In April 2017, Pope Francis gave a TED talk. He joined many other people in Vancouver, British Columbia for this event.
He reminded us that “the future is made of ‘yous’ not ‘Is’; it is made of encounters, because life flows through our relations with others.
The Pope reminded us of how everything is connected and of how life is about interactions. We are not autonomous and independent; we can only build the future by standing together.
It is pleasing to report that Mercy College is following the Holy Fathers guidance by building a strong future. The Board has been kept up-to-date by the Principal and her team on how the school is progressing against each of the components of the strategic plan.
Throughout the year the Board has had regular presentations by the leadership team on a variety of topics related to school performance including ATAR results, NAPLAN, Learning Enrichment and ICT developments and opportunities.
Mercy College continues to have excellent academic results from the 2016 Year Twelve students in terms of comparison to schools of similar socio-economic status. Our performance in NAPLAN has continued to improve. This increased performance aligns to the ongoing focus on a range of enrichment programs offered across all years. A key area to celebrate has been the improvement in the OLNA results, with 97.9% of students passing OLNA. Our thanks to all members of the teaching team for helping sustain students’ performances.
Congratulations to the Mercy College teams who won two CEWA Lead Awards in 2017. Only eight awards are given out each year, and the awards are testament to their work in supporting students in specific curriculum focus areas as well as providing opportunities for extension.
The Christian Service Learning Program is providing students with opportunities to help those in need as well as doing and giving for others. The program ensures that the Discipleship component of the Strategic Plan is put into action and that Mercy College ensures all involved remain committed to deepening our relationship with Jesus. In 2017, the School was awarded the Archbishop’s Spirit Award for the school’s support of LifeLink day.
The College is financially in an excellent position and our enrolment level for 2017 is at near capacity giving us strong financial security. From a funding perspective, 2017 has been a busy year with major announcements by the Federal Government and CEWA on school funding. The Board has ensured it has stayed across all of the discussions related to the change in funding and the potential impacts it will have into the future. A major focus has been looking at how we can ensure good stewardship, maintain affordable fee structures and plan for the future.
The Board has been working with the school leadership team to ensure appropriate funds are made available to ensure school maintenance and upgrades can be undertaken. Our thanks to Greg Haynes and team for their hard work and focus to make sure that we have an excellent facility to enable the school to deliver on its objectives.
Congratulations to Julie Hornby who, following an outstanding Principal’s review, had her contract extended for another five years. We thank Julie for her great leadership and stewardship of Mercy College.
It is important to mention some key milestones and events in 2017. Sr Paula McAdam, Mercy College foundation Principal, passed away in May and was remembered for her faithful service to God, her adventurous ways, kindness and, most importantly, for her attentive presence to Mercy College.
Fr Sam, our school chaplain since 2011, celebrated twenty-five years as a priest. Julie Hornby wrote very eloquently and said “Fr Sam has not only been one of God’s shepherds. He lives out our Mercy values on a daily basis. In the footsteps of our founder Catherine McAuley and the Mercy Sisters he strives to connect us to God and to the Mercy charism. Fr Sam, is truly a blessing to us all”. We thank him for his service.
Congratulations to all our Year Twelves who graduated in October. The Year Twelve Valediction evening was a wonderful experience and reflected the school’s embracing culture. The gym was packed with standing room only as we farewelled these future leaders in our community.
Thank you to our parents, for their continuing support of the vision of the College. My thanks to Julie Hornby, Principal and the Mercy College Leadership Team, all of the teaching and support staff for their ongoing commitment and support and to my fellow board members for their service.
Mr Jeffrey Williams | Chairperson, Mercy College Board