St Brigid's College Horsham

Weekly eNewsletter

Principal's Report

Dear Families,

As the St Brigid’s community enter 2021, we can look back with pride at how resilient we were throughout 2020 and give thanks that we live in a fortunate country. This year will be one of new beginnings for St Brigid’s College. Many students will be joining us for the first time and we also welcome Ashlee Grace as a graduate Health and Maths teachers as well as welcoming back Jess Giampaolo from maternity leave. I myself am excited at the prospect of leading the St Brigid’s community as Principal in 2021. I have had the fortune to have benefitted from five quite different schools in my career and I can already sense that this school has great potential, a welcoming spirit and is well resourced.

We enter the new year under a new governance structure – this means we are now part of a network of schools under the umbrella of the Diocese of Ballarat Catholic Education Limited (DOBCEL). In the words of our Bishop, The Most Reverend Paul Bird, now is time for

‘strategies to enhance the partnerships between students, teachers, parents, priests and parishioners in our local communities; affirming effective methods of teaching and learning and also promoting fresh methods that respond to new needs and opportunities’.

This year will be all about partnerships. New and old partnerships. I will be looking forward to meeting families at the upcoming College events and hearing your stories and ideas. The College is looking to build strong relationships with Parish primary schools here in Horsham and in the outlying towns so that we can offer a great Catholic education to those seeking it. Partnerships are also being formed with industry, community groups and tertiary education providers, so that the learning at St Brigid’s will prepare our students for the life they will lead.

On Monday, 1 Feb, we celebrate the Feast Day of St Brigid. Many images of St Brigid show her holding a lamp which is the symbol of learning and wisdom. There is much we can learn from her example in valuing learning. I believe strongly in Life Long Learning and I know I have much to learn about life in Horsham.

While we have been fortunate in evading much of the impact of COVID 19, I would like to remind families that we are still required to adhere to the DHHS guidelines regarding gatherings and hygiene protocols. If any student feels unwell, please stay home and inform the College. People over 12 are expected to carry a mask for occasions when they cannot socially distance.

As a representative of our college community, I would like to pass on our deepest sympathy and prayers to Indiana Weaver (student) and his family, including Jeni Allen (teacher), on the passing of his Grandmother in Adelaide over the holiday period.

Next week the Year 12 students will participate in a three day Retreat in Halls Gap which will be an opportunity to reflect on their journey so far and to consider who they want to become. This opportunity always creates life-long memories and become one of the highlights of the year. The students will be joined by our new Parish Priest, Monsignor Glynn Murphy, for a mass on Wednesday night, so I take this opportunity to extend a warm welcome to Monsignor Murphy.

Kind Regards,

Gerard Raven
Interim Principal

First Day of School 2021

We'd like to share with you a message from our new Principal, Mr Gerard Raven who would like to welcome you to 2021 at St Brigid's College.

New Year 7 Students

Calendar of Events

VET INDUCTION DAY - Wednesday 3rd February

YEAR 12 RETREAT - 3rd - 5th February

SCHOOL PHOTOS - Monday 8th February

YEAR 7 CAMP - 10th - 12th February



SWIMMING CARNIVAL - Thursday 18th February

PUBLIC HOLIDAY - Monday 8th March


YEAR 7 IMMUNISATIONS - Thursday 11th March

YEAR 9 OUTDOOR ED TRIP - 24th - 26th March

ATHLETICS CARNIVAL - Tuesday 23rd March

LAST DAY OF TERM 1 - Thursday 1st April

Teacher Advisor Schedule

All our students are assigned to a vertical homeroom consisting of students from Years 7 – 12.  Home room groups stay together for their entire school life at St Brigid’s, encouraging leadership, community and familiarity and giving students a real opportunity to know each other and their advisor.  Lifelong friendships are formed where there may not otherwise be the opportunity.

The Teacher Advisor (TA) program is part of the daily life of students. Homerooms meet for 10 minutes each morning, and approximately every six weeks each student meets individually with their Teacher Advisor to discuss and monitor their academic and pastoral progress. A report over viewing the student’s academic achievement and future goals for improvement is formulated from this interview and made available to parents via our online Parent Access Module (PAM).  This regular contact builds trust and strong relationships between students, teachers and families.   It ensures that families and teachers know each student’s strengths and needs and that secure relationships are formed that guide the students along their learning journey.

Our TA Schedule for Term 1 can be found below.

Week 1 - 25th JanNo interviews this week
Week 2 - 1st FebNo interviews this week
Week 3 - 8th FebYear 7 & new students  |  Interview only
Week 4 - 15th Feb

Year 12  |  Assessment tasks dated between 29/01 & 14/02

Week 5 - 22nd Feb

Year 11  |   Assessment tasks dated between 29/01 & 21/02

Week 6 - 1st Mar

Year 10  |  Assessment tasks dated between 29/01 & 28/02

Week 7 - 8th MarInterview catch-up week
Week 8 - 15th Mar

Year 9  |  Assessment tasks dated between 29/01 & 14/03

Week 9 - 22nd Mar

Year 8  |  Assessment tasks dated between 29/01 & 21/03

Week 10 - 29th Mar

Year 7  |  Assessment tasks dated between 29/01 & 28/03

The Canteen

Our College Canteen is open every day at Recess and Lunchtimes. Payments can only be made by cash.

Friendly Reminder

School Drop-Off and Pick-Up

Just a friendly reminder for families - At school drop-off and pick-up please refrain from parking in the bus parking area at the very front of the school. Thank you for your assistance.

What Do You Recommend?

Don't you love hearing about a new podcast or show from a friend? Well consider us that friend. 
Each week we will ask students and staff members to recommend a book, a TV series or film and a podcast.  



As lead vocalist for the iconic rock band Queen, Freddie Mercury’s unmatched skills as a songwriter and flamboyant showmanship made him a superstar, and Queen a household name. But few people ever really glimpsed the man behind the glittering faÇade.     Mercury was the first major rock star to die from AIDS. Now, twenty years after his death, those closest to him are finally opening up about this pivotal figure in rock n’ roll. With unprecedented access to Mercury’s tribe, rock journalist Lesley-Ann Jones has crafted the definitive account of Mercury’s legendary life. Jones details Queen’s slow but steady rise to fame, and Mercury’s descent into dangerous, pleasure-seeking excesses. Jones doesn’t shy away from Mercury’s often colorful lifestyle—this was, after all, a man who once declared, “Darling, I’m doing everything with everyone.” 

Recommended by Mrs Louise Nield

TV Series


Subscription Service: Stan
Rating: PG

After an unusual event, whip-smart computer coder Zoey Clarke magically begins to hear people's innermost wants and desires through popular songs. Suddenly, strangers, friends, co-workers and family are unknowingly singing their feelings -- just to her. At first, Zoey questions her own sanity,but after some guidance from Mo, her musically attuned neighbor, and making a breakthrough with her ailing father, Zoey soon realizes this unwanted curse may just be an amazing and wonderful gift --as she now connects with the world like never before.

Recommended by Mrs Rhiannon Abernethy



In a matter of minutes, the Squiz Today podcast will get you across the news headlines. Published each weekday at 6.00am, this short  daily news podcast (8 minutes) is designed to fit into your morning routine – perfect for the commute, the gym or over a morning coffee.

There is also now a companion "Squiz Kids"podcast, with similar content but aimed at 8 to 12 year olds, dropped at 7.00am).

Recommended by Mrs Geordie Butler


In the last weeks of Remote teaching last year, activity in the learning of Languages at St Brigid's was given a boost by a grant from the Catholic Education Office which permitted us to set up a programme of Covid-safe in-school calligraphy classes for small groups of our senior students of Japanese with local native-speaker Japanese experts. This was a welcome opportunity to inject some authenticity into our teaching and learning of Japanese.  

Our native-speaker teacher Yoko Cross and her friend Akina Koh are both highly trained experts in Japanese calligraphy, which is much more than a way of writing in Japan: it is a highly valued and respected art-form based on a strict mastery of basic brush-stroke types, graceful balance of the components of each character, and projection of the strength of spirit of the artist. Our students are only at the start of their understanding of this; writing in Japanese script is a pragmatic necessity rather than an art-form, but having hands-on individually guided opportunities to write characters with focus on their shape and style rather than on their meaning and use in written communication enhanced enormously their overall skill in writing in Japanese.

Furthermore, as increasing numbers of students are choosing to continue with Japanese at higher levels, it was a major encouragement to receive a grant to acquire some advanced paged dictionaries for students to get used to using at Year 12. Google Translate is wonderful and will no doubt be the dictionary of choice for anyone learning Japanese in any context in the future, but only paged dictionaries are permitted to be used in exams and assessment tasks at Yr 12 level, so it is good to have received support in establishing a strong reference resource for our senior students.

The next College Trip to Japan would normally be being planned for this year. Current government restrictions on international travel  mean that both the 2021 visit by students from our Japanese sister school and the biennial visit that St Brigid's students would normally make to Japan this year have had to be abandoned. As the year progresses, we may be able to revisit possibilities to re-establish this important component of our teaching of Japanese at the College, and, hopefully, re-establish these programmes for 2022.

Finally, it has been decided that for the moment St Brigid's will no longer offer Italian as a general elective subject. However, the study of both Italian and French through the Victorian School of Languages Distance Education School can be supported at St Brigid's for individual students at most year levels who may wish to study these languages.

Jeni Allen

Thanks to our Sponsors