Newsletter (August 2011)
This is a ten week term and then, when the seniors return from the October holidays, they have only eight days of schooling in Term Four before going on study leave, so the message is: study – revise – study, as time is very short. I am sure that most parents are saying exactly the same things to their sons, but repetition is the mother of learning in this case. For the senior boys, anything less than two hours study a night and they are fooling themselves. They need a study plan, a space to work and a desire to achieve top marks. We all need to convey to our senior students how critical a big effort in Term Three is to their success, given they have virtually no Term Four to rely on.
Continuing along academic lines, I noted this comment in the July/August edition of the Metro magazine’s article on ‘Best Schools’ by their criteria –
“The quality of NCEA is always in dispute. It is true there are things wrong with it, but it is a robust system and has been widely acclaimed overseas. If you are worried about it, remember this: New Zealand ranks fourth in the world in the PISA assessments, which are generally acknowledged as the gold standard in measuring student achievement. We outrank Britain, Australia and America and because 90% of New Zealand schools use NCEA, the PISA ranking inherently reflects the quality of NCEA.”
An interesting admission!
An excellent article was printed in the Dominion titled “School sports teetering due to ageing coaches”.
The gist of the article cited ageing teachers, the increased workload caused by internal assessment, a lack of incentive to stay involved and a new generation of teachers unwilling to sacrifice their free, and often family time as threatening our sporting landscape. This move could also affect music, drama and cultural performances. The real concern for many principals is that we could end up like Britain where teachers refuse to coach or be involved in any extra curricular activities.
The above quote is very accurate, BUT I hasten to add that we are very fortunate at Rosmini with our teacher involvement and parent support. However, success brings new challenges; for example, last year we fielded 4 soccer teams, this year 11. Hockey and basketball have a similar growth rate. Rugby is more static, although we still we field 11 rugby teams. Compare the number of teams we field with other schools with vastly bigger rolls and you will see that Rosmini does very well. I am not for one moment suggesting that these schools should field more teams, but I am emphasizing that the demands on coaches and managers, either from staff or parents, is onerous. Allied to this is the tremendous cost of bringing our fields up to an acceptable standard.
READJUSTMENT OF CLASSES IN YEARS 8, 9 AND 10
Rosmini College has a policy of reassessing students in the top classes at Years 8, 9 and 10 after the exam rounds (mid and end of year). This is to take into account the achievement of boys in the streamed class and those in the general classes. The criteria for assessing whether any changes will be made will be the boys’ report scores taken across all graded compulsory subjects.
The Rosmini senior basketball team are the Auckland champions, having defeated Auckland Grammar and Westlake Boys to get there. This is a magnificent result and from here the team goes to the Nationals. Again, success is sweet, but a trip to the Nationals is expensive. Hence Mr Samuels would be grateful for any sponsorship he can get. This is one of the top ten sporting achievements in the history of Rosmini.
Continuing on the sporting theme, Rosmini will play Massey on Saturday at Rosmini to decide who is No. 1 in North Harbour. Next Tuesday they take on Kelston at Kelston to determine the Region’s champion. This game will be televised and, whatever the result, this is a great achievement for a college the size of Rosmini.
Hockey and Soccer
Hockey and soccer continue to flourish and have some big games ahead. Perhaps before this epistle is published some of these fixtures will have been decided. Again, the results are on line, but my point is, regardless of the results, the boys and coaches have done a remarkable job to have come this far.
Oliver Tyack, Jacob Rennie and Miles Broderick won the Intermediate Boys’ Relay from a very strong field of competitors at Seacliff in Dunedin in the holidays. They, and Matthew Hopkinson, acquitted themselves well in very strong fields in the individual events, and also in the previous two days, with Jacob’s 4th placing in the Intermediate Boys the best result. This is the first time Rosmini has won a National title at orienteering - quite an achievement considering it is not the boys’ main sporting activity and they were competing against the country’s elite.
Our senior team has just completed a successful season by finishing second in the North Harbour Senior A Championships. The highlight of the season was beating the overall champions, Westlake Boys High, in the final game.
OTHER OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENTS
- Richard Rahardja has achieved magnificent results competing recently at the Central North Island Karate Championships, National Karate Championships, National Secondary Schools Karate Championships, Commonwealth Karate Championships and at the Sugihara Cup. He won gold and silver medals in all events in his disciplines of Kata and Kumite. An amazing achievement, Richard!
- Nick Southgate competed recently at the 2011 World Youth Championships (U18) in France where he jumped 4.80m in the final to place fourth equal. This is the best finish in a world event by any New Zealand pole vaulter.
- Jack Simpson of Year 11 finished 6th in the World Youth 29er skiff in Zadar, Croatia recently. Warm, clean water and a wide range of wind strengths made for really competitive sailing in a fleet of 23 boats. The sailing was very close, with only seconds separating the top 10 boats at mark roundings and finishes.
- Brandon Lilley won a silver medal at the New Zealand Secondary Schools Judo Championships held recently in Tauranga.
- Ben Wiki won silver medals at the Auckland Club Wrestling Championships and the North Island Club Wrestling Championships held in June. He’s now training for the National Club Championships which will be held at the end of August.
The Senior Open and Advanced Open 1 and 2 teams debated in the Octo-Final of their respective grades on 9 August at St Cuthbert’s. The Rosmini Senior Open team defeated Edgewater College on the moot that the benefits of Facebook outweigh the harms. Rosmini was negating. The Advanced Open 1 was defeated by Diocesan Girls and Advanced Open 2 won against AIC Senior College. Both Advanced Open teams argued that New Zealand Police should be armed. The two winning teams will go on to debate in the Quarter final on 13 August at Auckland Grammar School. Kevin Fernandes is on the top 10 speakers list for his grade.
We need to keep in mind that 2012 is our 50th Jubilee year and Kevin Barry is now taking registrations. You can register and pay online, or you can send a cheque or come into the school office to pay. We have erected signs around the Shore, at St Mary’s Northcote and Smales Farm who have both been very generous in allowing us to advertise on their properties, and for that we thank them. I am not sure that the actual programme is finalized yet, but when it is it will also be online and I will cover it in my newsletters and also in our Old Boys mail out. I do know that the Superior General of the Rosminian Order will be here and also the Provincial.
WORLD VISION 40 HOUR FAMINE
Congratulations and thank you to all those students who participated in World Vision’s ‘40 Hour Famine’. The school raised $7,500. A special mention to Jack Green of Year 9 who raised $1060, Ray Hu (Year 12) who raised $664 and Sam Curtis (Year 9) who raised $320. A superb individual effort, boys.
DE PAUL HOUSE
Once again Rosmini College is supporting De Paul House in obtaining various household items to assist those families in our community who are struggling. Should you have any items that could be used, please have your son bring the items to the Catcheside (ground floor of the Music Block) or R3 of the Foster Cooke building where it will be stored. The collection will run for four weeks from Monday 22 August – Friday 16 September. Such household items could include furniture, kitchenware, blankets, clothes, rugs, books etc
T J GERRARD