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The VicSRC Congress

On Wednesday 8th to Friday 10th of July, Maddison Bassal and Victoria Vassallo attended the annual Victorian SRC Congress, which was held at  Ormond College in Melbourne. The cold weather and early morning frustration was soon forgotten as the excitement of the next few days began to stir amongst the crowd of 170 student leaders from schools across the state. The idea of Congress surrounds one main theme – student voice. It is understood that we as students have the right to an education and in doing so, deserve the opportunity to speak out and make changes to aspects of school life that affect us. It is because of this reason that these student leaders join together to discuss issues, previously decided at earlier congresses, to which are put before the Congress in a parliamentary-style debate. The issues ranged from a variety of topics including curriculum, school funding, school facilities and bullying. Two other topics included school culture and student-teacher relationships.
In the group school culture, it was brought to our attention that discrimination in schools has increased particularly against the different races and cultures that make up our diverse community. To reduce the discrimination and isolation, the group created an action pitch with a  short film competition that included all schools in Victoria, to portray how the schools appreciated the multiculturalism within the community. 

In the group for student-teacher relationships, it was decided that students believe that having a positive  relationship with their teachers is important in academic progression, as well as the idea that there should be a mutual respect and support demonstrated from both parties. To ensure this occurs, the group put together an action pitch consisting of workshops that could be presented to teachers to help them learn new ways of interacting with their students. 

It was not all work as a Harry Potter themed dinner was provided for us on the first night, to which we were encouraged to dress up as characters from the world acclaimed film. From Harry to Hermione, to even Hedwig the owl, the Harry Potter spirit carried through to the second night where we participated in a Harry Potter Wide game, which involved activities including potions and quidditch. 

Overall, the three days at Congress proved to be very rewarding and insightful, as we were encouraged to implement new ideas into our school. On a personal note, we were inspired to not be afraid to speak out and be a voice in our school and community, as exemplified in  1Timothy 4:12, “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.”
Maddison Bassal and Victoria Vassallo 
Deputy Liturgy Captain and Deputy Social Justice Captain 

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