ENROLMENTS

LATEST NEWS

OCTOBER 2021

AG STUDENTS PREPARE FOR UPPER HUNTER BEEF BONANZA

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Students from St Paul's Agriculture Team are enthusiastically preparing for the upcoming Upper Hunter Beef Bonanza to be held in Scone later in October.   

The team, students from Years 7 to 12,  have been working with this group of cattle for a little over four months.  With the assistance and support of the College's Agricultural staff the team has halter-trained the steers, groomed them and tracked their growth with regular weigh-ins.   The Ag Team work outside, in their own time, before and after school (and are therefore pictured out of uniform and maskless). 

Ag students have the opportunity, in Years 11 and 12, to study for nationally recognised and accredited qualifications in Primary Industries as part of their regular Higher School Certificate study program.  They graduate with the HSC as well as a Certificate II in Primary Industries which provides with skills, training and qualifications that will give them a head start looking for a job or further training.

SEPTEMBER 2021

WORKPLACE TRAINING SUCCESS FOR ST PAUL'S COLLEGE

One of the success stories at St Paul’s Catholic College in Kempsey has been the work placement program. 

A Leader of Learning and the College’s Careers Advisor, Darran Stephens, said preparing young people for the workplace is a particular focus of the College.

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He said while on the job learning has been challenging during COVID one of the Year 11 Construction students, Joel Megaloconomos, has been working with John Rootes Plumbing.

 “The College is very grateful to the many businesses who take on St Paul’s students as it makes such a difference for our students to experience the real workplace”, said Darran.

 “Working in partnership with Mid Coast Connect has also been a contributor to the success of our program”.

St Paul’s Vocational Education and Training, or VET, courses offer Year 11 and 12 students the opportunity to study for nationally recognised and accredited qualifications as part of their regular Higher School Certificate study program.

The College currently offers three VET courses: Hospitality Operations, Construction and Primary Industries. These courses count towards the HSC and, upon successful completion of their Year 12 studies, students receive a Certificate II in their chosen area. 

Australia's top VET school in 2020

In 2020, the College was recognised as Australia’s top school VET program. 

While work placement is important, the students undertaking the Certificate II in Construction also take advantage of the high quality facilities available on the College campus.

Darran said the College has a purpose-built construction teaching facility where students learn skills that enable them to work effectively and sustainably in the construction industry.

Pictured above are Year 11 VET student, Joel Megaloconomos (right) is pictured with Justin Hodgekiss of John Rootes Plumbing.

AUGUST 2021

SKILLS, TRAINING AND QUALIFICATIONS AT ST PAUL'S COLLEGE

The outstanding work placement program at St Paul’s Catholic College, Kempsey, is just one of the initiatives that sets the College’s students up for a successful future. 

Two Year 12 students, Flynn McGoldrick and Radley Schubert, recently undertook work experience at Towal Creek Station.  Towal Creek, which is managed by former St Paul’s student, Newman Hollis, has hosted students over a number of years.  During the work placement, Flynn and Radley had plenty of opportunities to further develop their stock handling skills at the Station which is located approximately 70km from Kempsey in the picturesque upper reaches of our beautiful valley.

Graham Bramley, Leader of Vocational Education and Training at St Paul’s, said that he is extremely grateful to Towal Creek Station and all the businesses in the Macleay that work with the College to develop valuable skills in the students and prepare them for the workplace.  Graham said that as a teacher it is truly gratifying to see a former student like Newman taking our students on work placement. 

TOP VET PROGRAM IN AUSTRALIA
In 2020, St Paul’s College won the Australian Training Awards School Pathways to VET Award making it the top VET program in Australia.  It was selected for the quality of its teaching staff and the exceptional standard of its innovative and high quality programs in Primary Industries, Construction and Hospitality.

Graham said that establishing and maintaining stakeholder partnerships, with companies including Towal Creek Station, was vital in the College’s program to provide solid career opportunities for students.  The Vocational Education and Training (VET) program at St Paul’s offers Years 11 and 12 students the opportunity to attain the nationally recognised and accredited qualifications, the Certificate II in Primary Industries, Hospitality or Construction as part of their regular Higher School Certificate study program

Graham said the courses provide students with skills, training and qualifications that give them a head start in their career or further training.

JULY 2021

TERM 3 COVID RESTRICTIONS

Message from the Principal

JUNE 2021

ST PAUL’S CELEBRATES NAIDOC WEEK

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The acronym NAIDOC stands for National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance Committee.

NAIDOC Week is celebrated by all Australians this year from Sunday 4 July to Sunday 11 July and is a great opportunity for the St Paul's community to learn more about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) communities.

As NAIDOC Week celebrates the history, culture and achievements of ATSI peoples it is important that we recognise and acknowledge the traditional owners of the land we inhabit. The land on which the College is built is Dunghutti country. Dunghutti country is made up of eight tribal groups that reside in the Macleay Valley region. Theirs is a proud Mob, re-establishing culture, language and custom through organisations such as Saltwater Freshwater, Kinchela Boys Home Corp., Dunghutti Elders Council and SWR Figtree Descendants Ab. Corp. (to name only a few). It is through locally run organisations that the biggest achievements in their direction towards cultural consolidation have been observed as they ‘Heal Country!’  

St Paul's will increase awareness
The Dunghutti history is one that includes disruption by white settlers and saw the traditional owners lose rights to their land. However on 9 October 1997 the Dunghutti people became the first Aboriginal nation to win land under native title legislation on mainland Australia - a truly commendable achievement as a consequence of an unfortunate history.  

St Paul's will continue to promote and increase awareness of the history, culture and achievements of the traditional owners, the proud Dunghutti. On Friday 25 June we celebrated NAIDOC Week as a community with music, food, language, cultural activities and games and as we promoted this year’s theme ‘Heal Country!’

We encourage our students and community to get involved in celebrating NAIDOC Week during the school holidays.  https://www.naidoc.org.au/ has wonderful resources to assist you in your celebrations.

FATHER AND SON BOOK CLUB

St Paul’s College is very excited to be introducing the Father and Son Book Club initiative!

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To listen to Year 12 Student Will Butler, Mathematics Teacher Darren Love and Literacy Coach Dane Smith speak about the benefits of reading and the role reading plays in shaping their understanding of the world please click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hGdIwRt-VBg                                 

For more information on the initiative or to register your interest email dane.smith@lism.catholic.edu.au

“The most effective way to get boys reading is for them to read with a male role model at home.”

The book chosen for the Father and Son Book Club is "Facing Up".  Limited copies of Facing Up are available at the school library and will be lent on a first-come first-served basis.

Facing Up by Bear Grylls can be purchased  as a standalone novel at the following link: https://www.booktopia.com.au/facing-up-bear-grylls/book/9780330392266.html ($33.75 paperback or $16.99 EBOOK)

Alternatively, readers can save money by purchasing Bear Grylls: Two All Action adventures – Facing Up and Facing the Frozen Ocean here: https://www.booktopia.com.au/bear-grylls-bear-grylls/book/9781447274421.html ($9.99 paperback or $16.99 EBOOK)

APRIL 2021

WELCOME TO OPEN DAY - THURSDAY 29 APRIL

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Would you like to explore the College's beautiful campus and learn about the special values that underpin a St Paul's Catholic College education?  Then head to St Paul's College on Sea Street, Kempsey this Thursday 29 April between 4pm and 6.30pm.

Between 4pm and 5pm our College Captains (pictured here are the 2021 Captains Patrick Cotter, Jye Woodger, Emily Brenton and Phoebe Bramley) who will be among students leading tours of the campus.  Our coffee shop will be open and you can experience the College at work as staff and students demonstrate their skills.

At 5.30pm, our College Principal, David Johns will speak to families in the College Hall.   David and our senior staff will be available to meet with families and answer your questions about the quality academic care offered at the College.

ST PAUL'S COLLEGE IS ON THE ROAD 

St Paul's College senior leadership team, including the College Principal, David Johns, will be visiting South West Rocks and Macksville in April. 

Current parents and parents interested in finding out more about the quality education offered at St Paul's College are welcome to meet with the team.

SOUTH WEST ROCKS
Monday 19 April, 5pm to 6pm 
Catholic Church Hall, Gregory Street

MACKSVILLE
Wednesday 21 April, 5pm to 6pm
St Patrick's School Hall, Macksville Heights Drive

If you would like further information, please call 6562 7200.

MARCH 2021

NEW P&F COMMITTEE KEEN TO START BUILDING COMMUNITY

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Jodie O'Loughlin was elected as the President of the St Paul's College P&F at the AGM held on Wednesday 17 March. 

Joined by the Mayor of the Kempsey Shire Council, Liz Campbell, the Committee listened to a keynote address by the new College Principal, David Johns and met the new Assistant Principal, Geoff Melville.

Bronwyn Shipton, the Assistant Principal, Mission and Wellbeing, also attended the meeting.  

Pictured left, with the College Principal, David Johns and the Macleay Valley Parish Priest, Fr James Foster are the 2021 P&F Committee members:

Jodene Barnett (Assistant Secretary), Sarah Osborne (Vice President). Deanna Peters(Secretary), David Johns (Principal) Fr James Foster (Parish Priest) , Jodie O'Loughlin (President), Kylie O'Donnell (Treasurer), Angela Bramley (Vice President)

SWIMMING CHAMPS

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The dedication and hard work of St Paul’s students have resulted in outstanding results at the NSW Country Swimming Championships.

As members of the Kempsey Swimming Club the students’ training involves seven swimming sessions and two land sessions each week. The students are (back row) Keeley Smith, Brielle Woodger and Jake Worthing with (front row) Adam Grant and Max Farrell.

Year 10 student, Max Farrell, achieved three top 10 finishes, eight personal bests and two club records in the 100m backstroke and the 800m freestyle.  As a result of his record at the Championships Max has qualified in the 400 free in the 16 year age category for the Australian Age Swimming Championships and the Australian Swimming Championships to be held in April.

Keeley achieved three personal bests and two top 10 finishes and Brielle had two top ten finishes, four personal bests and broke a club record in the 100m freestyle.  Jake Worthing achieved five personal bests and Adam Grant had a top 10 finish in the 400m individual medley.  Adam Grant swam eight out of ten personal bests during this swimming meet and has qualified for the NSW state open. He placed 5th in the 400m IM.

FEBRUARY 2021

UNIQUE TRAINEESHIP AT ST PAUL'S COLLEGE

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Craig McGoldrick, who graduated from St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College, Kempsey, in 2020 has commenced an innovative traineeship at the College.

For the first time, the College is offering a traineeship in Horticulture.  Craig, who is now employed full-time at St Paul’s, will also study at TAFE with the aim of attaining a Certificate II in Horticulture. 

Craig said he is excited to commence his twelve month traineeship this week.  He will work with a variety of staff helping to manage the College’s extensive gardens and playing fields.

“I love being out in nature and am looking forward to the traineeship,” said Craig. 

A keen photographer, Craig said one of the challenges of being a recent graduate and then starting work at the College is getting used to calling staff by their first names and using the staff room facilities.   

Each year, the College offers a range of traineeships to recent graduates.  This year, the traineeships are in Sport, Horticulture and Youth Ministry.  

College Principal, David Johns, said St Paul’s staff work hard to ensure that students are ready for work, university or further studies when they leave the College. 

“Thanks to the support of local businesses, we have a strong work placement and internship program,” said David.

SPORTSPERSON OF THE YEAR

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St Paul’s College Year 10 student and champion swimmer, Max Farrell, has been selected as the 2020 Kempsey Macleay RSL Club's Sportsperson of the Year.

Max, who is the Kempsey Swimming Club Captain, trains more than 15 hours a week at Kempsey’s McElhone Pool.

He recently competed in the NSW State Age Championships at Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre at Homebush where he competed in the 400 metres freestyle and 100 metre fly and back where he placed in the top 15 in the state.

Max won a much coveted Top 10 Ribbon and placing for his 800 metres free.  This swim broke a long standing Kempsey Swimming Club record for open men's 800 free at the age of 15.

Max hopes that he gets the chance to compete in Sydney this season at the NSW Country Championships and the NSW State Open Championships.

(Acknowledgement to the Macleay Argus for this story)

JANUARY 2021

FIRST SCHOOL DAY FOR NEW PRINCIPAL

David Johns, who has taken up the position of Principal of St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College, Kempsey in 2021, brings more than 30 years’ experience across diverse teaching and leadership positions throughout Australia and the United Kingdom.

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David’s previous leadership positions have included Principal of St John’s Catholic College Darwin, Principal of the Islamic School of Canberra, Assistant Principal of John Paul II College and St Mary Mackillop College, Canberra and Head of Year 12 and Science Teacher at St Andrews Cathedral School in Sydney.

With degrees that include a Master of Educational Leadership, a Master of Theology and a Graduate Diploma of Adolescent Health, David believes that a school’s success relies on challenging students and staff to achieve potential within a safe environment which is relevant to regional concerns as well that of the wider world of work.

He brings to the College a vision of Catholic education that is inclusive, social justice focused and explicit in its expectations and how it is to be seen by others within the wider society.

David said that St Paul’s is an amazing school. Our patron St Paul invigorates in us all an understanding that vulnerability can been seen as a strength. When vulnerable we reach out, we ask for help, we strive to know more, be more and these are skills that will prepare us well for the ‘world of work’. St Paul’s is all about being inclusive and accepting vulnerability in a safe supportive community that inspires a future of hope for all those under our care.

“I am fortunate to step into a role surrounded by a committed staff, aspirational students and a supportive local community,” said David.

David believes that Catholic education involves embracing all who we encounter with empathy, love, and a validation of their lived experience. It is about acknowledging fears and frailties and accepting that through a community of believers we have the capability to realise the best of ourselves and of humanity.


I look forward to walking with the St Paul’s community, listening, understanding and supporting the College teaching staff to provide experiences that will allow our students to achieve their very best in all they do.

2020 GRADUATES OFFERED UNIQUE WORK OPPORTUNITIES AT ST PAUL'S COLLEGE

Jack Mealing, who graduated from St Paul's College in 2020, will commence work as a trainee sports assistant at St Paul's Catholic College in 2021 and Ebaney Cook will take up the position of Youth Ministry Officer.  

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Each year the College invites applications from Year 12 students for a number of 12 month trainee and Youth Ministry Officer positions.  The positions are advertised in Term 3 and the applicants undergo a normal job interview.

The traineeships offer students a unique opportunity to experience work life before making decisions about their careers or study options. Jack and Ebaney, who will undertake a course to prepare them for the roles, are paid employees of the College.

Jack said he believes he will be able to relate well to the students and pass on his passion for sports.  At the end of the year, Jack wants to pursue a career in mechanics or the military.

Ebaney sees the 12 month position as a Youth Ministry Officer as an opportunity to develop her own faith journey as well as helping students to develop their own faith.  She believes she can instil her leadership qualities in young students and looks forward to making a difference in their lives.  

NOVEMBER 2020

ST PAUL’S COLLEGE EX STUDENT IRONMAN FINALIST

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St Paul’s College ex-student, Finn Askew, has qualified for the 2020/2021 Kellogg’s Nutri-Grain Ironman Series.

Finn, who graduated from St Paul's College in 2019, qualified for the Ironman Series on 29 November.

100 athletes battled it out across six races over two days with the top eight finishers across males and females earning a place in the prestigious Series beginning on December 19 at Kingscliff, NSW.

Finn, who now lives in Queensland, represents the Surfers Paradise Surf Life Saving Club.  

An outstanding athlete, Finn represented St Paul's in surfing, swimming, cross country running and many other sporting events throughout his six years at the College.

All current and former students and staff wish Finn every success in the Kellog’s Nutri-Grain Ironman Series 2020/2021 which will televised nationally. 

ST PAUL’S COLLEGE WINS NATIONAL VET AWARD 

St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College, Kempsey has won the 2020 Australian Training Awards School Pathways to VET Award which was announced on Friday 20 November.

St Paul’s was selected for the quality of its teaching staff and the exceptional standard of its innovative and high quality programs in Primary Industries, Construction and Hospitality.

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The then Principal of St Paul’s College, Kevin Lewis, said that the College’s focus on establishing and maintaining stakeholder partnerships has been critical in not only winning the award but most importantly in giving solid career opportunities for students.

Pictured are St Paul's College VET students, Charlie Brenton (Hospitality), Lachlan Dowling (Construction) and Flynn McGoldrick (Primary Industries) with form Principal, Kevin Lewis

Kevin said that the Vocational Education and Training (VET) program for Years 11 and 12 students at St Paul’s is St Paul's is highly admired and sought after.

Meet some of St Paul's outstanding VET graduates 

“It offers students the opportunity to attain the nationally recognised and accredited qualification, Certificate II in Primary Industries, Hospitality or Construction as part of their regular Higher School Certificate study program”, said Kevin.

“The course provides students with skills, training and qualifications that gives them a head start in their career or further training.”

Graham Bramley, Agriculture Teacher and Leader of Vocational Education and Training, said the College’s 105 hectare College Farm gives Primary Industry students opportunities to learn skills including fencing, how to grow crops, drive tractors and farm management. The College also operates Tallowood Stud on the Farm where the students breed Devon cattle.

Students participating in the Hospitality course have a state-of-the-art industrial kitchen in the McAuley Centre while students undertaking Construction have outstanding facilities in the Ignatius Construction Centre.

The School Pathways to VET Award recognises eligible organisations including schools, registered training organisations group training organisations, industry bodies and employers that have collaboratively delivered one or more excellent vocational education and training (VET) programs to secondary school students.

PAT CONAGHAN MP LAUNCHES ASSOCIATION FOR ST PAUL'S EX-STUDENTS

On Tuesday 17 November, the Member for Cowper, Pat Conaghan MP, who is an ex-student of St Paul's College, officially launched the College's Alumni Association.

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Pat said it gave him great pleasure to officially launch the Association. He also launched the Alumni Association for St Joseph's Catholic Primary School. He said the purpose of an alumni group was to promote the association and the institution. However, he said that St Paul’s alumni group was much more than an association.

“It is a continuation of your Christian values, a continuation of community,” said Pat.

Pat said there were 208 boys in his year at the boarding school he attended from Year 9, but he only keeps in contact with two fellow students.

“We had less than 50 in my class in Year 8 in Kempsey and I keep in contact with most of them”, said Pat.

He said this is what community means in Kempsey and in smaller regions.

Pat said that both St Paul’s and St Joseph's punch above their weight in terms of graduates.

“It’s more than having graduates who are doctors, lawyers, members of parliament, farmers, retail workers, it’s all about keeping the community together and being proud of being someone from St Paul’s, someone from St Joseph’s, from St Pius. It’s about continuing that legacy and promoting those institutions”, said Pat.

Among the guests attending the launch was Colin Hudson. Colin completed most of his primary years at St Joseph’s and was in the first intake of students at St Paul’s in 1965. He said it was great for he and his classmates in Year 7 as they were senior class and hence were the school and house captains for all four years of secondary school. He said both of his daughters attended St Paul’s and like him were captains of the same sporting house.

Relationships to be cherished and remembered
In his welcome to the launch of the Alumni Associations, Kevin Lewis, former Principal of St Paul’s College, which opened in 1965, said schools are not just pallid, lifeless buildings, designed to fill 13 years lives with texts and formulas.

“They are important micro-communities which hold memories, relationships and histories that need to be cherished and remembered,” said Kevin.

“The launching of these Alumni associations today will be an important step in preserving and promoting those memories and bringing ex-students together in community with each other,” said Kevin

During the launch, Kevin Lewis said that St Paul’s College opened in 1965 for boys in years 5, 6 and 7. He said it has changed during the last 55 years. At first the Christian Brothers educated boys from Years 5 to Year 10. To complete Year 12, students then had to attend a boarding or local secondary school. In 1973, the girls’ school, St Pius X, was established on the same campus but run as a separate school. In 1980, the two schools amalgamated and adopted the name Macleay Regional Catholic High School. In 1985, the name reverted to St Paul’s College. He said that students who attended all these schools are welcome to join the St Paul’s College Alumni Association.

“By 1991 the College was offering Year 11 and in 1992 our first HSC graduates emerged and since then St Paul’s College has been producing some of the finest, I believe the finest graduates in the Valley”, said Kevin.

Kevin noted that Catholic secondary education was available for girls at St Philomena’s Catholic High School from around the 1920’s. St Philomena’s was on the same campus as St Joseph’s Primary School.

To join the St Paul's Alumni Association visit https://www.kmpslism.catholic.edu.au/about-us/alumni

Pictured above at the launch on 17 November are Beth Barnett (ex-student of St Joseph's and St Pius X), Jye Woodger (one of St Paul's College Captains), Federal Member for Cowper, Pat Conaghan MP, Colin Hudson (ex-student of St Joseph's and St Paul's College) and Gracie Campbell (St Joseph's Catholic Primary School).

YOUNG ABORIGINAL ARTIST'S PAINTING INSPIRES ST PAUL'S STAFF

To acknowledge and celebrate the Dunghutti Nation, the staff of St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College asked young Dunghutti artist, Jason Ridgeway, to paint his story of the Dunghutti Nation.  The staff then used the design for their staff shirts.

The Dunghutti Nation's totem is the Praying Mantis (Gurginj Gurginj) which is shown in the painting looking over the Macleay Valley.   The painting shows the beginning of the Macleay River from Walcha then as it flows through Bellbrook before it flows into the Ocean.  The painting also shows Sugarloaf Mountain, known as Barralbarayi, which is a sacred place for the Dunghutti People.

Jason, who was born and lives in Kempsey, describes himself as a proud Dunghutti man.  He says his paintings are inspired by the stories he was told by his elders and by his family.  

Jason says he cherishes his culture and he loves to get out and learn about the land.

OCTOBER 2020

YEAR 8 STUDENTS WIN TOP SPORTS AWARDS

For the first time in almost two decades, Year 8 students have won both of the coveted Sports Woman and Sports Man of the Year awards at St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College.

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Darcy Swaine, who was awarded the “Lou’s Café Restaurant Award for Sportsman of the Year”, said he believes he won because he is an ‘all-rounder’. While he excels at most sports, soccer is his favourite.

The “C&C Cavanagh Award for Sports Woman of the Year” was awarded to Ruby Trappel who said a lot of credit goes to her parents who have supported her travelling to sporting events for many years.  Ruby loves riding her horse Perry and has achieved outstanding results in athletics and netball.

Former Principal of St Paul’s College, Kevin Lewis said that while students at St Paul’s are known for achieving outstanding academic results, sport plays a critical role in the development of students.

“Sport is very important at St Paul’s as we believe in developing the whole student, academically, emotionally, spiritually and physically,” said Kevin.

“Sport supports positive mental health and improves social skills.”

“We hope to develop a lifelong interest in physical and mental well-being in our students”, said Kevin.

COLLEGE'S TOP AWARDS TO OUTSTANDING STUDENTS

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St Paul's College Year 12 students, Abbey Livermore and Liam King, have been presented with the College's top awards for 2020.

Abbey received the Catherine McAuley Award for the Female Student of the Year and Liam King received the Edmund Rice Award for the Male Student of the Year.  

Along with the Female Student of the Year Award, Abbey's academic achievements were recognised with other awards including excellence awards in English and Mathematics.   Abbey said that receiving the Student of the Year award was her proudest achievement.  She is planning to study psychology at the University of New South Wales.

Liam believes he achieved the Male Student of the Year Award for the hard work he has put into his studies and also his leadership.  Liam, who also received an Academic Excellence Award, said he also has worked hard to be a leader in the College community.  Liam plans to study Civil Engineering at the University of New South Wales.

Both Abbey and Liam have received conditional offers from the University of New South Wales.

CANCER FOCUS FOR STUDENTS AND STAFF

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In the coming weeks, St Paul’s will be actively promoting the youth cancer organisation, CanTeen, and learning how it can support our community. 

As a College, we value the wellbeing of our students and through CanTeen hope to educate them about the availability of this valued service.  As a staff we will be made aware of how to assist students who are struggling with cancer, either their own or that of a loved one.

What will be happening?

  • ZOOM presentations for pastoral care staff, general staff and students
  • Small group intervention for students in need
  • Bandanna Day Friday 30th October
  • Parents wanting to discuss the program further please email Mrs Belinda Mainey on bemainey@lism.catholic.edu.au

What is CanTeen?

  • A support organisation that helps young people, from 12 – 25, cope with cancer in their family.
  • For further information about CanTeen please visit https://www.canteen.org.au/

SEPTEMBER 2020

ST PAUL'S VET HOSPITALITY GRADUATES OPEN NEW KEMPSEY BUSINESS

Two graduates of St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College’s Certificate II in Hospitality course have opened their own business.

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Zodiac Coffee Co., which opened on 28 August this year, is a coffee cart located on the Macleay Valley Way adjacent to the Kempsey Information Centre and Museum.

While the Zodiac coffee cart may be a small beginning, Laura Raison and Bailey Harris have big dreams for their future in hospitality.

Laura and Bailey both graduated from St Paul’s with a Certificate II in Hospitality in 2015.

 Laura said that her work placement at Tumblegum Bake House and Cafe, which was part of her Hospitality course, and subsequent employment in hospitality on the Gold Coast gave her the experience and passion for the industry.

“I worked as a baker for Coles on the Gold Coast and then with South Coast Coffee Co. which gave me an in-depth knowledge of all aspects of coffee,” said Laura.

 Laura employs her sister Trinity, who is also a graduate of St Paul’s College, and is studying to be an English teacher at Charles Sturt University. 

Zodiac Coffee Co. is open Monday to Friday from 6.30am to 12.30pm.  On weekends you can often find the Zodiac van at local events. 

National recognition for VET program at St Paul’s
St Paul’s College has been selected as one of three finalists in the 2020 Australian

Training Awards School Pathways to VET Award.

The then Principal of St Paul’s, Kevin Lewis, said that the Vocational Education and Training (VET) program for Years 11 and 12 students at St Paul’s is unique in the Valley.

“It offers students the opportunity to attain the nationally recognised and accredited qualification, Certificate II in Primary Industries, Hospitality or Construction as part of their regular Higher School Certificate study program”, said Kevin.

“The course provides students with skills, training and qualifications that gives them a head start in their career or further training.”

The winner of the Award will be announced on Friday 20 November. 

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NATIONAL RECOGNITION FOR ST PAUL'S COLLEGE VET PROGRAM

St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College, Kempsey has been selected as one of three finalists in the 2020 Australian Training Awards School Pathways to VET Award.

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As a finalist in this prestigious annual Award, St Paul’s has been selected for the quality of its teaching staff and the exceptional standard of its innovative and high quality programs in Primary Industries, Construction and Hospitality.

Principal of St Paul’s College, Kevin Lewis (Principal until 2020), said that the College’s focus on establishing and maintaining stakeholder partnerships has been critical in not only becoming a finalist but most importantly in giving solid career opportunities for students.

Kevin said that the Vocational Education and Training (VET) program for Years 11 and 12 students at St Paul’s is unique in the Valley.

“It offers students the opportunity to attain the nationally recognised and accredited qualification, Certificate II in Primary Industries, Hospitality or Construction as part of their regular Higher School Certificate study program”, said Kevin.

Head start in their career
“The course provides students with skills, training and qualifications that gives them a head start in their career or further training.”

Graham Bramley, Agriculture Teacher and Leader of Vocational Education and Training, said the College’s 105 hectare College Farm gives Primary Industry students opportunities to learn skills including fencing, how to grow crops, drive tractors and farm management.  The College also operates Tallowood Stud on the Farm where the students breed Devon cattle. 

 Students participating in the Hospitality course have a state-of-the-art industrial kitchen in the McAuley Centre while students undertaking Construction have outstanding facilities in the Ignatius Construction Centre.  

The School Pathways to VET Award recognises eligible organisations including schools, registered training organisations group training organisations, industry bodies and employers that have collaboratively delivered one or more excellent vocational education and training (VET) programs to secondary school students.

 The winner of the Award will be announced on Friday 20 November. 

BUILDING FUTURES FOR LOCAL STUDENTS

A workplace partnership between St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College and Kempsey’s iconic business, Akubra, has resulted in three ex-students of St Paul’s finding work. 

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According to Heath Sharman, Production Manager at Akubra, St Paul’s Colleges provides more than just excellent education for their students.

Mr Sharman congratulated the College for “educating good, decent young men who will be with the organisation for a long time”.

“It is not an exaggeration to say we faced challenges with an ageing workforce and no one to follow through to fill the void”, said Mr Sharman.

“The men working here are 25 to 40 year veterans and until recently we haven’t had anyone coming behind them to replace them as they retire,” said Mr Sharman.

Kevin Lewis, Principal at St Paul’s College (Principal until 2020), said he is very grateful the students have found meaningful work.

"St Paul’s offers a variety of academic options and caters for different styles of learning. Our focus is ensuring our students have access to facilities and support that enhance their education experience,” said Kevin.

“High school leaving age is now 17 years, so students have to stay in school until that time. Often this is not the best fit for them, so providing opportunities for them in both their course selection and work placement that gives meaning and purpose is so important,” said Mr Lewis.

The St Paul’s ex students who have found work with Akubra are (pictured from left) Jacob Kennedy, Matthew McLean and Joseph Jenkins.

AUGUST 2020

ADVICE TO PARENTS
Schools are operating full time while actively following health advice.  To ensure schools continue to be safe please read the following information: Advice to Families

TRAINEE’S AT ST PAUL’S COLLEGE ENJOY UNIQUE RELATIONSHIP WITH STUDENTS

Each year, students from St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College graduating class are invited to apply for traineeships at the College. Four students took up the positions this year, two as Youth Ministry Officers, one as an Aboriginal Liaison Trainee and the fourth as a Sports Trainee.

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Principal of St Paul’s College, Kevin Lewis (Principal until 2020), said the Traineeships offer the students a unique opportunity to experience work life before making decisions about their careers or study options.  Kevin said the trainees, who undertake a course to prepare them for the roles, are paid employees of the College.

“We advertise the positions in Term 3 and the applicants undergo a normal job interview,” said Kevin.

Sports popular at College
Damien Owens, who is the Sports Assistant Trainee, said it took a while for him to feel comfortable calling his former teachers by their first name.

“Some kids can’t wait to leave school, but here I am back at the College straight after graduating and I love helping with the sports program which is very popular with our students,” said Damien.

Damien, who plays rugby union and is a lifeguard at local beaches said he is planning to enrol in university next year.

Young Indigenous community leader
For the first time in 2020, the position of Aboriginal Education Officer Trainee was established. Young Indigenous community leader, Monique Brown, approached Kevin Lewis about establishing the position when she was still in Year 12.

Monique said she felt that the position would be of great value to the young Indigenous students at the College.

“A lot of the Indigenous students talk to me about the normal issues facing young people,” said Monique.

Monique, who studied Aboriginal Studies at St Paul’s in Years 11 and 12, works with the College’s Aboriginal Dance group and has established a fortnightly get together offering a safe space for girls to discuss issues of concern.

Youth Ministry offers unique opportunity
For Darcy O’Loughlin, who is planning to study for a degree in forensic science, the traineeship as a Youth Ministry Officer has given her the opportunity to learn about the work environment and to further explore her spirituality.  Calissa Denaro, also a Youth Ministry Officer, said that she and Darcy are in a unique position to relate to students.

“The students all know us, we’re young, they’re not scared to talk with us, and we know where they are coming from”, said Calissa.

Calissa plans commence her studies for a teaching degree next year.

(Pictured above from left are:  Damien Owens, Calissa Denaro, Monique Brown and Darcy O'Loughlin)

JULY 2020

ST PAUL'S STUDENTS PUT IN THE HARD YARDS ON THE FARM

At 4.00pm every Thursday afternoon a group of students from St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College, Kempsey head towards the College’s Francis Farm to hone their skills in working with cattle.  The students, from Years 7 to 12, work as a team to learn more about the cattle and running the farm.

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Graham Bramley, Agriculture Teacher and Leader of Vocational Education and Training at the College, said the students, who volunteer their time out of school hours, love working with the Farm’s herd of mainly Devon cattle.

“They learn how to get the cattle ready for competition including washing and brushing and then practice leading the cattle for the show ring,” said Graham.

Graham said the mix of ages and backgrounds means the students learn a lot from each other and develop a great team spirit.

The 105 hectare College Farm on North Street gives the students opportunities to learn other skills including fencing, how to grow crops, drive tractors and farm management.  The College also operates Tallowood Stud on the Farm where they breed Devon cattle. 

Unique in the Valley is the College’s Vocational Education and Training (VET) program for Years 11 and 12 students.   It offers the student’s the opportunity to attain the nationally recognised and accredited qualification, Certificate II in Agriculture, as part of their regular Higher School Certificate study program.

The course provides students with skills, training and qualifications that gives them a head start in their career or further training.

Pictured above is Year 11 student, Emma Pelling.

JUNE 2020

WORLD CLASS FACILITIES FOR ST PAUL'S

On 28 June 2020 the Hon. Melinda Pavey MP announced a State Government grant of $2.76 million to St Paul’s Catholic Secondary College, for the refurbishment of the current College Hall into a Performing Arts Centre and the construction of a Sports and Fitness Centre.

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The new Performing Arts Centre will have facilities for drama, music and dance.

Kevin Lewis, Principal of St Paul’s College (Principal until 2020), has expressed his desire for students in regional areas to have the same opportunities as students in the cities.

He said that the announcement marked the first stage of a four stage masterplan for St Pauls which is designed to bring the College community world-class teaching and learning facilities.

Kevin said that the buildings are designed also to be of benefit to the entire community.  

"Community is vitally important in small regional towns and we see ourselves as key contributors to that," said Kevin.  

Pictured left at the announcement of the grant are from left: Father James Foster (Macleay Valley Parish Priest) Corey Crotty (College Captain) Kevin Lewis (College Principal), Abbey Livermore (College Captain), Ron Mavin (College Captain) and the Hon. Melinda Pavey.

Learn more

JUNE 2020

ST PAUL'S COLLEGE SUCCESS AT WINGHAM BEEF WEEK
The St Paul’s College Agriculture Team was successful in winning Class 1 Lightweight Carcase 150 – 199.5 kg class at the recent Wingham Beef Week Carcase Competition.

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The winning steer, Topdeck, was an Angus, Charolais Cross steer bred at Valla by Noel, Kaye, Matthew and Rachel Rudder. Topdeck was prepared for competition by Matthia Rudder Year 7 and Cate Reardon Year 10.

The steer was nicknamed Topdeck due to his resemblance to the Cadbury chocolate. It achieved a carcase Index Score of 86.081 points, six points ahead of 2nd place Wallawong Murray Grey stud entry from Gunnedah.

St Paul’s Agriculture and Primary Industries teacher, Graham Bramley, was very happy with the winning steer’s results.

Graham said that all the College’s cattle performed well.

“The team will now focus on The Upper Hunter Beef Bonanza to be held in October, pending the Covid 19 restrictions being lifted.”

Graham says he is very proud of the Ag Team.

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“Our students are very committed to their training, all of which occurs in their own time on Tuesday mornings from 7.00am till 8.45am and Thursday afternoon from 3.30pm until 5.30pm.”

Graham said the College also have a great deal of support from our families and the local farming and business community.

“We put together this team of 14 steers back in November - December, during one of our countries worst droughts and amid the devastating bushfires.”

“I have to say that I am very humbled by the support and I am proud to live, work and be a part of such a generous and supportive community.”

The steer had an eye muscle area of 79 square cm, Rib and P8 Fat depth of 5mm and a meat colour of 3. Topdeck was 1.5 kg inside the 199.5kg weight limit for the category. The steer was grown on grain and grass for 137 days in total and had a growth rate of 1.32kg per day.

Pictured top left is the winning steer, Topdeck.

Pictured above are Year 10 student, Cate Reardon and Year 7 student Matthia Rudder

MAY 2020

EMILY'S SUCCESS AT INTERSCHOOL HORSE EXTRAVAGANZAS
Emily Shannon and her horse, Casino Crown Prince, took out some of the top prizes at the last two Interschool Horse Extravaganzas.

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In both 2018 and 2019 they won Champion Overall Senior Dressage. They also came second overall in the Senior Show Riding competition.

Emily, who is in Year 12 at St Paul’s, said that she has been training with Casino Crown Prince for the past five years. She plans to continue to ride Dressage throughout her years at University.

With six horses at home, Emily has to work to find a balance between her studies and her love of horses and competition.

Training means she is riding her top three horses for at least ten hours a week.

“I am a very competitive person, who loves to continually improve and I strive to be the best I can be”, said Emily.

Keeping the horses in top show condition means a lot of hard work. Emily feeds her horses twice a day and rugs them on a tight schedule.

APRIL 2020

ST PAUL'S STUDENTS EXCEL IN DRAMA
Critical thinking and learning to express and communicate ideas are just some of the skills that St Paul’s students learn in Drama.

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At St Paul’s College our students have excelled in drama competitions including Sport for Jove’s “Shakespeare Carnival” and the local Eisteddfods. For the last three years, our students have competed fiercely in The Shakespeare Carnival. This is a state wide competition involving all registered schools focusing on the works of William Shakespeare. The hard work and dedication of our students was rewarded with our students performing on the Seymour Centre stage in Sydney earning the title of State Champions in 2017 and Runner up State Champions in 2018.

The local Eisteddfod has always been competitive, allowing our students further opportunities to display their skills and engage with fellow like-minded students within the other local high schools. Returning to school with acclaimed trophies is certainly a bonus.

Year 10 student, Maxwell Winn said he loves his drama classes.  

"I love drama at St Paul’s because when we’re all together in that room we’re like a family and if one succeeds, all succeed.