The South Australian Catholic Primary Schools Sports Association (SACPSSA) scheduled six Carnivals in 2014. Swimming, Athletics, Netball, Cross Country, Touch Football and Handball.
Approximately 14,000 children (actual figures 13,904) participated in the six carnivals with 21 entries from Country Schools namely Millicent, Port Augusta, Peterborough, Barmera, Renmark, Murray Bridge, Jamestown, Gladstone, Wallaroo, Loxton, Yorketown and Clare. Generally all Carnivals ran to schedule with a strong nucleus of dedicated teachers from the SACPSSA Executive and Auxiliary Member’s lists.
In Term 1 SACPSSA ran 9 Swimming Carnivals. The two usually held at Burnside Swimming Centre, were this year held at the Marion Swimming Centre in Park Holme due to Burnside being closed for renovations. 6 at Magill Campus and 1 at Westminster School. The latter catered for the Tier I schools (Reception to Year 5). One record was broken and10 new records were set by the Tier One schools. Approximately 1200 swimmers participated from 60 schools which is about the same number as 2013.The nine winning schools were: St Ignatius, Rostrevor, Wynn Vale, Stirling, Nazareth, Brooklyn Park, Goodwood, Norwood and Glengowrie. All venues provided excellent facilities and we were fortunate to have good weather for all carnivals. Lisa stood in for Jessica Grbin as Swimming Coordinator’s Assistant and gave Ric invaluable help.
The Athletics Carnival is the highlight of the SACPSSA year. All carnivals ran smoothly with 3 records broken and the standard of competition continued to rise. Narelle Dew from Loreto and Darren Elliott from Marymount maintained the high standard of previous years, drawing praise from teachers, parents and children and positive comments from the staff at SANTOS Stadium. In 2015 increased attention will be given to Pentathlon Athletes to further the interest of this event.
Term 2 saw the Netball Carnival where 50 schools nominated a total of 328 teams or 3280 children. Despite the weather forecast the rain kept away and the carnival ran smoothly as usual. Netball always draws large numbers of schools and the number of umpires is never a problem with parents, teachers and senior students from St. Mary’s College and other schools fulfilling that role. In the absence of Rosie Petrilli her Assistant Kristen Victory, from Star of the Sea School at Henley Beach, was responsible for the organisation of the carnival. Great job Kristen. Thank you. Netball SA provided the indoor courts on one day and maintained invaluable assistance throughout the three days.
In Term 3 the Cross Country was held at the PAC Oval in the city over a 2 km course. The new programme catered for 2509 children who competed over the altered course with roadside barriers forming a neat and effective barrier for spectators. In 2015 this innovation will be increased further into the course. Star droppers at the Finish area will be disposed of and new fence barriers will be provided for greater safety. The professional teams comprising the Executive and Auxiliary of SACPSSA, ensured the children had a memorable day with new ‘Walkie Talkies’ a proven success. St John Ambulance was on hand as was Sports Trainer Services stationed at either end of the 2 km course and in a third marquee erected midway the course to cater more efficiently for those in need of assistance.
Term 3 Touch Carnival, extended to four days, excellently organised by Paul Panos and Lisa Mahoney was a huge success and the interest in Touch Football continues unabated with 328 teams from 42 schools and 3280 children competing over the four days. This is a massive increase of nearly 1000 children over last year’s figures. South Australian Touch Association (SATA) providing assistance with referees supported by school children from Rostrevor, Prospect, St Michael’s and SHC. Cabra College and Rosary School Prospect won exciting boys and girls finals of the Championship competition for Year 7 children, each final employing the Drop Off rule. The new innovation by Lisa of awarding Community Award Certificates to those people who refereed was another indication of the enthusiasm shown by Lisa and Paul. Once again we were blessed with fine weather. I think someone up there likes what we are doing.
The Handball Carnival scheduled for Term 4 is held at Cabra College under the guidance of Flavio Zandona and his very competent High school students. At the time of writing 19 schools have nominated with 136 teams comprising 963 students. This sport is increasing in interest in the Catholic system as it is a fast, running catching and throwing game easily managed for schools as all it requires is a netball/basketball/tennis court on which to play. At this rate of increased participation the Handball Carnival may have to be extended to 4 days.
SACPSSA through the guidance of Mark Bowman from Lockleys and able assistants Travis Henderson, Toby Priest and Dr Shane Pill organised 3 Professional Development days in conjunction with ACHPER. The focus was on leadership utilising senior students mentoring early years’ students. These days have proved to be of great benefit and value to teachers in the development of their PE teaching skills and always well received and enthusiastically embraced by teachers from the Catholic System and State schools. Lisa and Travis spoke at an Executive meeting of the Student Driven Leadership Programme which they are involved in with ACHPER. A Primary Years Conference organised by SACPSSA and ACHPER is planned for September to be held at Flinders University offering best practice strategies for PE Teachers.
This year SACPSSA Executive has invited Josh Page to represent SACPSSA on the SAPSASA Committee, Rick Mackereth to act as Cross Country Coordinator, Jaimie Mulcahy, David Fairlie, James Goldy, Simon Lovett, and Justin Marsh to join SACPSSA as Auxiliary members. Simon and Justin will work on the development of the Modified Soccer programme.
Finally what would we do without the Treasurer Kathy Cilento from Sacred Heart and Principal’s Representative Craig Fosdike. These two people together with those teachers who assisted throughout the year go to make an outstanding team all dedicated to the development in sport and Physical Education of our children in South Australia. CONGRATULATIONS.