Compass No 709 - February 2024

From the Principal

Nurturing The Joy of Creativity Through Productive Struggle

We grow our capacity to think creatively as we engage in the productive struggle to learn or to produce something new. As we learned to ride a bike, we had to overcome challenges, learn through mistake making and problem solving as we tried different strategies. We had to think critically and build connections between different areas and times of learning. There was a great sense of achievement, fun and joy when we finally got it. Parents and others gave us clues but we had to think creatively, form connections, persist and problem solve to finally succeed. We had to do the mistake making, thinking and learning.

We learn best when we bring these same dispositions to all areas of learning. Bringing wonder, curiosity and creativity into our learning promotes critical thinking, problem solving and innovation, builds connections, enables us to explain the unexpected, and grapple with uncertainty. It lights up our brains. Approaching our learning, the world and life with, I wonder if..., Imagine if..., What if…, opens us to new possibilities and growth. Where we bring a creative spirit, we are open to a sense of fun. Wonder, curiosity, and creativity enhance our learning across all dimensions of life and our wellbeing.

God created us in His own image. Being in the image of the great Creator, means that each of us have a strong creative spirit. As we engage creatively there is a strong sense of joy and possibility. Our minds are open. There is a spirit of playfulness that energises. 

Principal's Log

It was energising to connect with families across our Middle College and Prep – Year 5 at our Information Evenings this week. The evenings provided an important opportunity for parents to learn more about the cultural underpinnings of learning at Pacific. Young people grow best where they experience a strong synergy between the culture of being, thinking and learning at home and in school. The evenings also provided opportunity for parents to connect with each other and with staff. We thank our Hospitality team for providing tasty canapes and refreshments for our Middle College and Prep – Year 5 Information Evenings. We thank our Chaplain, leadership team and teachers for their valuable input into the evenings and parents for your attendance and engagement. We look forward to a year where we continue to build parent engagement and capacity to enhance learning.

Our Scholars’ Assembly provided the opportunity to celebrate the students who were top of subject and the 25 students who had achieved an ATAR of 90 or more. We valued the opportunity to listen to the 2022 Dux Noah Winten and to celebrate the achievements of the 2023 Dux Ben McCormac (99.75) and Proxime Accessit Daniel Whittingham (99.35). We also congratulated two of our 2023 graduates on being awarded scholarships. Evy Gover has received a partial scholarship for a 2- year degree of musical theatre with The New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts, school of film and television. Evy’s partial scholarship is valued over $20,000 US. Abigail Tracey was also awarded a $10,000 scholarship from QUT for Women in Science, Mathematics and IT Merit. Hugo Winten has since been offered a QUT Excellence in Creative Industries scholarship having a value of $10,000. We thank Noah Winten for his thought-provoking reflections about maintaining balance and friendships throughout Year 12 and the first year of University, our graduates and their parents for their attendance and Head of Learning Senior College, Ms Anne-Marie Gerlach for her leadership of the event.

We look forward to the return of our Year 8 students on Friday afternoon from their 5-day Outdoor Education experience. The experience has provided wonderful opportunities for each student to grow in their connections to each other, the environment and to God. Important skills of teamwork, problem solving, self-confidence, and social emotional capacities are also expanded through the experience. We thank Head of Outdoor Education, Mr Paul Brace for his organisation and leadership. We also thank Ms Alisha Bausch, Mr Rob Belchamber, Mr Sam Irwin, Mrs Sharon Middleton, Miss Taylor Edwards, Miss Rebekah Horsey, and Mr Josh Danzey, for their generosity of time in connecting with and leading our students on camp.

I will be on leave from Thursday 1st February until Monday 12th February. During this time Director of Students, Ms Leigh Finter and Head of Learning K-5, Mrs Sue Zweck will be Acting Principals.

We pray that God would continue to spark a sense of wonder and creativity into all that we do.

Dr Bronwyn Dolling, Principal 

From the College Chaplain

I Believe I Can...

As a child, I was captivated by the classic tale of "The Little Engine That Could" – the determined locomotive facing a seemingly insurmountable challenge, chanting the mantra, "I-think-I-can; I-think-I-can." The story taught me about positive thinking and perseverance, but as I reflected on it, I questioned whether success could truly be as simple as repeating the phrase "I think I can."

Having already encountered both successes and failures in my young life, I recognised that blind confidence didn't always lead to triumph. Life's journey revealed that failure was an intrinsic part of the path to success, a lesson not explicitly conveyed in the story. I saw the little engine as someone attempting to shoulder the burden alone, even though they were assisting someone else.

As a Christian, my thoughts turned to the words of Philippians 4:12-13, where it is written, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." In this passage, the author speaks of finding contentment in all situations, even in the midst of adversity. Writing from prison, he acknowledges that it is through the strength provided by God that he is able to persevere. When I consider the story of "The Little Engine That Could”, I draw parallels to this passage from Philippians.

With Christ, it's not just about saying, "I think I can," but confidently declaring, "I know I can." The assurance comes from the understanding that God walks with us, providing strength and hope. God's care for us is demonstrated in sending His Son to be with us, guiding us each day. This profound truth forms the essence of the greatest message we can embrace.

So, perhaps as a child, I wasn't overthinking the story after all. Maybe, in those ponderings, I was glimpsing a deeper truth—a truth that points not just to self-affirmation but to the enduring strength found in the presence of Christ in our lives.

Mr Mark Hauser, College Chaplain

From the Head of Middle College

Middle College Program

What a wonderful start to the year from our Middle College Students. We are thrilled to have each and every one of you as part of our Pacific community.

Energy levels have been very high, with students diving into their studies and embracing their learning and connection times provided. We are delighted to witness the curiosity, passion, and deep thinking display by many students.

We extend our gratitude to all the parents who attended the Middle College Information Evening this week. Your presence and active participation are crucial to fostering a strong partnership between home and school. We hope you found the evening informative and insightful as we discussed key aspects of the Middle College program, academic expectations, and the various support services available to ensure your child's success.

Our dedicated team of teachers are committed to providing a nurturing and intellectually stimulating environment and we believe that effective communication between parents and teachers is fundamental to your child's educational journey. The Information Evening was a valuable opportunity for us to connect, share insights, and address any questions or concerns you may have had. We truly appreciate your engagement and commitment to your child's education and encourage you to communicate often with us.

As we embark on this journey together, we are excited about the prospects that the year holds for our Middle College students. The Middle College program is designed to empower students, fostering a love for learning, critical thinking skills, and a sense of responsibility. We are confident that with your support and our collaborative efforts, our students will be free to flourish and reach new heights of academic and personal achievement.

Wishing you and your family a wonderful 2024 as part of our community.

Mr Brett Kersnovske, Head of Middle College Students

From the Head of Learning K-5

Helping with Home Learning

Home learning is an expectation for our students. The nature of the activities will vary so it is best to discuss expectations with your child’s teacher. All educators agree that reading is the most valuable home learning a child can do and should become a daily habit. Parents can help children develop sound study habits from a young age which include establishing a predictable routine, encouraging effective use of time, and helping them to be organised. There will be no new content given for home learning - it will be work that has been taught and done in class.

  • Establish a predictable routine. If home learning is done at the same time each night, getting started is usually less of an issue.
  • Make home learning time as enjoyable as possible. When sharing a book, make yourself comfortable, be involved in the story, and enjoy yourself. Do not make reading a test.
  • Establish a good working environment for students. Make sure they have a quiet area (away from distractions) that is well-lit and with good ventilation. A table or a desk makes a good workspace.
  • Encourage children to work reasonably quickly and efficiently. Have a set time limit which they should stick to. A little work each night is more productive than packing it all into one weekly session.
  • Encourage children to become organised by planning home learning around their extracurricular activities. A weekly planner or diary will help older students to organise themselves.
  • Keep explanations simple and practical when helping a child. If they become upset or frustrated and the atmosphere becomes tense, stop helping.
  • If your child has a problem, talk about the best way to find a solution. Perhaps between the two of you, it can be worked out.
  • Be realistic and don’t expect to solve all homework difficulties.  When in doubt send a note to your child’s teacher letting him/her know the problem.  They will appreciate being informed.

Mrs Sue Zweck, Head of Learning K-5

From the Head of Career Development

Careers News

Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards – NOW OPEN

Entries are now open for high school students from across the Sunshine Coast region to join this amazing program.

The awards are open to students in Years 9 - 12, individual or teams of up to 3, and are designed to help bring their creative concepts, innovative ideas and business solutions to life.

The Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards is an incredible opportunity for students and gives them real world skills and access to the Sunshine Coast’s leading mentors.

“For students with a new idea wishing to learn about business creation and innovation, the Mayor's Telstra Innovation Awards is the perfect place to meet well-connected people willing to help you.

The best part of the MTIA was learning about the processes of design and business while having mentors to guide and answer questions.

The MTIA helped me confirm that I want to study in a field that allows me to help, think of, and design innovative solutions to problems.”

Charlie Bidgood, 2023 MTIA Runner Up | SOLBOT

Apply on-line Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards 2024 – Study Sunshine Coast

How to book a Careers Appointment

Senior College students can now access the Careers Bookings Calendar and manage their own careers appointment, including inviting parents to join a meeting, either in person or via zoom.

Simply select the type of career- related appointment you would like and as courtesy ensure to check with your teacher that it is OK to miss all or part of lesson BEFORE making a booking.

Book appointments via the link: //" target="_blank">Pacific Lutheran Careers Support


Scan the QR Code

Mrs Veronica Sanmarco, Head of Career Development

From the College Captains

Year 12 Leadership Day

On Tuesday, the Year 12 cohort embarked on the journey that is our final year of schooling at Pacific. This commenced with our last Leadership Day which provided an opportunity for all Year 12 students to grow as leaders and mentors and engage in a range of activities which were aimed to form a strong cohesion across the cohort.

The culminating event of the day was receiving our Year 12 Jerseys and Badges. As Dr Dolling presented us with our Jersey we were encouraged to grow well and do well as leaders of the Pacific community, to wear our Jersey with pride, dignity, and respect and to inspire others within our community.

Due to the wet weather on the day, we were unable to meet our Year 2 Buddies. We are very excited to meet our Year 2 buddies in coming weeks and look forward to building a strong connection with them throughout the year.

Thank you, Year 12, for the energy and enthusiasm you brought to the Leadership Day. We wish you all the very best in your studies, leadership and interactions throughout the year.  

The 2024 College Captains and Vice Captains

Friends of Pacific

Connecting College and Community

You are invited to the Friends of Pacific AGM and first general meeting for 2024 on Tuesday 20th February at 6.30pm in the College Library.

Nominations for the following Office Bearers are being called:

 • Chairperson

 • Vice-Chairperson

 • Secretary

 • Treasurer

 • Foundation Executive (Prep-Yr 2)

 • Junior Executive (Yrs 3-5)

 • Middle Executive (Yrs 6-9) 

 • Senior Executive (Years 10-12)

 • Alumni Executive

Friends of Pacific (FoP) play a vital role in strengthening community. As a member, parents have a unique opportunity to grow our College culture and build connections with students and families. 

Throughout the year, Friends of Pacific support a variety of events and College initiatives including the annual PLC Open Day, Mother’s and Father’s Day stalls, sport carnivals, trivia nights, golf days and much more.

If you would like to nominate for a position and/or attend the upcoming meeting, please RSVP by Friday 9th February via email to:

We look forward to seeing you there! Click here to follow our Friends of Pacific Facebook page.

Ms Jan Watman, Acting Friends of Pacific Chairperson

College News

Youth Advisory Panel Presenters

We would like to thank the dedicated Year 8 students and their wonderfully supportive parents who helped facilitate the student’s participation in two Zoom call meetings with students from around the world, during the Summer holidays. Jessica Cronin, Cody Walker, Nicole Hodgett and Grace Healey were chosen from over 800 applicants to participate in the Youth Advisory Panel for the World's Largest Lesson. Our students, through these Zoom calls are fortunate enough to interact with 18 students from 16 different countries.

As most students involved in the Youth Advisory Panel do not have their summer holidays in December and January, the World’s Largest Lesson calls continued through our holiday period. In the first session, students completed activities with focus on the United Nations Climate Change Conference which was held in Dubai in December 2023. In the second session, held in January, Jessica and Cody presented their project about sewing products for injured Australian wildlife who suffer through bushfires. Our dedicated students are learning a lot about the United Nations Sustainability Goals and will be presenting their thoughts on ways that we can increase our support of these goals at Pacific very soon.

Mrs Linda Sydes, Teacher – English, Humanities

Mathematics Assistance

Welcome back to the school year. For your information, Mathematics Assistance will be available after school on a Monday from 3.15pm- 4.15pm for students who are looking for some assistance with their learning across Mathematics.

There is no need to book in, everybody is welcome.

Mrs Wendy-Lou Wescombe, Assistant Coordinator: Mathematics

Uniform Shop

The Uniform Shop is open from Monday – Thursday 8.00am – 10.30am and Tuesday Afternoon from 2.00pm - 4.00pm.  Appointments can be made via the Main Reception. 

Flexischools orders are also available for your Uniform needs. These orders will be completed Monday - Thursday and delivered to the students’ classroom in the Junior College and to the PCG pigeonholes in the Wellbeing Centre for Middle and Senior College. Please ensure that these are collected promptly to ensure that they do not go missing.

Formal Hats in some sizes are out of stock and should be back in store in the next few weeks. If you have an item on Back Order, these will be delivered to classroom (Year 6) and Wellbeing Centre (Middle and Senior College). 

Middle College Girls Ties and House Polos are now all back in stock.

Don’t forget to organise your School Swimwear and House Polos prior to the Swimming Carnivals/Trials in the first three weeks of school.

Mrs Peta King, Uniform Convenor

Library News

What’s Happening in the Library?

Scholastic Book Club

Scholastic Book Club is released twice a term and allows students to purchase books for their home library.  Book Club order forms were sent home this week to students in Kindergarten - Year 6. Older students may collect order forms from the library. Orders must be placed online by next Monday, 5th February.

Beyond the Book Literature Festival

A reminder that nomination forms for students wishing to attend must be in by Monday, 5th February. Come along and hear authors, poets and illustrators talk about their work.

Ms Narelle Keen, Teacher Librarian

Sport News

Years 7-12 Sport

Competitive Sport

We have hit the ground running with our competitive sport and several teams will be beginning their fixtures next week. Please see further information below regarding our different sport options:

SCISSA Soccer and Volleyball

Letters will be emailed out to parents in the coming days regarding students who have expressed interest in competing in either Yr 7-10 SCISSA Soccer or Yr 11-12 SCISSA Volleyball. It is important that parents read the information letter and then provide consent in Parent Lounge. This Friday will be used to finalise teams and to confirm who will be on which teams. It is important that once a student has committed, they do not withdraw part way through the season as this can become a huge challenge for their teammates, coaches and myself.

Game schedules for Round 1 this coming Wednesday 7th February will be released to students and parents once the draw is completed on the weekend. Due to the tight turnaround between determining teams and fixtures starting, we may not be able to have all teams in their playing shirts before the first round. We will advise students of this and will ask teams to play in their PLC sport shirt if need be. If you have any questions at any stage, please contact me at

Monday Night Netball

We have had an overwhelming response with netball sign-ups for 2024 and after having 9 teams in the competition last year, we will have another 9 this year. Coaches will be in touch with students over the next week with details regarding training and fixtures. Game schedules for teams will be visible from the PLC NAV calendar once the draw is released. After all teams have been confirmed, students will be advised when to go to Sport Office in their teams to collect the netball dresses.

If parents have any questions about the PLC netball program, please contact netball coordinator Michelle Dufty at

Extra Sport News


There are currently 2 opportunities for keen Rugby Union students to sign up for this term. This is the Armidale Rugby Tour and the Fraser Coast Rugby 7’s Tournament. Please see some details regarding these opportunities below:

  1. Fraser Coast 7’s Date: 22/03/24 (Week 9) Location: Fraser Coast Anglican College Age Groups: (u13 Boys, u15 Boys and Girls, Opens Boys and Girls)
  2. Armidale Rugby Tournament Date: 21st-23rd April Location: The Armidale School, Armidale Age Groups: (u12 Boys, u14 & u16 Girls)

Students are to sign-up for these opportunities via Clipboard and if they have any questions, they are to email Mr Cummins at

Run Club

A reminder for students who are interested in Run club to express their interest via Clipboard. They can email me at if sign-ups have closed. The first session will be Tuesday of week 3 (February 6th) at 7am.

Weekly Friday Sport

Each week students from Years 7-12 will participate in sporting activities on a Friday afternoon. These activities range from competitive sport training to sport development sessions for upcoming competitive sports, and sport for life options which provide students with a variety of physical activity and movement opportunities. Friday sport is a great opportunity for students to actively engage in physical activity through a lens of their choice. Friday sport commences tomorrow, times are as below.

Year 11-12 Sport: 12.15-1.15pm

Year 7-10 Sport: 1.45-3.15pm

Inter-House Swimming Carnival

All students will have an opportunity to be in the pool and get points for their house on the day.

ALL students must:

-          be at their allocated meeting places (TBC) by 8.25am on the morning of the event

-          attend and are encouraged to swim (where possible)

-          wear correct house uniform and swimmers as outlined in this letter

-          return on buses in completely dry clothes

-          not be on mobile devices on buses or throughout the day at the pool

-          swim in house coloured swim caps (provided on the day) for all events

-          students are encouraged to dress up (zinc, costumes, etc) but must do this once they arrive at school

A full program with further details will be sent to parents prior to the carnival.

District Swimming Carnival: Online Nomination of Times

Students who are keen to trial for the district are to nominate online. They will be required to provide their times for each of the particular races they are nominating for. Any student who wishes to compete in a 200m race or is requesting an exemption must have a proof of their time. More information regarding online nominations has been sent out. Students should contact Lisa Muir, PLC Sports Administrator if they have any questions –

Student Acknowledgements

Each week we aim to celebrate outstanding student achievement in their sporting pursuits, both inside and outside school sport. If you have information on outstanding achievement, don’t hesitate to contact us.

District and Regional Sporting Trials Information

Below is a list of sports and dates for District and Regional trials throughout the year. Trials are open to students in the 13 - 19 years age group.  Should you have any questions about district trials please contact Lisa Muir, PLC Sports Administrator

Mr Liam Jacka, Acting Head of Sport

Junior Sport

3 – 6 Interhouse Swimming Carnival

There was a great amount of energy at today’s Year 3-6 Swimming Carnival held at Beerwah. Keep an eye on the Pacific Facebook and Instagram page for the announcement of the House Spirit and Overall House Champion of the pool. Age Champions will be published in next week’s Compass newsletter.

Thank you to Mrs Lisa Muir, Mr Liam Jacka, Mr Damian Davis and Year 3 – 6 teaching staff for their organisation and leadership and parents for their support.


SCISSA sport will begin next Thursday 8th February for all students in Years 4-6. Students should have already advised their class teacher of their selected two sports which they would like to try on this day. Students have the opportunity to finalise their sport choice at the end of this session in Week 3. Please see the table below which contains the sport choices available to students.

Run Club

One of the extracurricular opportunities available to students at PLC is the be part of the PLC Run Club. Students in Years 3 and up meet on Tuesday mornings prior to school (7.00 – 8.00am). Run Club will start in Week Three and runs through Term 1 and 2. A sign-up sheet has been sent around to students in Years 3 – 6 this week, however if your child missed this sign up, please email Lisa Muir to receive an information and consent letter.

District and Regional Sporting Trials

Below is a list of sports and dates for District and Regional trials throughout the year. Trials are open to students in the 10 – 12 years age group. Students wishing to trial should be at a high level in their chosen sport and would need to be play competitively in an outside of school competition for this sport. 

If you would like to find out further information or register your child for one of these sports, please email Lisa Muir (PLC Sports Administrator) to register your interest.

Mr Darren Hooper, Head of Junior Sport P-6

Club Sport

Club Sport

Pacific Lutheran College has several sports development programs outside of school hours. These programs encourage participation, giving students the opportunity to be part of a team, and learn basic skills of the game.

The parent-led Pacific FC Soccer and PLC Netball Clubs compete on Saturdays in community competitions throughout the Sunshine Coast.

PLC Netball Club

Registrations are open for players from 6 to 18 years of age for the 2024 Netball season. Registrations are completed on the Netball Connect App NetballConnect - Competition Management System (

This Sunday 4th February is the PLC Netball Club Trial and uniform collection day at the PLC Gym, Woodlands Blvd, First car park entrance.

• 8.30am - 9.30am: All players aged 10 and under - these are our Go and Set teams:Collect your uniform - Enjoy a fun session for ‘SET’ players (ages 6-8) - Possible 'fun' game for ‘GO' players (ages 9 & 10)

• 9.30am -10am: All division players (ages 11 - 18) - Collect uniforms (for registered players)

• 10am - 12pm: Trials for all Division teams- please arrive promptly and be warmed up ready to take the court.

Division Information:

• Division 1-6 is competitive - ages 12-18

• Division 7-11 is non-competitive - ages 10-13

• A player’s age on 31st December of the current year will determine the age group. The age listed is the maximum age of the player.

A FUNDRAISER sausage sizzle will be available throughout the morning so please bring some coins.

Team selections will be finalised by Friday 9th February and training will commence mid-February. Training is held at PLC on the back netball courts immediately after school finishes. The training day will depend on the availability of the Coach and majority of players, usually Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday afternoons.

PLC Netball club encourages and welcomes parent involvement with our teams, so if you are interested in being a team manager or coach, please reach out.

We look forward to another wonderful year of netball in 2024!!

Facebook: PLC Netball Club
Instagram: PLC Netball Club

Mrs Donna Watkins, PLC Netball Club President

Pacific FC

Saturday Soccer Registrations are closing soon for Prep-Year 11

Register now for the 2024 SCSSA season for girls and boys born between 2019 and 2007 who wish to join U6-U16/17 soccer teams. Teams are filling fast.

Spots still available - U6 - Prep teams, 2 spots - Years 1 & 2 - All Girls Division, 3 spots - Year 3 - All Girls Division, 4 spots - U11 Sharks (mixed), 4 spots - Marlins (mixed), 5+ spots - U14 Razors (mixed) and 4 spots - U16/17 Barracudas (mixed).

Join now:

New Players All Ages - Come and Try - Saturday 3rd Feb 8.30am-9.30am at PLC - Register here.

Games commence Saturday, March 2nd.

Contact: The Registrar
Facebook: Pacific Soccer FC 

Mrs Rita Williams, Pacific FC President

Upcoming Dates


1         Year 3-6 Swimming Carnival

2         Year 8 Camp Returns

5         Year 9 Rite Journey Departure (5.00pm)

5         7-12 SCISSA Sports Starts

6         Year 10 Information Evening (6.00pm)

9         Music Camp Departs (3.30pm)

14       Year 7-12 Interhouse Swimming Carnival

20       Friends of Pacific AGM (6.30pm)

22       Year 6 Leadership day

22       9-19 Years District Swimming

22       Year 7-12 Voices on the Coast

23       Year 4-6 Voices on the Coast

26       Year 4-6 SCISSA Training (3.15pm – 4.15pm)

29       Year 10 Vaccinations