Term 1 Week 4 - 19th February 2021

Season of Lent


As a College community, we celebrated Ash Wednesday, which marks the beginning of the Lenten season. This year, in place of ashes, students received a purple ribbon at the liturgy, which they pinned onto their uniform. The purple in the ribbon symbolizing a period of waiting and expectation. 

Thank you to our Leader of Evangelisation, Mr Timo Gobius, for coordinating the Ash Wednesday liturgy, and I congratulate Youth Ministry Officers, Matthew Strumolo and Emily Burg for running the liturgy.

I refer you to Mr Gobius' full report in the following newsletter article.

Swimming Carnival

On Tuesday, the College community gathered for its annual swimming carnival. A wonderful day was had by all. What was particularly evident this year was the outstanding attendance, participation and leadership of our senior students.

I would like to particularly congratulate our House Captains for their leadership, enthusiasm and commitment to making this a most memorable carnival.

Flinders Gianluca Polacci Byrnes and Phoebe Bentley
Hastings Matthew Gleeson and Bianca Green
Innes Timothy Kobelke and Piper Seale
Macquarie Matthew Walsh and Maddison Baxter
Oxley Connor Hallum and Chloe Cooper
Wilson Connor Warneken and Hannah Freeman

I sincerely thank Mr Michael Cannon for his exceptional organisation of the carnival. Thank you also to all staff who had jobs throughout the day to ensure the smooth running of the carnival.

To Mrs Diana Walsh and Mr David Constantine along with our Year 12 Hospitality students, thank you, for preparing a delicious morning tea and lunch for the staff.

Congratulations to our 2021 House winner, for the second consecutive year,
Macquarie House.

"Being a winning House is not about winning every race, it's about participation"



Congratulations to the following students who were crowned Age Champions


I encourage you to view the Swimming Carnival report in full at the following link. 

Congratulations to those students who have been selected to represent SJRC at the Diocesan carnival.


Pupil Free Day 

Staff Professional Development Day - 
Monday, 22nd February 2021 

Our first Staff Professional Development Day is fast approaching. The main focus of the day is to allow staff to continue with the School Improvement Process. As you may recall from last year, the College was due to undergo the process. However, COVID-19 greatly impacted this, and we find ourselves in a position where we need to continue and complete the process early this year.

Staff will also undergo annual Mandatory Child Protection training on the day.

This is a pupil free day. 

God Bless

Mr Jim Dempsey

Web Article Sport Swimming Principal's Message Staff Development Day

Ash Wednesday Liturgy Celebrated in our College Hall


The new Youth Ministry Officers (YMOs) Matthew Strumolo and Emily Burg along with Ms Gill’s Year 10 RE classes worked together to develop and run a beautiful liturgy to celebrate Ash Wednesday in our College Hall on Wednesday. They produced a Script, Powerpoint presentation, music and prayer focus with many artefacts representing Caritas Projects. Year 10 students then lead the College celebration, showing remarkable courage for Year 10 students. 

The liturgy focused on the three themes of Ash Wednesday, where we share the focus on Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving.

  • Students were challenged to pray for those who are less fortunate than ourselves, (Prayer).
  • Students were also encouraged to go without buying a recess snack each week during Lent. (Fasting)
  • Dropping their spare change into the Project Compassion box, that is located in their PC room (Almsgiving). All funds go towards Caritas' effort to support their programs around the world.

Students showcased many artefacts in the prayer focus, such as:

  • Ash_Wednesday_Liturgy_170221_39_.JPG
    Ball of Wool -  representing the basic sewing skills taught to Jamila from Bangladesh to give her a source of income. (Bangladesh - Week 1)
  • Water Vase - Margaret’s school was destroyed by a hurricane and Caritas bought them eight water tanks to harvest clean water for a healthier community. (Solomon Islands - Week 2)
  • Book - Oliva from Tanzania was taught basic reading and writing skills to aid her to set up a classroom to teach kids in her village.  (Tanzania - Week 3)
  • Calculator - to represent the financial planning skills that Arsad was taught by Caritas partners. This enabled him and the village to purchase sanitation equipment to improve village health and hygiene. (Indonesia - Week 4)
  • Cooking Pan - represented the cooking skills Halima was taught by Caritas partners so that she could feed her family and sell her food for an income. (Bangladesh - Week 5)
  • Project Compassion Collection box which represents a way that Australians have donated to Caritas over many years since Caritas beginnings in 1965. Since then, Caritas has raised over $500m for aid support for communities in need in Australia and overseas.

Over the next six weeks of Lent during Pastoral Care time, students will learn more about these people and their struggles to have their basic needs met. Funds raised for Caritas go towards these projects and many others.

Thank you to our Year 10 students and staff and our seniors Gianluca Polacci-Byrnes, Sarah Jennings, Mark Ainsworth, Chloe Howarth, Jasmine Howarth, and Ella Smith for assisting with the Distribution of Ribbons. Special thanks also to our YMOs Emily Burg and Matt Strumolo who helped to make it all possible.


Mr Timo Gobius
Leader of Evangelisation

Web Article Mass and Liturgies

Caritas Australia is Hope in Action

The season of Lent begins with Ash Wednesday, which also marks the beginning of the annual Caritas Australia Project Compassion Appeal. Donations to Project Compassion allows Caritas Australia, the Catholic Agency for International Aid and Development, to work with local communities around the world to alleviate poverty, hunger, oppression and injustice. With hope, support and compassion at the core of what Carias does, they work towards a world where all people may thrive.

We encourage you to put your compassion into action this Lent through your prayer, fasting and almsgiving by supporting Project Compassion. Families wishing to donate can do so online via the Caritas Australia website lent.caritas.org.au

Saint Oscar Romero is our inspiration for Project Compassion 2021, so in his words let’s “Aspire not to have more, but to be more.”

First Week of Lent - Jamila, Bangladesh.


We begin our annual Lenten Project Compassion journey by learning about the story of Jamila and her family. Jamila, 22, is a Rohingya woman, living in the world’s largest refugee camp in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. A single mother, she fled armed conflict in Myanmar to save herself, her elderly mother and an eight-month-old baby.

With the support of Caritas Australia, through Caritas Bangladesh, Jamila was able to access emergency food and shelter. She also received counselling, emotional support and learnt sewing skills, to help her earn an income. Jamila now feels less alone, with a sense of community around her. She is able to 'Be More’ to her little family.

• 860,494 people remain in the densely populated camps, in desperate need of humanitarian assistance, especially due to COVID-19. (UNHCR)
Watch a short film about Jamila’s story here.

“Aspire not to have more, but to be more.”

Please support Project Compassion: lent.caritas.org.au

Working together for justice and dignity. Walking together in hope. Building together a thriving future for all.

Walk with us towards a world of hope.


Timo Gobius
Leader of Evangelisation

Web Article Charity

Bus Safety Week is 22nd -28th February

Each year, Bus Safety Week raises awareness for all road users on how to stay safe on and around buses.

There is a 40km/h speed limit for traffic passing a school bus that is picking up or setting down school children. The speed limit is for all traffic travelling in the same direction as the bus, whether the bus is stationary or moving. The 40km/h speed limit must be observed when the rear ‘wig-wag’ lights on the bus are flashing. Flashing headlights on these buses also alert oncoming motorists that children are close.

We ask families to talk with their child about:

  • Waiting until the bus has gone to cross the road safely.
  • Not getting distracted by a mobile device.
  • What to do if they get on the wrong bus or off at the wrong bus stop.

More Road Safety tips can be found at https://roadsafety.transport.nsw.gov.au/downloads/keeping-our-kids-safe-around-schools.pdf


Web Article Student Welfare Traffic Management

Year 12 English Study Seminars


Many learners gathered in F5 on Tuesday morning before the swimming carnival to be treated to a free workshop on "Inferential Reading" by Clare Hayes, Leader of English at MacKillop College. The seminar was most insightful and valuable.

Students are warmly invited to the third seminar in this series, to be run on Tuesday morning at 8.00am in F5. This is the third of the four presentations. See you there! 

Details of remaining seminars being held are below.

Please contact Ms Marchment for any further information.


Year 12 – you are being offered a chance to receive FREE assistance to prepare for your HSC English Trial and HSC examinations. Clare Hayes, Leader of English at MacKillop College, is offering her extensive teaching and HSC marking experience to you, free of charge, in order to hone your skills in reading and comprehension, concentrating on Section 1 of Paper One (Texts and Human Experiences).

The seminars are to be held from 8.00am SHARP until 8.40am, in F5:

  • Tuesday, 23rd February - Week 5, and
  • Tuesday, 2nd March - Week 6 

Other SJRC workshops will follow Ms Hayes’ presentations in the weeks after – so stay tuned for more opportunities to maximise your results in HSC English.

You would be crazy to miss out on these opportunities to strive for excellence!

Anne Marchment
Leader of English

Web Article Curriculum Year 12

The College Library provides an engaging environment that supports teaching and learning within the school and encourages an interest in quality research, and aims to develop effective and independent learners.

The Library is open from Monday to Friday from 7.30 am, through student lunchtimes and until late in the afternoon. This allows students to prepare for the day, catch up on reading or study and use facilities such as printers and computers.

There are many displays and activities throughout the year designed to support our local community of readers, learners, and makers.

We currently have a learning space offering nine computers that are utilised to support classroom learning. We have developed a learning environment designed to support recreational and collaborative work. We provide support and work together with teaching staff to develop information literacy and ICT learning strategies that are incorporated into teaching and learning. We are focused on providing 24/7 access to quality online information available through our portal.

We subscribe to many digital resources including World Book Online, EBSCO, and others. Our print collection is complemented by our SORA eBook library, RB Digital magazines, ClickView, along with access to the Sydney Morning Herald and the Port News.

Homework Hub is also available in the Library offering an opportunity for students to complete homework and assessments.

Homework Hub hours are as follows: Monday to Thursday from 3.15 pm - 4.30 pm

Food for Thought is an initiative designed for senior students. It operates in the Library from 3.15pm - 4.30pm on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Usually, there are staff from the Curriculum team in attendance to provide support and mentoring. And there’s food! We look forward to welcoming our Stage 6 students to Food for Thought on these days.

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Karen Bale (Monday-Thursday)
Michelle Lawler (Friday)
Teacher Librarian

Web Article Library

What is ‘Literacy Enrichment’ at SJRC?

It’s opportunities in and out of SJRC that enrich students’ understanding of and experience with media, film, reading, writing, and language in general. It’s excursions, festivals, writing, debating and public speaking competitions and live performance.

Check us out at - SJRC Literacy Enrichment

2021 Literacy Enrichment opportunities look like:

  • SJRC Page Turners Book Club
  • What Matters? Writing Competition
  • Debating and Public Speaking Competition
  • Incursions for most junior cohorts
  • Year 8 and Year 10 Writing Enrichment Days
  • Literacy Links Excursion to Sydney 3-4 May (Years 10/11)

Welcome to Your 2021 school year at St Joseph’s Regional College!

Welcome to Your 2021 school year at St Joseph’s Regional College!
We send out an extra special welcome to our new students. We know you will feel welcome and become a part of our SJRC community in no time.

On the Literacy Enrichment radar this week are two huge opportunities for all of our readers and writers:

Kids Lit Quiz (KLQ)

This was conducted for the first time last year with great success, and we’re thrilled to be organising teams to participate in it again this year.

KLQ at a glance
The Kids' Lit Quiz is an annual literature quiz for students aged 10 - 13 years.
Quizzes are held in Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Indonesia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand and the USA.

Format of the quiz 

Heats - Teams of four students are asked to answer 100 questions on children’s literature divided into ten categories, which vary each year.

The winning team from each heat competes in a National Final. National champions compete in the World Final.

There are 10 forthcoming Australia heat(s)/final(s).

Coming up next: NSW Heat 1 - Taree, Monday 22nd March 2021.

Get your reading on and see Mrs Bale in the library to register your interest.

What Matters? Writing Competition (Closes May 14)

WHAT MATTERS? is an online writing competition open to students in years 5-12. What Matters? is a 'catalyst for young thinkers and young writers to develop a perspective, a point of view, on where we're heading as a society'.

What Matters? is an exciting way for our students to have a say, challenge themselves and develop their writing skills.


Coming Up:

  1. Week 9 - Thursday, 25th March 9.00am
  2. Year 10 English Incursion: Bell Shakespeare presents ‘Macbeth in Rehearsal’
  3. What Matters? Writing competition open
  4. Kids Lit

How You Can Participate in Literacy Enrichment: It’s easy!

  1. Visit the SJRC Literacy Enrichment website
  2. Check daily notices on Schoolworx
  3. Read the SJRC Newsletter.

See you next week!


The SJRC Literacy Enrichment Team

Literacy Enrichment

Word of the week is:


Meaning: Sweet or Musical. Pleasant to hear.

The Blokes Choir have mellifluous voices.


We have sourced some titles in our Library which reflect this theme.

These include the following:

St Joseph's Regional College Library
Literacy Enrichment
  featured image

20th January 2021

The Diocesan Winter Sport Trials are being held at St. John’s College Woodlawn and Southern Cross University Lismore on Tuesday the 9th of March 2020.  These trials are for students who wish to trial for Diocesan teams in the following sports:

  • 15 Boys Rugby League
  • Open Boys Rugby League
  • Open Girls Soccer
  • Open Boys Soccer

If you have played at a representative level in either sport and would like to be considered, please use the information below to submit your application.  The deadline for applications is Tuesday 23rd February 2021.

SJRC, MacKillop and Newman are traveling by bus to and from the trials.  We depart on Monday the 8th of March and return the evening of the 9th March after the trials.  More details will be emailed to successful applicants after the deadline for nominations has passed.

Open Boys & Girls Football Nomination Form

15s & Open Rugby League Nomination Form

Michael Cannon
SJRC Leader of Sport

20th January 2021

Web Article Winter Sport Trials Sport sports_article

Weekly Lunch Specials

Term 1 Week 5 Lunch Specials 
Monday Pupil Free Day
Tuesday Beef Nachos
Wednesday Mexican Chicken Quesadillas
Thursday Chicken Parmi Burgers
Friday Butter Chicken and Rice

The Canteen opens at 8.00am every school day.

The Canteen's everyday menu can be found on our College website at the following link.  http://www.pmreglism.catholic.edu.au/community/parent-information/

Ms Donna Hamlin
Food Services Manager



The Port Macquarie-Hastings Council has launched a new initiative called 'Big Battery Blitz' in which our College is participating in. Families and staff are encouraged to bring in their spent batteries, drop them into the tube provided in the College Office where they will be collected by a council representative.

Web Article Community News