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Nau mai, haere mai, talofa lava, malo e lelei, bula vinaka, kia orana, warm greetings

It is hard to believe we have already come to the end of week three! We have had a very full three weeks, it is now very pleasing to see our young men settled and working hard in their classes. Several times this week I have walked around our campus after school, I have been amazed at the amount of extra-curricular activity on offer. I estimated over half of our students were here at school participating in a variety of trainings and rehearsals. For these opportunities to take place we are so fortunate to have such hardworking staff who truly understand that it is during these moments outside of the classroom that relationships are formed and connections are made. It is our experience that demonstrates the more our students are involved in school life, the more they get out of it.

This week I received an email that I would like to share that encompasses what we are trying to achieve in our community:

This morning as I dropped my son off, just before the roundabout on Middlepark Rd, a senior boy happened to be walking past dressed up for the swimming sports. As I drove off the boy was crossing the road, he then turned to talk to my son, so I assumed, or to wait for someone. I messaged my son once I got to work to see what the boy wanted and if he knew him. My son’s reply was “no mum, I didn’t know him he just wanted to wait to walk with me to school and yarn to him to see how he was getting on as a year 7”. I just wanted to let you know that both my son’s father and I are so happy that a senior student took the time to talk and walk with him and that we chose St Thomas of Canterbury as a school for my son, if the young men that are being produced there are as caring as this young man was.

It is important to celebrate the importance of compassion, kindness and relationship as these are central to our faith formation and the strength of our faith based community. It is also important to understand it is a journey for our students to understand these important traits and, unfortunately, there isn’t a magic wand that builds these values into our young men immediately. Often the true understanding of these important values occur throughout a restorative process after a wrong has been done, and one of our students has to work hard through a process of restoration, forgiveness and restitution. Often our students learn the importance of these values by observing them in other students here at school and observing them in their own homes. Often and, most importantly, these values can be gained through prayer and belonging to a parish where our young men are able to come together on Sunday at Mass.

I would like to thank the sport department for their fine organisation yesterday at swimming sports. We were blessed with great weather and saw our boys participating with plenty of energy and vigour. Please take the time to have a look at the photos and results from the day.