Back to school: Record number of twins

Published 12:30pm 23 January 2023

Back to school: Record number of twins
Words by Kylie Knight

There could be something in the water at Southern Cross Catholic College (SCCC), with 27 sets of twins starting school this week across the school’s four campuses.

It’s a record for Brisbane Catholic Education (BCE).

See the photo gallery at the end of this story.

Eighteen sets of twins will start school tomorrow at SCCC’s three primary campuses (Kippa-Ring, Woody Point and Scarborough), and nine sets of twins are starting at the school’s secondary Scarborough campus.

The pupils from Prep, Year 1, 2, 4, 5, 9, 10, 11 and 12 donned fresh school uniforms today for a photo shoot to mark the record. Twenty-five of the 27 sets of twins were present.

Southern Cross Catholic College Principal Christopher Campbell says it is a BCE record for the most sets of twins at any one school.

“I even had my colleagues do a second check of the numbers because I couldn’t believe what I was seeing” he says.

“The most we’ve ever had is three or four sets. It seems like it has been a double baby boom across this region.

“Even more interesting, two of sets of twins starting at our primary campus have the same surname - but aren’t related.

“God works in mysterious ways, and our school community feels extremely blessed to have this many sets of twins enrolled across our college campuses this year.”

The sets of super siblings are 54 of the 1626 students starting school this week at SCCC.

Back to school: Record number of twins

Seeing double

Newport mother Alana Robertson has four children starting at SCCC this year – one set of twins in Prep, and her second set of twins in Year 2.

“My two youngest are so excited to start Prep, they’ve been asking for homework, and I’ve had to invent some for them,” she says.

“They’ve also been asking when they are going to be able to read, as if it’s magic, and on your first day you wake up and can read.”

Mr Campbell says managing twins in the classroom was done in partnership with parents – some wanted their children to be in separate classes, while others wanted them together.

“Generally it is a parent decision (if they are in the same class or separated). They are more than welcome to approach us and say, ‘the kids would feel more comfortable being in a different class’. Often times, they prefer to be together. There seems to be a great bond between twins and they do (like to be together), particularly when they’re younger and they’re a bit nervous,” he says.

“It’s mixed but the kids fit in really beautifully.”

It can be a little trickier with identical twins, but Mr Campbell says teachers find ways to tell the children apart.

“Over time, you will be able to tell them apart. When I first meet them, I think there’s no way I’ll ever know the difference but often one will be physically a little bit taller … you do tend to notice facially that there are differences,” he says.

It’s an exciting start to the year, not only for the children but also staff.

“It’s a community school and to have everybody out here today … we’re so pleased that nearly all of the twins wanted to come out and be part of this because it is a community,” he says.

“Having had people off campus for two years now with COVID, one of the most exciting things for us will be to have everybody back. We couldn’t have done this two years ago. It’s so lovely that they’re here and it’s a great way to start the year.”

Check out the photo gallery

Photos by Dominika Lis

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