Meet the Director – Mr Mike Silcock
What was your first involvement in boarding?
It is often said of boarding that, if successful, it creates the environment of a "home away from home". This was certainly my experience as I left for boarding school at the age of seven. My time at boarding school has shaped my pathway that has ultimately led to my role today as Director of Boarding at St Patrick's College. Throughout both my personal and professional life my decision making has been guided by those who held the responsibility of my care whilst at boarding school and I will forever be in their debt for the wonderful experience they afforded me. My aim is to give the boarders in my care the same experience.
What makes boarding at SPC unique?
Community is the hallmark of boarding at St Patrick's College and underpins its uniqueness. With boarding numbers at 70 and boarders joining our community from across Victoria, interstate and internationally St Patrick's College boarding celebrates our faith, diversity and our inclusivity. It is important our boarders acknowledge the privilege that is afforded them through their enrolment and give back to others less fortunate at every opportunity that presents itself.
What does it mean to be an Old Collegian?
To be an Old Collegian is to be a member of a lifelong community that supports and celebrates all the accomplishments of its members and their families.
Does St Patrick's College prepare young men for life?
St Patrick's College's message is a clear one - "raising fine boys to the status of great men" - this speaks volumes for what the College does to prepare our students. Both through the College day and within the boarding community our students are taught the importance of liberating education, inclusive community, justice and solidarity and gospel spirituality . St Patrick's College provides boys with valuable opportunities to develop personal qualities and life-long friendships.
Do SPC Boarders do well academically?
Whilst the motivations of our Boarders joining us do vary all understand the primary focus placed on their academic journey. Whilst their education at St Patrick's College is a holistic one emphasis will always be directed to their academic pursuits. Our Housemasters coordinate our Boarders' academic studies and place significant attention on regular communication between our Boarding staff and teaching staff. Within the Boarding Community schedule there are two supervised study sessions. Whilst the management of these sessions falls to the Boarding staff, our Boarders are supported in their endeavours by both volunteer pre-service teachers from the local universities and by our Yr13 study tutors. Boarder reports are also written each semester that provide continuity and aid in the academic support provided to our Boarders. Finally, our new Boarding Precinct provides each Boarder with the optimum study space should they wish to continue their studies beyond the scheduled times.
What level of care is provided in the boarding precinct?
St Patrick's College Boarding is a home away from home, a place of safety and security, fun and friendship. We promote an inclusive community and welcome opportunities when parents, guardians, families and friends can engage, visit and support their sons as often as they can. We celebrate and embrace diversity, with each Boarder bringing their own unique story to enrich the lives of all within our Community.
The Director of Boarding, Housemasters, Senior GAP Tutors and Junior GAP Tutors oversee the total boarding program and are ultimately responsible for the welfare of all Boarders at the College. Our residential Boarding staff are also ably supported by our Laundry Coordinator, College caterers (Chartwells) and College cleaners. Finally, our Headmaster is also residential and, with his family, regularly joins the Boarding Community.