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From the Principal Mission News Curriculum News College News
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From the Principal

Dear parents, friends, staff and students.

Winter seems to have finally arrived as we prepare for the last week of term next week. This week has still been very busy with the finalising of reports, Year 12 planning MSB Day at the end of next week and the continuation of valuable learning experiences within the class room.

On Tuesday evening the Year 11 Subject Selection evening for2015 occurred. Another step in the process as our Year 10 students decide what subjects they would like to continue for their senior study. Mr John Muskovits has worked hard to ensure that the students make informed choices and have every opportunity to ask questions. Thank you to the Heads of Department and teachers who ran the information sessions for the families.

The Principal’s address at the College assembly this week was given by Eizabeth Khoury from Year 9 as she completes her commitments as Student Principal of the day. Elizabeth gave an informative address as well as handing out the awards from the Athletics Carnival. The carnival on the 2nd June ran like clockwork thanks to the hard work of all the PDHPE teachers, Mrs Rebecca Lewis, Mrs Karen Grant and Mrs Gillian McGregor. They were ably assisted by all the teachers and many student helpers. It was inspiring to see the participation and College Spirit on the day. Congratulation to Terracina for being the overall champion House and to Monte Cassino who once again won the cup for participation.

On Wednesday a group of students went to the Queen Victoria Building to stand in solidarity with Mission Australia and question the wisdom of holding children in detention. Mr Paul Lentern documented in the newsletter a few weeks ago the clear connection this question has in statements from the Pope, our Bishops and the Good Samaritan Sisters. The students who went to sing made individual decisions to support the event. We are very proud of these young women who are confident to speak out and work to transform the future for others.

Next week on Tuesday morning the Beyond Bennies Breakfast is on once again. If you are wondering what a Mount St Benedict graduate can achieve, I recommend that you book in to come and listen to these four young women. We often say that our young women are confident and articulate, why not come and judge for yourself?

Let us pray together the Prayer of St Benedict.

O gracious and holy God
Give us wisdom to know you
Intelligence to understand you
Diligence to seek you
Patience to wait for you
Eyes to behold you
A heart to meditate upon you
A life to proclaim you

May we see the face of Christ in others
May we listen to others with the ear of our heart
May we be a model of welcome and peace to those we meet.

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Mission News

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Set Me Free

“Nowhere to run and hide, there’s danger in the night.

Nothing safe, no one escapes, there’s fear across the land.

No warmth around the fire, we suffer through the cold.

Mothers scream and babies cry, they’re sick and so afraid.

No hope to make a life, they take our dreams away.

This tortured land we once adored has crumbled to its knees.

We see our brothers die; our fathers disappear.

We stand in line to meet our fate, no hope of liberty.

Set me free, oh set me free. Please set me free.

Now we’re on the run cross the great divide.

Hide your faces, don’t be seen, don’t trust in anyone.

Risking certain death, plunge into the sea.

Day and night of misery, surrounded by disease.

Bodies overboard, hunger and despair.

A desperate bid for freedom if we ever make it there.

A new land in our sight, more trouble lies ahead.

Locked into a prison cell, committed not a crime.

Set me free, oh set me free. Please set me free.

Freedom! Freedom, hear my plea

Freedom! Freedom, rescue me.

Let me stay. Can’t you see that I’m afraid?

Set me free. Set me free!”

These words by composer Paul Jarman were sung by our vocal ensemble at the Queen Victoria Building on Wednesday of this week to help launch a campaign to free children from Australia’s immigration detention centres. The piece is dedicated to Salima Haidary, a young Afghani woman who was forced to flee the Taliban with some of her family and seek a safe place to live. Her journey took her through Pakistan, to Indonesia and finally Christmas Island in a perilous boat journey with 300 people crammed into a tiny boat. Like most of those who seek asylum in Australia, Salima has been recognised as a refugee under the United Nations conventions. Also, like so many others, Salima had a long and dangerous journey and was forced to wait for many months while her case was considered. The anxiety and distress associated with this process, combined with the trauma of the persecution in the home country and the ravages of the journey leave many asylum seekers severely traumatised.

There are currently over 1000 children in Australia’s immigration detention centres. Professor Gillian Triggs, President of the Australian Human Rights Commission has noted "As a matter of very clear international law children should not be detained for anything more than what is absolutely necessary for health checks and security checks.”

In keeping with our commitment to support those seeking asylum in Australia we were pleased to be able to accept the invitation to help launch this campaign. I would like to acknowledge the work of the students who volunteered and their willingness not only to attend but also to spend many of their lunch times preparing. Thank you also to Mr Peter Watters Head of Creative and Performing Arts for his work in preparing and accompanying the students along with Ms Kylie Gray our Marketing and Development Manager.

Curriculum News

From the Drama Department

On Friday 31 st May we took our Belvoir Theatre Subscription group to see Brother’s Wreck. Belvoir described the play as follows;

Mob can’t survive like that, you can’t survive like that. We gotta talk to each other, as hard as it is, ’cause I guarantee you, that phone will ring and you’ll have to say goodbye again.

This beautiful little play is about life.

It begins with a death: on a hot morning under a house in Darwin, Ruben wakes to find his cousin Joe hanging from the rafters. What follows is the story of a family, buffeted by constant tragedy, holding itself together – as their people have done generation after generation. This play asks us: how do we deal with death? And how many other people does it take for each of us to live? Little by little, Ruben’s family brings him back from the edge.

Jada Alberts hails from Australia’s top end – Larrakia, Yanuwa, Bardi and Wardaman country. She is a recipient of The Balnaves Foundation Indigenous Playwright’s Award and is a commanding voice in the new generation of Australian theatre. Acclaimed director/actor/writer Leah Purcell directs this intelligent, moving production.

The girls and I were really moved by this production as we watched a family dealing with grief and loss. As always our girls responded in a mature and thoughtful way to this play. It is a pleasure to provide extra opportunities for them to see live theatre.

Cassandra Benco of Year 11 Drama said “ The play was extremely powerful. It felt very real and the actors portrayed their characters with great confidence and emotion, allowing me as a member of the audience to appreciate and understand the struggles and issues explored as if they were my own. Our subscription to Belvoir theatre is an amazing opportunity and we are very lucky to be able to experience such influential performances.”

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Year 8 Medieval Europe History Incursion

On Wednesday, 4th June, during periods 5 and 6, Year 8 Semester 1 History Students accompanied by our teachers, attended the Medieval Europe History Incursion at the back of the College Hall.

We were introduced and greeted by our presenter, James, and his assistant, both dressed in their medieval clothes and armed with medieval equipment. The first thing James talked about was the Knights during the Medieval Age. He talked about the different names used for a ‘knight’ in different places. James then talked about how armies would go into battle with army formations. To help with his explanation and so that we could understand, James asked for eight student volunteers. The students demonstrated by each holding a shield and spear showing how armies did different formations to defend themselves during a battle situation. James explained why some of these formations would or would not work and which ones were most effective. James went on to talk about knights and their armour. The armour worn by the Knights was made out of metal thus making the armour very heavy especially when worn. We were then shown a manikin dressed in knight armour whose name was ‘Fred’.
Three volunteers were called for to wear a piece of armour. The student volunteers showed how difficult it was to move around dressed in this heavy armour.

James also talked about crime and punishment in Europe during the medieval age. We had a demonstration showing how people were punished by being placed in the stocks, the stocks was a wooden structure with holes for your hands and one for the head. As a form of punishment people were placed in these stocks for a period of time and were sometimes fed by their friends while they remained in the stocks. No doubt the people who experienced this kind of punishment would have been left feeling very sore once they were freed as it would not have been very comfortable locked in one of these stocks especially for a long period!
Next we were shown another wooden structure which was similar to the stocks but for two people to walk around in. It would be used for people who were having an argument and causing disruption on the streets. The idea was that the two people would have to work together to move around and to do it they would need to settle any grievances that they may have had between them.

Another form of punishment which was used was to place a metal helmet which had a metal mouth piece over the accused, the victim would have the mouth piece kept in his mouth until he was released needless to say this would have been very uncomfortable, cruel and unhygienic. James concluded Crime and Punishment with a hands-on with the equipment on display. We all had some fun wearing some of the armour, holding swords and admiring the weapons and spears that were on display.

Adding to the excitement James asked for a few volunteers to partake in some medieval dress.
As this was done explanation was given as to who would have worn the relevant clothing in medieval time as well as what status was held by the persons wearing the particular dress.

Our incursion soon came to a close. We thanked James and his assistant for their time and effort to support our learning. Overall, I found the incursion engaging, humorous and interesting and I am sure the rest of Year 8 History students felt the same way. Thank you to our History teachers Ms Sim, Ms Scott-Bell and Mr Hume for making the incursion possible.

Judith-Grace Vella

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History Tour Information Evening

Last Tuesday night played host to the farewell dinner & information evening for a very excited group of historians and their parents in the lead up to the History Tour which leaves on the 21 st June. The travellers were in awe as they heard from the guest speaker, Estelle Lazer, an archaeologist who has spent a great portion of her life working and studying the remains and artefacts of Pompeii where the tour will be visiting. Her stories, experiences and expertise gave a fascinating insight into the ancient world we will soon visit and we thank her for presenting on the evening. Following the guest speaker, the students, parents and teachers were treated to an Italian feast where the excitement built, questions were answered and shopping lists finalised. The night concluded with Grace Mather, from Academy Travel, providing all travellers with their documents and final discussion of the itinerary which built on the anticipation and energy for the journey ahead. Special thanks to Mrs Margot Hadfield and Mrs Susan Webber for their organisation of the dinner and especially to Mr Greg Hume for his outstanding preparation and countless hours spent in preparation for the trip ahead. We farewell the students and accompanying staff and wish them safe travels over the term break.

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College News

SRC – Willy Wonka Biggest Morning Tea

On Friday the 6th of June, the Student Representative Council (SRC) hosted a “Willy Wonka Biggest Morning Tea in support of The Skin Cancer Foundation”. Each representative, from Years 7 to 12, donated a plate of brownies, cupcakes, slices, crackles and cookies to help raise money for a worthy cause. The girls also dressed up in fancy hats to raise awareness and stress the importance of sun safety as a major strategy to prevent skin cancer. The junior SRC representatives also ran four lolly guessing competitions which were very popular amongst the students and even staff.

It was great to see students from all year groups work together for a common cause and be able to raise $1065. Congratulations to the SRC Portfolio, in particular our dedicated captains, Alexandra Skelton and Ellen Schiffler, and all the SRC Representatives for a very fun, enjoyable and successful day!

Christine Takchi
SRC Mentor

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Student Networking Alliance

On Tuesday the 6th of May, the second meeting for the Student Networking Alliance took place at Pymble Ladies College. Along with Ms Zammit, the four of us (Emily, Lizzie, Grace and Ally), the students from this college a part of the alliance, went to Pymble Ladies College. Remember the first meeting, we now knew a bit more of what to expect, and we were all so excited about being a part of what lay ahead- as well as to catch up with all the wonderful girls we had met in term one.
The meeting began with a viewing of the two-minute video each school had prepared. They focused on what made their school unique and what issues affected young women today. Through the viewing of these videos, we began to realise that amongst us girls’ schools, there are many differences and distinctive traits belonging solely to each. However, we also began to realise that each of our schools are more alike in ways we never would have imagined, and that we all really can come together to make a difference.
We were then all split into groups of about twelve, meeting and sitting with a random selection of girls from every school. Each group was given one of four topics to discuss, us MSB students falling into groups under the topics of ‘bullying’ and ‘women in the workplace.’ The discussions that took place, developing at our own pace and ideas, were inspiring, reflective and enlightening.
Within the topic of ‘bullying’, we began to talk about everything- how we think bullying differs between boys and girls, how it is present within schools, what each of our schools are doing to resolve it. We discussed how perhaps our schools could implement some of the effective systems used by other schools, what support systems are available, how we can increase awareness of this support, and ideas of how we can help to eradicate this issue altogether.
The ‘women in the workplace’ discussion also had conversations flowing, beginning with the ways in which the media often focuses only on what may be considered negative aspects of women leaders or their actions, instead of their incredible capability to stand for themselves as inspirational and powerful leaders. Importantly, it was brought up that females have oppressed and discriminated against for so long, that the derogatory terms used against us are now used as slang within everyday life. We talked about standing up for ourselves being far from the only solution, as we believe this issue needs to be taken to boys schools, who, although in minority, unfortunately may need to be taught how to behave and respect towards women.
There was presentation given by Pymble Ladies College on Domestic Abuse. The statistic that one in three women in Australia suffer from domestic abuse of some form was sorrowful and distressing, and there was a shared sense of empathy felt by everyone, with a strong desire to make change. We all need to do our part to help- this cannot continue. Education and awareness are the first steps to this change.

Once again, we gained so much from this experience. It was both shocking and pleasing to discover our similarities with other all-girls schools, and we were able to be proud of our differences. The issues we discussed were challenging but enlightening, and we all felt we were able to understand and suggest ideas that may start making changes. In next term's meeting we are going to continue our discussion of each of the issues. Our aim is to educate and make our community aware of the issues we discussed, such as Bullying, challenges women face in the workforce and Domestic Violence; further spreading the change that needs to take place.
Alexandra Dowd, Elizabeth Khoury, Grace Klauser and Emily Bray.

Footsteps of Benedict Jubilee Tour Information Evening

Thursday 17 July
College Staffroom
Come along and hear all about the upcoming Footsteps of Benedict tour to be held December 2015/January 2016.
Please confirm your attendance

Term Dates 2014

Term Two

Tuesday 29 April - Friday 20 June

Term Three

Tuesday 15 July - Friday 19 September

Term Four

Tuesday 7 October - Friday 5 December

Philippines Fundraising Dinner

7.00pm - 9.30pm
Tuesday 17 June

Eastern City Chinese Restaurant
1 Hillcrest Road
Pennant Hills

The staff and students of the 2014 Philippines Immersion Trip would like to invite you to a Dinner to raise donations for the following organisations:

  • PREDA Olongapo
  • Bahay Tulyan Manila
  • The Good Samaritan Kinder School Bacolad

Enjoy an eight course banquet (drinks available for purchase or BYO wine) for $45 per person.

There will be entertainment, a silent auction, lucky door prizes and games.

RSVP here

For further information, please contact Mrs Donna Dempsey 9980 0415 or via email ddempsey@msben.nsw.edu.au

Indigenous Immersion Trip

Over the Easter Break Year 11 MSB students Rebecca Koelmyer and Chelsea Spokes accompanied 15 students from various Good Samaritan schools in Sydney on an Indigenous Immersion Trip to Alice Springs. The experience provided the opportunity for students and teachers to immerse themselves in the Indigenous life of Santa Teresa, a community 80kms out of Alice Springs, and to experience life in Alice Springs. Below is a reflection from the students who participated in the trip.

Reflection on Santa Teresa

As participants on the 2014 Good Samaritan Immersion we left home empty, but returned with an experience, amazing friends for life, a love of card games and a new found perspective on Aboriginal life and culture, a topic that is taught so extensively at school.

Santa Teresa is an Aboriginal community located 80km South-East of Alice Springs, home to approximately 500 Eastern Arrente people. Santa Teresa is a Catholic Community established as a Mission in 1952. Sister Liz and Sister Anita of the Good Samaritan Sisters work closely and tirelessly in the community and the two sided relationship between the sisters and the community, built on trust, respect and understanding was really inspiring.

In Santa Teresa we were able to experience the Australian Indigenous culture first-hand through living in the community for 4 days. We were enriched with insight into culture and spirituality of the Arrente people whose culture continues to be practised today despite the believed notion that it is ‘dying out’. It was incredible to listen to women in the community and Sr Liz share their experiences and knowledge that no textbook could provide. We were privileged to undergo a smoking ceremony, watched in awe as the women in the Spirituality Centre practised their traditional art and gained an appreciation of our lives through assisting in the Community Centre.

The other element to the experience was Alice Springs where we took out the cameras and became tourists exploring the gorges, gaps, Royal Flying Doctors Service, Reptile Park, women’s goal and a meteorite crater. The friendships we developed with students from other Good Sam schools will stay with us forever. Away from the TV, phone reception and internet; we bonded with card games and laughs.

It was truly an experience that has provided us with the passion and understanding to work in areas of social justice in the future while creating some amazing memories in the process. We strongly recommend this trip to anyone that gets the chance.

Rebecca Koelmyer and Chelsea Spokes

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Term Dates 2015

Term One

Wednesday 28 January - Years 7, 11 and 12 return
Thursday 29 January - Years 8, 9 and 10 return

Wednesday 1 April - Term ends

Term Two

Monday 20 April - Friday 19 June

Friday 5 June - Staff Development Day
Monday 8 June - Queen's Birthday Public Holiday

Term Three

Tuesday 14 July - Friday 18 September

Term Four

Tuesday 6 October - Friday 4 December

Co-Curricular Photos

The Co-Curricular Photos will be taken on Tuesday 17 June from 9:00am on the College Oval (weather permitting). (Ex-Student, Mother/Daughter photo will be at 8:40am) Please ensure that your daughter is dressed in her full winter uniform (including blazer) and if participating in Sport Photos that she brings the appropriate attire for each photo. Please refer to the Student Planner for the guides lines on presentation of hair and no make up etc

Representative Sport

If your daughter has recently achieved outstanding sporting results please send me an email so that the College can share in her success.



NSW CCC Website:


Wet Weather Line: 9990 3633

Representative Sports Calendar - Term Two


BROKEN BAY Championships
Wed 18 June
MSB U13 & MSB U15 Representative Teams

NSW ALL SCHOOLS Championships
Mon 16- Tue 17 June
Natalie Tobin Y12


Y9/10 All Schools Hornsby Region Championships
Thu 19 June
MSB Representative Y9/10 Team


BROKEN BAY Championships
Thu 19 June
MSB Senior Representative Team

MSB Representative Athletics Team

A draft MSB Athletics Team with hurdles and walk events added is now also on the sports noticeboard (insert link here!!) . Please notify Mrs Grant immediately if you wish to withdraw from events so that the team is finalised in time for photo day on Tuesday 17 th June.

Notes for the Broken Bay championships to be held on Wednesday August 20 will be distributed next term.


Congratulations to Bella Duncan (Y10), Abi Shepherd (Y9) and Shannyn Bissett (Y8) who were members of the victorious U15 Broken Bay Team at the NSW CCC Touch Championships in Wagga last week. Abi went on to gain selection into the U15 NSW CCC Team – well done!

Congratulation also to Brittany Haskins (Y10) who was a member of the Open Broken Bay team that were runners up.

Good Luck

  • To our U15 and U13 Representative Soccer teams who will be competing at the Broken Bay Championships next week after the unfortunate postponement this week due to the rain.
  • To the MSB Y9/10 Representative Team who will compete in the NSW All Schools Regional Touch Championships next week at Mount Colah.
  • To Natalie Tobin (Y12) who will represent NSW CCC at the NSW All Schools Soccer Championships next week at Sutherland.

Co-curricular Sport





Katie Devitt





1 st

Tiarne Ekstrom



2 nd

Amie Bowrey



3 rd

Jemma Gallagher

Monte Cassino



1 st

Shannyn Bissett



Equal 2 nd

Elly Gallagher

Courtney Harkin

Monte Cassino



3 rd

Jenna Jardine




1 st

Emily Michell



2 nd

Kirsten Simpson



3 rd

Carla Takchi





Emily Michell




Tiarne Ekstrom




Shannyn Bissett




1 st

Monte Cassino


2 nd



3 rd


















Katie Devitt


14 years 200M


Jemma Gallagher

Monte Cassino

Junior 800M


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Univertisy Focus

Over the next few weeks university information specifically for parents will appear in the Careers section. This week: Australian Catholic University
Previous Weeks: UNSW, Macquarie University, Sydney University, UTS, UWS.
Next Week: University of Notre Dame


The Canteen opens daily from 8.00am to 2.00pm.

MY STUDENT ACCOUNT - Cashless Canteen

Students may order and pay for purchases with our 'cashless' option using their Student ID card.
Comprehensive instructions on how to use this system can be found here.
If you have any queries please contact Mrs Elke Forrest, Assistant Business Manager.
Place a Canteen order here







Vivienne Flannery

Kathleen Van Den Broek

Kate McGrath

Carla Savorgnan

Kylie Craig

Susan Giacomelli

Jennifer Campbell

Lisette Smith

Please notify Melissa if you are unable to attend or you would like to be removed from the roster.

Volunteers are urgently required for Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday

Mrs Melissa Arane
Canteen Manager

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Mount St Benedict College
449C Pennant Hills Road, Pennant Hills NSW 2120

Phone:  02 9980 0444
02 9484 4911

General enquiries   admin@msben.nsw.edu.au

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