From the Principal – Term 1 Week 2

We have reached the end of Week 2 in the new school year. From celebrating our Family Mass, conducting the Marcellin Parent Information Carousel evening, guiding students to rediscover routines or embrace new beginnings, it has been a fortnight filled with launching new possibilities and enjoying the energy of the College.

A very warm welcome to all families and especially our new families who are joining us in 2024. Here’s to the friendships, adventures, challenges and discoveries that lie ahead for our students and families this year. Prior to the students returning, our first days with staff focused on our Marist formation, a welcome to new staff and the launching of the Annual School Improvement Plan 2024 (ASIP).

The ASIP can be found here for your reading, and it is our last under the current Strategic Directions. Later this term I will write to families to highlight an invitation to be involved in the creation of our Strategic Directions 2025-2028. 

Marist Theme  

As launched during our Family Mass, the Marist Theme 2024 is First Light- Reveal the Spirit. The 2024 Marist Theme ‘First Light’ invites us to recognise the world as the place in which we discover and know God. God’s Spirit is revealed through creation. The first words of God in the Genesis story in the Bible were “Let there be light”. As members of our Marist school community at Newman College, you are invited to recognise and experience God’s Holy Spirit through the beauty and goodness of everything that the world holds and reveals in light. It is this gift of the Spirit that we, as Marists, want to share with others, bringing people into the joy and freedom of the Light of Christ, the Source of all Light. For a more in-depth introduction to our theme, please read Stuart McClorey’s section here. 

Celebrating Success 

Congratulations to the Class of 2023 on their WACE achievements across all pathways. The attainment of certificate courses in the General pathway and successes in university bound pathways UniReady and ATAR reflected the hard work of last year’s Year 12 cohort and guidance of teachers and families.  We look forward to hosting the group at the High Achievers’ Assembly on 13 February. A summary of the 2023 achievements can be found here.

Starting Back at School 

The first days and weeks of children and adolescents return to school can be a challenge for some and it is well within the range of normal response for them to feel a little anxious, especially at points of transition to a new year, new campus or new school.  As adults, we can be supportive by following some tried and true strategies. This Health West article provides useful tips to ease children into the routine and rhythm of a new year. The article can be accessed here. 

Routines and rhythms are supported by appropriate expectations and standards so that our students and staff can really focus on the learning and formation programs. Thank you for your support in ensuring the students are punctual and adhering to uniform and grooming standards. As I mentioned to students and parents at the recent Marcellin gatherings, when our students wear the Newman uniform well and adhere to expectations for behaviour from the start of the year, we can then focus on the better part of their good learning. Read our Vice Principal, Michael Chiera’s points on this here.  

Again, I wish our whole Newman community a joyful and rewarding 2024.

Kind regards 

Andrew Watson