The Staines Legacy
As a College, we seek to continue the ethos of the Staines family through providing holistic Christian education.
Our College is named in honour of Graham Staines and his sons, Philip and Timothy who were killed in 1999 as they served our God in the poor and rural areas of India. Like others before them, and since, the Staines family were extending God's mercy to poor communities, and communities affected by Leprosy. Graham and his wife Gladys grew up in the Ipswich-Beaudesert area.
As a College, we seek to continue the ethos of the Staines family through providing holistic Christian education, and by developing a culture of service to others. We are honoured to have Gladys visit our College when other responsibilities enable her that opportunity.
In 2001 the idea of a Christian School was conceived for the new suburb of Springfield, and in 2004 an Early Learning Centre was established at Springfield Lakes.
The College commenced in 2005 on leased land in Springfield with Mrs Joy Robson as the Teacher in Charge. We had 35 students, and three classes were held in A Block (a relocated nursing home building). We operated with the administrative support of Groves Christian College.
In 2006, Mr Norton Sands was appointed to lead the College for a start in 2007. A second building was purchased (B Block). Our Year 7 and 8 students regularly travelled to a sister school, Livingstone Christian College, Ormeau for specialist secondary subjects.
By the end of 2007, we had 65 students from Prep to Year 9, and eight staff. After several attempts to secure a permanent home, we purchased land on School Road in Redbank Plains.
In 2008 we purchased C Block to accommodate additional secondary students. We purchased a 33-seat bus to transport students to Groves Christian College, Kingston for specialised secondary subjects. We commenced negotiations for the sealing of School Road to our land in Redbank Plains. We sold our Child Care Centre to help facilitate our impending move.
The milestone of 100 students from Prep to Year 10 was achieved in 2009. Extensive planning for moving and establishing our permanent College site in Redbank Plains was the focus of the year. We 'cut ties' with Groves Christian College, and we concluded the year with 120 students.
At the end of the year, we moved all buildings and equipment. We commenced a hectic seven week construction phase and operated a temporary office at Fernbrooke. Our site was crawling with workers, volunteers and staff. It was an amazing picture of unity and provision from God.
After much prayer, planning, and hard work, College life began in Redbank Plains, amazingly on schedule. In 2010 we leased D and E Blocks, and constructed a shed for Design and Technology. We hired some temporary facilities and created playgrounds for our primary students, thanks to some government grants. We had sewerage, but we did not have permanent power or water from the street. We relied on generator power and trucked in water until School Road and services were upgraded. Planning for the road was complex, and progress was slower than what we wanted. Phone and internet connections were challenging.
We commenced at Redbank Plains with 178 students, and our staff numbered more than 30. We constructed Phase 1 of our Specialist Learning Centre (SLC) and our Secondary students no longer had to travel to sister colleges for specialist subjects. We purchased a 55-seat bus, bringing our fleet to four. Road access still involved 1.4 km of dirt, which presented challenges our community took in its stride.
We commenced 2011 with more than 200 students and 39 staff. Secondary lessons began in the SLC. Three further milestones occurred throughout the year: 150 Primary students, and 100 Secondary students, with enrolment exceeding 250. 2011 was our first year with Year 12 students. This meant we had our first College Captains, our first Queensland Core Skills (QCS) Test, first Formal and first Graduation ceremony.
By the end of 2011, we could see significant progress on the road completion and were grateful for the patience of our community, and the willingness of GW Civil to work with us to ensure safety and completion. In 2011 we finally went on to mains power and permanent town water.
We started 2012 with more than 300 students and 50 staff. Mr Nick Makin joined us as our first Deputy Principal to lead Teaching & Learning.
We proudly supported students from a range of cultural backgrounds and those with learning needs. A visit from one of our Federal Senators encouraged us for our outstanding example of effective care and support in learning.
The 12th of June is a day we will not forget easily, as, on this date, the road was finally sealed all the way!
Our endeavours at providing and supporting students to achieve vocational pathways and not just university entrance were recognised by industry and Federal Government.
Applications to establish a Trade Training Centre (TTC) commenced in 2009 and we were delighted to be awarded a $4.5 million grant in partnership with sister schools Groves Christian College and Livingstone Christian College.
Class of 2012
Our Trade Training Centre (TTC) was completed in 2013 and we employed a tradesman as our trainer. A number of practical improvements (such as our ANZAC Garden and entrance) were developed by students and serve as a continuing legacy for students learning.
Student numbers continued to grow at a steady and significant rate, exceeding national and state averages. Upper Primary (Years 4-6) reached 100 students, with 360 students across all year levels.
As an expression of loving others, we commissioned our first Mission Team to Nepal, with Chaplain Peter Jenyns, Mrs Joy Robson, and Mr Rob Price as our key mission leaders.
We achieved an enrolment of 367, with our primary intake exceeding 200 for the first time. During this year we saw a much-needed expansion to the carpark and the completion of the first purpose build primary bock.
At the end of the year, we sent out our first mission team. They supported the work of Christian schools and hostels in Nepal.
Class of 2013
In 2014 we added an oval, built an interim resource space, a year 7 class, and constructed a Kindergarten so that from the start of 2015 we would offer education from 3 years until they completed Year 12.
Our mission team comprised a trip to support a sister school in Cooktown and further the work in Nepal. Most significant was the fundraising venture of our Year 12 which supported the work of Destiny Rescue- a group committed to providing relief for girls trapped in sexual slavery.
Other building works included the development of our first permanent Primary facility- our Primary Learning Centre (PLC B), and the creation of a classroom next to our Home Economics kitchens- a State Government provision that coincided with the introduction of Year 7 to High School.
Continuing efforts to develop student leaders started to show benefits for the College Community. This year was the first year our Year 12 students chose to raise funds as part of their formal, creating a legacy gift for others not as fortunate as themselves.
Service projected continued to develop with practical discipleship activities as part of 'Blokes Group', and our Year 10's completing a short-term service trip to Warwick.
Class of 2014
From 2015 we offered education from K-12. In that year our Student Leader efforts became a model for future years to follow. It was also our largest and most academic group of students to date, each pushing themselves and others to improve.
We were able to start using our Primary Learning Centre (PLC B). Within six months of opening the Kindy, we were audited and deemed to have Exceeded National Standards. We are grateful to our first Kindergarten director, Mrs Sue Petersen for her leadership.
This year we started conducting our Secondary chapel services at a local church as we did not have enough space to create an effective atmosphere. We are very grateful for the practical support and encouragement of Shiloh Church.
Drama was added to the Secondary curriculum in Years 8-10. We excitedly awaited the construction of a drama room that could be used as a Chapel space for up to 100 guests. We also completed an extension to the SLC.
Our plans to return to Nepal were changed by a large earthquake. We did however get to support our sister schools in Warwick and Cooktown.
Class of 2015
In 2016 we excitedly started the year with worship in our new Chapel and drama space. The building work for the year was the construction of four new primary classrooms- PLC A, specifically designed for our future Prep students. A landscape plan was developed by teachers to facilitate the intentional development of play-based learning.
Student mission trips to Thailand and Warwick were significant expressions of loving others, and so too, was the inaugural skate night to raise funds for missions.
Possibly the most significant highlight of the year was the creation of IMPACT- a scaled-up version of our former celebration of the Arts. The event involved food and artistic presentations from the diversity of cultures in our College. We represent more than 40 nationalities.
Class of 2016
In 2017, our second Deputy, Mr Adam Marsh joined our College with a focus on Character Development. We again experienced greater than national average growth. The cultural mix of students became even greater than before with more than 260 students having parents born overseas. Most international families come from African countries, then Pacific Islands, and then Asia.
Class of 2017
2018 was special for a number of reasons. We commenced work in developing a Community Hub, a place where parents and the wider community can come together to be supported and assisted in their personal and family journeys. We continue to receive and value federal government support for this significant work. We entered the national Wakakirri competition for the second year and received 5 awards that reflected the artistic and community efforts that are our community. The opening of our Primary Sports Centre was conducted as an Easter service. We concluded the year with 500 students.
Class of 2018
This year saw the introduction of the New Queensland Certificate of Education, and the final year of the OP system for Year 12. We achieved the milestones of over 300 students in Primary, and over 200 students in Secondary. The movie ‘The Least of These: The Graham Staines Story’ was released in the cinema, this was a fantastic opportunity to take all our students in Years 7-12 to reconnect with this story of grace.
Our Year 10 students continued the tradition of visiting Warwick Christian College as part of their service project, which included practical work around the College and running Chapel services. We also entered an exciting partnership with Compassion Australia allowing Pastoral Care classes to begin sponsoring children.
This year we held our first Primary musical ‘Pirates of the Curry Bean,’ which was a brilliant performance.
This was a challenging year. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we had to do many things differently, including online chapels, events, and parent information evenings.
The year provided us the opportunity to emphasise mental health and wellbeing through our ‘Wellbeing Wednesdays’ and we had the opportunity to try new things in our teaching and learning as we have navigated the unknown regarding lockdowns and ‘learning from home’.
While we were able to participate in as many sports, arts, and cultural activities as we would have liked, these restrictions have helped us appreciate what we have had, and we look forward to returning to ‘normal’ operations.
This year we reached the milestone of 600 students. We continued to seek opportunities to serve our local community. This year we introduced the ‘SMC Sleepout’ which helped raise funds to support the Salvation Army’s work with our homeless community, and students completed a community project, collecting donations of food for the Redbank Plains Community Centre. Our Compassion Project has continued to grow, with 11 sponsor children in Secondary.
Our Primary students again participated in the Wakakirri Story and Dance competition, receiving a number of awards, and our Secondary students did an amazing job in our first Secondary Musical ‘The Little Mermaid’.
This year we introduced our Music Academy for students wanting to learn an instrument, and the FUSE Cup, an e-sports competition, with our Year 7-8 team coming second in the State finals.
Students coming into our community are growing in confidence and ability, and many are starting to discover the plan that God has for their lives.
We focus now on building the future of our young people. Our focus remains on presenting Jesus Christ and developing values for life. We thank each of you for the part you have played, and we encourage you to come and join in our Community.
To be continued...