15 May 2019

LitFest 2019

Last week, the 9th biennial Literature Festival (LitFest) was held at Newington College. Aimed at encouraging young people to take part in the adventure of books and reading, the Festival was held over three days to give students the opportunity to attend sessions covering all aspects of the written, spoken, printed and visual ‘word’. The Festival featured many special guests: authors, poets, illustrators, performers and newsmakers.

Mentored by freelance reporter, Jack Lynch, and English Teacher, Ms Lily Young, the Postscript team worked hard to meet deadlines, write reviews, interview authors, and photograph the highlights of each day. The student publication was crafted by the following students:

  • Rueben Agius (10/JN)
  • Henry Armstrong-Bailey (10/LE)
  • Anthony Cammaroto (10/MO)
  • Will Cordwell (10/ME)
  • James Davison (10/MA)
  • Thomas Foster (10/ME)
  • Aiden Garey (10/JN)
  • Sebastian Hailwood (10/JN)
  • James Lucas (10/MO)
  • Angus Montrose (10/MA)
  • Noah Morgan (10/KL)
  • Daniel Skontos (10/FL)
  • Raffy Talbot (10/KL)
  • Ben Wainman (10/FL)
  • Zach Zoud (10/ME)

And student photography volunteers: Calum Boland (11/PR), Oscar Hogg (11/JN), Dhruv Kumar (11/JN), and Thomas Gwynne (11/KL).

Please click on the links below to view the Postscript from each day.

Postscript 8 May

Postscript 9 May

Postscript 10 May

Special thanks to the LitFest Committee for planning a fantastic three days:

  • Ann Jagger – Senior Library, Teacher Librarian (Festival Coordinator)
  • Sabine Tanase – Senior Library (Assistant Festival Coordinator)
  • Joanne Barnes – Librarian, Wyvern House (Wyvern Festival Coordinator)
  • Kylie Bain – Teacher Librarian, Lindfield Prep (Lindfield Festival Coordinator)
  • Annie Markey – Director of Communications
  • Linda Munns-Conry – Head of Library
  • Richard Wheeldon – Head of English
  • Tamara Smith – Head of Drama
  • Terence Priester – English Teacher, ICT Facilitator

‘What really matters?’

Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. Mark 7:24-25

What are the things in life that we can’t live without? Bees pollinate 70% of all crop species that feed 90% of the world. In addition, they produce an estimated $30 billion dollars in honey annually. Should bees be wiped out, the world may lose all plants that bees pollinate, all animals that consume those plants and so on up the food chain. Albert Einstein was quoted as suggesting that if bees disappeared from the face of the Earth, man would have no more than four years to live. This theory has never been proven, but one thing for sure, we wouldn’t have apples, berries, avocados, mangoes, peaches, plums, nectarines, most nuts, apricots, watermelon, coconut, grapes and many other crops, where the pollination of a bee is essential.

I wonder what other things in life are essential, such that they form the building block of life itself. Obviously water, oxygen, gravity, sunlight and many more aspects in life. Yet if we apply this same logic to our mental health and general well-being, in terms of the right balance of certain abstract foundations in our life, we may find that our lives are lacking the sturdiness necessary to cope with inevitable challenges that we will experience.

The parable in Matthew 7:24-27 passage highlights two people who decided to build their house on two very different foundations. I wonder why this one man decided to build his house on the sand? Easier perhaps. After all, there’d be less effort involved because the foundations were soft; however, when the challenges came for this man, it all fell apart. The message in the story is simply that proper foundations are necessary. One man was considered wise because of the foundation he built on and the other was considered foolish. One weathered the challenges while the other collapsed under pressure. The parable questions the significance of building on sturdy foundations.

During chapel throughout the rest of the term, the students are going to be looking at the abstract, yet essential foundations of love, joy, hope and peace. Like bees, such crucial factors in our lives often go unnoticed or taken for granted, yet when we think of how important they are in building relationships creating strong communities and so on, we can then value and consider how to best build upon these lasting foundations.

Rev. Geordie Barham 
College Chaplain

Careers Expo 2019

Three Careers events will take place on Tuesday 4 June. Year 10,11 and 12 boys and parents are invited to attend. 

  • 5.45pm – 7.30pm – P&F Careers Expo in Centenary Hall
  • 6.30pm – 8.30pm – ONU Careers Advice Evening in Tupou College Centre
  • 6.45pm – 7.30pm – Tertiary Applications Seminar in the Old Boys’ Lecture Theatre


Sport report

Congratulations to Rohan Wood (12/PR) who was a member of the recent NSW All School baseball team that won the National Championships in Victoria earlier this month.

The NSW CIS basketball trials were held earlier this week, congratulations to Ben Gill (12/PR) who has made the team for 2019 and Angus Ole (10/PR) selected as a reserve.

Hugh Harvey (9/MA) has recently competed in a series of cycling events in Canberra, in a gruelling weekend of competition which included an individual time trial and a road race. Hugh came away with an overall classification of 3rd, well done Hugh on your achievement.

Congratulations to Ellis Khu (8/JN) who recently competed in the NSW diving All Schools Championships and placed 1st in his age group. Ellis has been selected to represent NSW in the Diving School Sport Australia Championships in Term 3.

Jett Leong (9/ME) was a member of the NSW U15 Hockey team that participated at the recent National Championships. Jett came away with a silver medal after going down to Western Australia in the final 2-1. Congratulations Jett on a wonderful tournament.

Eric Tripathi (11/JN) recently placed 5th at the NSW State Age Championships. Eric won six out of seven matches playing in the 16 and under age group. A great achievement for his persistence and hard work in 2019.

Justin Dong (9/MA) has continued his rise as a premier tennis player reaching the final of the 14’s boys singles and 14’s boys doubles at the recent Australian National Titles. Justin competed against the top 32 players from around Australia at the clay court championships in Canberra. He is now ranked inside the top 10 players in Australia for his age and second in NSW. Justin has set his sights on gaining his first points on the world junior rankings.

Water Polo 
Congratulations to Newington water polo players Toby Goldschmidt (11/KL), Andrej Grgurevic (10/FL) and Grayson Richardson (11/KL) who have been selected in the NSW CIS water polo team to compete at the Australian All Schools championships.

Rugby Knowledge and Wisdom Required 
Each home weekend, Newington hosts 25-30 games of Rugby all requiring a referee. If you are a frustrated ex-player, ex-coach or believe you have the ability to manage a free-flowing game of school boy rugby then we would love to hear from you. All expressions of interest can be forwarded to Mr Rod Bosman rbosman@newington.nsw.edu.au

From 1869: a new exhibition

This year we celebrate the 150th anniversary of the start of Cadets, Rugby and Rifle Shooting at Newington — all started at the College’s first home at Silverwater in 1869.

A new exhibition — From 1869: The Early Decades of Cadets, Rugby and Rifle Shooting, from the heritage collections of Newington College — is one of the ways in which we are marking this anniversary.

Who was Joseph Coates and why was he pivotal in the developments of 1869? Who were the ‘Rifles’ and the ‘Carbines’ and why? How was Rugby celebrated in verse in the final decades of the 19th century? Who were our ‘shooting stars’ early in the 20th century?

Come and explore these and other stories from the early decades of these great Newington institutions.

From 1869 is open every weekday from 9am to 4 pm in the Chaplain Peter Swain Archives Exhibition Room on Level 2 of the Founders Building, and at other times by arrangement.

David Roberts
College Archivist

2019 Swimming report

Congratulations to all the swimmers who have been competing over the last two months. Three major meets have been swum since the GPS season concluded and a group of Newington swimmers have achieved great results. The 2019 Australian National Age Championships were held in South Australia from 15-22 April 2019. In total, seven Newington Swimmers competed. The NSW CIS Championships were held at Sydney Olympic Park on 2-3 May with 18 boys representing GPS. The NSW All Schools Championships were also held at Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre on Monday 13 May. Needless to say, it is an amazing achievement for each individual to first qualify for any of these three top-end meets.

Australian National Age Championships

Seven swimmers represented their local clubs at the 2019 Australian National Age Championships in Adelaide during the first week of the school holidays.

  • Christopher Mina (10/PR) (200m Butterfly, 400m IM, 200m IM, 100m Butterfly)
  • Harrison Loeffler (9/ME) (100m Butterfly, 100m Freestyle, 50m Freestyle)
  • Lachlan Sheehy (12/JN) (200m Freestyle, 800m Freestyle, 400m Freestyle)
  • Charles Dillon (11/FL) (200m Breaststroke, 100m Breaststroke)
  • Thomas Baird (10/FL) (50m Freestyle)
  • Karl Kovarik (10/LE) (100m Freestyle, 50m Freestyle)
  • William Gray (10/KL) (400m Freestyle)

It is important to note that within each of these events qualifying times set are based on accepting the top 30 swimmers within all of Australia!

A number of the swimmers have commented on the differences between racing at Nationals and competing at the GPS meets. ‘Sitting in the marshalling area at GPS and Nationals is very similar but also very different, shared Will Gray, ‘the combination of nerves and excitement creates an intensity that I’ve never experienced before. At GPS carnivals there is a level of excitement and eagerness to race, but Nationals is a new level.’

Christopher Mina offered up a different perspective, perhaps due to his previous experience in racing, ‘the marshalling area always feels the same as I like to think of each meet as the same as all the previous ones, just with a different name.’

Many of the boys listed above swam personal best times at the Nationals and are working hard to ensure the Newington Swim Team continues its success in 2020.

Charlie Dillon, Harrison Loeffler, Christopher Mina x 3, Lachlan Sheehy x 2 all achieved times which ranked them in the top 25 swimmers in Australia in their respective events.

Harrison Loeffler summarised his participation very positively ‘I was happy with my results at Nationals as I swam personal best times in two of my events and I swam close to my personal best in the 50m Butterfly.’

Ryan Moar
Director of Aquatics
Jared Goldthorpe
Head Swimming Coach

Banner Photo by Jason McCawley/SPA Images

Concerto Competitions 2019

The Junior and Senior Concerto Competitions were held last week over two nights. Results are as follows:

Junior Concerto

  • First place: Matthew Tan (8/MO) and Aiden Love (9/PR)
  • Second place: Preston Zhang (7/LE)
  • Third place: Finlay FitzSimons (7/PR)
  • Commendation to: Ethan Kim (7/MO) and Brentson Lew (7/PR)

Senior Concerto

  • First place: Andrew Wang (12/LE) and Gabriel Haslam (12/KL)
  • Second place: Kevin Wang (11/MA) and Hugh Matthews (10/JN)
  • Third place: Joshua Roncolato (12/LE)
  • Commendation to: Christian McLoughlin (11/JN)Zach Razaleigh (11/PR)Spencer Hattersley (10/LE), Callum Stewart (12/MA) and Andrew Xie (12/PR)

Congratulations to all boys who took part!

From the Nurse


Scoliosis is the name given to a condition that causes the spine to curve sideways.


In most cases, the cause is unknown or idiopathic but there may be a family history of scoliosis.

Some rarer forms of scoliosis may be present from birth and some are caused by conditions affecting the muscles and nerves, such as cerebral palsy.

One known cause is uneven leg length causing the hips to tilt and the shoulders curve the opposite way to compensate.

Poor posture, a soft mattress or carrying heavy backpacks does not cause scoliosis.

Signs and symptoms

Idiopathic Scoliosis (unknown cause) is more likely to occur during a growth spurt between the ages 10-18 years.

  • One shoulder tilted down towards a raised hip
  • Protruding shoulder blade on one side
  • Uneven waistline
  • Ribs more prominent on one side
  • The head is slightly tilted









Most cases are mild and the person experiences no symptoms and requires no medical treatment. If the scoliosis is more severe and the curve worsens as years go by symptoms of back pain, breathing difficulties if the rib cage is compressed, problems with pregnancy and physical disability can occur later in life.     

The Forward Bending Test is a simple way to check for Idiopathic Scoliosis.

The recommended age for testing boys is 14 years and girls 10-12 years.

  1. Stand with feet together and parallel.
  2. Place palms of hands together with arms straight.
  3. Bend forward towards feet with fingertips pointing between the big toes.

Here the right upper back is more prominent and requires further assessment.

The GP will order an X-ray and the angles of the curve are measured. Regular medical checks and X-rays are done to see if the curve is worsening. A referral to a Spine Specialist would be organised if needed.

Treatment in adolescents

Scoliosis, which requires treatment, is far less common in boys than in girls. In fact 90% of patients in scoliosis clinics are adolescent girls.

Minor curves of < 25 degrees are not treated and are observed usually at four month intervals.

For those curves greater than this, particularly if they start to increase during a growth spurt, a brace is fitted and worn often for 23 hours a day, for 12-18 months. Braces help control a curve but cannot cure scoliosis. Teens can be worried about body image, self-esteem and teasing from others. They need lots of support, along with good education about their condition to help them manage.

For severe cases surgery may be recommended (one per thousand cases). This involves internal fixation of the spine to correct the curve.

Sister Margaret Bates 
School Nurse


Better health Channel

Scoliosis Australia 

Charity Rock Concert

The Charity Rock Concert held on Monday 8 April truly exceeded expectations, raising an amazing $1,258. With over 100 tickets sold, the Drama Theatre was nearly full, providing a great audience for the boys to perform for. Opening the show with Y12 band, Captain Thunderbolt, the audience were immediately overwhelmed by the musical talent on display, a sensation that continued throughout the whole show. Specific highlights included listening to Caleb Strawbridge (9/MA) and his amazing rock voice, made even more impressive seeing as he is only in Y9, Mr Paton’s fantastic recreation of Robert Plant’s vocal, despite losing his voice the night before, as well as the audience clapping along to Charlie’s Angel’s rendition of ‘Kids’. It really was a night worth coming to and the money raised will serve as a great contribution to The Black Dog Institute, helping those with mental illness.

A special thanks goes out to everyone involved in the organisation of this great event, particularly Mr Mee, Mr Paton, Ms Smith, Ben Collinge (ON 2014) and Daniel Baykitch (ON 2018). This never could have happened without them.

Charlie Timpson (12/JN)
Contemporary Music Captain

Year 7 Mother and Son Dinner

On Tuesday 26 March, Newington College held its annual Year 7 Mother and Son Dinner with more than 340 year 7 students, mums and teachers in attendance. It is a night where the bond between mother and son is celebrated and valued. The event was held at Le Montage in Lilyfield and was a great success with exceptional food and fabulous service. The night began with canapés on the terrace overlooking Iron Cove Bay. 

It was a very special night with many memorable moments. The boys acted like true young gentlemen: introducing their mothers to their friends; following the etiquette of a formal dinner; and inviting their mums for a slow dance on the dance floor.

The Year 7 Mother and Son dinner is also a great opportunity for parents to meet the boys and mothers in their son’s mentor group providing a lovely opportunity for connections to be made.

The guests of honour for the evening were Deputy Senior Prefect Jack Walker (12/KL) and his mother, Maryann Walker. It was particularly fitting this year to have Ted Walker (7/KL) in year 7, listening attentively to his big brother who spoke so beautifully to the boys about the important bond between mother and son and how it should be appreciated and celebrated. There were not many dry eyes in the room by the end of his talk.

The evening was made particularly special with the presence of Colleen Scalone, and all the Year 7 mentors who gave up their time to be with the year 7 mothers and sons. Colleen deserves special thanks for all her behind-the-scenes management and her particularly her trivia quiz which was hotly contested on the night.

The event was hosted by New Women, a support group of the Newington P&F, and was only possible with the work of a team of volunteers led by Kathy Walsh and Christina Cleaver. More than $2,500 was raised through a raffle on the night and all proceeds will go to the ELC/Crèche at Macleay Vocational College. The raffle prizes were kindly donated by Midford ($500 worth of uniform vouchers).

Helen Graham
President New Women