Newsletter - Term 3, Week 8, 2018

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Dear Parents and Carer’s

Creating a Culture of Care
Much of our Retreat and Personal Development Programs allow students to reflect and explore the kind of social skills that young people must develop to promote healthy relationships. Ultimately, it is an opportunity for students to appreciate their differences, talk about respecting those differences and to celebrate these differences as each young person journeys towards developing their own identity. Along the way, mistakes happen. But, in creating a culture of care and respect at Xavier Catholic College we find a way through the mishaps and misadventures of adolescence.

From time to time we hear in the media about law and order campaigns.  It’s the approach that says, “Let’s get tough and crack down”.  The same approach is sometimes called for in schools as a response to poor behaviour and inappropriate conduct.  As with most law and order approaches, those who advocate for a tough stance tend to see it differently when it is their own child who is seeking the mercy and compassion of the College for their own misdemeanours.

Xavier Catholic College sets firm standards in terms of behaviour and discipline.  We do not apologise for setting high expectations in this regard. But, such standards are best achieved through positive enculturation rather than through the threat of punishment or coercion.  Our desire is to create a Culture of Care that develops the ability to make responsible decisions in each and every student, rather than a Culture of Control, which seeks the outcome by imposing external punishment.  When a student graduates from our College our hope is that they have developed the skills to make sound judgements about their behaviour without having authority figures looking over their shoulder.  As a community that is founded on the life-giving message of the gospel, our desire to create a Culture of Care aligns well with our calling to be a faith community.    

For a Catholic School in the Ignatian Tradition, the cultural characteristics that every Jesuit School must strive to live out if it is to be authentic to its mission are very clear:

Holistic Education: integrated development occurs through quality teaching and learning
Spirituality: each person’s story is unique and sacred
Faith in Action: each person is called to respond out of a personal relationship with God
Community: a school forms a distinctive community
Pastoral Care: the dignity of each person as a child of God is at the heart of pastoral care
Service of Others: service of others is integral to becoming a follower of Jesus
Being Just: justice is integral to the vision of the Kingdom
At the Margins: Saint Ignatius, following Jesus, sought out the marginalised
Compassion: compassion is central to the life and teaching of Jesus and to the spirituality of Saint Ignatius and Saint Francis
Stewardship: God’s gifts are to be shared justly and used wisely, as exemplified by Ignatius
Reflective Practice: reflective practice leads to personal and communal growth.

The more these defining features are made clearly identifiable; the chances of bullying are greatly diminished.  Building up a community that is tolerant, respectful, responsible and values the dignity of each and every individual is a key response to addressing the problem of bullying and poor behaviour.  Much of the solution is found in building positive relationships within the community.  It is for this reason that our Responsible Behaviour Policy focuses on creating positive relationships and encouraging individuals to take responsibility for their actions.

Our focus on relationships and creating community is necessary in order to fulfil the task of education.  When you enrol your child at Xavier Catholic College you join a community. We are not a business dealing with individual clients. We are members of a community that is called to support and to challenge each student as they grow to maturity.  Of course, individuals grow at different rates and require different forms of support.  When we accept that we are in this together, we take a huge step to achieving our desired outcomes and goals.  

This approach is not only supported by our faith tradition but is also supported by educational research into the functioning of healthy organisations. The following quote comes from one of the world’s leading educationalists, Michael Fullan:

“Von Krogh et al (2000) emphasise that a culture of care (certainly not a business term!) is vital for successful performance, which they define in five dimensions: mutual trust, active empathy, access to help, lenience in judgement and courage.  Does that sound like soft stuff better suited to kindergarten?...
Not when you see the U.S. Army, KPMG, Gemini Consulting, Monsanto, British Petroleum, Sears and a host of other companies in “tough” businesses espousing quality relationships as vital to their success.”
 (Quoted in Leading in a Culture of Change Fullan (2001) (p.158)).

Creating a Culture of Care, as the writer says, may sound like “soft stuff”.  But the evidence is that it works and leads to healthy, high functioning and happy communities.  

God Bless
Simon Dash


R U OK Event
Our Junior choir and Dance Academy students were lucky enough to be involved in the local R U OK event.  This important initiative which focuses on the need to recognise mental health was well received by the students and their performance on the day was a wonderful example of the talent here at the College.  Congratulations to all students and staff involved.

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Father’s Day Breakfast & Liturgy
The special men in the lives of our students were recognised and celebrated last Friday with a breakfast followed by a liturgy.  A highlight of the morning was the annual student’s vs parent’s soccer match.  Although it was hotly contested it was a unanimous victory to the students on the day.  Thanks to all who attended and made it such a memorable morning.

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We had several teams compete recently in the regional Opti-Minds competition. All the competing teams performed admirably however the highlight of the weekend was a first place for our Year 4 team who will now move on the State finals in Brisbane.  Well done to the students involved and thank you to the staff who gave up their Saturday to allow students to participate.

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Queensland Core Skills Tests for 2018
This is the penultimate time for this set of testing over 2 days which assist in the development of a student’s OP result. Many of our Year 12 students have been in JPAC for most of Tuesday and Wednesday completing the tests. From 2020 the introduction of the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) with external exams will take over the role of the QCS tests.

We wish our Year 12 students all best with the outcomes of this testing and with their upcoming subject exams.

Great Sandy Straits Houseboat Fieldtrips
Last week and again this week our dedicated Marine Science and Aquatic Practices staff have taken the students in these subjects on a two-night, three-day tour on Houseboats. It is a wonderful experience for the students and gives them the opportunity to practice the skills they have been taught in class. We thank our staff for giving up time with their families to provide this for the students.

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Senior Education and Training Planning
The Senior Education and Training (SET) Plan is a key part of the Queensland Government’s Education and Training Reforms for the Future​ initiative. It builds on the types of programs already provided for Year 10 students to help them review past achievements and choose a program of education in Years 11 and 12.

Over the term our Year 10 students have used their Personal & Social Development (PSDE) class time to undertake a variety of activities looking at pathways they may consider and the many options available to them.
Last week students and their parents met with a SETP mentor to investigate their preferred pathways and confirm their subject selections for Year 11, 2019. This process will enable the students to be supported as they move through their final years of schooling.

Year 12 Xavier Formal
What an amazing event! The weather was perfect, the setting was beautiful, and the variety of cars set the scene for the arrival of our Year 12 students and their partners. Oceans Resort was the new venue for the Formal and provided a great backdrop for photos and the red-carpet arrivals.

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INSIGNIS - Year 12 Leaders Reflection afternoon
A final step in the Year 12 Student Leadership Development Program was undertaken last week when the students gathered to take part in a Reflection afternoon aimed at them examining the skills and talents they have developed over their time as a Leader at Xavier. They also assessed the difference they made to their peers, other students, as well as the College in general.

The newly elected Year 11 student leaders will now pick up the duties of our Year 12 leaders to enable them to focus on their studies as they move to the next stage of their lives. We look forward to celebrating with them as they move towards graduation in Term Four.


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QCS Tests
Year 11 REL Cultural Cafe
Year 12 only Exam Block
GECKO - Year 10
Year 7 - 11 Assembly
Year 3/4 Gala Day
Technology Challenge
Year 5 Come and Try Day
Year 9 PSDE Australian Navy Cadets Talk
GECKO - Year 10
Year 11 Maths B KAP Exam
Year Level / Extended PC
Coaching Young People for Success - Year 9
Year 5/6 Gala Day
Term 3 ends

Toby Powers excels at Australian Cross-Country Titles
Toby Powers has performed exceptionally well at the recent Australian Schools Cross-Country titles held in Maleny. Over a challenging 4km course, Toby ran superbly to finish in 7th position. This was then backed up a couple of days later where, as a part of the QLD relay team, Toby claimed gold in the Cross-Country relay event. Congratulations Toby on this outstanding achievement. You have represented yourself, your family and the Xavier community with great distinction.

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QLD All Schools Touch Football
All players have been given an information letter with details for the upcoming QLD All Schools Touch Football carnival. Payment and consent needs to be completed via Qkr! by the end of this term, Friday 21st September, at 9.00am. In addition, all players MUST complete the ‘Travel & Accommodation Form’ which players were given this week. Students who have not collected this paperwork, need to go to student reception to collect one.

Wide Bay Surf Lifesaving League
The annual Wide Bay Surf Lifesaving competition is being held at Bargara on Thursday 20th September. Students were asked to sign up for this event last week. Information and details will be communicated to these students soon.

On Thursday 16th August Prep went on an excursion to the Fraser Coast Cultural Centre. The Preps had a lovely morning learning about their local area and the things that make it special. We looked at some beautiful paintings that had been created by local people. The Preps also looked at a range of woven baskets and totems that were created by different aboriginal elders.  

The Discovery Sphere was a popular attraction, and it taught us many different facts about the animals and plants that can be found on the Fraser Coast. Another highlight was looking at ‘Nala’ the enormous humpback whale statue and the other outdoor artworks. It was a wonderful morning and we thank the staff at the Cultural Centre for making us feel so welcome.

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S.T.E.M. Science Show
As part of the Year 9 STEM course, each student was asked to select a science demonstration of particular interest to them. The students researched, prepared and performed their items as part of a Science Show for a class of Year 4 students. Through this activity students learnt about researching a question, writing a scientific method, preparing a risk assessment, communicating ideas and concepts and making modifications. The Year 9 students enjoyed sharing their passion for STEM subjects with the younger students.

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STEM students make a clock using potatoes
Need new batteries for your clock? Don’t worry, Year 9 STEM students have been investigating ways to power a clock with potatoes and other fruits. After making potato clocks as a class, each student has designed and implemented an investigation about alternative battery designs.

Ethan investigated the best metals to use in a potato to produce the highest voltage; Chloe and Lachlan looked into the best fruit and vegetables to use to power their clock; Aiden has been investigating the effect of age and potato type on the energy produced; Emily-Jane and Dylan have been using a number of solutions with differing pH, such as coke and orange juice to run their clock; while Jacob has tested the effect of using a number of potatoes connected together on the output from this interesting type of battery.

Through this activity they are learning about constructing a hypothesis, designing a fair test and controlling variables, using excel to display data and to analyse data to draw conclusions. So, if you are looking for a sustainable alternative energy supply or to reduce your power bills, these students are the ones to ask.

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XCATS Roar at National Finals
One of our Xavier’s Chemical Analysis Teams qualified for the RACI National Titration Competition finals and competed against schools across the state at UQ on the weekend. The team consisted of Poorna Jayasinghe, Ethan Makaresz and Kelsea Haupt. The competition required students to use a specialised technique to determine the amount of a chemical. The team produced the best results ever for a Xavier team with Poorna receiving a Silver Award and both Ethan and Kelsea achieving the highest standard of a Gold Award. Ethan was only 0.000006 moles from the exact answer; very impressive!!!! Congratulations on a wonderful result.

It wasn’t all stressful competition. We also went to the South Bank Markets and enjoyed the most Scientific of all ice creams; one made using liquid nitrogen. After the competition and a Pizza lunch at the Uni student hangout of “The Vill”, we locked the students and ourselves in an Escape Room. We had 45 minutes to use clues and props to unlock locks to “escape”. Fortunately for the students they were able to solve the puzzles and escape in time to enjoy sitting their QCS test this week.
Thanks to the College community for the encouragement of our team and for financially supporting our fundraising Cake Stall. We particularly wish to express our appreciation to our wonderful Super- Labby, Mrs Perry. Mrs Perry is always such a help in supplying and preparing the equipment and chemicals for the training of the XCATs on top of her usual load. This year she even baked up a storm for the bake sale.

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Thank you to all who came along to our Trivia Night this past Saturday to raise funds for the various young people’s programs in the Hervey Bay City Catholic Parish. A great time was had by all! We are especially thankful to the El Shaddai group for providing a delicious dinner and for all of the donations from businesses across our community. Many of our students at Xavier will benefit firsthand from your generosity.

As part of our Personal and Social Development in Primary, some of our College Leaders spent a lesson with the Year 6’s discussing the various social connection difficulties that can arise when becoming a teenager as well as throughout secondary school. The Leaders shared their own experiences providing advice as well as discussing the things they would do differently. The Leaders involved were Lochie Armstrong, Lochie Espulso, Jack Buckley, Grace Lunn, Alex Pronk, Keely Blenheim, Jade Dundas, Lucy Glass, Bronte Everett, Mollie Anderson and Lauren Flynn.

The Year 6 students enjoyed the time with the Leaders and said they got a lot out of the experience. One student said, “I really enjoyed talking with the Leaders and hearing how they got through their friendship problems”. Another said they liked knowing that things work out most times. The Year 6 teachers all agreed that the lesson was a success with all students being fully involved with the Leaders. They also said all of the students spoke positively about the lessons and were able to identify various ways the talk with the Leaders will help them.

The Year 6 students and Class Teachers are very appreciative to the College Leaders for providing their time to share their experiences with the Year 6’s.


Father’s Day Raffle- Senior French Students
A huge thank you to all who supported our Father’s Day raffle and stall this year. Many thanks to the P and F for providing such a wonderful array of items for sale. The proceeds will go towards supporting the cost of our French Tour in 2019 for Senior French students. Congratulations to our lucky prize winners below.

1st Prize – Half Day Quick Cat II Whale Watch Adventure Cruise valued at $110.00
Winner - Kylie Elsey
2nd Prize - $50.00 Voucher Bunnings + Toiletries Gift Pack – Nova Pharmacy
Winner- Ellsie Taylor- 2.2
3rd Prize – Two Meal Vouchers – Hervey Bay Boat Club valued at $50.00
Winner – Georgie Zarkovich- 3.2
4th Prize – A box full of Father’s Day gift items.
Winner – Michael King

Hope you all had a wonderful Father’s Day.
Lynette Pritchard – Senior French Teacher


Below is an excerpt from our School Fees and Levies brochure, available on the Parent Portal via this link:

Fees and levies brochure 2018.pdf

Please refer to this document for further information.
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A friendly reminder to be courteous and respectful to other drivers and pedestrians while on School property.  This extends to ceasing the double-parking outside the Administration building.  This is a roadway and normal road rules apply.

Please remember that you can stagger your pick-up time to avoid some of the traffic congestion.  Our Junior Teachers remain on duty in the pick-up area until 3.30pm each day.

Please visit the Parent Portal if you need to amend your family details.  This includes new addresses, phone numbers or email addresses.  Please read the BCE Information Collection Notice relating to your personal information and how it is used, by going to the Forms and Documents section, Enrolments in the Parent Portal, to update your information.

The Year 9 and 11 students were visited by 2 Legatees leading into Legacy Week.  Students were informed of the story of Legacy and the service they provide to over 65,000 widows and 1800 dependents in Australia.  Legacy was founded in 1923 by a small group of veterans who believed that they must accept a legacy of responsibility for the welfare of the wives and children of their comrades who had either died during the 1914 – 1918 war or subsequent wars.

Thank you, Dan and Barry, for your time and the sharing of your story. With such a worthy cause the students now have a better idea of where their money goes when they buy a badge or wristband during Legacy week.

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Longer length senior polos have arrived, in all sizes starting from Large.  These are available now at the Uniform Shop.
COMMUNITY EVENTS                                          
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“Fraser Coast Lines in the Sand: Inspiration for Readers and Writers” is an annual festival being held from the 14-16 September 2018 and is a great opportunity to bring some of the best Australian writers and thinkers to the region.

During the writers and readers weekend there will be best-selling, award winning authors holding free and paid workshops, lectures/conversations, meet and greets and book signings. Of particular interest to our junior writers and artists are the workshops of Thomas Hamlyn-Harris, Introduction to Visual Storytelling - Comics and How Do You Read Wordless Books - Comics? Both sessions are suitable for 12 years+.

For more information on these workshops and more great opportunities our program can be viewed online at or at your local library branch.

For bookings please visit your local library branch or go to  or


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