Celebrating our Foundations
Chris Ivey / Wellbeing
At St Andrew’s we stand up when it is needed, choose to be kind, choose to speak up, and choose to be courageous.
29 July 2022
Foundation Day is like the College’s birthday: an important day as we celebrate and give thanks for the beginnings of St Andrew’s and those who were involved in establishing our college. It is also a day in which we invite our alumni back to share their story with our students, which is a wonderful way to shine a light on what our graduates do after they leave St Andrew’s and a day in which we acknowledge those students and families who have journeyed with us all the way from Prep to Year 12! Each year we also induct our new College Captains. At so many levels, it is a significant day in the life of our college, and it is important that as a community we gather together to acknowledge each aspect.
It was wonderful to induct Lila McIntyre and Jett Levenson as our College Captains and Lily Lethbridge and Will McGarry as our Vice Captains. These four Year 11 students will begin to take over the leadership of our student body, mentored by the current Year 12 student leaders, along with other appointed leaders across the cohort. Leadership roles in our college have a strong focus on culture. Every three weeks I have lunch with the student leaders, and we often talk about their role, not to be standing up the front as a showpiece, but through their integrity and their service, to speak into and promote our culture; to highlight what it means to be a St Andrew’s student and to provide ways in which this culture and character can be both reinforced and developed.
This week in our Secondary assembly, our current College Captains, Will Peterson and Kira Hunter shared the important message about being an ‘up-stander’ rather than a bystander. Their challenge to our students was to step up when they see something that isn’t right. Will and Kira referred to some fascinating studies on human nature highlighting that so often we struggle to be upstanders when are in a group, either because we fear what others will think or even more disappointing, because we think someone else will step up. The clip, shared here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wy6eUTLzcU4
The message to our students was that despite the group around you, step up when you think something is wrong, both in real time, and online. As we know, many students observe examples of injustice online and the challenge from our Year 12 Captains was to step up, to speak out, to challenge inappropriate behaviour that is both disrespectful and causes harm to others. Being an upstander is a big part of our message to students. At St Andrew’s we stand up when it is needed, choose to be kind, choose to speak up, and choose to be courageous. This is the St Andrew’s way, this is our culture, but it is only possible when we work together and actively call out aspects of behaviour.
The role of Captain or College Leader is an incredible opportunity but it’s also a responsibility and the chance to impact in a positive way is very real. Back in 2011, we had two exceptional College Captains, Sam Johnson and Isobelle Woodruff. They were the first to really encapsulate the concept of service or servant leadership and they introduced our very first ‘Pay it forward’. We were fortunate to hear from Sam a couple of years ago at our Foundation Day and this year in 2022, we welcomed Dr Isobelle Woodruff to share her story with our community last week. Isobelle’s reflections on both her time here at the College and her journey post St Andrew’s, was incredibly powerful. Be true to yourself and take every opportunity that comes along. She, like so many of our alumni, are powerful role models for our students, in all the many ways in which they have explored life after school. Graduates who have taken advantage of all that an education at St Andrew’s has offered, who have embraced and held on to our values and graduates who have walked confidently into their futures.
Not every student at St Andrew’s will be a College Captain. However, every student has the same opportunity to give, to learn, to grow, to be challenged and to serve. I want to encourage each and every student to embrace the opportunities that this College provides, to stand up for what is right, to set goals and to do so in a way that is true to who they are. Foundation Day is more than a day to reflect on our foundation, it is day to reflect on what has and more important what can be achieved at both an individual and collective level.
Celebrating our Foundations
July 29, 2022
Stand up, Stand out, Stand for others
July 23, 2021
May 21, 2021