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NEW LIFE walk in new life

SPRING 2011

MATER MARIA CATHOLIC COLLEGE A BIANNUAL MAGAZINE FOR PAST STUDENTS AND FRIENDS OF THE COLLEGE

5 FOREST ROAD WARRIEWOOD NSW 2102 AUSTRALIA TELEPHONE 02 9997 7044 FACSIMILE 02 9997 6042 WEBSITE www.matermaria.nsw.edu.au

INFORMATION CENTRE REFURBISHMENT We are delighted to announce the completion of our Information Centre refurbishment in the Ducker Building. Over the past months, the former library space has been extended into the old Amiel (Block E) classrooms and is now over 500m2. This improved learning centre is educationally flexible, offering students and teachers alike new and innovate ways of learning and accessing information resources. The refurbishment program was instituted through discussion around best practice pedagogy to cater for interdependent, student-centred learning. This has led to the design of flexible learning spaces which encourage teachers to enhance each student’s learning experience and promote inquiry in our information-rich and technologically-driven society.

The Information Centre provides a context where students are able to work independently on using ICLT resources as well as traditional printed media. The Information Centre now includes three seminar rooms equipped with electronic whiteboards, notebook trolleys and data projectors. In addition, iMac and PC computer spaces have been created as well as comfortable and engaging reading spaces. Excitingly this will also facilitate a substantial expansion of the fiction collection. In total, the project has cost just over $200,000.00 and has been funded by the College with some assistance from the Australian Government’s National Secondary School Computer program.


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NEW LIFE walk in new life

SPRING 2011

MATER MARIA CATHOLIC COLLEGE

WELCOME Welcome to the Spring 2011 edition of New Life. The past few months of College life have been filled with many events which have provided our College with moments to reflect, pray, learn and develop as a community of disciples. Most recently the College has undergone a formal review and registration process, facilitated by the Catholic Schools Office, Diocese of Broken Bay, on behalf of the NSW Board of Studies. I am happy to announce that the College is compliant in all areas and will receive registration and accreditation as a consequence. In May, our community joined together for Mater Maria Day and our special guest was Sister Pauline Coll sgs, a former staff member of the College and

the last Sister of the Good Samaritan to leave Mater Maria in 1990. She spoke to the students and staff as part of our Mater Maria Day celebrations in a way that connected us all to the Good Samaritan story and our call to be dignified human beings who act justly. We are now on the eve of our fiftieth anniversary celebrations, and in this edition of New Life, we have provided our calendar of events for our 2012 celebrations. We also take a step back in time and report on times at Mater in earlier days.

able to join us for any of the events detailed in this publication. Please remember to keep us informed of your progress and remember that you are always welcome at Mater Maria Catholic College. With best wishes

Julie Terry Principal

As we journey towards our Golden Jubilee celebrations in 2012, we hope you continue to stay connected to your College community and are

SCHOOL REVIEW On June 28 and 29 the College completed the second stage of its School Review and Registration process, conducted by the Catholic Schools Office on behalf of the NSW Board of Studies. The panel was at the College for a total of three days ensuring compliance and quality assurance across all areas of College life. The first stage of the review process, known as Tier One, was held earlier in the month and involved a panel of over twenty-four members who ensured compliance to NSW Board of Studies requirements and Australian Government accountability in relation to staff, curriculum, attendance, facilities, pastoral care and financial reporting. Each key learning area as well as the College as a whole presented digital documentation validating mandated requirements. At the conclusion of the Tier Two process, the panel provided the College with a list of commendations and recommendations. It was most rewarding to have one of the panel members state in the summary that the experiences at Mater Maria for students and for members of the wider Mater community are life-giving, which is an indication that as a College we live out John’s Gospel 10:10 I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

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NEW LIFE

SPRING 2011

MATER MARIA CATHOLIC COLLEGE

walk in new life

STRATEGIC PLAN 2011-2013 In May, the College presented its new Strategic Plan goals for 2011 - 2013. During the second half of 2010, the College was involved in an external stakeholders’ satisfaction survey which engaged members of our community in a data collection process. This has been the foundation of our analysis and planning. Our College has a proud history of hospitality and a tradition of nurturing. Our principal directions over the next three years are summed up in three key statements focused on our Mission in Context, Education for Personal Excellence and Organisational Support. In short, our focus at Mater Maria Catholic College is to encourage a life-long love of learning and growth towards fulfilment of our personal call to be fully alive as Disciples of Christ.

During 2011 our annual School Improvement agenda, drawn from the Strategic directions, will be centred on two themes: Discipleship in the Good Samaritan Tradition and Leadership of High Quality Learning. We hope our new Strategic Plan 2011 - 2013 and the annual School Improvement agenda provide all members of our community the opportunity to learn and grow together over the coming years. Each member of our community has a part to play in the implementation of this plan and the development of our strategic goals.

G JOIN US IN PREPARATION FOR OUR FIFTIETH YEAR CELEBRATIONS IN 2012 In 2012, the College will celebrate fifty years of life and being. Throughout 2012, the College will acknowledge its rich community spirit which was initiated by the Sisters of the Good Samaritan and has been carried on by thousands of students, staff and parents who have contributed so greatly to our College community. As we journey towards our Golden Jubilee celebrations in 2012, we invite all those current students, past parents and friends of the College to contact us with their recollections of their time at the College. From first day student memories in the 1960s to special reminiscences of school days in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s or this past decade, help us to record our College’s narrative in a fiftieth year anniversary publication. We are also collecting photographs, past College publications and memorabilia. For further information contact our Business Manager, Mark Suters, on 02 9997 7044 or email mark.suters@dbb.catholic.edu.au.

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NEW LIFE walk in new life

SPRING 2011

MATER MARIA CATHOLIC COLLEGE

FIFTY YEARS IN THE MAKING... MATER MARIA In this first series of snapshots of Mater Maria Catholic College's history, we look back at the Opening of the new building at the Forest Road site in 1964, the history of the Bush 'log' Chapel and the 1994 bushfires which came dangerously close to the destruction of buildings. It is almost fifty years since a secondary school for Catholic girls opened on the grounds of St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School Narrabeen. The new school was called St Joseph’s Girls’ High School and had an initial enrolment of thirty eight students. Like the primary school it was run by the Sisters of the Good Samaritan. Mater Maria College, as it was to become known, was awaiting its buildings to be completed on its present site in Forest Road, Warriewood. In 1962 Warriewood boasted only a few decent roads and the College was serviced by a dusty track that led from a sealed road a mile or so away. From their convent the Sisters of the Good Samaritan looked out towards the ocean with scarcely a house to disturb the scene. In those days there were no townhouses, no shopping centre or industrial estates – just a spread of market gardens and bush. In 1964 the College moved to Forest Road, Warriewood, occupying eight hectares of land (which later was ceded as a gift to the Diocese by the Sisters of the Good Samaritan.) It was officially opened in June 1964 with approximately one hundred students, and, by the mid sixties consisted of a basement and science laboratory (presently the staffroom), three classrooms on the first floor and a classroom and ‘hall’ on the second floor. The ‘hall’ - really two classrooms in which the dividing wall has not been erected - doubled as a classroom, library (a few shelves of books) and a chapel. These were the days of pioneering where the staff strove under the inspired leadership of Sister Pius McMahon and the beginnings of Mater Maria were planted.

THE BUSH ‘LOG’ CHAPEL

only benefit the staff and the students of the College, but also represent what the Canteen mothers, both past and present, had actually worked for.

Mater Maria did not always have a sacred place to celebrate its rich liturgical life. Below we look back to the erection of the Bush Chapel.

She envisaged a Chapel of simple construction in keeping with the bush surroundings of the site. “As people drive up to the College it is the first thing they will see and it will represent what the College stands for”. Initially it was hoped to build the Chapel with voluntary labour, however, it soon became apparent that it would not be possible.

In was in 1983 that the idea of the Bush Chapel came to life. Sister Therese Fleming, (Principal 1978 1984), stated that she would like the profits from the College Canteen to build something that would not

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NEW LIFE walk in new life

SPRING 2011

MATER MARIA CATHOLIC COLLEGE

S u b Tu u m P r a e s i d i u m

1962- 2 0 1 2

BUSHFIRES AT THE COLLEGE

2012 GOLDEN JUBILEE CALENDAR We are delighted to announce the following special events scheduled in 2012 to celebrate our Golden Jubilee.

The close proximity of thick bushland serves the College for ascetics, curriculum programs and outdoor education experiences, but our environment almost led to the destruction of the College with the January1994 Bushfires.

Term 1 Opening Year Mass February 7, 2012, 9.30am Marana Complex

It was certainly a black day in the history of Mater Maria - Saturday January 08, 1994 is remembered by the College as a day of bushfires. Fires were dangerously out of control across the state and were precariously on the doorstep of the College. A two hour pitched battle by a handful of firefighters and civilians prevented what seemed the imminent destruction of Mater Maria Catholic College and spread of bushfire into Warriewood Valley. At the height of the battle, the school was surrounded by tentacle-like thirty metre flames as stifling smoke enveloped the area setting an eerie scene. As a wall of flame stormed down the Escarpment towards the Murphy Building (Block F) and the Guringai Building (Block C) feelings of fear mounted. In an article titled ‘Mater Maria College saved from above’ the journalist described a cloud of smoke over the Mater Maria hill. As he arrived, Mr Bernard Edwards (Principal 1990-1994) appeared from the smoke as police, members of the navy and former student and ironman, Sean Kenny followed. Dozens of windows were shut and garden hoses were used to dampen the ten metre grassy void separating the Guringai Building (Block C) and the timber-dry bush. As the fire fighters arrived, a dramatic and menacing

In June 1984 the site was pegged out and the timber arrived. On November 14, 1984, the annual mass for the Canteen mothers was celebrated on the site. The site and a bronze commemorative plaque were blessed by Father John Ford. Also present on this momentous day was Mater Maria’s future Principal, Sister Julie Duffy (Principal 1985 - 1989) who was visiting the College at the time. At the end of 1984, excavation commenced and concrete was poured. In January 1985, the structure began to take place, gradually the building progressed

Term 2 Mater Maria Day May 24, 2012, 9.30am Marana Complex Term 3 Fiftieth Anniversary Dinner Dance Saturday August 4, 2012 7.00pm Location to be announced All parents, past students, past staff and friends of the College are welcome! waiting game began as hoses were rushed to the worst danger points to fight back flames. The firies rushed to the College car parks as more spot fires broke. A sleepy and scared possum was seen as it scurried across the bitumen and tried to hide in a hole. Only its head was covered.

Term 4 Presentation of Awards 2012 December 13, 2012 7.30pm

But it was water bombs, which helped save the College, as the fires and buildings were douched in salt water from the Pacific. Within a further thirty minutes the College appeared to be safe. The deployment of additional fire units brought the area under control as further south, towards Elanora Heights and outskirts of Warriewood, fire continued to move and threaten property and life.

and the final glass was placed. By June 28 the Chapel was lockable. The total cost was about $50 000. So many people contributed to the building of the Bush Chapel; many fathers toiled outside with landscaping; many students carried broken tiles and rock to fill around the Chapel; and many mothers who had worked in the Canteen over the years helped raise the money, and make it a reality. All involved were thrilled when on October 29, 1985 the Mater Maria Bush Chapel was officially opened with a mass and blessing celebrated by Bishop Patrick

Murphy and Father John Ford. On May 31, 2002, the Bush ‘log’ Chapel was closed in preparation for the commencement of building works at Mater Maria Catholic College. Before the Chapel’s closure, religious icons and the stained glass were retained for installation in the new Mater Maria Chapel, as the symbolic reminder of the Bush ‘log’ Chapel special place in the history of this College. The new Mater Maria Chapel opened on June 21, 2004.

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NEW LIFE

SPRING 2011

MATER MARIA CATHOLIC COLLEGE

walk in new life

TEACHING IN TIMOR I was given the privilege of embarking on an adventure to Same, a small village in Timor Leste for three weeks during term 2, 2011 with two other teachers from the Catholic Diocese of Broken Bay. We landed in Dili on June 23 and spent three nights sightseeing and collecting supplies before commencing our rough six hour four wheel drive journey along an unsealed road to Dili. We arrived full of anticipation and excitement, to happy locals who made us feel very welcome. We had a few days to get used to the small town and were woken each morning by the bells on the church tower. After the bells came the choir of dogs and roosters followed by the church choir to much relief! We taught primary Mathematics lessons to two groups of twenty five teachers all from surrounding villages in the Manufahi district. Both groups were full of energy and enjoyed the activities we led as we helped them to explore other ways of making learning fun and effective with materials they have access to. We utilised stones, chalk, string, dice and butchers paper to create many activities and possibilities. The teachers very much enjoyed the experience and treasured the resources we gave them! I truly enjoyed my experience in Timor Leste and will never forget the people and friends I met. Particularly, I will always remember the spirit of the people, a group who has been through so much and is now in the process of rebuilding its future. Phoebe Nicholson Teacher

JOIN US FOR OPEN DAY

OUR COLLEGE BUILDING Our Mater Maria Catholic College building fund is 100 per cent tax deductible. In 2003, the fund was created by our College Board to accelerate and complement funding of future building projects at the College. We are blessed with a magnificent location; our College is set high on a hill in natural bush, overlooking the Warriewood valley and the ocean beyond.

Sunday March 25, 2012 11.00am - 2.00pm As young men and women of a Catholic co-educational learning community our boys and girls are offered a spirit filled journey of quality learning and opportunities for rich and positive relationships. Our students are called to be confident global citizens, modelling respect, shared values and service to others as they are guided by our excellent teachers towards personal success.

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At Mater Maria, we place a high priority on maintaining and improving our facilities. This year, the College has completed a $200,000.00 refurbishment of our Information Centre (library). This follows substantial improvement to the College site over the past five years, including significant refurbishment to staff facilities and student services, the opening of the Fitzmaurice Learning Centre, new teaching spaces in the Gilroy and Murphy buildings and significant investment in information technology devices and wireless network services.


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NEW LIFE walk in new life

SPRING 2011

MATER MARIA CATHOLIC COLLEGE

MATER MARIA DAY On May 24, 2011 the College joined together in Eucharistic celebration for Mater Maria Day with Bishop Bernard O’Grady OP from the Catholic Parish of Pittwater. It was one of those special opportunities when the College could stop and reflect as one and acknowledge the wonderful legacy that the Sisters of the Good Samaritan have left us at our Warriewood site. Our special guest was Sr Pauline Coll sgs, a former staff member of the College and the last Sister of the Good Samaritan to leave Mater Maria in the 1990s. Sister Pauline addressed our College community at the Mater Maria Day mass as well as speaking to some classes individually the previous day. Sister Pauline spoke candidly with the students about being the best one can be in a technologically

FOUNDATION Each of us has the opportunity to contribute to Mater Maria’s growth and continual improvement. Giving to Mater Maria can take many forms, from bequests and one-off donations to contributing to our Building Fund or taking part in other initiatives. But no matter how you donate to Mater Maria, or how much you can afford to give, any donation you make will be valued and appreciated. We encourage the College community to support our annual appeal in 2011 by making a tax deductible donation which directly benefits the students and community of Mater Maria Catholic College. For further information or to donate, please email our Business Manager, Mark Suters, at mark.suters@dbb.catholic.edu.au.

driven online world. She also reflected on the dignity of each person and our call to be neighbour to others. Most recently, Sister Pauline has worked full time for the Australian Catholics Against Trafficking in Humans on the national committee and is now based in Brisbane. The week long celebrations ended with the Mater Maria Festival on Friday May 27.

DONORS The College Board, staff and students of Mater Maria Catholic College extend thanks to the following families and companies which have made generous donations to the Mater Maria Catholic College Building Foundation in the financial years 2009-2011. Scott & Suzie Duncan Carma Vesper Chris Stuart Fay Poole Helen Mary Murphy Peres Teixeira Ian Scott Inline Systems Julie Bell Mr & Mrs Brice Mr L Mallia RJ & F Poole Robin Ottowa Teresa Reilly Wendy Glassman SPRING 2011 NEW LIFE 07


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NEW LIFE

SPRING 2011

MATER MARIA CATHOLIC COLLEGE

walk in new life

DRAMA MAJOR PRODUCTION In June, the College hosted the major performance, In Memory of Jordan - two plays. Jordan was a talented Drama and English student who graduated from the College in 2007 and tragically lost his life in a pedestrian/vehicle accident in 2009. Past students, Jessica Ruhfus (Class of 2009) and Leon Huxtable (Class of 2010), directed the plays which were performed over two nights in our Byrne Theatre. The first play, Work: What is it good for?, was written by Jordan McClellan in 2007 for his Year 12 HSC English Extension 2 major project. The play centres on a book publisher’s hilarious antics to ensure that a ‘self help’ book with coherent furniture assembling instructions is never published. The second play Pick Me, by Leon Huxtable, is an absurd political satire and was also produced as part of his Year 12 Extension English 2 major project in 2010. The plays were skilfully performed by current Years 10 and 11 students and it was a delightful opportunity for our community, including past students and their parents, to return to the College in celebration of Jordan’s life and the creativity of our Mater Maria Catholic College students.

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SIGNATURE .................................................................................................................................................... DATE .......................................................................... Cheques should be made payable to the Mater Maria Catholic College Building Foundation

 Privacy Statement: Your name will be placed on our mailing list and, from time to time, we will send you information about Mater Maria Catholic College. If you wish not to receive such information, please mark the box. This payment is a 100 per cent tax deductible gift to the Mater Maria Catholic College Building Foundation.

NEW SUBSCRIBER / CHANGE OF ADDRESS - LET US KNOW PLEASE LET US KNOW IF YOU HAVE CHANGED YOUR ADDRESS OR KNOW OF SOMEONE WHO WOULD LIKE TO SUBSCRIBE TO NEW LIFE. COMPLETE DETAILS BELOW AND RETURN TO THE DIRECTOR OF SERVICES AT THE COLLEGE.

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Mater Maria New Life Magazine - Spring 2011  

Mater Maria NewLife Magazine - a magazine for current and past students and friends. Spring 2011

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