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It gives me great pleasure to inform the community that Mr Darren Kearney will be the Dean of Students at St. Patrick's College commencing in 2016. Darren has been a member of the College Leadership Team as Deputy Principal – Pastoral Care at Ignatius Park College in Townsville since 2007. Darren has a strong teaching background in the areas of senior Mathematics and Physics. Darren's appointment to this role is a result of the restructure of our College Leadership Team (CLT) for next year. During the first semester, the CLT with assistance from an outside facilitator, spent many hours reviewing the current make-up of the CLT and whether it was the best structure to move into the future. After much deliberation, we decided upon the following structure:

  • College Principal – Mr Chris Mayes
  • Deputy Principal – Mr Frank Torrisi
  • Dean of Identity – Mr Matthew Hawkins
  • Dean of Teaching and Learning – Mr Chris Campbell
  • Dean of Students – Mr Darren Kearney
  • Dean of Administration – Ms Zoe Morgan

The significant difference is that currently, Mr Frank Torrisi undertakes the role of College Dean (Deputy Principal) and Dean of Students. These roles will be split from the beginning of next year. There will also be some changes within some of the longer standing positions compared to the current role statements. These changes have been the result of much deliberation and as a CLT we are excited and looking forward to the changes for next year.

Throughout this year, we have encouraged our students to challenge themselves to add further dimensions to their lives. We want them to become multi-dimensional people. We have contended that students who take a view that they are only good at certain things or only like doing certain things, limit themselves in terms of discovering their many other talents and abilities. All of our young men are talented. As a Catholic school that espouses to holistic education, it is our aim to offer students opportunities to learn and develop spiritually, intellectually, physically and emotionally. What this means for our young men is that they grasp each of these opportunities, be it classroom learning, music lessons, service programs, retreats or sporting fixtures and use them as an opportunity to learn and grow as a person. We want all of our school graduates to develop into multidimensional men who will make a difference to the people and communities around them.

Last Sunday, I had the opportunity to attend the Queensland Catholic Colleges Music Festival. I was very impressed with the quality of performances from all schools who participated. However, I will admit to be biased when reviewing the performances of our College. Firstly, I would like to thank Mr Samuels, Mr Hockey, Mr Will, Ms Simmers and Ms Carvolth for their work in preparing the young men for the festival and making themselves available so that our young men could participate and perform in front of their peers and audiences. Our students were a pleasure to watch and hear. Significantly, many of them were in Year Levels 5 – 9. This certainly augurs well for the future within our music program. I would also like to see other students consider taking the opportunity to learn a musical instrument or sing. Learning how to play an instrument or sing and perform in front of an audience offers so much more than just skill. It allows the young men to develop their confidence and esteem, resilience and ability to perform under pressure. On Sunday, I saw a lot of very nervous young men blossom within their performances and, justifiably, feel really proud of themselves afterwards.

On Tuesdayevening, we hosted our annual College Open Day. This was my first at St. Patrick's College for some years. The organisation and planning were outstanding and I would particularly like to thank Ms Zoe Morgan, Mrs Jan Thompson, Mrs Robyn Donaldson and Mrs Maxine Nott for doing the lion's share of this work. We were very busy across the entire time of the event and had an opportunity to show our College to the many prospective parents and students. However, above all else, I would like to thank the many young men who volunteered to assist as tour guides for the visitors. From the very positive feedback that I received from some of our guests, they impressed with their obvious pride in the College.

Last Friday, we held our annual Inter-House Athletics carnival. I would also like to thank Mr Doug Locke and Mr Frank Torrisi for their planning and all of the staff for their assistance with organization and facilitation of the events throughout the day. I would also like to particularly mention the leadership and participation of our Year 12 students - it was simply outstanding.

The 6 th week of the term is about to finish tomorrow. This only leaves three more weeks before the exam period starts for most year levels. It is also usually a time when many assignments and other pieces of assessment become due for submission. I would encourage all parents to take some "quiet" time with their son(s) to review what assessment pressures they may be carrying at the moment and work with them, or encourage them to seek help at school, to deal with these pressures so that they do not impact upon their outcomes.

Mr Chris Mayes - College Principal