Compass No. 577 July 2020

From the Principal

Writing A Powerful Story Together

Each of us lives a life that tells a powerful story. Every one of us has a unique set of gifts, talents and perspectives that shape our story. Owning our stories and embracing the opportunity to learn through our relationships and life experiences to shape a story full of purpose and hope brings a richness into life. Our purpose grows through bringing capacity, purpose and hope into the stories of others and the stories of the groups and communities to which we belong. 

Where we draw on deeply held values and the wisdom of generations, there is depth and a sustaining richness to our stories. Families play a very important role in providing a loving and secure place where the generational sharing of values and ways of being can be shared as individual and family stories are shaped together. All of us are part of God’s family. We can be safe and secure in His unconditional love and draw on His wisdom shared within the Bible. Empowered by His love and wisdom, we can be courageous and compassionate in the shaping of purposeful and hope-filled individual, family and community stories. As a community we can write powerfully together.

Principal's Log

Welcome to the start of Term 3, which has a new energy about it as we look forward to the next phase of our learning. A particular welcome to new students and their families and Dr Ashwita Venkatesh who has joined us as a Middle and Senior College Mathematics and Science teacher and Junior College teacher Mrs Shelley Hogan who has returned from maternity leave.

It has been good to see the community being energised by the opportunity to re-engage with the broader co-curricular experiences as we have returned this term. Students have enjoyed engaging in before and after school sport practices and music rehearsals and are no doubt looking forward to connecting together as part of the robotics clubs and other co-curricular experiences. The Year 8 students are also looking forward to their outdoor education experience next week. We thank all of our parents and teachers who have made the commitment to give of their time to support these important co-curricular experiences, including our Saturday soccer and netball clubs.

This week, our Year 10 families have been engaging with a new online subject information and selection process. Families have had the opportunity to be part of Zoom information sessions conducted by our Head of Learning Senior College, Head of Career Development and the Heads of Department. These sessions have also been recorded to enable families to revisit or access information at a time convenient to them. We thank Mrs Anne-Marie Gerlach, Mrs Wanda Hayes and the Heads of Department for their leadership of this process and wish our Year 10 students all the best as they consider their future pathways.

Over the holidays, families will have received a mid-year letter from me via email which detailed arrangements for this term, developments completed and planned for the past and next 12 months, feedback about last year’s review process and an invitation to participate in this year’s Annual Review. The review is a short survey that should take less than 10 minutes and is important for future planning. We encourage all families to help shape the story of the College by taking the opportunity to provide feedback via:

Congratulations to senior student Tom Loane who, over the holidays, was awarded the inaugural Ready, Set, Go! Bursary from Mr Andrew Wallace MP, Federal Member for Fisher. Tom is currently completing a Certificate II in Electrotechnology through the Sunshine Coast Technical Trade Training Centre and recently undertook work experience with DNA Queensland Electrical. Tom chose to spend his $1000 bursary on tools, which will have him well prepared for his selected trade.

May God guide us and equip us to write powerfully together.

Dr Bronwyn Dolling, Principal

From the College Council

College Principal Re-Appointment

The College's governing body, the College Council, is happy to announce that Dr Bronwyn Dolling has been offered, and has accepted, an appointment for another term of office for the next five years. As a community, we are blessed to have the dedicated service of Dr Dolling with her extensive qualifications, experience and undoubted ability to lead our College into the future. We look forward to continuing to work with Dr Dolling and the College’s senior leadership team. May God continue to bless our College, our Principal and the Pacific community as we navigate the future together.

Ruth Zerner; College Council Chair

From the College Pastor

Threads This Term

At Pacific, we use a series of themes and bible readings in our chapels and devotions called ‘threads’. These threads are also communicated to families through the Compass newsletter. They are called threads because they are strands that run through the positive development and emotional and spiritual growth of children and young people. The threads this term focus on the relational aspects of family, supportive adults and caring schools and neighbourhoods, which are the primary places where positive relationships are developed in the life of a child and teenager.

Family can be the central fireplace where love, support, emotional security and identity are formed and warmed in the life of a person. This happens through positive communication when a young person is willing to seek a parent’s advice and counsel. Young people also have access to other trusted adults where relationships, support and mentoring can happen. This is important for their positive development and social and emotional intelligence. Other trusted adults beyond parents are developed when relationships grow with caring neighbours in the wider community and with teachers and staff in an encouraging school environment.

A strand that is common to these relational networks of support is love. A love that is selfless in thinking of others, serving the needs of others and forgiving the deeds of others. Love is what is needed for healthy relationships to grow in our families, school and community. The New Testament writer Paul puts it this way; Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs… It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails (1 Corinthians 14:4-8).

May this thread of God’s love continue to weave its way through your relationships at home, at school and with your neighbours this term.

Pastor Tim Jarick, College Pastor

From the Director of Students

Embracing Emotions

Welcome back to all families for the commencement of Term 3 and a new semester. In particular, we warmly welcome all new students and their families as you become a valued member of the College community. We are thankful that all students were back on campus from day one. Indeed, this simple measure on its own may be sufficient to allow students to feel safe and comfortable as they engage in learning and re-connect with each other and their teachers. Of course, we all need to continue to remind ourselves and our young people of the various guidelines in place as outlined by the Principal in her letter to all families during the holidays on Monday 29th June.

Emotions, Feelings and Moods

One of the great things about working with young people is that they bring a vibrancy to the community. The challenge is to continue to build their social and emotional competency such that they have the capacity to self-regulate. One of the major ways we can support students in this regard is to increase their emotional literacy. Emotions are a physical interpretation of something we have experienced. They are brief, perhaps only lasting a second. Happiness, joy, disgust and anger are some of the basic emotions we might experience depending on the stimulus. Feelings are the mental interpretations of the emotion. They are longer lasting and are something we sense. Whilst moods are more general in nature and are a mixture of emotion and feelings, which can last for days.

Crucially, it is important that we all appreciate the need for both positive and negative emotions in our lives. We need to accentuate the positive as well as validate the negative. Given that we are programmed to experience negative emotions more strongly, research informs us that, as a minimum for our wellbeing, for every negative emotion we need to experience three positive ones. Fortunately, there are a range of strategies to support a positive mindset which are accessible for all ages. Two simple ways are avoiding the use of defeating language and maintaining a gratitude journal. Consequently, whilst we are cognisant of what is occurring outside of our students’ control, it is important to continue to encourage our young people to control what they can and that starts with how they respond to the many and varied experiences they will have this term.

Uniform guidelines

A polite reminder that students are to be wearing their full winter formal uniform. Students are also expected to continue adhering to the make-up, jewellery and hair guidelines that have been in place since the start of the year. Please connect with your child’s PHG teacher or Head of House in the first instance if you require any further clarification.

Mr Ben Ryan, Director of Students

From the Head of Staff and Students P-5

Welcome Back!

Welcome to the new term. I hope all families spent a relaxing and enjoyable time together over the holidays.

As we begin a new term, we thank our Year 5 leaders from Term 2 and congratulate and welcome the new leaders for Term 3. The Term 3 leaders will receive their badges on next week’s virtual assembly.

Parent Teacher Conferences

Parent teacher conferences will be held for Prep – Year 5 students next week. You will have received communication from the College regarding the new process for these conferences, which will now be run digitally via Whereby. Although the conferences are not compulsory, they provide an ideal opportunity for parents, teachers and students to discuss Semester 1 results. If you require further clarification around this topic, please contact your child’s teacher or our Head of Learning K-5 Mrs Sue Zweck.

You Can Do It Program

Over the next few weeks, the focus for the You Can Do It Program relates to developing persistence and the habits of mind related to working tough, giving effort and developing an ‘I can do it’ attitude. Persistence means trying your best and not giving up when something feels like it is too hard to do. Examples of persistent behaviour include:

  • Continuing to try even when work is hard;
  • Not being distracted by others; and
  • Checking work when it is finished.

Often students need to experience what it feels like to succeed if they are to be successful in the future. Success or achievement does not come without effort and persistence. Success is about each individual achieving their potential. Parents can support and develop persistence in their children by staying positive, encouraging effort and recognising success.

The concept of persistence fits neatly with developing positive types of thinking skills. The You Can Do It Program not only fosters the development of thinking, it supports children in achieving to the best of their ability and aids them in developing social and emotional wellbeing and emotional resilience. 

College Uniform

It is great to see many of the students out on the ovals or playing in the grounds during breaks and heartening to see so many of our students abiding by our sun safe policy. We are also grateful for parental support in encouraging and reminding all students to wear a hat to school every day. As the weather continues to remain cool, we ask that items such as jackets and jumpers are clearly named so they may be easily returned in the case of them being misplaced. We also ask that students continue to co-ordinate the correct jumper with the correct uniform.


As restrictions remain in place for external visitors to the school, we remind parents that entering the College grounds is strictly by appointment only. If picking students up before the close of school, we ask that you ring P-5 Students so they may make the necessary arrangements with their class teacher and your child can be brought out to the car park for collection.

We thank you for your continued flexibility in working with the College and our plan at the drop-off and pick up areas. We ask parents to remain with their cars and staff will bring your child to you.

With the recommencement of sports training on the College grounds, the bike racks have been moved back to their traditional spot, adjacent to the courts connected to the gym. The front entry via the gym will remain closed. Parents riding with their children to school are asked to stop at the front car park and allow their child to cross to the racks individually.

Parents are also reminded that students need to bring a named 1-2 litre water bottle for use throughout the day as bubblers are still turned off.

Take care and God bless.

Mr Damian Davis, Head of Staff and Students P-5

Food for Thought

How to Feed Your Child's Gut Microbiome

A healthy microbiome is vital to protect our overall health and brain health. There is a growing belief and important research within the medical community that supports the theory that an unhealthy gut microbiome can affect the brain and neurological development of a child. For more information, visit:

Mrs Annie Williams, College Counsellor

Important Notices

School Photos - Wednesday 5th August

Final details are still being organised and envelopes will be distributed shortly.

School photographs are scheduled to be taken by advancedlife. If possible, it is preferred by the photographers that ordering be completed online.

All students are to wear their formal school uniform on the photography day.

2020 Non-Government School Census Collection Notice

The Australian Government Department of Education, Skills and Employment has requested Pacific to provide them with basic information about our school such as its name, address, contact details, years of schooling and number and makeup of its staff. Pacific must also provide information to the Australian Government about the makeup of our student body during an annual school census, including the number of:

  • Primary and secondary students
  • Full-time and part-time students
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students
  • Students with disability
  • Students with low English proficiency
  • Students receiving distance education
  • Boarding students
  • Overseas students.

For further details, please click here.

College News

Year 6 Minecraft Challenge

At the end of last term, Year 6 set a Minecraft Challenge for students. Over a two-week period, students were tasked with creating a structure using Minecraft Education Edition to build on their collaboration and problem-solving skills.

Sonny, Phoebe and Jemma worked in a team to build PLC and were crowned the overall winners! Following is an overview of the process they undertook for the challenge. An incredible amount of time was spent on this project and the results were fantastic! Sonny, Phoebe and Jemma also created a short clip of their Minecraft, which is featured below. Congratulations to these students and well done to all who participated as there was some amazing structures created.

“To build PLC, we took pictures during our lunch breaks and explored inside some of the buildings. We then broke it into two parts, the primary and secondary school. Phoebe focussed on the primary school, Jemma focussed on the secondary school and Sonny helped out across both areas. Since the project was so large, we used video conferencing tools and social media to connect with each other at home. We spent around 2-6 hours per day working on the school to finish it.

We found that the colourings of the school and scale of the buildings were difficult to maintain. We learnt a lot about math in this project to ensure the buildings were the correct size.”

Mrs Linda Sydes, Year 6 Teacher

Sport News

Athletics Carnivals

Last term we were unable to run our Inter-House Athletics Carnivals due to the restrictions in place around COVID-19. With the easing of restrictions over the holidays, we have rebooked the athletics facilities at USC and are planning to hold our carnivals later this term, as follows:

  • Primary Athletics Carnival (Year 3-6) – Thursday 20th August
  • Secondary Athletics Carnival (Year 7-12) – Friday 21st August

The Prep – Year 2 Athletics Carnival is also scheduled for Monday 31st August and will be run here at the College.

Unfortunately, under the current guidelines, we are unable to accommodate spectators at these carnivals.


Kayaking recommences this term, with training starting next Monday 20th July! It is an additional sporting opportunity outside of school hours for students across Years 5-12.

Training occurs each Monday and Thursday afternoon at the Lake Kawana Finish Tower, Sportsman Parade, Bokarina. Students will be training in preparation for the Queensland Schools Canoe Championships, which is scheduled for Saturday 17th October.

For more information, please contact Mr Graves Graves via email: We’re looking forward to getting back on the water!

Tennis Lessons

Mr Darren Hooper, Head of Sport

Club Sport

Pacific FC

After an extended hiatus, Saturday games returned on the weekend. We thank all players, coaches, managers and spectators for their patience in respecting the COVID-19 restrictions.

“It could be easy to forget, but Saturday was the first official game ever for Pacific FC’s youngest team, the U6 Scorpions. With zero subs and a massive field, the parents on the side line were interested to see how it would go and IT WAS AMAZING! There was awesome teamwork and passing all round and with three goals scored, they won the match 3-0. Awesome work Scorpions!” Match report courtesy of Mel Evans, U6 Scorpions Manager.

We also thank Kawana Sports Precinct for hosting our club training over the past few weeks. Modified training sessions will now resume back at the College. We ask that you and your family continue to practice good hygiene and follow directives from coaches and managers.

See you on the paddock!

Mrs Rita Williams, Pacific FC President

St Mark’s Lutheran Church

Holy Communion Worship

Sunday 19th July and Sunday 16th August

8.30am, 9.30am, 10.30am

14 Bombala Terrace, Caloundra

All welcome!

Booking for seating: Facebook, website or by phone: 0488 556 150.

Pastor Ray, St Mark’s Lutheran Church