Term 2 - 2007 - No.5

Dear Parents and CaregiversBro_Ollie.gif

The College community extends
its congratulations and prayers to
Brother Oliver O’Leary
who celebrated 75 years as a De La Salle Brother
on 22 May 2007

Cyril O’Leary joined the De La Salle Brothers in 1932 at the age of 18 and was given the religious name, Oliver.  He was the first New Zealand born Brother.  He made his novitiate in Cootamundra, a small town in southern New South Wales.  After completing his novitiate in 1933, Brother Oliver moved to the newly completed De La Salle Training College, Castle Hill, Sydney.  This was to be his home, with a few interruptions, for the next 30 years.  On the property was the Brothers houses of formation, together with a large boarding school and a farm that supplied most of the needs for the boarders and for the Brothers.  As the need arose, Brother Oliver ran the farm and the large vegetable garden, as well as cooking for over 100 Brothers!Br_Ollie_and_Roses.jpg

Brother Oliver had various short stints teaching in schools but for most of his life he has supported the Brothers with his ministry in the Chapel, the kitchen, the garden and the fields.  It was not until 1982 that he finally returned to live and work in New Zealand.  For the past 25 years, Brother Oliver has been a member of the New Plymouth community.

Even at the age of 94, Brother Oliver is still very active, working in some of the gardens around the Brothers’ house and doing some baking for the Brothers’ community.  He shows an active interest in what is happening in the College and his presence at various events is greatly appreciated.

As Brother Oliver celebrates 75 years as a De La Salle Brother, we thank him for his example of fidelity to the Brothers life.  He is a great blessing to the Brothers.  Well done, good and faithful servant.  Ad multos annos!

Special Thanks to Staff
I would like to offer particular thanks to those members of staff who undertook particular tasks while I was on leave:

Mr Chris Moller    Acting Principal
Mrs Margaret Milne    Acting Deputy Principal (Welfare & Management)
Mr Martin Dravitzki    Deputy Principal (Curriculum) with extra responsibilities
Mr Richard Marris    English & Curriculum Co-ordinator with extra responsibilities

I would also like to compliment and congratulate these generous members of staff for the competent and diligent manner in which they undertook these responsibilities.

Br Peter Ryan


As the winter weather starts to set in we invariably see all sorts of uniform discrepancies.  I would like to clarify some issues that are constantly arising with the boys.  The wearing of t-shirts etc underneath the uniform is acceptable as long the garments cannot be seen.  We recommend the wearing of “V neck” short-sleeved T-shirts or “polyprops” or a singlet.  It is hard to hide a rugby jersey underneath the College shirt but you would be surprised how many try.  To help with this the College uniform shop is stocking v necked, short sleeved navy blue polyprops for $25.00. 

The other issue that concerns me is the number of boys wearing sandals right through the winter and also riding scooters while wearing sandals.  As a person who has been involved in a motorcycle accident I would strongly recommend that parents take a firm stance on the wearing of shoes whilst riding the scooters – you only get one pair of feet. 

One problem we are facing with sandals on cold days is boys are wearing socks and sandals.  This is not the school uniform.  All manner of socks are being worn to school and hidden away when the boys arrive.  I am constantly reminding the boys that our public image is very important and the boys presenting themselves in this fashion are letting the College community down.  If your son is feeling the cold please buy him shoes and socks, it is unacceptable for him to wear socks and sandals.

I would like to remind people of the shoes that are acceptable to wear to College.  We prefer the traditional style of shoe, however the regulations state that shoes must be black polished leather with black laces.  Please check the “Handbook” section of the student diary under ”Uniform and Grooming”.
Chris Moller
Deputy Principal (Welfare & Management)


Congratulations to Andrew Buhler who was selected for the Taranaki Under 15 Cricket team. 

Congratulations to the following boys who have been accepted into Year 1 of the NZ Academy of Sport regional talent development programme – Nathan Coombes, Thomas Ingram, Finlay Neeson and Dylan Dunlop-Barrett.

Quest Awards
Congratulations to Jacob Klenner of Year 8 who received a Dean’s Award for Diligence during May.
Congratulations to Cavaan Wild of Year 7 who received a Dean’s Award for Attainment during May.


Terms 1 and 2 have been a really busy time in the music department.  At the moment we are busy celebrating New Zealand music aP1010027.jpgs May is New Zealand Music Month.  Throughout the month boys have had a large number of extra music making activities to take part in, from an Air Guitar competition, screenings of music related presentations from www.ted.com, lunchtime keyboard access for Year 7 boys, invitations to come and learn to play a tune on the guitar, to singing up showing interest in joining a band and wanting help getting started, and a competition to find the two most musical boys and win a Music Month t-shirt.

On 3 April we were invited to attend the first New Plymouth Schools Singer Songwriter evening, to be a termly event, the venue was New Plymouth Girls’ High School and it was a fantastic evening, arrange by the New Plymouth Singer Songwriters, with a workshop presented by accomplished local musicians, followed by their performances and student performances, the classroom and stage was transformed into a candle lit, dramatic stage.  Our Year 11 and 12 musicians are currently working on some new material that they can perform at the next Schools’ Singer Songwriters’ evening.

The Junior Choir continue to be a flagship ensemble of our music department and have already performed to a very high standard at the College Open Evening on 16 May.  This was a great preparation for their entry into the National Kids Sing competition (part of the Big Sing competition).  The Taranaki competition will be held in the evening of 5 June and all boys, both Junior and Senior, who are interested in singing, and in seeing the standards we are aiming for, are warmly invited to attend from 7pm at the Assembly of God Church off Poplar Grove.
House singing rehearsals are well under way and each of the four houses promises to produce something exciting and of quality.  This event is definitely a musical highlight in the boys’ year and goes from strength to strength.

The Contemporary Combo sound so good these days that they have entered the Manawatu Jazz Festival.  They will be competing at the Globe Theatre in Palmerston North on Saturday 2 June before attending a Frank Sinatra tribute concert on Saturday evening and taking part in a selection of jazz workshops on Sunday 3 June.  This is fantastic achievement by the Combo, led by Robin Wellaway, that they are now of a standard to compete on a National stage.

Our 17 members of Fusion took part in the Taranaki Schools’ Orchestra Day on Friday 4 May.  Conducted by renowned musicians and musical director Mr Harry Brown the boys joined over 100 fellow music students to rehearse together for an afternoon concert of music ranging from the James Bond theme to Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons”.  The day was a fantastic experience for all involved and we very much hope that next year’s event will result in a larger scale evening concert.  Many of our boys have since been invited to play for the TaranakiP1010152.jpg Youth Orchestra.

We are again in the running for success in the National Rockquest competition.  Six entries from FDMC school bands have been sent off to Rockquest.  The Taranaki heats will be held early in Term 3 (date is t.b.c.) with the Taranaki Rockquest finals on Friday 17 August at the TSB Showplace.  We wish all the bands the best of luck with their performances.

Chamber Music New Zealand are fantastic supporters of our young musicians and provide students with hugely reduced priced tickets to their concerts.  It has been great that so many of our boys have become regulars in our third row seats and have already seen the energy and felt the intensity of performances by the Australian String Quartet, the New Zealand Trio and Michael Houston.  The next CMNZ concert is not until early August but this promises to be an exceptional performance by the New Zealand String quartet and Marimba player Pedro Carneiro.P1010118.jpg

Some of our boys and staff are playing significant parts in the New Plymouth Operatic Society’s production of Cats.  This is one of my favourite musicals and I am very much looking forward to the performances between 15 and 30 June.

Instrument lessons are flourishing.  We have a waiting list for drum and bass guitar lessons.  I would very much like to support, financially, boys who would like to learn one of the following instruments – violin, cello, flute, clarinet, trumpet, trombone, bassoon and oboe.  Please so see me if you are interested in learning a new instrument.
Ms Jo Suren - TiC Music



The annual appeal went brilliantly.  We had a target of $2000 and this was exceeded by over 60%, the final total being $3262.40.  The generosity of the boys was wonderful and reflects what a truly Lasallian school FDMC is.  There were notable contributions from some boys who donated their pay from work shifts, who matched dollar for dollar with the rest of their Vertical Forms, or even took money from their savings accounts.  The winning Vertical Form was Loreto 6 who raised $364, an average of over $14 per student.  The winning house was Solomon who contributed over $1000.  What great efforts from everyone and may God bless them for their generosity.


This term we focus on two distinctive campaigns.  Vertical Forms have started planning and implementing their plans for raising $300 to enable the individual child they sponsor in Sri Lanka or India to attend school.  Ask your son about the child his form is sponsoring as each form gets letters and drawings from these children as a statement of thanks for the support that enables them to get an education.

The annual statement of support for the New Plymouth Foodbank will take place in the two weeks before Queen's Birthday weekend.  Last year the response was very big and certainly increased the mana of FDMC in the Taranaki community.  Once again the Vertical Form shield will be up for grabs.



On Monday 7 May, Sam Easton, Matthew van den Tillaart, Tom Siffleet, Tim Apps and Nic Stachurski collected data on the biomass of trees in the lower montane forest and montane forest.  The data will be forwarded to the Department of Conservation.  The boys learnt about the geological history of the mountain and more recent events involving conservation. The visit was completed with a walk through the goblin forest at the visitors' centre at North Egmont.


Some exciting workshops have been taking place:
•    Mathematics Problem Solving for Years 8, 9 and 10
•    Data collecting for DOC on Mt Egmont
•    The Philosophy Club begins this week.
•    Boys have attended Sports Seminars as Ambassadors for the college.
•    The Law Mooting was held at The Devon and was even harder than in the past so well done to the Year 12 and 13 students who took part.     Congratulations to our team who have qualified for the Semi-Final to be held at the District Court in Hamilton on 30 May; David Hills (Lead Counsel), Shehan Gunatunga (Junior Counsel) and Tony Fiddis (Researcher).
•    Matthew Easton will represent us at The NZ Business Week.  He has been sponsored by Rotary, and will meet with business leaders and gain mentoring for the future.
•    Three Year 12 boys attended the Leaders Forum in Stratford.
•    Six Year 9 boys listened to Des Hunt [author of Frog Whistle Mine] at Puke Ariki.


Students in Year 13 visited 4 locations along the North Taranaki Coast on 14 May.  We observed the different landforms at Back Beach, Paritutu, Fitzroy and Urenui Bay.  Natural geographic processes include wave refraction, sand movement, erosion and human changes to the coastal environment.  The fieldwork forms the basis of a NCEA research assignment, which the 35 students are currently completing.

The Rotorua Tourism field trip is planned for 11–13th June where we will learn about the economic geography of the Rotorua area in preparation for the end of year NCEA examinations.


2007 Fonterra Taranaki Science & Technology Fair – will be held on 30 July to 1 August at Pukekura Raceway Tuson Stand.  The two levels of entry are years 9-10 and years 11-13.  The sections are:  Scientific Investigation, Technological Development, Photography (the theme is “Energy”), Observational Drawing (the theme is “A Support Structure”), Journalism (the topic is “Is New Zealand’s Clean Green image fact or fiction?”), Advertising Poster (Years 9-10 only).

Entry forms must be handed in by Wednesday 20 June, along with the Posters, photos, Drawings and Journal articles, so there is plenty of time for students to be organised.  Scientific investigations and Technological Developments are to be handed in on the first day of Term 3, so students have the holidays to complete these displays.   The exhibits are open for public viewing on Wednesday 1 August from 9:00am to 5:00 pm, then all displays must be removed between 6:45pm and 7:00pm.  The prizegiving is held from 7:00pm to 8:00pm. 

Your son’s science teacher is his first point of contact for the Fair.  Any additional queries may be directed to Mrs Jeanne Marshall at the College.

Year 7 & 8 Science News
At the moment all year 7 & 8 students are working on their Science Fair Investigation and students are reminded that they are due in Week 8 Term 2.  The students are working on a wide range of ideas, testing products, creating new technology or Scientific Journalism.  It is hoped parents are able to give minimal guidance and lots of encouragement.

During Term 3 the Year 8 Science students will be building a steam car to keep, and I would remind students to return the permission form and payment to the office as soon as possible.

Taranaki Literary Challenge

Our team of five students did very well at this year's Literary Challenge.  Competing against twelve other teams, they were holding a respectable second position after three rounds.  Unfortunately by the end of round five we were not in the top three that would progress to the finals.  Our students were happy to each receive a bag of gifts from New Zealand Post for competing, and feel very prepared for next year's competition where they hope to improve again on this most recent performance.  Well done to Tane Clement, Max Prestidge, Sam Thomson, George Grainger and Bradley Townsend.


Army work experience 2007 - Linton Military Camp 24 - 28 September 2007 - Years 12 & 13 students interested in the Army as a career option. This will include leadership, team-building and personal development aspects, with a focus on hands-on participation in selected trade areas.  There will also be physical training and adventurous activities.  See Ms Land for further details.

Taranaki Careers Website On-line Survey - Education Taranaki would like anyone over 15 to complete their online survey @ www.taranakicareers.co.nz. which is accessible at the bottom left corner of the website homepage during May. The site provides up to date information on local career opportunities with particular focus on areas of skill shortages within Taranaki.  It also includes a comprehensive list of local scholarships and links to other important information.

Aotearoa "Youth Voices" – The Provoke Network – The Ministry of Youth Development invites students to sign up to be youth voice advocates as part of their Provoke Network project.  The Provoke Network is a national project that aims to get young people (aged 13-24) involved in government decision making.  The Provoke Network will offer you: the space to network with other young people, a monthly electronic newsletter, training youth voice advocates in youth participation in decision making, the opportunity to find out what government is doing, and an online discussion forum for youth voice advocates.  For further information, contact the Ministry of Youth Development on youthvoices@myd.govt.nz or visit their website, www.youthvoices.govt.nz.

Student Allowances - students over 18 may be eligible for a student allowance while at school.  Please contact Studylink to check eligibility on Phone 0508 885 885 or check their website www.studylink.govt.nz.

University of Canterbury – Information Days – 3-4 July - This is an opportunity to find out more about UC and their courses. This two day event will include a programme of introductory lectures in various subjects, campus tours, and tours of the libraries, Recreation Centre and Halls of Residence. Out of town students can stay in the Halls of Residence for a real student experience.  The programme will be available on the website, or email liaison@canterbury.ac.nz with your contact details and they will post a hard copy out to you.  Check out the website www.canterbury.ac.nz/liaison/eventsdiary.shtml#liaison_events for further information on this and other events



Rugby___Under_15_team.JPGOur Under 15 Rugby team are pictured enjoying the sunshine after their first competition win for the year – 28-7 against Coastal.  Well done boy – looking forward to many more games along those lines. 

Families and supporters of our college sports teams are encouraged to come along and experience the great atmosphere on Saturday mornings.

Soccer___Corey___Joshua.jpgFDMC Gold 13th Grade Team played Highlands Phoenix and we won 10-0.  The team played with growing confidence and passed the ball about with accuracy and skill.

In the photo Joshua McNight has just passed the ball to Corey Floyd and went on to score a great goal.

Wet_field___P1040001_copy.jpgSports Exchange – FDMC and St John’s College, Hastings – Wednesday 23 MayRugby___P1040023_copy.jpg
Undeterred by torrential rain early in the day, our Home Teams and the Visitors kicked off their games of rugby, basketball, soccer and “Under-water Hockey”.  The results may have reflected our Hastings visitors’ unfamiliarity with good Taranaki weather, as well as the great playing of our boys.

Rugby Basketball___P1030891_copy.jpg
1st XV – 56-0 to FDMC – tries by Sam Connolly (3), Jamil Signal (2), Kane Barrett, Rick McKenna, Caleb Mawson and Ethan Bolstad – 1 penalty and 5 conversions by Rick McKenna
2nd XV – 36-5 to FDMC – tries by Daniel Malili, Tim Hills, Bailey Walsh, Thys Van der Poel and Jackson Carrington (2) – 3 conversions by Thys Van der Poel

Soccer___P1040013_copy.jpgSoccer – 1st XI – 2-0 to FDMC (own goal, Andrew Crowe)

Hockey – 1st XI – 10-0 to FDMC – Ben Schaare 4, Nick Dravitzki 2, Jack Blanks, Bryn Gibson, Alex Sullivan-Brown, Finn Callaghan)

Basketball – 1st – 72-43 to FDMC – Points scorers were Nick Siffleet 21, Kale Joines 15/12 rebounds, Tom Ingram 10 points/10 rebounds.


The annual Cross-country race was run on Friday 18 May.  The winners on the day were:

         Year 7            Year 8        Junior                           Int A          Int  B              Senior
1st     D Mosquera    D Morris     C McSweeney-Novak    B Barrett    L Molyneaux    N Coombes
2nd    A Huesser     J Smith       J Hareb                        E Rawles     J Finnerty        A Bridgeman
3rd    C Paterson     A Burkett    J Fletcher                     J Gray        J Gopperth       A Huesser

House Points were:
Benildus    1843
La Salle    1741
Solomon    1664
Loreto    1498

Vertical form winners were:
S5    399 points
B7    346 points
B8    341 points

More images of the Cross Country are available - click here to go to the photo library.



Polyprop/thermals:  Boys may wear a polyprop/thermal top under the blue school shirt as long as it does not show.  The Uniform Shop is trialling the sale of polyprop tops depending on demand.  We have available a navy short sleeve V neck top in sizes XS - XL. These are good quality NZ made garments at a cost of $25.00 each.  Payment and orders can be left at the office.

Sports/Coaches Jackets – The Uniform Shop has a number of sports jackets for sale to any interested parents or FDMC supporters.  These are warm, fleece-lined navy jackets embroidered with the FDMC monogram.  After issue to the top sports teams and coaching staff, we are left with medium to 2XL sizes only – and they are a large-fitting garment.  We offer these for sale at $85 each on a first-in, first-served cash only basis.  If interested, please visit the Uniform Shop during opening hours (12:45 to 1:30pm) or call Karen Gray mornings at the College Office.

Team up with your teen for FREE! -Secondary_booklet_cover.jpg

Help is at hand for parents of teenagers from Team-Up.  The new FREE Team-Up Secondary booklet for parents is a helpful 56-page booklet to read, use, keep and share during your teen’s secondary school years.  Covering all the topics parents are likely to be thinking about, the Secondary booklet is packed full of tips, activities and information to help parents play an even bigger part in their teenager’s learning.  Along with an interview with Tana about the challenges of being a parent, some of the topics for parents featured in the 56-page colour booklet include: NCEA, hanging in there through the teenage years, choosing subjects for their future, what do employers look for, bullying, homework. 

To find out more and to request a FREE booklet visit the Team-Up website: www.teamup.co.nz/requestbooklet or call Team-Up on 0800TEAMUP (0800 832 687).  Other FREE Team-Up booklets for parents include the Primary/Intermediate booklet and Early Childhood booklet.


Firstly, thanks to the Poppelwell family for their donation of chess boards for the “FDMC Bishops chess team” as part of the preparation for next months TSS champs.

Secondly, thanks to the Whitham family, who have kindly donated a large Ancient Swamp Kauri slab to the school.  When finished, the slab will be on display in the Design & Technology Block.  Radio carbon dating of timber from the slab’s origin have been dated between 20-30 thousand years.  Smaller pieces have been turned by Mr Tony Susans as a mascot and as trophies for the school chess team.

College Calendar

Term Dates for 2007
Term 1    Wednesday 7 February to Thursday 5 April
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

June 2007

1    Founder’s Day
4    Queen’s Birthday (Holiday)
5-8    Yr 12 TOPEC – Caving
5    Year 8 Retreat (La & Lo)
7    Year 8 Retreat (B&S)
10    TSS Duathlon
12    Canterbury Uni liaison – Pd 4
13    Senior Deans Assembly
13/14/15 – Year 12 Geo trip to Auckland
14    New Plymouth Attitude Seminars – Life Skills presentations
15    Otago University – Liaison visit – Pd 2
19    Period 4 - NZ Broadcasting School
19-20    St Bernards Sports Exchange - TBC
20    Junior Deans Assembly
21    Otago University Law Seminar in NP 1:00pm to 3pm
21    World Youth Day Pilgrimage
24    TSS Squash
25    Year 10B Retreat
26    Year 10G Retreat
27    Year 10R Retreat
27    Senior Deans Assembly
28    Year 10S Retreat
29    Year 10W Retreat

29    End of Term 2

July 2007

30 June to 3 July - Model United Nations in Wellington