CBHS Lewisham Prospectus

Page 1

Christian Brothers’ High School Lewisham A Catholic school in the Edmund Rice tradition Educating boys in Years 5 – 12 since 1891


Conanti Corona A Crown to the One Who Strives The values held by Christian Brothers’ High School Lewisham community are based on being one with God, one with and for others and one with self. These are expressed in the following values that embed the four Touchstones of the Charter for Catholic schools in the Edmund Rice tradition.

Liberating Education

Gospel Spirituality

Inclusive Community

Justice and Solidarity

We open hearts and minds, through quality teaching and learning experiences, so that through critical reflection and engagement each person is hope-filled and free to build a better world for all.

We invite all people into the story of Jesus and strive to make his message of compassion, justice and peace a living reality within our community

Our community is accepting and welcoming, fostering right relationships and committed to the common good.

We are committed to justice and peace for all, grounded in a spirituality of action and reflection that calls us to stand in solidarity with those who are marginalised and the earth itself.


Contents A Message from the Principal ......................................................................................................5 130 Years of Excellence ............................................................................................................... 9 Edmund Rice Education Australia ............................................................................................ 10 CBHS Campus ........................................................................................................................... 12 Justice and Peace ...................................................................................................................... 14 Global Community .................................................................................................................... 16 Head, Hands, Heart, Feet ............................................................................................................ 18 Building Relationships .............................................................................................................. 20 Focus on the Boy ....................................................................................................................... 22 Primary Years ............................................................................................................................ 28 Senior Years .............................................................................................................................. 34 Enrolment .................................................................................................................................. 38

We acknowledge the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation who are the Traditional Owners of the land on which we gather, learn and share as a school. We pay our respects to elders past, present and emerging and recognise their custodianship and ongoing connections to land, water and sea.



Welcome to Christian Brothers’ Lewisham There is a sense of energy and positivity here at Christian Brothers’ High School Lewisham which is infectious to all who join the community. Although this school is steeped in its 130 years of history it is a thoroughly modern and forward looking place. It is a growth focused school set on realising the potential of each of its young men. We are proudly one of the oldest Catholic schools in Sydney and the person of Jesus Christ shapes our actions, prayer and liturgy. We are also an inclusive community that welcomes others to share in our Christian values of hope, joy and love. We have a unique history of focusing on educating boys for five generations of students. At Christian Brothers Lewisham the spiritual, academic, pastoral, sporting and cultural lives of the school are all valued and they are brought together in such a way as to form young confident men who strive for excellence rather than arrogance. We expect our graduates to respect the people they encounter in life and strive to make the world a better place. Our students are firmly at the centre of all that we do. Students enjoy learning from a highly capable teaching staff who act with great skill and professionalism. We foster a close partnership with our families, who share with us the responsibility for their sons’ learning achievements, wellbeing, spiritual growth and growing self-reliance. With Blessed Edmund Rice as our model in faith, we encourage students to grow into the fullness of their humanity in an educational environment where they feel welcomed, accepted, and valued. We hope that each member of our community is faithful to the four touchstones: Liberating Education, Gospel Spirituality, Inclusive Community and Justice and Solidarity. As a Catholic school in the Edmund Rice Tradition, known as the Edmund Rice Education Australia (EREA) network of schools, Christian Brothers Lewisham is one of 54 schools, one Early Childhood Centre and 34 associated schools across Australia. EREA schools are part of an international network of schools in over 20 countries called Edmund Rice Education Beyond Borders. I invite you to discover the myriad of opportunities which awaits your son at Christian Brothers’ Lewisham, where we ‘focus on the boy to grow the man’.

Dr Michael Blowes Principal




CBHS Lewisham boys graduate with a sense of curiosity and the skills to make a positive difference in an everchanging world. Christian Brothers’ Lewisham is an independent non-selective boys’ school in the Edmund Rice tradition. From the same campus, for 130 years, CBHS has been providing high quality, supportive Catholic education for boys from Year 5 to Year 12.


Our values drive our mission Christian Brothers’ Lewisham are boys’ education specialist. Outstanding academic results are just the beginning - with 130 years of producing exceptional young men, CBHS integrates modern teaching methods and resources to equip boys with confidence in their abilities; the skills to succeed and a strong moral compass to provide direction. CBHS is large enough to provide a wide range of opportunities, but small enough that we know and support every boy. With a focus on nurturing the emotional, spiritual, physical and intellectual gifts of each boy, our pastoral care program is tailored to your son’s unique needs. A wide range of sporting activities, arts and music courses, social justice programs and community activities allow each student to find and nurture his talents, interests and skills.

130 years of excellence Christian Brothers’ High School Lewisham was established by the Christian Brothers in 1891. From small beginnings it has grown into a large school and has built up a proud tradition in academic, cultural and sporting achievements. The School was opened in 1889 at a time when Petersham and Lewisham were the terminus for the first day’s bullock teams making tracks from Sydney to Parramatta and Liverpool. At the time, the area had a population of around 10,000 people. The local paper reported the opening of CBHS on 12th December 1891 as “a comfortable, well-lighted building and gymnasium built at a cost of £1500 with accommodation for 100”. Today, the School operates as an independent Catholic school that is governed and owned by The Trustees of Edmund Rice Education Australia, with a student population of 1,300 from Years 5 to 12.


Edmund Rice – the foundation for liberating education Edmund Ignatius Rice was born in 1762 in Ireland where he received a good education. He created a successful business in the city of Waterford, supplying ships for long journeys. At the age of 23 he married Mary and together they had a daughter. By 1802, he was a wealthy man, and increasingly disturbed with the lot of the poor Irish Catholics. Thirteen years after his wife died, having provided for his daughter, he sold his business and began a night school for the “Quay” kids of Waterford. Edmund’s first helpers deserted him leaving him desperate, but then two men from his native Callan joined him not only to teach but to help Edmund found a religious order to educate poor boys. By 1825, Edmund Rice and his team of thirty Christian Brothers were educating, free of charge, 5,500 boys in 12 different towns and cities. Many were then clothed and fed. Currently, 1,700 Christian Brothers are educators and carers of the poor in twenty-eight countries around the world. 10

Edmund Rice Education Australia Edmund Rice Education Australia (EREA) is the body of schools, entities and offices offering a Catholic education in the tradition of Blessed Edmund Rice. EREA schools strive to offer a liberating education, based on a gospel spirituality, within an inclusive community committed to justice and solidarity. EREA has its own canonical and civil identity but remains closely connected to the Christian Brothers and their ongoing ministry. Schools operate in dioceses with the mandate of the Bishop of the Diocese and work closely with local Diocesan education authorities. The opportunity for Edmund Rice Education Australia is to reinforce the distinctive values of Edmund Rice Education through a national and unified network of Australian schools and educational entities. 11

CBHS Campus

Based in the leafy inner west of Sydney, Christian Brothers’ High School Lewisham has been educating boys from the same campus for 130 years. The campus is built around a central open space which allows boys to gather and play away from public roads. Classrooms are optimised for effective and engaging learning with cutting edge facilities, light, spacious and modern design and layout, and are all networked with up-to-date ICT solutions to enable innovative teaching. The Waterford Learning Centre is a learning hub and library that supports boys as they work through different levels and curriculum areas. Open to students during breaks and after school, the Centre provides a space for boys to collaborate with peers or complete individual research or study.


The Treacy Centre is the smaller of our multi-purpose centres and seats 200, the ideal size for year-group activities, incursions and meetings. It is also home to our state-of-the-art live-streaming studio where we deliver information evenings, parent meetings and guest speaker talks to the community – even if they are unable to be there in person! The Br Julian McDonald Centre is a purpose built 2,000 seat facility that is home to some of the most important events on the school calendar including whole school Mass and Assemblies. The space can also be packed down to facilitate a full size basketball court, volleyball court or indoor soccer field. CBHS students also have access to our retreat centre, Workul Koo in Terrigal on Sydney’s Central Coast. Located on the beach, the centre is a place for students to reflect and connect with themselves, their peers and God and is where many Old Boys recall some of their fondest memories.


Justice and Peace


We must replace the walls of clericalism, racism, discrimination, bias, homophobia and misogyny with bridges to acceptance, understanding, trust, support and respect. – Br Paul Conn cfc

Principal 2008 – 2020

CBHS aims to provide each boy with a sense of their place in the wider community. The Edmund Rice tradition inspires us to seek to offer hope to a world where the dignity of humanity and the beauty of creation is often devalued. The students and staff at Christian Brothers’ High School Lewisham are offered opportunities to play an integral role within the wider community addressing justice issues and assisting the disadvantaged. Our Primary students are involved in packing snack packs and preparing sandwiches for St Vincent de Paul, collecting goods and preparing hampers for the elderly and whole of school activities such as Project Compassion. Our High School students volunteer their time at Matthew Talbot, Tierney House and Cairnsfoot School and facilitate the School’s participation in events like St Vincent de Paul’s Christmas and Winter Appeals. Our senior students are also encouraged to support causes close to their hearts and guided on how to do this effectively. CBHS integrates justice and peace literacy into our learning programs so that they may be empowering, rigorous and an authentic reflection of the EREA Touchstones in an age appropriate manner. 15

Our place in a global community In 2015 CBHS Lewisham formed a partnership with Fe y Alegria, a school supported by the Christian Brothers in Lima, Peru. This initiative was fostered as part of the Edmund Rice Education Beyond Borders program, (EREBB). EREBB is an International network of Catholic schools educating young people from many different faiths and cultures. In over 20 countries, EREBB endeavours to promote global solidarity and offer a transformational education for justice and liberation.


This partnership means that both students and teachers are able to take part in a range of cross-cultural experiences throughout their time at CBHS Lewisham, the highlight of which is an opportunity to join the Year 11 trip to Peru to visit the school and build housing for a family in need. With travel restrictions expected to continue, this trip has been cancelled for this year. We fully expect and joyfully anticipate a reinstatement of this important event in our School’s life in years to come.



Head, Hands, Heart, Feet The School offers Religious Education based on the Sydney Catholic Schools program which focuses on the meaningful relationships in the boys’ lives, based around the boys’ personal experiences. Our Chapel seats 150 students and is always available for private prayer. Each week staff and students can join organised prayers and Mass is also available before school for students and staff on Special Liturgical Days. Devotion to Mary is practised regularly at school during May and October. At other times, the staff arrange non-eucharistic liturgies and other visitations to the chapel to enhance the Religious Education programme. Full school Masses are held either in the Br McDonald Centre, in one of the local parish churches or at St Mary´s Cathedral. CBHS Lewisham is a Catholic school and whilst our faith is at the core of everything we do, we without question are an inclusive community that welcomes students regardless of background, culture or religion. 19

Building relationships that last a lifetime When each student enrols, they are placed into their House and will remain a member of this House for the whole time they are at the School. Each of the eight Houses constitutes the primary group for sporting and cultural activities including the House Cup each year – as well as providing a student focus for pastoral care and student welfare programs. Each House was named after a significant person in the history of the School and has its own colours, crest, motto, totem and prayer. To support younger boys entering the School, Year 5 boys are given a Year 12 buddy to help them navigate the nuances of life at CBHS Lewisham. This also provides valuable mentoring and leadership experience for the older students – and the bonds that form are often close and long-lasting. 20

If someone were to ask me what I valued the most during my time at Lewisham, it was the strong bonds of friendship, between not only students but teachers, who worked together to further our potential. – Matthew Tropea 2018 School Dux



Focus on the boy At CBHS, we pride ourselves on knowing and caring for every boy within the School. From personal development camps to career facilities and resources; leadership programs for older boys and Homeroom Pastoral Care – we create an inclusive environment where every student feels valued. CBHS understands that consistent and ongoing relationships provide security and promote trust, and that’s why each boy retains the same homeroom teacher from Year 7 to Year 12. These teachers form a cornerstone of the pastoral care program and are instrumental in recognising the developmental needs of each boy. A recent review of CBHS’s pastoral care program concluded that this approach is best-practice and enables early detection and management of issues as they arise. CBHS supports every student and undertakes to develop their talents and interests and provide equal access to the curriculum. Creating an environment where every student can excel is a core value of the teaching staff throughout the School.


Providing the right opportunities to excel Christian Brothers’ Lewisham values academic achievement and supports each boy to excel within his personal areas of interest and talent. As boys’ education specialists, CBHS draws on best-practice pedagogy and a legacy of 130 years of experience to create an environment where boys can excel. CBHS is proudly non-selective and every boy is encouraged to find and achieve his unique academic ambitions. Our quality teaching, innovation, creativity and modern facilities provide the framework that allows each boy to achieve his full potential. The School supports each boy’s talents with a Diverse Learning Centre and a vibrant gifted and talented program. CBHS supports boys to be effective leaders and strong communicators. The curriculum is structured to provide boys with the tools and opportunities to excel academically from Year 5 to Year 12. The wellbeing of your son is central to the CBHS philosophy. Your son will be supported throughout his school career, with programs in place to ensure that boys transition smoothly from primary to high school; Year 10 to the senior school; and from high school into society.

CBHS Counselling CBHS is privileged to have full-time, school-based Counsellors. These services are highly valued in our school community and play an integral role in providing support to individuals or groups of students in need. The School Counsellors work very closely with the Pastoral Coordinators and are dedicated to promoting and supporting student wellbeing and student achievement from Years 5-12. The Counsellors also deliver talks to year groups to promote wellbeing. Some of these may include internet related issues, studying for the HSC and managing stress. Our Counsellors have teaching and education backgrounds and are well equipped to understand the needs of school students on an internal and external level.


Student leadership

Generations of students have passed through CBHS Lewisham over 130 years – with each individual adding their personal talents and interests to the vibrant, diverse and caring community of the School. Leadership opportunities exist for students via formal programs such as our Primary, Secondary and House Captains and informal avenues such as sport, academic clubs and peer to peer programs. Our student leadership programs are designed to promote communication, both listening and talking, with a diverse audience, goal setting, hard work and a willingness to serve others. These programs are an opportunity for our students to develop confidence to prepare to become community and professional leaders we know they are once they leave the school.



A message from the Primary Department The Primary years are the beginning of your journey at CBHS Lewisham. It is a community that is open, warm and welcoming. It is the bridge between primary and high school and provides that transition which is crucial to the development of our young boys into men. CBHS Lewisham Primary is a dynamic learning community that promotes independence, courage and risk-taking for the purpose of being successful and lifelong learners and young men of action. The Primary, in partnership with family, plays a significant role in shaping our young boys into confident, independent and perceptive young men. The key to our focus is that, as a School community, we are developing the whole person – intellectually, physically, emotionally, socially and spiritually. Students are encouraged to take more responsibility for their actions and to maintain positive relationships within their community. CBHS Lewisham Primary recognises the importance of the boys displaying their individual gifts outside the traditional classroom. There are plenty of opportunities for the boys to express themselves and they are encouraged to participate and share their talents. The opportunities enable boys to enhance their creativity, leadership, wellbeing, resilience and teamwork skills. Mark Woodbury Acting Deputy Principal


Primary Years At Christian Brothers’ Lewisham, the Primary curriculum encompasses the development of the whole student: academically, socially, personally and in faith. We expect the boys to always give their best, no matter the task or activity. The curriculum challenges and evokes thought, and is focused on developing individual talents and abilities. At CBHS Lewisham we understand that what is being taught and how it is being taught are of equal importance. Being a boys’ school, we understand the worth of designing learning experiences that are creative, meaningful and exciting for all the boys, whilst ensuring that each lesson caters for different levels and aptitudes. Most new students start in Year 5, with a few places offered in Year 7. Despite sharing the campus with high school students, and being included in whole-school activities like assemblies and masses, primary students have their own playground; and each primary class has a classroom teacher – making the transition is seamless from early primary years.


Academically, Year 5 and 6 lay the foundations for high school. Through a rich co-curricular and challenging upperprimary curriculum, increased opportunities lead to the development of confident learners. Children about to start Year 5 at around 11 or 12 years of age are generally open and flexible in their friendships, making this an opportune time to transition to a new school. During their first weeks at CBHS, Year 5 boys are introduced to their Year 12 buddy who will be a constant throughout the first year and will introduce him to life at CBHS Lewisham. The whole of Year 5 goes on camp in early Term 1 to help build relationships between the boys. Primary students develop a familiarity with the broader school campus, school expectations and senior teachers that facilitates smooth transition to Year 7 and the senior school.


Primary Curriculum CBHS Lewisham offers the seven Key Learning Areas (KLA’s) which are mandated by the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA)

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

English Mathematics Science and Technology Human Society and Its Environment Personal Development, Health and Physical Education Creative Arts Languages – Italian and French

Extension programs The boys have the opportunity to be involved in various educational programs throughout the year which are extensions to the curriculum. Some of these include the University of New South Wales competitions (Mathematics, English, Spelling, Writing, Computer Studies and Science), Maths Olympiad, Mathletics, Science Enrichment, Waterford Words, The Portrait Prize, School Musical, Media Project and Debating.


Outside the School To enhance their overall education, the boys are involved in a number of excursions and incursions throughout the year. A four day camp is organised for Year 5 to Milson Island during Term 1 as a chance for our newest students to get to know each other whilst undertaking outdoor activities such as kayaking, boat building, archery and swimming. In Year 6, students travel to our nation’s capital overnight to visit sites such as Parliament House, The Australian War Memorial and Questacon to see in real life what they have been studying in the classroom. Primary students also have the opportunity to represent the School in chess, public speaking, music, choir, swimming, athletics and representative sport. All students are encouraged to participate and share their talents. The opportunities enable boys to enhance their creativity, leadership, wellbeing, resilience and team work skills.

Understanding our wider community We live in a community, country and world that face justice and morality issues on a daily basis. To be active members in our society, to be advocates and a voice for those in need or who have no voice in our communities, the boys must understand the issues around them. There are many aspects that contribute to strengthening the religious dimension of the School in Years 5 and 6 which encourage boys to live out the challenge of the Gospels to serve those less fortunate. Our Social Justice Program is based around the teachings of Edmund Rice. Its focus is Right Relationships and Service to Others. All boys, whether a part of the Primary Social Justice Group or not, are advocates within our community and are encouraged to offer service to those in our community who require it.




Senior Years Senior years at CBHS Lewisham A proudly comprehensive school, CBHS always strives for academic excellence. As on the sporting field, students are called to give their personal best. Regular homework is set and an organised home study program is expected of every student. While a broad curriculum is offered, students’ selection of subjects is dependent upon demonstrated academic achievement. Each student develops personal academic goal setting. Our curriculum structure encourages each student to meet and exceed his personal best through a wide range of courses in both the junior and senior school. During these years, students are given opportunities to develop their interpersonal and leadership skills through clubs, sports and school leadership positions.

Secondary curriculum Excellence in academic results has long been established as a CBHS hallmark. From its establishment to the present day, the School has always produced high academic achievers. In 2020 the School Dux received and ATAR of 99.7 and is currently studying Space Engineering at The University of Sydney Four boys from the class of 2020 achieved a place on the All Rounder HSC honor roll for achieving the highest band in all their courses of study. With a further 28 boys recognised as Distinguished Achievers for achieving the highest band in one or more courses of study. In the 2020 HSC Chemistry, Physics and Biology courses recorded results significantly above average as did Advanced Mathematics, Extension 1 and Extension 2 Mathematics. Legal Studies, Ancient History and Modern History were our most successful humanities courses. 96% of CBHS students who applied for University have been offered places, with a number on scholarships. Those that did not apply to University have used their Vocational Education Training to secure apprenticeships and paid work in trades and the hospitality and fitness industries.




Co-curricular activities Central to our focus on growing each boy as an individual, CBHS Lewisham offers a range of co-curricular activities to enhance and nurture each student’s talents, interests and passions. CBHS Lewisham has a proud sporting tradition with a number of current premiership teams across a range of sports. All boys are encouraged to be active via MCC or Internal Sports each Thursday. Programs that outdoor challenges, include ski trips, the Duke of Edinburgh program and an aviation club. We also offer debating and public speaking, music groups and performance, history, arts, games, chess and robotics clubs. Boys are encouraged to initiate groups or support causes that are important to them. Senior boys organise and participate a range of activities close to them each year.

School Life Transport Christian Brothers’ Lewisham is convenient for families living in the inner west of Sydney. Within walking distance of Lewisham Train Station and Lewisham West Light Rail Station the school is also serviced by School Special Buses. Families also find it easy to drop their sons off in the ‘kiss and drop’ area located on The Boulevarde.

Uniform Shop Christian Brothers’ Lewisham’s uniform is proudly worn by students from Year 5 to 12. Our onsite uniform shop is open two mornings and one afternoon each week along with online ordering. A second hand clothing pool is also available with all proceeds going to charity.

Canteen Our onsite canteen is open for breakfast, recess, lunch and after school, selling a range of items with weekly specials and amended menus during Lent to accommodate dietary needs.


Enrolment Most boys enter the school in Year 5 or 7, with our largest intake being in Year 5. However, Christian Brothers’ High School Lewisham welcomes students to enrol in any year if places are available. Whilst CBHS Lewisham is a Catholic school and our faith and practice is the cornerstone of everything we do, we are also, without question, an inclusive community and welcome all families regardless of race, culture, faith or family dynamic.


The most important factor in any enrolment is how the student will live our touchstones of: • • • •

Inclusive Community Liberating Education Gospel Spirituality Justice and Solidarity

If you are interested in enrolling your son at Christian Brothers’ High School Lewisham please visit https://www.cbhslewisham.nsw.edu.au/join-us/ to submit an expression of interest.


130 years of excellence in education The story behind the 130 year design The design as a whole, illustrates the fusion of Indigenous and Irish culture, and how Indigenous history is woven throughout every day, due to being the first custodians of this land. The four interwoven leaves at the edge represent the strong connection to Irish culture, while branching out and exploring, establishing and living in a new Australian culture. These four leaves also represent the touchstones. The campsite in the middle of the O represents – meeting, communication, bonding, teaching and learning. De Greer-Yindimincarlie Yindi Artz

Christian Brothers’ High School Lewisham 68 The Boulevarde, Lewisham NSW 2049 Postal: Private Mail Bag No. 2, Petersham NSW 2049 Tel: 02 8585 1744 Fax: 02 8585 1787 Email: office@cbhslewisham.nsw.edu.au Website: cbhslewisham.nsw.edu.au