Officer Campus – 7 February 2019

Welcome – We Grow Together

Happy New Year to all members of our Officer Campus community, particularly to the families of our new Year 7 students. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and a relaxing holiday during the extended summer period.

The beginning of the school year can be an emotional time for teachers, parents/guardians and our young men and women. For many students, the return to school is a time of great change. The new school year brings new routines, teachers, friendships, transport, and new expectations and responsibilities.

Whilst some students will thrive and enjoy these added responsibilities, others may feel that they’re not ready to live up to the expectations and demands of school. It is our role to support you through this transition, to reassure you and the young men in our care, and to help you feel safe and secure.

Many of you have probably received communication from the College welcoming you to the school and providing you with a little information on what to expect. Please contact your son and/or daughter’s Care Group teacher should you require support with their learning program.


Welcome Liturgy and Assembly

The recent Welcome Liturgy and Assembly was a wonderful celebration. During the Welcome Liturgy and Assembly, I spoke about the Positive Learning Partnerships as a hallmark of the way we work with young people at Officer Campus.

Here are some key messages I passed on to our students:

  1. You are important as a learner and a human being in our community

As a member of this community, you are given every opportunity to show us what you’ve got and to give us your very best. The talent that you come in with, matched with your desire to make the most of your talents is exactly what we want in all areas of your learning. We Grow Together is more than just a line on a poster.


  1. You will be expected to engage in the learning activities during class time. Your teachers will introduce the learning activities, but you will be responsible for the actual learning.

As a member of this community, we want you to try your hardest, to give your best. You are a part of a community that cares for you and wants to provide you with the very best learning experiences.


  1. Everything you do – good or “bad” – affects everyone else in the room. That means everything you do matters because you matter.

So, it is important to show unconditional respect for your classmates, for your teachers and for all of the support staff at Officer Campus.


  1. Struggling is a part of learning. If it’s simple or simply done, you’re probably not learning anything.

An attitude of consistent improvement and a fierce hunger to succeed acts as the fuel for the best learners in the best classes. That gives them the chance to prepare and perform at their best in all learning tasks. Working hard earns you, your success. It is a simple equation.


  1. You are capable of anything – it is your mindset that matters more than anything.

Our Campus Leaders, Mary and Santoro have spoken about that so well. If you want to learn more about mindsets, read Mary and Santoro’s Campus Captains’ address at the end of this article.


2018 Year Level Dux

Congratulations to the following students who have been awarded the 2018 Dux of their respective year levels. 

Year 7 – Alexandra Williams 

Year 8 – Jesse Cochran 

Year 9 – Alyanna Trajano (Awarded at Beaconsfield Campus)


SunSmart App

SunSmart has an app, see UV, which uses augmented reality to depict what your skin could look like if you don’t protect it in the sun. We actively encourage all within our community to use a combination of sun protection measures during the daily sun protection times and remind everyone of the need to slip, slop, slap, seek and slide.


Slip, Slop, Slap

One of the most successful health campaigns in Australia’s history was launched by Cancer Council in 1981. Sid the seagull, wearing board shorts, t-shirt and a hat, tap-danced his way across our TV screens singing a catchy jingle to remind us of three easy ways of protecting against skin cancer.

You might remember Sid singing,

Slip, Slop, Slap! It sounds like a breeze when you say it like that Slip, Slop, Slap! In the sun we always say ‘Slip Slop Slap!’ Slip, Slop, Slap! Slip on a shirt, slop on sunscreen and slap on a hat, Slip, Slop, Slap! You can stop skin cancer – say: Slip, Slop, Slap!

Most skin cancer can be prevented by using good sun protection. I encourage you to talk to your children about the importance of wearing sunscreen.


This month on SchoolTV – School Transitions

Whether it is starting school for the first time, moving up to a higher grade or embarking on a journey through secondary school, there is no doubt that any school transition is a very exciting time for children and parents. It means your children are growing up!

However, transitioning is an ongoing process. It can continue long after students have entered their new environment and may encounter difficulties at a number of different stages. These stressors may appear as anxiety and frustration and result in negative or disruptive behaviours. Such behaviours can become problematic making the transitioning process even more difficult for children and parents.

In this edition of SchoolTV, parents will learn practical strategies to assist your child during the transition process and reduce stress and anxiety levels. We hope you take time to reflect on the information offered in this month’s edition and we always welcome your feedback.

If you have any concerns about your child, please contact our College counsellor for further information.

Here is the link to this month’s edition


Lisa Harkin

Deputy Principal – Head of Campus – Officer



Are you interested in hosting a Japanese exchange student in 2019?

We have 27 Japanese students coming to St Francis Xavier College Berwick and Officer Campuses from 7th-19th March who all need Host Families!

If you are interested please email Mrs Bamford ( for an application form ASAP.


Closed Circuit Television (CCTV)

Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) is a proven crime prevention tool that greatly improves risk management controls and personal safety of students, staff and visitors. The College has installed CCTV for detecting and deterring vandalism, unauthorised entry into school buildings, theft and other unwanted activities at the Berwick. Officer and Beaconsfield Campuses. The management, operation and use of the system is governed by the school’s privacy policy, CCTV protocol and the relevant state and federal legislation. CCTV cameras are not installed in private areas such as toilets or change rooms and the College has no hidden or covert cameras. CCTV footage is only available to the College Leadership but may be provided to relevant law enforcement agencies to assist in their investigations in accordance with relevant State and Federal Legislation.

If you have any queries in reference to the operation of the CCTV system at the College, please contact Mr John Fazzino – Deputy Principal: Mission.


First Campus Captain Speech – 2019

Mary Wijewardene

Good morning Mr Feeney, parents, staff, distinguished guests and students. My name is Mary Wijewardene and this is Santoro Kep. We are the Officer Campus Captains for 2019. To our new staff, teachers and students, I welcome you into this family, and I am sure you will enjoy your time at St Francis Xavier College. To our new Year 7s, on behalf of the staff and students, I want to welcome you into our family. I know your time at St Francis Xavier College will be as fun as mine has been.

My advice to you is to make the most of all the opportunities you have here at St Francis Xavier College. Leave Officer Campus with no regrets; become involved in everything you can and don’t be afraid to give something a go. Trust me you will thank yourself later for getting involved now.

It is an honor to stand before each of you today. 2019 is going to be an extraordinary year for everyone within our community. This year, our College theme is “We Grow Together.”

All of us are in the process of growing. Growing is what we strive to achieve.

 But what does this word “growth” mean?

 If you look up the word “growth” in the dictionary, it said “the process of increasing in size.” It sounds like the definition is referring to growth in someone or something’s physical size. However, we aren’t talking about growing physically, we’re talking about the mental and spiritual growing that we can all achieve when we work together.

 For example, as a faith community we grow when we listen to the Word of God. As a community, we are invited to participate in prayer and meditation each day.

The Positive Learning Partnerships help our relationships to strengthen and grow. The Positive Learning Partnerships also talk about how important it is to put effort into your work, to make the most of opportunities and to persist when the work gets hard and you would prefer to give up.

This year is not only about our growth as individuals, but it is also about the growth of our community.

This can be broken down in many ways.

We strive to grow together in our words and actions this year.

We will grow as people and all of us have the potential to grow to achieve goals in our learning.

Growing together means helping each other, guiding each other, working together as whole not just as individuals. Every person seated here today is a limited edition.

Each person has their unique qualities, gifts and talents.

Each person present here today can become a better person; a better athlete; a better musician.

Each person present here today can strive for academic excellence. The challenge is to use your unique gifts and talents to help other people and the environment.


Santoro Kep

As Campus Captains, Mary and I will support each other throughout our journey as leaders.

Mary and I want to better ourselves and to be the best versions of ourselves that we can be.

Mary and I want to reach our full potential as leaders of our community and as learners.

By working together, we are gaining new skills, knowledge and improving as leaders and individuals. Being Campus Captains doesn’t mean that we are perfect. We will learn new things from not just our experiences but from each other and everyone around us. You see, all of you will help us to grow too.

There will be times when we lose hope or encounter tough times and challenges, but we will try to stay optimistic.

We will strive to achieve our personal best no matter what.

I want to share a secret with you… disadvantage and slower growth speeds won’t stop you if you persist with your learning and approach your learning with curiosity. Your gains and your personal growth will come from your effort, hard work and struggle.


Mary Wijewardene

Each person here grows at different speeds, areas and ways acknowledging this makes it easier to learn. Growing doesn’t just happen overnight, it takes time and it all starts as soon as you are open to doing so.

You see, there are two different mindsets. There is a growth mindset and a fixed mindset. The two sound very similar but they are very different.

A fixed mindset is where a person believes their skills and talents are satisfactory. This may cause the person to resist learning and trying to improve. This may cause the person to feel embarrassed when asking a question when they are feeling confused.

A growth mindset; however, is where a person knows they can develop their skills and their talents through efforts and persistence. People with a growth mindset will often ask questions, try diverse learning methods and take challenges.

Nonetheless, all of us will experience mistakes while learning. Sometimes this may cause you to lose your ambition.  Albert Einstein once said that, “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” To all of the students here today, please try something new this year.


Santoro Kep

Alone we can do so little but working together we can achieve so much more. Helping to create a positive impact for others can build a stronger relationship with our teachers and peers. Leading by example can change a person’s view on a situation and can motivate someone to grow.

With character strengths such as perseverance, you can use perseverance to take challenges and experience something new like a different SIS sport and it might even affect the community such as your friends and teammates when you inspire them to try something new and experience more.

No matter how little or big your goals may seem, every goal you accomplish brings you closer to being the best person you can possibly be. All you need is a growth mindset and people around you that will allow and support you to grow.

This is what both Mary and I would like to see in every individual in this very school; to support each other to develop and grow, and to come together as a whole school not just as individuals.

We look forward to getting to know you more over the course of the year.

Thank you for electing us to serve you.

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