Tuesday, 9 December 2008

2008 Leavers

The school year is finally completed for our Year 13s, who attended the Leaver's Mass in the Chapel at the school this evening.
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Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Uniform Shop

The PTA uniform shop will be open on:

Saturday 17th January 2009 from 10.30am to 1.30pm

Wednesday 28th January 2009 from 9.30am to 12 noon

Staff Changes for 2009

Leaving the College         
Robert and Margaret Tait will be retiring.
Sue Maynard has been promoted to AP at St Theresa’s Bluff.
Sue Shaw     

Joining the College         
Keryn Page – Teacher of Middle School 
Karen Hammond– Home Economics 
Megan Van –English and Japanese         
Joyce Campbell – Assistant to the HOLA English   

Internal changes         
Kathryn Miles – DRS and Year 12 Dean          
Richard Haveron – Year 11 Dean   
Colin Kidd- Grounds person  

Otatara Community Nursery

8KM have been helping to plant trays of tussocks at the Otatara Community Nursery. The tussocks will be replanted as part of the College landscaping plan when they are large enough.  Leone Grace has coordinated this environmental action project with Chris Rance who runs the nursery. The class planted over 300 plants which was an excellent effort. Department of Conservation ranger Teresa Jackson helped the students explore the local wetland walk. Thank you to everyone who helped make the day possible.

Pacifika Cultural Evening

Sounds of the Pacific filled the College hall on our first Pacifika Evening. Strong beats, rich harmonies and flowing dances from talented and enthusiastic performers were highlights of the evening. An appreciative audience were given a taste of the many Pacific cultural traditions with in our College. Thank you to the  dedicated team who organised the evening. $770 was raised and donated to the College.    

SIT Careers Day

All year 10 students have had the opportunity to explore careers and courses through SIT at the annual taster day. Thanks to SIT and Mrs More for making the day possible.  

Head Students for 2009

Congratulations to next year’s head students. 
Head Girl                           Antoinette Oudhoff 
Head Boy                           Ben Ward 
Deputy Head Girl             Kayla Geary 
Deputy Head Boy            Matthew Debono

Ben Ward and Kayla Geary with their peer support group on the new entrant orientation day held today. The fine weather gave an excellent opportunity for students to get to know each other and the senior students. 

Director of Religious Studies

The Board of Trustees is pleased to announce the appointment of Mrs Miles as DRS commencing in 2009. Mrs Miles is  currently Year 12 Dean and teacher of senior religious education at the College.  Mrs Miles brings a wealth of teaching experience in history and religious education to the position. Mr Tait, currently DRS, has kindly deferred his retirement and will be close at hand to assure a smooth  transition during the first terms.

Senior Prizegiving

Congratulations to the students who received awards at the senior prizegiving.

The Young Entrepreneur
Lauren Morsink

Theology Distance Education Paper
The following sat and passed the University of Otago Theology paper – CHTX 101 Early Christianity
Rebecca Abey,  Lauren Morsink
Zac Vermeulen,  Hannah Morrison
Amy Radka,   Nicole MacaballugCoby Dowling,  Simon Gourley
Louise Moodie,  Renata Davis

Year 13 Verdon Citizenship
The Golden Family Trophy -In the Way of Dominic, Rosamund More

Year 13 Outstanding Courtesy and Cooperation
The Sunrise Rotary Club Award,  Danielle Thomas

Head Boy’s Award -The Craig & Shaun Campbell Cup Renata Davis
Head Girl’s Award -Deirdre Lynch Cup Katherine Affleck

The Founders’ Award
Alice McDowell

Proxime Accessit 2008  
Alice McDowell
Verdon College Dux 2008
Nicole Macaballug 

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Borland Lodge Trip

The information sheet for the Borland Lodge EOTC Trip for Year 10 is now available. Please take the time to read this to ensure your child has an enjoyable and safe experience.

The Year 10 EOTC Programme runs from Monday 24 November through to Thursday 27 November.

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Australian (ICAS) English and Spelling Competitions.

Congratulations to the following students who have received awards
Henry More- participation English and Spelling
Brydon Harrington- participation Spelling
Tara Woodd- participation Spelling
Brenna O'Neill- participation English
Jasmine Barnfather - participation English
Christine Lieshout - participation English
Tegan Goodall - participation English
Bronwen Hughes- participation English
Nat O'Neill- participation Spelling, credit English
Dermot Hughes- credit English and Spelling
Sarah Hughes- credit English and Spelling
Padriac O'Neill - credit English
Michael Kelly - credit English
Caitlin Wallace- credit English
Jack Kelly - credit English
Patrick Stone - credit English
Hannah Grindlay - distinction English
Ella Prendergast - distinction English, credit Spelling
Meg Prendergast- distinction English
Thank you to the English Department staff who co-ordinated this assessment.

Otatara Community Nursery

Last week 8KM helped to plant trays of tussocks at the Otatara Community Nursery. The tussocks will be replanted as part of the College landscaping plan when they are large enough. Leone Grace has coordinated this environmental action project with Chris Rance who runs the nursery. The class planted over 300 plants which was an excellent effort. Department of Conservation ranger Teresa Jackson helped the students explore the local wetland walk. Thank you to everyone who helped make the day possible.

Young Enterprise Results

Congratulations to team “Keep It Pumpin” comprising Amy Radka, Coby Dowling, Hannah Morrison, Katherine Affleck, Lauren Morsink, Louise Moodie and William Hewitt and team “Markit” comprising Ben Garrett, Catherine Butt, Courtney Harris-Fletcher, Emma Greenfield, Kaylee Fannin, Mike Chamberlain, Olivia Gorton and Thomas Edwards who all passed the recent examination.

Jazz Fest - 2009

Congratulations to the Verdon Swingers who were placed second in the annual Southland Secondary Schools Jazz Festival.
Special mention goes to:
Ben Cochrane – best Sax Player and
Jamie Macdonald – best Bass Player.
As usual there was wonderful support group from Verdon Teachers, pupils, family and ex-pupils.
Our special thanks to Alistair Monteath, brass itinerant, who organises the whole event. It is a real credit to him.

SMAC Maths

Congratulations to all our teams who entered the SMAC Maths competition on Wednesday evening. We entered seven teams across Year 7 to Year 10 and all of them scored some impressive totals. Special congratulations to the Year 9 team of Liam Cosgrove, Oliver Fry, James Shirley and Ben Williams who came third.


We proudly congratulate the following students on gaining scholarships.

ILT Tertiary Scholarships:
Ben Cochrane, Simon Gourley
William Hewitt, Courtney Jones
Nicole Macaballug, Jamie Macdonald
Alice McDowell, Louise Moodie
Rosamund More, Amy Radka
and Zachary Vermeulen.

Southland community Trust Scholarships:
Lauren Morsink
Alice McDowell
and Renata Davis

Year 8 Camps

During the first weeks of term four, the year 8 classes went to Deep Cove for their camp.

The activities included tramping, marine studies, the confidence course and learning about the geography and history of the area.

Vietnam Tour 2008

A group of 42 troops consisting of 27 students split up into the four mythical icons of Vietnam: Dragons, Tortoises, Unicorns and Phoenixes, just recently returned from a two week long stint in Vietnam. We arrived in the extreme heat and even more extreme traffic of Saigon and spent a few hours exploring the area. The culture shock and the smell was instant but we got over this quickly and soon returned back to base Vien Dong with around 10 DVDs each.
Next day we had an early flight to Hanoi where our first stop was a war museum then onto Maison Centrale AKA The Hanoi Hilton-A prison where the French held the Vietnamese political prisoners. Later that day was one of the highlights of the trip when we each individually took rides on bicycle carts (called Cyclos) around the city for an hour.

The most amazing experience on the trip had to be spending the night on two boats in Halong Bay in the middle of the Indo-China Sea this also included a trip to the Surprise caves on an island in the middle of the sea. We spent the night buying real pearl jewellery and singing Karaoke on the Junk (Vietnamese boat). We also had the chance to taste the Vietnamese cuisine of seafood consisting of shrimp, clams, prawns, squid and for those allergic to seafood duck eggs!

Next we travelled south to central Vietnam and visited Khe Sanh and experienced what life was like for the Americans during the war. Then on to Da Nang where we visited a school with 7000 students. The dragons introduced the locals to a bit of New Zealand culture, and entertained the students with a Haka.
From here we marched on to one of the most exciting little towns we have ever experienced, Hoi An. Hoi An consists of at least 400 tailors and dress makers, which the whole tour party definitely took advantage of. By the end of the second day everyone was sporting fancy tailor-made suits and dresses, and the odd pair of shoes or four. The Pho Hoi resort included a luxurious pool that was the perfect finish for a busy day of commuting around the busy streets, listening to "scoose me, you come look in my shop, please buy something".

We returned to Ho Chi Minh city, formerly known as Saigon, for the last leg of our trip. Here we enjoyed the markets and several of us came back with North Face jackets for $40 with a RRP of $400 in New Zealand. We made a day trip to the Cu Chi tunnels where the Dragons fulfilled a life long ambition, firing an AK47. The noise was amazing!

All in all a well enjoyed trip, and a great first taster of Asian culture. Our tour leader Gen. Wes Melvin kept us all in formation and made sure we all came back in one piece. Thanks to Mr Melvin for his co-ordination and to everyone who supported us in our fundraising, we had the trip of a life time!
Sin Chow, Vietnam Tour 08 Team.

New Caledonia Experience

On the last day of term three a group of 13 students and two teachers left Invercargill for an exciting fortnight in New Caledonia.

After very little sleep in Auckland overnight, we arrived at Tontouta airport at noon, tired and perhaps a little disappointed that the weather was overcast and a bit drizzly. But once the doors were opened, we certainly felt the heat. And that was the only day it rained. As the days went by, the temperatures rose, and even at 7.00am and 10.00pm, it was 22 degrees or more. Because not all our hotel rooms were ready on our arrival, we had a tour of the city’s highlights courtesy of the little yellow train.
One big difference we immediately noticed was the driving on the right side of the road, and it took some of us a long time to adjust to looking in the other direction before we crossed the road.

On Sunday we took another tour of the city by bus. We had all-day passes, so we could hop on and off as we pleased. The kids all hopped off at McDonald’s because they could get McFlurry there, and then hopped back on again when it came back an hour and a half later.

Monday was an early start as we were supposed to be at the school at 7.00am to meet host children and find out classes, etc. It must have been a funny sight to see the procession of people lugging suitcases alon g the street at that time and it was hot already, so we were in a right state by the time we got there a bit after the right time.

School starts every day at 7.30am and goes through till 5.00pm, but some students do have non-contact time during the day. However, they are supervised in study periods by non-teaching staff. Wednesday is a half day, and students finish at 11.30 at the latest. Lunch is eaten in the canteen. Students pay a nominal amount for a hot meal, the quality of which is variable. However, it was a good experience. Twice we ate there, and the other days we were given a packed lunch - a sandwich made of half a baguette with ham and lettuce, a piece of fruit and a bottle of water.

The students at the school were really polite and well-behaved and eager to learn. Classrooms are not as well resourced as here, but the level of English spoken by these youngsters was surprisingly high for the age that they were. English is heard all around them – songs on the radio, TV programmes, tourists – so they can see the value of it.

Each afternoon after lunch we did various activities and then returned to the school by 5.00pm for the students to go home with their homestays. We did this for the first week and then the next two days. These activities included beach visits, a tour of the supermarket to see the variety of goods available, the aquarium, museums to understand the history and culture of the city of Noumea and of New Caledonia.

Below we have a picture of a chief’s hut at the Tjibaou Cultural Centre where the history of the native people of New Caledonia is told. On the right is part of this building – there are eight of these huge structures, representing the tribes of the Kanaks. Then we see some of us eating lunch at a beach on one of the many fine days we had.

The tricot raye snake is common on the island of the Amedee Lightouse, which has 229 steps to reach the top. Paigan volunteered to climb a coconut tree following the demonstration of how to do so. St Joseph’s Cathedral was built using prison labour.

Fortunately, the only ray we saw was this one in the aquarium. Bronwen and Rowena got their photo taken with the musical group who entertained us over
lunch on the Amedee Lighthouse island. Many of the group had tried the island dancing which was also part of that entertainment. Ryan is seen placing a poppy and the Southland Spirit of a Nation pennant on the grave of a Southland soldier who lost his life in World War 2 and who is buried at Bourail, where a large contingent of 2500 men was stationed at a training base there. New Zealanders are very well respected in this town because of the contribution they made to it during that time.

Finally we have the whole group of Verdon and St Joseph de Cluny students in front of their school gate. We are very appreciative of what the school did for us and for the tremendous generosity of the families with whom we stayed. It was truly a remarkable experience, and we hope to be able to continue the contact and friendships that we have made.
We would like to thank the Board of Trustees and staff for their encouragement and support. We were certainly the winners – the school and the students.

The families could not do enough for us, and some students came home with generous gifts from their families. Many became good friends with their host brothers / sisters, and this correspondence will no doubt continue. The improvement in knowledge and understanding of the French language varied amongst the students, but everyone certainly gained an insight into a different way of life and an appreciation of home. Thanks you. Mrs Marshall.

Verdon Community Planting Day

The holiday and early term Saturday working bees have been a huge success. Many thanks to the students and friends of the College who contributed time, skill and money for purchasing the plants. A special thank you to Colin Telfer Ditch and Drainage -03 218 7040 for the use of his digger and Michael Tither from Plants Direct -027 736 9464. www.plantsdirect.co.nz is Michael’s website. He supplies top quality plants at extremely low prices. We ask you to support both of these businesses. Please call the College office if you would like to donate a plant to the project.

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

New Newsletter Format

We look forward to our new format which will start in term four.
Visit the website and click on subscribe to newsletter email and follow the instructions if you would like to have your copy sent to you.


· Lucy Heenan has been selected for the NZ Under 16 Basketball squad travelling to Australia at Christmas.
· Luke Adamson joins the Southland Primary School Hockey Team travelling to Wellington these holidays.
· Rebecca Smith won 11 medals, 8 silver and 3 bronze, at the South Island Swimming Championships.
· Grace Dowling, Jessica Wright, Brydon Harrington and Monique Kerr - Verdon Gold – were placed 2nd in the Medley and 3rd in the Freestyle at the Southland Schools Swimming Relay Championship.

Year 7 Camps

Miss Potter and Mr McRandle enjoyed fine weather for their class camps in Dunedin. The student’s enjoyed the mixture of outdoor education challenges and visits to the Dunedin icons like the Cadbury Factory and the Otago Museum. Thank you to the staff and parent helpers who made the camp so enjoyable.

Sharing Champagnat's Vision

At the end of term three, Mr Miles and Mr Olsen were guests of the Marist Brothers at Adelaide’s Passionist Monastery. Twenty Australian and NZ teachers were invited to learn about their founder, St Marcellin Champagnat and the Marist unique teaching philosophy. The Marist charisms are reflected in our Verdon V8 values.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Tournament Week

Three teams were involved in the 2008 Winter Tournament Week in early September. The Verdon College 1st XI Hockey Team travelled to Greymouth to compete in the Coaches Cup, they came 5th out of fifteen teams, a big improvement from lasts years result of 10th, Grant Miles, Deputy Principal managed the team, and he found it very committed to match play as well as off the turf activites and fully deserved their success.
The Soccer boys won and lost some tough games at Sandy Point and O'Rouke Park in Invercargill. Verdon College 1st XI had a large goal scoring margin in many of the games, which indicated how well they were playing. Verdon was placed 9th overall. "This team was young and enthusiastic, there is a bright future ahead for Verdon Soccer, congratulations on your effort" – Coaches Ross Buxton & John Jones.

Robyn Broughton and the Senior A Netball Team competed in the South Island Secondary Schools Tournament in Dunedin. There were 76 teams competing. The Senior A Team plays in the “A” Grade, the team came 6th overall, missing a place in the top four by a close one-goal loss to St Kevins College. Considering the youth of the team, and wins over much larger schools, it looks good for the future of the Senior A Team.
The school would like to congradulate and thank all of those involved in the 2008 tournament week.
Looking forward to 2009...

Monday, 8 September 2008

Alice McDowell wins Dan Davin Award

Budding writer Alice McDowell won the Dan Davin Award for short stories at a ceremony at the Community Trust of Southland last night.
The Verdon College pupil won the award with her entry entitled Perspectives. Dan Davin Literary Foundation co-ordinator Rebecca Amundsen said the contest, organised to celebrate the contributions of Southland's best-known writer Dan Davin, was the highlight of the year for the foundation. The short story award for school-aged aspiring writers has run since 1995, with this years theme "impressions".
1st place:Alice McDowell, Verdon College, Perspectives.
3rd place: Ben Cochrane, Verdon College, A Second Chance.
Highly commended: Courtney Jones, Verdon, Along Came a Spider and Sat Down Beside Her. Shaentaella Watson, Verdon, Under the Bed. Caitlin Donnelly, Verdon, Impressions.

Friday, 5 September 2008

Saturday Netball

Of the many teams that played in the weekly competition this year, eight made semi-finals, and three made it to the finals. Year 8 Silver and Year 12 Social were runners-up, and the Year 13 Social team won its grade. Thank you to Mrs Marshall and her team of coaches and managers for their hard work and dedication through out the season.

Library Launch

At assembly this week we launched our new Learning Resource Centre. Mrs Taylor encouraged students to make full use of the area and set out some of the expectations around its use. It is made up of the book resource room , the computer research and reading area in the atrium and the room 41 classroom. Mrs Taylor is currently recruiting student librarians to help fellow students in this large learning space.

Clean Up New Zealand Week

Year 7 Science classes did their bit for our local environment this week as they collected rubbish on a walk around the block for Clean Up New Zealand Week. Pictured are 7MJ with their collection from the Otepuni Stream banks.

Farewell Mr Buxton

Mr Ross Buxton, who has been a valued staff member for 14 years was given a farewell at assembly this week. He is leaving in two weeks to take up a position with his wife in Abu Dhabi. During his time at the College, he has been a Religious Education teacher and role model, Marian House leader, computer specialist and a retreat and outdoor eduction organiser. Our prayers are with them as they embark on this exciting teaching opportunity.

Thursday, 28 August 2008

Ski Trip

Thank you to the parents and teachers who helped make the Sunday Ski Trip to the Remarkables an outstanding success. Over 60 students took the opportunity to ski or board in excellent conditions. A number of tired bodies marked a great trip.

World Youth Day

Our guest speaker at Wednesday’s assembly was Fr Martin. He shared with the College his journey to World Youth Day 2008 in Sydney. The Dunedin Diocese had a strong presence at this inspirational event and Fr Martin’s presentation of pictures and reflections brought it to life. It is our hope that some of our student’s will be motivated to attend the next gathering in three years.

Monday, 25 August 2008

Creative Southland Speech Contest

Congratulations to Henry More and Alannah Webster- Blair who were our top two placegetters in the first round of the Creative Southland Inter Schools' Speech Contest. They move on to Round 2 on September 2nd.

Religious Education Festival

Congratulations to those students who were awarded prizes for their entries in the annual RE Fair. The achievement of these student’s was recognised with a presentation of book vouchers at the Patronal Day Mass. The entries have been displayed in a number of the contribution parish churches. Thank you to Mrs Crawford for her work co-ordinating this event.

Results from RE Festival

Year 7: 1st Jack King; 2nd Sian Hughes; 3rd Equal Katrina Carpenter and Tanisha Morgan-Wohlers.
Year 8: 1st Ella Prendergast; 2nd Anna Marie Baker; 3rd equal Jayden Crooks and Christopher Lieshout.
Year 9: 1st Arpege Bragg

Year 7: 1st Sophie McLean 7AD; 2nd Samuel Rillstone 7AD; 3rd equal Brodie Crooks 7AD and Josh Griffiths.
Year 8: 1st Dermot Hughes, Scott McDonald, Vaughan Mussen 8SM; 2nd Georgia Macdonald 8JS; 3rd equal Sean Goffin, Taylor Beckham 8KM and Robert Lindsay and Andrew O’Brien 8KM.
Year 9: 1st Alex Kitson, Joanne Taningco; 2nd Ashleigh Frewen, Ashleigh MacDougall 903; 3rd equal Shanice Dunn, Mechaela Bruce and Kaley Williams.
Year 10: Highly Commended Alex, Michael, Caitlin and Nick.

Written Research
Year 7: 1st Grace Dowling 7AD; 2nd Sean Bragg 7MO.
Year 10: 1st Meg Prendergast

Year 8: 1st Bonna Salomeo, Eilish Duggan, Danielle Shierlaw, Pagan Parkes 8SM; 2nd Katherine Edwards, Jacob Turnhout, Alex Keen, Cody Watkinson; 3rd Candice Dyer 8JS
Year 9: 1st Kerryn Olsen, Brittany Sinclair 903; 2nd Greta Melvin, Grace Dunn, Joe Lodge, Lucy Heenan, Sam Short, Shannon Haynes 901.
Year 10: 1st Lauren Archer

Illustrated Bible Passage
Year 7: 1st Brodie Vermeulen; 2nd Shontae Oudhoff; 3rd Fusi Maka

Year 8: 1st Taylor le Breton, Eleanor Morrison.
Year 9: 1st Izak Lal, Connor Harwood
Year 10: 1st Rebecca Lieshout, Holly Harrex

Year 9: 1st Liam Hogan

Year 11 Quiz
1st equal Atrayl Elliot-Roderique and Megan Gooding.

Patronal Day

On Friday the 15th the College travelled by bus to St Theresa’s for the Patronal Day Mass. A special thanks to our celebrant, Fr Martin Flannery, Mr Tait our director of religious studies, Mr Menzies for the music and the senior student helpers. The feast of the Assumption of Mary is also the Marist Brothers feast day, so it was a pleasure to be able to welcome them as one of our founding orders. Thank you also to the many parents and friends of the College who were also able to attend. Students entered into a wide range of house activities during the afternoon. Fine weather helped keep spirits high for the outdoor sports. Thank you to staff, parents and community providers who arranged the afternoon activities. These foster the special character which builds the Verdon Family.

Staff Development

On Tuesday afternoon, the staff were able to undertake professional development with Australian educational consultant Dr Julia Atkin. Julia has been working with a number of staff as part of the Verdon-James Hargest-Southland Boys' High cluster. Linking values and beliefs to our work with teaching and learning was one of the key messages. This is a requirement of the revised national curriculum for all schools but it is especially relevant to Verdon College with our Catholic special character.

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Hung up on Physical Education

Mark Scobie's year 12 students Jonathan Ryan and Sam Thurlow get hung and strung by Adventure Southland's Rope and Climbing Guru Jason Holland as they attempt abseilling inside during their PE lesson.

St Kevin's Interschool

Sunday saw frost and sunshine, as our teams lined up at the bus door to travel to Oamaru for our annual St Kevin's College - Verdon College interchange.

Basketball was played on Sunday night in front of a noisy adolescent crowd, results favoured St Kevin’s in a 48-14 loss to the Senior A Boys team and a 55-25 loss to our Senior A girls.

Netball was first up on Monday morning with a great win from our Senior B team, 20-24. The A team defended hard against the gutsy St Kevin's team, falling 29-27. The soccer 1st XI kept St Kevin's in constant defence, resulting in a stunning 1-6 win. After a tremendous haka presentation from both parties and the presence of another good audience, our Rugby 1st XV battled in the afternoon sun, resulting in a 34-13 loss.

After some afternoon tea and best wishes from our past Principal Brent Russell, our crew returned home in good spirits, despite the overall loss of the interchange trophy.

Wednesday, 6 August 2008

St Peter's Interschool

On Wednesday 6th, Verdon College hosted the annual St Peter's College - Verdon College Junior Interschool. The day started with rain, but ended in sunshine, smiles and a quick afternoon tea.
The results:
Netball 7A - Verdon 19, St Peter's 3
Netball 8A - Verdon 13, St Peter's 39
Netball 9A - Verdon 17, St Peter's 24
Netball 10A - Verdon 26, St Peter's 39
Junior Girls Basketball - Verdon 36, St Peter's 56
Junior Mixed Hockey - Verdon 2, St Peter's 5
U15 Rugby - Verdon 7, St Peter's 24
Yr 7 & 8 Rugby - Verdon 0, St Peter's 104
Junior Soccer - Verdon 13, St Peter's 7

Well done to all those who participated, refereed, umpired, coached, cooked, cleaned, drove and financed this event.

Monday, 7 July 2008

Open Day: Sunday 3rd August

Verdon College Music Festival 2008

Junior Instrumental - 1st place - Ben Williams
Junior Vocal - 1st place - Patrick Collins
Intermediate Vocal - 1st place - Emily Mason
Senior Vocal - 1st place - Olivia Canny
Senior Instrumental - 1st place - Tim Lindsay
House Choirs:
1st Place - Dominic
2nd Place - Marian
3rd Place - Marcellin
4th Place - Catherine
Best Accompanist (Piano) - Cody Shuttleworth
Best Conductor - Rosamund More

Sunday, 29 June 2008

Social Justice

On Sunday night, Year 13 students slept in a make shift shelter in the College grounds to raise funds for CARITAS. The evening was bitterly cold, but donations of food and warm drinks from supporters kept spirits high. Thank you to the many visitors who helped and contributed to this very worthy fundraising venture.

Careers News

Verdon College has been very fortunate to have a number of students accepted for NZ Armed Forces Courses these holidays.

As well as Shane Evans-Rautahi being accepted for the Airforce, Warena Brown has been accepted to go to Devonport Naval Base for the Royal NZ Navy Adventure Challenge.

Jonathan Ryan, Sam Thurlow, Matthew Debono, Michael Tattersfield and Matthew Crooks have been selected to go to the NZ Army Careers Experience in Burnham Military Camp also.

Well done to all these students.

Kavanagh Interschool Win

On Wednesday the 25th of June, Verdon played host to the Kavanagh College interchange. With wins in all but one game, it was a resounding success. A special mention must go to the 1st XV Rugby team who had their first win since 1999.
Rugby: Verdon 70 - 3 Win
Hockey: Verdon 6 - 0 Win
Soccer: Verdon 3 - 6 Loss
Senior A Netball: Verdon 30- 23 Win
10A Netball: Verdon 22 - 21 Win
9A Netball: Verdon 21 - 13 Win


Our congratulations to the members of Panache who returned this week from their Sydney trip having been awarded a silver medal at the international music festival. Pictured: Panache Choir entertaining on a Sydney harbour cruise and warming up on the steps of the Sydney Opera House.

Monday, 16 June 2008

Southland Secondary Schools Badminton

On Wednesday last week, eight of our students battled it out on the badminton courts for the Southland Secondary Schools Sport's Badminton Champs. Well done to the girls team, Lauren Morsink, Kayla Geary, Louise Moody and Amy Radka who came 5th. Well done also to the boys who came 4th, their team was Sean Adam, Logan Simpson, Charles More and Isaac Fleury. Both teams played hard and enjoyed their day. Special thanks to Sue Shaw for her organisation.

Kavanagh College Visit

Next Wednesday 25th June, Kavanagh College is scheduled to visit our school in the annual Verdon - Kavanagh College inter-school. The teams involved are the Rugby 1st XV, Boys Soccer 1st XI, Boys Hockey 1st XI, Netball Senior A, Year 10 A & Year 9 A Netball. If your child is involved please ensure you recieved a letter, $5 is required from each student involved to put towards afternoon tea. The visitors are schedualed to arrive around 10.30am. Students are to come to school as usual, dressed in school uniform, they may change for their game but must be dressed in uniform again for the afternoon tea.

  • Soccer 11.30am kick off at Verdon College
  • Hockey 11.30am start at Queens Park Hockey Turf
  • Year 9A Netball 12pm* start at Stadium Southland Velodrome
  • Year 10A Netball 1pm* start at Stadium Southland Velodrome
  • Senior A Netball 12pm* start at Stadium Southland Velodrome
  • Rugby 1pm Kickoff at Verdon College

*Please note that this has changed (19th June)

Afternoon tea is schedualed for 2.30pm at the College, please report to the office on your arrival, all parents are welcome to attend. Kavanagh College teams will depart at 3pm.

Marcellin Day

St Marcellin’s Feast Day was celebrated with Mass at St Theresa's Church last Friday. For Fr Martin, this was his first opportunity to celebrate a College Mass. Thank you to the parents and friends of the College who attended Mass to support the College and the Marist Brothers on their special day.

The Verdon Ball

The Verdon Ball was held 7 June at the Working Mens Club. This superb venue was host to our Year 12 and 13 students and partners. Stunning ball gowns and sartorial elegance were the order of the evening. It was a pleasure for staff and students to dine and dance in such convivial surroundings. Our thanks to the Ball Committee and staff who made the evening such a tremendous success.

Outstanding Achievement

Congratulations to

  • Stephanie McRae who has had her poem entitled “The Diamond” published in the Poetry.Com International Collection.

  • Zac Vermuelen and Shane Evans who have been awarded the Outward Bound ILT Scholarship. This entitles them to a 3 week outdoor course at Anakiwa in the Marlborough Sounds.

  • Vigoroso Vibrato— a.k.a. Tim Lindsay, Patrick Wilks, Cody Shuttleworth and Megan McKelvie, were highly commended for their outstanding performance at the Southland Chamber Music Contest held on 11 June.

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Photos Online

Photos from a few more events are now online:

The "official" photos from JRock can be ordered online from the official website, using the password dance to enter the Verdon College section of the photos.

Verdon’s Gold Medallist

Jessica Hamill departed for Beijing on 28 May to compete in a competition called the “Good Luck Games”. It is a very popular event as most athletes use it as a warm up competition before the Olympics. Jess went for the experience, to see what Beijing was like, and how she would perform with the Beijing pollution, smog and heat. Her events were held at the national stadium which is known as the birds nest.

Jess competed in the shot put event receiving a Gold medal. With her throw of 7.12 metres she achieved a New Zealand record, an Oceania record, as well as recording a personal best.

With this win giving her confidence, Jess is looking forward to the Paralympics where she will compete in Shot Put, Discus and Javelin. She is training hard and is on track to record more personal bests.

When asked how she liked Beijing, she said “I liked the City, but it was dirty and very busy, but it does have very very good shopping!” Well done Jessica.

The Big Sing

On Tuesday evening,June 3rd, the two school choirs, Panache and the Verdon Singers, performed with distinction at the annual Choral Federations Big Sing Southland Regional Finals. Panache won the post 1900 section of the festival. This outstanding achievement gives the choir confidence as they prepare for their Australian Tour later in the term.


Congratulations to Tim Lindsay and Patrick Wilkes who as “Hemisemidemiquavers” won their section at the Gold Guitars in Gore at Queen’s Birthday weekend.

National Shakespeare Festival

A group of 12 Verdon College students—Regional winners of the annual University of Otago Sheilah Winn Festival of Shakespeare In Schools - competed in the National Festival over Queen’s Birthday weekend. The students Rosamund More, Olivia Canny, Cody Shuttleworth, Rachel Butler, Ben Cochrane, Alice McDowell, Ben Wilmot, Braydon Macdonald, Natalie Kerr, Olivia Gorton, Rebecca Abey and Jamie Macdonald - were accompanied by the director Mrs Horrell and teacher Mrs More.

Verdon College’s punk rock version of ‘A Midsummer Nights Dream’ achieved the award for Outstanding use of Music and Song in Performance. The performance was delivered with conviction and energy and had great audience appeal.

Over the long weekend festival period, apart from the competition itself, students took part in stimulating workshops. The workshops were taken by professional actors and directors in the theatre profession. Popular workshops included stage combat, contemporising Shakespeare, giving 100% to your audience and ‘playing dead’.

In addition to the Shakespeare festival, other wonderful cultural experiences included live theatre, a Greek restaurant meal and an exploration of inner city Wellington (including a visit to Te Papa Museum for some).The group were a delight to journey with and our Verdon students were excellent ambassadors of Southland.

Monday, 9 June 2008


Thanks Coach, without you there wouldn't be a game. As a coach, you help make sport happen in our community. Coaching is about sharing your knowledge and experience, about making sport fun and giving everyone a go. It's about teaching discipline, fair play and skills that will help athletes in all aspects of their lives. You will play an important role in making sure your athletes learn to enjoy sport.

When ever you are coaching sports, consider the following:
Children of all ages are interested in four things when they play sport
Action - Children like lots of action, i.e. lots of running, hitting, catching, shooting, scoring and so on.
Personal involvement - Children want to be involved in the action, not sitting on the bench or waiting in line for their turn.
Close competition and challenges matching their skills - Close scores make games exciting and lopsided scores make them boring.
Opportunities to reaffirm their friendships - This is demonstrated in the way teams are chosen and the strategies children use during games. They often develop long lasting friendships through their participation in sport.

Go online for Watties Vollunteer Coach of the Year Awards and nominate your coach.

Getting Started in Coaching

Well done to the six girls who attended the "Getting started in coaching" course held at the Stadium on Friday. It was outlined immediately that coaches are very sought after and that teams are extremely grateful to have such students who are willing to coach.
Olivia Gorton, Holly Morton, Danielle Thomas, Clare Corkery, Lauren Kelman and Rebecca Leishout represented Verdon College in a group of approximately 50 students from other Southland Secondary School. The groups were firstly introduced to a panel of well known Southland coaches including Richard Dickle from Basketball Southland, Daryl Thompson from Rugby Southland and Robyn Broughton from the Southern Steel. Each with their own words of advice, inspired the youth and later applied an afternoon of coaching exhibits. Rickie Dickle, Rosie de Goldi and Kelly Hansen applied simple drills and lesson structure to three 30min sessions in which groups rotated. Students were challenged to understand each coaches methods and delivery and take with them advise and new drills. The girls enjoyed the practical sessions, and a yummy lunch was a big bonus.

School Ball Photos

The School Ball was held on Saturday night, and was a fantastic night for our senior students. Informal photos of the event are now online in our online Photo Album.

Well Done!

A massive congratulations to Allanah Cunningham who has been working extremely hard with her extra-curricular activites, Allanah has recently qualified herself as a New Zealand Regional Netball Umpire.
"This achievement is amazing for someone so young and there is no doubt that there is plenty more to come." - Marie McMillan
Allanah's next step is to do the Netball New Zealand Theory and then the Netball New Zealand Practical, following this she has the opportunity to become a New Zealand National Netball Umpire. Allanah is a highly recommended and very well qualified sports official, great work!

Friday, 30 May 2008

2008 Representative Netball

Congratulations to the following students on their selection for Invercargill representative teams:
under 21 - Kendall McMinn and Whitney Areaiiti
under 17A - Gemma Roberts
under 17B - Rosie Brown
under 16 - Katie Telfer; Jo Telfer (NTR)
Southland Team which competed in inaugural Lois Muir Challenge - Kendall McMinn; Whitney Areaiiti (reserve) - Under 15 and Intermediate level teams are yet to be named.

Rockquest Winners

Home grown band “Room to Move” played at assembly this week showcasing the depth of musical talent being nurtured in the College. Following their Rockquest win, they will prepare a 15 minute DVD from which the national finalist will be selected later this term.
Room to Move band members from left Olivia Canny (vocals), Ryan Dyer (lead guitar), Connor Singh (drums), and Sam Heathcote (bass guitar) celebrating their win at the Rockquest Southland regional finals last Friday.

Tae Kwon Do Winners

Congratulations to Kayne Duggan and Lexi Monaghan-Neutze who gained gold medals at the Tae Kwon Do National Tournament held in Christchurch last weekend. Kayne who holds a blue belt competed in the 150-160cm group for juniors and Lexi who holds a Red Belt with Black Tips competed in the junior female under 50 kilo section.

Indoor Rock Climbing

Five Verdon students competed in the Southland Secondary Schools Rock Climbing Competition on Saturday 24th May. The teams event was lead by a strong and determined group of year 12 boys, Matthew Debono, Matthew Crooks and Ethan Duggan. They climbed for over 2 hours in the teams event and attempted the individuals competition in the afternoon before their arms and hands proved completely exhausted.
Brodie Vermeulen competed in the boys individual climbing where he came second. It was a fun and successful day all round with plenty of great spot prizes taken home, kindly donated by Adventure Southland. Well done all who attended, thanks to Paul Olsen for his coaching and guidance.

It is intended that the climbing group will continue and new students are encourage and very welcome to join in.