HOUSE PATRON – MR GRAHAM KENNEDY
Graham Kennedy was Principal of St Michael’s Regional High School from 1982 until 1993. He was the first 20th Century lay-principal of the school, succeeding Br Kevin Kearney, the final Christian Brother Principal. Mr Kennedy began his career at Christian Brothers (as it was then known) in 1967, as a Physical Education, Mathematics and History teacher. A Rugby League player of great renown, Graham captained his home country, New Zealand, during a stellar career of 64 international games including 21 tests. He initially came to Wagga Wagga to coach the Kangaroos club and took up a teaching position at CBHS. In 1972 he was offered the position of Deputy Principal and filled that role with dedication, purpose and vision until 1982 when he became the first lay headmaster at the school in nearly a century. St Michael’s flourished under Mr Kennedy’s leadership, setting high standards in academia, music, the arts and in sport. Graham Kennedy’s St Michael’s was a happy place, a school to be respected and admired, where the uniform was worn with pride, the cherished traditions lived up to and a strong code of discipline adhered to. He announced on October 11, 1993 that he would be standing down at year’s end to take up a position as principal of St Dominic’s College at Penrith and the city lost one of its finest contributors to education. Mr Kennedy served St Dominic’s and its 850 students with similar commitment, passion and resolve until his untimely death in 2002. Graham and his wife Margaret had five children: Gary, Michael, Paul, Ross and Natalie.
The symbols and the colours on the Kennedy House Shield are significant for our patron Mr Graham Kennedy. For a total of 26 years, Graham was a teacher and principal of St Michael’s Regional High School.
The shield colours of red and blue come from the St Michaels School song which was always sung with immense pride and particularly the final line, “St Michael’s Red and Blue”.
A Celtic cross overlooked the St Michael’s school grounds from atop the main building, and was also prominent on the school crest. The Celtic Cross unites the past with the present. The Celtic cross represents the unity of Heaven and Earth and it is placed between the Southern Cross Constellation and the Murrumbidgee River on the Kennedy House Shield.
The Southern Cross Constellation is the celestial body that has guided and watched over the southern skies since time began and has significance for Mater Dei Catholic College. The Murrumbidgee River was the dominant landscape feature at St Michael’s School.
The book and the ball represent the challenges that Graham Kennedy offered the students at St Michael’s High School. His holistic approach to education embodied the development of mind, body and spirit. These challenges were readily accepted by the students and St Michael’s flourished under the leadership of Graham Kennedy.