Newsletter - Term 2, Week 4, 2017


LEADERSHIP ADDRESSPrincipal Address image1.jpg

Dear Parents and Carers

Real Stories: at the beach one day (from the Story Source)

“At the beach one day I watched a group of teenage boys playing a casual game of touch footy.  They were all strong, agile, muscular, bronzed Aussies.  All, that is, except one.  He was the ugly duckling of the gang – overweight, slow on his feet, sunburnt rather than sun tanned.  He was clearly paying for his differences.  I watched, sick to the stomach, as the boys on both teams teased and jeered him, making him the butt of every joke.  Whenever he got the ball it was as if the game would temporarily stop as a player pummelled him into the sand, tackling him with a ferocity reserved for him alone.  This was bullying with a capital B.
To make it worse, the boy played the role of the perfect victim.  He made no effort to stand up for himself.  He was pretending he didn’t mind the bullying and practically made himself into a human punching bag through his passivity.  My thoughts flashed forward – ten, twenty year into the future – and saw a young man damaged by poor self-esteem, carrying a truckload of painful memories.  Dear God! I prayed.
At that moment, as if an answer to prayer, two more boys joined the game.  They were obviously part of the gang but I could see them taking offence to what was going on.  ‘Hey, get off him!’ ‘Just play the ball, mate.’  They had a knack of calling off the bullying while encouraging the boy to be more proactive in his defence.  I was mentally applauding them for their goodness and courage.
I left the scene pondering the complexities of human nature.  How is it that some people have the courage to withstand the temptations of peer pressure while others so readily succumb?”
When I read this story, it struck me that growing up can be a difficult and challenging process.  The tension in each person between being a bully, a victim and a liberator is a hard call to make when you’re dealing with the pressures of growing up.  These same pressures affect each young person in our community.  The journey to adulthood is the journey to the position of the liberator.  A person who possesses enough self-confidence and self-belief will not act as a bully, nor a victim.  Rather they radiate the kind of confidence that enables others to find the noble spirit within them.  Liberators allow others to enjoy life in all its fullness.

Bullying has no place at Xavier Catholic College.  Every person within our community has the right to feel safe, valued and free to pursue their interests.  As a community filled with young people searching for their identity, from time to time, students will get it wrong and succumb to the temptation of putting others down.  But, bullying is never acceptable and as a community we respond to each circumstance with vigilance.  Our policies and practices are in place to keep our children safe.  They are there not only for the protection of the victim, but the education and growth of the students who commits the bullying behaviour.  Their journey to growth is just as important.  Bullying behaviour must be challenged if such growth is to take place.

What underpins all we do are our values which are sourced firmly in the gospel.  Educating our young women and men to respect the dignity and value of each person is a crucial starting point.  It is the critical partnership that the parents and the school share.  Together, we promote the respect of self and the respect of others, so that our young people can grow to adulthood.  Such values are the ultimate non-negotiables of Xavier Catholic College.  At times it means we challenge students, but we do so in the spirit of partnership with the parents who desire the same outcomes of growth towards adulthood.  When we challenge a student’s behaviour, we are not challenging the parents.  Rather, we are providing the greatest form of support in our shared task of educating and raising young ladies and gentlemen.

Personal growth does not take place in a vacuum.  It takes place in the seedbed of values which are promoted both at home and at school.  Let’s make sure that we are consistent in the values we share with our children.  The constant drip, through word and action, helps water the soil.  At the end of the day, in a spirit of partnership, I hope that both parents and the College will be able to take great pride in the strong and healthy crop that is grown.

God bless
Simon Dash

Dear Parents,
As many of you will be aware this week (Week 4) is our first full week for the term.  Despite the interruptions we have had this term, teaching at Xavier is well underway for the term.  As always I have been very happy to bear witness to the ability of the Xavier students to handle a packed agenda whilst also approaching each school day with enthusiasm and a desire to learn.  I have included below some key events for the week ahead below:

Students in Years 3, 5, 7 & 9 have been sitting their NAPLAN examinations this week.  Teachers have spent considerable time preparing students for these tests and ensured their classes are familiar with the structure of the allocated days.  We wish all students the very best of luck as they complete these national examinations. If you have specific queries surrounding NAPLAN please do hesitate to contact the college. Mrs Smith for years 3 & 5 and Mr. Collier for years 7 &9.

Mother’s Day Liturgy
On Friday, the Junior School will host the annual Mother’s Day Liturgy.  This important event will begin in the GOA Centre at 9.00am.  This is a special moment for the college as students take the time to reflect on those who provide them with love and care each day. All parents are invited to attend the Liturgy and the morning tea which will follow.

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Fraser Island Excursion
We wish our Year 11 Biology students the very best as they head off on excursion to Fraser Island on Thursday and Friday. We thank Mrs. Riggs and Mr. Turner for providing what will be a valuable opportunity for putting their learning into practice.

Junior Years Athletics Carnivals Term Two
This year the Athletic Carnival will see some changes. Based on feedback from staff and parents the decision has been made to host a separate K-2 Carnival.  This event will be held on Friday 16th June and will involve all P-2 Students.  The Xavier Kindy will also be invited to attend this day. The Carnival will take the form of six, 20 minute, rotations of fun, athletic activities for the students to participate in. They will be non-competitive events, with the focus being on getting the students to have a go at simplified athletics activities and enjoying themselves. Each year level of students will be spread across 6 groups and will rotate around the organised activities.  They will finish the rotations with a card full of stickers, a ribbon and sausage sizzle.

On Thursday 22nd June, an Athletics Carnival for students aged 8 years to 12 years will be held.  All students will be eligible to compete in track events on the day. The field events will be for those students who have qualified for the finals during lunch time trials.  Those students who are not competing in field events will be participating in a ball games competition. Some field events will need to occur at lunch time. The dates will be advertised in the Newsletter along with regular reminders regarding our upcoming carnivals.

Under 8’s Week
Preparations are well under way for Under 8’s week, 2017.  It is our turn to host Star of the Sea this year and teachers are busy preparing for Thursday 25th May 2017.  This day is dedicated to our younger students and all things early years.  More information will be provided over the coming weeks.

Mercy Foundation Youth Awards now open
Help us to bring about an END to human trafficking and slavery in Australia.
The Mercy Foundation Youth Awards Video Competition is open to students in Years 10, 11 and 12 across Australia.

It's hard to believe that human trafficking and slavery is happening in Australia. This hidden practice includes servitude, forced labour, deceptive recruiting for labour or services, trafficking, forced marriage and debt bondage. It involves the exploitation of vulnerable people for a profit and it is an abuse of human rights.

Video Competition
Your challenge is to develop a video campaign, up to 4 minutes long, that
1.    Explores ONE of the following issues and
2.    Includes a plan of action that you and your community can take to help abolish this illegal practice.

The issues are:
•    Human trafficking and slavery in domestic servitude
•    Human trafficking and slavery in restaurant work
•    Human trafficking and slavery in agricultural work

Follow this link for information and resources on human trafficking and slavery in Australia.
Cash Prizes
First Prize:      $700 to be shared by the winning team/s and $700 to be shared by the winning school/s
Second Prize: $350 to be shared by the winning team/s and $350 to be shared by the winning school/s
Third Prize:     $200 to be shared by the winning team/s and $200 to be shared by the winning schools
Important Dates
•    Competition closes at midnight, Friday, 23 June 2017
•    Winners announced week commencing 18 September 2017

For More Information Please contact Mrs Carmel Donnelly @
12/05     Mothers Day Liturgy (9am GOA)
22/05     Dirum Mission Week (Continues until 25/05)
26/05     Fraser Coast Show Holiday

Congratulations to our Xavier Catholic College entrants in the 2017 Rostrum Voice of Youth Competition - Naomi Shanahan-Giaquinto and Alex Pronk. The senior division of the competition was held at St Mary’s College, Maryborough on Saturday 6th May where the students presented an eight minute speech on their thoughts and experiences of the world.  Rostrum is a prestigious national speaking competition and is designed to encourage leadership and personal growth in young people. Both Naomi and Alex were excellent representatives of the College with well prepared, engaging speeches delivered with confidence. The Rostrum judges were very impressed with the standard of the speeches, commending the entrants for their willingness to step out of their comfort zone. Congratulations to Naomi and Alex for their outstanding efforts. Naomi was successful in this first heat and will now compete in the Regional Semi-Finals with an opportunity to represent Queensland at the State Finals. Best of luck Naomi!

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Do you have a blue card?
If so, Year 3 need YOU!!
Where: year 2/3 shade sails
When: Tues, Wed, Thurs afternoon from 2:40pm-2:55pm
Who: small groups of year 3 children need your help
What: listen to children read selected books, assist with prompting to use reading strategies and discuss books/words to assist with understanding
Why:  to help support reading progress
If you can help on any or all days, please see our friendly year 3 teachers in the building alongside GOA.
Mrs Wilson, Mrs Jensen & Mr deWaard

On Wednesday 3rd May, 87 students from Xavier competed at the Hervey Bay District Cross-Country from 9yrs to Open age divisions. Students are to be congratulated for their excellent performances and exemplary conduct throughout the day. Xavier Age Champions were as follows: Blake Tomekovic,Madison Fletcher, Seth Tomekovic, Toby Powers, Chantelle McCarthy, Lochie Armstrong and Todd Baldwin. As a College, Xavier were narrow Runners Up in both the Junior Trophy (8 points) and the Senior Trophy (5 points). 23 students from Xavier will now represent the Hervey Bay District at the Wide Bay trials held in Gympie on Tuesday 30th May. Paperwork has been handed out to these students and Consent Form and payment on Qkr is due by the end of the week.
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When paying for your child to compete at Sport Events via the Qkr! App, can parents please ensure that the child who is the beneficiary of the payment is selected. As payment on Qkr often also doubles as parental consent, it is important that the correct child is selected. Parents who wish to pay cash or by credit card are welcome to do so at the front of administration where a paper copy of parental consent can be completed.
Sport at Xavier Catholic College is built upon the ethos of integrity, respect and responsibility. Xavier Sport is not outcomes driven; we acknowledge our successes but of far more significance is the way in which we compete. Students who represent Xavier continually uphold this ethos which lays the platform for the successes that often follow.
The evidence of this ethos in action is most keenly observed by the levels of participation of students in Interhouse and Interschool competitions. It’s a simple formula: “maximum participation equals maximum potential”. Buthu’s recent victory in the Interhouse Cross-Country is proof that the more people you have running, the more chance your House has of reaching its potential/being successful
Xavier’s numbers at the District Swimming Carnival earlier in the year were as high as ever, resulting in the College reaching its potential. Xavier’s representation at the recent District Cross-Country, although still high, was below our usual number of competitors. Whilst student withdrawals from the competition will never be frowned upon, late withdrawals make it very difficult to find replacements in time. This in turn decreases our opportunity to reach our potential.
As we head into the athletics season, I encourage all students to make the most of the opportunities provided and please communicate a withdrawal from an interschool competition as early as possible so a replacement can be made. This will enable us to extend an invitation to participate to other students, increasing our potential to excel.
AFL Queensland will be here Thursday 1st break to do a session with girls 16yrs and under. They will also give information concerning a new Girls AFL competition starting soon. Please meet down the oval at start of 1st break on Thursday if you are interested.