The Life Newsletter

Senior School – T2 W4 2024

Amazing Triumphs, Student Leadership, and a Load of Rubbish?

Volleyball Success

Other schools speak in hushed tones about the might of the OPAC volleyball squads – and for good reason. At the recent CSSA Gala Day (Christian Schools Sports Association of NSW consisting of 88 schools), we won the Year 7-9 competition and were runners up in the Year 10-12 competition, losing 15-17 in a tightly contested final where we had a match point. Supercoach Mr Irwin mentored both teams, ensuring they harnessed the College values of courage, collaboration and craftsmanship to produce such results. I understand that the sportsmanship and character was of the highest quality, representing the College with honour. Well done all!

Character Development – A Load of Rubbish

We are always sharing with students that life involves a series of choices, some minor and seemingly insignificant and others potential life-changing. One choice is to carefully place rubbish in the bins, something 95% of students choose to do. However, it only takes a few to leave their litter on the ground for the College to look untidy. Similarly, leaving a mess on the floor in the toilets is something only a small minority feel comfortable doing. As communicated with students, it is a reflection of their character, their human decency and respect for others in their community that they make choices for the benefit rather than detriment of others. The quintessential OPAC student is one who:

  • Chooses to be kind
  • Chooses to make their best effort (endeavour)
  • Chooses to show respect towards others and themselves

Year 12 Student Leaders

We are inviting Year 11 students to apply for the two College Captain and five Portfolio Leader positions for 2025. We are wanting students who are servant hearted, of solid character and excellent role models. The portfolios include:

  • The Leader of Learning fosters an enriching academic environment within the school, creating and supporting innovative learning strategies. They mentor peers, promote a culture of intellectual curiosity and contribute to academic excellence through activities like study clubs and enrichment programs.
  • The Leader of Student Wellbeing supports the emotional and social wellbeing of students, creating a sense of belonging and advocating for student-led initiatives. Their responsibilities include organising mental health activities, managing the ‘wellbeing wall’, assisting at Student Services, and promoting positive wellbeing at assemblies.
  • The Leader of Christian Life upholds and promotes the College’s Christian values, organising faith-based activities and facilitating spiritual growth. They lead by example in demonstrating compassion and service, and help run Senior Bible Study groups, and lead College Chapel services.
  • The Leader of Community and Culture creates an equitable school community by organising awareness campaigns and projects on social issues. They inspire peers to engage in responsible actions and lead activities during Harmony Week, raise awareness of causes, and spearhead fundraising efforts for disadvantaged communities.
  • The Leader of Houses fosters camaraderie, competition, and unity within the College’s Houses, organising activities and maintaining communication among house members. They ensure every member feels valued, organise House Captains for various activities, and work closely with the Sports Coordinator to promote house culture and sports involvement.

Why Today’s Teenagers Might Surprise You

A Maggie Dent article worth reading ‘Why Today’s Teenagers Might Surprise You’ sheds light on some of the trials and tribulations for parenting with children of this age, particularly compared to when we were their age. Some of Maggie’s take home points were:

  • Modern Adolescence Challenges: The world today is vastly different from when current parents were teens, with constant exposure to global crises and a pervasive digital environment contributing to more trauma and challenges for today’s youth.
  • Impact of Digital Algorithms: Tech companies design algorithms that prioritise negative content to keep users engaged, which can adversely affect the mental health of teens due to our inherent ‘negativity bias’. This issue requires collective action to push for changes that protect young people’s wellbeing.
  • Effective Parenting Strategies: Parents and adults should provide teens with supportive and non-judgmental listening, helping them navigate their feelings and experiences. This approach fosters a better understanding and coping mechanisms during the tumultuous adolescent years.
  • Prevalence of Mental Health Issues: A significant number of teens face mental health and relationship challenges. Despite being a normal part of adolescence, the high rates of stress and mental health issues among teens need to be addressed with appropriate support and understanding.
  • Positive Trends in Teen Behaviour: Recent research shows a significant decline in risky behaviours such as smoking, drinking, underage sex, and juvenile crime among teens, attributed to better education on potential harms and shifts in social norms.
  • Changes in Social Interaction: There’s a noticeable decline in face-to-face socialising among teens, which may contribute to reduced risky behaviour. However, this also impacts the development of essential social and emotional skills gained through direct human interaction.
  • Evolving Parenting Styles: The shift from authoritarian to more connected and respectful parenting styles has led to closer parent-teen relationships and less rebellious behaviour, ultimately reducing risky activities.
  • Teens’ Awareness and Advocacy: Today’s teens are more conscious and proactive about environmental, social and health issues. They seek inclusion in decision-making processes and demonstrate a strong desire to contribute positively to societal challenges.

God bless, 

Mr Steve Owen
Deputy Principal – Head of Senior School


Exciting Return to Sports as Term 2 MISA Season Finally Kicks Off

After a refreshing break, we had the unfortunate wet conditions that delayed the beginning of the MISA season. Fortunately for some teams, they have been able to get all rounds in, but it wasn’t until Week 4 where all our teams were able to compete.

All students in teams are expected to attend training on a weekly basis and should communicate to their coaches if they can not make the training session.

Our Week 5 & 6 fixtures are as follows:

TeamWeek 5 LocationOpponentWeek 6 LocationOpponent
Years 7 - 9 Girls BasketballOPACWACOPACMAG
Years 7 - 9 Boys BasketballMinto BasketballMASMinto BasketballJTCC
Years 7 - 9 Mixed FrisbeeNarellan Sports HubMACCNarellan Sports HubWAC
Years 11 - 12 Girls NetballNarellan Sports HubBYEMinto Netball (CT 8)
Years 7-9 Boys HockeyNarellan HockeyJTCCNarellan HockeyWCCS
Years 10 - 12 Boys SoftballCowpasture Reserve (Field 5)SBCCCowpasture Reserve (Field 10)MAS
Years 10 -12 Girls Indoor CricketAll SportsJTCCAll SportsTHAC
Years 10 -12 Girls SoccerBelgenny ReserveWACDoohanBYE
Years 11 -12 Boys SoccerDoohanSFCCDoohanMAS

Celebrating our Cross Country

Back in Week 1 of this term we held the SS OPAC Cross Country event. The competitors only event was held here at OPAC and was a fantastic day of witnessing our students achieve their best efforts across various distances around our College premises. Students who achieved a place in the top 4 for their age group have qualified for the CSSA State Cross Country championships which will happen on Friday 31 May at the Sydney International Equestrian Centre. Notifications to parents should be coming out shortly.

Congratulations to the following students who finished first in their age group and have won the Age Champion title for 2024:




Tahlia C

12 Years

Joel R

Minnie-Mae G

13 Years

Andrew V

Lila D

14 Years

Cooper G

Claire G

15 Years

Nathan B

Indie W

16 Years

Riley F

Emily B

17 Years

Andrew T


18 Years

Jonah B

Celebrating our Volleyball teams:

During Week 3, we sent our Open’s and 15&U mixed gender teams to compete in the CSSA State Volleyball Championship. Both teams exemplified exceptional sportsmanship and excellence, ultimately advancing to their respective finals.

In the end, our Open’s lost their final in a close battle to Dubbo CS, but lost with humility and grace, supporting the winning team and reflecting positively on OPAC. Our 15&U team demonstrated persistence and excellent teamwork which eventually led to them winning the Championship, claiming the CSSA State Volleyball title. Well done to all these students on their success and thank you Mr Irwin for your commitment, sacrifice and investment into these teams.

Stay Updated with Sporting Opportunities

To ensure students don’t miss any future sporting opportunities, it is vital for them to regularly check their emails and utilise “Clipboard”. All upcoming events and trials will be communicated through email. Keep an eye out for the trials for the CSSA Zone Basketball Gala day, CSSA Netball Gala day (where we might have our first boys division) & Ultimate Frisbee gala day. Students will also have the opportunity to express their interest in being selected for the upcoming MISA golf championships.

God Bless, 

Mr Christopher Cranston

Head of PDHPE and Sport