It is with mixed emotions that I announce that Dr Mathew White has been appointed as an Associate Professor with the University of Adelaide’s Graduate School of Education, a position that he will take up in January 2018. I say mixed, because while I am thrilled for Mathew, there are also tinges of regret that I did not have the opportunity to work with him longer at Saints. Mathew and I actually began our teaching careers together at Westminster School in Adelaide, and we also spent three years as colleagues at Geelong Grammar School. We spent a lot of time together during that period, so I personally feel a sense of loss at his leaving. His new role will involve a range of responsibilities, including teaching undergraduates, supervising PhD students, undertaking research projects and collaborating with other G08 universities. The University has a goal to ensure that all graduating students are well practiced in Wellbeing and Positive Education, which bodes well for the future of our profession.
Even though there will be plenty of opportunity to farewell Mathew at the end of next term, I would like to acknowledge the enormous contribution he has made to Saints over the past 7 years in his capacity as Director of Wellbeing & Positive Education. In that time, Wellbeing and Positive Education has become a fundamental part of our pedagogy, affecting all aspects of life at Saints for our students and our staff. The positive feedback from students, the influence on parents’ enrolment decisions, and our outstanding international reputation in this field are all testament to his work.
Whilst we can be sure that Wellbeing and Positive Education are firmly embedded in a Saints’ education, our new Headmaster, Tim Browning, would naturally like the opportunity to reflect on our current model and to play a part in shaping our future direction in this important area. For those reasons, there are no immediate plans to advertise for Mathew’s successor.
I will keep you informed as the discussions about future arrangements develop, but in the meantime, Mathew’s role and our Wellbeing & Positive Education program continue as normal.
In my last newsletter I indicated that I’d be writing about the Saints’ and Walford combined orchestral concert held in Week 2. The theme was Music of the World, and although I knew that despite the cold August evening, I’d be warmed up by the end of the concert I wasn’t quite prepared for what eventuated. Listening to good music is transformative in that it can take you out of yourself, change the way you are feeling and make you contemplate some of the more important aspects of life. On that evening the audience were treated to a trip around the world as we moved from places such as The Wild West of America, to Korea, to Europe, to India and even to the Snowy Mountains of Australia. The quality of the music was simply stunning and the students from both schools are to be congratulated. This combined concert is a truly meaningful collaboration between our two schools which has lasted 22 years, and I’d like to thank Ms Rebecca Clarke, the Principal of Walford, for her ongoing support of these endeavours.
On Monday night of this week, the School Bands were on show at the Governor of Hindmarsh Hotel. Again, the audience were treated to an amazing standard of musicianship, and I congratulate Philip Walsh for realising his vision of collaborating with some high quality musicians from the tertiary and professional worlds. The boys were obviously thrilled, and you could see that they didn’t see themselves simply as music students but rather as musicians.
There is a palpable sense of excitement in the air this week as we approach our Winter Intercol Season. Despite myself, I find it hard not to be drawn up in the excitement and have been reflecting on how lucky we are to be a part of this amazing rivalry with Prince Alfred College that is rich in history and story. I wish all players, coaches, support staff, and parents all the best over the next couple of weeks. The message from the School has been very clear about maintaining our standards of behavior and conduct during this carnival. I know those standards will be upheld and simply reiterate that if we win, win with grace, and if we lose, lose with dignity. Pro Deo et Patria.