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06 June 2014

From the Principal

Dear Parents, Friends, staff and students

This week Elizabeth Khoury from Year 9 became Student Principal for the Day. Elizabeth was chosen after voting from her peers in Year 9 and nominations from staff. She displayed many of the qualities of leadership as she navigated the many meetings and decisions. Below is the newsletter article written as Principal of the Day by this articulate young woman.

From the Student Principal for the Day, Elizabeth Khoury


Lizzie Khoury 2014 Student Principal for the Day

What would you do as a Principal for a day? I’m sure if given the opportunity to experience a day in the shoes of Mrs Pearson or acting Principal Ms Duncan, it would not be what you expected. As a student, I saw the Principal as a leader and figure head for the College, but the job is more demanding than I originally thought. Through participating in the Student Principal for a Day program I gained valuable insight into the meetings, the mail, the task of being a principal, and the staffroom conversation.

Seeing only a portion of the duties and responsibilities that come with the job was enough to overwhelm me, but also to help me comprehend how important the role of a principal is. The smallest and largest of issues go through the Principal and is dealt with in a thoughtful manner. One of the most important lessons I can take away from my experience as Student Principal, is that forethought is the most vital part of the decision making process for a leader. As Principal, decisions, short or long term, have consequences that need to be addressed and evaluated when considering the proposal put forward. Only then when all options and ramifications of the decision have been weighed can a leader decide their community would benefit from change. I can now begin to understand why a principal needs to possess a range of qualities that allow their leadership position and decisions to be respected and effective.

In the wake of the Athletics Carnival on Monday 2 June, I would like to acknowledge the effort made by staff and students on the day. The participation in the Carnival from students and teachers was excellent and the event would not have been possible without the fantastic organisational skills of the staff.


Student Principal for a Day - classroom visits

As Student Principal I thought it would be appropriate to bring forward a current issue facing the world and women of today. Through my own personal passion and strong advocacy for women’s rights and bullying prevention at the College, I feel strongly about the protection and respect of young women. In general respect for our peers and gender equality is something I value and try to inspire in others. It is also important to be conscious of our peers, as we only see the front they display at school or in the workplace. Recognising the fact that we may not see a difficult home or family life is an important step in the thinking process that can prevent bullying. In acknowledging young girls working for a better future and the generations before them of mothers and grandmothers who did not have the rights of women today, I would like to share this poem to reflect on:

Power to that woman that didn't give up on love after being
Ill treated
Called names
and never appreciated 

Power to that woman
that loved even though she had never felt loved
To that woman that cared when she was never cared for
When betrayal and hate filled her heart with rage
Poisoned and bitter, she still loved anyhow

Power to that woman, for she is strong
Power to that woman for being a woman
Power to the women
Power to the women!

Excerpt from Power to the Women by Solomen Kobela

Elizabeth Khoury
Student Principal for a Day


Ms Jackie Duncan
Acting Principal

Beyond Bennies - 7.15am Tuesday 17 June

Beyond Bennies is an annual breakfast event sponsored by MSBESA (MSB ex-student association) for our ex-students to share their career journeys with our current students and their families.

RSVP here

Mission News

This Sunday we celebrate the feast of Pentecost. This day recalls the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the disciples and their transformation into passionate advocates for the Gospel. Pentecost has often been referred to as the “birthday” of the Church because it marks the occasion when the followers of Jesus stepped out from their seclusion and began to proclaim the Gospel. The sense of the Spirit as a force that drives us into action and leads us to reach out to others is something that resonates deeply with the charism of our Good Samaritan Sisters and therefore with the culture and ethos of our College.

We strive constantly to be people who reach out to others and we structure into College life many opportunities to remind us of our responsibility to reach out to others. Most recently our work in our One World Week has been a powerful impetus in this area. In conjunction with this focus a number of our College Choir will be performing at the Queen Victoria Building in the city next Wednesday as part of a campaign by Religious groups to seek changes to the policies that lead to children being detained in immigration detention centres. There are currently over 1000 children in such circumstances in Australian run detention centres, a situation which is clearly contrary to the ethos we espouse. While this group of vocalists will be lending their voices to the call for freedom, some of our senior students are encouraging MSB students to donate baby dolls to contribute to an artwork which is part of the protest campaign. More details of the campaign can be found here.

Pentecost is also frequently used as a focus for the movement towards unity among Christian Churches known as Ecumenism. Ecumenism does not seek to eradicate all differences among Christian denominations but rather to enter into dialogue which leads to greater understanding and respect for one another and also to work cooperatively in areas where there was significant common ground. At MSB we study the main characteristics of different denominations in Year 10 and also in aspects of our Studies of Religion courses in Year 11 and Year 12. It is clear that while there are differences, the similarities and common beliefs and practices are far more significant.

As we approach the end of term a number of significant activities are scheduled to take place. One such event is a fundraising dinner being organised by our Philippines Immersion Team. This group of staff and students will travel to the Philippines in December and connect with a range of communities working among the poor of the Philippines. Among these are our own Sisters of the Good Samaritan at Bacolod. The Philippines Immersion Team have committed to raising $1,000 per person to take as contributions to these communities. All monies raised will go directly to support these partner communities. The costs of the trip are met fully by the students and their families. We would love to see lots of students and their families coming along to support this dinner which will be held on Tuesday 17 June at the Eastern City Chinese Restaurant, Pennant Hills from 7.00pm. To book your place please click here.

Two weeks from now our community will come together for the celebration of our College Feast Day – Mount St Benedict Day. Our day will begin with Eucharist for the Feast of St Benedict and continue with a day’s activities organised by our student leaders, culminating in our popular student talent quest. Fr Paul Durkin, Pastor of St Agatha’s at Pennant Hills will join us for Eucharist and we are hopeful that some parents and other members of our community will be able to join us for Eucharist and morning tea afterwards as our recently refurbished and extended hall now allows us the opportunity to accommodate extra people on these significant occasions.

We would therefore like to extend a warm invitation to members of our extended Mount St Benedict Community to join us for Eucharist and afterwards for some morning tea. Eucharist will commence at approximately 9.15am, guests are asked to be seated by 9.00am. Morning tea will follow between 10.30am and 11.00am. To ensure we have adequate seating in place and to assist us with catering for morning tea we ask that guests RSVP through the College website by Monday 16 June. Please click here to RSVP.

College News

MSB contest the annual Da Vinci Decathlon

After two terms of preparation each Friday lunch, four MSB teams travelled to Knox to contest the annual da Vinci decathlon. The girls participated with intelligence and enthusiasm in ten academically rigorous events ranging from Creative Producers, Philosophy, Art, Poetry, Mathematics, English, Science, Cartography, Code Breaking and Games of Strategy. The students puzzled over the challenges and the spelling words such as perplexity, discombobulation, pandemonium, ataxia and imbroglio.


With over 1000 competitors and the topic Mayhem and Mystery the stakes were high. Many thanks to Mrs Mason and Ms Collins Pope who supported the girls throughout the training and competition. Congratulations to all 63 girls who participated in the training teams trialling for the eight positions in each year group. Year 7 placed second in Philosophy. The girls have stretched their minds and strengthened their collaborative skills while developing firm friendships with their intellectual peers.

Mrs Liz Dirckze
Coordinator of Teaching and Learning


For your diary - Term Dates 2014

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


Study Skills Tip for June - Having Set Times for School Work

Many students when they come home from school end up just waiting until they might ‘feel’ like doing school work. Or else they drag the work out over the whole night. A much better way to work is each night have set allocated times for school work, two - three half hour blocks. During this time students should do homework first, then work on any assignments or upcoming tests, then use the rest of the time allocated for school work to independent learning activities. All distractions should be removed during this time, so students learn to focus for 20-30 minute blocks of time.

Some of the benefits for students of having set times allocated for school work are:

  • You are more likely to do the work if you know when to start and when to end.

  • You will be more effective when you remove distractions and learn to focus for 20-30 minute blocks.

  • In all the times NOT allocated to school work you can do whatever you like without feeling guilty about it.

  • Having set times stops arguments between students and parents as everyone has agreed when the timeslots allocated to students will be.

  • You know that you are definitely doing enough work for school.

  • Keeping school work and personal life separate means you will be able to manage all of the distractions in your life and still complete your work for school.

Learn more this year about how to improve your results and be more efficient and effective with your school work by working through the units on You can also print a sheet outlining independent learning activities (click on the More menu then on Things to Print). Our school’s access details are:

Username: formsbenonly
Password: 124results

Mrs Gabrielle Keats
Studies Coordinator


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


The College is seeking donations of items for the 2014 Immersion Trip Fundraising Dinner Silent Auction.

If you can assist please contact Mrs Donna Dempsey or telephone 9980 0414.

For your diary - Term Dates 2015

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

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. Please ensure any photos supplied have permission to be published.


NSW CCC Website:

Wet Weather Line: 9990 3633


Representative Sports Calendar - Term Two



BROKEN BAY Championships
Wed 11 June (wet weather backup Wed 18 June)
MSB U13 & MSB U15 Representative Teams

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



NSW CCC Championships
Fri 13 June 
Broken Bay Representative Team



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

Representative Sports Dates Next Week

  • Tuesday 10 June Open Soccer training (Paul Wade)

  • Thursday 12 June Senior Rep Basketball Training (Mr Young) Convent Courts

  • Thursday 12 June Year 9/10 Rep Touch Training after school 3.30pm - 4.15pm (Mrs Hickey)

  • Thursday 12 Intermediate Netball Training (Mrs Rowland) Hall

  • Thursday 12 June Open Netball Training (Mrs McGregor) Hall

MSB Representative Athletics Team

Sign up sheets for the hurdles and walk events that are not held at the MSB Athletics Carnival but will be contested at the Broken Bay Championships are now on the Sports Noticeboard. Nominations will close on Tuesday 10 June and evidence of nomination times must also be received by Mrs Grant by this deadline (eg a photocopy of a Little A’s time or a print out from a website).

Successful girls will be notified at the end of next week.

A draft MSB Athletics Team is now also on the Sports Noticeboard and is available here for download. 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 June.

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

Good Luck

  • To our U15 and U13 Representative Soccer teams who will be competing at the Broken Bay Championships next week.

  • To the 13 MSB runners who will compete at the NSW CCC Cross Country Championships next week at Eastern Creek.

Mrs Karen Grant
Representative Sports Coodinator / Physical Activity Cordinator

Co-curricular Sport


MSB 15s Division 1 team no. 10 and proud coach Julie Chivers celebrate the inaugural National Netball Day at Pennant Hills Park on Saturday 31 May all decked out in blue with yummy cup cakes too. This team is undefeated to date.


submitted by Petro Cloeraine, Manager



Over the next few weeks university information specifically for parents will appear in the Careers section.

Previous Weeks: UNSW, Macquarie University, Sydney University, UTS.

Next Week: Australian Catholic University

Mrs Lucy Elgood
Careers Advisor


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











Ann-Marie Corcoran

Karen Benco



Susannah Knowles

Chun Shen



Adriana Alessi-Cordoba

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 and Wednesday.


Mrs Melissa Arane
Canteen Manager