For our 35th anniversary year, our College yearbook was restructured into our five Northside values: faith, learning, excellence, character, community.

Head of Student Life, Mr Laurie Bell, shared the following message for our yearbook, through the lens of character. 

Head of Student Life

“Companies of all sorts realize that to survive in today’s volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous environment, they need leadership skills and organizational capabilities different from those that helped them succeed in the past.”

This statement was made in an article from a recent edition of Harvard Business Review. After unpacking all the different ways companies would accomplish their goals (such as collaborative problem-solving platforms and individual initiatives), I liked the way the authors closed their article by stating what they wanted as a final outcome for the future: “It’s important, therefore, that they be equipped with the relevant technical, relational, and communication skills.”

This sounds somewhat like our mission - “to make disciples educated and equipped for any future”. 

Equipping students with these skills for the uncertain future is one thing, but the ‘difference’ is that our focus, strength and goal is ‘Character through Christ’.

This year has been unique but our God has not been surprised by anything. He has gone before us. We have had great connections with other schools like Carmel College in Hong Kong, which provided a smooth technological shift to remote learning, led by the determined efforts of an amazing group of collaborative teachers. A care team was also established to make contact with the parents and the incredible technology provided meant we were able to stay connected and learn together as a community. 

There have been some wonderful benefits throughout this challenging time. There has been greater connection across sectors of the school. Our learning support aides in Senior School connecting with aides and children in Junior School will undoubtedly be beneficial in years to come. 

I believe the students have developed their resilience and self-reliance; qualities that will empower them as they continue on their journey of learning. 

Our focus this year has centred on thankfulness and kindness through Sacred Space, prompting connection despite physical isolation between students, parents and staff. Even in uncertain times we must connect, continue to build relationship across every sector of the school, 
and bless our community by pointing to Jesus.

The Year 12 cohort have thoroughly enjoyed Christian Foundations in its different form. The small group factor has led to wonderful authentic conversations. Relationships have been developed through the sharing of God’s word on a more intimate level. Another building block in the lives of our students is that their faith journey continues to grow. Our hope is that all our students and the cohort of 2020 will be guided by God’s written word and led by His Spirit.

My continued motivation is to focus on our heavenly Father and His direction in the life of our students, to give every opportunity for students to grow - whether that be through sport, chapel or community service.  The scripture I had at the beginning of this year was Psalm 92:12 – “the righteous flourish like the palm tree and grow like a cedar in Lebanon”.  My heart is that our students at Northside flourish in all they do.

Mr Laurie Bell

The above image is a preview of the 'Character' title page in the 2020 Yearbook, featuring our Year 6 PALs, who initiate learning opportunities for younger students.

"Every action, big or small, is defined by our character - and our character is defined through our relationship with Jesus Christ."