Headmaster's Weekly Address

Dear Parents

Courtesy of Kate’s chauffeuring skills and the Director of Studies generosity, I enjoyed watching football and rugby at Heyington last Saturday. The highlight of the school week was Edmund Rice Feast Day. At Mass on the Wilding Centre Courts the boys were superb, respectful and involved in the Eucharist. It is wonderful when we gather boys and staff, Preparatory to Year 12. The activities that followed Mass varied from Glendalough Tabloid Sports to the Years 7 – 9 Walkathon to the Senior House Tutor Group outings. To complete the day, parents gathered at Waterford for Parent Enrichment where they heard from Mr Leon Egan, Indigenous and Multi-Cultural Relationship Manager for the AFL Players’ Association. We have such a rich Edmund Rice heritage to drawn upon as our community moves into our second century.

May I wish all mothers a very special day this Sunday. I admire with gratitude and genuine awe my wife’s skills and love as mother, the steadfastness and wisdom of my mother and mother-in-law and I am so grateful for our daughter-in-law’s brilliance as a new mother.

Below is the address delivered by our Deputy Head, Ms Canny, at Heyington Assembly Monday last. It stands and speaks for itself.

Ms Janet Canny, Deputy Head - Address to Assembly 6 May 2019

Good morning Staff members and boys.

As we prepare to celebrate the feast of Blessed Edmund Rice, I am asking you this morning to stop and think about the responsibility that sits with each of you to honour Edmund’s legacy. You know his story but what does that story look like, how is it lived, in these current times? Edmund was a man who saw need and responded. His response was practical and driven by compassion and a sense of his own good fortune. He also had the ability to inspire others to embrace his vision. He brought about significant change in his time.

You are the sons of Edmund and you have a responsibility to uphold that tradition: to be good men, to acknowledge your own good fortune, to respond to need when you see it and to make a difference to the world in which you live. We seek to develop the Gospel values in you and the qualities of compassion, of empathy and of gratitude. Edmund cannot remain a distant figure. Tomorrow we stop all classes across our 3 campuses and bring the whole community of staff and students together. It is a most significant day. We take the time to bring Edmund alive in our lives now and to draw inspiration from his example.

This morning I wish to put before you an example of an Old Boy who has done just that. He understood that commitment to social justice was not just something done with fundraising in the junior classes, with the Soup Kitchen at Waterford, in the Year 10 Religious Education course or through the House social justice partnerships. These experiences are important but we fail as a school, established on the ethos of Edmund Rice, if those experiences remain part of your life only during your school years. To be true to your heritage, there should be a life-long commitment to social justice, to acknowledging your own good fortune and reaching out to those less fortunate, to see need and not look away, to seek to serve as the sons of Edmund Rice.

The Old Collegian that I am referring to was born in a refugee camp in South Sudan. Kuany Kuany commenced at St Kevin’s College in Year 10 in 2010. His family had come to Australia under the refugee settlement scheme, leaving behind them family members and very traumatic times, including many years living in a refugee camp. His family took a while to find a home and connect with a new community in Melbourne’s western suburbs. Then tragedy came to them again when Kuany’s grandmother was murdered by a family member who had succumbed to the pressures of resettlement in Melbourne and associated mental health and drug issues. Kuany never dwelt on the difficulties of his childhood and dislocation from his homeland. Instead he acknowledged his good fortunate in coming to Melbourne and in having the opportunity to attend St Kevin’s College and have the support of so many staff members and the friendship of the boys. He always considered himself lucky.

Kuany was a diligent student and even though he travelled a long distance to school, he fulfilled all his responsibilities as a student. He followed an extraordinary timetable of study and sports training, with a 5am start each day, to ensure that he fulfilled his potential, playing in the 2011 APS Premiership Basketball team for the College, and serving as Deputy Captain of the team and a College Officer in 2012. On graduating with an excellent ATAR score, Kuany Kuany accepted a scholarship to the University of Chaminade in Hawaii where he graduated 3rd in the school’s all-time scoring list and held a number of impressive records. Since returning to Australia, he has been contracted to Cairns in the NBL and just completed his second season where he was voted the Player’s Player by his teammates. Last year he was also named a member of the St Kevin’s Basketball Team of the Century.

After just 3 years in this school community, Kuany had a clear and committed understanding of what is to be a graduate of an Edmund Rice school. At that time, he gave an undertaking that he would make the most of the education he had obtained but also that he would find a way to give back, to reach those who were less fortunate, to make a difference in the world, to be true to the Edmund Rice legacy. And he has done just that.

The Kuany Kuany Give Back Camps conducted by the Kuany Kuany Foundation provide free clinics for boys and girls aged 6-18, with the aim of providing a safe and inclusive environment in which children of all backgrounds can enjoy basketball. Recently the second annual camp in Werribee was held at which 90 children were given skills training by a large group of volunteer coaches, consisting of NBL players and well established trainers and coaches from the industry. I’m told that Kuany’s passion in promoting inclusivity and diversity at the clinic has been extraordinary and that the children regard him as their hero, their inspiration, seeking his autograph and hanging on his every word. What also needs to be noted is that two of the coaches who support Kuany in this work are also old boys of this college, Tom White from the class of 2004 and Charlie Collopy-White from 2012.

 

So tomorrow when we again return to our founding story, think about how you, like these old boys, are going to live the Edmund Rice legacy beyond your time at school. What is your “Give Back Camp” going to look like?

Headmaster’s Study Awards

 

Year 12

Studio Arts

Connor Henderson

 

 

Patrick Pettenon

Year 11

Studio Arts

Fintan Mahon

 

 

Daniel Pollock

 

 

Isaac Sherwill

 

 

Conor Stone

Year 10

Art

Frederick Holland

Year 9

Science

Matthew Hudson

 

 

 

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Student Leadership Appointment

Officer

James Farrar

 

Co-curricular Appointments

 

Rugby

Captain

Darcy Peel

 

Deputy Captain

Mosese Tuipulotu

 

Kind regards

Stephen Russell