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From the Concordia Campus Principal

The concept of wellbeing and its close links with learning are not new. A wealth of evidence is available to inform educators of this important relationship in the work they do every day with students, from preschool students beginning their education journey, to senior students preparing for further education, employment and adult life. In recent years however, there have been changes to how children and young people learn and how teachers teach. The school environment, and the world in which our children and young people will grow and function, continue to change. We need to be responsive to numerous influences as we deliver education now and into the future. There is a heightened awareness of, and commitment to, personalised and differentiated learning and support for every student to succeed.

In this context, our understanding of wellbeing needs to be contemporary and forward-focussed. An individual’s wellbeing is constantly changing. How students feel about themselves and their own wellbeing changes over time, in different situations and circumstances, and in response to community and environmental factors. Wellbeing, or the lack of it, can affect a student’s engagement and success in learning. Educators need to understand the potential wellbeing has to bring about positive change, what is required to foster wellbeing, and how it can become a powerful force in students.

At Concordia, strengthening a culture of wellbeing across the College is something to which we are deeply committed. One of the ways we are beginning to explore and build on our commitment to wellbeing is through our Flinders University partnership. Our classrooms already do amazing work with much attention given to the social and emotional needs of young people. To further our work in this area, Concordia has committed to extending the work of our Wellbeing Researcher in Residence, Dr Catherine Johnson (Research Fellow, Psychology, Flinders University). Catherine will continue and expand her work at Concordia as she takes on the role of Wellbeing Advisor for two days each week, beginning next month. Informed by data and research, the Wellbeing Advisor will identify and contextualise a wellbeing model, make recommendations, and support the development and implementation of proactive programs to promote student and staff resilience and wellbeing.

The Wellbeing Advisor will provide a Wellbeing Reference Group with advice and guidance for the review and/or integration of the wellbeing components of the student pastoral programs, potential parent education programs, and approaches to supporting staff wellbeing. The Wellbeing Advisor will support and work collaboratively with the College Wellbeing Reference Group and Team.

In line with good research practice, within this role, the Wellbeing Advisor will disseminate findings to the community through publication in peer reviewed journals and conference presentations. This will allow principles developed during this project to be shared and tested in broader settings.

So what does all this mean? It means that as a school it is our privilege, and one of our most important jobs, to strengthen our students' wellbeing. They are the future generation, the more we can encourage their flourishing – as in, finding what their strengths are, helping develop their positive feelings and attitudes – the more we all benefit, hence we are expanding our focus and resourcing in wellbeing research and education for the benefit of each individual student.

Watch this space, as we develop a new and exciting wellbeing strategy for Concordia College!

Paul Weinert
Principal - Concordia Campus 

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Circus Workshops in Year 7 Drama

In Weeks 5 & 9 of Term 2 our Drama class did circus workshops with Scott from Circus Elements. It was really fun, and it was an awesome experience for all of us because we learnt new skills and tricks! These included juggling, ground and partner juggling, diabolo, spinning plates and devil sticks. All of these tricks were challenging and fun. We were really thrilled to have the chance to work with Scott and he made it super enjoyable for us!

Emily and Andrea 7LTHO

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VOCES8 Choir workshop at Immanuel College

Late last term, members of Concordia’s Concert Vocal had the privilege of attending a special choral workshop led by a member of the internationally recognised London-based vocal group, VOCES8. Hosted by Immanuel College, Concordia students were joined by choirs from St Mary’s and Immanuel Colleges, and the results were truly inspiring. Joyful music filled the Immanuel College Chapel, and it was an experience that will be long remembered by all involved.

Mat Noble
Director of Music

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Habitat for Humanity: Fiji Service Trip

In the July school holidays, six Concordia students joined 25 students from five South Australian Lutheran Schools and 12 leaders, embarking on the trip of a lifetime to Fiji. 

“We successfully built two houses for a couple of families in a local village just out of Nadi. My main highlight was handing over the houses, seeing the joy on the faces of the locals and knowing that we had finished what we came for. Another highlight was visiting the schools, seeing the local school kids who were overjoyed to spend time with us whilst we painted one of their classrooms.” - James 11JGER

“The greatest part about the trip was, hands-down, the people both in the group and in Fiji. The people in Fiji were some of the kindest people I’ve ever met. The people managing our build took such good care of each one of us by feeding us delicious food, keeping us safe on the build site as well as giving us a good laugh at times too. The children both in the schools and in the villages had the most beautiful smiles and laughs and were full of so much excitement and energy. I’m so glad that this trip provided me the opportunity to meet so many people because I loved every person I met.” - Sophie 12LNEL

“The connections that I built with the team and the Fijians in the community had such an impact on me, and I have no doubt I will continue to remember and hopefully continue the friendships I made. One of the trip’s many highlights was finishing the two houses we started to build. I don’t think before coming on this trip or even while building the houses it really sunk in how much these homes meant. Overall, this trip has changed my perspective on our world, opened my eyes to the impact of service and helped me create lifelong friendships.” - Ella 11BTOO

“Being able to help people who have lived in poverty by building them a proper house was a life-changing experience. Building the houses was both fun and rewarding; teamwork was essential to this exercise. I enjoyed meeting and working with the locals, [and was] inspired by their general joy for life. I believe I have grown into a stronger, more caring person due to this experience.” - Jack 11NFLE

“The Habitat trip exceeded all my expectations. The highlight of the trip for me was one day, when we went to a school in a village we visited and painted the year 1 classroom. It combined service and the friendships we were making into one. I haven’t stopped talking about the trip since I got back, and I would say to anyone considering it at all – do it.”Ella 11NFLE

You can watch a recap of their experience here.

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Ski Trip

Undertaking a new activity can be challenging and daunting. Luckily for the five staff members who wanted to try their hand at skiing in the third week of the school holidays, 40 supportive, patient, open-minded, non-judgmental students decided to accompany them to Falls Creek. With the blizzard hitting just days before we arrived, we were able to access almost the entire mountain. While the long-range forecast had suggested Mr Sun would be decidedly absent for the entire week, he made an appearance on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, which meant bluebird skiing for all. Wednesday was awful, with wind and rain dominating the afternoon, but even this was tolerable as, after all, we were in the snow.

Many thanks go to the students for the manner in which they conducted themselves. They made the trip a pleasure to coordinate. Thanks also goes to the staff for their contribution to making the trip a worthwhile school experience.

Stewart Kleidon
Ski Trip Coordinator

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Choosing College Devices: Why the Surface Pro?

Moving to one-to-one student devices in 2011 meant the College heavily invested in research and evaluation of the various vendors’ available devices and support. In the Middle and Senior School, HP laptops were chosen, and the Primary campus chose Apple iPads and MacBooks. In any assessment of our student devices, a large number of factors are considered, including: appropriateness for supporting and enhancing learning activities, weight, size, battery life, durability, serviceability, insurance, and cost.

The Apple iPad has so far proven effective for learning at the St John’s Campus, ticking many of the necessary boxes. On the Concordia campus, the HP laptops were generally very good, although they lacked durability (a high damage rate of five to seven devices per week), were still comparatively heavy, and battery life was limited to less than six hours a day on ordinary use.

Microsoft introduced the Surface Pro in 2013, and we included it as an option in every annual review of devices, but we only considered it as a serious student device option in 2016 after visiting several schools using the devices. The factors that convinced us to trial Surface Pros in 2016 included: significant durability with a tough protective case, pen and touch technology, weight and portability. Our main concerns were the minimal RAM (4GB), slightly smaller screen, and battery life wasn’t significantly better than the laptops we were using.

However, the game changer for us came in 2018 when Microsoft beefed up the processor and included 8GB RAM, making the device comparably slightly more powerful than the laptops we could supply, and offered a battery life of up to 13 hours per day. Basically, the latest Surface is a better device than the equivalent laptops, and plenty of tech reviews support what we’ve observed. In addition, since adopting Surface Pros, our annual damage repairs and insurance costs for student devices have significantly reduced, Microsoft support is excellent for warranty and repairs, and we have access to additional Microsoft teacher training and the Microsoft education community.

With Surface Pros extending into 2020 for Year 12s, we will continue to closely monitor and evaluate whether the Surface Pro meets our needs as an education environment at other levels. It has ticked almost all the boxes so far.

Tony Shillitoe
Director of Digital Resources

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Year 10 and 11 Meningococcal Vaccinations

2019 School Immunisation Program


Second Visit Reminder for Parents of Year 10 and 11 Students

  • Year 10 2nd Meningococcal B Vaccine & Meningococcal ACWY
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Eastern Health Authority (EHA – ) will be visiting the College on TUESDAY 13 AUGUST 2019 to administer the 2nd dose of Meningococcal B vaccines for Years 10 & 11 and 1st (only) dose of Meningococcal ACWY for Year 10 students where consent has been provided.

Students will be advised, via an email, of the time for their immunisation and have permission to wear their P.E. uniform on the day. 

If you did not receive a consent form and you wish your child to be vaccinated, please ask for one at the SSO. If unavailable, contact EHA on 8132 3600. 

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

Please notify us if

  • Your child has already had the 2nd Men B vaccine 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.
Sue Bates

Medical Support Officer

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Year 9 Parent Dinner

On Friday, 21 June, Year 9 parents came together to enjoy their annual Greek dinner.  It was a plentiful banquet hosted in The Suaviter, which had been transformed into a gorgeous Greek setting. Guests also enjoyed taking part in the Zorba. 

Thank you to the Year 8 parents who helped out in the kitchen and front of house, and to the P&F members and volunteers who set up the room and made this event a wonderful success.  

We are really looking forward to the Year 10/11 Parent Dinner coming up on Friday, 9 August, which will be an Indian-style banquet. Year 9 parents are invited to assist as volunteers at this event. If you're able to spare an hour, please contact Angela Warrick.

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Old Concordians' Association Melbourne CBD Series Reunion

The 2019 Melbourne Reunion was held at the Richmond Hotel's Rooftop Bar on Friday, 19 July. A group of eager Old Concordians braved the wintry Melbourne weather to meet and enjoyed catching up with friends from Concordia days over good food and wine, with some travelling quite a distance to attend. See you again in 2021, Melbourne!

Sue Spry
Alumni Manager


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Debating Results - Term 2, Week 8

Year 7s defeated by Woodcroft. Speakers: Terenzo, Indi, Peter. Lily was chairperson. Topic: That we should invest in colonising Mars.

Year 8s narrowly defeated by Norwood Morialta. Speakers: Kate, James, Alicia. Topic: That Australians are too obsessed with sport.

Year 11s received their topic 90 minutes before the debate and defeated Loreto. Speakers: Ella, Anne & Kaelah. Jess was timekeeper. Topic: ‘That millennials are not lazy!’

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Student Achievements

ali garcia silver noah english bronzeCongratulations to Allie 9TPRE and Noah 9PSIM who represented SA Metro at the U16 Australian Basketball Championships in Darwin during the July school holidays. The girls and boys teams both played well and finished with silver and bronze medals respectively. A fantastic achievement!

Aimee 9TPRE also represented the state during the mid-year break at the 2019 National Girls Youth Soccer Championships in Coffs Harbour. Well done!

Congratulations to Eloise 9LSIM who recently sat a fourth Grade AMEB Saxophone exam. Eloise received an A+ (High Distinction) for her efforts. A wonderful achievement!

Congratulations to Oliver 12RSOM who recently sat a fourth Grade AMEB Bassoon exam. Oliver received an A (Distinction) for his efforts, which is an excellent result!

Well done to Breanna 9LSIM who was recently announced as a finalist in the Young Writers' Awards for 2019. We wish Breanna all the best in the finals!

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From the Archives

This week we look back on the naming of the oldest and arguably most iconic building at Concordia College, the Hamann Wing, named after Dr Henry P A Hamann, a highly respected staff member who served as headmaster of Concordia College from 1939 to 1953.


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