Mock Trials

On Wednesday night, in Court 3 of the Supreme Court, our team Compassion was very narrowly defeated by St Mary's Anglican Girls' School Year 12 team in the semi-final of the competition. Barristers Annabel Beech and Matthew Lau, solicitor Jacob Donovan, witnesses Jessica Pham and Will Williamson and Judge's Associate Emily Hackett were an inspiring team supported by a group of our beautifully uniformed and polite students. Many thanks to those who have helped us this year in the competition; Justice Andrew Beech and coaches Kate Pedersen and Stefan Tomasich. I look forward to another successful year of Mock Trials in 2013.


Earlier this week the world was saddened by the news of the death of Neil Armstrong. Many of us can remember the exact moment he stepped onto the surface of the Moon. His passing is a poignant reminder of the brevity of our lives and yet the magnitude of the potential we have as humans to make a difference in all manner of ways. Given the powerful significance of his achievement and that of the team with him it is all the more wonderful that a group of our Year 11 students was able to travel to Carnarvon earlier this year to meet Buzz Aldrin, speak with him and present him with a gift from John XXlll College. This road trip foregrounded our interest in science and in astronomy and gave these students a connection to history that will be unforgettable.

As some of you are aware, on the last day of Term 2 our telescope had an accident, putting it out of action for the entire winter. From the beginning of Term 4 we will engage in regular stargazing through the Asteroid Imaging Project. Evenings by then should be warmer and night skies clear again. We will keep you informed about repairs to our telescope.


On Thursday night a group of Year 11 Magis students presented the results of their work in SmARTS this year to a very receptive audience in the Octagon Theatre at the University of Western Australia. Jessica Pham, Jacob Donovan, Matthew Lau, Stephanie Liddelow, William Paparo, Thomas McNeilly, William Crouch and Emily Hackett have spent some months working at UWA in the Faculty of Arts with students from other metropolitan schools on projects such as; "Culture: Cancer of the Earth". Jessica Pham, Jacob Donovan and Matthew Lau were in the group that won the award for Academic Excellence, Thomas McNeilly and William Crouch were in the group that were runners up for People's Choice and Matthew Lau was voted Best Group Member by his group. They all received certificates from the University and I am very proud of them. William Paparo, Emily Hackett and Stephanie Liddelow were also outstanding in their group, their imagination and confidence was awe-inspiring. Overall SmARTS 2012 has been superb for John XXlll College and seeing our students step up as leaders in their peer group beyond the safe confines of our College speaks volumes about what a noticeable difference John XXlll College can make.

Atticus Finch Justice Award

On Monday this week, the fourteen Year 10 finalists in the Atticus Finch Justice Award presented their outstanding speeches to their entire year cohort. Each student's work was impassioned, well-structured and perfectly delivered. All students displayed a real understanding of synthesising research and ideas to create an argument about seeking justice and freedom for others. The final winner, by a unanimous decision was Lucas Daniels. His speech moved one of the four judges to tears. He spoke with quiet confidence, without notes, without hesitation and held the audience in the palm of his hand. The sincerity of his words highlighted the power of our College motto: "Seek Justice".