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We Belong

Feeling like we are part of something bigger than ourselves.

The beginning of Week 3 for the year brings a positive feeling that things are underway. Thank you to everyone in the community who has helped 2021 get off to a good start. It was great to see so many parents present for our various information evenings last week. Our numbers were very strong and we will continue to look for opportunities to welcome parents on to the site as regularly as possible within the current guidelines and the nature of our indoor spaces and gathering areas. Thank you for your understanding and support. We look forward to the upcoming Junior School Parent, Student and Teacher Feedback Meetings that will take place on site.

We struck a new tradition for the College last week – the Treacy Medal was presented to all Seniors of 2020 who achieved an ATAR of 95 and above. Congratulations to Thomas Perissinotto, Mitchell Bradshaw, Thomas Kearney, Samuel Carr, Hugo Renouf and Christian Hiley. We also invited our top performing Vocational Education and Training pathways student, Ziggy de Nicoli back to the College to speak with the Senior School along with the boys who achieved an ATAR of 99+.

The addresses from Ziggy, Tom, Mitch and Tom, were most representative of our culture: humble, honest, and genuine. Ziggy spoke honestly about what he had identified as his strengths and interests and how he had worked to achieve his goals at school and now in his transition to post school training and work. Over the past two years, our Year 12 groups have been a balance of OP/ATAR pathways and Vocational Education and Training pathways. Last year, 65 of our 95 boys achieved a vocational qualification from Certificate 1 to 4 or a Diploma of Business.

As we continue to grow, VET pathways will be a strong part of our school as well as seeking to support young men in attaining their goals in an ATAR pathway and university matriculation. Our goal is to equally empower and support these pathways as we continue to establish our Senior School program.

It was a delight to listen to our students who achieved an ATAR of 99+, the 2020 Dux and College Captain, Thomas Perissinotto, Proxime Accessit and College Vice Captain Mitchell Bradshaw and House Captain and Co-Sportsman of the Year, Thomas Kearney. Hearing from our past students is invaluable in continuing to nurture our student learning culture.

We greatly look forward to our Opening Mass for 2021 being celebrated at Riverlife tomorrow with our Senior School students and Year 12 parents in attendance. Mr Matt Warr, Dean of Faith and Mission is also facilitating some Year Level Liturgies to signpost the beginning of the year as a Catholic community.

Charlie Neumann, our College Captain will formally break open the Senior’s theme of ‘Belong’ for the community tomorrow and our year is truly underway. I share a brief section of my address for tomorrow which I hope captures something of our mission as a Catholic School in the Edmund Rice tradition and our philosophy here at ATC:

At Ambrose Treacy College, we aspire to the goal of each boy achieving his personal excellence. We aspire to providing an environment which is both challenging and caring and we aspire to provide a holistic range of learning and formation experiences both inside and outside of the classroom that gives each young man ample opportunity to explore, grow and develop according to his interests, abilities and diffabilities.

The danger in lofty mission statements and strategic plans full of words, is that the opportunity to match words with actions is missed. It is one thing to say the words of belonging but fail to put tangible actions in place which animate and activate what they mean. I commend the Seniors of 2021 for the philosophy behind their theme and more importantly, for what they have already done to put their words into action; to walk the talk.

To belong is not to have everyone being the same. Quite the opposite. Our hope for ATC is that we belong in celebrating our diversity and differences. Our hope would be that each student from Year 4 to 12 is respected, supported and cared for to feel that what he has to offer matters to the whole, is valued and valuable. We hope that he can feel a part of something that is bigger than him as an individual and that he cares about what he contributes as an individual. Our dream would be that belonging in our community, in partnership with his family, forms him to believe that he can be an influence for good in our world and to pass on the culture of a Man of Courage, integrity, kindness and justice to all he meets in his life and in the roles, he plays throughout it.

Prayers

I ask the community to please keep Yared McDonald (5 Treacy) in your thoughts and prayers following the recent passing of his Great Grandmother. We hope that the passage of time will help heal the pain of her passing. Eternal rest grant unto her O Lord, may perpetual light shine upon her, may she rest in peace. Amen.

God Bless.

Chris Ryan