Parents, students and teachers revelled in St Thomas More’s Catholic School Brighton-Le-Sands’ first Cultural Diversity Day celebrations.
The event on June 23 recognised the 53 cultures represented among the school’s 207 students.
Parents made an abundance of food from their various cultural backgrounds including hommus, tabouli, pasta, pizza, kangaroo meat, felafel, Spanish omelette, Indonesian yellow rice, spring rolls and Welsh cakes.
Leftover food was donated to the Matthew Talbot hostel in Woolloomooloo, run by the St Vincent De Paul Society to provide accommodation to people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
Principal Jennifer Frost said the event was a wonderful way to acknowledge the diversity of the school community, which includes families from South American, Lebanese, Egyptian, Italian, Greek, Thai, and Maori backgrounds.
“The parents have really embraced the day,” she said. “The students were very inquisitive as to what culture’s clothing each other were dressed in and asked a lot of questions. It has been absolutely terrific.”
English as an Additional Language or Dialect (EALD) teacher and event organiser Caitlin Rayner works with students in need of language support on Mondays and Tuesdays each week.
“We had a beautiful prayer at assembly followed by a parade,” she said. “Watching the faces of the children and the parents was the best part. They really loved it. Sometimes the fun is taken out of school because it’s so serious and there are so many things to do and so much pressure put on academic things, so it’s wonderful that they are having so much fun.”