MAKING A SPLASH: Maya Shepherd, 3, gets ready for the Horsham Aquatic Centre YMCA pool party on Sunday. Picture: PAUL CARRACHERHORSHAM Aquatic Centre has encouraged Wimmera swimmers to attend its indoor pool party on Sunday.

The regular event will provide families with an opportunity to visit the centre and enjoy an afternoon filled with music, games, prizes, food and drinks.

Centre manager Steve Clark said the afternoon would include new activities for children.

“The pool party will feature an inflatable tumbling zorb and, for the younger children, a giant inflatable dragon and obstacle course,” he said.

“Children who come dressed in their footy club’s colours will be eligible for a prize.”

He said he hoped for a big turn-out.

“We have been very successful in previous years,” he said.

“Hopefully we will have similar numbers or more this time.”

The party is a project of the Horsham YMCA community advisory group.

Group chairman Mark Radford said money would be donated to charity.

“YMCA staff will donate their time on the day and money raised will support the Open Doors Foundation,” he said.

“In the past 12 months the Open Doors money has been used to assist with swimming lessons for young people and health and wellness classes for families who could not usually afford to use the facilities.”

Mr Clark said the party would start at 1pm and continue until 4pm.

He said people could call Horsham Aquatic Centre on 5382 2576 for further information.

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Fitting farewell for principal

November 16th, 2018

goodbye: Young Public School administration manager Jane Caldow, teacher Claire Collette, learning support officer Sally Pressley, principal Peter Blair, deputy principal Neil Muir, administration officers Leanne Braham and Cathy Smith. It will be a fitting farewell for Peter Blair when, 40 years to the day that he started his first teaching job, he retires as Young Public School principal on July 12.

His leadership career began in 1997, becoming the assistant, and later acting, principal at Cootamundra Public School.

His first permanent principalship was at Murrumburrah, before later heading to Tolland Public School in Wagga.

That path eventually led him to Young Public, where he has been for the past three and a half years.

“All the schools I’ve worked in have been very good but I must say Young Public is the jewel in the crown of my career,” Mr Blair said.

“It’s a choice school with very dedicated staff and absolutely fantastic kids.”

Mr Blair said the decision to retire was far from an easy one, but is looking forward to having more time to pursue other interests.

He will take time to travel and see his kids and grandkids, scattered over the country, while other sidelined hobbies will take centre stage.

“I have three old motorcycles sitting in the shed that I’m hoping to get round to restoring,” he said.

Mr Blair said his involvement in education was far from over. He hopes to take on less permanent and encompassing roles in the future.

“One of the things you try to instill in students is that life is full of opportunities. So this is the next stage,” he said.

He said the school will be left in more than capable hands, with Neil Muir taking over as acting principal and Jan Major as acting deputy principal.

“It provides the school the opportunity to have trained or experienced staff take new positions,” Mr Blair said.

“We have a strong succession plan, everyone gets older and we have planned so the school continues regardless.”

He said he was continually inspired in his time working in the Young community and expressed his gratitude to all the parents, volunteers and community organisations that support the school and encouraged them to continue.

“I would also like to thank the Young Witness for their interest and support,” he said.

Deputy principal Neil Muir said the school was thankful for the dedication Mr Blair has shown the school.

“We know Peter is looking forward to spending increased time with family and taking the opportunity to appreciate things he’s postponed over his career,” he said.

“We all wish him well and look forward to seeing him in the school community.”

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Technical colleges

November 16th, 2018

IN THE 1980s, Tasmanian technical colleges produced what were recognized as some of Australia’s most competent tradesmen and technicians.

Then it was decreed that technical colleges should add to the national coffers and students pay fees for training.

This resulted in a dramatic reduction in student numbers, a shortage of qualified tradesmen and a huge increase in administrative staff wages.

Areas which have seemingly disappeared since then include studies in accounting, commercial-secretarial studies, civil, electrical and mechanical engineering and drafting, fitting and machining, laboratory technicians, plumbing, panel beating, radio-TV maintenance and welding.

Not only have such areas of study disappeared but also have the well-qualified staff, expertise and equipment.

Now Tasmania has a shortage of qualified tradesmen and technicians and also some of Australia’s poorest retention rates.

Yet our high school students are expected to go on to year 11, year 12 when many would dearly like to be able to gain an apprenticeship at the end of grade 10.

Surely we would be better off to reinstate technical colleges, offer scholarships, reintroduce apprenticeships and train our youth in formal job skills so that we have a constant supply of qualified workers to replace the baby boomers, rather than rely on immigration.

– ROB CLARK, Burnie.

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On the Pulse

November 16th, 2018

Who gives an app?

The human species has been around for ages. We went through the Stone Age, the Ice Age, the Bronze and Iron Ages, The Dark Ages, the Middle Ages, the Machine Age, the Age of Oil, the Atomic Age, the Space Age, and the Information Age to name a hefty selection.

On the Pulse now predicts we are about to enter another age. This one has just got to be called The Application (or App) Age.

Can you imagine how many Apps for mobile phones there are out there?

On the Pulse leant that there are more than 1.7 million and the variety and number is growing at a rate of more than 80,000 per month. That’s a lot of software to do a lot of…er, stuff.

The first iPhone could only carry 148 apps, but these days, depending of what model mobile you carry, you can store more than 41,000 apps. App downloads from the Apple iStore have hit more than 7.1 million a day and are increasing, so you could probably call it a growth industry.

But for On the Pulse the question remains; who the devil would need 40,000 apps?

It’s like loading up 40,000 fonts, or items of clip art on your computer. What do you do with them then? Admittedly a lot of them are games, but still would you ever use them all regularly?

Could the mobile phones of tomorrow hold too much information? If so, let’s hope there’s an app out there to sort it all out for us.

Missing man

The Northern Tablelands and New England Sub-Branch of the National Servicemen’s Association of Australia (NSAA) held its remembrance service on Saturday, with a moving event – but someone was missing.

One thing that was a little puzzling though was the list of officials included in the program. The Hon. Richard Torbay MP (morning Richard), was listed as the patron, along with the contact number 6772 555.

Richard resigned from the NSW Parliament more than a year ago now and has been relaced by some other guy from the National Party (morning Adam). But it did make us wonder if the NSAA knows something On the Pulse doesn’t.

However, that’s not the worst of it. The most unforgivable thing was that Richard’s telephone number was incomplete.

On the Pulse has been trying to contact Richard for, well, more than a year now, because he never rings anymore. Alas, it was not to be.

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There is an air of optimism and expectation surrounding the Navarre Minerals drilling site at Cherrypool.

Exploration Manager Wessley Edgar waits for a result from the XRF readings of rock chip samples at Eclipse.

The Stawell-based mineral explorer began its latest drill program at its Eclipse prospect, located 60 kilometres from Horsham, earlier this month.

From an outsider’s perspective, the area looks like any other piece of rural Australia – plenty of open space, bush tracks surrounded by farmland with picturesque mountains nestled in the background.

However, resting in this area could be something big, something that could have the potential to generate thousands of jobs for anywhere between 50 to 100 years and pour millions of dollars into the Victorian economy.

There have been indications of a copper-gold zone uncovered at Cherrypool, and geologists believe this could be connected to a much larger and slightly deeper target.

The Eclipse site is located on the Miga Arc, an emerging copper belt located in western Victoria that extends from south of Glenthompson to the north-west of Horsham.

Government geologists say 500 million years ago, the east coast of Australia was located where the Miga Arc is sitting today. They consider the Miga Arc to be a continental margin arc type like the South American Andes copper belt. The Andes are home to the largest known collection of porphyry copper mines.

Along the Miga Arc, there were a series of volcanoes and beneath these volcanoes a type of copper deposit would be likely to form, called porphyry. Typical porphyry copper systems contain hundreds to several billion tonnes of ore grading anywhere from 0.2-1 per cent copper, with 0.2-2 grams per tonne gold.

Copper is a highly sought after metal, generally used in transmission of electrical power and is vital to those countries with growing economies such as China and India.

Navarre Minerals has been exploring the Cherrypool area since 2008, although the past 12 months have generated a lot of excitement for Managing Director Geoff McDermott and his team. Mineral exploration of Navarre’s Eclipse prospect is only in the infancy stage, with currently four drill contractors, two geologists and a geological assistant working on-site with the drill program.

Federal Government scientists visited the Miga Arc area in November last year, giving the go ahead for a separate government funded 16-18 hole drill program which kicked off in April this year.

“The Government is trying to create a new pre-competitive geological data to attract mineral investment into the state,” Mr McDermott said.

“The Miga Arc is mostly buried with sparse rock outcrops and the new drill information is hoped to provide the hard evidence to support an association with big ore bodies such as porphyry copper deposits.”

Time may be against Navarre Minerals to complete its own drill program.

“Conditions are starting to change with the season and the ground is becoming progressively boggy. A modest rain event will probably be the end of the program for this season,” Mr McDermott said.

Patience is most definitely one of the keys to success in mineral exploration and this was evident last week, when a drill hole had to be abandoned due to clay blockages.

Exploration is a confidence game and Navarre Minerals Exploration Manager, Wess Edgar, sums up what is needed in order to discover a copper deposit at Eclipse.

“Discovery requires belief, creativity, passion and leadership. It is commonly the result of intuitive leaps, false starts, mistakes and apparently irrational procedure.

“It is one the best rushes of your life when you’re part of a discovery because you’ve worked hard towards achieving something and has the satisfaction of actually getting it.”

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