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A number of students participated in the Oaktree

Foundation’s Live below the Line andWorld Vision’s

40-Hour Famine, raising in excess of $6000 for

malnourished children in Rwanda. The Senior School also

celebrated Community Awareness Day in March and

August, contributing over $9000 to Destiny Rescue, St

Paul’s College for disabled children, One Girl and the

Collingwood Language School. Ruyton’s notable fairy floss

stall at the Xavier May Time Fair also donated in excess of

$2000 to the Jesuit Mission.

The children from Andale and Bulleen Heights schools were

once again delighted to visit Ruyton for their annual

Christmas party, where, alongside their Year 10 mentors,

they participated in a workshop by Bubble Media, followed

by a picnic lunch, strengthening the relationship we have

with these schools. This event facilitated the development

of Ruyton students’ skills in communicating with children

with learning and language disorders, autism spectrum

disorder and children with difficulties with fine or gross

motor skills and visual perception.

We have witnessed many thought-provoking presentations,

including one by our very own, Mrs Janine Power, who

works closely with Destiny Rescue. A Youth Ambassador for

World Vision, Mr David French-Mullen enlightened us about

his transformative visit to Rwanda and his quest to end

global hunger. In addition, an Old Ruytonian, Ms Anna

Richardson, spoke about her voluntary work as Human

Resources Manager for the School of St Jude in Tanzania.

These inspirational presentations revealed to our students

the benefits of life-long community service. I extend my

thanks to all in the community who have supported our

endeavours this year.

Ms Maria Di Vitto,

Community Service Co-ordinator


There is a line from a Paul Kelly song,

‘Don’t start me talking

or I’ll have it all my way’

and, I have to admit, it’s the tune

that I hear in my head every time I am with our Ruyton

students whenever they debate.

This year our intake of new debaters was excellent, with

over 30 girls joining our squad from Year 8. These new girls,

along with our experienced debaters, were outstanding,

even managing to set a new benchmark, with nine out of

13 teams winning in Round One. The other very promising

feature was that a broad range of students won Best

Speaker awards across the five debating rounds.

The other impressive accomplishment that must be

recognised is that of one Year 10 girl who won the 2015

Swannie Award for the Hawthorn region. This award is

conferred by the Debating Association of Victoria and

recognises speakers who have excelled in their division.

Given that the standard of talent in our Hawthorn

competition is so high, this is a truly wonderful

achievement for all of Ruyton, let alone for the student


As a group, these girls are excellent and, thanks to the

Senior girls, the collegiality improves every year. In

particular, it is important to acknowledge the indefatigable

work of our 2014 Debating Captain, Deanne Xu who worked

with amazing enthusiasm to encourage, support and

nurture the girls.

Deanne was ably assisted by our Debating Level Leaders,

Years 8-11. These students took their responsibilities

seriously, demonstrating their sincere commitment to

debating at Ruyton. Indeed, I would like to thank everyone

who has supported us throughout the season.

The leadership opportunities we have in place mean that

we are building depth in the squad, enabling girls to find

their voices in a very supportive environment. This year,

Deanne organised more practice debates for the new girls

as well as ensuring several Year 11 students coached and

mentored new teams. Our aim is to continue to grow this

aspect of the activity, as it is rewarding for both the teams

and the mentors.

I am sure that our 2015 Debating and Forums Captain,

Laura Marshall, will dedicate herself to building on the

great work of her predecessors. Laura has been a wonderful

team player throughout her years of debating at Ruyton

and I very much look forward to working alongside her.

Despite the exacting nature of debating - the need to

research a topic; to consider the counter-arguments; to

organise one’s content and the ability to articulate one’s

position both clearly and persuasively it is also an activity

that is great fun. Our Preparation nights are full of energy

(that’s even before the hot chips come) and win or lose,

each girl leaves a Debating Round at Scotch College smiling.

While it is true that you don’t really want to

‘start me


, I personally love it when they finally do!

Mr Walter Zavattiero,

Debating Co-ordinator

Annual Report 2014