Mixed emotions filled the halls of QACI this week, especially during our last assembly with Mr Jose. As students filed into the theatre there was an air sadness and excitement. For the last four days the Student Directors had been preparing the coming half hour.
As I was sitting there, it was rather evident how the student body felt about Mr Jose’s departure. As he walked up to the lectern to give his last address as our Principal the whole school gave him a loud and warm applause and as he proceeded to tear up – I think we all felt his angst in that moment.
The truth is everybody has to leave and the time has come for Mr Jose, but of course we couldn’t let him say goodbye without our traditional QACI send off. A montage of goodbye messages was shown and a bag of warm fuzzies was presented to him. There were two musical performances; a rendition of “Count on me” (Bruno Mars) by Marco Madamba and Natalya Nanai Papu-Tema which included a humorous bridge that recounted how Marco met Mr Jose, and a performance of “For Good” from the musical Wicked by Vocal Collective.
As part of his final address, Mr Jose compared himself to Steve Jobs. He also spoke about Steve Wozniak the co-founder of Apple. Wozniak helped Jobs establish Apple and without him Apple wouldn’t be where it is today. So what does Steve Wozniak have to do with QACI? The point that Mr Jose was trying to get across is that, yes QACI will be different without him but what makes QACI the way it is are the Steve Wozniaks that run it, the teachers and staff. None of this would have happened without them. As he said, the core of QACI is still here, the people that were here from the very beginning are still here.
The Remaining QACI Foundation Staff:
John Carroza, Jim Duncan, Karen Preece, Kristina Kelman, Jennie Jahnke, Stephen Matthias, Katrina Hill, Lesley Jenkins, Kathy Mackey, Karen Larkin.
And while we have some remaining fears as to what the future may bring, as Mr Jose said, “if we hold dear to the things that we value about this place and pass it on to the next group of people” we can maintain what we think is special about QACI.
I believe that It’s the people who make QACI what it is – both the founding staff and all the current staff as well as the students. They way we value each other here is special.
Stephany Banal - Year 11 QACI Student