16 October 2017

From the Head of Senior School

Over the past two weeks we have observed numerous examples of boys willingly accepting challenges, striving to do the best they can, working collaboratively and taking risks. There is no better example than the outstanding musical production of The Addams Family. As this is the first musical at Scotch College in over a decade, very few, if any, of the boys have ever performed in a musical before and yet the cast was large and the boys were enthusiastic and committed in their efforts. The culmination of five months of rehearsal was a superb production where every member of the cast performed with conviction, energy and character. Not only were the roles on stage performed superbly, so too were all roles back stage and front of house. I thank and congratulate all boys and staff involved in bringing to life the script and music of The Addams Family.

In the week preceding The Addams Family, all boys in the Senior School sang in their respective House Choir in the Inter-House singing competition. All Houses sang with full voice, choreographed entertaining routines and appeared to enjoy their time on stage. I am sure for some boys singing on stage in front of the Senior School brings with it feelings of apprehension, nervousness and self-consciousness and yet they did it! The final of the Inter-House singing competition will be held during this week's assembly when Alexander, Keys and Ross compete for the coveted trophy.

At last week's assembly we listened to two inspiring speeches. The first was from Nathan Schaff (Year 11, Anderson) who shared his community service project with us. Nathan, under the guidance of Akram Azimi, Young Australian of the Year 2013, presented at a national medical conference and was interviewed on radio about the global problem of open defecation. As Nathan told us all at the assembly, "Our self-worth comes from things we give, from the way we are of value to others, not from the things we have been given".

The second speech was from Asad Hosseini (Year 12, St Andrews) who shared just part of his life story as a refugee. It was humbling and thought provoking and his strength of character was inspiring. Asad delivered his speech during the national Refugee Week (19-25 June). One of the aims of Refugee Week is to raise awareness about the issues facing refugees and celebrates the contributions refugees make to Australian society. This year's theme, 'With courage let us all combine' comes from the second verse of the Australian national anthem.

Asad raised awareness through his own story and he, together with Akram Azimi who was in the audience to support Nathan Schaff, highlight the skills and energy they bring to their new home. Scotch College is much richer for the wonderful contribution Asad and Akram make to the school community. I encourage you to take ten minutes to watch Asad's speech via the link: https://gallery.plcscotch.wa.edu.au/?r=72702.

I have often had parents remark that had they known a speech, performance or presentation was going to be featured at the Senior School assembly they would have made time in their busy day to attend. Following the suggestion from a Year 12 parent, we now include a brief outline of each assembly on the Daily Notices that can be accessed via the home.scotch webpage, by clicking on Daily Notices.

Finally, I thank all boys, staff and parents for your wonderful contributions over the past term. Enjoy a well-earned mid-year break.

Dr Rob McEwan

Head of Senior School