Thank you 2020 College Captain Jack Berry for his powerful speech at our recent Open Day. 

Thank you for welcoming our prospective families and giving them an insight into life as a student at St Augustine’s College.  We have had some wonderful feedback from our visitors about your speech, along with how impressed they were with experiencing our school in action and meeting our staff and students.

Good evening and welcome parents, boys and girls. Welcome to those who have been here before and those visiting us at

St Augustine’s College for the first time. My name is Jack Berry and I am the College Captain for 2020, an honour which I have worked towards  since I was in Year 7, to lead a school of opportunity and community.

I remember 11 year old Jack plonked somewhere in that crowd listening to a very similar speech, then walking around this school, very different to how it is today but, I was instantly in love. Now, my Mum will tell you it wasn’t just the slime I made in the science department that day, that I continually pretended to sneeze onto my dad which made me love this place, and I must say that did win me over. Although it was more than that.

Seeing the sports department the school had to offer with a gym, basketball courts, professional coaching staff and high performance programs, all of which I have been lucky to experience over the past six years and the great success we experience with the sports we have to offer, dominating the cricket, football, basketball, rugby, water polo and rowing. We have established ourselves as a force to be reckoned with on the court, the water and the field.

But where our success truly lies is in the classrooms and behind the desks. Our academic performances have only improved over the past few years and this is not a product of pushing to be the best, it is a direct consequence of having teachers who nurture and support each boy in this school to reach their potential, their personal best, in whatever subject or field that may be, whilst helping us grow into great Augustinian men.

Our community here at Saints is not exclusive to each Year Group, and through our House system and initiatives such as our Big Brother Reading Program and Bishop’s Shield, we transcend those barriers between years and help a healthy relationship between all boys’ flourish.

Now to break it down for you, we have six House Groups here at Saints of different colours, as seen on those banners with these houses being built upon different values. I’m in Reville House, or better known as the ‘best House’. And I am now $5 richer for saying that thank you Ms. Welch. In each House, every boy is split into a Tutor Group comprised of their classmates with a teacher who will oversee and nurture their growth over the course of their time here at Saints. They meet at the beginning of each day and will participate in other House specific activities together as well.

These House Groups are what form our Bishop’s Shield, an inter-house competition comprised of various activities which allow each boy to exhibit their strengths and in turn allowing everyone to have a go.

Additionally, within this House system, there is a significant focus upon wellbeing, a driving theme of our school community, helping each other to maintain a healthy and happy level of wellbeing in what can be a stressful environment.

This community is built upon three values which form the fabric of our school, intertwining itself throughout our culture. Truth, Love and Community. These values are imbued through our classes, our sports, our co-curricular and our relationships. For it is these values which embody the men we wish to become when we graduate and walk through those gates for the last time. From Year 7 to 12 it is a restless search of interiority which guides us on a path to success beyond those gates. And it is for that reason I love this school.

Mr. Byrne shared with the school an Augustinian concept at our assembly a week ago which I could like to share with you today. He discussed two paths, one the “right” path and the other the “wrong” path. And he said that it is better to be someone who limps along the right path, than to be someone who is a runner along the wrong path. But more importantly it is what he said next. At this school, we are a community who assist those limping, who band around them and carry them further, not allowing them to fall behind.

I thought this was a perfect representation of the community which flourishes here at St Augustine’s.

The opportunity on offer here is significant, the tours to China, India and Sri Lanka that I have been lucky enough to go on and experience will stay with me forever. It is not every day that a young cricketer gets to travel to a subcontinent and play the sport they love, or for a student practicing a language to travel to that country and experience that culture first hand. Those are but two of the tours on offer, there are countless others involved with languages, sports and our service program SEA (Service Education Awareness). This is an opportunity which is a once in a life time thing, something which every student who experiences it, grows from and cherishes.

I’d like to leave you with this, from a student who has been sitting in those classrooms, been running on those sporting fields, chanting in those stands and walking through that playground; your sons will find their purpose and their strengths. Whether it be in the classroom, on the court, the field or in the water, in the arts or co-curricular activities, there is something for everyone and each will help your son to reach their personal best, to achieve their own success, to grow into a young man with strong morals and a foundation of humility.

I hope you enjoy the rest of the evening and I look forward to welcoming your son into our great Augustinian community.

Thank you. 

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