The Loop - Issue 9

Keeping you in the loop at Gilroy

From the Principal

Dear families, staff and students

Term 4 has certainly been exceptionally busy!  We began with the Higher School Certificate examinations and I congratulate Year 12 on their mature and dedicated approach throughout this time. We have also held yearly examinations for Years 9 and 10 while Years 7 and 8 are completing their last assessment tasks this term. Last week we acknowledged the wonderful achievements of the Year 11 students and marked the end of the Preliminary course with our Awards Ceremony. 

This week at the assembly for Years 7, 9 and 11 we inducted the new student leaders for 2019/2020 into their roles.  These students will be representing and leading the student body and have already begun to implement social justice opportunities for this term.  We are incredibly lucky to have such a wonderful student community.  Our new student leaders are:

Year 12 College Leaders

Tchingal Titans

Tiana Anderson

Ebony Borg

Samuel Hennessey

Callum Willard


Jabiru Knights

Matthew Betros

Christopher Ho

Annalise McKewen

Courtney Thompson


Warragunna Warriors

Isabella Bovino

Lachlan Mulheron

Finn Towner

Vanessa Turini


Windaru Vikings

Nicholas Connellan

Emily Henson                      

Andrew Mizzi

Alicia Richards

                         Year 11 College Leaders

                         Tchingal Titans

                         Addison Cordery

                         Sarah Farrell

                         Koray Oskay

                         Emerson Turner


                         Jabiru Knights

                        Christian Abal

                        Darcy Brettle

                        Danah Pham

                        Bahar Tofangchi


                       Warragunna Warriors

                       Ryan Duffy

                       Nicole Homsi

                       Madison Hume

                       Riley Stockdale


                       Windaru Vikings

                       Aaron Chebaia

                       Joshua Dengate

                       Jade Napper

                      Zoe Rowntree

I am very excited to announce that the College is now accepting enrolment applications for Year 7 2021, however, the enrolment application process will be a little different. Our aim is to streamline the process by taking applications earlier and finalising offers earlier therefore the first difference is that next year the College will not hold enrolment interviews. We have also changed the timing for all aspects of the process and so the important dates to remember are:

  • Applications open Term 4 2019

  • Open Evening 19 February 2020

  • First Round Enrolment Offers 6 April 2020

  • First round acceptances returned by parents 1 May 2020

  • Second Round Enrolment Offers 7 May 2020

  • Second round acceptances returned by parents 14 May 2020 

Please note that Gilroy Catholic College supports the Enrolment Policy of Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta and, as such, where places are limited, enrolment priority will be given to:

  • Catholic children who live in the local parish and surrounding parishes; and

  • Children of families who actively participate in the life of the school and local parish community

 Further information regarding CEDP enrolment policy can be found on the website at:

 The other difference this year is that families will be required to submit a Parish Priest reference form as part of the application package. This decision aligns with the procedures for most of our neighbouring Catholic secondary schools and was made in consultation with our local Parish Priests. Please ensure that application packages contain all required information prior to submission to the College. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact the College.

Term 4 always signifies the movement towards Advent and the Christmas season. This is a time of hope and reflection for all Catholics. It is a time when we reflect on our faith and actions. It is at this time of year that the school community collects items for those less privileged and we gain a clear picture of the gratitude that should be in our hearts. It can also be a time of difficulty for some people and so, as a community, we reach out to those in need. I leave you with a prayer from Saint Teresa of Avila (1515 – 1582) that reminds us of the importance of understanding that each of us is the face of Christ on earth. 

 Christ has no body but yours,

No hands, no feet on earth but yours,

Yours are the eyes with which he looks

Compassion on this world,

Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good,

Yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world.

Yours are the hands, yours are the feet,

Yours are the eyes, you are his body.

Christ has no body now but yours. 


God bless,

Cheryl Merryweather

From the Assistant Principal


Please keep in your thoughts and prayers all of our Year 12 students as they finish up their Higher School Certificate exams. Term 4 signals the beginning of a new HSC class - the HSC class of 2020!  Our Year 11 students are now HSC students! I encourage students to make a good start. The first assessment tasks for most courses will fall due during this term and it makes such a difference if this first task is completed with confidence and a high degree of effort. It sets the benchmark for the remainder of the course.

Summer Uniform

Thank you to families and students who have returned well groomed and smartly dressed in the summer uniform. Please keep up the good work. Parents and students are reminded that an explanatory note is required whenever a student is not in correct uniform. Our expectations are made very clear to students at regular intervals and consequences are issued to students who consciously make the choice to dress incorrectly in the morning.

Uniform Survey

Thank you to everyone who participated in the recent uniform survey. We have now surveyed our parent, staff and student communities. As a result of the feedback we have received the College will investigate the introduction of the following items;

  • School shorts for boys (to be optional and only worn in Term 1 and 4)
  • School pants for girls and
  • A school rain coat

We will also reintroduce the college cap as a replacement for the bucket hat.

Final designs and a timeline re: the introduction of new items will be communicated later in the term.

Jaie Skinner

Gilroy Catholic College - Assistant Principal

Year 7 Pastoral Incursion

‘BEAT Bullying’ by Daniel Merza & Boot Camp by the Personal Training Institute

 Daniel Merza was invited to the College to give the students in Year 7 the opportunity to reflect on the key topic of bullying, focusing on three perspectives - the bully, the bullied, and the bystander. Daniel spoke passionately about his life and the impact bullying had on him throughout his schooling. He used his past experience as well as the current issues teenagers face to provide students with the knowledge and skills on how to recognise and handle bullying behaviours. Daniel achieved this by providing the students with the opportunity to develop and foster relationships amongst their peers in a practical environment which challenges their ability to work as a team and reflect on behaviours they witness.

 Year 7 then got the opportunity to participate in a boot camp that focused on teamwork, encouragement, overcoming difficult challenges and sweating (a lot)!

Year 7 Pastoral Incursion Pics!

Cruden's Drought Relief Experience

On the 12th October my family were talking about the drought and how hard it must be after my Dad had heard an interview on the radio with a farmer in Bourke NSW. We talked about how we could help, and we came up with a plan to fill our 4 cars with groceries, dog food and water and head out into the bush.

So on Friday 18th October we headed off with our 4 cars fully loaded with supplies. We travelled up over the Blue Mountains, into Lithgow, then up to Mudgee for the night. Mudgee is still quite green, with lots of cows and sheep around. That night we decided that we would just drive west to Dubbo and decide along the way where we would drop off some of the groceries.

As we approached Dubbo it was getting drier, dams were empty and creeks were dry, no green grass, just paddocks of dirt. On the western side of Dubbo it was worse, For Sale signs everywhere, empty paddocks, abandoned farms. We wanted to stop at some farms and give them some supplies, the first and second house we went to but there was no one there so we left some water with a note saying ‘Thank You. We know you’re doing it tough, Love from Sydney.

We started feeling a bit lost in what to do, so we stopped in Narromine and went to the Police Station and asked if they could point us in the right direction, but he was only new in town so didn’t know what we could do. But he was also very pleased that we were thinking of the farmers, and had driven up from Sydney with supplies.

We then headed for Gilgandra for lunch, and the landscape was getting worse, empty paddocks, now we were seeing dry river beds, we drove for 100’s km without seeing any water, and very few sheep and cattle.  Even Gilgandra (which is a big town) looked abandoned, shops were boarded up down the main street.  We headed to the pub for lunch. Dad approached 3 men sitting at a table and told them what we were doing and if any of them had a suggestion of where we could leave some of the food and water. One of the men said he had the perfect person to talk to, his brother was the President of the local Lions Club.  We were then introduced to Doug, he had lived in Gilgandra all his life and lived through many droughts, but he said he has seen nothing like this one. We told him what our intentions were and asked if he could point us in the right direction. He told us he would take as much of the supplies as we wanted to give him and he would pass it onto the Country Women's Association, who have a long list of families in need. He told us to go and have a drink and some lunch and he would organise a truck to take our supplies.

Mum went to the bar and ask for 2 glasses of water, but the bar lady said, ‘I’m sorry we don’t have any tap water only bottled, would that be alright.’ Could you even imagine not being able to go your kitchen and not be able to turn on the tap and get a drink of water?? We sat down for lunch and talked about whether we were going to leave some or all of our groceries, dog food and water with Doug. We decided that we would leave it all with Doug and make a very small difference in the lives of the local farmers.

Doug borrowed a truck and we started loading it up, the tray, the front and back seat, his truck was full. Doug was very overwhelmed that a family from the city would do something like this and we were overwhelmed to see how appreciative he was.

After lunch we headed to Coonabarabran, where we went and bought more groceries to leave in another town. As we started our trip home we thought we would drop our groceries off at the next town we went through. But each small town we went through were like ghost towns, shops boarded up, no one on the streets, no cars, no people.

We decided to bring it home and head off again in the next month or two and do it all again.

To see on the TV, read in the paper, hear about it on the radio, is nothing compared to what it’s really like out in the bush. Words cannot truly describe what it’s like out there, farmers and towns are doing it tough. What we did was so rewarding for us, to think we might of helped a farmer stay on his land, a child to have a fresh drink of water, the working dog to have some food, a family to have a hot meal. In the big scheme of things what we did was nothing, but if more families from the city could do what we did it might help a little bit more. Even go out into the bush, visit a town, spend some money, have a meal, every little bit helps.

We are now planning our next trip to the bush, but making it bigger…………


Casey Cruden

Year 9

Terms 3 & 4 Sports Report


NSWCCC Basketball


HZSA Triathlon

Well done to all of our students who participated in the Hills Zone Triathlon.  This was a difficult day to compete due to high temperatures however, all students put in an excellent peformance.  

Special mention to the following students:

Samuel Waring (Year 7):  1st place  Junior Boys Triathlon

Gianluca Plebani (Year 9):  3rd place Intermediate Boys Triathlon

Angelina McLean, Ashley Jay and Scarlett Jackson (Year 7):  3rd Place  Junior Girls Team Event

HZSA Triathlon

Gilroy's Sporting Superstars!

Applications for Year 7 2021 are now OPEN.

Enrolment Applications for Year 7 2021 are now open.  

All current families of the College who have a student wanting a position in Year 7 2021 must complete an Enrolment Application.  

Enrolment Application Packages are available from the College office during business hours Monday to Friday 8am to 4pm.  When lodging your application please allow 15 minutes for the process to take place and please bring all of the original documents to be sighted and a photocopy of those documents for our records (unfortunately, photocopying is not available at the College office).                   

Applications close on Friday 27 March 2020.

For enquiries regarding enrolment please contact our Registrar, Mrs Mary McBain

Careers News


LifeLauncher is a dynamic new website tool that will help NSW high school students launch their future careers by identifying job and education options that best match their strengths and personalities.

To access LifeLauncher visit

LifeLauncher works on mobiles, laptops and desktops to provide tailored career and course information and advice for young people. It provides guided navigation from research through to enrolment, often in as few as three or four clicks, with information on jobs and how you can achieve your career ambitions through vocational education and training (VET) or university study.

Importantly, LifeLauncher also includes labour market information to help young people understand the strength and future potential of their career and study choices, delivered in bit-size chunks to make their career hunt even easier. The platform combines information on over 3,700 careers and links to 1,534 VET and university courses, as well as the latest Bureau of Statistics information on careers and their employment prospects.” It is packed with interactive features including quizzes to help students identify their key traits and strengths and link them to best suited careers. Students can create their own ‘pinboard’ to collect ideas and information about their preferred courses and careers, making it a great place for students to gather ideas all in one place that will help them launch their future career. Careers Advisors will also find it a useful tool for working with students in schools, as well as a great complement to other tools they use.

Choosing a career path can be daunting but this tool helps take away confusion and is useful not only for students but also parents, teachers and career advisers. LifeLauncher focuses on all types of careers and delivers data in a simple way so that it can be easily personalised and filtered for shortlisting.

Our Immersion Experience with Catholic Mission

During the October Break, myself and 9 other Year 11 students travelled to Central Australia as part of an Immersion Experience with Catholic Mission.  The trip was truly life changing as we got to experience first hand and learn so much more about Aboriginal Australian culture, especially that of the Arrernte people of Alice Springs and the Pitantjara people around Uluru and Kata-Tjuta.  

Departing from Sydney Airport, the group was excited for the trip that lay ahead.  First stop Alice Springs! (also known as Mpartwe in the local Arrernte language).  The first night, we were welcomed to country during a sacred smoking ceremony performed by traditional land owners Jody, Greg and John who would be our guides and teachers for the next 8 days on their land. 

The next few days were spent exploring through the MacDonnell Ranges, opening our eyes to the incredible desert landscapes of Central Australia. We were taught about the Caterpillar Dreaming, and the story of Yeperenye seen in the land in the form of the mountain ranges.  We swam in ancient waterholes, saw cultural rock art and paintings, travelled through passages known as Emily, Jesse and Simpson’s Gaps and even brought ourselves to taste test Kangaroo tails, cooked traditionally by Jody, John and Greg. 

On the last night we helped out with a Soup Van with Father Raas and the parish in Alice Springs, where we delivered soup, sandwiches and drinks to local communities. This experience was quite confronting for the group, as we saw communities that were living in third world conditions without water and power. But what was most striking was just how friendly and welcoming the people were, smiling and waving as we arrived, starting conversations and blessing us as we left. 

After a sad goodbye, it was time to hit the road. Five hours later and we were staring at the most iconic rock in the world. Before us, was Uluru. It was gigantic in size, and we knew it after a 10 kilometre, 3 hour walk around it’s base! The sight of the rock was majestic as we saw the colour change at both a sunset and sunrise viewing. We also explored Kata-Tjuta, walking through the centre of a group of large ancient rock domes. 

This trip was an amazing experience, and as a group we are so grateful for the opportunity. Lifelong memories have been made, and we are so lucky to have been part of this Immersion Experience.

We would like to thank Mr Brannan and Miss Geha, for spending their holidays with us and taking us on this unforgettable trip as well as our facilitator from Catholic Mission, Alesha. We would also like to thank Jody, John, Greg and Father Raas for their warm welcome to Alice Springs, and all the knowledge and passed on to us during the trip. 

Ashleigh Howlett



New parenting series from ReachOut

ReachOut Parents Live is a video series available on Facebook where we explore tips for parents and carers on communicating with their teen. Host Melissa Hoyer, interviews experts in their fields on topics like mental health, drugs and alcohol, rules and boundaries and more. We’re also including some young people so you can hear directly from them, too.

Episode 3 is focused on talking to your teen about mental health. It will be airing at 5:30pm AEST on Thursday November 7 featuring a ReachOut Youth Ambassador as well as a Child and Family Practitioner. 

We take questions in advance as well as live on-air, so it's a great chance for parents to ask all the curly questions they've been wondering about.

Ask a question:

Put it in your calendar now, and tune in for ReachOut Parents Live at 5.30 pm on Thursday 7 October.

Register now