Dear Parents and Carers,
Today we proudly celebrate World Teachers Day, and on behalf of our teaching and support staff, I thank the P&F for their thoughtful morning tea earlier today. I am very proud of how our teachers assist boys to become fine young men who are good citizens and are encouraged to live out the gospels. Each teacher in our College has made a conscious choice to teach boys. They know that raising good young men is fundamentally about celebrating and respecting the dignity of each boy’s unique gifts and strengths. In partnering with our parents and families, our teachers take their role in developing and supporting boys to strive for their personal best very seriously. It is our first and foremost obligation. They understand the importance of how we can model, establish and maintain positive, trusting and respectful relationships. Our teaching and support staff are great role models who are forthright and caring in their support of boys developing their confidence and courage to be comfortable within themselves and to excel. On many occasions, I have repeated my firm belief that boys will ‘learn’ about the teacher before they learn about the subject. They crave social connection and acceptance within the learning environment. That is why I applaud our teaching and support staff, not only for today but especially for their understanding and appreciation of the natural rhythm of boys – student trial and error, success and failure – in allowing them to be vulnerable, adaptive, empathetic and ultimately resilient. The full range of opportunities they provide and the relationships they foster are crucial to our success in fostering emotionally literate boys.
I was pleased to learn that 100 percent of our Year 12 students who chose to apply for early entry into University were successful in gaining an offer this year. This is an extraordinary strike rate and is reinforced by a senior Professor at UOW sharing with me earlier this year how he is always very impressed when he interviews the senior students from ERC.
It was wonderful to be able to once again connect with the parents and carers of Year 7 2023 last Wednesday evening as we warmly welcomed them to our community and shared with them some key information in preparation for the start of next year. The interest and demand for places in ERC is very strong as we continue to invest in our teacher development programs in providing such a broad array of student learning opportunities.
Next week the wider Church celebrates the solemnity of All Saints. A time when we honour the many saints, known or unknown, who modelled their lives on Jesus and his great commandment of love. It is also a time when we are each asked to consider our attitudes towards our neighbours – to show understanding, forgiveness and compassion. In this school, I regularly witness practical examples of how our community reaches out in solidarity with those in need. Whether it be through fundraising for a range of charitable organisations like Caritas or the missions, or through students and staff volunteering their time in the Christian Service and Solidarity Learning Program (CSL) to assist those in need, the ERC community demonstrates a genuine level of care and empathy for others within our society.
Pope Francis has previously stated that, “Being a saint is not a privilege of the few … The path that leads to holiness has a name and has a face; it’s the face of Jesus Christ; He teaches us to become saints.”
Congratulations to Bishop Brian Mascord on his 30th Anniversary of faith-filled service to the Catholic Church.