Welcome to the start of the 2020 academic year. In particular, we welcome new families and staff to our Marist Community. I hope all have enjoyed the family time that Christmas and the extended break bring.
The unprecedented ongoing bushfires across such extensive parts of the country have impacted upon all Australians and gained the attention of people across the globe. Many of us can tell of immediate experiences or share stories from loved ones and friends directly affected, while others have watched the horror unfold from televisions and / or social media. Our responsibility as a Catholic Community is to animate and engage our students to consider how we respond to this crisis and its impact on our environment. Our relationship with creation and our preservation of it is reflected in the following assertion from Pope Francis:
Human life is grounded in three fundamental and closely intertwined relationships:
with God, with our neighbour and with the earth itself.
(Pope Francis, Laudate Si, paragraph 66)
To that end, our community in solidarity with those most affected by the fires in the broader community, along with other Marist schools and ministries across Australia, Newman College will be conducting a Marist Bushfire Appeal on Friday 7 February, the proceeds of which will be directed to St Vincent de Paul for distribution. One of our core Marist values is inclusivity and family; this is an opportunity for us to be broad in our outreach and focus. In the interim, I would like you all to keep those families affected by this devastating catastrophe in your prayers and thoughts.
2020 Marist Theme
Our Marist theme for 2020, ‘A Wild and Precious Life’, prompts us to reflect on the question – or more a challenge – what is your plan for your one wild and precious life? At the heart of this theme is the quote, ‘Creating one new humanity’ (Eph 2:15) which invites us to engage in relationships that will support us in developing our gifts and talents.
In 2020, we will continue to grow our Vision for Learning – Shine through discovery, Let your light shine (Matthew 5:16). It is my hope that all students at Newman College are able to set clear and achievable goals that will allow them to be challenged as learners and to succeed in their endeavours. To achieve individual success, it is the responsibility of each student to take ownership of their learning and to seek support from their teachers. Across the College, our leaders of wellbeing, leaders of learning, coordinators and teachers are committed to supporting each individual student and year groups collectively. Critical to each student’s ongoing success will be the collaboration with families in adhering to expectations. To that end, each leader of wellbeing will be writing to families this week outlining the expectations for each student as a member of the College community. As a whole community, our collective commitment to growing our culture of excellence in all facets of College life will ensure a successful, engaged learning experience for our students.
In 2020, we have a new leadership structure commensurate to the strategic and operational needs of the school. Vice Principal Lisa Fogliani has responsibility for leading each school across the College.
Marian Campus, PK-Year 2
In Early Childhood, Lisa McClue will be the initial contact person for all matters pertaining to the Marian Campus and will be supported by Katya Anderson, Leader of Learning.
Lavalla Campus, Years 3-6
The day to day leadership and contacts will be distributed to the following team:
- Stuart McClorey, Leader of Wellbeing
- Renae Zelich, Leader of Learning
- Jane Short, Religious Education Coordinator
Marcellin Campus, Years 7-12
Pastoral care teachers are the daily point of contact for students and families. Leaders of wellbeing and leaders of learning, together with Deputy Principal Wellbeing Secondary, Alan Fitzpatrick, will manage and coordinate the Marcellin Campus.
Congratulations to the cohort of 2019 for their outstanding individual and collective results in the WACE. I would like to highlight the following:
- 25% of all ATAR students received a result above 90
- 88% of students received an offer in the first round of university placements
- 98% of students attained a WACE
- The number of students who completed a Certificate Course has increased significantly to 73 Cert II awarded, 29 Cert III awarded, over the school year.
The success of each cohort is maximised by each student being placed in a pathway that is commensurate to their ability and interests. In 2020 there will be a renewed focus on working in partnership with families to ensure the correct placement of all students.
Capital Development Project
Our very exciting capital development project, The Learning Hub at the Marcellin Campus, began in earnest over the holidays. Many changes to access have been put in place to ensure the safety of students and staff, and this will be addressed with students upon their return to school on Monday and Tuesday. All building projects of such a scale will bring about a level of inconvenience and we ask parents and students for their understanding over the time of construction (2020). Please click here to view other capital works that have taken place across the College over the holidays.
The Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM)
In this year’s Australia Day Honours Awards, the Regional Director for Marist Schools Australia in Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia, Ms Julie Ryan, was awarded “The Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM)” for service to Australian Secondary Education. Those with whom Julie has worked all know and appreciate the enthusiasm and many gifts she brings to every undertaking. The Order of Australia recognises Australians who have demonstrated outstanding service, exceptional achievement, hard work and dedication. The Australia Day Honours Awards provide all Australians with the opportunity to celebrate inspiring people, like Julie Ryan, who make our nation what it is. We congratulate Julie on being deservedly recognised for many years of selfless, generous and transformative service and leadership in Catholic education.
Please click here to access details about the Novel Coronavirus and precautions taken by schools.
I thank all parents and guardians as they prepare their children for the return to school. We look forward to welcoming all students back to school on Monday and Tuesday next week and seeing families at the forthcoming Family Mass.