22 November 2019

From the Principal

Year 12 Formal

Last Friday night, Year 12 students and parents gathered with College staff to celebrate the Year 12 Formal at Dolton House, Darling Island.

It was a lovely social event.

The girls looked radiant and certainly relaxed having now completed their HSC.

The happy photos tell the story!

Year 11 Awards Assembly

Congratulations to all the Year 11 students who were acknowledged for having achieved their personal best in academic, religious, sporting and cultural areas at the recent Year 11 Awards Evening. These Achievement Awards remind our students to fully develop their Marist Compass by working to their potential.

It is pleasing to see so many students taking advantage of the many opportunities that are provided to them. The full list of award recipients is provided under the gallery below.

Special College Awards

Special Sport Award

Macquarie University Leaders and Achievers Award

Year 11 Award Recipients


Parent Helper Mass and High-Tea

I would like to invite all our Parent Helpers and Parent Engagement volunteers to a “Thank you” Mass and High Tea on 3 December, 2.30 - 4.00pm at the College. This celebration recognises the generous work of our parents, their voluntary contribution of time as well as the enthusiasm and support they give the College. We continue to see a much higher number of parent volunteers assisting at College events and increased “Parent-Friending” through our new Parent Engagement Model. This is a real way for parents to get to know the parents on the same year level as their daughter while contributing to the “Marist Spirit” of building community.

Please mark this 3 December afternoon in your diaries. Your daughter can travel home with you afterwards. I look forward to celebrating with parents at this event.

Dr Anne Ireland, Principal

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools -Charter #2, #8 & #11

From the Assistant Principal

Final Weeks

Last week brought our Years 7 to 10 Students to the end of the formal assessment period for 2019. While I am sure this has also brought them great relief and an easing of pressure, there is still significant learning to take place over the final weeks of the term. I encourage parents/carers to talk with their daughters about the importance of staying focused in class and maximising every opportunity for learning. There are still a number of formal assessment tasks to take place or be submitted by our Year 11 Students who have started the HSC Course this term. These final weeks for them are also very important and should be the time where they are scoping out work that they may engage with over the holiday period.

It was wonderful to be able to celebrate with Year 11 Students and their parents, their great achievements in the Preliminary Course at the Year 11 Awards Ceremony on Monday night. I congratulate all students who achieved an award in the academic, sporting and cultural domains, as well as those who received awards for their significant contributions to the life of the College. I extend my congratulations to all Year 11 Students who are able to say that they gave of their best to their studies and contributed to the broader life of the College. 

As we approach the end of the year, our girls have been preparing and rehearsing for Gala Day. When speaking with Year 7 Students about Gala Day, it is lovely to see them so involved in the rehearsals and responding to the leadership of our Year 11 Students. It is such a delight to see the curiosity in the Year 7 Students regarding how Gala Day unfolds. Their anticipation is palpable! I thank our Year 11 Students who have so willingly stepped up to the responsibility of preparing our Years 7 to 10 Students for this significant event for the term.

Ms Marietta Taliana, Assistant Principal

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #2 & #8

From the Religious Education Coordinator

Thank you!

Following our last newsletter, we have been overwhelmed by the response to assist with making sandwiches for the St Vincent de Paul Night Patrol in December.

We have now had to close applications but given the huge success of the project so far, we are looking to expand into 2020 and get as many families involved in this wonderful initiative as possible. 

A Need to Find Silence

On the 12 November, four of our Liturgy Captains, Tamar Mazmanian, Eva Vumbaca, Emily Hansen and Gemma Gibbons, traveled to St Mary’s Cathedral for the annual Archbishop’s Student Leadership Forum. The forum was an opportunity for these leaders to join students from around the Archdiocese and discuss how they can be modern, contemporary and effective Catholic leaders. Our students had an opportunity to speak with Archbishop Anthony Fisher and who listened intently to their feedback and suggestions. The forum concluded with a 'Q&A' with the Archbishop followed by a prayer service. 

A large percentage of the feedback from students focused on the challenges and distractions that they face in our fast-paced, secular world. They discussed the many difficulties of being a Catholic and Catholic leader in this climate. Many students talked about their peers, phones, social media, gaming and commercialism as significant distractors from their faith and from others. No doubt many of these facets of modern Australia distract all of us from living a Christ-centred life. The ABC program, Four Corners, ran an extremely engaging program last week on the effects of technology on literacy results in Australia. The effect technology especially smartphones has had in the last five years is evident in NAPLAN and other standardised testing, as our students are becoming skim readers due to their scrolling habits. The program interviewed two teenagers who stated that on average they spend 6 hours an evening on their phone or computer. A key element of living a Christ-centred life is the need for patience and contemplation. The practice of lectio divina is a contemplative way to read short passages of sacred text and discover meanings running deeper than the literal layer.

  • With the first reading of the sacred text, listen with your heart’s ear for a phrase or word that stands out for you. 

  • During the second reading, reflect on what touches you, perhaps speaking that response aloud or writing in a journal. 

  • After reading the passage a third time, respond with a prayer or expression of what you have experienced and ask yourself what this passage calls you to. 

  • Finally, after a fourth reading, rest in silence.

Throughout our RE curriculum, we have incorporated lectio divina that helps to improve students becoming more aware and present to the world around them. However, finding silence, finding time to think, to listen, is a skill that we seem to be losing.

As the psychologist, Stephen Covey said, “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” He wrote this over 25 years ago and I fear with the instant gratification of our secular, consumer world with all of us posting pictures of our ‘best life’  on Insta; have we stopped listening to each other and to God? How can we recapture this? And what advice can we provide young people today who are searching for meaning and purpose? In our faith, we turn to the Gospels and to Jesus, to find the truth, the way, and the life. 

Remembrance Day

The College stopped at 11am on Remembrance Day to commemorate the all those that have served in the defences, suffered war and to pray for peace. Ms Taliana wrote about the importance of the day in the last Newsletter.

A wreath was laid by students on Cerdon Plaza beneath the flag poles.

Mr Daniel Ronchetti, Acting Religious Education Coordinator

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools -Charter #1, #2 & #11

Lest We Forget

From the Leader of Learning & Curriculum

As noted earlier in the Newsletter, this week the College celebrated the success of our Year 11 students, as they move from their Preliminary Courses to their HSC Courses. Many students have diligently applied themselves to consistently produce their very best effort and this is reflected in their work and this was reflected in the number of students who received awards.

This evening also provided an opportunity for parents/carers and students to engage in the NESA 2020 rules and procedures for the Higher School Certificate. I strongly encourage all students and parents/carers to take the time to familiarise themselves with the information that was provided to ensure there is a clear understanding of NESA and College requirements to successfully complete the HSC.

On Wednesday night, Music students in Years 9, 10 and 11 showcased their musical pieces to staff, students and parents/carers. The work and dedication by students and with the support of their teachers has allowed them to produce exemplary work. A clear reflection of students talents, creativity and hard work was evident in their individual pieces. Congratulations to all students involved.

As we approach the end of the year, I would like to draw your attention to the important dates in which parents/carers are encouraged and warmly invited to attend to witness the successes of 2019 for a range of students across Years 7 -11 :

Year 7-11 Showcase of Arts, Design & TDP: 4 December 2019

Year 7-10 Newman Symposium: 5 December 2019

Stage 4 Awards: 11 December 2019

Stage 5 Awards: 12 December 2019

Mrs Melinda Alvarez, Leader of Learning and Curriculum

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #2 & #8

Showcase of Arts and Design - 4 December

From the Leader of Wellbeing

Year 11 Awards Night

I also extend my sincerest congratulations to all Year 11 students for their achievements throughout this year. Typically, the beginning of Stage 6 is one that is met with some challenges due to adapting to a more sophisticated level of learning. For a significant portion of students, it is not uncommon for it to cause some angst; however, throughout the course of the year rewards present in many different facets. 

Let us also take a moment to remember that irrespective of year level, “the self is not something one finds, it is something one creates” (Szasz). 

Year 9 Amica Peer Support Training

Amica Peer Support Program is an initiative that the College has decided to implement leading into 2020, aimed at providing support for our new Year 7 students in easing the transition from primary school into secondary school.

Starting senior school can be a challenging stage in any young person’s life - new procedures, expectations, subjects, friends, routines can be overwhelming but by having an experienced and empathetic role model, our expectation is that it will provide our Year 7 students with a supportive and connected transition experience. 


  • A program that provides students with a supportive, fun and engaging environment whereby young people can develop understanding, skills, attitudes and strategies to improve their mental, social and emotional wellbeing.
  • It also fosters an opportunity for the Amica Peer Support leaders to provide mentoring and support for a small group of Year 7 students.
  • A point of connection whereby each Year 7 student will have an older student with whom, they will meet regularly.

The invitation is therefore extended to all Year 9 students to be trained as Amica Peer Support Leaders for 2020. The training will be on Friday 6 December between 9am – 3:15pm. The program will build the capacity of every student with the skills and confidence to run the program with another co-leader within their group.

More information will be forwarded regarding the content once numbers are confirmed. After the training, if students are interested in applying to become an Amica Leader for 2021, they are asked to complete the Amica Leaders Application form.

Thank you in anticipation and we look forward to working together in creating a greater sense of belonging and connection within our Marist Sisters’ College community.


Mrs Sia Mastro, Leader of Wellbeing 

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #6 & #8

A Word from the Counsellor

Building Respectful Relationships

As a parent or carer you play an important role in helping your daughter's build self-respect and knowing how to be respectful to others. Often young people will want to discuss with me in counselling, why they are not feeling supported in relationships with either friends, family or school, so I thought it worth reminding those adults caring for young people that they are one of the main influences of young people in helping them to have lasting, healthy relationships, in school, personal and family life.

Respect is a word that often gets used but is difficult to define. Most people would tell you they know when they are being treated respectfully. However they might have trouble knowing when their own communication is disrespectful.    

In respectful relationships, the following are put into action:

  • Rights to be safe, valued and cared for.
  • Listening and taking turns to be heard.
  • Being supported to make our own choices.
  • Freedom to disagree or negotiate without being put down, called names or hurt.
  • Being accepted as a person even if you’ve made a mistake.
  • Trust, honesty and taking care with others personal information.
  • Sexual activity is legal and consent is sought.
  • Not behaving in a way that is intimidating, especially during conflict.
  • Supporting others needs and wellbeing.
  • Not dominating others.

How can I help my daughter learn respect?

As a parent, recall as a child how you learned what respect and disrespect looks like. Take stock of how you and others in your family communicate, particularly when under stress. Did respect get earned from love, care and consideration or enforced through fear, intimidation and controlling behaviours?

Young people look to the adults around them for role modelling. For example, when a parent treats their child with kindness, care and consideration, they learn to use these strengths with others. This modelling also helps young people recognise when disrespect is occurring among their peers, teachers, and family.

Similarly, if a young person is treated with humiliation, intimidation, and controlling behaviour, then it could  be that your young person will be also offering this way of being with others. This modelling makes it difficult for a young person to know when disrespect is happening among their peers, personal and family relationships and can make them more susceptible to accepting abuse in relationships.

What if I recognise I have not been a great role model?

Be honest and say so to your child, (young people are very forgiving when they feel adults are sincere in not only their words but also their actions) acknowledge that you can do better, it is never too late to show your love and care and to improve relationships and communication styles - be respectful of your young people's feelings and give them time if they ask for it. You can also attend counselling together to improve your role modelling and improve your relationship. 

What creates respectful relationships?

  • Understanding and empathy – what’s the world like right now for your young person, ask them what it is like and what is important to them? Avoiding expectations that are not realistic.
  • Active listening – "so what I heard you say is…"
  • Anger management – stop, think, speak, and avoid cursing,yelling, or humiliating and apologise if you slip up in this area.
  • Assertiveness – avoid being too passive or aggressive, say what you mean and mean what you say.
  • Conflict resolution – identify non-negotiables early, then be open to compromise, looking for a win/win outcome.
  • Problem solving and decision making – avoid imposing solutions, help young people think through the pros and cons of their choices and approaches to problems.

Respectful relationships will help your young person feel:

  • safe
  • encouraged
  • trusted
  • comfortable
  • that they matter
  • it’s okay to be honest and open
  • listened to
  • equal and fairly treated
  • valued
  • understood
  • accepted

For more parenting resources please refer to

If you have any concerns for your daughter or wish to discuss the above, please feel free to contact me, the College Counsellor, Becky Salter via or ph: 0435 659 694.

Ms Becky Salter, College Counsellor

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools -Charter #8

Canteen and Clothing Pool News

Term 4: Weeks 7 & 8 Canteen Specials

Week 7 - Wednesday 27 November & Thursday 28 November            
 Pasta salad - cabbage, carrot, corn, celery, capsicum, shallots & mayonnaise                          $6.00

Week 8 - Wednesday 4 December & Thursday 5 December
Chicken Caesar Salad - lettuce, bacon, croutons, parmesan and dressing                                   $6.00
Add avocado    $1.00

Mrs Anita Rebecchi & Mrs Clare Scott, Canteen Managers

Second Hand Clothing Pool

The Second Hand Clothing Pool opening times will be Mondays and Fridays from 8:30-9:30am or by appointment via email .

Mrs Elizabeth Campbell, Second Hand Clothing Pool Coordinator

Jarnosse News

Years 7 – 12 Resource Lists

Please find below the link which takes parents/students directly into the Campion website for ordering.

When Ordering via the Campion website, the School Code is... E5Y9

If you follow the link in Student Cloudshare no code is required.

Ms Celeste McNicholas, Leader of eLearning & Information Services

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #8 

Visual Arts News

Nomination for Art Express - Stella Houlihan (Year 12)

Congratulations to Stella on her nomination! We have fingers crossed that her art will be included in the exhibition.

Mrs Helen Landas, Creative Arts Coordinator

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #2 


The New South Wales State Schools Constitutional Convention

The New South Wales State Schools Constitutional Convention was held on the 11 November at NSW Parliament House. I was fortunate enough to attend this event along with 99 other students from NSW. The topic of discussion was ‘Change and the Australian Constitution (Amending the Constitution)’. 

To commence the day, keynote speaker Professor Anne Twomey gave an address where she commented on the origins of the Australian Constitution and possible alternatives to referendums. Her lecture was very insightful, especially as she delved into the alternative mechanisms, referring to the successes and failures of other countries. One mechanism I found particularly interesting was the 'Citizens Assembly'; a method whereby a random representative group of people are educated in sessions about areas of reform and are responsible for deciding on the outcomes.

Following this address, we were separated into five small groups where we responded to five specimen questions as a team. These questions centralised around the effectiveness of referendums, the involvement of the High Court in referendums and whether the State and non-parliamentary bodies should be able to instigate referendums. All these questions were quite controversial, and it was interesting to witness the defences each person had to their opinions.

To end the day, we all came back together as a group and participated in a mock ballot. We were given two questions that we had to agree and disagree with. These questions were related to the powers of the State and non-parliamentary bodies in instigating referendums. Interestingly, when the results were revealed, the statistics corresponded to that of the Australian general public. 

I would like to extend my gratitude to Mrs Anthony, Mrs O’Connell and Mr Nally for their organisation and assistance leading up to this event. It was certainly educational and a pleasure to participate in.

Miss Isabelle Balestriere, Year 11 Student

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #2 


Excellence in Italian

Each year the Co.As.It  awards the top five HSC  achievers in Italian with  an  award for  Excellence in Student Achievement.  Ex-student, Jacqueline Michalopoulos (Year 12 2018),  who ranked third in the state for Italian Continuers and was nominated  for one of these awards. 

Congratulations to Jacqueline on this amazing achievement!

Year 8s Awarded a Merit in Italian Competition

On Wednesday, 13 November, Elisa Timpano and Gabriella Michalopoulos in Year 8  were invited to receive a Merit Award at the Italian Forum Cultural Centre for their entry in the Co.As.It Italian Competition on a famous opera.  Only two awards were granted in each year division. As Year 8 students of Italian, Elisa and Gabriella presented a voice recording of their written Italian slideshow summarising the story of La Bohème and included details on the history and Giacomo Puccini, the composer.

It is wonderful to see Elisa and Gabriella being recognised for their Italian language skills.

Congratulations  to both Gabriella and Elisa  on this wonderful achievement.

Mrs Adelina Boray, Languages Coordinator Ms Marisa D'Ippolito, Year 8 Italian Teacher

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #2 

Education Perfect World Series Awards

A big congratulations to every student who participated in the  Education Perfect Languages  championships in August  this year.  The annual World Series is designed to extend, motivate and inspire students towards academic success.  In 2019, 310,00 +  students  answered more than 175 million questions .

The students here at MSCW  answered 74,579  questions with a Global ranking of 323rd out of 1,644 schools.  A total of 16  Awards were obtained:

Emerald Award

Katelyn Lopes answered 13,386 questions during the Education Perfect Languages Competition placing her in the top one percent of 150,000 competitors. 

Gold Award

Elissa Crees answered 5,792 questions during the Education Perfect Languages Competition placing her in the top two percent of 150,00 competitors.

Silver Awards

Chloe Metzker answered 7,169 questions during  the Education Perfect Languages Competition placing her in the top five percent of 150,00 competitors.

Elisa Timpano answered 6,573 questions during the Education Perfect Languages Competition placing her in the top five percent of 150,00 competitors.

Isha Degun answered 5,826 questions during the Education Perfect Languages Competition placing her in the top five percent of 150,00 competitors.

Gabriella Michalopoulos answered 5,781 questions during the Education Perfect Languages Competition placing her in the top five percent of 150,00 competitors.

Bronze Awards

Nellie Ebenezer answered 3,458 questions during the Education Perfect Languages Competition, placing her in the top ten percent of 150,00 competitors.

Adelaide Payne answered 1,920 questions during the Education Perfect Languages Competition,  placing her in the top ten percent of 150,00 competitors.

Jessica Wong answered 1,457 questions during the Education Perfect Languages Competition, placing her in the top ten percent of 150,00 competitors.

Emily McDowell answered 1,252 questions during the Education Perfect Languages Competition, placing her in the top ten percent of 150,00 competitors.

Credit Awards

The following students received a Credit Award placing them in the top twenty percent of 150,000 competitors from around the world:

  • Jaime Woo ( Year 8 Italian);
  • Bianca Trunzo ( Year 8 Spanish);
  • Hannah Smeulders ( Year 8 Spanish);
  • Min Joo Kim ( Year 10 French);
  • Juliana Manlulo ( Year 10 French); and
  • Ava Turnbull ( Year 8 Spanish).

Congratulations again to the girls on their diligence and achievements in Languages this year.

Mrs Adelina Boray, Languages  Coordinator

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #2 

TAS News


Tahlia Severino’s Textiles & Design Major Textile Project has been selected for inclusion in Texstyle, the annual exhibition of outstanding Major Textiles Projects developed by HSC Textiles and Design students to be held in early March 2020.


Sophia Jallian’s Design & Technology Major Design Project has been nominated for possible inclusion in Shape 2019, the annual exhibition of a selection of exemplary Major Projects developed by HSC Design and Technology, Industrial Technology and Textiles and Design students. We have fingers crossed that her project will be exhibited.

Ms Kathy Reid, TAS Coordinator

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #2 

Mini Maestros Festival 2019

Last week, on Thursday 14 November, our Mini Maestro Festival was held at the College. This festival is a musical challenge day in which our local Catholic Primary feeder schools are invited to participate. The day is divided into 4 categories, which are Band, Choir, Dance and Solo.

This festival keeps growing each year with 466 students from 8 schools in attendance this year.

The day was filled with wonderful performances and a lot of fun, with the children enjoying the opportunity to perform in front of their peers.

The talent displayed by these young members of our community was outstanding, making our judges decisions very difficult. The results for each category are as follows.

Mini Maestros 2019 - Results

Joint WinnersBandSt Mark's Drummoyne and St Mary's North Sydney
WinnerChoirSt Mary's North Sydney
WinnerDanceSt Charles Ryde
WinnerSolo PerformanceOLQP Gladesville (Zachary Burn - Saxophone)

Mini Maestros 2019

Thank you to our Year 9 Dance class for providing a group and solo performances for our young guests to enjoy.

Thanks also to Ms Jo George, Ms Amy Burrage, Mr Joel Richardson, Ms Melissa Cooper-Findlay and Mrs Caroline Marsh as well as 6 students from our Year 11 Entertainment class, without your expertise the day would not have been such a success.

Mrs Leanne Mezzina, Development/Enrolment Officer

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #2 

Sports News

CGSSSA Aquathon

The Annual CGSSSA Aquathon Championship was held on Monday 4 November at Merrylands Swimming Complex.

All MSCW students achieved solid time both in the pool and on the course across all age groups.

A special congratulations must go to:

Emma Serrao - 1st place in the 16+ years Individual event

Anastasia Lakic – 3rd place in 14 &15 years Individual event

Mary Mulvey – 4th place in 14 &15 years Individual event

Ziani Viola and Leah Russell - 4th place in the 12 &13 years team event

Mia Roders and Abby Gibson - 4th place in the 14 &15 years team event

Eden Fraser and Kalani Howard - 4th place in the 16+ years team event

3rd Overall Open Team Event

2nd Overall Junior Team Event

1st Overall Intermediate Team Event

MSCW placed 1st Overall in the Championship Trophy

The students again were a credit to the College and took out the overall trophy for the second year in-a-row.

An awesome effort


Mr Daniel Watts, Sport Coordinator

This article on College life meets The Archbishop's Charter for Catholic Schools - Charter #6 

CGSSSA Aquathon

MCCS Oztag

Week 4


MSCW 9 vs St John Paul II 5


MSCW 5 vs St John Paul II 3

Week 5


Competition cancelled due to poor air quality 


Competition cancelled due to poor air quality 

MCCS Cricket

Week 5


MSCW 0/35 vs St John Paul II 5/34


MSCW 5/28 vs Bethlehem 1/48

Week 6


Competition cancelled due to poor air quality 


Competition cancelled due to poor air quality  

MCCS Junior Waterpolo

Week 4

Junior (Years 7 & 8)

MSCW v Catherine McAuley (21-0)

Week 5

Junior (Years 7 & 8)

Competition cancelled due to poor air quality 

Community News

Woolwich Netball Club