Thursday, 30 December 2010

Mike A Little Blue

Good article in today's Daily News on old boy Mike Sandle who is about to take up the role of Manager of the Auckland Blues rugby team.

Those who know Mike (Roman) Sandle will tell you that he is a great advert for the College as he brings the same level headed but caring approach to whatever he does. We wish him all the best, except for when they play the Hurricanes!

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Merry Christmas One And All

May God's peace be with you and your families over the festive season.

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Staff Changes

Although staff changes tend to be infrequent at FDMC there will be a few changes in 2011.
  • Danielle Manu (sister of old boy Deacon) is off to be the DP at Marfell Primary - not too far away and a position we are sure Danielle will bring her legendary intensity and enthusiasm too.
  • Ian McGrath is taking a break from teaching to join the commercial world - he will be missed both in the classroom and on the soccer field.
  • After many years of service to teacher aiding and cricket Gaye Bolstead is moving on - she will be missed in both areas and in the staffroom.
  • Two new homeroom teachers will be joining the staff in 2011 - Roni Asi and Jenny Sheriff.
  • The PE department will gain Ricky Green, an experienced teacher who has done a stint as HOD of PE at De La Salle in Mangere.
  • Old Boy and current staff member Tim Stuck has been appointed to the new position of Director of Sport.
  • Replacing Matt Goodwin as Year 9 Hostel Supervisor will be old boy Thomas Walsh, who will have a good grasp of how things are done at FDMC.
The college is also looking for a new Lasallian Youth Coordinator so if that sounds like something you might be interested in check out the FDMC website for more details.

Monday, 20 December 2010

More Reps

Following on from our posting on Friday comes the news that current students Ryan Watson and GJ Pike have been named in the Central Districts Under 16 cricket team. Well done guys and good luck for the tournament.

Friday, 17 December 2010


A quick peruse of today's Daily News shows that the FDMC boys, past and present, are out there doing it in the world of sport.

Leading article on the back page (click here to read) was on Kyle Van der Merwe's win in both the Junior Boy's Javelin and Shot Put at the National Sec Schools Champs. Kyle is a very promising athlete who is excelling in a number of sports at the College.

Also contained within the paper was the news that both Beaudan Barrett and Scot Fuglistaller have been named in the Huuricanes wider training squad for this year's Super 15.

On the cricket field Kurt Leuthard has been named in the Central Districts Under 18 side to play the national tournament and we are sure guys like Sam Wells must have also gone close to selection.

Congratulations should also go to all the FDMC old boys who make up a large proportion of the New Plymouth United cricket team that won the Premier One Day title last weekend. Captain Ryan Fleming will be taking his band of merry men north later in the season to contest the national club title.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Proud Shearers

A great photo from the archives of a group of students with their National Shearing Certificates. Br Will certainly has a gleam of pride in his eye over his young charges.

Can you tell us who the students in the photo are and what year this was taken? Leave a comment below if you can help.

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Any One For Rugby

We received the following email last week from old boy Cameron Walsh.

I trust this finds you healthy and well, looking forward to summer in the Naki as I am.

The rugby team I AM “physioing” for are on a recruiting drive for next season, in particular younger lads for the under 21’s etc. They have asked me to chase up my contacts in New Plymouth about potential lads who might be keen to play for the club.

The club is Marist St Pats. If you know of any boys coming down to Wellington next year the club would love to get hold of their emails/phone numbers. I’m not sure how this goes with privacy act etc but though I’d check anyway. Cheers for now.

Cam Walsh

If you would like to find out more you can email Cam by clicking here.

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Making Contact

We are always happy to try and put old boys in touch with each other. We recently recieved this short email from Hugh Girling-Butcher - if you wish to contact Hugh just click here.

If anyone remembers me from FDMC I was in the second intake after the foundation class. I would be very interested to hear from members of that class or members above or below.

Thursday, 9 December 2010

A Special Day

Today is the last day of the 2010 school year. Student's are chomping at the bit to get out of the classroom and into some summer recreation, while staff will be waiving them a tearful farewell (perhaps).

All the best for your summer holidays guys and use them well. Many old boys will be able to tell you that they are a precious time and not something that you can take for granted later in life.

So look out Mum and Dad, here we come!

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

A Matter Of Science

As you know, we are always pleased to receive emails from old boys. The following is from our most illustrious academic old boy Prof. Michael Kelly. Michael is a great supporter of the college and funds the annual award for top science student. We could not have a better role model for our science students to look up to.
Please send my congratulation to Simon Gray (Dux - ed.) at his success this year, and wish him all the best in the coming years and please send my best regards to Michael Finnegan whom I have just seen giving the prize to Simon. I will be in NZ from 18 December to 3 January but mainly in the north of the NI, Wellington and the South of the SI, so it looks as though I will not get to Taranaki. I am still on for spending 9 months in Wellington from July 2012, so I will make more than one trip north and west from there. Last week I was a the Royal Society in London to celebrate the end of the 350th year of the Society. I have picked up three copies of a catalogue of the scientific exhibits on show at the RS, which I will send out by snail mail. Last year when I turned 60, I had a birthday reception at the RS, and the Library put on a display of the manuscript diaries of Captain James Cook for my guests to look at!

Best regards to any who remember me, and all the best to the School next year. God bless.

Professor Michael J Kelly FRS FREng MAE Hon FRSNZ
Prince Philip Professor of Technology,
Centre for Advanced Photonics and Electronics,
Department of Engineering,
University of Cambridge,

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

More Cricketers On The Way

Great Weekend Warriors article in today's Daily News on FDMC student Cameron Meads (pictured). Cameron is just one of a number of very promising cricketers that FDMC continues to produce.

All of them are a testament to the enthusiasm and hard work of staff such as Mark Wales and Gaye Bolstad. As cricket coordinator Gaye has done a fantastic job over the last decade in organising and growing the game at FDMC and we are convinced that the next decade will see a lot of first class cricketers (from FDMC) who owe a debt of gratitude to Gaye and her supporters.

Monday, 6 December 2010

All Feedback Welcomed

It is always great to get feedback from old boys on the posts we put up. The following are a couple of responses we have had to recent posts.

I imagine you've had a zillion calls about the photo but...... just in case, the nearest is a Beet, one the twins. The back one is Bro Adrian Watson's nephew - I can't think of his name! The middle one is now a farmer near Stratford and a father of kids at the school. I'm not sure whether its Stratford or one of the other Catholic schools. Maybe they're at Secondary by now. - Kevin Neal (Fr)

Firstly I am sad to hear that Anthony (Tony to all of us at school with him) has passed away.
I want to comment about this photo, because I was in same Athletics group as Anthony. I am quite sure I competed in the same high jump event. I kind of recall Anthony won the 200 or 400 meters. I won the 100 meters with Gerard Sheehan coming second. We competed in quite a few event against each other. While I boarded mainly, and Tony came on Stratford bus from Midhurst, because we both lived in that neck of the woods, we were good friends. In my photo collection, back in Australia, somewhere, I think I have couple of school photos of Tony. Since I am presently living and working in Russia, when I go to Australia at Christmas, I will take some time to search and see if I can find anything. If you can pass the message to Michael, I would like to tell him that if he looks in the School Magazine for those years when Anthony was student, he will be able to see the sporting achievements. I am sure there was a Tim Schumacher as well. who was good athlete also. Either one of them or the other, had a sister or cousin, Shona who was also excellent athlete. Always interesting to look at the old photos. -Ken Tocker

Friday, 3 December 2010

Keeping The Milk Cool

This is one of the Daily News archive photos. We don't know who is looking after the milk but judging from the cadet uniforms we think this must have been taken in the early 1980's.

If you have any ideas please leave a comment.

Thursday, 2 December 2010

On Line Interaction

Social networking is all about interaction and we bring your attention to the FDMC Old Boys on Facebook (click to visit). There are a small number of old boys using this social forum but we would like to see more involved, so become a friend and maybe met up with some old friends.

The FDMC Foundation web site is under construction and should be released on the world this month. Why not email us any ideas of what you might want out of this site.

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Sports Awards

It has been brought to our attention that we have not published this year's sports awards. We do so now, so you can check out who has got their name on your old cup.

Sport Awards

Athletics: L F Walsh Challenge Cup Senior Champion -- Jamie Hareb
Basketball: Captain Senior A -- Alejandro Barrientos
Basketball: Denis Toon Trophy Most Improved Player -- Fletcher Hartley-Smith
Basketball: Most Valuable Player -- Casey Reihana-Dombroski
Basketball: Joseph Riordan Trophy Best Basketballer -- Casey Reihana-Dombroski
Basketball: Crowley Family Cup Most Outstanding Team Player-- Crighton Rangiwananga
Cricket: D’ath Family Trophy Most Valuable Bowler -- Samuel Wells
Cricket: Kirk Family Trophy Most Valuable Batsman -- Ben Wilson
Cricket: Fleming Trophy Most Improved Player -- Sam Fastier
Cricket: Bolstad Trophy Most Valuable Player -- Kurt Leuthart
Cricket: Br Peter Smyth Trophy Contribution to Cricket -- Samuel Wells
Cross Country: Br Tim Trophy Champion -- Julian Beardman
Football: Crow Cup Outstanding First Season in 1st XI -- Adon Burkett
Football: FDMC Football Cup Most Improved Player -- Damian Mosquera
Football: Hall Cup Outstanding Contribution to Soccer -- Thomas Smith
Football: FDMC Soccer Trophy Player of the Year -- Lance Molyneaux
Football: Hareb Cup 1st XI Players’ Player -- Hayden Murray
Golf: Barrett Family Cup Golf Open Champion -- Hayden Chamberlain
Cycling: George Wharehoka Cup Outstanding Senior Cyclist -- Andrew Jane
Hockey: Landrigan Cup Captain 1st XI -- Ciaran King
Hockey: Br Tim Trophy Development as a Player -- Ciaran King
Hockey: Bedford Trophy Most Valuable Player -- Alex Sullivan-Brown
Hockey: King Trophy Contribution to Hockey Team Award -- Ben Wilson
In Line Hockey: Beardman Trophy Greatest Contribution to In Line Hockey -- Julian Beardman
In Line Hockey: Ravens In Line Hockey Most Outstanding Player -- Julian Beardman
Multi Sport: Maclean Family Trophy Outstanding Performance -- BJ Monk
Rugby: Keinzley Cup Outstanding First Season in 1st XV -- Scott Barrett
Rugby: Michael James Milham Trophy For Sportsmanship -- Emmett Hurley
Rugby: John George Cup Most Points in the Season -- Nick Childs
Rugby: Kane Paltridge Memorial Trophy Outstanding Player -- Emmett Hurley
Rugby: Crawford Cup Most Valuable Player -- Taylor Jackson
Sailing: Port Taranaki Trophy Junior Sailor of the Year -- Riley Looker
Sailing: Fitzroy Yachts Trophy Senior Sailor of the Year -- Tobias Looker
Skiing: Lynsky Cup Fastest Skier -- Finlay Neeson
Skiing: Neeson Family Trophy Most Improved Skier -- Thornton Davies
Squash: Charteris Cup Best Squash Player -- Nick Stretton
Surfing: Simon Deken Trophy Most Outstanding Performance -- Seth Marshall
Swimming: Quintas Challenge Cup Senior Champion -- Tei Walden
Tennis: Moore Cup Senior Champion -- Tei Walden
Waka Ama: Toa Waka Ama Trophy For Promotion of Auahi kore/Smokefree Lifestyles -- Zachary Power

Inter House Trophies
Swimming: Winter Cup -- Loreto
Athletics: William Butler Memorial Cup -- Solomon
Cross Country: FDMC Trophy -- Benildus
Football: Powell Trophy -- Loreto
Rugby: M S Walsh Trophy -- Loreto
Basketball: Miles Benton Trophy -- Loreto
Overall Winning House: Loreto

Special Awards
David Taylor Memorial Trophy Outstanding Contribution to College Sport -- Sam Wells
Kevin Brophy Trophy Sportsman of the Year -- Julian Beardman/Finlay Neeson
Fair Play Award Outstanding Sportsmanship -- Emmett Hurley

Monday, 29 November 2010

Rugby World Cup Here We Come

Our rugby season has come to an end with the All Blacks playing there last game of the year. Now the build up to the RWC begins in earnest.

Great to see our man Conrad Smith continuing to play to a very high level for the All Blacks and we note that pundits such as Joseph Romanos are now talking of him as one of the greats. Very pleasing, even if they make the mistake of calling him a Wellingtonian!

Those of you who are prepared to sit through four test matches in a row on a Sunday morning may also have noticed the other FDMC connection in international rugby, namely our very own Deacon Manu. Deacon has been playing professionally for the Scarlets in Wales and has been selected for Fiji as tight head prop and captain. Having drawn 16 all with Wales last week the Fiji boys are doing pretty well and we will be watching Deacon closely as the RWC approaches.

Friday, 26 November 2010

Almost Over

Another year's exams are almost over. The sun is out, the surf is up and it is just a matter of waiting for the results to roll in.

Enjoy your summer holidays guys.

Thursday, 25 November 2010

U2 For 99

Well done to current students Cameron Betts and Ricky Malcolm on winning a video competiton and recieving 99 tickets to the up coming U2 concert. Showing their Lasallian spirit the guys then held a competition themselves to give away a significant number of the tickets. Their exploits have been well documented in the Daily News.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

The Sort Of Thing We Like To Do

Long time readers of this blog may recall this image from last year. there was some debate about who the jumper was, with the final consensus being it was Anthony Schumacher.

We recently received the following email from Michael Schumacher.

I just happened to be surfing the net and came across an old blog on your FDMC old boys website. The blog was entitled "The Mystery Jumper" and was dated 16 September 2009. I'm pretty sure the photo is of my late father, Anthony Schumacher who passed away about 10 years ago. I don't have any photos of him in his school days, neither does my mother. I hoped that perhaps there was some way I could get a copy of the original photo. Up until I saw this photo I thought my fathers boasts about being a record holding high jumper in school were just that, boasts. It would be great to have a photo to back up his stories.

We have passed on the photo to Michael but wonder if any one out there might have other photos of Anthony which we could also send to the Schumacher family - if you do email them to us.

Monday, 22 November 2010

Magazine Sponsorship

We noticed the following article in the latest college newsletter and thought we would share it with the wider old boys community.

The College magazine – the “Cardinal, Blue and Gold” – is the official record of our College year. The magazine is a reflection of all the events and activities of the College year. So as to be able to include all the significant activities of the year, up to and including the Junior prizegiving held in early December, the magazine is published in February of each year. It is made available to all current families and is mailed home to Year 13 and other students who finished at the College the previous year. You will be aware, the magazine is a costly production and in an attempt to subsidise the cost of and to produce a magazine of the highest possible quality, the College would like to offer families and businesses the opportunity to sponsor a page. We have 140 pages available for sponsorship at $25.00 per page for family sponsorship and $50.00 per page for business sponsorship. This would allow for your family name or business name and details to be typeset in the bottom margin as the sponsor of that page.

If you are able to be a college magazine sponsor you can contact the college at 06 7536149 or

Friday, 19 November 2010

2011 Leaders

The following students are getting ready to continue the traditon of great leadership at the college.

Head Boy: Teihorangi Walden (pictured)
Deputy Head Boy: Tyler Fleming
Lasallian Student Captain: Benjamin Monk
Cultural Captain: Jarrod Bakker
Sports Captain: Kieran O'Donnell

House Captains:

Benildus: Zachary Power
La Salle: Scott Busing
Loreto: Luke McCallum
Solomon: Nick Arnold

Prefects: Joe Clark, Jack De Luca, Jamie Hareb, Kurt Leuthart, Seth Marshall, Shaun Neal

La Salle House Hostel Head Boarder: Shaun Neal
Hostel Deputy Head Boarder: Scott Barrett

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

2010 Special Prizes

The following were the Special Awards presented at last Friday's Senior Prize Giving.

First in Media Studies -- Shane Garner
First in Information Technolgy -- Scott Martin; Jaden Gilmour
Kelly Endowment for Physics -- Simon Gray
Medicross Award for Biology -- Aniket Mehendale
The Senior Cup for Chemistry -- Aniket Mehendale
Alexander Trust Award in Senior Agriculture -- Troy Stevenson
The Senior Cup for Mathematics with Calculus -- Eugen Daughtery
The Senior Cup for Mathematics with Statistics -- Simon Gray
The Senior Cup for Physical Education -- Troy Stevenson
The Roger French Cup for Visual Art -- Alex Sullivan-Brown
Moana Clothing Senior Cup for Graphics -- Callum Schrader
The Senior Cup for Geography -- Samuel Wells
The Smith Family Award for History -- Christian McSweeney- Novak
The Hills Family Award for English -- Jonathan Carey
The Senior Cup for Classical Studies -- Max Prestidge
The Leo Walsh Award for Economics -- Thomas Fahy
Senior Award for Accounting -- Thomas Fahy
Taama Tuu Tama Ora Award -- Teihorangi Walden
The Margaret Wright Music Award -- Jarrod Bakker
Gaines Award for the Study of Law -- Max Prestidge
The Butterworth Cup for Culture -- Christian McSweeney-Novak
The Smith/Drinkwater Shield -- Tane Clement
Daily News Award for Literary Excellence -- Max Prestidge
Senior Award for Top Student in Design -- Jaden Gilmour
Michael Finnigan Award for Service to the College -- Troy Stevenson
Moriarty Cup for Diligence -- Brandon Pokere
Shell Todd Oil Services Trophy for Senior Science -- Aniket Mehendale
Medals for Academic Excellence in Years 11 and 12 -- Ken Imrie; Jonathan Ritchie; Joe Bracegirdle; Jonathan Carey
Wayne Kibby Memorial "Good Bloke" Cup -- Troy Stevenson
Sports Captain Cup Awarded -- Alejandro Barrientos
Cultural Captain Cup -- Shane Garner
Margaret Fleming Trophy for Deputy Head Boarder -- Reegan Corbett
Br Anthony Hawkins Memorial Trophy for Head Boarder -- Troy Stevenson
Peter Costello Trophy for Deputy Head Boy -- Tane Clement
Butler Family Trophy for Head Boy -- Samuel Wells
Proxime Accessit -- Aniket Mehendale
Dux -- Simon Gray

Monday, 15 November 2010

Simon The Dux

Congratulations to Simon Gray on being made Dux of the college for 2010. These awards are never a one off but rather the culmination of years of hard work so it is always good to see students rewarded for all that hard work.

Simon was presented with his award by FDMC legend Michael Finnigan, a man who has been involved with the college since it's foundation.

Simon is the son of proud office lady, and Jubilee girl, Karen Gray.

Friday, 12 November 2010

Graduands 2010

Yesterday's Senior Prizegiving was the usual glittering and uplifting event. We will bring you details of the main prize winners early next week but include here the full list of students who have graduated in 2010.

Jacob Abbott, Luke Duthie, Tom Lord, Max Prestidge,
Jerome Aitken-Chapman, Paul Estacio, Adam Luque, Crighton Rangiwananga,
Jason Andrews, Thomas Fahy, Scott Martin, Dillon Roberts,
Tim Apps, Rory Fearn, Jeremy McCracken, Callum Schrader,
Mason Barnes, Thomas Firkin, Christian McSweeney-Novak, Thomas Smith,
Alejandro Barrientos, Jason French, Aniket Mehendale, Nick Stachurski,
Julian Beardman, Shane Garner, Ethan Mills, Troy Stevenson,
Jordan Brewster, Jaden Gilmour, Lance Molyneaux, Alex Sullivan-Brown,
David Bryan, Tim Glass, Scott Morrison, Michael Taylor,
Paul Burrows, Simon Gray, Kody Murdoch, Matthew Van den Tillaart,
Nicholas Childs, Fraser Hall, Hayden Murray, Mattheus Van der Lee,
Tane Clement, Samuel Houghton, Thomas Nagel, Dylon Walsh,
Jan Coetzee, Emmett Hurley, Dorrien Neeson, Ryan Warner,
Reegan Corbett, Callum Ireland, Finlay Neeson, Samuel Wells,
Connor Crowley, Taylor Jackson, Eria Ngaanga, Samuel Whareaitu,
Thornton Davies, Patrick Johnson, Simon Orr, Rhys Williams,
Eugen Daughtery, Ciaran King, Ben Pentelow, Ben Wilson,
Tommy Death, David Lepper, Brandon Pokere, Matthew Wise

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Signed And Sealed

It is one of those traditions that has only developed in recent years - the signing of the shirt as a farewell to college.

Today is Senior Prizegiving and Graduation for this year's senior group. The shirts have been signed, the books handed in (maybe), exam preparations made (hopefully) and all is in readiness for the next phase of these guys lives.

We wish them all well for the future and hope that they keep in contact with their old school, and yes they do seem to look younger every year!

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

From The Desk Of The Principal II

A couple more out takes from the Principal's column in the latest newsletter.

It was good to be part of the group of adults and students who travelled to Auckland to be hosted by De La Salle College, Mangere as we welcomed Brother Alvaro – Superior General of the De La Salle Brothers, to New Zealand. He is in charge of nearly 4,000 brothers in more than 80 countries where they educate over a million students in partnership with 80,000 lay staff. It was good for us to show Brother the part of his domain that we represent and it was good to hear his encouraging messages to our group.

We look forward to Graduation and Prizegiving next week, following which, our senior students will face NCEA examinations. I wish them all well.

St John Baptist de La Salle – Pray for us
Live Jesus in our hearts – forever
Martin Chamberlain

Monday, 8 November 2010

From The Desk Of The Principal

Our school received a three-yearly Special Character Review visit from the diocesan team recently. The Community Summary of their report follows:


From the cross visible at the entrance way of the driveway and the inviting chapel with the open door, all who enter the college can see that Francis Douglas Memorial College environment is visibly Catholic. The memorial plaque to Father Vernon Douglas and the statue of St John Baptist De La Salle, the founder of the Lasallian brothers, further enhance the college motto “Christo duce” – with Christ as our leader. Staff and the students make this motto live in the caring and supportive atmosphere evident in the college.

The spirituality of students is a strength of the college. Parents and students commented on the compassionate and caring relationships of students, parents and staff. The Board is very supportive of Special Character. This support is clearly reflected in Board practices including financial support for Religious Education, Pastoral Care, resources and professional development.

The principal is a faithfilled witness in the parish through his ministry role. He brings new ideas and together with the staff will gradually work towards bringing some changes that will benefit the teaching and learning in the college. The Director of Religious Studies is an informed
and faithful Catholic who witnesses his commitment to the Lasallian charism of this Catholic school. He has a wealth of knowledge, understandings and traditions of Catholicism.

Since the last review the most significant area of development is the academic level of RE. This has made it more credible in the eyes of the students. Religious Education is given appropriate status in the teaching programme.

Prayer is an integral part of college life. Each day starts with prayer for the students in their vertical forms. Staff take turns to lead prayer reflections each day and some departmental meetings start with prayer. These are positive ways to see daily life in the light of the Good News.

The whole school community is to be commended for the financial support given to Caritas Lenten appeals, MAD (Mission Action Day), and Lasallian missions. They also collect goods for the local foodbank and the Christmas hamper appeal. The college staff and helpers are to be complemented for the organisation and hospitality extended to other Catholic Colleges when they hosted the O’Shea Shield competition this year.Other colleges have commented on this.

Students are encouraged to take responsibility for their own behaviour as part of their personal
growth. The focus is on care rather on discipline. This has resulted in a low level of behaviour management being necessary. Stewardship is a way of life and with no religious, the staff accept the responsibility for delivering the curriculum with Catholic special character.

St John Baptist de La Salle – Pray for us
Live Jesus in our hearts – forever
Martin Chamberlain

Friday, 5 November 2010

We May Be A Little Biased...

... but what the hell is Grumpy Henry thinking.

No Conrad Smith just lowered the team IQ by quite a few points. It will be very interesting to see whether haircuts, tattoos and mascara is a better All Black combination than brains and heart.

Rant over.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

How To Boil An Egg II

Following on from our last post here is an image from the late 80's/early 90's of some of the young guys cooking up a storm in the brother's kitchen. It may have been that Br Ollie had passed on his famous scone recipe.

It is a pity that we do not have a dedicated home economics type facility at the college but we are always looking for ways to get the students "hands on".

Monday, 1 November 2010

How To Boil An Egg

This might be of use to those of you looking for a cheap gift for a young adult.

Cook Book For Sale - ‘How to Boil an Egg’ has been produced by Andrea Kelly and is targeted for school leavers moving away from home. The books are available at the college office and are $20 a copy. $5.00 will be donated back to the college.

Saturday, 30 October 2010

The Haka Competition

Great article in today's Daily News featuring the College Haka Competition. Click here to view the Daily News video of the event.

Thursday, 28 October 2010


Last Friday saw the college celebrate our annual Mission Action Day (MAD). It is always a highlight of the year and continues to follow a tried and true formula that makes it fun to do good deeds. The formula goes something like this;
  • find sponsors and collect the dough
  • hand the money in at vertical form on MAD day
  • gather for a liturgy in the hall
  • indulge in a spot of culture with the Haka competition
  • set off on the sponsored walk
  • up hill, down dale, shirts on, shirts off
  • return to the college tired but satisfied
  • reap the rewards of a good deed done - the MAD Day sausage!
The slide show documents the 2010 version of events through the lens of Jane Connolly.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

From The Desk Of The Principal

Taken from the latest newsletter we offer you the Principal's letter as a way of keeping up with what is current at the college.

Last term’s newsletter may have been left in school bags after the last day of term since not many of our PTA members read this notice that they have asked me to reprint:

Our PTA wants to know if parents need some helpful advice in keeping their sons safe. They will arrange an evening that will feature appropriate speakers to give information on issues surrounding drugs, alcohol, sexuality, internet safety or other issues if there is adequate parental demand. Please email your wishes to with the title ʻPTA Parent Eveningʼ and make suggestions for content if you believe a gathering is warranted. At their next meeting in November, the PTA will plan for such a meeting if more than 20 families have emailed us. Only three families did last time.

We express our sympathy to Christopher Pearce and his family in the loss of Chris’s mother after a long illness. May she rest in peace. I know that Chris is well supported by his friends who will work to lessen his grief.

Practice examinations for Years 11 to 13 students have concluded and as soon as possible, reports
will be sent home to give early advice in time for it to be heeded. MAD Day occurs on Friday and lead up activities are indicating a successful day. I want to give special tribute to Tyler Fleming whose two fundraising movie evenings represented creative entrepreneurial thinking. One of the movies, Last Paradise, featuring our own John and Finlay Neeson, is a must-see for any Taranaki resident.

Following Labour Day a contingent of board members, staff and students will journey to Auckland for two days to meet with Brother Alvaro Rodriguez Echeverria who is the world leader of the De La Salle brothers. This should be another special occasion for De La Salle College, John Paul College and us to strengthen the Lasallian bond we have in common.

Thanks to fundraising from our PTA we have been able to produce some impressive historical photographs for display in our office foyer.

St John Baptist de La Salle – Pray for us
Live Jesus in our hearts – forever
Martin Chamberlain

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

More Graduates

Well done to the following students who have graduated from Otago University in recent times.

Shaan Davis -- BPhEd
Jared Drummond -- BCom
Thomas Fastier -- BCom
Campbell Fleming -- BCom
Daniel Graham --- BSc
Thomas Hills -- MB ChB
Scott Jackson -- BCom Dip Grad
David Joines -- BSc
Samuel Markham -- BAppSc
Anthony Martin -- CertFitMgt
Timothy O’Dowd -- BSurv(Hons)
Shaun Smart -- BSurv
Bruno Thomson-Baker -- BPhEd

Friday, 22 October 2010

Congratulations Guys

Well done to Julian Beardman, Cameron Betts and Edward Rawles on receiving Young Achievers Awards from at the NP Council this week (photo on right from the Daily News).

Also, congrats to Beaudy Barrett on getting the nod to start at 1st 5 against North Harbour tomorrow. We will all be hoping Beaudy and the rest of the FDMC guys involved can get Taranaki to the semi finals so we can watch them play again.

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Under Construction

Another photo from the Daily News archive showing construction of the old Chapel and connecting walkway.

The Chapel is now 4 teaching spaces but it seems unlikely that the concrete truck is still in service.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

New Season Of Cricket

Although the weather has struggled to shift out of winter mode the days have got longer and we now find ourselves in the cricket season.

Last weekend saw the 1st XI play the second game of the one day competition. While they were beaten by a very strong NPOB team the young fellas competed very well with GJ Pike scoring an impressive 122 which is not too shabby for a 15 year old playing premier cricket.

The FDMC Cricket blog is up an running again this year so be sure to check in to see how our teams progress as the sun (hopefully) starts to shine.

Monday, 18 October 2010

Great Start To The Week

It is always good to start the week with good news so we were delighted to hear early this morning of the birth of old boy , and FDMC staff member, Tim Stuck's second child. Tim's wife Helen has given birth to a young girl Macy Olive Stuck, who at a very healthy 9lb may well prove to be too big to play halfback in her later years. Macy also adds to old boy Bruce Stuck's growing collection of grandchildren.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Making Some Music

A photo from the Daily News archive.

We think it was taken in the early 1990's but would be happy to get more details from readers out there.

In the spirit of Metallica - Rock on fellas.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

A Saint In Our Midst

Mary MacKillop a Saint for Australia and New Zealand

On 17th October Mary MacKillop, Mother Mary of the Cross, co-foundress of the Sisters of St Joseph of the Sacred Heart, will become a Saint of the Church, when she is canonised in Rome.

Mary MacKillop was born in Melbourne in 1842, and as a member of a large and poor family she early developed a love for education, a passion for justice and a deep reliance on God in the most trying circumstances. In her early 20s she committed herself to education, focusing on the educational needs of families in rural and isolated areas in Australia, and then in New Zealand also. Her philosophy was summed up in her statement “Never see a need without doing something about it.”

In 1883 the first Sisters of St Joseph of the Sacred Heart came to New Zealand, to open a school in Temuka, and in the following ten years another nine parish primary schools were opened in rural New Zealand. By 1963, 163 Sisters were teaching in 36 primary schools and three secondary schools throughout the country.

Since then, Sisters have diversified into a range of ministries, including pastoral care in parishes, schools, family support and care services in rural and isolated communities, and educational work in various organisations.

The New Zealand Catholic Education Office, along with New Zealand’s Catholic schools, warmly congratulates the Sisters of St Joseph (affectionately referred to as the Brown Joes) for their long and illustrious contribution to the education of thousands of New Zealanders. Vision, dedication and enthusiasm are the hallmarks of good education – the Sisters can proudly stand and honestly accept this descriptive accolade.

Mary MacKillop’s Canonisation will be celebrated as follows in New Zealand:

Wellington Archdiocese: November 1, 5.30pm at Sacred Heart Cathedral.
Dunedin Diocese: November 7, 11am at Arrowtown (where a school was established in 1897).
Auckland Diocese: November 13, 11.30am St Patrick’s Cathedral.
Christchurch Diocese: November 20, 1pm at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, and November 21, 11am at St Joseph’s Church, Temuka.
Hamilton Diocese: November 28, 2pm at St Mary’s Church, Rotorua.
Palmerston North Diocese: December 4, 11am at Holy Spirit Cathedral.

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

A Dangerous Job

News yesterday that old boy and former All Black/All Black Coach John Mitchell was stabbed in his apartment in Johannesburg by intruders. John was stabbed twice but not critically injured. More details at John Mitchell Stabbed.

One wit we know suggested that it is not the first time John has been knifed it is just that this time it was not in the back!

Monday, 11 October 2010

Winners All

A good weekend for old boys with a number of them winning personal golds, with no silvers in evidence.

Congratulations to...
  • Harry Duynhoven on becoming the newest Mayor of New Plymouth with a significant majority. Harry currently has a son attending FDMC.
  • The old boys playing for Taranaki in the ITM cup who managed their eighth win of the season. The youngest amongst them, Beauden Barrett, continues to impress off the bench and is now being chased by several Super 15 franchises.
  • Paul Craycroft-Wilson for winning gold at the World Surf Lifesaving Champs in Eygpt in the beach flag event - an exotic spot for surf lifesaving.

Friday, 8 October 2010

Tuck Shop Bouncers

A good article and photos in today's Daily News on old boy Carl Carmichael preparing to play his blazer game for Taranaki tomorrow. He described his most important position of responsibility at school as Tuck Shop Bouncer! We don't recall him receiving a Colours award for his long service in that role we can recall his keen interest in the Tuck Shop itself. Alert readers from Carl's era will also note another old boy, Shane Cleaver, watching over his shoulder in the photo. Perhaps waiting his turn to buy some wedges and a doughnut?

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

From The Photo Archives

It has been a while since we shared some photos from the past with you so we shall remedy that over the next week or two with shots obtained from the Daily News archives.

Our first photo is from the late 1980's showing that FDMC has not just become a college sporting power.

Monday, 4 October 2010

Running Away

If you are looking for old boy runner Michael Aish (Roycroft) competing in the Commonwealth Games you will be disappointed. The long distance specialist, who has represented NZ at Commonwealth and Olympic Games, has changed his allegiance to the USA - where he has lived for most of his adult career. We are slightly saddened by his switch but hope the change of country brings Michael more luck in the big events.

Friday, 1 October 2010

Foundation Ideas

Thanks to those people who have so far contributed ideas on how the FDMC Foundation might operate. The following are a few so far.

  • have Old Boys clusters in different areas rather than one big "association"
  • regular reunions of year group levels - maybe 5 year groups
  • a central web site to provide information and support
  • use the web site to allow old boys to find and connect with each other
  • provide access to old photos and magazines through the web site
  • create an old boys tie
  • present all graduating students with an old boys tie at their final assembly
  • use the web site as a noticeboard for supporting those who are sick
  • tour brothers to various areas to meet with old boys groups
  • provide funding for the Lasallian community and parishes as well as the college
  • create a chat room on the web site
  • create a business directory of old boys owned businesses - support your own.

Now we are sure there are plenty more ideas out there so why not leave a comment or email us at FDMC Old Boys.

Thursday, 30 September 2010

Auckland Old Boys Gathering

Well done to Craig Reilly and Bill Kilkolly for the initiative they are showing in getting old boys together in Auckland. We think this could be an excellent model for other main centres, so if you would like to act as a contact person for your region just let us know.

The Auckland old boys are having a second get together for the year, the details being:

The next get together is planned for Wed 24th November 2010, at Chris Coleman's Bar & Grill 322 Queen Street, Auckland. Start time 6:30pm. It would be good to use this time to brief those there about the old boys foundation.

We have received a number of ideas for the foundation and will share those tomorrow but please keep them coming.

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Old Boys News

This is what we are after: news from the trenches of what you have been up to. Thanks to Allan Watt for his email. We are sure there are plenty more old boys out there who have proved to be "late developers".

Hi there.

I am an old boy now living and working in Sydney, Australia.

I attended FDMC 1970 to 1973 then dropped out late in what was then the 4th form and became a farm labourer. Subsequently after a mixed career of NZ Army followed by the NZ Police ending in the late 90’s, I became a Computer Forensic Expert and are now the Head of e.forensics, for Asia Pacific at their Head Office in Sydney.

I now have two Bachelor’s degrees, a Post Graduate Diploma in Forensic Science, a Master of Science with First Class Honours and are now completing a PhD, remotely and part time through the University of South Australia. This is also in a computer forensic related area, I am hoping to have it finished late 2013/2014.

I suppose you could say I was a late starter, but as they say it is never too late.
Love the RSS feeds.

Allan Watt

Monday, 27 September 2010

Earning Their Colours

The second Colours Assembly of the year was held recently with old boy Sam Barrett doing the honours by making the presentations. The following students received the recognition they deserved for their contributions to college life.

David Hobbs
Nick Hopkins
Tobias Looker
Samuel Wells

Jarrod Bakker
Shane Garner
George Grainger
Christian McSweeney-Novak
Troy Stevenson

Alejandro Barrientos
Julian Beardman
David Bryan
Jamie Hareb
Emmett Hurley
Ciaran King
Kurt Leuthart
Luke McCallum
Hayden Murray
Callum Schrader
Troy Stevenson
Alex Sullivan-Brown
Teihorangi Walden
Ben Wilson

Friday, 24 September 2010

Word On The Street

Our sources tell us that old boy, Head Boy, past staff member and hostel manager Andrew Murray has been appointed to the Deputy Principal's position at Sacred Heart Girl's College in New Plymouth. Congratulations to Andrew, we are sure he is looking forward to returning to sunny New Plymouth after his time in wellington.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

The FDMC Foundation

For several years now there has been talk of forming a Foundation to act as a focus for the FDMC old boys and wider community. Earlier this year a group of old boys, representing a number of generations, got together to do the initial groundwork on the Foundation. A trust deed has now been registered in the name of the FDC Old Boys Foundation but it is a bit of a mouthful so it will commonly be referred to as The FDMC Foundation.

While the Foundation will look to raise and distribute funds in support of the FDMC community it's key initial role is to act as a focus for old boys. A web site is currently being developed but we would like to hear from you as to what sorts of things you would like to see on such a site. We would also like to hear your ideas about the sorts of things the Foundation could do to further strengthen the FDMC community. Email us with your cunning plans.

The following old boys have made themselves available to help get the Foundation of the ground. Have a yarn to them about what is happening, or could happen, if you get the chance.

Kevin Murphy
Alan Melody
Peter McDonald
Chris Sole
Mark Butterworth
Sam Barrett

Friday, 17 September 2010

The Boarder's Cup

Thanks to Steve Simpson for the following report on the annual Boarder's challenge with NPBHS. A great effort and a very good result.

On Wednesday 15th September Francis Douglas Memorial College Year 9 Boarders played their annual rugby game against New Plymouth Boys High School Year 9 Boarders. Both teams are coached by their respective Year 13 Boarders and have been put through early morning fitness sessions and after school skills coaching for many months. NPBHS had won the last four encounters between the hostels. Also, when they were Year 9’s, the current FDMC year 13’s had suffered the biggest loss in the 11 year history of the game so they were keen to get a win.

NPBHS began well and were rewarded with an early try to their number 8, this was quickly followed by a penalty and then another try to lead 13 – 0 after just twenty minutes. Just before half time FDMC responded with a try, when they drove from a lineout and flanker Mitch Budge touched down. Jordie Barrett converting from near the touchline and into the wind. NPBHS leading 13 – 7 at half time. The second half started much like the first with the big Boys High forwards making good metres and eventually crashing over for another try which was unconverted, 18 - 7.

FDMC did not give in though and using the educated boot of young Barrett gained good field position and hit back with two tries of their own. The first went to centre Paddy Ford and the second to prop and captain Isaac Poole. This brought the score to 18 – 17 to NPBHS.

A bit of indiscipline saw a player from each side in the sin bin and a few minutes later another Boys High player joined them. FDMC took full advantage of this with Barrett kicking a penalty and Ford crossing for two more tries for his hat trick, one converted by Barrett. Making the final score 32 – 18 to FDMC. Mason Barnes one of the Year 13 Head Coaches said he was proud of the boys and that they showed great College spirit and fitness to come back and win.

Year 9 Squad: Steven Adams, Troy Adamson, Scott Anderson, Jonathan Annabell, Jordie Barrett, Aiden Beer, Jason Bevins, Mitch Budge, Scott Chadwick, Beauden Fleming, Paddy Ford, Ryan Hawken, Alex Kalin, Thomas Kalin, Jack Kiernan, Ryan Merson, Isaac Poole (Capt), Jordan Putt, Karlos Rangiwahia, Scott Turner, Jackson Wright.

Year 13 Head Coaches: Mason Barnes, Callum Schrader, Troy Stevenson, Reegan Corbett Assistant Coaches: Matthew Wise, Patrick Johnson, Kody Murdoch, Dorrien Neeson, Tommy Death, Sam Houghton
Manager: Jacob Abbott
Support Crew: Connor Crowley, Ben Pentelow, Jerome Aitken-Chapman

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

From The Very Far North

We received the following email today from old boy Ken Tocker. He makes a good point about the on line statistics but so long as you are visiting we don't mind where you come from.

Just to show what statistics can do, and how they might lead you astray once in a while, whereas the email address might say Bigpond leading one to think that the source is across the ditch, the location is actually a city in the Far East Russia region.

I have been working in the location for couple of years and do occasionally check up on school activities and who and what is happening. More so leading up to the last years Reunion and now following on.

Summer is coming to an end here, ice hockey season has just started and soon there will be plenty of ice in the streets and on roads as well as the local stadium. ( Check out Platinum Arena. on Google and you will see it all). While there were a few days in the summer when temperatures went over 40C this year, it was just a balance of nature to make up for the period of time that had temperatures in the -40C and mid - 30C's in the winter.

Work is never ending, the resources industries are busy as this country seeks to take advantage of its massive resources and prime location to trade with China.... like every other country is doing.

Ken Tocker'

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Well Done Fellas!

Notification of University Graduands varies from University to University - some let us know, others don't. The following list has been received from Victoria University and we congratulate our past students on the work they have put into achieving these qualifications.

Victoria University Graduands 2009-2010

  • Paul Barnes (BCA, DPACCY)
  • Zachary Beardman (BCA)
  • Miles Benton (MBMEDS)
  • Daniel Burkett (BA, LLB)
  • Matthew Carey (BCA)
  • Nicholas Carey (LLB)
  • Mitchell Day (BCA)
  • Seamus Doyle (BCA)
  • Cody Fleming (BCA, BCAHON)
  • Hamish Forsyth (BCAHON)
  • Felix Hartmann (BDES)
  • Mark Heath (MSC)
  • Ben Jagersma (BARCH)
  • Wade Moselen (BA)
  • Shaun Murphy (BARCH)
  • Abraham Naus (BA)
  • Ryan OʼByrne (BA)
  • Daniel Parker (BCA/BS)
  • James Putt (BSC)
  • Nathan Richardson (BDES)
  • David Smiley (BA)
  • Zachary Wills (BCA)

Monday, 13 September 2010

Well Done 1st XI Soccer

Thanks to Ian McGrath for this in depth report on the 1st XI soccer teams tournament week.

1st X1 Scoop the Prize - but not the one they wanted!! This years’ squad was determined to succeed at National Tournament and in doing so return themselves to a significantly higher placed ranking in the country than last season.

The week started well with a hard earned 2-1 win against an unknown Otago Boys’ team. Playing
with a fierce wind and in trying conditions, FDMC raced into a two nil half time lead, with the in form Lance Molyneaux bursting into the penalty area to sweep home the first goal from close range and Captain Shane Garner, finishing with his usual clinical approach shortly afterwards. Always in control of the game, it was the weather rather than the opposition that placed the team under pressure in the second half and despite conceding a late goal, the team held on to their lead to claim a victory and three points.

FDMC headed into the afternoon game against St Paul’s (Hamilton), knowing that another win would see them through to the next phase of the competition without a hitch or even playing the last game of the pool section. However, complacency got the better of the team from the very start and in a topsy turvy game, FDMC were edged 5-4 in what proved to be a crucial moment in defining their destiny. Having conceded an early penalty, which the opposition failed to convert, we then went behind to a succession of quick goals and basic defensive errors. Each time we conceded a goal we responded with one at the other end; Lance Molyneaux (1) and Hayden Murray (2) were the providers. 3-3 at half time and with little time to pause for breath the goals continued five minutes into the second half, with St Paul's pouncing on two opportunist
moments and further defensive lapses to extend their lead once more. Lance Molyneaux grabbed a second goal and the team's fourth mid way through the second half but despite creating
several dangerous attacking moments in the final moments, it was not to be and it proved to be an opportunity lost.

The third and final game on Day 2 between FDMC and Westlake Boys’ proved to be a clash of the titans as the two best teams in the pool fought it out. FDMC started the game needing a win to ensure a top two finish and as a very tight and highly competitive match developed, chances for both teams were at a premium. On the adjacent pitch an unlikely result was developing as Otago Boys’ raced to a shock 3-1 lead against rivals St Paul's with ten minutes remaining. The news spread fast and as a result FDMC now only needed a draw to go through on goal difference. The clock was still ticking down and with two minutes left to play Westlake Boys’ were awarded a corner kick and the unthinkable happened - a last gasp headed goal from a dangerous delivery into the six yard box, which not only sealed the game but forced FDMC out of the top two in Pool F.

Unsurprisingly, the team then proved to be too strong for the plate competition, brushing past
Kristin College 1-0 in the quarter final, Lance Molyneaux scoring to continue his fine form in front of the goal, crushing Otago Boys’ 3-0 in the semi final (Hayden Murray 2 and Sam Brailsford 1) and breezing past Rotorua Boys’ 3-1 in the final, courtesy of an early goal from Lance Molyneaux, taking his tally to an impressive 5 goals in 6 games and two late "freak goals" to Captain Shane Garner, both wind assisted and direct from corner kicks, sealing
the match and the trophy.

It was a rewarding week, which culminated in winning the Lotto Plate Trophy for the first time and an official ranking of 25th in New Zealand, continuing the trend of a top 30 finish for the third year running. Despite not hitting the heights of two years ago, it remains an impressive statistic for a moderate sized college, now able to compete with the very best sporting colleges in the country year on year.

A huge thanks to all the players, parents and sponsors who made the week a fantastic experience
and especially to Central Finance Limited for their generous and ongoing support of the team. It is really appreciated.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Social Media and Us

For the benefit of those new to this blog or those who haven't pushed the social networking envelope we include a number of links that are relevant to FDMC and students past and present.

FDMC on Facebook
FDMColdboys on Twitter
FDMC web site
FDMC on Old Friends

The social networking 'sphere moves quickly so please let us know if there are other places where FDMC has a presence.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

No Game Without The Ref

It always surprises us that more young people don't get involved with officiating in sports. While very few people can end up playing for their province or country there is a real opportunity to be involved at that level as a ref, umpire, physio, trainer or hydration technician. Old boy Andrew Kelly's older brother Richard Kelly (not blessed with an FDMC education) is doing very well at the ITM Cup level in rugby and, as the recent contact below reminds us, recent old boy William Johnston is following in his footsteps. We also believe that Josh Hickford is continuing to make himself indispensable as a cricketing support person.

I think we should acknowledge former student William Johnston who is in the Southern Zone Squad as a Canterbury referee. William will referee a number of representative rugby matches between now and the end of the season. Depending on where William is going he is making the step into the professional game of rugby as a referee.

Rest assured we will support any of you who decide to put yourself on the line, but we can't guarantee you won't get plenty of advice from the sidelines.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

We Know You Are Watching!

One of the great features of the modern internet is being able to track where people are coming from and how many are paying a visit, although we don't know who you are! The last month has seen the following statistics generated;
  • 578 visitors to the site
  • 2090 visits
  • 3182 page views
  • average time on site is 1.23 minutes
  • 20% of visits are from someone new to the site
  • 54% of visitors have us bookmarked
  • 48% of visitors use Internet Explorer, 24% use Safari
  • 59 visits came from Sydney while 38 were from Melbourne
  • 1748 visits came from New Zealand while Chile, Mexico, Switzerland, Iran and Saudi Arabia each provided 1 visitor
The point being we know you are watching but so few are contributing. Send us an email and let us know what you or your mates are up to, or give us the benefit of your thoughts on FDMC past or present. It doesn't have to be great praise, we are all big people and like to live in the real world - just like you.

Monday, 6 September 2010

What Subjects To Take?

Old Boys from the earlier years will recall that there was very little choice as to what subjects you took, and most of those were decided for you. More recent old boys will recall the confusion of having to take options from a much wider menu and then hoping that they would fit the timetable. And then there was always the dreaded question "what do you want to do when you leave school?".

For the last decade or two the school has hosted a subject selection evening to help students and parents through this process. Tonight is the 2010 version of this event. If you have students at the college the details are as follows;

Monday 6 September 2010, 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm - meeting in the theatrette

If you do not have kids going through this process then you might pause to reflect on how things turned out for you.

Friday, 3 September 2010

John Mitchell On The Move

Confirmation today that old boy, and our first All Black, John Mitchell is to leave the Western Force to coach the Lions in South Africa in next year's Super 14/15/16/?.

In searching for information on John's move we came across an excellent article on the Rugby Heaven site which does a good job of putting John the person and coach into some sort of perspective.

Click on the photo to read the article.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

In The News

Good article in today's Daily News about old boy Shane Cleaver (pictured) and his recent injury troubles.

We were also sent this little work of humour which we share with you all.

A politician was seated next to a little girl on an airplane so he turned to her and said, "Do you want to talk? Flights go quicker if you strike up a conversation with your fellow passenger."

The little girl, who had just started to read her book, replied to the total stranger, "What would you want to talk about?" "Oh, I don't know," said the congressman. "How about global warming, universal health care, or stimulus packages?" as he smiled smugly.

"OK," she said. "Those could be interesting topics but let me ask you a question first. A horse, a cow, and a deer all eat the same stuff - grass. Yet a deer excretes little pellets, while a cow turns out a flat patty, but a horse produces clumps. Why do you suppose that is?"

The legislator, visibly surprised by the little girl's intelligence, thinks about it and says, "Hmmm, I have no idea."

To which the little girl replies, "Do you really feel qualified to discuss global warming, universal health care, or the economy, when you don't know shit?" and, then she went back to reading her book.

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

A Boarding Perspective

The boarding experience at FDMC is one of the things that has changed the most over the last fifty odd years. The following is an article from the recent hostel newsletter which we thought might be of interest, especially to those who were boarding in the 60's and 70's.

At the end of each term some of our boarders at each year level complete an evaluation
form. This gives us an overall picture gauging what are we doing well in the hostel, what could we do better and giving the boys an opportunity to offer suggestions to improve on their hostel experience.

We take these evaluations very seriously. The outcomes are tabled and discussed at Supervisors’ meetings, Student Representative meetings and results are shared with the La Salle House Board. All of these groups use the information to make La Salle House a great place to live in. Below is an example of some of the responses received from last year’s evaluation:

What are we doing well at La Salle House
- Food is good
- Washing
- Communication and keeping us up to date
- Vans getting people places
- Dealing with situations quickly
- Cleaning
- Year 13 is really good

What we could do better
- Access to more sports gear
- Too much cheese
- Renovate the Year 10 and 11 dormitory
- Have a meal menu on display
- More fruit
- Better way to keep personal stuff safe
- Younger levels should have shorter study and play games every now and then
- More socials

- More nights when all year levels play games
- Don’t want changes to laundry system
- More Sky TV Channels eg. Rugby Channel
- Packed lunches – more in them
- We need more freedom

Monday, 30 August 2010

From The Newsletter

Education is not just what happens in the classroom. The following report from the latest college newsletter is a good example of how students get out and about a lot more than they used to.

Francis Douglas Memorial College participated in the Brain Bee Challenge again this year. The focus of the quiz was neuroscience. Nine students from year 11 participated in the first round that was held online at the school, on 18March. They were Scott Alexander, Joshua Connolly, Syd Hutchins, Ken Imrie, Aaron Kuriger, Jonathan Ritchie, Andreas Thangam, Daniel Sanders and Martin Hales.

To prepare for the quiz, the students were required to study course material covering various aspects of neuroscience.
Four students scored highly enough in the first round to take part in the second round of the competition as individual competitors and as members of a four person team from the College. They were Joshua Connolly, Jonathan Ritchie, Andreas Thangam and Daniel Sanders.

The students and Mrs Marshall flew up to Auckland on the day of the quiz. The second round was held at the University of Auckland on 21 July, at the Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences. The Francis Douglas students did not get through to the final rounds of the team or the individual competitions but enjoyed the day tremendously. The quiz activities were fun, yet
challenging and stimulating.

Besides the quiz, the students observed nerve cells with an electron microscope, visited a neuroscience laboratory, the anatomy museum and met with scientists. They were also able to interact with students from schools across the North Island.

Jeanne Marshall

Friday, 27 August 2010

A Sporting Week

Lots of FDMC input in the sporting news this week. The following people have been noticed in the news.

  • Staff member Peter Ingram isn't getting much batting time but is getting to talk to some great cricketers - Shewag and Pingers pictured.
  • Beaudan Barrett scored the first try for Taranaki last night and all of the FDMC boys are contributing well to the resurgent team.
  • Also noticed at the Taranaki/Otago game where a large contingent of recent old boys who were supporting the 'naki lads.
  • Edward Rawles has won his most recent event in Europe and is building well for the big events to come.
  • Old boy and current staff member Mike Ingram was the featured Weekend Warrior in Tuesday's Daily News, proving you don't have to be young, just fit and keen.
  • Well done to James Fastier, Nick Dravitzki and Ciaren King for their part in winning the Taranaki Senior Hockey competition with Northern.
  • Well done to our 1st XI hockey team who won the Taranaki Sec. Schools competition final.
We know this is only the tip of the sporting 'berg so keep up the good work next week fellas.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

A Rock Icon

Amazing how music can conjure up a place and time so strongly. Nick Sampson sent us this video link which we are sure will stimulate memories for those partying in the early eighties.

I chanced upon this...and the early summer weeks as we left the 7th form and drank and smoked heavily before splitting for different lives came to mind. Sceats was there. You might appreciate it... Nx

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Catching Up With The Brothers

The following is from a recent email from Br Michael McCabe - always good to see the brothers getting out and about and that Br Anthony is still having an impact.

Currently in Mentone Victoria. Brov Anthony was mentioned last week on the Racing TV show as telling one of the former jockeys-a presenter- when he was discussing a horse by the name of Sayahailmary was what told him in class at St Bede's Mentone. The horse came seconded that day at Caulifield. As for me I leave this Friday the 20th of August to study-Gerontology- in Canada at St Thomas University New Bruinswick for a year.

All the best to you all.

Br Michael McCabe

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Catch Up

We have not been able to access our email for the last couple of weeks so apologies to those of you who have been awaiting replies. All is set now so we start the catch up with a report on the Auckland gathering from Bill Kilkolly.

At Chris Coleman's "Brooklyn bar and Lounge" @ 322 Queen Street, Auckland on Wednesday night the 12th of August, 15 Francis Douglas old boys and Brother Declan gathered together to catch up and reminisce. A number of the old boys (and we mean old) who were there had not seen their old school mates since the mid 60's.

Everyone liked the idea of a local reunion so the next one is planned for Wednesday 24th November 2010 at the same venue. We would like to see more old boys there especially from further afield, like Hamilton & Tauranga so pencil in the date and see if you can make it. Maybe a business trip!! Please pass the word around.

If you would like your name to be added to the Old Boys contact list please e-mail your name and e-mail address to

Those who attended were:

Brother Declan
Colin Armstrong
Carey Pearce
Chris Coleman
Craig Reilly
Bill Kilkolly
Gerard Shortall
John Willoughby
Kevin Reilly
Mick Ahern
Paddy Clement
Kevin Radich
Greg Dwyer
John Pryor
Jim Martin
John Watson.

In an e-mail from Michael Ryan in Singapore he suggested that Old Boys make more use of the FDMC Old Boys page on Facebook.


Bill Kilkolly

Friday, 20 August 2010

Sign Of The Times III

The third of our out takes from the College newsletter. "Wollies" has always played a part in the FDMC experience, especially for boarders, but in these health conscious times we do try to encourage students to "eat well". Not always with success.

The Supermarket
We still have a lot boys heading to the supermarket to buy lunch in the morning. Whist there are
some obvious economic advantages to this, the quality of the goods the boys are buying is concerning. Often fizzy drinks, sweets and chocolates are being purchased. Please check what your son is buying for lunch. A couple of sandwiches from home is always the best option.

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Sign Of The Times II

Keeping track of student attendance has never been easier, or more technical. The following notice from the college newsletter may give some old boys pause for thought over some of their unscheduled days off.

The Ministry of Education has funded a texting and e-mail service to notify you if your son is not in class. Every morning at approximately 9:15 an attendance check is done. With this system the office will instruct our student management programme to contact all parents by text or e-mail that their son is not at the College. If you receive a text and know where your son is please notify us at the office so we can code his absence appropriately. Could you please notify
the office if your cell phone number has changed so that we can update our records.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Another Sad Loss

News this morning of the sudden death of old boy Te Miringa (Milton) Hohaia at the age of 58. The Daily News has a feature article on Te Miringa. He is another example of how our old boys contribute to their own communities in such a wide range of ways.

Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends. May he rest in peace.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Signs Of The Times

Over the next couple of days we will post some information articles from the latest college newsletter. It may be of interest to "older" old boys how new developments have impacted on the way we do things at FDMC. Personal cell phones are a far cry from asking the ladies at the office if they could ring your mum.

Cellphone Use

There has been some confusion over the use of cell phones lately. Please read the section on Cell
Phones in the front of the student diary for a full explanation of the system we use. Briefly, we
have no problem with cell phones in the College as long as the boys abide by some common sense rules. Mainly, have them switched off during class times and put away. They may use them before school at interval, lunch time and after school. If the phones are seen during class time or in the library they will be put in the College safe and re- turned the following day if a parent has contacted us by phone or note. There are phones available at the College office if the boys need to use them.

Monday, 16 August 2010

Wet In The Sudan!

Br Bill's latest post on the DLS blog is well worth a read. It seems that it does rain in the Sudan, something that adds a little variety to the Sudanese experience.