This week at College is Round Square International Week, which is about celebrating and embracing cultural diversity and the great value that brings to our community.
Starting with our International Languages Chapel Service on Monday morning and continuing throughout the week, the boys can participate in many different activities with an international flavour. The changing community of Christchurch, combined with the intentional development of our international student programme of up to 30 boys across all year levels, has seen diversity become a significant aspect of College life. One of our desired graduate outcomes is global and bicultural competence, as we want our boys to have the knowledge, skills and open-mindedness necessary to navigate our global and interconnected world. I see this as particularly important in the light of the Covid-19 pandemic and civil rights issues raised around the world, such as the Black Lives Matter movement. The worst possible outcome of our “glorious isolation” in New Zealand would be to look inward and feed a sense of xenophobia and fear. For so long rightly or wrongly perceived as a bastion of white male privilege tucked away in Canterbury, I am proud of how College is now moving forward in its attitudes to race and culture. There is no doubt this has been helped by our membership of Round Square, and the Round Square IDEALS will be a central part of our educational programme as we move toward 2025.
Among the initial planning casualties of Covid-19 were a number of social events for our boys. Shifting Evita and all winter sports to Term 3 made planning on campus events such as our Senior Ball and the Year 11 semi-formal impossible. I am very pleased that due to the efforts and support of our Parents’ Association we will now be able to host these events later in the year. I am delighted to announce the Senior Ball (for Years 12 and 13 students) will be held at the Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū on Saturday 22 August, and our Year 11 semi-formal will be held early in Term 4 at College. Details of both events will be confirmed in the next few weeks.
On Saturday 18 July College celebrated the win in our traditional rugby fixture against Christchurch Boys’ High School, bringing home the Jock Hobbs Trophy. As anticipated the game was exceptional, described by some commentators as one of the best schoolboy matches ever broadcast. My thanks to all in the community who made this match so memorable in so many ways. I thought this response from one of our Old Boys was worth sharing …
Another Old Boy alerted me that the annual fixture with Christchurch Boys’ High School was being screened live today.
What a great game, with the teams evenly matched but College securing the win with some outstanding pluck and dedication to their task. Equally fine was the captain’s post-match remarks to the interviewer where he struck just the right note by being humble in victory and deflected praise to his fellow players.
I am sure at your next assembly, the win will receive the attention it deserves, perhaps Colours being awarded etc.
I couldn’t help thinking that the words of the fifth verse of the College Song were appropriate:
“Foes know our battle cry, when, fighting for the game,
The Black-and-White may come to grief, but never come to shame:
Conquering we ring out, or losing do the same,
Or only louder still.”
You might consider a rousing rendition of the College Song at assembly; it might bring the roof down!
I am very proud to be part of a third generation Christ’s College family and that College still produces fine young Christian gentlemen.
No College Song, but great to have the win!
Staying strong, together – 2020 Annual Appeal
In recent months we have faced one of the worst pandemics of modern times, and although life has now returned to some semblance of normal, it is looking increasingly likely that there will be a nasty sting in the coronavirus tail.
Some families and communities across New Zealand may face significant hardship and the College community is no exception. It has come to our attention that a number of our families are struggling in this changed environment and, given the circumstances and current economic outlook, we know many more may be affected in the coming months.
As you may know, our Annual Appeal usually seeks support for special or unique projects. However this year, after careful consideration, we have decided to make our community – our families – the focus of our 2020 Annual Appeal.
Every boy who comes to College is valued, and we want all our boys to come to school confident of their future educational pathway, able to focus on learning and growing, to become the young men we celebrate, who go out and make a difference in the world.
Please, help us help our community.
We know you also believe in the life-changing benefits of the Christ’s College experience. This year’s donations will be used to help College help those families who are facing significant financial hardship – directly supporting them at their time of greatest need.
After we have met these families’ needs and should we be in the fortunate position of having surplus funds, any remaining gifts will be used to support future students who otherwise wouldn’t have the opportunity to attend College.
If you are in a position to help others at this time, we hope you will choose to support our Annual Appeal. Your gift will make a world of difference – helping to keep our community strong by keeping it together.
Our thanks in anticipation.