Senior School Wednesday, 22 Sep 2021

2021 College Waste Audit

Together, the Sustainability Council and other interested students willing to dive into rubbish accomplished a College Waste Audit on Friday the 17th of September. This not so glamorous research provided an opportunity for the Council to collect data on the type, volume and location of waste across the college. You are probably wondering how this was done, and no students were not just pulling rubbish out of the bins and randomly sorting it — quite the opposite thanks to Rosie from Waste Wise Schools. The Waste Wise schools van pulled up with all the equipment we could ever need: tarps, many many tubs and buckets, tongs, gloves, soap and of course cleaning equipment for the end clean up!

Whilst some were setting up the scene other students were going around selecting a diverse range of bins from across the College. We settled on 7 wheelie bins emptying them onto the tarp for the many hands/tongs to sort through. Emptying the bins onto the tarp was not a pretty sight at all! Waste was sorted into 3 main categories — undegradable, recyclable and organic waste, which within them had separate sections such as snack wrappers, food scraps, paper and cardboard, aluminium, and plastic.

Sorting the waste took roughly a period and went fairly free of too much mess apart from the occasional stray projectile burger inbound for the food scraps bucket. During the sorting process, the boys found it very easy to fill the snack wrapper, plastic and general rubbish buckets already giving some insight before the data had even been collected. Once the mountain of waste was sorted into the various categories the true purpose of the waste audit came about, because after all, nobody wants to just sort rubbish for fun, we began collecting data.

From the data collected, food waste is the largest by weight and then general and plastic waste following closely behind with many little bundles of glad wrap. Surprisingly and even more so shockingly, whole unopened chip packets were discovered, whole packets of Oreos, many whole sandwiches and fruit, as well as drinks and, aside from food, Tupperware containers were also discovered – sorry parents these were not all the disposable kind! This data is hopefully going to be used by the council to pitch to the college systems to put in place to reduce waste, but this responsibility also lies with the students – they are the ones who need to take action on reducing the waste in our College.

So what can you do? It is fairly simple — be responsible consumers, not wasteful, only buy what you will eat and if you don’t eat it - take it home and let your parents know you don’t like certain things rather than throw them out. In short, think before you throw something out – offer it to mates or leave it for another day!

Read More
Senior School Friday, 17 Sep 2021

Diplomats in the Making

This term, 12 Aquinas students (Years 9 and 10) took part in the PSA Model United Nations. It is the second time the PSA has held this competition, this year the UN Youth have become involved which has only improved the event! Model United Nations or MUN is a competition that simulates the United Nations Security Council, where teams of three are assigned a specific country and hope to pass new resolutions into international law. Each PSA school was assigned a different country as can be seen below:

  • Aquinas- UK/Niger/Malaysia/Estonia
  • CCGS - Ireland/Vietnam/Tunisia
  • GGS - United States of America
  • Hale- India, St Vincent & Grenadines, Spain, Bolivia
  • Scotch - Russia/ New Zealand
  • Trinity - France, Mexico, South Korea, Australia
  • Wesley - China, Norway

This competition was so enjoyable as we were able to take on the persona and policies of the country we were representing. MUN incorporates skills such as negotiating, public speaking and teamwork. In the PSA MUN we had to pass two resolutions about; Artificial Intelligent Weapons and Privacy of Data in Sport. Although the Council failed to pass both of these due countries such as Russia and China exercising veto power, we still had an amazing experience.

In addition to this the Year 10 team of Matteo Conte, Ethan Dixon and Matthew Vinci won the competition as they were awarded the number one team on the evening! I was also awarded ‘best helper’ for my role on the evening assisting my teammates throughout the course of the events in various ways. This competition allowed all the PSA schools to compete in something that wasn’t a sport which led to a different dynamic and arguably more competitive side for all of the Aquinas students. We all had a great time and we hope more teams can get involved next year!

Read More
Senior School Friday, 27 Aug 2021

2021 MS & SS House Athletics Carnival

Congratulations to Durack House! Back-to-Back Senior School Athletics Champions. And Congratulations to Glowery House, the Middle School House Athletics Champions for 2021

Durack and Glowery Houses took out the 2021 House Athletics Carnivals on a perfect day at Memorial Oval. Coming off the back of an inspirational Australian Olympic campaign in Tokyo where former Aquinas students, such as Zac Incerti and Aran Zalewski, showed the Australian Olympic spirit, our Senior and Middle school students turned up in large numbers, proudly wearing their House colours in a terrific display of Aquinas College House spirit.

The competition was hard fought all day with excellent participation rates from all Years in all Houses. There were many standout performers on the day which gave Acting Head of Sport Kristian Leeson some optimism going into the PSA Athletics season.

What makes this day so great for me is seeing the enormous number of boys across the Year groups all out on Memorial Oval enjoying being a part of a spirit and culture that is centred around participation and giving it your best effort. So many boys step up into events to have a go and to compete in a friendly manner against mates, all while being supported and encouraged by peers and staff. It’s more than a day of activities for me, it’s a day where boys get to showcase their talent, skill, determination, and commitment.

These events don’t just happen, they take great work in the lead-up and during the carnival, I would firstly like to thank the students for getting involved in the day and behaving in a way that is respectful and highly competitive. I’d also like to thank all the staff for their determined help during the day, each event has at least 8 staff helping so thanks to those who raked sandpits, measured throws or timed races, your support is invaluable. Lastly thank you to the Heads of House and tutors for organising the students into their races and for fostering a House Spirit that encourages boys to participate and engage in the day.

Our sincere thanks are also extended to Trin Suckling for coordinating Farmers’ Food Festival along with the extended boarding communities support, this event was held on the same day as the House Athletics Carnival. In total $9,000 was raised on the day with some great food options for the students available along with some great raffles and prizes to be won. It proved to be an extremely successful occasion, it’s great to have the extra engagement of the Aquinas community to enhance the spectacle of the day.

Read More
Senior School Wednesday, 25 Aug 2021

She's Someone 2021

The She's Someone campaign is run by the Justice, Peace and Advocacy council to specifically target the disrespect towards women carelessly shown by too many young men – this can be shown through words, actions and thoughts. This campaign is about being clear on the ideal world in which we want to live and also about pointing out the types of behaviours we want to stamp out as a college. We aim to build up literacy surrounding the issue and empowering us, as young men, to be the ones to stand up when we see it happen at school, and in the community. The campaign is all about a conversation from young men to young men – about things that we can change.

Members of our Council have decided they will no longer be silent around such nonsense and they will invite their peers to speak out also. This is intended to be young men having what can be a tough or awkward conversation with other young men. Known as our “She's Someone” campaign, it looks at shifting the mindset of young men from accepting casual disrespect and objectification to being deliberately respectful and inclusive. The title “She's Someone” takes inspiration from the idea that you shouldn’t respect a woman just because “she is someone's daughter” or that “she is someone's mum”, but rather because she is her own person entitled to and worthy of respect in her own right.

Working together with all the Senior School Tutors, we offered all Senior Students the chance to participate in this campaign if they wish. They had a chance to take a stand, make a public commitment against disrespectful thoughts, comments and jokes about women. Or put more positively – they can stand up for a world where there is healthy respect and support between young men and women. Any young man that has participated, was permitted to swap their school tie for an alternative tie for the day on Wed 18th August. The young men were encouraged to wear their different ties with a mixture of pride and resolve. Pride that they are part of the campaign and willing to be part of a better future. Resolve, because for some it will not be easy to achieve and they will need to work at it.

This is just one of the things happening at Aquinas College to create a regular dialogue about things that matter. We are all striving to create a culture of regular, open and honest discourse about the attitudes and actions between people – especially between young men and young women. In this instance, we are speaking directly to the young men because it is young men that have the capacity to make the changes we are seeking – for the benefit of all.

Read More
Senior School Friday, 13 Aug 2021

Quiz for Good

Our Year 12 boys are living up to the Aquinas tradition of giving back to the community. As part of their fundraising efforts for the Class of 2021 Peer Scholarship Gift, the Year 12 Leadership Team jointly hosted a trivia night ‘social’ in June with the girls from Perth College for the benefit of our Year 10 boys, raising $1500 for their leaving gift to the College, while providing their younger peers with a positive social experience.

Read More
Senior School Wednesday, 04 Aug 2021

Indigenous Jumpers Revealed

My name is Jesse Motlop, and I’m a proud Larrakia man from the Darwin region in the Northern Territory.

Joining me is fellow Year 12 Student and 1st XVIII Footballer, Xavier Bradshaw-Pini.

Over the past 18 months, we have been sketching out a number of ideas. We have drafted many different jumper designs, using different colours, symbols, and styles. It wasn’t until late last term that we settled on a design that we were happy with, and we’re excited to present it.

On the front of the jumper, we see four white shields, these same shields can be seen as you enter the college at the roundabout. They each have a touchstone to represent the Edmund Rice Education Australia symbols but have been converted into Indigenous designs. The touchstones stand for:

  • Liberating Education
  • Gospel Spirituality
  • Inclusive Community
  • Justice and Solidarity

Across the front of the jumper and wrapped around the sides we see the Waugal, otherwise known as the snake. It was the Waugal that made the Noongar people custodians of the land so as a way to pay respect to the Wadjuk Noongar tribe, we have used the Waugal as a way to represent the group on this jumper, as this is their country that we play our sport on.

Some of you may have heard of a man by the name of Yagan, he was a Noongar leader and resistance fighter in the early 1800s and was feared by Europeans as a patriot fighting for his land. It is said that Yagan used to protect the point of Aquinas way before the College’s time, so to represent him we have included the four Red-Tailed Black-Cockatoo feathers on the jumper, the feathers of which Yagan use to wear on the top of his bandanna.

On the back of the jumper, you will see a river, this represents the Djarlgarra, also known as the Canning River. In the middle you will see a symbol to represent a meeting place, that is Aquinas College.

Designing the jumper has been an exciting project. Xav and I have put a lot of effort and time into this, and to be able to see the end product turn out this good is very rewarding.

Lastly, thank you to Aquinas for allowing Xav and I to embrace Aboriginal culture and history into the College’s 1st XVIII Footy jumpers. It's an awesome idea and a great way to celebrate NAICOC week.

The jumpers will be made available to purchase in the uniform shop in the upcoming weeks.

Read More
Senior School Friday, 30 Jul 2021

Why a school for boys?

While young men and boys can and do excel in many types of educational institutions, schools for boys focus with intention on learning that addresses not only how to excel in academics but also how to grow into a young man of integrity and empathy.

In engaging and supportive single-sex environments, students explore their values and establish a foundation for making responsible decisions; they explore their own definitions of self, who they are and who they want to become; they learn to forge healthy relationships; they step out of their comfort zone to explore their full potential.

They are preparing for their roles in a globally connected world.

Here’s how that happens.

Read More