On Strowan – Volume 14 // Issue 5 // 4 July 2019
The Secondary School covers Years 9–13. Head of Secondary School is Evert van Florenstein.
We have been blessed with beautiful weather this term, the crisp cold mornings with sunshine all day is encouraging many students to be involved in activity at interval and lunchtime; from the hockey and netball courts, to the two gymnasiums, to the sports fields, boys and girls taking part in fun physical activities.
One of the new initiatives this year has been for my leadership team and I to put time aside each week to spend time in the classrooms with the teachers and students. The level of engagement in classes that I am observing would support that students are being provided with courses and learning opportunities which are both relevant and meaningful to them. I would also like to pay tribute to the high quality learning opportunities the teachers are providing the students, we are very lucky to have such dedicated and hard-working teachers at St Andrew’s College.
Our sports teams are once again tracking very well this season. The First XV Rugby, Boys’ First XI hockey and Girls’ First XI football teams are still unbeaten this season. The Girls’ A netball, basketball and hockey First XI, and the Boys’ A basketball teams are also doing well in their respective premier competitions.
Our cultural groups have also enjoyed significant success this term. I had the pleasure of attending the Canterbury finals for the Chamber Music Contest at The Piano. The standard was unbelievable, all the groups who competed gave superb performances including our own violin quartet, Quartetto Maduro, who were awarded the Best Performance of a New Zealand Piece and a Highly Commended. At the South Island finals, Quartetto Maduro again performed brilliantly and were awarded one of the 12 places in the New Zealand finals to be held in Auckland in early August.
At the Big Sing the senior choir, Staccoro, won the trophy for the Best Mixed Choir.
The Festival of the Spoken Word was again a real highlight. Congratulations to all our competitors, the standard was once again outstanding. The amount of research, preparation, and practice was very evident in
all the performances.
At our Boys’ and Girls’ Assemblies we had Detective Inspector Michael Ford speak to the boys and Hollie Woodhouse to the girls.
Detective Inspector Ford’s message was around the importance of living life by a set of values and having the courage to not be a bystander, but to speak up when you know your set of values are being compromised.
Hollie Woodhouse’s presentation focused on the importance of goal setting and cultivating a positive mindset, and how in the end it is how we choose to respond to life’s ups and downs which makes the difference. At the end of the presentation, Hollie gave all our girls a goal card and challenged them to set a goal focused on cultivating bravery and moving out of their comfort zones.
Congratulations to head students, Luca Vinnell and Lewis Edmond, for organising the first Boys’ Breakfast in many years. This was a very popular and well attended function, with tickets being sold out within 24 hours. The guest speaker was our very own Isaac Giesen (OC 2010) who is the first New Zealander to row the Atlantic Ocean twice in one year. His message was around living by a simple set of rules and to just ‘keep rowing’.
With kind regards,
Evert van Florenstein
Head of Secondary School
Deputy for Rector