Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Dear Parents and Friends,

I congratulate our students on the positive start they have made to Term 3. They look happy as they re-engage in a variety of learning activities, classes, sports and musical events and religious experiences. There is also great excitement around the use of the new learning spaces. I hope that you have had an opportunity to visit these new spaces during the past few weeks.

As Stage 1 of the Building Project reaches completion we commence Stage 2 of the Building Project.  
  • Currently the Development Application is being prepared by the architects and CEO school facilities officers to be lodged to North Sydney Council by the end of this week.
  • The Steering Committee will meet on August 28 to review the plans.
  • Presentation to St Mary’s parents at a forum on Monday September 7 at 7pm.

The Steering Committee Members for the Building Project are as follows:
  • School Leadership Team
  • Project Manager: Paul Gibson
  • SARM Architects
  • Regional Education Consultant: Janice Haydon
  • Anni Austin (Parent)
  • Wendy Stamp (Parent)
  • Damian Milani (Parent)
  • Geoff Van Den Bos (Parent)

On Monday evening September 7 at 7pm there will be an opportunity for parents to engage in a Parent Forum where I will update you on various school matters and provide you with an opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback. One of the matters I will brief you on will be the second stage of the building program. I hope you will be as excited as I am about the plans for our growing school where as you know, we will be constructing a new building on the terrace site immediately to the east of the school on Ridge Street.

I understand some parents may be concerned about how we will accommodate all students during the second phase of the building program. Most students will remain in our existing buildings during the construction of the new building, but we will need to locate some classes elsewhere during that period. At present, the Catholic Education Office personnel are looking at the options for the construction program phasing and accommodation of the children. I will be consulting with the School Advisory Council and the stage 2 Building Steering Committee about these matters and will keep the parent community informed.

As part of the development of St Mary’s School and the necessary forward thinking that such a project entails, I will be participating in an international school principals’ conference in Finland next week. This will be an excellent opportunity to network with other colleagues from around the world and also showcase St Mary’s School. School visits to Denmark to see some very contemporary school buildings will also be a feature of the conference.  Finland is renowned for its contemporary education system and high academic standards so I am looking forward to experiencing their system in this setting.  During my absence of three weeks, Julie Hunt, assistant principal, will assume the position of acting principal and will be available to meet parents if needed.

It is with much appreciation that I thank the many parents who participated in the survey for Julie Hunt’s contract renewal recently. Julie was very successful in her appraisal and we congratulate her on such fine achievements. I’m certain that you will support her in the acting role during my absence.

Yours in peace
God Bless