A balanced school education is essential in helping your son to develop as a well-rounded individual with a wide range of interests and knowledge.
Parade offers a rich range of cultural, sporting, outdoor and community activities that provide opportunities for creative expression and physical and social achievements.
The annual musical production is a highlight of the year and we also have a long tradition of young sportsmen proudly wearing the purple, green and blue. Boys also directly experience the world outside school with community projects, retreats and
overseas trip opportunities to Japan and Italy.
Music studies are a core part of Parade’s strong focus on co-curricular activities. There is a dedicated Music Department building as well as the state-of-the-art Rivergum Theatre (with new Kawai grand piano). These are complemented by a recording studio and the latest music software and equipment to assist learning across all year levels. Our music students have every opportunity to experience the joy of making music in all its forms.
A compulsory semester of Music in year 7 leads on to carefully structured Music elective subjects from year 8. Options at VCE include Music Performance (Solo), Music Industry Skills (MIS) and Music Styles (offered by correspondence through the Distance Education Centre of Victoria).
Students may take private lessons at an additional cost with specialist instrumental teachers on Voice, Flute, Clarinet, Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone, Piano, Guitar, Bass Guitar, Double Bass and Drums. Music Theory lessons are also available. These lessons take place during class time on a rotating timetable. Music lockers are available for students to store their instruments safely.
Students are encouraged to participate in the Bands Program. These ensembles include the multiple award winning Big Band, Funksters, Classical Ensemble, Senior Rock Band and the Allstars (a Year 7 and 8 training band). Concerts are held regularly throughout the year, with highlights being the Big Band’s annual tour to the Mt. Gambier Jazz Festival and participation in the Melbourne School Bands’ Festival at Monash University. The "Carols Under the Cross" concert each December has been a beloved event at Parade for many
years. Numerous excursions and intra school events occur on a regular basis with Parade music students much in demand to perform for school liturgies and assemblies, at primary schools and nursing homes. Students participate in the ACC Music Workshops and the biannual ACC Accent on Music Concert held in Hamer Hall.
The music staff bring a wealth of experience both as music educators and practitioners in the music industry as performers, composers and sound technicians to their roles as mentors to young musicians at Parade, Bundoora.
Nurturing strong ties with our local community
Parade prides itself on nurturing and maintaining strong links with our local community, in particular with those who are often overlooked such as the elderly and socio-economically disadvantaged. For more than 15 years, the Community Action Program has evolved to become an integral part of the College curriculum for all Year 10 students, and indeed the wider school community; encompassing staff and students from all year levels as well as parents and local businesses.
A strong culture has developed within the College that promotes service to the wider community as being something that our boys do without question or complaint. We are delighted to say that they do it extraordinarily well. Whether it be donating blood as part of the Red Cross “Blood For Life” program, tutoring refugee students in St Albans or donning an apron for an early morning stint on Eddie’s Big Brekkie Van, Parade students are actively taking part in the wider community, and forging the next generation of socially aware and responsible young men.
Year 10 Community Action Program
This is a compulsory activity for all year 10 students, who spend one afternoon a week for one term of the year visiting groups in the local community.
Parade’s extensive and celebrated Community Action Program started with the Year 10 program, run in conjunction with the Red Cross Community Action program, which provides diaries, certificates, speakers and a way of connecting our students to a national and international voluntary organisation with which they can identify.
Students spend one afternoon each week for a term visiting nursing homes and special developmental schools. They play games, plant out vegetable gardens, run art and craft projects and even entertain with their myriad musical abilities! Prior to their initial visit, the students take part in a half day commissioning ceremony, which includes guest speakers to help them prepare for the challenges they may experience. Teaching staff regularly visit the students at their placements and are in constant contact with staff at the facilities to ensure the boys are performing and receiving any support they require.
Eddie's Big Brekkie Van
Our much celebrated and popular Brekkie Van program is now in its 8th year of operation. The Brekkie Van team rolls up its sleeves every Tuesday morning during term time to cook breakfast for members of the local West Heidelberg/Olympic Village community who may otherwise go without. The Brekkie Van program was honoured to win the 2007 Whittlesea Leader School Community Award.
An ambitious idea borne out of an acute sense of social justice, the Brekkie Van is one of Parade’s most popular Community Action initiatives. Early every Tuesday morning during school term, a small team of volunteer students and staff leave Parade in a mini-van laden with donated breakfast goodies – bacon, eggs, sausages, bread, tea, coffee and Milo. The Olympic Village Park, next to the local primary school in West Heidelberg, was chosen as an appropriate location for the van to operate from, and before long children on the way to school, parents and even some nearby residents are warmly welcomed to a BBQ breakfast of bacon and eggs cooking on the from 7.15am onwards.
The residents of West Heidelberg have come to look forward to the Brekkie Van’s arrival each week and friendships have developed with the young children. What started as a simple initiative to provide breakfast to local children and families has turned into something so much more – two seemingly disparate communities have become one, and they are both all the better for it. Without exception, the Parade students who have volunteered their time on the Brekkie Van have had their eyes opened to the plight of others less fortunate than themselves, and have gone home with greater appreciation for the comfort in which they live, as well as a more empathetic view of the wider world.
Parade gratefully acknowledges the support of a number of very generous local businesses whose contributions each week make the BrekkieVan possible: Baker’s Delight Bundoora; Growers Fresh Fruit & Veg Greensborough; Original Juice Company Mill Park; Greensborough Plaza Gourmet Meats; Spotless Catering (managers of Parade canteen).
Red Cross Blood For Life Program
Each term a small group of volunteers from our senior students attend the Northern Unit Blood Bank at the La Trobe Medical Centre to make a valuable blood donation. Accompanied by a staff member who also makes a donation, these visits areco-ordinated by our designated Year 12 "Blood For Life Ambassadors".
For each donation, the boys are aware that they help save the lives of at least three people. With an estimated 80% of Australians requiring a blood transfusion at some point in their lives, it’s not hard for the boys to see the community benefit of regularly donating blood.
St Albans Refugee Tutoring
Students from middle and senior levels volunteer on a weekly basis to spend a couple of hours after school tutoring refugee students from the western suburbs and helping them with their English.
Parade was the first school to offer assistance to school aged refugees and asylum seekers at the Edmund Rice Centre in St Albans in 2002. Students from Year 9 up visit each Monday after school on a voluntary basis, offering one-on-one homework help and vital English practice.
As word of the program grew, the number of St Albans students arriving at the centre for this vital tuition swelled, and the venue was changed to the local Uniting Church to accommodate the larger group. The refugee students are recent arrivals in Australia from Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia and other strife-torn countries around the globe. The personalised help these children receive in their school studies stretches well beyond the limited Government support they are offered and also provides another point of contact for the newly arrived students in their local community. Parade students see it as practical way of providing 'social justice' for some of our most needy community members.
Elderly Christmas Party
The culmination of a full year's work by volunteer students from all year levels, over 200 elderly guests and their care givers are treated to a celebratory party like no other!
This annual event is perhaps the most eagerly anticipated of Parade’s Community Action initiatives. Student planning begins in February each year and continues through to the big day in late November. The party caters for over 200 elderly guests and their carers from local aged care facilities where our boys perform their Year 10 service.
The planning is precise and involves students designing and making invitations, creating a “special needs” form, floor planning and layout, catering, decorating, entertaining, assigning student hosts for each table, lighting and traffic management. Tables are set up and decorated and gifts bought for all the elderly guests. Santa and our House mascots also make a special appearance!
The set up for the party takes two whole school days on a roster system. Logistically, it is by far the most demanding project undertaken within the Community Action Program, but it is also one of the most popular, with boys lining up to volunteer their services.