Term 2 - 2007 - No.4

Dear Parents and Caregivers

In this newsletter I would like to highlight some great achievements over the last few weeks.  It is also timely to look at the academic progress of the College at this time.  We tend to get so busy with all the activities going on around us we forget to promote our academic profile.  It is taken for granted that we will do well and I would like to acknowledge the work done by Mr Dravitski in setting the tone for the academic standards in the school, and his team of departmental heads. 
The College Principal, Brother Peter Ryan, is returning from his six month period of leave on Sunday 29 April.  During his time away he has been in Rome with other De La Salle brothers from around the world, and visiting schools in the United States.  I would like to thank the school community for their support in the past six months whilst I have been in the Acting Principal’s role.  It has been a challenge for me but I must confess to some comfort in heading back to the job I know well.

Mrs Milne and Mr Marris have been outstanding in their roles of Acting Deputy Principal and Assistant Principal.

I would like to welcome Kathryn Curd to the staff.  Kathryn has been teaching English at Havelock North High School and has joined our staff on a part-time basis. 

Sadly for us Chevonne Hendrickse, teacher of Economics and Accounting,  has tendered her resignation and is heading to Holland for an overseas adventure.  We are currently advertising for a replacement teacher of Accounting and Economics.

Once again thank you for your support.  It has been an absolute pleasure and privilege to have been the Acting Principal in this outstanding school of ours

Chris Moller
Acting Principal


The 2006 NCEA results have now been confirmed.  While we are always looking for improvement we are very pleased with the overall effort and results produced by our senior students in 2006.  In the next couple of weeks Year 12 and 13 students will be issued with a summary of their total credits so that they can check this against what they believe they have gained.

The following are some of the academic highlights from our NCEA results in 2006:

•    88% of candidates achieved NCEA Level 1 compared to 74% in 2005. The average Level 1 candidate gained a total of 130 credits.  This was the highest pass rate in Taranaki schools.
•    78% of candidates achieved NCEA Level 2 compared to 77% in 2005. The average Level 2 candidate gained a total of  87 credits.
•    72% of candidates achieved NCEA Level 3 compared to 62% in 2005. The average Level 3 candidate gained a total of  77 credits.
•    93% of Level 1 candidates achieved the literacy standard compared to a national average of 75%
•    96% of Level 1 candidates achieved the numeracy standard compared to a national average of 82%
•    The percentage of Year 13 students obtaining University Entrance increased from 54% in 2005 to 60% in 2006
•    Three students were awarded Scholarships;  Shaun Butler in English, Issac Trevis and Leon Lucas in Geography.

•    No senior student left FDMC in 2006 without a formal qualification compared to a national figure of 18%.
Martin Dravitzki
Deputy Principal (Curriculum)

College Colours


College Colours for Academic excellence were presented at a special assembly on Wednesday 14 March.  The students receiving their colours are pictured:

Back row : Amrit Preet Singh, John Bull, Alex Crossan, Simon Velvin, Scott Murphy, Scott ireland (Guest Speaker and Old Boy of the College), Josh Hickford
Front row : Matthew Easton and Kishan Gunatunga.

Congratulations to all of these boys.

Regarding Subject Choices

Every year we face a number of students who cannot study their chosen subjects at Level 2, and having to choose other subjects, and sometimes other careers, is frequently difficult.

Students often do not seem to understand the importance of working hard in Year 11, their Level 1 NCEA year, and we see them (and their parents) getting a shock when they are due to enter Year 12 and they find that because of their Year 11 results they do not have the basis necessary to continue, or to start, certain subjects at Level 2.  Low achievement in Level 1 certainly affects Level 2 choices.

Some examples are:
•    Level 2 English requires 16 Level 1 credits in achievement standards, with emphasis on text and writing standards.
•    Level 2 Mathematics requires good results in Level 1 and at least achievement in Algebra.
•    Level 2 Chemistry requires merit in Level 1 Chemistry and merit in Level 1 Algebra.
•    Level 2 Physics requires achieved in Level 1 Physics and merit in Level 1 Algebra.
•    Level 2 Biology requires achieved in Level 1 Genetics and achieved in Level 1 Chemistry.
•    Level 2 Electronics requires achieved in Level 1 Algebra and achieved in Level 1 Physics.

There is a limited number of subjects which may be studied without prior knowledge, but these too have prerequisites.  Most subjects require a certain number of passes at level 1 in that subject in order to continue the following year, and these requirements are specified in the option booklet which students receive when they are making subject choices later in the year.  The emphasis is on passing the external standards.

Such requirements have been decided on the basis of HOD experience that those who succeed at the upper level without the necessary basis are extremely rare.  For this reason no student should expect to be made an exception.

Remember that:  A Level 1 unit standards course in English leads to a unit standards course in Level 2 but no further.  Unit standards/applied courses in Mathematics and Science do not lead to any Level 2 courses in those subjects.

Advice regarding subject and career choice is always available from deans and careers staff.
Mrs R. Marris
 Year 12 Dean

NZQA fees

Each student is charged $75 by NZQA for any assessment in 2007.  The college collects this money on behalf of NZQA.  Accordingly all senior students are billed $75.  Financial assistance is available for these fees in some cases where benefits, community services cards or more than one student doing NCEA is involved.  Information and application forms are available at the school office.  If you received financial assistance previously you will need to apply for it again.

The fee of $75 includes three Scholarship subject entries.  Further entry to Scholarship is an extra $75 per subject.  The fees apply to internal and external assessment.

Further information from NZQA at http://www.nzqa.govt.nz/qualifications/ssq/financialassistance.html.  Applications for financial assistance should be made by 31 August.  The college office has copies of the information sheet.

All NZQA fees should be paid by 31 August.  Late payment will incur an extra $50 fee from NZQA.
Graham Blanks
Principal’s Nominee


Youth Environment Forum Essay Competition Winner - Jason Senior (Year 13) was one of three Taranaki students who were winners in this competition run by the Taranaki Regional Council.  He will be representing our region at the annual Sir Peter Blake Youth Environment Forum to be held in Wellington during the first week of the July school holidays.  His prize includes return airfares, accommodation and food throughout the forum.



Cricket.jpgAs the cricket season has finished, I would like to thank all the coaches and managers who gave up their time to help out.  Without their input we would not be able to field so many teams.  Many thanks must also go to the groundsmen for their mowing and marking of the fields, and to Peter Ingram, Mark Wales and the 1st XI for the preparation of the grass wicket.  FDMC has received a lot of positive comments about our fields and wicket.

Thanks also to Alan and Clare Johnston, Peter Fastier and Roger Stachurski for their help in taking three teams to Wanganui for inter-school matches.

Milo Cup (Years 7 & 8) - is a national knock-out tournament, and the FDMC team have won the Taranaki final.  In Term 4 they will play the winner of the Wanganui Region.

Gillette Cup (National Secondary Schools Tournament) - The FDMC 1st XI have won the Taranaki final against New Plymouth Boys’ High and will play Wanganui Collegiate in Term 4.

Congratulations to the following students who have made representative honours:
Under 12    J Scott, L Stevenson, S Pryor
Under 13    R Riccitelli, G J Pike, S Fahy, R Watson, M Blanks, S Sullivan, S Leuthart, S Hitchcock, J Glentworth, C Sole, D Bernet, T Sharre,
Under 14    S Fastier, K Leuthart
Under 15    T Lord, B Wilson, C Novak, S Wells, P Hawkes, Andrew Buhler
Under 17    E Bolstad, C Mawson, R Speirs, A Kelly, N Henderson, S Murphy
Central Districts     Under 15 - P Hawkes - Under 17 - E Bolstad

Hockey – April

The school hockey competitions begin this week and the college has four teams in Taranaki competitions.  The First and Second XIs are in Taranaki A grade (Thursday evenings) and the Third XI (FDMC Red) is in Boys B Grade.  (Wednesday evenings).  We have a Year 7 and 8 team that plays in the North Taranaki intermediate competition on Friday evenings.

Thanks to the coaches Andy Bedford, Richard Smith, Kane Hughes, Ben Schaare and Lee Blanks for putting their time and effort into our teams.  We are looking for another goalkeeper for a high school team.  Is anyone (student) interested?
Graham Blanks
FDMC Hockey


1st & 2nd XV Rugby Tour - Napier & Auckland - 30 March/03 AprilRugby.png
On 30 March the 1st and 2nd XV players and coaches travelled to the sunny Hawkes Bay to take part in a rugby tournament.  We were greeted by Napier Boys’ High School players who were our hosts for two nights. 

The 1st XV game started with a strong forward pack and a young back line who were up against a well-drilled Napier team.  Napier scored early with some excellent support play, and FDMC replied straight away with Caleb Mawson scoring off a good line out move, with Rick McKenna converting.  Rick McKenna finished off a well-weighted chip from Beauden Barrett on the last play.  Rick McKenna slotted a penalty after Cain Ratahi was late tackled, to draw the game 15 all.  Kane Barrett and Liam Coltman had strong games in the forwards, with new-comers Josh Walden and Beauden Barrett performing for the backs.

The team arrived at De La Salle, Mangere, with a few of the boys worried about their billets, but soon realised that South Auckland was not too bad.  The players came back commenting on how well they were fed, with some spending most of the time eating. 

The 1st XV game started off well against the large De La Salle team, with the forwards having a well fought battle.  Liam Coltman was rewarded for an outstanding game with a try, with Rick McKenna adding the extras.  On the last play Jamil Signal broke through De La Salle super defence and put a chip through for Rick McKenna to score in the corner.  Unfortunately Rick was unable to convert his own try.  The final score was 12-13 to De La Salle.  Kane Barrett, Liam Coltman and Todd Curtis had another strong performance for the forwards, while Jamil Signal and Cain Ratahi stood out for the backs.

The 2nd XV played Napier Boys’ High 2nd XV in a tough game - the boys only having had one practise.  They had a good first half, but were not so lucky in the second half.  The final score was 27-11.  The trip continued on to Auckland where the boys had a memorable billeting experience.  They fought a good game against De La Salle, but lack of sleep and lack of practise resulted in a loss 20-8.

This mini-tour of the North Island was enjoyed by all the boys, and was a good opportunity for the coaches to learn a lot about the players they have chosen.

Thanks to everyone who helped and supported the teams, and made this such an enjoyable trip for all those involved.
Liam Richardson (Captain 1st XV)
Ben Abbott (Captain 2nd XV)


Sailors.jpgThe FDMC Sailing Team competed in the NZ National Teams’ Sailing competition held in New Plymouth during the holidays.  The team of Paul Moriarty (Captain/Skipper), Trent Lochhead (Skipper), Jay Gable (Skipper), Brad McCormack (Skipper/Crew), Jordan McCormack (Crew), Oliver Klups (Crew), Louis Grainger (Crew) and George Grainger (Crew) had been training for several months with their coach Dennis Holdt, who was assisted by Simon Holdt.

The boys had beaten NPBHS in two regattas leading up to the National competition, but were beaten in the provincial qualifying round. We gained the host spot, which enabled us to compete.  After 2 days of racing we were the top placed Taranaki team which meant that we were put in the top competition round known as the “Gold Fleet”.  Racing at this level was challenging with New Zealand’s top representative sailors skippering and crewing. We were pleased to finish 9th overall out of a field of 20. This is a great improvement on our 14th placing two years ago.

All of this would not have been possible if it wasn’t for the support of parents and sponsors. Many thanks to the following businesses and individuals who continue to help fund our team:

R.J. Eagars,  Phoenix Shipping,  Dr. Gillian Churchman,  Amtec,  Port Taranaki Limited,  Timberco,  Fitzroy Yachts,  Lone Star Café and Bar,  McDonald Real Estate,  Mercer Stainless Ltd,  Cape Shipping,  House of Travel,  Tasman Marine,  Pak n Save,  Beca,  Total Automation Ltd,  Finishers Touch Ltd  and  Cleggs Furniture Court.


A team of 12 boys represented the College at the Secondary School Swimming Competitions in Stratford on 27 March.  The boys were great competitors and as always were competitive and sportsman like.

Jordan McCormack was the only successful junior swimmer gaining a third in the Junior Boys 100m freestyle. Dylan Dunlop-Barrett won the Intermediate Boys 100 metre freestyle and the 50 metre breaststroke.  Jared Gray gained a 3rd in 50 metre backstroke and 2nd for 50 metre butterfly.  Luke Banks-Novak 2nd Senior butterfly.  Otis Rona 3rd 50 metre backstroke and Nick Lacroix (our Canadian exchange student) gained a 2nd in Senior backstroke and butterfly.

The highlight of the evening came when our Intermediate relay team of Dylan, Jared, Edward Rawles and Drew Whitehead broke the record in both the medley and freestyle relays.  Our junior team of B.J. Monk, Jordan McCormack, Sam Wells and Andrew Trolove were 3rd in the medley relay and 2nd in the freestyle. The senior boys Luke, Nicholas, Otis and Adam Leatham managed 3rd in the medley relay.

Well done to all the competitors.


After an initial postponement due to inclement weather, the TSS Mountainbiking Championships were held at lake Mangamahoe on Sunday 1 April.  In much improved conditions, we had riders contesting, and performing very well, in both the Cross-country and Downhill events.

Results were:   
Senior Boys Downhill    2nd place - Benjamin O’Donnell (Year 11)
Junior Boys Cross-country    1st place - Simon Orr (Year 10)


The TSS Triathlon Championships were held on Sunday 25 March at Ngamotu Beach.  The conditions for the race were ideal – warm with little wind.  We had five boys competing over the course, which included a 250 m swim in the harbour, cycling 10 km and then running approximately one kilometre to the finish.

Placings for the Taranaki Competitors were as follows:

Senior Boys Individual
1st Place    Edward Rawles
3rd Place    Nathan Coombes

Junior Boys Teams
1st Place     Andrew Trolove (swim), Matthew Merwood (bike) and Luke McCallum (run)

Lawn Bowls

The TSS lawn bowls tournament was played on 31 March at the Vogeltown greens.  It is a competition for all Taranaki Secondary School bowlers, who compete in singles or pairs.

Congratulations to:  Max Williams and Nick Coulton - Pairs winners,  Sheehan Gunatunga and David Hills - Second in pairs,  Eugene Judd - Singles winner.  These five players will progress on to represent Taranaki in the regional finals in Wellington.

Also competing and representing FDMC were William Rowland, Michael O’Donnell, Paul Moriarty, Luke Banks-Novak and Scott Corboy

Rotorangi Gutbuster

On Saturday 31 March we had team competing in the Rotorangi Gutbuster.  This is a Multi-sport race held in South Taranaki over a grueling course consisting of a 14 km kayak paddle on Lake Rotorangi followed by a 12 km cross-country run and finishing with a 45 km cycle leg to Hawera.

Our team was Felix Bernet (kayak), Nathan Coombes (run) and Nicholas Lacroix (cycle).  They had a great race, finishing first in the secondary schools division, and being the seventh team overall.


Year 13 Biology Class field trip

The Year 13 Biology class are currently studying the ecological niche of the intertidal shrimp.  The practical investigation is part of an internal NCEA assessment (AS90713).  On Wednesday 28 of March, the students visited the rock pools at Kawaroa and collected data and shrimp to


bring back to the laboratory.  The boys will be conducting various 'fair tests' on the shrimp before returning them to their natural habitat.

Law Mooting

We have entered two teams in this event this year.  This is a very rigorous intellectual challenge and not for the faint-hearted.  Our representatives this year are:

        Lead Counsel - Kishan Gunatunga and David Hills
        Junior Counsel - Chas Carroll and Sheehan Gunatunga
        Researchers - Ben Schaare and Tony Fiddis

Taranaki Literary Challenge

This annual competition is in its second year, and Francis Douglas is again sending a team of Year 9 and 10 students.  Representing the College this year are Tane Clement and Max Prestidge (Year 10 students who competed in last year’s event) and George Grainger, Sam Thomson and Bradley Townsend (Year 9). 

This competition requires students to compete against other schools by answering quiz style questions about ten books published in New Zealand in the last year.  These books are the ten finalists in the young adult fiction and non-fiction categories of the New Zealand Post Book Awards 2007.

The competition has grown in popularity since it began last year, with 12 teams from nine secondary schools competing this year.  In response to this growing interest the organisers have expanded the competition to also include a presentation from author V.M Jones, who wrote one of the books in the young adult fiction category.

The students are competing to win a trophy, a boxed collection of the finalist books for the College library, book vouchers from McCallum’s Paper Plus in Hawera and other spot prizes.  Round one of the competition is held in Hawera on Monday 7 May, with the top two teams competing in the final, also being held in Hawera on Wednesday 16 May.

This year’s team has been working hard in preparation for the competition and we wish them well.
Tina Dalliston

Gala DayGala_1.jpg

A very successful Gala Day was held on Saturday 31 March.  Many thanks to all those who supported the College both by supplying goods for the raffles and stalls, to those who gave their time to help out on stalls, and of course to everyone who came along to buy goods, take rides, eat sausages/cakes/hamburgers, and generally have a good time.  The proceeds from the day were about $29,000.

Raffle winners - The following were the lucky winners of our raffles.
The winners have all been notified and have collected their prizes.

‘Marilyn Monroe” Basket      Marian Richardson
Treasure Map                      I. Moller
Voucher Hamper                 June MacRae
Impala Dinner Voucher        David Churchman
Sports Pack                         Ben Pentelow
Pottery Bowl Hamper           Frank Twiss
Aztec Vase & Accessories      Noelene Major
Girl's Speciality                     Margaret Hancock
Boy's Surprise Pack              Richelle Roylance
Youth Fun Pack                    John Armstrong
Ladies Beauty Basket            Merv Ross
Wine Goblets                        Denise Bridger
Men’s Outdoor BBQ Pack & Chair    John Wills
Gourmet Hamper                 N. McEwen
Burgess House Easter Basket    Trish Wells-Morris
Gardener’s Delight                Marie Masters
Pottery Swirl Bowl Hamper    Ian Humphrey
Groceries    (Draw 1)            Rose Lloyd
                  (Draw 2)            Caroline Spiers
                  (Draw 3)            Cath Mouat
                  (Mobile Trolley)   Jo Bailey

More Gala Day images are shown on the Photo Gallery section of the website.  Click here to see the images.


FDMC Fees - You will have recently received an updated account for 2007 fees.  Also enclosed were tax receipts for donations paid in the last financial year.  Please keep these in a safe place until you are able to file your rebate claim with the Inland Revenue Department.

Westpac Australasian Mathematics Competition - Students are invited to enter this competition which will be held in July.   entries close on Monday 30 April.  If your son is interested he needs to leave his name at the college office with the $6.50 entry fee.  Students were reminded about this last term.  This notice is their final opportunity to make an entry.

Adult Volunteers - If you would be interested in volunteering an hour twice a week to help in our reading programme during Terms 2 and 3, please call Christine Alexander at the College for more information. 

Old Boys Blog - There is now an on-line FDMC Old Boys Blogspot where regular news will be posted and updated by Mr Dravitzki.  Check out www.fdmcoldboys.blogspot.com for news and info of interest to past pupils and staff of the College.  Your feedback on this site is encouraged, and we look forward to hearing from anyone who would like to drop us a line.

Class photographs - Photographs are now available from French Photographics – sample photos are displayed in the College Corridors, and order forms are available at the College Office.  The prices are – 8x10 with names = $11.00 and 6x8 without names = $6.00.  Payment and orders may be handed in to the office.

Urgently wanted - old FDMC rugby jerseys for 11th and 12th grade teams.  Can be dropped off at the office, or given to Mr Coulton.

For Sale - The College has conventional bales of hay for sale at $6.00 GST each - 500 available - phone Mr Paul Drury on 06 753 6149 extn 860.

Waves - Youth Health, Development & Support Service - opened on 23 April to provide support for young people aged 10 to 25.  WAVES is staffed by doctors, nurses and counsellors.  They also offer peer support and youth progammes.   They can provide help for reproductive health issues, pregnancy, health checks, coughs, colds, sore throats, physical health, sports injuries, relationship issues etc. as well as support and education for families.  WAVES will be open for drop in, as well as by appointment from 12 noon to 6pm Monday to Friday.  They are also able to see young people outside of those hours by appointment. 

33 Gover Street, New Plymouth   Ph:  757 9901   Fax: 757 9906   Email:  info@wavestaranaki.org.nz

Term Dates for 2007

Term 2     Monday 23 April to Friday 29 June

Term 3    Monday 16 July to Friday 21 September

Term 4    Monday 8 October to Friday 14 December

2007 Holidays

Queen's Birthday - Monday 4 June

Labour Day - Monday 22 October


College Calendar

April 2007
30-4 May - Year 9 @ Te Wera Camp

May 2007
1    Year 12 Retreat (B&S)
1    Airforce presentation
2    Catholic Schools Day
3    Year 12 Retreat (La & Lo)
4    Waikato University Open Day
4    Taranaki Schools Orchestra Day
4/5/6    O’Shea Shield
7-11    Year 10 at TOPEC
7    Otago Uni Open Day
8    Year 11 Retreat (2 classes)
8/9    Navy visit
9    Junior Deans Assembly
10    6 x Year 13 Students – Humanitarian Law Seminar
10    Year 11 Retreat (2 classes)
15    Captains & Elite Sportsmen Workshop – Danyon Loader
15    Year 11 Retreat (2 classes)
16    Colours Assembly
16    Open Evening @ 6:30pm
17    Electoral Roll visit
17    Year 7 Immunisations
18    College Cross Country
18    TSS Golf
20    TSS BMX
22    Junior Sports Seminar – Sam Warriner
22    Sports Exchange vs St Johns (Hastings) @ Home
22    Victoria Uni Liaison visit
22    Senior M?ѬÅori Career Hui
23    Junior Deans Assembly
23    Games vs St Johns Hastings
23    ICAS Maths (60 students)
24    TSS Cross Country
24    Victoria Uni info evening
25/26/27    Confirmation Camp
27    Eton Senior Maths Competition
30    Senior Deans Assembly
30-1 June – Year 13 Geo Class to Rotorua
30    Police Cross-Country (on farm)

If you would like to have a printable version of the newsletter, please click on the link below.  
Term 2 No 4.pdfTerm 2 No 4.pdf (853.85 KB)