Dear St Michael’s College Community,
National Reconciliation Week
National Reconciliation Week (NRW) is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia. The dates for NRW remain the same each year; 27 May to 3 June. These dates commemorate two significant milestones in the reconciliation journey – the successful 1967 referendum, and the High Court Mabo decision respectively. Reconciliation must live in the hearts, minds and actions of all Australians as we move forward, creating a nation strengthened by respectful relationships between the wider Australian community, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Reconciliation Australia’s theme for 2021, More than a word. Reconciliation takes action, urges the reconciliation movement towards braver and more impactful action. Reconciliation is a journey for all Australians – as individuals, families, communities, organisations and importantly as a nation. At the heart of this journey are relationships between the broader Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
To our new supporters, please remember the importance of privileging and amplifying First Nations’ voices as you add your voice to calls for reconciliation and justice.
We all have a role to play when it comes to reconciliation, and in playing our part we collectively build relationships and communities that value Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, histories, cultures, and futures. 2021 marks twenty years of Reconciliation Australia and almost three decades of Australia’s formal reconciliation process”. (Reconciliation Australia)
Thank you to Andrew Spencer and Kate Tyrwhitt for leading the awareness and activities across both St Michael’s College campuses during the week, as well as Liesel Dunstan and her student team for preparing a wonderful range of indigenous themed foods for morning tea.
Tomorrow, our 1st XVIII Football team will participate in the Yunupingu Cup versus Pembroke at Kensington Oval. Kaurna elder, Uncle Mickey O’Brien, will perform a Welcome to Country Ceremony prior to the match and our boys will be wearing an Indigenous design guernsey. The guernsey has been proudly designed by Blake Rankine, Kai Rankine, Warren Rankine and Melissa Smith, a St Michael’s family. In describing the design, the family say “The Coorong has a special place in our hearts. We are Ngarrindjeri People. The Pelican (Goolay-Yali) Spiritual Significance can be seen everywhere through the Coorong and the Wattle flower is also commonly found (Acacia). The Coorong flows around the Guernsey and Feather symbolizes trust, honor, strength, freedom and birds (hence pelican). The Boomerang is an ongoing symbol of cultural endurance.” The College thanks the Rankine family and the boys are looking forward to proudly wearing their design.
Mary Poppins Jr.
What a wonderful experience it was to be part of the audience at Thursday’s opening night of the 2021 St Michael’s College musical, Mary Poppins Jr. I was once again in awe of the young people we get to work with each day and extremely proud of the way students and staff from both campuses worked together to create an outstanding, joyous experience for us all.
As I prefaced in the production booklet, the key themes of Mary Poppins Jr. include never underestimating the importance of imagination, play and fun in life, and always appreciating the value of family and taking time to connect with each other in a genuine way. For those experiencing it for the first time, I’m sure you will enjoy the fun and vibrant atmosphere of a stage performance, as our students bring this story to life through voice, music, dance and art. It is a true example of the famous Oscar Wilde quote that “The stage is not merely the meeting place of all the arts, but is also the return of art to life”.
Students at St Michael’s are encouraged to build strong relationships, value each individual, to explore their curiosities and to take on challenges to fully realise their potential. The Arts is a wonderful way to achieve this, as it brings community together, lifelong friendships are formed, and creative risks are taken to develop confidence, skills and abilities.
Thank you again to our students and wonderful staff, under the direction of Emily Burns, whose talent, commitment and personal qualities were essential to the success of this production. I know your work is greatly appreciated and valued by the students, but also by the staff, families and wider St Michael’s College community.
Last night’s performance met this in every way. Tickets are still available for Friday night and Saturday matinee performances, so if you need a smile and a lift, get along. Purchase your tickets here.