The St Margaret’s community comprising students, staff and parents gathered at QPAC’s Concert Hall on Tuesday 12 November for the 122nd annual Speech Night and prize giving ceremony.
It was a special evening recognising the achievements of students and staff throughout the year as well as an opportunity to formally farewell the graduating Year 12 students.
During the proceedings, which were live streamed and watched by 461 viewers in Australia and around the world, Principal Ros Curtis gave an address which reflected on the school’s history and highlighted the consistency of the St Margaret’s narrative, or the ‘St Margaret’s Spirit’, from the school’s inception through to today.
She highlighted the fact that themes like community, academic scholarship and the school’s six core values of courage, passion, spirit, faith, integrity and respect, are commonly and consistently reflected throughout the school’s 125-year story.
Ms Curtis concluded with these parting words to the graduating cohort: “You are part of a very special community, a spirit and a faith which has adapted yet remained unique and identifiable for 125 years. It is worthy of celebration and respect. There are over 7000 Past Students out there who have benefitted from a St Margaret’s education and now Year 12, as you are graduating you are faced with a choice. You can allow the school motto, mission and values to be a foundation of your future endeavours or not. I encourage you to choose wisely and enjoy and build on the foundation your parents have provided you with your education. May you be happy and cheerful, just like those early St Margaret’s students and much like the current ones.”
Chair of School Council Alison Quinn gave an address reflecting on the school’s highlights and achievements of 2019. She spoke of the school’s record enrolment numbers, continued excellent achievements in NAPLAN, 2018 OP results and the stellar performances in the sporting arena or on the stage. She concluded with a quote from the Sisters of the Society of the Sacred Advent stating the aim of the St Margaret’s community is a simple one – “to set the feet of the future generations on the right path”.
The guest speaker was Old Girl and lawyer Caitlin McConnel (’07) who shared her journey since graduation which has been one of persistence and determination, attributes our departing seniors will no doubt harness. She also spoke of the power of the St Margaret’s network and the opportunities that have been presented as a result.
School Captains Isabella Corby-Bakkelund and Ella Leavey presented an inspiring speech interwoven with stories of our students and what they have achieved this year.
Award recipients included secondary teacher Cassandra Argent who received the Staff Award for Excellence in Teaching and Learning whilst Elise Martin received the Staff Award for Service to the School Community.
Elizabeth Fowler was awarded The Raymond Rees Award for Dux as well as The University of Queensland Achievement Award whilst Hilary McKie received the Proxime Accessit to the Dux.
Megan Roxburgh was awarded the Ausenco Engineering Scholarship and Kelsey Booth the prestigious Old Girls’ Prize.
Whilst the speeches and presentations gave an opportunity to reflect on the 2019 year, so too did the highlights video which captured many memories made throughout the year.
Guests also enjoyed performances by ensembles and choirs showcasing the dedication and musical talent of many of our students.
St Margaret’s wishes to congratulate all of those students who received awards at the 2019 Speech Night and bids a fond farewell to our graduating Year 12 students as they leave the school gates for the final time in pursuit of an exciting new chapter in their lives.