Welcome to the Catholic Schools Guide, 2014
Welcome to Catholic Schools Guide 2014 edition; a celebration of Achieving Excellence in our secondary schools. Our Guide has been published to provide feature profiles on Catholic Secondary schools in Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide in order to give parents of prospective students easy-to-access essential information. The magazine is published annually.
All information contained in the printed Guide is available at this website. To read a profile on a College, simply click the Finding A School icon. To receive a hard copy of the publication, just send us an e-mail and we shall post you a free copy. To download a PDF version simply click on the appropriate cover, enter your email address and your will then receive a free PDF version.
Each year our Guide carries a different theme. This year, our theme is ‘Achieving Excellence’. Schools across Australia need to be striving for excellence in all facets of education delivery. Teachers are striving to teach better; resources are improving; facilities are developing; and subject choice is greater than ever before. System-wide examples of curriculum provision, regardless of opinion, would include the national curriculum and the National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN); these are efforts to raise overall standards and achieve excellence.
Our feature writers this year are leading educational consultant Jennifer Nayler who provides a window into productive teaching; parenting expert Michael Grose writes on resilience and true grit; Professor Claire Wyatt-Smith, from Australian Catholic University, reflects on how we asses quality education; while Dr Tony Bracken writes on Achieving Excellence. I am grateful for their expertise and words. All are committed educationalists who see a bright future for our children and our education system.
As parents we expect our Catholic schools to teach the ‘whole person’— the intellectual, cultural, physical, moral, emotional and the spiritual. I passionately believe our schools do this and do it well. Increasingly, however, parents are looking deeper and are seeking a greater understanding of what each school can offer their child. With this in mind, I have invited each school to present two of their flagship programs that they are proud of. Naturally, all schools have more than two programs, but these give a small snapshot of what’s available. I urge parents to ask the questions to find out exactly what schools have to offer. For example, ask about extension science and mathematics programs; remediation support; talented and gifted programs; programs for the arts; and sports programs. Find out what awards the school has won and what extension activities are available. Look at trend data for academic results. Importantly, ask what programs are in place to improve performance.
Once again, the Catholic Schools Guide is delighted to be supporting the wonderful work of Caritas Australia. I urge all readers to read the emotive piece on 18 year old Maristely, from São Paulo in Brazil. Caritas’ flagship schools program is Project Compassion, which is one of Australia’s largest annual humanitarian fundraising campaigns. Please encourage your school or College, if not already involved, to get on board!
Many parents ask me for advice when visiting schools. So I have written a short booklet with 23 ‘essential tips’ to help parents when considering a College for their child. Remember, one size does not fit all. Each child is special and many have particular needs that certain schools are more adept at delivering than others. Ask lots of questions, read the prospectus, go to more than one Open Day and take a tour on an ordinary school day. You can purchase a copy by clicking on the icon over on the left hand column.
The Catholic Schools Guide is an independent publication. Please contact me with your comments and suggestions.
Catholic Schools Guide