Newsletter - Term 1, Week 10, 2017

Dear Parents and Carers
As the Term concludes I wish to thank the students of the College for their diligence and dedication to their studies. In visiting classrooms throughout this Term, I have been impressed not only by the atmosphere of high expectations, but also the quality of our teaching staff. While a well-rounded education is critical to a child’s development and time must be set aside for physical, social and spiritual activities, as a centre of learning we want every child to achieve their personal best in their academic pursuits. So much energy has gone into improving our educational outcomes during Term One, and further projects are set to commence to support our teachers in their ongoing professional development. Equally, we have put energy into finding pathways for students who wish to pursue vocational opportunities, but demand of them the same level of commitment, effort and rigour. I believe we are heading in the right direction and the proof is evident for all to see.
Last year I had the opportunity to attend a presentation by renowned child psychologist Dr Michael Carr-Gregg. One of the areas that he explored was the notion of building resilience in young people. He defined resilience as the capacity for a young person to face, overcome, be strengthened and transformed by adversity. While he warned against the dangers of being a ‘snowplough’ parent, constantly protecting a child from any form of challenge or adversity, he also spoke about the risks of schools becoming too concerned with protecting students from realities of life. He used the example of schools that have banned marking mistakes in red pen because it might upset a student. His advice was schools should be welcoming, protective and nurturing, but at the same time, places where rigour and high expectations of effort and behaviour are demanded. The first part promotes personal growth and belonging, while the second allows students to build resilience, learn from their mistakes and be ready to face the challenges that life can throw at them. My hope is that at Xavier Catholic College, across all dimensions of schooling life, we are getting that balance right.
Finally, we will shortly enter the Easter Season. Easter is the cornerstone of our faith community. It is the message of irrepressible hope that inspires us to keep persevering and struggling despite the difficulties.  It can be hard to have hope when we see in our world, the consequences of war and violence, greed and oppression, hatred and bigotry, and the grief of death itself.  Where do we find room to hope in such a world?
At Easter we hear the story of our God, a God so committed to us that he was prepared to share in our human condition and the suffering that goes with it.  We remember that, in Jesus, God reached out to us and suffered with us.  We remember Jesus died on a cross, executed for crimes he did not commit. 
However the profound truth expressed in the life and words of Jesus could not be defeated. His message of hope, justice and love was too strong – he rose again.  It is in him, that our hope as a Catholic community comes to life. As the bearers of the spirit of God, may we too rise to keep that message of hope and justice alive in our world.
May you all experience a happy and holy Easter.
God Bless
Simon Dash
Dear Parents,
As we approach Holy Week and the end of the first term for 2017, I can honestly say that I have been overwhelmed by the welcome and support both my family and I have received since our arrival in Hervey Bay.  I have very quickly learnt that Xavier Catholic College is built on the goodwill and genuine care of the staff, students, parents and carers.  This goodwill and care also extends to the wider community. As you may have heard we have had many wonderful moments to celebrate and recognise in the Junior school over the past few weeks. I have included a few of these below:
  • Tri-Care Choir Visit
Congratulation to Miss McDuff and the Junior choir who travelled out to the Tri-Care aged care facility at Point Vernon.  I had the pleasure of joining the choir for this event and was overwhelmed by the joy and energy the students brought to their performance.  It was also wonderful to see the students interacting with the residents and the joy that this moment brought to all present.
  • Year 5/6 Gala Day
Our Year 5 and 6 students spent the day recently competing against the local primary schools in the first of the local Gala Days. We have very positive reports from several coaches regarding the behaviour of our students both on and off the field.  Congratulations to the teachers and students involved and a very big thank you to those parents who attended in support.
  • Howard Parish Visit
Thanks to Mr Davoren, Mrs Brennan and the students who travelled to Howard to join the local parishioners for Mass and a short morning tea.  The parishioners were very quick to comment on the conduct of the students involved and the friendly, courteous manner they displayed.  The students were a credit to our College.

I have also included some key dates for your diary for Term Two:
  • XAVIER DAY: Wednesday 19th April – Please join us to celebrate Xavier Day from 10.15 – 10.45 am.  As has becomes traditionin Junior School we will be holding a Lunch on the Lawn and all parents are invited to attend.
  • ANZAC DAY Liturgy: Monday 24th April – All parents and carers are invited to join us in JPAC from 1.45 pm onwards.
  • P-5 SCHOOL DISCO: Wednesday 26th April – Information regarding the disco will be sent home to parents before the end of the week.
  • MOTHER’S DAY LITUGY: Friday 12th May – All parents and carers are invited to join us in GOA from 9.00 am onwards.
  • UNDER 8’s DAY: Thursday 25th May
I would like wish all the families of Xavier a very Happy and Holy Easter.  Have a wonderful holiday break and I hope you all have the chance to get away for a few days or just spend some time relaxing with your loved ones.  I look forward to seeing you all in Term Two.
Mr Davey
Head of School (Junior Years)
Once again this week we can take a moment to reflect on the lives of our brothers and sisters around the world whom Caritas Australia is supporting through their annual Project Compassion campaign. This week we hear the story of Nguyet from Vietnam.
In a small town in Vietnam, a severe disability kept young Nguyet behind closed doors. Constrained by the high demands of her condition, her parents were also isolated from their neighbours. There is a high level of disability in Vietnam, particularly as a legacy of war, but little support for families whose children have disabilities. People with disability have poorer health outcomes, lower educational achievements, lower economic participation and higher rates of poverty than people without disability.
The future seemed bleak for the whole family, until Nguyet’s family became participants in a program supported by Caritas Australia. A neighbour kindly introduced the family to the Capacity Building for Parent Associations Supporting Children with Disabilities program, which has given them support on several levels.
The neighbour, a teacher, has been able to offer Nguyet home-based education, and there is capacity building for her parents and others in the same situation, through their local Parents’ Association. At Association meetings, Nguyet’s mother has been able to increase her skills for managing her daughter’s condition, and share her experiences with other parents of children with disabilities.

Nguyet has learnt to read and write and better manage her physical needs, and her creative gifts have been unlocked. Now she is increasingly engaging with her neighbours, and she and her parents are more confident about her future.
Once again, we thank everyone in our college community for their continued support of Project Compassion. We must always remember the words of Jesus, “whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.” (Matthew 25:40)
We would like to take this opportunity to wish all our families a blessed Holy Week and a joyous Easter! May your holidays be filled with love and laughter.
On Tuesday the 21st March six of our Year 5 students went to Gayndah (representing the Junior School student leaders) to participate in a Just Leadership Day.
This activity had them join with students from St Joseph’s Gayndah, St Joseph’s Childers and St Mary’s Maryborough to explore the qualities of a leader and a range of social justice issues in our world.
The students participated in a range of activities and came away with a plan of action that they intend to work on next term, which will involve raising the awareness of, and enlisting the support of, the rest of the school community.
When asked the best thing about going to this event they responded :
  • ‘Meeting old and new friends’,
  • ‘Learning lots about Caritas and how they help’.
  • ‘Learning a lot about how our lives are different to people in other countries’,
  • ‘Working with students from other schools’,
  • ‘Learning about other communities’, and
  • ‘Spending lots of quality time with Mrs Brennan!’ (on the 2 hour drive each way!)
Well done to Abby, Abbie, Claire, Georgia, Koopah and Lily for representing themselves and Xavier so well!
Just Leadership Day.jpg

“It doesn’t, matter where you came from, it matters where you go to”
This week as I walked through the middle school area I heard, “Hey Mum”.  I immediately stopped and looked around.   I looked lovingly towards the direction from which the sound came, anticipating that I would be seeing my 16-year-old son walking towards me.  It was not him.  I remember feeling this sense of sadness that it was not my son. However, it was another student calling out to her mother.  I noticed the mother’s response.  Inviting and loving.   Then I noticed the wonderful and amazing sense of familiarity as the young student and mother responded.  Responding with an offer of a loving relationships.  It was most beautiful. This Lenten journey I have often felt distracted and not focused on my desire to draw closer to Jesus just as this young student drew closer to her mother.  I have been participating in rituals such as, weekly check-ups on family, weekly soccer training drop offs, Thursday night footy, Friday afternoon socials, Friday night footy, weekly grocery shopping, washing, vacuuming and mopping the floors and at times making the evening meal for my family.  As I reflected on these happenings I wondered if God had a set way of praying, an expected way to engage in this prayer, to respond to each other……  This Sunday morning as I sit with time to myself as my son and husband are out fishing, enjoying all that creation offers, I find myself recalling moments in my past week that are full of opportunities to draw closer to Jesus.    It is through our daily rituals, offerings and sacrifices that we find Jesus in everything.  Everything is washed a new with the love of Jesus and the desire to be with him and feel that sense of being loved.  Just as that student felt loved when she drew her mother towards her.  May you find time to notice Jesus calling you, drawing you into his loving gaze and then respond.  How do we respond and live our life as Christ now and always? 
“Does God have a set way of prayer, a way that he expects each of us to follow?  I doubt it.  I believe some people – lots of people- pray through the witness of their lives, through the work they do, the friendships they have, the love they offer people and receive from people.  Since when are words the only acceptable form of prayer?”  Dorothy Day…
We are now over half way through lent.  
Carmel Donnelly
On the 22nd March the Social Justice and Action Ministry Team held the annual Caritas K’s event. The event was very successful with a substantial turn out on the day. During the 15minutes of the event a total of $40 was raised through generous donations. We would like to recognise the students involved in the event and thank everyone for their participation and generosity. The funds raised from the Caritas K’s walk will be added to the fundraising from Narwari’s mission week. All the funds raised will go directly to Caritas so they can continue their life changing work in Australia and beyond. Xavier Catholic College students’ lives were changed through their involvement of this event and they were also affirmed that this action will have a ripple effect and change the lives of others’. On behalf of the Social Justice and Action Ministry Team we would like to thank you for your support for this term.
Caritas Ks Walk.jpg

With many families moving around so much these days with work requirements and family reasons it is often difficult to ensure your child has completed their sacraments of initiation within the Catholic Church.  If you have a child who is a Baptised Catholic and is in year 8 and above who would like to receive confirmation and their first Eucharist (Communion) please contact myself, Carmel Donnelly directly on or on 41971165.  Preparation will commence in Term 2 this year. 
31/03      Year 10 Science Starlab
31/03      Last Day of Term 1
18/04      First Day of Term 2
19/04      Xavier Day
20/04      P-12 Cross Country
25/04      ANZAC Day (Public Holiday)
26/04      Year 6-11 Camps (through until 28/04)
The Uniform Shop will be opening on Wednesday 12 April, during the holidays.
Our school office will be closed for the duration of the 2 weeks of holidays. Saturday 1st, through until Monday 17th April.
The annual Alliance Française French film festival has become one of the most popular events on the excursion calendar for our language students. This excursion took place last Saturday, when our Year 10, 11 and 12 French students set off to Brisbane for a voyage into the world of French cinema and an immersion into the language and the culture of the country for a short time.
After a brief stop at Myer Chermside for a “shopping fix “, we set off for lunch at French Twist, located at the James Street precinct. Students could choose authentic French delicacies from the menu and were keen to satisfy their sweet tooths with the vast array of patisseries on sale. Miam, miam!! Then it was off to the movies at the very classy, Palace Barracks cinemas.
Our first film was a distinctive and impressive animation movie- Adama. This was the epic tale of a young and courageous 12-year-old Adama, whose older bother disappears from the cliff-enclosed paradise of a remote West African village. Defying the village elders, the brave, young boy sets off across the seas on a determined quest to find him. His odyssey leads him to the cold dark north, where his inner courage is tested and he is thrust onto the front line of World War 1’s horrific, Battle of Verdun.
The next stage of our language adventure came in the form of a much more serious movie, A Bag of Marbles. This film is based on the true story of Joseph Joffo, who at ten years old was given 20 000 francs by his father to escape from Nazi-occupied Paris in 1941. Armed only with their wits, best judgements and the occasional kind soul , they swerve and dart through the obstacles set by the Nazis to avoid succumbing to the dreadful fate of others like them. This was a movie which resonated greatly with our students and it was one which elicited a very emotional response.
A wonderful day with exceptional behaviour and involvement from the students!! Many thanks to Madame Lyle Gronow for giving up her Saturday and for her invaluable assistance on the day.
Loretta Swann- Director – Humanities/Arts/LOTE
French Film Excursion.jpg

On Friday, our Xavier Year 12 Hospitality class, ran a very efficient and successful Dessert service for 40 guests. This was the culmination of 6 weeks planning, trialling, presenting and tasting desserts – ready to show guests what they have learnt this term.
The five delicious desserts on the menu were:
  • Oreo cheesecake brownie with Oreo crumble, fresh berries and vanilla bean ice-cream.
  • Sticky Date Cake with Butterscotch sauce, cream and candied walnuts.
  • Passionfruit pannacotta with mango, passionfruit jelly, tuile cigar and cream.
  • Chocolate soufflé with chocolate sauce and cream.
  • Raspberry bavarois with raspberry ripple ice-cream and meringue.
Hospitality Desserts.jpg

Flash cards and peer teaching as part of a revision game can help to make preparing for exams more enjoyable. By expressing and sharing their ideas and knowledge, these Year 9 Science students helped each other review their learning in readiness for their upcoming assessment.
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From left to right – Masahide Saito and Minako Yoshida from Sophia University in Tokyo, and Gabor Toth from Sagami Women’s University in Sagamihara, met with Simon Dash our College Principal, Russell Davey (Head of School, Junior), and with Libby Gaedtke and Melinda Fowler from Student Support.  Our visitors are in Australia for an upcoming Special Needs conference, and visited Xavier whilst touring in our area. The origin of Sophia University can be traced back to more than 450 years ago when the Jesuit missionary Francis Xavier came to Japan in 1549 to spread the message of Christianity. The actual foundation of the university began in 1908, when three Jesuit priests arrived in Japan in response to a request from the Roman Pontiff at that time, Pope Pius X. 



BCE Connect, our mobile app for all our BCE Schools, is another great way to participate in our community.
BCE Connect gives parents, staff, extended family, friends and the public easy access to school information, making it easier to keep track and stay in touch.

BCE Connect has been designed to work on both Apple and Android devices.

Now, parents/legal guardians can use their BCE login to access extra Parent Portal features and private information such as absences, directories, and newsletters.

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Due to the current extreme conditions and forecast weather both the Parlouf relay to be held today (29/03/17) and the XCC Cross Country scheduled for tomorrow (30/03/17) have been postponed.  These events have been rescheduled to the dates shown below:

•    Parlouf Relay –Wednesday  19/04/17 – This event will be incorporated into Xavier Day.

•    XCC Cross Country – Thursday – 20/04/17

Thank for your understanding.

Community Camp Hervey Bay, will be running development sessions during the holidays on Tuesday, April 11th through to Wednesday, April 12th. This is open to boys and girls from 7 years to 12 years old and is to be held at Bay Power Football Grounds and Hervey Bay Bombers Football Club.
There is a limit of 30 children, so get in quick!
Times are from 10am to 2pm at a cost of $30
This will cover the costs of coaching and providing poppers and fruit through day and on the final day there will be a bbq which is to raise money for the Jake Garrett Foundation.
Register your kid at with your child's name and age and a contacted number.
Any questions feel free to call  Jayden on 0450 324 660.

A number of our students are involved in the below production, so it would be wonderful to show our support of this community collaboration.


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St Vinnies Poster Competition 2017a.jpg

St Vinnies Poster Competition 2017b.jpg