The Mainsail Issue 7, December 2020

From the Principal

As the most unusual Christmas break in our lifetime approaches, it is worth reflecting briefly on the year that was.

What have we learned? We know that your health is your most important asset. We know that family is the most important link.

We know that people need people. And we learnt that when faced with a global crisis, buy toilet paper!

I am more likely to see more people I know these holidays than ever before as we are all forced to relax in our own state - but that is okay, as we in Western Australia live somewhere so beautiful.

Please take time over the break to enjoy the company of those that you love. Stay positive knowing that there are better times ahead. Stay safe on the roads, as there will be more of us driving around. And finally, think of those in your community who have lost their jobs, have struggled with isolation, and just need a little smile, pat on the back and a coffee with friends.

We are the Orange Army and we care!

Mr Adrian Pree


From the Deputy of Junior School

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it. - William Arthur Ward

When we are thankful, we call to mind the good things in life. When we are busy, we sometimes take for granted what others do for us and it is not until we stop that we realise just how much we have received. As the holidays commence, I would like to give a heartfelt thanks to everyone in the School community.

First of all, thank you to the students. You have worked very hard during this challenging year. You have developed your skills and grown in confidence (as well as height). We appreciate how you see the lighter side of life. Thank you for making us laugh every day.

Thank you to the teachers. You work tirelessly for the benefit of your students. Teaching isn’t just about preparing lessons and marking. It is organising excursions, camps, planning and running events, attending to the emotional needs of everyone and communicating with parents. Thank you for the long hours that you work and for wearing so many hats.

Thank you to the Satori Team. Your systems of intervention are second to none. You have an endless list of strategies to support students academically, socially and emotionally. We would struggle without you.

Thank you to the education assistants for working directly with the children. Your help does not go unnoticed. You care deeply about the children and will do anything to support them. Thank you also for your intervention strategies.

Thank you to the Grounds and Maintenance Team who keep the School looking great and functioning as it is. A tap breaks, you are there. Furniture needs constructing, you are there. Thank you for the wonderful nature play area you designed and built for the Kindy and Pre-Primary students.

Thank you to the Canteen staff. You make us delicious food and you deal with the flurry of students and staff at recess and lunch.

Thank you to the IT Department. You fix our laptops, you rescue our iPads. Thank you for keeping our computer systems working and operating every single day (yes, that’s weekends included).

Thank you to the Uniform Shop for ordering adequate uniforms. It hasn’t been easy with the shortages this year.

Thank you to the Senior Management Team. You attend to issues, you drive curriculum, you organise relief and you plan and coordinate the construction of buildings. You are there for the staff, the students and parents.

Thank you to the Administration Team for managing enrolments, organising special events, handling the finances, answering phone calls, interviewing and so much more.

Thank you to the parents. You have your children ready for school each day. You cook dinner when you are tired. You help with homework after a long day. You take your children to soccer, swimming, ballet and musical rehearsals. You never ever stop. Thank you for everything you do and for sending your children to St James’.

Thank you to everyone for sticking together this year. We are a resilient bunch! Have a restful and festive time this Christmas. See you in February.

Mr Nicholas Townsend

Deputy of Junior School

From the Head of Senior School

Forging Ahead

We stand today with six years of history at St James’.

What have we achieved? We have established strong foundations, in terms of our culture, buildings, grounds and resources. Importantly, we have developed strong connections with one another and the wider community.

Where are we headed? Expect to see students who are persistent, determined and diligent. Expect to see our students who support one another and celebrate the successes of others. Expect to see St James’ students achieving great things!

What will a St James’ Anglican School graduate look like? Our graduates will stand out. They will operate with drive, energy and purpose. They will work as a team, seek help where necessary and take risks. Most importantly, our graduates will strive for excellence in everything they do!

Mr Chris Hall

Head of Senior School

From the Chaplain

What a year that was!

As we journey towards the end of what can only be described as one of the strangest years to date, I wonder if you have looked back at how much you and your family have changed.

We have in the obvious ways, such as how much students have grown. What has changed for most people, young and old, is their resilience; the way we have adapted to a year that has altered the lives of millions of people.

For me, this is where my faith has helped me to cope and look for the good, despite the fear and panic that began this year. To the continued worry and stress of the ever-current threat, knowing that the love of God is ever-present helps me to remain calm.

As we prepare for the greatest gift the world has ever received, the birth of Christ, we can start to prepare for the time we can be together with family and friends. Yes, in Western Australia we have been very lucky. Our lack of COVID-19 has been due to listening to advice and following instructions.

New words have become a part of our vocabularies, such as Zoom, Teams and live streaming. These have meant that we have increased in our technological know-how and understanding. Something I thought I would never do! By learning to do these things both young and old have become more resilient. Teachers learned to record and deliver lessons online, and children of all ages adapted; not forgetting that parents also had to learn these skills to help their children.

In a world that has changed in so many ways, remember that change can be good, difficult or even just too hard. Together, we have learned to adapt and change. By learning to have something constant and unchanging, we can grow and be accepting of so many different things. The joy of having a belief in Jesus Christ gives us a foundation and strength in every aspect of life. The greatest one being that no matter what can happen, you and I are always loved.

Have a great holiday, a happy Christmas and New Year.

Reverend John Taylor

School Chaplain

Year 5 Camp

With Camp Comes Challenges!

3, 2, 1! The whistle goes! Mud splashes up our legs as we dive under the tyres! This was just the beginning…

The Year 5s had to be more determined than ever when they ventured off on their camp. Scared and nervous faces getting off the bus, we were all set now. One more thing blocked our path: dorms and groups. These determined whether you could work with your group and show leadership, or would you step back and let your group lead you? Walking to your dorm and carrying your luggage with a time limit. This camp will show our true colours. First step - team names, done and dusted. Now to dive into the challenges that lurk in our way.

The time had come, waiting to learn what activities we would get tasked with. These included trusting a rope to let us soar on a flying fox, getting over our fears of creepy crawlies in bushcraft, finding our inner strength in rock climbing, working as a team in the blackout zone, learning to let other people lead in the canoes, working on our map reading skills with orienteering, and bringing out our competitive side in the commando course. All activities tested our knowledge and strength. The sun goes down and we are ready for anything. Our nights ended with a quiz to keep our minds focused.

On the last day, we all had worked hard as a team, not only in our groups but in our dorms. It takes the most teamwork to be able to sleep without being disturbed. On the last day, it was time to pack up our luggage and leave. As we got on the bus, we could hear everyone talking about how much fun it was. I think everyone's favourite was canoeing.

The Year 5 camp was an amazing experience and I wish every camp was like this. Sadly, it had to come to an end. Thank you to the Year 5 teachers, Mr Mornement and Linda Wild for coming with us. Thank you Sean, Derek and Millie for giving up your time. I think everyone faced a fear on Year 5 Camp!

Sascha Higginson

Year 5 Alcock

Year 6 Rottnest Camp

On Monday 9 November the Year 6 cohort arrived at Hillarys Boat Harbour, ready to board the ferry to Rottnest Island. The journey was very rough and there was a 5m swell. The rain and wind didn’t help either, but it was all worth it when we arrived. We collected our bikes and rode to Kingston Barracks. During the 1930s, these dorms were used to home army soldiers during WWI.

We got settled and had some free time before riding to the Visitors Centre, where we completed an Adventure Challenge Foot Race. Later, we had a roast dinner and walked to the cinema to watch Trolls World Tour.

After breakfast the next day we were put into our day groups and headed off to complete our daily activities. Group A cycled to The Basin to snorkel. The water was freezing cold and murky, but it was still a great experience. Group B cycled to Parker Point, which was tough because of the huge hills. We learned about the fauna and flora of the island. After lunch the groups swapped activities.

Later that night we got into groups and participated in a games night. The next morning we packed our bags and rode back to the Visitors Centre to learn about history of the island. After a quick shopping trip we headed to mini-golf and at 4.15pm, boarded the ferry and set sail home on much smoother waters.

It was a fantastic experience; despite the weather. We all had an amazing time. It will be a trip we will never forget.

Amelia Kuiper

Year 6 McKernan

Transition to Senior School

In Week 7 the Year 6 students had the opportunity to be a part of a Senior School lesson. The transition to Year 7 can be daunting for some so this day is designed to make it an easy and smooth transition.

One sure-fire way to do this is to get the students to know all the teachers. The teachers tried to make lesson as fun as possible; according to the Maths teachers nothing is more fun than algebra!

In Maths, students raced each other around a track using algebraic skills along the way. For their English lesson, the Year 6s discovered that vocabulary choices have different connotations and investigated how words can convey positive and negative associations. In HASS, the students took part in a quiz to find out how much they could remember of the news, people, events and entertainment from 2020.

All Senior School teachers are excited to welcome these wonderful students into their classes next year.

Mrs Jennifer George, Mrs Jodie Bastow and Mr Alan McLatchie

Head of Mathematics, English and HASS

Year 6 and 7 Aboriginal Art

This term a selection of Year 6 and 7 Art students took part in an Aboriginal art incursion. This was an introduction to Aboriginal ceremonies and beliefs, experiencing traditional dance around a fire pit and learning about artefacts, signs and symbols.

Students were given time to design their own Aboriginal story from what they learnt during the incursion. From this the DevelopmentWA team who ran the incursion, worked with a local Aboriginal artist to create a 250m hoarding for Marmion Avenue.

We are excited to see the finished piece shortly.

Ms Anna Fletcher

Head of Art

Senior School Pathways Vocational Education and Training

Senior School pathways are building at St James’. This year we have seen students take ownership and interest towards post-school pathways. With the workforce more competitive than ever, it is vital that students build strong foundations and confident work skills to prepare themselves for the world of work.

The curiosity surrounding Vocational Education and Training (VET) programs delivered to secondary students prompted the realisation that every year of growth matters. Acceptance into the program is highly competitive, and students can use their qualification towards their Western Australian Certificate of Education (WACE).

Congratulations to the following students who will be commencing VET qualifications in 2021.

  • Imogen Bean - Certificate II Hairdressing (Salon Assistant)
  • Isabella Canham - Certificate II in Sampling and Measurement
  • Mark O’Donnell - Certificate II in Automotive Vocational Preparation
  • Liam Ridley - Certificate II Electrotechnology (Pre-Apprenticeship)
  • Jade O’Regan - Certificate III in Education Support
  • Luke Roe - Certificate II in Data and Voice Communications
  • Anthony Gangemi - Certificate III in Information, Digital Media and Technology (Web Technologies)

Congratulations to the following students who will be continuing to complete their VET qualifications in 2021.

  • Dylan Scott - Certificate II Electronics
  • Leo Carchrie - Certificate III in Information, Digital Media and Technology (Web Technologies)
  • William Jones - Certificate III in Information, Digital Media and Technology (Web Technologies)
  • Riley Heyworth - Certificate II Building and Construction (Carpentry and Joinery)
  • Georgia Jansen - Certificate IV Musical Theatre

Mrs Ella Pearce

Careers Advisor

Year 10 Outdoor Education Expedition

A Student's Perspective

On Monday 2 November, all Year 10 students begin their five-day Outdoor Education Expedition. When everyone arrived at school on Monday morning, you could say most people were feeling scared, nervous but most importantly excited for the week ahead.

Our experience was by far the best week of our schooling lives, and we are not just telling you what the teachers want us to hear! It was truly the most rewarding, challenging and enjoyable camp we have ever been on. The relationships built with teachers and peers are so special. We saw a different side of people in such a short amount of time.

Throughout the week we walked over 40km and explored Calgardup Cave and Giants Cave. We also abseiled through a small hole in Calgardup Cave and off a 22-meter cliff face at a site called WI16. We attended a bush tucker tour where we canoed and tried many native foods like bush tomato, macadamia nuts, bush pepper, emu, kangaroo and crocodile. We also had Josh from Koomal Dreaming attend our campsite to teach us about Aboriginal culture, including ways to make a traditional fire. We also helped with back up percussion for his amazing didgeridoo melodies.

Yes, there were some challenges like going 13km in the wrong direction and, yes, the hiking was exhausting, but at the end of the day when sitting around the campfire surrounded friends and teachers we forgot about the challenges encountered and focused on the funny and heart-warming experiences from the day.

The most rewarding part of each day was getting back to the campsite, setting up for the night, cooking together and then sitting around the fire to get to know our peers. This camp brought our group so close and brought out the best in people.

By the end of the week, we didn’t want the camp to be over. I think everyone was in tears on the last night as we didn’t want it to end! We had grown so close to everyone.

On behalf of the Year 10 cohort, we would like to say a big thank you to the teachers who attended camp and made it the best experience. And an extra big thank you to Miss Meulenkamp - without you none of these camps would be possible.

Imogen Sarolea and Ellie Mininch

Year 10

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