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From the Head of Senior School

The strong service culture that is central to the Concordia community has already been reflected in the start to 2019. In the Senior School, we have seen this through the many ways our students have chosen to show the caring and respectful way in which they view each other and the world around them. You will see more about some of these things in other articles, but I would like to take this opportunity to highlight a few of them.

A group of five Year 10 boys recently took part in the World’s Greatest Shave. The highlight for many might be the contrasting before and after photos, but for me it was seeing their commitment to this cause through the planning meetings I had with them. What we don’t all see is the time and commitment they made to raising much needed funds.

Mikaela 12CFIN was recognised at a recent Assembly for her ongoing commitment to serving the Concordia community, particularly in the area of mental health. I have seen her passion for caring for younger students and their wellbeing over a number of years, and she is a deserving recipient of the award sponsored by the Lutheran Women’s Association of SA & NT.

Many students have played a part in welcoming those new to Concordia this year, and a number of them have gone well out of their way to assist those students with what can be a challenging adjustment. I have also been proud to watch our students work together to resolve any problems that arise. With the assistance of a very supportive team of staff members, they continue to work through any challenges they might encounter.

Our House Captains will be volunteering their time at the St John’s Campus Sports Day tomorrow and the Student Leaders will be volunteering at the Magdalene Drop-in Centre on Saturday night. Congratulations and thank you to the parents, staff and students who have served our community already this year. I look forward to celebrating this with you at the Twilight Tea next week.

Fiona McAuliffe
Head of Senior School

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Twilight Tea Reminders

With Twilight Tea is just around the corner and we are looking forward to a fantastic night of food, music and entertainment on Friday, 15 March. Please join us in the Quad from 4.30pm to 8pm.

For more information about what's on offer on the night, click here. Please also feel free to share the following link containing information about Twilight Tea with friends and family:

Bottle Stall Donations

It has been great to see a number of items coming in for the ever-popular Bottle Stall recently. A reminder that each Concordia Campus student is encouraged to bring a bottle or jar filled with something that would appeal to any age group e.g. factory-wrapped lollies, condiments, hair accessories, small gifts etc to the value of $5. 

When preparing your bottle / jar, please note the following as items not meeting the below criteria unfortunately cannot be used:

  • Bottles/jars should be free of chips/cracks;
  • Jars, including lids, must be washed in a dishwasher before use;
  • Please no nuts or nut products;
  • Food items (e.g. lollies) should be factory-wrapped. Unwrapped items cannot be used;  
  • Please include a simple label on the outside describing contents if the item is inedible e.g. 'For the Garden';
  • Please no alcohol or alcohol-containing products.

Students can bring their bottle / jar to the Concordia Campus Student Services Office (SSO) up until Wednesday, 13 March.

The class with the best / most imaginative bottles will receive a prize!

Non-Uniform Day

Friday, 15 March is also a uniform-free day for Concordia Campus students (Years 7 to 12). Students are asked to make a $2 donation towards Twilight Tea and Home Class teachers will collect donations on the day.

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Are IB Diploma ATARs really 'gaming the system'?

You may have read an article in the Weekend Australian recently (“Schools ‘gaming uni entry system’ through the International Baccalaureate”, Saturday 23 February) about the apparent unfairness of the IB Diploma over state-based Certificates of Education (e.g. SACE). The article takes the amazing achievement of nine students from Trinity Grammar in Sydney achieving the ‘perfect’ score of 45 from the November 2018 exam session to fuel a private vs public school war, and to assert that somehow Trinity Grammar has ‘gamed’ the system. To me, it sounds like Trinity had a bright cohort who pushed each other to extraordinary heights. In learning, as in sport, “Together Everyone Achieves More”!

The article goes on to attempt to portray IB Diploma students as receiving preferential treatment in ATAR calculations. Despite this being apparently a boon for DP marketing (‘come and game the system with the Diploma, high ATARs for everyone…!’), many of us involved with the IB Diploma Programme were disappointed with the critical and unfounded position that was being taken regarding the Diploma.

IB Schools Australasia have published a public response to the article (see link below). Briefly, they argue that:

  • Despite the Australian experience of the IB Diploma mostly offered in private schools, the worldwide norm is that it is studied in non-selective government schools – and is often the only course offered.
  • Independent studies have found that Australian universities perceive the International Baccalaureate Diploma as better preparation for tertiary study than non-IB curricula.
  • Other studies found the IB Diploma provides greater depth of knowledge than state-developed curricula. (Sources given in the article).

In terms of the claims regarding ATARs, IB Diploma candidates are given an ‘ATAR-equivalent’ – they are not part of the ATAR calculations, which are percentiles of the state curriculum. This ATAR-equivalent is calculated from the average of four different states’ different ways of calculating an equivalence. South Australia (SATAC) looks at the performance of IB Diploma alumni at university to find the average ATAR their SACE counterparts achieved (see link below). What this comparison finds is that the IB Diploma prepares students of varying abilities with the skills, resilience and breadth of knowledge to maintain a balanced life necessary to succeed at university. It is this broad education, and history of success at university, that sees apparently favourable ATAR-equivalents being given to IB Diploma students.

Or, as one of the comments underneath the article posed, ‘Let’s not forget that the purpose of education is education itself, not an ATAR score.’

If you would like to know more about the IB Diploma as an option for your son or daughter, I will be very pleased to meet with you. I will also be running an Introduction to the IB Diploma at the Parent Engagement Evening on Wednesday, 27 March.

Brendan Toohey
IB Diploma Coordinator

Related Links
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Lutheran Women of SA Award

At last Friday's Assembly, Year 12 student Mikaela 12CFIN received a Lutheran Women of SA Encouragement Award. The award was given in recognition of Mikaela's positive attitude to her studies, her service to the community and her being a wonderful ambassador for the school and a role model to other students.

Mikaela had this to say after receiving the award:
"I was very honoured to receive the Lutheran Women of SA Encouragement Award and I hope to continue to contribute to the Concordia College community."
Well done, Mikaela!
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Sports Day Bus Information

The annual Concordia Campus Sports Day will be held at SA Athletics Stadium (formerly Santos Stadium) on Thursday, 14 March and parents are warmly invited to attend to support their children on the day. Information about the day has been distributed to parents via email.

In particular, please note the following important reminders regarding bus routes and transport arrangements on Sports Day.

  • In the morning:
    • Hired buses will leave from Concordia at 8am to take students to SA Athletics Stadium, Mile End. Please ensure students arrive before 8am as no buses will leave Concordia after this time.
    • The Adelaide Metro 888 SE Freeway bus will travel directly to SA Athletics Stadium, Mile End and not via Concordia College.
    • Please note: the Adelaide Metro 882 SE Freeway bus will not run on Thursday, 14 March. Students who normally catch the Adelaide Metro 882 SE Freeway bus will need to make arrangements to connect with the Adelaide Metro 888 bus. See the Adelaide Metro website for details.
    • School bus runs will operate as per the morning timetable but rather than arriving at Concordia College the buses will travel directly to SA Athletics Stadium, Mile End.
  • In the afternoon:
    • All buses are scheduled to depart SA Athletics Stadium at 2.55pm.
    • Hired buses will be available to bring students back to Concordia, arriving at approximately 3.30pm.
    • School bus runs including the Adelaide Metro 888 will commence from SA Athletics Stadium. The 888 bus will not come via Concordia.
    • Please note: Students who normally catch the Adelaide Metro 882 SE Freeway bus will need to make other arrangements to get home as this service is not available on Thursday, 14 March.
  • Students may find their own way to and from the stadium, provided they arrive and sign in with their House at 8.30am and notify the teacher taking the roll of their departure arrangements.
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Geography Students on the Move

Term 1 is a busy time for Geography students who have a variety of opportunities to attend field trips and excursions. 

In Week 4, Year 9 Geography/Science students headed up to Warrawong Wildlife Sanctuary to investigate the different ecosystems and habitats in this environment. Under new management, Warrawong proved to be an excellent location for the students to undertake their interdisciplinary (Science and Geography) studies into the importance of maintaining natural ecosystems for the preservation of biodiversity. While at the sanctuary students conducted a number of investigations to understand the diversity of flora and fauna in the area. Additionally, they met some interesting characters at the wildlife show. While Jon Snow the carpet python may have appeared menacing, he proved to be as gentle as the joey bettong. Meanwhile, Penny the Barn Owl entertained us with her stealth flying skills.

This week (Week 6), Year 12 Geography students visited the Migration Museum in Kintore Avenue to delve into the current patterns of human migration to Australia. They were interested in finding out how patterns of migration to Australia have changed over the years, and what future migration patterns to Australia might look like.

In coming weeks Year 10 & 11 Geography students will also be heading out on field trips. Parents should have received notifications of these forthcoming trips. 

Joanne Wegener
Geography Teacher

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IB Diploma Students Awarded Physics Prizes

Congratulations to Ben Cook and Tash Moy, two members of our 2018 IB Diploma cohort, who were awarded certificates at the Australian Institute of Physics (SA) Bronze Bragg Medal Presentation and Lecture at Adelaide University on Thursday, 28 February. The Bronze Bragg IB Certificates are awarded to IB Diploma candidates who earned a 7 (the top score possible for an IB subject) for Higher Level Physics. The award is named after William Henry Bragg and William Lawrence Bragg who shared the 1915 Nobel Prize in Physics and who have a close connection to South Australia.

Brendan Toohey
IBDP Coordinator

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German Exchange Excursions

Braving the peak of summer’s last heat wave, the German Exchange students had an opportunity for a guided tour of Parliament House and the Town Hall, where they learned about the German connection with the history of Adelaide and the Westminster System.

Kim Bennett
Head of Languages

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Information from the Australian Government about Cyber Safety and Wellbeing

Please click to download a letter from the Prime Minister outlining some Government resources to empower parents, and schools, to protect children and prepare them to be resilient, responsible and respectful adults.

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2019 School Immunisation Program

1st Visit Reminder For Parents of Year 8 Students

Year 8 - 1st Visit for Human Papillomavirus Vaccine
Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis

Eastern Health Authority (EHA -, will be attending Concordia on Friday, 22 March to commence the above vaccinations (Dose 1) for those students with parent/guardian consent.

If you did not receive an immunisation consent form from your child, please ask at SSO for one. If unavailable contact EHA on 8132 3600. 

If any information you gave on the original consent form has changed, please inform EHA immunisation staff before the date of vaccination on 8132 3600.

Please notify us if:

  • Your child has already started the above program with another provider.
  • You wish to withdraw your consent.
  • Your child’s medical condition has changed.

Remember: It is your responsibility to advise EHA on the day of immunisation of any change in the information on the consent form, in particular, your child’s medical condition.  A signed and dated note presented on the day of immunisation from a parent or guardian in your child’s diary is acceptable.

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Digital Matters – Family access to Microsoft O365

Concordia College Middle and Senior School students use Microsoft O365 accounts as part of their learning experience. The College’s education agreement with Microsoft allows every student to install the Microsoft suite of apps – eg Word, PowerPoint – on up to 5 devices, including their College-owned device. 

To download additional licences at home, your child simply has to:

  • Open a browser on the target family machine
  • Search for O365 login and log onto Microsoft O365 using school credentials
  • click on the profile picture/icon in the top right corner
  • select view account
  • click on manage installs on the install status tab
  • click on the install desktop applications and follow the prompts

Obviously, the installs are attached to the child’s account so they will be active so long as your child is enrolled at Concordia.

Tony Shillitoe
Director of Digital Resources ELC to Year 12

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World's Greatest Shave

A group of students were given permission from the school to participate in the World's Greatest Shave this year, and the funds raised will be going to the Leukaemia Foundation. Since starting in 1998, the Leukaemia Foundation has raised over $200 million to help beat blood cancer. The Leukaemia Foundation helps give families facing blood cancer the emotional and practical support they need, and funds vital research to help more people survive blood cancer.

Blood cancer claims more lives than breast cancer or melanoma, and today another 35 people will be given the devastating news that they have leukaemia, lymphoma, myeloma or another blood disorder. We're currently just over $2,300 as a group, which is enough to aid future breakthroughs by funding a major blood cancer project for a week.

Although we have already shaved, donations will still be open until 30 June.

Students should have received an email which can be used to make a donation if you choose to do so. There is also a box in SSO that you can put money in. Thanks everyone!

Ash, Lachlan, Sam, Jesse and Tom

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Thank You

Thank you to all those people who have made food and donated items for the Magdalene Drop-in Centre service activity on Saturday night. We are very appreciative of your efforts and know that the donations will be a blessing to the Centre's patrons.

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Business Networking Breakfast

Concordia presents two Business Breakfasts each year and at our ninth breakfast on Thursday, 7 March, 60 guests heard from guest speaker, Dr Roger Thomas - Commissioner for Aboriginal Engagement, Old Concordian from the Class of 1967, past Concordia parent and current grandparent.

Dr Thomas is passionate about promoting Aboriginal inclusion and spoke of his journey as an Aboriginal man, growing up in an Aboriginal community outside of Port Augusta, as well as his school days at both Port Augusta and Concordia. Dr Thomas shared insights into his more recent roles as Professor of Indigenous Engagement and Adjunct Professor of Education at the University of Adelaide, Dean of the Centre for Australian Indigenous Research and Studies, and South Australian Treaty Commissioner, as well as his current role as South Australia's Commissioner for Aboriginal Engagement. We thank Dr Thomas for being our guest speaker this morning and thank all who attended for making it a wonderful morning.

Stay tuned for details of our next Business Breakfast on Tuesday, 15 October.

Sue Spry
Donor Relations and Alumni Manager

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Class of 2018 Reunion

On Thursday, 21 February we welcomed over 90 students who graduated from Concordia last year back to the College for their first reunion as Old Concordians. The event was a great success with a lot of students reflecting really positively on their time at Concordia, and looking forward to keeping up connections with each other and the school through the Old Concordians network.

Sue Spry
Donor Relations and Alumni Manager

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From the Archives: Mighty Mettwurst Marathon

This week, as we prepared for Sports Day events at both campuses and the annual Twilight Tea, we look back on a most unusual running event involving a large mettwurst made specially for the Concordia Carnival in 1974.


  • 1974 Mettwurst race linocut
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Student Achievements

Congratulations to the Isobel 7KWAN and Eliza 7LTHO on being selected in the 2019 Adelaide South East SAPSASA Softball Team. The carnival will be held in Week 11 of Term 1 from Monday 8 to Thursday 11 April 2019 at Barratt’s Reserve, West Beach, and we wish them all the best.

Jessie 0076A big congratulations also to Jessie 11MHAR who was recently selected in the U17 Australian Girls Squad to attend the Softball Australia Aussie Diamonds USA Tour in Minnesota later this year. An amazing achievement!




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