McAuley News

Term 4, Issue 12 - 4 DECEMBER 2020


What a Year!

It is reassuring and energising to know that, as a community, those with a connection to Catherine McAuley in 2020 have thrived in a year that has brought with it significant and unusual challenges.

I would like to thank you, as would the staff of Catherine McAuley, for your flexibility, understanding and continued support of your daughters and of us, as we have navigated the intrepid waters through which we have passed in 2020. We offer particular tribute to the students of this school. They have been unfailing in their adaptability, their perseverance and their continued focus on achievement.

In schools, we often talk about the need for students to build resilience and to be able to cope in diverse and challenging circumstances. This year, many students have done just this. We commend their ability to face adversity and to push through it.

This disposition puts them in good stead for continued success as they move into adulthood. Our world needs strong women who survive and thrive in all circumstances. Your daughters should be proud of themselves, as we are, and, we are certain, you are.

Thank You To Staff, and Special Tribute To Those Who Are Leaving Us

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the staff of Catherine McAuley for their work with your daughters this year.

Through their dedication and care for your daughters, we have seen significant achievement of students in all areas of school life. You would have seen our performing arts promotion this week. This was in lieu of our annual Showcase evening. Throughout this newsletter there are also many other examples of students achieving in all areas of their education. 

Student achievement, as you know, comes as a result of the work of staff with students. I know how much you support the Catherine McAuley staff, and know that you will join me in offering them my gratitude for their work this year.

I would like to pay particular tribute to the following staff who are taking leave or moving on to other opportunities in 2021:

 Staff taking leave in 2021

  • Teresa Wilson

  • Joanne Bleakley

  • Katie Patterson

  • Elizabeth Newman

  • Margaret Whyntie (Term 1 only)

  • Mary Altair (Term 1 only)

Staff moving to other opportunities in 2021

  • Alison Finnerty

  • Narelle Moore

  • Piera Goh

  • Lillian Treanor

  • Christina Van Domburg

  • Kelly Senel

  • Troy Formosa

  • Patricia Falzon

  • Jaspreet Sehmbi-Kaur

The Last Few Weeks Of School

As the year draws to a close, there are some significant events that will occur to celebrate our year and the achievements of the Catherine McAuley students.

Whilst we cannot invite you to the school premises for most of these events, we hope that you are able to celebrate with us. The Academic Assembly will take place on Friday, 11 December, in two sessions. Please see Ms Rossetti’s section of the newsletter for more information.

As per previous communication, formal classes will conclude on Friday, with an alternate program to take place on Monday and Tuesday of the following week. The online Parent / Teacher / Student meetings will take place on Wednesday, 16 December, and we look forward to seeing you online then. 

Mary Refalo


Parent/Teacher/Student Meetings

Next week you will be receiving your daughter’s end of year report.  Included with the report will be information on how to book meetings with your daughter’s teacher at our upcoming Parent/Teacher/Student meetings. These meetings will be conducted over Whereby in the same way as the Semester 1 meetings were held.  

For the first time at Catherine McAuley, Year 7 will take part in student-led conferences where they will reflect upon their work and present to you and their teacher the answers to three questions:

  • Where am I now in my learning journey? 

  • Where am I going? 

  • How will I get there?

A student-led conference is a meeting to share a student’s current level of performance and to set goals for future learning.  The student-led conference, which includes the student, family members, and a teacher, replaces the traditional parent-teacher conference, giving the student ownership over presenting her work and setting goals for future growth. Student-led conferences exist on a continuum from students being present at the conference to students leading every element of the conference.  Ideally, the student speaks for the majority of the conference, curates her work in a portfolio, and reflects on data from the work. The staff and Year 7 students are very excited about this initiative and we hope to develop this process amongst all year levels in the coming years.

End of Year Award Assembly

The annual awards assembly will be held on Friday, 11th December. This year, to ensure a COVID safe environment, two assemblies will be held with only the award recipients attending their relevant assembly.  Years 10 and 11 will be held in the morning from 9.00am-10.30am.  Years 7, 8 and 9 will have their assembly from 11.30am-1.00pm.  Both assemblies will be held in the Morley Centre. One parent per student is invited to attend. Invitations have already been sent to the families of students receiving awards. To accommodate all other family members unable to attend, both assemblies will be live-streamed. The live stream links can be found here for Years 10 and 11 assembly and here for Years 7, 8 and 9 assembly. 

Merry Christmas

Wishing you and your family a very blessed Christmas and a safe and prosperous New Year. I look forward to working with you all in 2021.

Ms Silvana Rossetti
Assistant Principal (Learning and Teaching)

FROM THE ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL (Pastoral Care/Administration)

Reflection on Triumphs and Tribulations

(from: Dr Prue Salter - The Study Skills Specialist)

With the end of the year fast approaching it is a good time to reflect with your daughter on her approach to school this year and what you have learnt from the challenges she has faced. We recommend parents take a moment to do a short SWOT analysis with their daughter on her approach to school and learning. The following questions guide you through the SWOT analysis.


  • What did you do well at school this year?

  • What subjects or topics were you good at?

  • What worked for you in your approach to learning?

  • What are you proud of achieving?

  • What new skills did you develop?


  • What were your greatest challenges in achieving your personal best at school?

  • What did you find difficult this year?

  • What skills do you feel need more work?

  • What areas of your approach did you struggle with?

  • When did you feel not confident about your ability to succeed?


  • What could you do to build your strengths and deal with your weaknesses?

  • Who did you encounter this year that might be able to help you on this journey?

  • What will be different about next year that will create opportunities to change?

  • What could you personally do differently in your approach to school next year?

  • What one thing could you change that would make the biggest difference to you being a more effective learner?


  • What are the biggest obstacles to you making changes in your approach?

  • Are there other students you sit with who make learning difficult?

  • What is stopping you from achieving the top marks you are capable of achieving?

  • What challenges do you face in staying motivated to do your work for school?

  • What challenges do you face in managing distractions and procrastination? 

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Reflection for 2020 - A Year With a Difference

As the school year comes to a close, I share the following reflection from Australian Religious Response to Climate Change, A reflection on Covid-19 and Creation

The article presents six learnings from this year's experience that may help us better care for Creation and poses six questions for reflection. I have outlined briefly the six areas the article addresses. I recommend you read the full article.

  1. Appreciating nature: Under COVID, many of us have spent more time in our local parks marvelling at nature.
  2. We can work and play closer to home: Zoom meetings have become more normal and, while not the same as face to face meetings, they actually enable a reasonable quality of communication with others. Similarly, as we’ve learnt to shop, exercise and recreate locally, we’ve learned to appreciate our own neighbourhood!
  3. Slowing the pace of life and re-learning what’s important: Under COVID, it’s been possible to rekindle enjoyment of the simple things in life: reading, games, music, time with family. Instead of shopping and countless other activities during lockdown, we’ve read a book, dusted off the guitar, or phoned a friend.
  4. We can be brave and selfless when we need to: Under COVID, we’ve learnt that we can endure considerable suffering, if there is a greater good at hand. Many people seem more willing to give of themselves for others.
  5. A new appreciation of science and facts: As we can’t see the virus, we’ve needed to heed the advice of virologists and epidemiologists on how to deal with COVID. And in so doing, we’ve been willing to undergo enormous changes in our lifestyles: staying at home and not going to restaurants, and sporting matches, because the scientists told us it was important to ‘flatten the curve’.
  6. As a global community, we’re all in this together: The virus doesn’t respect international borders, so in COVID, every country is suffering and, to some extent, we feel for each other. 

On behalf of the Pastoral Team I wish each family a Happy and Holy Christmas.

Ms Debbie Grigson
Assistant Principal (Pastoral Care/Administration)

Farewell to Senior Constable Dusan Dakic

Speech of Appreciation to Senior Constable Dusan Dakic from Catherine McAuley Westmead School Captains Aimee Hassett and Akansha Negi

Over the past years, you have been a constant source of inspiration and support for us all. 

I think we always assumed that police were such authoritative and scary individuals but upon meeting you, our views have forever changed. Thanks to you, we have experienced such a warm, compassionate and fun side that has broken down the barrier, providing the school community with someone who is always there for us. 

We also really appreciate how you have been such a valuable source of knowledge for the community. Whether it be from road safety to substance use or online safety, we’ve always gained so much from your words. You’ve always been so present within our community, spreading your knowledge and wisdom to all, for example the countless presentations, the legal studies and PDHPE classes and so much more, where you’ve given up your time to share your personal expertise, which the girls have valued so much. You have genuinely guided us all in the right and positive direction. 

You have also been present in all of our community events. Whether it be from Award Ceremonies, Religious Celebrations, Open Days and Mercy Day where we still fondly remember those awesome dancing skills and your comforting presence during the Haunted House! 

Constable Dakic, I think we speak on behalf of everyone here when we say, we always feel welcomed by you with such warmth and a constant smile in your presence! You are a person of great integrity and possess so much passion, compassion and respect towards everyone and everything. You are an inspiration to McAuley to build it up everyday!

Honestly Constable Dakic you are a legend. We wish you all the happiness and blessings for all your future endeavours.

Thank you once again for everything, you will be dearly missed by the McAuley community!


Making the Best of the Summer Holidays

The Pandemic has not only brought a new “normal” to every-day living, it has also made us rethink holidays and celebrations. It has been a long year for everyone, so we really encourage you to enjoy this time off to reflect, be creative, nurture yourselves and your daughters and celebrate the good things we have. And it is a time for our young people and ourselves to relax, recharge our batteries and be more flexible in our routines to fully enjoy family life.

Doing something special in these holidays might be helpful: It does not have to be a holiday per say, maybe your kids can have more input into meals that are cooked, or the type of groceries purchased, something you would not buy and would be considered a treat. They might be allowed to take up a new hobby, create something artistic, planting…. or perhaps there is another skill or activity you could teach and join in with them.

You might be able to use this time of lower stress, to sit down with your children at the beginning of the holidays to work out what they would like to achieve over this long break, what is on their bucket list and what is on yours…. Allowing your daughter to have time to socialise with her peers is also a great way for them to firm up friendships with students. For further information and click on the link provided-

 As young people might require more support due to our uncertain times, please encourage your daughters to seek out support through times of stress during the Christmas Break and when dealing with difficult events in their life.

For any urgent mental health support over the holidays, please contact 000 or go to your nearest emergency Hospital or for less urgent enquiries please contact:

Mrs Suzan Boulattouf
School Counsellor


As we enter the Church’s new year, the season of Advent reminds us that we can look forward to and prepare for the coming of Christ at Christmas. It is a season of so many things: of expectation, reflection, hope and trust. We are constantly in a state of expectation, always in advent, so much so that we can miss the present moment where, inevitably, God will be. 

Perhaps we have learnt in 2020 how important it is to have hope. Living in a time of pandemic has meant that many sacrifices have been made. We have not been able to participate in the many activities that we would normally do without thinking about twice. By restricting our freedoms, we have prevented the spread of Covid 19 and many lives have been saved.

We acknowledge that while there have been difficulties much has been achieved in 2020, including the new skill of Zooming! The media continues to give very little attention to the stories which show the best of humanity but there have been numerous examples of generosity and courage which have provided hope for those in need. Perhaps a visit to Catherine McAuley Westmead could show how the school community has overwhelmingly responded to requests from the Society of St Vincent de Paul and Jesuit Refugee Service to add a little hope to people experiencing hardship. 

As 2020 draws to a close, we remain people of hope who look forward to better things to come in 2021 and beyond. We wish every family the joy of the Christ Child at Christmas and look forward to continuing our mission in the new year.

Ms Genevieve Banks
Religious Education Coordinator

Year 7 Reflection Day

Year 7 students joined together on Friday, 27th November for their Reflection Day. They began the day by viewing a performance, ‘Bright Light in the Darkness’, looking at the life of Catherine McAuley. The play was performed by The Blue Whale Theatre Company.

Two of the presenters at the Year 7 Reflection Day today were teachers and ex-students Ms Van Domburg Class of 1995 and Ms McGlone Class of 2006. They both spoke about the Mercy value of Hospitality and asked students - when have you been made to feel welcome? 

An added bonus was that Ms Van Domburg chose to wear her old McAuley school uniform!


McAuley Says No To Inequality

Year 9 MAG Leaders delivered thought provoking presentations to their Homerooms on Monday this week as we strive to live out our slogan, 'McAuley Says No to Inequality’. 

The Year 9 Leaders shaped their presentations to their peers around the mercy value of courage - informing them of its importance and the opportunities they have on a daily basis to be courageous. They conveyed how the pursuit of justice and fairness often takes small and large acts of courage that as Mercy women is our moral imperative to live out. 

Natalia G., Year 9 Coolock, reflected that her MAG Leader’s presentation was "a very powerful and meaningful presentation about being courageous and listening to the presentation I felt that it was very inspiring and made me want to become more courageous, especially within my school community."

Thank you to the Year 9 MAG Leaders, Sarah (Caritas), Afia (Clare), Iman (Coolock), Isabelle (Dobson), Mary (Mercedes), Ruby (Ryan) and Arwen (Veritas), for their courageous efforts in presenting to their Homerooms and encouraging all members of the school community to find courage in the everyday! 

Miss Kate Hogan 
MAG Coordinator

Fundraising For JRS

Caritas, Coolock and Veritas Houses are continuing their fundraising for the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) with socially distanced Santa photos taking place next week, a Krispy Kreme donut stall held this week on Wednesday and a Zooper Dooper stall held on Thursday. 

During Week 9 on Monday and Tuesday students can come along to the Drama Studio with their friends (same year group only) and have their photo taken. Photos will be emailed to participating students.

So come along with your own Christmas props and a gold coin donation and help raise money for JRS!


Performing Arts Week at Catherine McAuley

This week was Performing Arts Week at Catherine McAuley! A week to celebrate our performing arts students!

Each day a new video clip was sent to parents via the Skoolbag app focusing on one area of performing arts.

Monday - Years 7, 8 & 9 Music Highlights 

Tuesday - Year 9 Drama Highlights

Wednesday - Dance Highlights

Thursday - Years 10 & 11 Drama

Friday - Years 10 & 11 Music Highlights

To introduce you to our Performing Arts Week and to view a snapshot of our talented students view this highlight reel: Welcome to Performing Arts at Catherine McAuley

McAuley Team Wins WSU Youth Leadership Masterclass Competition

Congratulations to the group of Year 10 students who have been announced as the winners of the Mental Health & Wellbeing category in the Western Sydney University (WSU) Youth Leadership Masterclass competition!! A special thank you to Ms Chahine and Ms Rossetti for facilitating this opportunity.

This competition is run by The Academy at WSU and uses project-based learning to empower students to think creatively and critically, and to become active members of their communities. The judging panel announced that it was a tough decision deciding the winners of each category with many creative submissions. The school will be contacted again in 2021 to discuss the acceptance of the prize.

Christmas Spirit in Mercy Square

The House Patrons and Leaders are helping create the Christmas spirit at Catherine McAuley with each House decorating a tree in Mercy Square. It’s only three weeks to go till Christmas!! 

Wellbeing Wednesday

Wednesdays are ‘Wellbeing Wednesdays’ at Catherine McAuley, an initiative from the Student Sport Leaders to encourage students and staff to get moving! 

Each Wednesday at lunchtime the McAuley community are encouraged to join in on a walk doing laps around the school. Last week there were 482 laps completed which is equal to a whopping 327.76km walked! On Wednesday, 2nd December Ms Refalo, Ms Rossetti and Ms Grigson joined in on a lap of the school. 

Ms Robson, Sports Coordinator, thanks everyone who participated.


Students Nominated for Texstyle and Shape Exhibition

Congratulations to the three Year 12 Textiles students from Mrs Maher’s class who have been nominated for the Texstyle and Shape Exhibition. This is a wonderful achievement as only the best works are nominated.

Congratulations to Mia L., Shenna S. and Gisella V.

The Texstyle Exhibition is coordinated by the Technology Educators Association NSW (TEANSW) and will be held in March 2021. In addition, a number of HSC Technology projects will be selected for Shape 2020 to be shown from 26th February - 9th May at the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, Powerhouse Museum. 

Congratulations to these students on their nomination! 

Year 12 2021 Geography Students Visit Jervis Bay

On Thursday and Friday of Week 7 the Year 12 2021 Geography class travelled to Jervis Bay for their mandatory fieldwork. The students were able to take a dolphin watch cruise for The People and Economic Activity (Tourism) Unit and also visited a number of beaches around Jervis Bay such as Callalla Beach, Werri Beach and Seven Mile Beach to observe the issues and management strategies used at these beaches for their Ecosystem At Risk Unit. 

Mrs Lisa Williams
HSIE/ VET Teacher

Year 11 Photography and Digital Media Artworks

The Year 11 Photography and Digital Media students have been busy all year creating some amazing artworks. Students have showcased their technical skills using Photoshop tools. A selection of these artworks from a range of projects completed throughout the course are shown below.

Year 10 Ninjas

The Year 10 PASS classes attended ‘Ninja 101’ on Monday, 30th November as part of our Lifestyle, Leisure and Recreation Unit. Located in Prospect, we eagerly took to the ninja course which consisted of a variety of challenging obstacles including swinging monkey bars, balance beams, cargo nets and a series of difficult upper body challenges. The entire course was just like the popular Australian Ninja Warrior TV series. 

The highlight of the course had to be conquering the warped wall. There were three ability levels of the warped wall - 1.5m, 3.5m and 5m. The 3.5 metre wall was the most challenging obstacle of the course and all students bonded together to support and encourage those who attempted and succeeded the 3.5m wall. Eight of 38 students in attendance were successful in conquering the warped wall, which was such a massive achievement! The atmosphere was incredible as students attempted this difficult obstacle, as we all gathered round and continuously cheered on and showed immense support for the girls who attempted the 3.5 metre wall. 

Our upper body and core muscles were really put to the test during the morning session. We would like to thank Miss Brincat for organising this exciting excursion and to Mrs Flynn and Mrs Beadman our PASS teachers for their support on the day. 

Lyacristabel and Chiara
Year 10 PASS Students

Students Participate In Work Orientation Day

On Wednesday, 2nd December, seven Year 9 students participated in a Work Orientation Day. This enrichment experience was conducted by Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta’s Post School Options team and focussed on developing work readiness skills such as safety in the workplace and workplace rights and responsibilities.

Ms Margaret Whyntie
Specialist Teacher: Diversity

Year 8 Ceramic Pop Art Exhibition

It was very colourful on Wednesday this week in Mercy Square with the Visual Arts Department holding a Year 8 Visual Arts exhibition showcasing the students’ ceramic pop art works. The focus was on food objects from popular culture and the standard of work was fantastic!

Year 7 French Students Make La Crepes

La crêpe, a thin type of pancake, is very popular in France. Traditionally, there are two types (les crêpes salées or les galettes), made with buckwheat flour and considered to be from the region Bretagne in France's North-West; and sweet (les crêpes sucrées), made with wheat flour.

La crêpe is enjoyed as an easy, cheap and delicious food, but it also has a dedicated day on the French calendar. On 2nd February some people enjoy making and eating crêpes to commemorate la Chandeleur - the religious holiday of Candlemas.

Year 7 studied a French sweet and savory crêpe recipe in-class and learned how to find the meanings of any words they could not guess by using a French-English dictionary. 

Photos below show some of the masterchef creations Year 7 students made for their families.

Miss Emily Nenchev
French Teacher

Year 7 Self Portraits

Year 7 students in Visual Arts have been completing symbolic self-portraits. A sample of these from Ms Fernandes/Miss Breen’s class and Mrs Lane’s class are shown here. More examples are on the school Facebook and Instagram pages. Mrs Lane explains that the self portraits from her class richly illustrate aspects of their world and include meaningful symbolism showcasing personal interests and narratives.


Year 7 History Students Mummification Project

In Week 4 this term, History students in 7.6 had the opportunity to 'mummify' apples as part of their study of mummification in Ancient Egypt. UNSW Student Teacher, Ms Emma Tang, organised a series of lessons where students mummified apples using a process of dehydration. After two weeks, the 'mummified' remains were wrapped in 'bandages' and placed into sarcophagi adorned with Ancient Egyptian religious symbols and hieroglyphics.

Year 7 RE Create Their Own Modern Day Covenant

Year 7 Religious Education students with Ms Van Domburg were asked to create their own modern day covenant for their last assessment task. Aradhana H., 7RE3, created a wonderful diorama for her covenant story - If you would treat each other as equals just the way I created you, then I will bless you with peace and multiply your joy and blessings. Aradhana used a scale to show equality and balance with one side holding a man, woman, child and a person with a disability and the other side holding a dove and three medallions symbolising God’s peace and blessings.

Year 9 Dance Piece ‘Hurt Me’

Students in Year 9 Dance with Ms Smith have performed a contemporary/lyrical dance piece this term called ‘Hurt Me’. The students have been learning about applying performance quality to dance work.

Year 9 International Studies Students Tour Bankstown and Its Multicultural Food Choices

The two Year 9 International Studies classes visited Bankstown on Friday, 20th November to tour the area and hear about its history and multiculturalism. This excursion took place as part of their Culture and Food Unit. The students had the opportunity to taste Vietnamese, Lebanese and Greek foods with most students able to try at least one new food which they have not tried before.

Year 10 Food Technology Experiment With Cake Decorating

Year 10 Food Technology students with Ms Maher have been experimenting with piping and chocolate decorating techniques. Looks delicious!


MCCS Cricket Grand Final Champions

Congratulations to all the McAuley Cricket Teams for making the grand final held on Thursday this week. Both the Senior and Junior Teams have won the competition! The Maroon Senior Cricket Team defeated the Teal Senior Cricket Team with a final score of 32-28 and the Junior Team defeated Marist Sisters Woolwich with a final score of 46-41.


The 2020 MCCS Cricket competitions concluded on Thursday, 3rd December after a Covid reduced season of four weeks duration. The Junior competition final was played between Marist Sisters Woolwich and McAuley Junior Teal. Woolwich won the toss and sent McAuley into bat. Thanks to the efforts of Lucy W. (retired not out 30) and Elissa L. (8), McAuley were able to make a score of 1-46 from their seven overs. At the end of four overs, Woolwich were ahead of the asking rate at 0-28 but wickets to Delphine F. and Elissa L. changed the momentum of their reply. Woolwich finished with 2-41, losing by five runs. Not surprisingly, our player of the match was Lucy W.

Like 2019, the Open competition final was an all McAuley affair. Hannah H. took a wicket with the first ball of the game to give the Teal team a perfect start. However, steady accumulation from Annabelle H. (4), Ashrya C. (15 n/o) and Catherine Z. (6 n/o) helped the Maroon team reach a total of 2-32 from their seven overs. Teal worked themselves into a winning position but the loss of Mitali K. (10) at the end of the fifth over stalled their momentum. Excellent overs from Catherine Z. and Hannah F. brought the Maroons victory by 4 runs despite the best efforts of Ketaki N. (8 n/o). Ashrya C. was a deserving player of the match.

Both finals were played in excellent spirit and all girls can be proud of their efforts. Looking forward to a full eight week season next year.  

Mr Tony Taniane
Cricket Coach

MCCS OzTag Grand Final Champions

Congratulations to the MCCS Open OzTag Team on winning the grand final! The grand final was also played on Thursday against Marist Sisters Woolwich and the McAuley team won 6-2.

Well done to the Junior Team who also played in their grand final against Marist Sisters and were beaten 8-1.


Friday, 11th DecemberYears 10 /11 Award Ceremony : 9am - 10:30am
Years 7 - 9 Award Ceremony: 11:30am - 1pm
Monday, 14th December and Tuesday, 15th December

Alternate Program Days

Wednesday, 16th DecemberYears 7 - 11 Parent / Teacher / Student Meetings, 8:30am - 4pm
Thursday, 17th DecemberStaff Professional Learning Day
Friday, 18th December

Staff Professional Learning Day
HSC ATAR Morning Tea
Last Day of Term 4

Wednesday, 27th January 2021Staff Professional Learning Day
Thursday, 28th JanuaryYears 7 and 11 students commence Term 1 2021
Friday, 29th JanuaryYears 8, 9, 10 and 12 students commence Term 1 2021
Thursday, 4th FebruaryOpening School Mass
Tuesday, 9th FebruaryWhole School Photos
Friday, 12th FebruaryWelcome to Year 7 Parents' Evening


Year 9 Careers Day

Year 9 students participated in a Careers Day last week on Wednesday, 25th November. The day was well received by all students who gained valuable insights in career life post school. 

The students were able to listen to a number of presentations including one from guest speaker, Kathryn Taylor from Turning Point Consulting. Ms Taylor took students through a method of identifying their strengths, covering four main styles: strategic thinking, executing, relationship building and influencing. The students drafted a resume throughout her workshop drawing on some of their experience and achievements. She also left students with some resources which can be accessed from her website:

A key message Ms Chahine made to the students in her presentation was that career development involves much more than planning to study a course or choosing a job. Career development occurs over a lifetime involving: 

  • Understanding yourself

  • Exploring work

  • Developing your skills

  • Setting goals

  • Making informed decisions

  • Knowing options

As students look ahead to the future, one of the ways that they can best prepare is to focus on developing their skills. Skills are the currency for employability, and while all students need to strive for academic success, skills and experience are what set candidates apart.

For many students, the day was a realisation that getting involved in optional school activities and also extra-curricular activities and volunteering is an important part of developing their skills and their personal brand. Enabling your daughter to have a part-time job while at school fosters good time management, teamwork and communication skills in a different environment. It is these activities and outside of school commitments that senior students require to be eligible for special applications for scholarships, early entry to university, cadetships and traineeships.

The second part of the day involved students researching a career with predicted strong or very strong growth with the purpose of creating a persuasive video. Students used ‘The Job Outlook’ and video editing site Biteable to assist them with this task.  


Book Club Review By Year 10 Student

Book Club is all you could expect it to be, and so much more! Now I know I may sound like a nerd, (and if being an avid member of the Book Club makes me one, so be it!) but with our legendary librarian Ms Sabeh by our side, we tackle the moral questions that arise in novels like ‘North and South’ by Elizabeth Gaskell and ‘The Librarian of Auschwitz’ by Antonio Iturbe, while also discussing what makes a good book so good. 

Whether it’s over a hot cup of tea or the diagram of a family tree (thank you 'North and South' for the confusing character line-up), Thursday afternoon Book Club is both extremely beneficial to my English study and analysis skills, and a good laugh with a lovely group of friends. Ms Sabeh has inspired me, as well as my peers to go out and read books you wouldn’t otherwise read and truly appreciate the subtle art that is creative writing.

Year 10


Kiss & Drop Changes for 2021

Dear Parents & Carers,

For those families that drop off their child(ren) in the morning utilising the designated “Kiss & Drop” area there will be some changes for next year. In consultation with Parramatta City Council, traffic consultants, Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta and school principals there will be key modifications commencing in 2021.

These include;

  • 10 additional car bays to provide greater opportunities to drop of your child(ren)
  • Extended footpaths to allow safe and alternative access

In 2021 we will provide greater detail of these changes including practices and procedures that will require your attention. We are striving to ensure greater efficiency in dropping off students at school while maintaining high standards of safety.

Gary Borg
Coordinator Westmead Catholic Community

Reminder To Students and Parents

Second Hand Uniforms

Do You Have Any Second Hand Uniform Items for Sale? 

Do You Wish To Purchase Any Second Hand Uniform Items?

The school has had a number of requests regarding second hand uniforms and although our school uniform shop does not sell second hand items directly we have set up an area on the school website for parents to list their items for sale.

If you are interested in purchasing second hand uniform items perhaps you might like to check the school website under ‘Enrolments / Uniform Shop’ and see what items are listed. 

If you are a parent with an item to sell please email with your item details and photos. The school website under ‘Enrolments / Uniform Shop’ gives you more information.

The Learning Log

A newsletter from the Student Leaders of Learning

Catherine McAuley Parent Business Directory

A reminder that the school has a Catherine McAuley Parent Business Directory. This directory is a collection of parent owned businesses and is something you might want to consulate when you are next looking for a particular item or service.

If you would like to be included in the directory please fill out this form.