Dear Parents and Parishioners,
For those who have not yet met me, I would like to introduce myself as the Foundation Principal of St Bede’s Catholic College at Chisholm. Thank you to the parents and students I have already met for your warm welcome and hospitality.
With a long history of leadership in both systematic and independent schools, I am looking forward to the unique opportunity of leading the first newly established Catholic secondary school in the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle for a number of decades.
Set within the new and growing suburb of Chisholm, the College will initially open with Year 7 co-educational students in 2018, before expanding one year group for each of the following five years. Initially, St Bede’s will open with one large multi-purpose building and that will be strategically placed next to St Aloysius Catholic Primary School. An additional three interconnected contemporary designed buildings will open in subsequent years as the student population increases to its projected number of up to 1,100 in 2023. Access to the nearby council playing fields and the open design of the College will allow students to enjoy generous outdoor facilities.
Physically, the College will be recognised as a faith-based Catholic school; representing the story and traditions of Catholic faith; and interpersonally reflecting the core Catholic values of love, justice, reconciliation and truth. In offering a quality Catholic education, St Bede’s will be providing the opportunity for staff and students to further deepen their relationship with Jesus Christ.
St Bede’s will offer students a unique opportunity to be part of a faith-filled Catholic community committed to high standards, personal best, and service to others.
The key components that will drive the development of the school will be Faith and Identity, Learning, and Community. These components align to the Four Pillars of Learning of the United Nations, Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), namely ‘Learning to Know’, ‘Learning to Do’, ‘Learning to Be’, and ‘Learning to Live Together’.
As an inclusive community open to students of Christian denominations, there will be a clear expectation that all students will engage in all aspects of the College life, including timetabled religious education classes, Masses, prayer and retreats. Whilst respecting the likely diverse religious and cultural composition of the College student body, a positive engagement in and support of the Catholic faith tradition and values will be a clear enrolment expectation.
A planning group has been meeting for more than two years to plan for the establishment of a new College in your community. The decision to name the College, St Bede’s Catholic College, came after great deliberation and significant time has already been spent clarifying the mission and vision for this exciting new community of St Bede's.