Dear Newman Families
Well, we have reached the end of the term and the conclusion to the 2023 academic year! We celebrated and gave thanks for 2023 in recent days with the Thursday Community Mass, liturgies and assemblies. In each celebration, we focused on the joy of the year, our expression of Marist characteristics and the varied contributions of our students to College life. In recent days, we experienced the Christmas joy of the Primary Christmas Carols Evening and K-5 Awards, the Marian Advent Liturgy, the celebration of the Ed Support Music Rocks End of Year Christmas Concert, Discovery Festival Years 7 to 9, and the Year 6 Graduation and Awards event. Our Year 11 Philippines Immersion returns soon after a truly enriching experience and our Marist Cricket team are enjoying the competition of the Marist Carnival. The term’s end reflects the nature of our whole year program – wonderful opportunities for our students to Shine Through Discovery, both inside and outside the classroom.
A sincere thanks to all of these staff; whether they have been with us for a short period or many years, each has made contributions which have helped our students flourish. Some are moving into leadership positions in other schools which speaks highly of their abilities as leaders, and the support Newman has provided in nurturing their leadership. Many of our other departing staff will take their great experience and formation at the College and add to the rich fabric of their new schools. Farewell to Ciaran Allsop, Kate Barlett, Gemma Beekink, Dante Bonarrigo, Rosalba Bottega, Tom Brajdic, Miriam Dell’Oro, Nalini Demma, Lydia Emanuele, Maria Famiano, Annalise Gangemi, Holly-Hope Grainger, Ann Joyce, Steph La Brooy, Terry Leece, Julie Maher, Lana Macpherson, Sophie Monisse, David Nelson, Stella Northey, Angelia Papiccio, Cameron Perrett, Donna Sadgrove, Matilda Sergeant, Jo Smith, Sharon Thompson, Judy Tolcher, Jane Trinder, Tony Vu.
A particular farewell to three of our College Executive who are moving to promotional positions.
Dr Lucie McCrory takes leadership of Mercedes College as incoming principal. Lucie has been an outstanding leader with us, demonstrating her knowledge and skills across our learning, pastoral, child safeguarding and management of our PK-12 environment. Lucie is
set to become the Principal of the oldest continuous Australian Catholic school on one site, as Mercedes College is the origin of Mercy education in the country.
Mr Simon Martino moves to our Marist school Red Bend College in Forbes, New South Wales. Simon has been appointed to the role of Deputy Principal and this appointment recognises his commitment to, and passion for, Marist education.
Mr Thomas Wagner, our Director of Engagement and Operations, has been appointed to the Association of Independent Schools WA as the AISWA’s Director, Strategic Communications and Business Development across the sector. Tom has been pivotal in leading the growth and development of our campus and resources.
Congratulations Lucie, Simon and Tom! We look forward to following the growth of your careers and thank you for your leadership to Newman College.
In turn, we have an exciting group of new teachers joining us in 2024. We have completed our staffing for next year and I am excited by the range of experiences and talents our incoming staff will bring to Newman. I look forward to introducing them to you in the first Newsletter of 2024.
End of Year Message
American novelist, Ursula. K. LeGuin wrote ‘It is good to have an end to journey towards; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.’ Another writer, Douglas Adams, made this observation ‘I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I intended to be.’ The 2023 academic year ends with today’s Newsletter and it has been quite a journey for our community. In our students, we witnessed a positivity and determination to make the most of every opportunity, event and program. Our whole staff have been professional and generous not only through important in-class learning experiences but a full range of full co-curricular activities across the year. As always, we received great energy and support from our families throughout 2023- thank you to you for the many warm expressions of gratitude to teachers and staff in your Christmas messages. At the end of this article are the key Term 1 dates for 2024.
Advent and Christmas
We are in the season of Advent and we have begun this beautiful liturgical celebration which draws us towards Christmas. The notion of ‘waiting’ figures strongly in Advent; we await the birth of the Saviour. What an interesting message of patience and focus this presents for us against a backdrop of the more commercial tone of rush and a countdown of shopping days left until Christmas. Father Richard Leonard makes this observation about Advent:
‘The early Christians knew that there was no point professing faith in Jesus Christ unless our daily behaviour reflects his kingdom. …. If every Christian lived out the Gospel in his or her daily life, the world would be transformed and Christ would come in spectacular fashion.
…I know that the Lord returns to us every time we love, forgive, share, are compassionate, are generous and sacrificial toward one another. It may not be as grand as dancing suns and tidal waves, but the heroic love of a parent for a child, a spouse for their sick partner and the first world sharing with the third world are spectacular enough for me to believe that Jesus’ kingdom comes every day, in every hour, at every moment.
….May the Advent season sustain us in our waiting and give us courage in our living.”
R Leonard sj: Liturgy Help November 2015
From us at Newman, having the opportunity to support, guide and celebrate your child’s journey is the greatest privilege any educator and mentor can possibly have. I wish every student, staff, parent, guardian and family of our community a joyous and blessed Christmas. I know many parents will have only a small window of opportunity over the break for rest and time with their families, but I hope it is precious time. See you all for the new academic year in 2024!