My latest publication is the forty-year story of Flinders Christian Community College in Tyabb, Victoria. I was invited to co-author this volume with my long time friend and colleague, Valerie Mason; we both were heads of campus in the college and retired in 2008. It was a wonderful opportunity to research and collaborate to write the history of three campus over four decades.
The college was founded by people with a vision for Christian education for young people on the Mornington Peninsula, and has grown to be a vibrant educational community with nearly 2000 students, a large staff and modern buildings and facilities.
We chose to represent the voices of students, staff and parents by canvassing memories and thoughts about the school. These form a large part of the text and bring immediacy and authenticity to the narrative. Building on the previous history of the college from 1983-1994, written by Mrs Avril Howard and titled Born to Bear Fruit, we first painted a word picture of the school as it is today. Our goal was to show that while the college looks very different now, it still encapsulates the founding values of Christian schooling.
After a summary of those early years, the next three chapters chronicle the establishment and development over the years of each of the three campuses at Tyabb, Carrum Downs and Traralgon. Each story has its distinctives, but all follow the path of building Christ-centred curriculum and programs.
The remaining chapters are topical, including cameos, stories and memories of the facets that make up educational experience, and those who contribute to it. Camps, music, curriculum, leaders, sport, mission and many others are described with words and many vibrant photos and explore just some of what school life is about.
The college provided the many photos and published the volume in a beautiful glossy coffee table format, but have made it available to all as a free e-book on the school website. It can be accessed with this link:
May this 40th-anniversary publication be a testimony that honours the aspirations of Reverend Johnston and inspires those who follow to continue carrying a baton of hope. Following this sentiment, gratitude must be expressed to the authors of this publication. They epitomise our community’s culture and love with humble hearts and tenacious commitment. As former Heads of Campus, Valerie Mason and Jeanette Woods have exceeded their scope to bring vitality to the history of the College. In the wake of their transformative legacy within the College, they have captured the intricacies and given words to a narrative that speaks of God’s grace in all its forms.
Cameron Pearce, Executive Principal January 2023