House of Assembly: Wednesday, April 10, 2024


Trinity College

The Hon. A. PICCOLO (Light) (15:38): Today I would like to share with the chamber a story of remarkable achievement in our region, a story that embodies the spirit of community and the power of education. This year, Trinity College celebrates its 40th anniversary, a milestone that marks four decades of unwavering commitment to nurturing young minds and fostering inclusive excellence.

Last week I had the honour of celebrating this milestone, and earlier in the week I also witnessed the official opening of Trinity College Roseworthy, the sixth school under the Trinity banner. It was interesting to hear college head, Mr Nick Hately, in his speeches explain why they have built a sixth school. In the Book of Matthew, chapter 5, he summarised it as saying: a collective responsibility to do good things, about taking opportunities to put some genuine light into the world. What could put more light into the world than a new school? The new addition is not just a building; it is a beacon of hope, a place where education shines bright, illuminating the path through our electorate's future leaders.

The Trinity journey began modestly in 1984, with just 27 students in a small church hall in Gawler and, today, 17,555 students have called Trinity 'home', with 4,265 current enrolments. I had the good fortune to be a councillor on the Munno Para district council when planning approval was granted for the college to build on the current Evanston South site. My two sons Raffaele and Stefan completed their education at Trinity College. This growth is a testament to their mantra of maximising quality opportunities, so kids can find their passion and combine this with personal attention in a safe, caring and Christian environment.

It is the pioneering parents and students who have put their trust into Trinity that have made the college what it is today. I think Mr Hately summed it up perfectly when he said: 'Students will remember how schools made them feel long after the lessons are forgotten.' Like myself, board Chair Dr Ken Heath spoke about how he was blown away by the state of art facilities on display across the new Roseworthy campus.

While those facilities can sway prospective families to join, it is the bravery of the first families who entrusted their children to a school that emerged from a dusty paddock, housed in parent-made log cabin classrooms, furnished with hand-me-down desks, and rocks for play. The leap of faith paved the way for the flourishing institution Trinity College has become today. The school's success is also due to the collective efforts of many, from the dedicated board and staff, the support across all levels of government, the visionary designers and builders and the First Nations community, whose culture of equity and respect the college strives to uphold.

I heard stories of remarkable things in the community, but almost everyone, especially if you are a cricket fan, has heard the names of two particular individuals: Travis Head and Ryan Harris. Only 466 cricketers have been fortunate to wear the baggy green in Australian test cricket, and Trinity has produced two talents to do so. Despite their commitments, they periodically return to Trinity to feature in the headmaster's first XI match.

The stories of the people and families that have built Trinity College are a testament to the community it has grown. The Thorne family not only had four children attend the college, but Helen and Rupert Thorne served on the college board for 15 years between them, Rupert as Chair for 11 years. Rupert also served on the Trinity College Foundation for many years, and the pair established the Spirit of Trinity Fund. Scores of students have had their education and personal needs met through the fund to help them on their schooling journey and deliver the experiences they have lived. It is in honour of this commitment that the Roseworthy library is now known as the Thorne Library.

Rick Jarman commenced at Trinity College in 1993 at Trinity Blakeview before becoming the foundation principal at Trinity Gawler River School in 2000, a role he continues to relish as Trinity's longest serving principal. His passion for the college's co-curricular offerings, service on numerous communities and helping design the Roseworthy School will forever be remembered, as children grow up playing on the newly named Jarman Oval at the Gawler River school's main oval.

I commend Trinity College and its staff, students and parents both past and present for their contributions in helping develop this school which thrives to give children in our electorate a great education. I will take a moment to say that I know Trinity College is not the only school in our electorate and that we are fortunate to have multiple public and non-government schools available to residents in our region.

I had the pleasure to work for Trinity College from 2000 to 2006 as college business manager. Since 2006, I have had the pleasure to serve this electorate and undertake multiple school visits, sit in on classes and conduct parliamentary tours. I am pleased to say that, with the knowledge and passion our youth have shown over the years, both during their schooling and in their spare time, the future is certainly bright in Light.