Radford Bulletin Term 3, Week 7 – 4 September 2019

Staff Insights

Chaplain Fr Richard Browning

Chaplain's Reflection: Anyway

4 September 2019

Zilla's story: why the organist matters more than the quality of the music



(This reflection references the poem Anyway widely associated with Mother Teresa, and deriving from The Paradoxical Commandments, by Dr. Kent M. Keith) 

When I first moved to the Gold Coast, as a young and freshly minted priest, one of my roles was to host a weekly Wednesday Holy Communion at St James, Biggera Waters. There was a vibrant gathering of really old people, filled with laughter, fun and people of character.

When I first arrived, I wondered why the organ playing was so bad. Of course, mental note, “Fix that organ music and the people will come in hordes!” 

It was so bad at times it was comical. You know: an off major chord played as the organist leant on the ivories to lever herself up onto the stool. Notes went missing, and thin chords were half played on off beats and out of key. I found myself thinking that my second-born son, nearly one, could crawl across the keys and make a better sound. I think I learnt how to sing really loud there at St James, so as to mask the wretched, awful sound of the organ. 

That was until I learnt Zilla’s story...

Zilla was the organist. She was a widow of some years and previously had been a violinist of note. She and her husband – a flautist – used to play duets around the coast. They had quite a reputation. It is difficult to know exactly what happened, but most likely, their adult son who lived with them fell asleep while smoking. He had a disability, and Zilla and her husband were his proud and protective parents. Only one person escaped the house fire alive, Zilla. Zilla had horrible burns to her hands and arms, parts of her palms were melted, and some of her fingers were fused together.

Zilla could not play the violin ever again. But she loved music too much, and hymns too much, and the community loved her too much, so she learnt to play the piano and organ.

And ever since, I have learnt to pull my head in, and I, like all the other people at 9.30am on a Wednesday, loved hearing Zilla play, and delighted in her wiry, stubborn fingers reaching as far as they were allowed, creating what became the strangest sounds of heaven, and angels could be heard to sing, and it was us. 

So, you see, there may be plenty of reasons not to play. But play anyway.
Whatever you’ve got, whatever it is. Give it all, and play anyway.
Even when you are rubbish. Play anyway.
Even when your heart far outweighs your ability, play anyway.
When you are feeling overwhelmed and undervalued and not sure if your love matters,
love anyway.
When you are not sure where the meaning is, or if there is any at all, be the meaning, and play anyway.
       (cf. Viktor Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning

And God, our God,
the one whose Son died on a cross as an accursed criminal
before a small, uncomprehending distant crowd, gave his life anyway
– poured out everything, anyway –
even when the mobs and executioners did not know what they were doing
– and died anyway –
and rose to a few fearful confused women, and rose anyway,
and to this day gives a peace which is beyond understanding, yet gives it anyway:
this God is witness to our days. Every single day. 

So, under the loving gaze, and with the eternal presence of our Creator God,
We are invited, beyond what might make sense,
to love anyway.

Despite people being self-centred or blind
to forgive anyway.

And where people are judgemental and unreasonable and ungrateful
we would be kind anyway.

Where we can spend years building something which could easily be destroyed in a day;
we will build anyway.

And whatever good we might do today will be forgotten tomorrow
we will do good today anyway.

And while science is sidelined for political football, while the environment groans,
we will care and act anyway.

And while compassion is removed from refugees forced to move,
We will be compassionate anyway.

And while at peace and fulfilled, there might be others with mean spirits and bitter hearts
we will be fulfilled anyway.

Oh Lord our God,
That with the many peoples of the world,
we would walk in wisdom
and rise in compassion
and live in truth:
breathe your Spirit over this land. Amen.





Karen Mahar, Acting Head of Junior School

JS News, 4 Sept 2019

4 September 2019

Karen Mahar, Acting Head of Junior School

Events, Rostrum, swimming program, canteen, achievements and more

Dates for your diary 

Thursday 5 Sept

Kindergarten Excursion to Canberra Theatre

Friday 6 Sept

Father’s Day/welcome to Andy Gordon breakfast
Year Exc 1 to Canberra Theatre

Tuesday 10 Sept

6TH Exc to Questacon
1MH Exc to Barton Grocer
ACT U12 Track and Field

Wed 11 Sept

Year 3 Parent Camp Info Session
Year 1 Learning Journey
6TW Exc to Questacon
6DM Exc to Questacon



Learning journeys

We thank all parents and caregivers for taking time out of their busy schedules to attend the Learning Journeys conducted over the past fortnight, the PK and Year 1 Learning Journeys are yet to come.        

A Learning Journey provides our students with the opportunity to guide their parents and carers through a selection of authentic learning experiences. It provides an opportunity for each student to proudly articulate their understanding of these learnings.

The Junior School Staff have revelled in the high levels of enthusiasm and engagement displayed by both students and families.

Learning Journeys Learning Journeys


Pyjama Day

There was great frivolity today, when the JS students wore their PJs to school.

The RTC took the initiative to raise awareness of equality and equity. This idea came from the recent Year 6 inquiry into Sharing the Planet.

The money raised will be donated to the National Pyjama Day organisation (https://www.nationalpyjamaday.com). This group supports kids in need and helps to give them opportunities they otherwise wouldn’t have. 

Father’s Day Breakfast

Almost any man can be a father - but it takes someone special to be a Dad

Please join us this Friday, September 6th, when the Junior School is having a breakfast to celebrate our dads. The Junior School community will also be welcoming another dad joining us, Mr Andy Gordon. Breakfast starts at 7:45am sharp. 

The oval will be open for parking. We thank you (in anticipation) for your patience at this time, when large numbers of people are expected to be moving around the campus. 

Swimming program

We are delighted to advise that all Kindergarten students will be participating in a pilot swimming program in Term 4. 

This program presents itself as an exciting opportunity for students to learn to swim, and learn potentially life-saving skills, in addition to acquiring a sense of confidence with pool safety that can’t have a price put on it. 

There will also be an opportunity for forty non-swimming Year 2 students to participate in a learn to swim program. 

More details to follow in the coming weeks. 

Junior Swimming


JS Canteen

We would like to remind all parents and carers about the Flexischools online ordering system our College canteen offers, which enables families to place lunch orders online, a day/week/month in advance. Please take care when placing your orders, as the confusion caused by inaccurate or misplaced lunch orders can affect multiple people and is best avoided.  

Please feel free to provide feedback or offer suggestions on how our canteen service may serve you better. 


Keren Zhang


Year 5 student, Keren Zhang, very ably represented Radford Junior School at the ACT Rostrum finals, held at UC on Monday evening.

Keren enhanced her already well-earned reputation as an accomplished public speaker.

Well done Keren.  



As our Winter sports approach the end of the season, there is much reason to celebrate, many fine achievements by both individuals and teams. These include:

  • Athletes representing the College at Zone Athletics
  • Rugby, netball and soccer teams
  • Sue Geh Cup and Jamie Pearlman Cup Basketball competitions.

Three Year 5 & 6 teams played some energetic and skilful cricket in the ACT comp. It was reported that they were wonderful ambassadors for the College and their families.

Thanks to Brad Luhrs, Darryle Macdonald and Dianne Wilson for supporting our Year 5 and 6 cricketers. 

Current character strength spotlight - bravery

Character strength

It seems important that we learn to become tolerant of making mistakes and that we see them as wonderful learning opportunities. The saying “Success has many fathers and failure is an orphan” suggests that we all like to take credit for any success achieved, either directly or indirectly, while reluctant to acknowledge any involvement in a failed endeavour or action, and in doing so, we can often miss the learning being offered and make ourselves look silly in the process.

We encourage our students to make mistakes, to be brave when facing challenges, threats or difficulties. It also involves valuing a goal and showing courage by acting upon it.




Collegian Kelsey Davis (Class of 2008), at Columbia University

Collegian News: Kelsey Davis, Class of 2008

3 September 2019

Collegians Association

Kelsey has won a scholarship for LLM studies at Columbia University

By the Collegians Association

Visit the Collegians website

Kelsey Davis (Class of 2008 and 2008 ambassador) has been awarded a scholarship by the Banking and Financial Services Law Association (BFSLA) to study for the degree of Master of Laws (LLM) at Columbia Law School. She was one of two recipients to be awarded a 2019 scholarship.

The BFSLA is an association which aims to share information and provide “thought leadership” on banking and financial services law issues. The scholarship provides a significant amount of funding to assist with the costs of study at Columbia.

Kelsey hopes to become a leading advocate in the regulation and enforcement of financial services law. She developed this interest during her studies at the Australian National University in 2010-2014, and also in her subsequent career as a lawyer. Her career so far has included working as an Associate to Justices Foster and Lee at the Federal Court of Australia, and working in Financial Services Enforcement at the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). She has been working at ASIC for the past year, conducting high profile investigations and litigation involving the big four banks and large financial services institutions.

At Columbia, Kelsey will be taking classes in corporate governance, financial regulation, litigation and white-collar crime. She also hopes to be involved in university activities outside classes, including the Law Revue (a comedy performance put on by law students), and Student Senate, as well as working as a Research Assistant to one of the professors. Outside university, she will be playing hockey for New York City Field Hockey Club. In the US Spring, she would like to undertake an internship with the New York State Attorney General or United Nations.

Kelsey says, “My goals for the year are to enjoy my studies and life in New York as much as possible, while making the most of the incredible opportunities provided by Columbia and the city”.

Kelsey arrived in New York on 7 August and has been settling in and attending orientation classes since then. She has shared some pictures from her first few days in New York.

“As you can see, the campus is incredibly beautiful, and I have been enjoying getting to know the other LLM students.”

Columbia University Orientation 2019 Columbia University, New York, Library



Celebrating the Dirrum Festival 2019

Dirrum Festival in review

3 September 2019

Mandy Wang

Challenging and inspiring young minds, cultivating the leaders of tomorrow

By Mandy Wang

On Saturday 17 August, a group of compassionate speakers and an open-minded audience gathered at the Boiler Lecture Theatre at the University of Canberra.

The Dirrum Festival aims to challenge and inspire young minds, cultivating the leaders of tomorrow. This year’s Dirrum Festival did exactly that and much more. 

This year’s speakers discussed a wide variety of topics.

Simon Illingworth discussed the implications of being a truth-teller within the justice system. His story was confronting and powerful, posing the question: how can we encourage people to be truthful in law enforcement, when doing so may risk one’s autonomy? Simon’s response is simple, “Just because everyone does it, doesn’t make it right,” highlighting everyone’s responsibility to have the courage to address a problem when they see one.

Professor Ian Chubb’s talk emphasised the problems that his generation are leaving behind for future generations. There is no solution to climate change, rather, it must be managed. Professor Chubb stresses the unrealistic goals set out in the Paris Agreement, if a global effort is not applied. His topic epitomised the purpose of Dirrum: to engage young minds and inspire change.  

Sophia Hamblin Wang is a driving force of change, running a company that provides a solution in reducing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Her proposal is to take carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere and transform it into building materials.

Valerie Browning provided insight to the one of the hottest inhabited parts of the world, Afar, a place many people have not even heard of. Whilst it is becoming increasingly difficult for this community to live in their ancient nomadic ways, due to the impacts of climate change, we have much to learn from them. The Afar community believe in facing problems together; holding off the consumption of resources to allow renewal before continued use.

Melissa Breen Few people have a better grasp of the feeling of failure and success than Melissa Breen, the current record holder for the Australian Women’s 100m sprint. Her conflict between her own definition of success and the external labels of success has been has seen her battle with mental health on and off the track. Her experience has made her passionate about reaching out to people and highlighting the importance of developing resilience and wellbeing in the community. 

Caitlin Figueredo is an advocate for diversity and equality. Her talk focused on empowering those who are diverse and creating inclusive opportunities for those who are marginalised. 

Unfortunately, Kevin Hines was unable to attend the event due to a flight cancellation, however, his 25-minute video presentation can be accessed through the Dirrum Dirrum website. Kevin’s incredible story of surviving a suicide attempt leaves a powerful message: everyone has their own battles, and our resilience as a community allows us to move forward collectively.

Despite the many complications on the day, the Dirrum team still managed to put together a spectacular event, which was complemented by the festival of live music, local sustainable food stalls, and local businesses.

Well done to the 2019 Dirrum Team for putting together such a successful event!

Certificates were awarded in Assembly (L-R) Stephen Pantazetzis, Sriya Talapeneni, Bridie Liu, Michael Guthrie, Josh Dias, Aa

The Australian History Competition

4 September 2019

Outstanding results for all our participating students

By Nick Ewbank, Head of History, Philosophy and RaVE 

The Australian History Competition is an annual competition for students in Years 7-10.  It takes the form of reading a set of stimulus material and answering 50 multiple choice questions in 45 minutes.  It is a test of their critical and analytical skills, as well as of their historical knowledge. 

This year, 11 students across all four year groups chose to compete, and the results were very strong indeed!  The six students listed below achieved High Distinctions, and the remaining five all achieved Distinctions.


Year 7

Year 8

Year 9

Year 10

Pranav Vallurupalli

Evelyn Toyne

Brian Chen

Terry Yang

Aaron Liu

Michael Guthrie

Well done and hearty congratulations to all the students!


L-R  Stephen Pantazetzis, Sriya Talapeneni, Bridie Liu, Michael Guthrie, Josh Dias, Aaron Liu and Will Gregory.

Save the date for the Senior Drama production

Senior Drama, save the dates Oct 17-19

27 August 2019


Don't miss this fabulous comedy classic!

The 2019 Senior Drama production will be Oscar Wilde's celebrated comedy, The Importance of Being Earnest. 

Thursday 17th October
Friday Night 18th October
Saturday 19th October. 

Doors open at 6pm with food and drinks served before the show.

Show starts at 7pm.




Radford ACT Schools Cup team

Snowsports: ACT Schools Cup 2019

3 September 2019

Jonathan Mandl, Snowsports Technical Director

Radford College snowsports athletes crowd the podium

Jonathan Mandl, Snowsports Technical Director

Secondary School Boys trophyOn Sunday 1 September, under perfect blue skies and with excellent snow conditions, Radford Snowsports team contested the two primary school cups and two secondary school cups in both ski and snowboard events.

Both our boys and girls’ teams enjoyed the sweet taste of victory, winning the ACT Primary Girls’ Cup and ACT Secondary Boys’ Cup – an outstanding result!

Our senior girls team narrowly missed securing the ACT Secondary Girl’s Cup (2nd) and our junior boys’ team placed 3rd in a strong effort from our future stars.

Many outstanding individual and team performances ensured the whole team made its mark on the event in this ninth year of the championships.

Radford College takes special pride in this event which was founded by the Friends of Radford Snowsports (FoRS) in conjunction with Snowsports ACT, an enduring relationship over many years now.

The Straight Line Ski & Scuba ACT Schools Cup keeps growing in size and participation, designed as an end-of-season event for those who may not be going on to Australian Interschools to enjoy one last challenge for the season, or a chance for any Radford student who enjoys recreational skiing or snowboarding to try the fun of racing in good company. If you’re keen – chat with us in early 2020!

After her first taste of racing in 2018, we welcomed back Tahlia Smith in our Division 6 team. She keeps improving with every race, shaving almost five seconds off her first run time in the second run of the day. Well done, Tahlia!

Many thanks to our dedicated parents Sam Smith, Al Ewer and Caroline Walker, who kindly assisted as volunteer course officials to ensure a safe and fair event, especially our Dads like Mr Greer, who enjoyed a very special Father’s Day witnessing the success!

Snowboard Giant Slalom
Maggie Potter & Emma Brennan – Div 2F SBGS – Team 1st
Maggie Potter– Div 2F SBGS – 2nd
Emma Brennan – Div 2F SBGS – 3rd
Bonnie Hardy – Div 4F SBGS – 2nd
Brayden Purvis-Smith – Div2M SBGS – 3rd
Bailey Purvis-Smith – Div4M SBGS – 4th

Alpine Giant Slalom
Amelie Smith – Div 5 GS – 4th
Darcy Barlow, Tom Georgalis, Alexander Li and Lincoln Lee – Div 5M Team 1st
Audrey Potter, Emily Hinchcliffe and Charlie Lee – Div 4F Team 1st
Oscar Bush, Bailey Purvis-Smith and Connor Kruger – Div 4M Team 3rd
Jake Smith, Finlay Barlow, Niki Georgalis and Sunny Smith – Div 3M Team 1st
Danielle Ewer, Maggie Potter, Evie Georgalis and Katherine Hinchcliffe – Div 2F Team 1st
Danielle Ewer – Div 2F – 2nd
William Brake, Tom Ewer, Louis Hearn and Brayden Purvis-Smith - Div2M GS – Team 1st
William Brake – Div 2M GS – 1st
Louis Hearn – Div 2M GS – 3rd
Alexander Schofield, Campbell Kruger, Josh Kluth and Xavier Pauza - Div2M GS – Team 3rd
Andrew Kerr, Ethan Kruger and Oscar Gordon – Div 1M – Team 1st
Andrew Kerr – Div 1M – 2nd

Radford won the Secondary School Boys category




Radford College crest

Parent-Teacher-Student Conversations

28 August 2019

Nerida Dyne

Important information about bookings and other arrangements

Y7-12 Parent-Teacher-Student Conversations Bookings open Wednesday 4 September at 7.00 am
Click for full details. 

The 2019 Semester 2 Secondary School Parent-Teacher-Student Conversations will be held in the Morison Centre and Mackinnon Building classrooms on:

  • Tuesday 17 September, 3.00 pm–8.00 pm, and 
  • Monday 23 September, 3.00 pm–8.00 pm. 

We expect students to attend with their parents or caregivers.

Booking Information
Bookings are made through Radford Online. Your Radford Online user name and password are printed on the top of your child’s 2019 Commencement Letter. A Radford Online user guide is available on our website.

Bookings open on Wednesday 4 September at 7.00 am and close midnight the night before each interview day.

We encourage you to make bookings early to avoid disappointment. The conversation time with each teacher will be five minutes.

Remembering team mate Lewis Cary

Sports Report, 4 Sept 2019

3 September 2019

Sports Department

Football, Basketball, Rugby, Netball finals, Sports Presentation Evening

The National Premier League Youth Football season ended on Sunday after 26 rounds. Radford is the only school in the National Premier League competition in the country and the players represented the school with great pride.

The season began back in March and included a 5am departure, 5-hour trip to Griffith in April. All teams improved immensely throughout the season with the U16s finishing the final round of the season with a win and the U13s a draw. The U13s were unlucky not to make semi-finals, finishing 6th out of 13 in a tight competition.

The U18s match saw a pre-match ceremony attended by several students, staff and parents in memory of Lewis Cary who was a key member of the team. Players and spectators stood in his honour at the 20th minute mark, and the shirt number Lewis wore which will now be retired from the Radford Football program.

Basketball Trials U19 Division 1, 2 or 3
Boys born 2002, 2003 & 2004 wishing to be considered for U19 Division 1, 2 or 3 for the 2019/20 Summer Basketball season are required to attend an additional trial this Friday, 6 September, from 4:00-6:00pm in the Radford G Wigg Sports Centre. Any players unable to attend please email Orhan.Memedovski@radford.act.edu.au

(Social team players, Division 4, 5 or 6, do not need to attend the trial. Players planning on forming a social team should email their team members and nominated division to Orhan.Memedovski@radford.act.edu.au)


ASC Basketball

ASC Boys Basketball
On Monday 26 August, the Radford Year 7/8, Year 9/10 and Year 11/12 basketball teams competed in the annual ASC Men’s Basketball competition.

All teams played exceptionally well. The Year 7/8 team made it through to the semi-finals, but went down to Marist.

In the Year 9/10 division, Radford progressed to the final, where they narrowly went down to Marist 38-40.

Our Year 11/12 team also made it to the final. It was a hard-fought match with Marist eventually taking home the trophy. 

The U18 Girls’ Rugby Team went down in a tight game against Wests. It was an outstanding display of attack, defence and determination. 

U18 Girls Rugby U18 Girls Rugby



Monday 16 September
G Wigg Sports Centre

Students and parents are invited to attend their sport presentation/s. Each sport will have its own 30-minute presentation run by the Technical Directors and Captains.

Food and drinks, including the return of the Mr Papa and Boss Burger food vans as well as sushi, will be available for purchase before and after each presentation.

Students are required to wear their winter school uniform.

4:30-5:00pm – Orienteering
5:00-5:30pm – Snowsports
5:30-6:00pm – Netball
6:00-6:30pm – Football (U8-18 teams only)
6:30-7:00pm – Basketball (U10-19 teams only)

** Kindergarten and Year 1 Academy students will be presented with their certificates (football and basketball) at their final session on Saturday 14 September.


Winter Sport Finals continue this Saturday with 6x Netball Semi Finals at Lyneham:

Radford Gold (Firsts – Year 10-12 girls) 3 v 4 Elimination Final – 1:45pm
Radford Silver (Year 10-12 girls) 1 v 2 Qualifying Final – 3:15pm
Radford Maroon (Year 11 & 12 girls) 1 v 2 Qualifying Final – 1:45pm
Radford Green (Year 8 & 9 girls) 1 v 2 Qualifying Final – 11:30am
Radford Red (Year 7 girls) 3 v 4 Elimination Final – 11:30am
Radford Dolphins (Year 5 & 6 girls & boys) 3 v 4 Elimination Final – 10:30am

If you have the time, the students would appreciate your support!


Book now for this fabulous P&F event

P&F Trivia Night 2019

4 June 2019

P&F Association

Book now for this great event!

P&F Crest

Date: Friday 20 September 2019

Time: 6:30pm

Venue: TB Millar Hall

Tickets: $11 per person or $100 for table of 10.  

Booking online: https://www.trybooking.com/BBKBA

Please note that this event is for people over 18 only.

Radford College crest

Whooping Cough/Pertussis Notication

26 August 2019

Sophie Davis, College Nurse

A case of Whooping Cough has been reported in a Y10 student

By College Nurse, Sophie Davis

The College has had one reported case of Whooping Cough (Pertussis) in a Year 10 student.

Please be aware that this is a notifiable disease, and children with the disease should be kept away from school. A fact sheet is attached below, but please contact your doctor or ACT Health on 6205 2155 for more information or advice.

Pertussis/Whooping Cough
ACT Health: 
Pertussis/Whooping cough fact sheet

  • Children (or Adults) with coughing symptoms should be reviewed by their GP. The GP should be informed that a person with whooping cough/pertussis has been diagnosed at the College and request a nose swab test. This is most accurate in the first 4 weeks of coughing. There is no need to have your child tested if they do not have a cough.
  • If your Doctor diagnoses Whooping cough, please inform the College and keep your child at home until they have taken 5 days of antibiotics. Keep coughing children away from babies.
  • Whooping cough vaccines give good protection against infection but immunity fades. Parents and grandparents can be given a booster dose of dTpa to help protect young babies.



Music recitals schedule

Music recital schedule for Term 3