Given the on-going discussion on this forum, comments I’ve received with other Marist Old Boys and broader interest in this case around Australia, I’m considering starting a Marist Canberra Ex-students and Families Association to lobby for an inquiry into Marist during the 1970’s through 1990’s. I think a lobby group of this type would increase the pressure on the school to come clean during the civil case. Such a group would also get considerable publicity, again, increasing pressure for the truth top be revealed.
I don’t really care who runs the inquiry as long as it is impartial and provides the answers ex-students, their families and the broader community is seeking. I expect issues for which we will seek answers to include:
– Were the offenses by Lyons, Kostka etc. covered up by the school and/or larger Marist Order (including ‘What did other teachers at the time know or suspect’ and ‘Why were parents and students concerns raised over these 30 years ignored’;
– Why exactly did Lyons (Paul) leave Marist;
– Where Lyons employment records destroyed by the school when he left and, if so, why;
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– Was Lyons given a Reference when he left Marist and was this used at Daramalan – if so who wrote and signed it?
– Why is Lyons (Paul or Ray) not mentioned in the schools’officially history (small point but is smacks of re-writing history);
– Why were rumours being put around by the Order prior to Kostka’s arrest that he died several years ago;
– Why didn’t the order act quicker in having him surrender to Police prior to his arrest (it took him several months for him to actually surrender to ACT police);
– Why are the Order stating they have no-duty to care to students for Brothers Action;
– Is the suicide rate at Marist higher than the average for other schools in the ACT, and if so why?
Shoud Bro Jo etc.. be found to be at fault I would also expect the school to change the names of it’s Houses away from those implicated in this case.
Other issues to be raised would of course be welcome.
Given discussion in Riot-Act previously I also think it relevant for an interested group to discuss the past culture of violence at the school amongst staff towards students.
Again, I think a lobby group comprised of the ex-Marist Community raising these issues may well force positive action either by sheer weight/pressure of numbers and/or through embarrassment caused by adverse publicity to the school/order.
I’d also be interested in meeting with any Old Boy or their families to discuss the establishment of such a group.