Welcome all to a new school year! I am looking forward to beginning the year as Deputy Principal Pastoral Care and Wellbeing and have enjoyed working with students’, staff, and parents so far this week.  I would like to take this opportunity to welcome our new staff to the College and wish them all the best as they undertake their roles here.  May they all be blessed and have a calm and prosperous first few weeks as they look to settle in and become familiar with Marist Regional College. 

I would also like to welcome our new Year 7 students for 2023.  It has been a pleasure to meet you all and begin teaching in the area this week. I look forward to working with Mrs Helen Cox (Year 7 Coordinator) and the Year 7 staff to make your start to high school the best it can be. It has also been fantastic to reconnect with some of my past students from St Brigid’s.  

From a Pastoral Care and support point of view, we have begun the year continuing to build on our work with the Resilience Project pastoral framework or GEM program. The GEM program, Gratitude, Empathy and Mindfulness has the full support of all staff and students, and I am looking forward to seeing this flourish as the year unfolds. All students are encouraged to use Planners, and we invite parents and guardians to view the Planners and read the activities that are being undertaken.  

Lastly, I would like to wish Mrs Tracey Rogers and the SRC of 2023 all the best with their year together. May you achieve all your goals and grow in your leadership as the year progresses. I look forward to being a part of your meetings and planning for the activities you have organised throughout the year. This also goes to the House Coordinators and House Captains of 2023; may your year be blessed and successful in all you do.  

Please find below the speech from our College Captains (Fine Fifita and Veyakhar Pather) at our first assembly on Wednesday.  I would like to share this with you as the message to the school community was extremely moving and powerful.  “Look Beyond What You See” is the theme chosen, and to me, the messaging behind this theme means to look beyond the things you see each day and take for granted.  Be grateful for the simple things in your life, look beyond these things and appreciate them for what they are. There is a great message here and I look forward to seeing what our student leaders achieve in 2023.  

Mr Sam Johnstone  

Deputy Principal: Pastoral Care and Well-being 

2023 SRC Theme  

Over the summer holidays, the House Captains and SRC came together for a Leadership Camp run by JCP Youth. At this camp, we as SRC and House Captains strengthened our abilities to lead, broadened our current skills and discovered or gained new ones. Discussion on this year’s theme took place but not until Planning Day last Monday, both the SRC and House Captains agreed on the finalised school theme for 2023, “Look Beyond What You See”. 

Look beyond what you see. As deep as it may sound, there’s simplicity attached to it. Some of the first thoughts that come to mind may be: ‘to not judge a book by its cover’ or ‘to push past those beliefs that hold you back’. The way we think of it is like strolling through an art gallery. Take the Mona Lisa for example. Is she smiling or frowning? The mystery that shrouds her will linger on through the ages. Like a painting, of course, each of these ways of seeing our theme are valid. The part we all struggle with is acting out these positive changes in our lives.   

To influence positive change, we must be willing to acknowledge that there truly are better ways of seeing things.   

Look past your limitations and comfort zone. Just because you can’t see something in the present, it doesn’t mean it’s not there or isn’t a possibility. Your perspective is shaped by the judgment you pass upon what you see. So, don’t limit yourself. Go out and try something new or take the courage to go further than you think you can, because if you see the good in something, why stop there when things can be even better? 

Our school values: Hospitality, Respect, Justice, Compassion and Responsibility are the set standards in which we live out our Marist Truth. Together with our school theme for 2023, we as a school can find ways to incorporate the school values and theme, for the benefit of all. Within our school community, to “Look Beyond What You See” is to have a positive attitude towards all classes and peers and to look beyond flaws. To live it out, means that we as members of this college can identify our errors and not dwell on those mistakes that impact our performance, but to aim past it and keep striving. 

However, to “Look Beyond What You See” is an understanding that needs to be made with yourself, as you are your main priority. For some of us, looking at the bigger picture might come as difficult and for others, it may be effortless. Nevertheless, to achieve our goals for 2023 we will not dwell on mistakes made in the past but look forward to what lies ahead during this prosperous academic year. 

So, we ask you at the start of the school year to reflect upon what you see. Is it what you wish to see going forward? And if not, what is one small thing, whether it be in the classroom or outside of school, that you can do today for yourself or another, to look beyond the things which hold us back? 

And on that note, we present you with the opportunity to Look Beyond What You See, starting right here, right now. Thank you. 

Fine Fifita and Veyakhar Pather 

College Co-Captains