Executive Director’s start of year message

02 February 2024

Dear Colleagues, Parents and Friends of Catholic Education

The attached photograph shows my grandchildren, five of whom currently attend Catholic schools. My eldest grandchild graduated from a Catholic school at the end of 2022, and my two-year-old grandson will be attending his local Catholic school for pre-kindy in a couple of years. Apart from being most special to me, I am reassured by the quality of education which they receive in their respective schools. I know that they are cared for and guided in their educational journeys, irrespective of their unique gifts and talents. I thank all the staff who have and will continue to support them as they progress through their school years in Catholic education.

We begin another year of Catholic education in Western Australia knowing that more families than ever before are choosing a Catholic school for their children. I extend a warm welcome to these new families who have joined one of our 162 school communities, while welcoming back those children and families who continue their schooling in Catholic education.

At the end of January, we welcomed and commissioned over 400 new school-based staff, who have been called to the vocation of working in Catholic education by providing Christ-centred and child-focused opportunities to our students. Our staff members are so important in supporting the academic, social, and spiritual growth of our 80,000 students. I congratulate and thank both our new and existing staff and wish them well for the year ahead. Over 10,000 staff work in our Catholic schools, always seeking to provide the best possible education for our students.

Catholic schools are about authentic partnerships between parents, students, and staff. It is only when all members of our Catholic education communities work together that our children will have the opportunity to flourish and excel. We have already celebrated the excellence of some of our Year 12, 2023 high achievers at a special Academic Excellence celebration held at the Chapel of St Michael the Archangel in West Leederville. Meeting these impressive young people from Catholic schools across the State confirmed for me that our schools give students opportunities, supported by our staff, to thrive and instil a spirit of service which encourages them to be contributing members of their communities. I wish all Year 12 graduates from 2023 every success as they begin the next phase of their lives.

The first months of 2024 will witness an exciting new development as we break ground on the new Kindergarten to Year 12 College in Madora Bay, adding to the Catholic education footprint in an area of dramatic population growth. The new principal, Anita O’Donohue, will begin enrolling students for the junior years ready for the opening of the school in 2025. Works will also begin on the two sites of Mel Maria Catholic Primary School – St Joseph Pignatelli Campus in Attadale and the Pater Noster Campus in Myaree which will facilitate the roll-out of its new world class innovative education model.

A new year also signals a chance for new beginnings, changes, and hopes. This year sees some changes to the Executive Team at Catholic Education WA. Having begun my term as Executive Director, I am joined by Annette Morey as the Deputy Executive Director for the next twelve months. Annette is a very experienced principal and joins the CEWA Executive from Mater Dei College. Together we lead an Executive and senior leadership team which is dedicated to ensuring Principals and school leaders are supported to do what they do best – deliver quality Catholic education to our children!

I would like to wish everyone a happy, safe, and productive 2024 enriched by the support of our Catholic education system.

Wayne Bull
Executive Director

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