Year 5 and 6 at St Sebastian's

Earlier this term I received an invitation from Chris Leadbetter, the Principal of St Laurence’s College (SLC), to visit the college. Last week along with other local primary school principals we toured the extensive facilities and attended an assembly before discussing the enrolment processes with the college leaders. Chris Leadbetter confirmed that we have a preferred enrolment agreement and that he would guarantee the enrolment of our St Sebastian’s boys in Year 7. Of course they will accept enrolments in Year 5 but if YOU choose to delay your son’s entry until Year 7 they will be guaranteed a place!

St Sebastian’s has so much to offer all of its students in the final two years of primary school but we need to re-establish a healthier gender balance across our Years 5 and 6 classes. This change from ‘what has always happened’ is only going to occur if parents are prepared to delay the enrolment of their child to the independent colleges and take advantage of the many great opportunities on offer at St Sebastian’s…at a fraction of the cost! I encourage you to start having conservations with each other about the possibility of keeping your child at St Sebastian’s until the end of Year 6.

The opportunities we are able to offer our students are equal to, if not better, than what the independent colleges have to offer. We are providing an innovative, progressive and inclusive co-educational environment that allows children the opportunity to be children while at the same time preparing them very well for high school & beyond.

The success of the students who have completed Year 6 with us is testimony to the excellent innovative learning and teaching opportunities in our school. Sport has often been touted as a reason for choosing to send a child to an independent college in Year 5. However, I do not believe that this should be seen as a factor that would detract from keeping your child at St Sebastian’s. Almost all of the sport played by the Colleges occurs on weekends and training sessions are outside of school hours. The needs of all of our students can be equally catered for by the great array of clubs on offer in the local district.
One of the greatest benefits for children at St Sebastian’s, in years 5 and 6, is the opportunity to take on the role of school leader. We do not elect school captains. All Year 6 and 5 children take on the role of leader and have the opportunity to develop and practise leadership skills. Feedback from a range of colleges suggests that many students who are elected into leadership positions in Year 12 have in fact arrived at the independent colleges in Year 7 or 8. They are being elected into these roles because of the leadership skills they have brought with them from their experiences at catholic schools, like St Sebastian’s.

I encourage you to have conversations with other parents and to collectively take advantage of the many great opportunities offered to all students at St Sebastian’s, from the Preps through to our Year 6 student leaders.

Kerry Weber - Principal