goodies had to produce a multicultural meal and Year Ten Master Class had to produce a two course meal that included two complex food production processes. Whilst students have some freedom with what they can choose to make, there is an emphasis on ensuring the constraints within the design brief are met. The Year Eight classes have found this particularly challenging as their recreated canteen item was not allowed to include beef, chicken, lamb or pork. Many heavy sighs were heard when they discovered this. The challenge was to find alternative sources of protein from the ones we commonly draw on.
The students in the Day Six, Year Eight Food Power class are to be congratulated for the magnificent work they did preparing lunch for the Local Learning Education Network (LLEN) meeting that was held at the College on Tuesday November 15. I would also like to thank Noah, Bethany, Darcie, Mitchell, Sarah and Alaina for assisting with the finishing of the lunch dishes and serving them to our guests. Well done everyone for your great cooperation and participation.
The junior school classes this term have been Year Five and Year Three students. We are having a great time in the kitchen. Whilst we have class once a fortnight it is great to see students remember the routine we use at the start of each class: hands washed, apron on, read the instructions on the whiteboard, collect your recipe book, fill the sink with hot soapy water, read the recipe. The photographs of the funny faces the Year Three students made, adorn the walls of the kitchen.
Pork and sage cannonballs
Fruit smoothie (this week)
Middle Eastern Tabouli – knife skills
Vietnamese chicken roll
Feta, sun dried tomato and olive muffins
Bread roll shapes – working with yeast (this week)
The greatest joy in teaching is the joy of working with children and acknowledging that you can make a difference. Primary-aged children are at such an impressionable age that nearly every experience and situation leaves an indelible mark upon them. This is not just evident in a school environment, but also in the family home, the local community and more than ever in the multi-dimensional media.
As I near the completion of my first year at Cathedral College Wangaratta, I have begun to reflect upon what it is to be a student at our school. It is clear watching life in the Junior School that a positive and peaceful environment is conspicuously evident amongst the student body. My observations show me that our school exudes a happy atmosphere where school life is actually fun and relaxed, the students genuinely friendly and caring, and learning takes place at every opportunity.
Our students have grasped a range of opportunities in the past fortnight that have enabled them to learn important life skills through different modes. The Hotshots Tennis initiative has seen our students learn new physical skills, work in partnerships and understand that cooperation leads to achievement. Observing them hitting a tennis ball in such a way to create a rally with a partner rather than a winner was a tangible example of such things.
The Bike Education course and related bike rides for Six Docker and Close are further examples of students working collaboratively to achieve a common goal, even though the actual riding of a bike is purely individual. Our students came to the Bike Education course with a range of past experiences, confidence and enthusiasm. Yet, as a group, they were able to achieve success.
Our Prep and Year One classes enjoyed a wonderful pizza and games night, before the Preps left and the Year Ones bedded down for the evening in their classrooms. For some of the children, it may have been their first ‘real’ night away from the family home, but for others they may already be veterans. In either case, the sheer adventure of staying the night at school was a deliciously exciting notion. And helping the Preps and Ones to enjoy the evening were most of our Junior School Captains, who independently organised and conducted a series of games for their young counterparts.
And for the icing on the cake, this week’s Junior School Assembly, some of our Year Four students, Tess Kelly, Will Erickson, Jack Weir and Cameron Mullens performed individual pieces of music on either drums or guitar. This was the second part of a two-concert series following the excellent performances by Elijah Royal, Alex Murphy, Daisy Bohun, Riley Anderson-King and Flynn Noble previously. But what made it even more special was the outstandingly respectful behaviour of our entire Junior School audience. As they say in the classics, ‘you fair dinkum could have heard a pin drop’ during each piece as the audience provided their undivided attention to each performer.
You cannot help but feel very proud of these high standards being set and attained.
Head of Junior School
As the examination period approaches, it is important for students to remember that good preparation and revision will stand them in good stead. Some top tips for revision are below:
1. Do not leave revision until the last minutes.
2. Organise a study space at home with enough room to spread out your books and notes.
3. Make sure your notes are up to date and you plan to revise each subject in the weeks leading up to the exams.
4. Think about the key ideas in each topic you study.
5. Try and use flow charts, diagrams, mind maps, sticky notes and highlighters to help with revising.
6. Take regular breaks that involve some movement or exercise.
7. Use the revision questions provided and make dot points.
8. Ask the teacher if you do not understand a topic.
9. Explain the key ideas you have learnt to someone else.
The best approach for the actual Examination:
1.Before entering the exam make sure you have everything you need: pens, pencils, calculators, highlighters etc
2.Read the instructions carefully.
3.Think about the meaning of the questions. Underline key words. Record your immediate thoughts.
4.Plan your answers, don’t rush into writing.
5.Keep calm and do not panic.
6.Proof read your completed answers. Add extra information if you can.
7.Never leave questions unanswered. Write dot point answers if you are running out of time.
We wish all of our students well over the next few weeks and encourage anyone who has concerns about the examinations to please talk with their teachers; we do not want to set any of our children up to fail.
Director of Studies
“A Talking Donkey?”
“The Lord opened the mouth of the donkey, and she said to Balaam, ‘What have I done to you, that you have struck me these three times?’” Numbers 22:28
Donkeys were the 4WDs of the day; they did it all. Balaam’s donkey in the Bible started doing its own thing, and he got so mad that he started to beat her. Finally, the donkey had had enough and spoke up. That’s right – the donkey said, “Listen, I’m saving your life and you slap me around?”
You see; Balaam couldn’t see the danger ahead. Things happen to us that seem to get in our way. Our car won’t start, we miss the bus connection, we get held up somewhere making us late, or a friend forgets to call. Instead of getting upset, thank God for protecting you, He could be keeping you from some kind of danger.
To promote a society free from violence against women and children, there is a Walk on the Wall which will run from November 14 until December 3 in the Post Office Arcade, Wangaratta. People are invited to trace or draw your foot or shoe on a piece of paper, write a name or message on it and pin it to the wall to show you stand up, speak out and act to prevent violence against women.
Reverend David Jones
Malthouse Theatre ‘Suitcase Series’
The College took its first ever steps onto the professional city stage in Melbourne two weeks ago as the Year Ten Drama elective class were given the opportunity to participate in the Malthouse Theatre’s ‘Suitcase Theatre’. This Series allows students from schools all over Victoria to perform on the ‘Beckett Theatre’ stage in front of their peers and industry professionals. The students first experienced some wonderful theatre from the Middle Students of Melbourne Grammar as we watched their production of Norman Lindsay’s ‘The Magic Pudding’ and it entertained us with laughs and clever design.
Friday delivered to the students an amazing day, as they watched five live versions of the script ‘Turbine’ by Dan Giovannani. We then had a great lunch and re-entered the theatre to watch three professional actors perform the same script and WOW! What a show the entire day presented.
To my delight a week later the Year Nine Drama classes also participated in this school drama program and this time it took place on the stage at WPAC. These students performed for the professional actors and like their Year Ten counterparts, then had a one-hour Q&A to delve into acting and design decisions.
I thank all the students for their energy and commitment throughout the rehearsal period. Truly ground-breaking steps for our College and our students thoroughly deserved the praise they received.
What a thrill to open a box and hold ‘Genesis One’ our College’s CD from ‘The Liturgies’. With the cover designed by two Year Nine students and the music performed and in some cases, written by our band, this is truly a treasure for the performing arts department and our College.
The CD is now for sale at the reception of CCW for $5. A perfect Christmas gift for the entire family and a wonderful stocking-filler. There are only a limited number so please get in early.
Many thanks to the students in ‘The Liturgies’ and to Paul Higgins at Studio 52 who manages the ‘Kool Skools’ program. We very much look forward to 2017 and our next CD.
A Festive ‘Steinway Concert’
On December , the young pianists in the Junior School are inviting the College community to be at the WPAC to listen to their performances. It will be a fun-packed evening and pure delight as we hear the fruits of their labour over the semester.
The tickets are now on sale at the Website:
The Code Word for families to purchase tickets is CATHEDRAL and the tickets are $5 each for all audience members and seats are limited. We look forward to seeing you there.
Yours in Music,
All things Tennis!
Our Junior School has participated in Hot Shots clinics this past fortnight with the skilled tennis coach Doug Smith in the Stadium. Students have looked at agility, hand eye coordination and played some friendly matches with each other. Further, our Junior and Middle School students played in a tennis tournament at the Hardcourts in Wangaratta and enjoyed the competition against other local schools.
Congratulations to Ben Edmondson for being selected into the Main Squad as a Ballkid for the Australian Open next year. This is very exciting as there is a hefty selection process. With 6 applications, 7 trials, 2 Interstate tournaments, 4 month training, 2500 applicants with a final number of 340 selected. We wish him well as he trains over the Summer holidays and hope that we see him on court with the world famous tennis players!
Ben also joined our State Table Tennis Team who enjoyed playing at a high standard down in Melbourne on Thursday. Whilst unsuccessful in the finals, congratulations must go to Kieran Linke, Reuben James, James Arendt, Ben Edmondson and Tom Rial.
On Thursday November 10, the Year Seven girls tennis team of Makenzie Guy, Dom Lee, Cassidy Mailer and Alex Salmon competed in the Hume Region tennis championships at the Wangaratta Lawn Courts. This followed their victory in the Upper Hume competition two weeks earlier. The format was slightly different this time and included one singles and one doubles match against the other three teams, Notre Dame, Tallangatta and Seymour.
The first match was against Seymour, who had some good players and while the Cathedral girls tried hard they were outclassed and lost 2 sets to 1. It was a better result against Tallangatta, where we had a comfortable victory 5 sets to 1. The third match against Notre Dame was significant because they had defeated Semour, so if we won well we were a chance to progress to the next stage. It was a close affair but we were not quite good enough and went down 4 sets to 2, eventually finishing third in our group.
It was an enjoyable day’s tennis with terrific weather and great grass courts and the girls all acquitted themselves well. Makenzie Guy achieved the best results on the day, winning all of her singles matches, though all of the girls won at least two sets each. Well done!
Year Six Garden
Thank you to all the parents, staff and students for donating their Friday afternoon and evening to help ‘build’ a garden for our Year Six students. People shovelled, wheel barrowed, planted, watered and did much of the heavy lifting to ensure that the Year Six students would return to school on the Monday with a new space to enjoy. In particular, Jenny Kjar, Kurt Hoysted and Craig Stone were instrumental in ensuring that this garden would be completed and we thank them for their hard work and efforts both in the planning and in the ‘doing’.
Important Bus Information: School Bus Program
Please be advised that the Student Transport Unit (DET) and Public Transport Victoria are currently undertaking a network compliance review of the Wangaratta School Bus Network. These are government funded schools bus services, not private charter or public transport (town bus) services. Whilst parent/guardians have primary responsibility for transporting their children to and from school, the School Bus Program (SBP) assists families in rural and regional Victoria by transporting children to school.
To be eligible for the School Bus Program, students must attend their nearest appropriate school (assessed by year level or denomination) and reside 4.8km or more from the school attending. Students who do not meet the eligibility criteria and/or do not qualify for a fare exemption (as determined by the School Bus Program Policy and Procedures) may access a School Bus Program service where capacity allows and upon payment of a fare. The 2016 flat rate fare for each student is $120 per term/$480 per year. Whilst the review is in operation, all travelers are permitted to travel on School Bus Program services under their current arrangements (regarding eligibility assessments). All families are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the School Bus Program Policy and Procedures, January 2016 and additional resources located on the Student Transport Unit (DET) website. Please contact Ms Janine Andrea, Bus Coordinator at the Wangaratta High School on 5723 0519 should you have any enquiries.
Year Seven and Prep Enrolment 2018 and 2019
Our Year Seven Enrolments have closed for 2018 and 2019 and Prep Enrolments are closed for 2018. If you have siblings wishing to enter Year Seven in either of these years or Prep in 2018, please contact the Registrar, Lucy Bett, on firstname.lastname@example.org or 5722 2144 as soon as possible.
As an open entry, non-selective school, students are placed on our applicant list according to the date Cathedral College Wangaratta receives the Enrolment Application. Siblings are given priority over non-siblings, but as a College we need to be aware of the intention to send other siblings along with a completed application.
FREE Family Support Session
Gateway Health Wangaratta
45-47 Mackay Street NO COST
Family and friends worried about a family member’s substance use and wanting to know more about how the police and other agencies can help are invited to attend this evening. Please register at http://www.eventbrite.com/e/free-family-aod-support-session-with-victoria-police-tickets-28513569855