Newsletter - Volume 17 - 31 October 2019


From The Principal: Chris Caldow


2020 Mobile Phone Ban

We have made the decision to ban mobile phones throughout the school day for 2020.  Thanks to parents who responded to the survey with in excess of 70% of parent responses in support of a ban of mobile phones. Students will still bring their phones to school but they are not to be taken to class nor into the grounds at recess and lunchtimes.  Students will be responsible for locking their own phones in their lockers throughout the day.  There may be times where a staff member specifically asks students to bring their mobile phones to class to use for educational purposes such as specific apps etc. but this will be clearly communicated to students.  There will obviously be a range of sanctions for students who are caught with their mobiles which will be outlined to students over the next fortnight and to families in the next newsletter.  It is our intention to introduce this in Headstart this year.

Student Free Days this Term

Monday November 4 is a Student-Free Day to allow staff time for planning, preparation, assessment of student learning, collaboration, curriculum planning and professional learning.  This day will be student free for both campuses.  I recognize that this creates an imposition on families and thank you in advance for your ongoing support as we strive to improve student outcomes.

Friday November 22 and Monday November 25 are Student Free Days for the Broadmeadows/Senior Campus. This will allow our Senior students (Years 9 - 11) a small break between finishing exams and commencing their Headstart program and allow our staff to have a correction day to finalise grades. Our Junior students (Years 7 & 8) have exams on Friday November 22.  The Year 7 students are at the Glenroy campus and Year 8 students are at the Broadmeadows campus.

Friday November 29 is a Student-Free Day for our Years 7 & 8 students at the Glenroy campus to all our Junior campus staff time for correction and report writing for the end of year reports.

Our current Year 8 students will be involved in their 2020 Headstart program at the Senior Campus from Monday December 2 to Thursday December 5. Our current Year 7 students will remain at the Glenroy campus but will commence their 2020 Headstart program from Monday December 2 to Thursday December 5.

Year 7 Enrolments 2021

A reminder to all of our existing families that Year 7 enrolments for 2020 closed on Friday 16 August.  A number of families applied after the close of enrolment last year and it makes it very difficult to accurately plan for the following year so I ask that you submit your enrolment as soon as possible.  Often families assume that we know that there is a younger sibling but I would be very disappointed if one of our existing families missed out on an enrolment due to not submitting their enrolment in a timely manner.

Student Leadership Camp

On Friday 25 October to Sunday 27 October most of our student leaders attended our annual Student Leadership Camp at Don Bosco camp in Safety Beach.  They completed a range of team building activities and planning for the 2020 school year. I am looking forward to working with the 2020 student leaders as they displayed a high level of enthusiasm and initiative in my time at the camp. My thanks to Miss Liz Perkins for all of her organisation for the camp. Thanks also to Mr. Ernie Pisani, Ms.  Anita Duhig, Ms. Alice Taylor and Mr. Stuart Harrison for attending the Student Leadership camp over the weekend.

Farewell to Year 12 students

As our Year 12 students completed their formal classes with us last week and begin their written exams this week it is fitting that we pay tribute to them in this, their final newsletter, before their final exams finish.  For all of our Year 12 students, their behavior was impeccable throughout the final week where they completed a range of activities included a College Assembly where they were farewelled by all staff and students, their Year 12 breakfast and dress up morning and the Graduation Mass.  We take this time to reflect on their contribution and achievements over the past six years and celebrate the conclusion of their secondary education.

I take this opportunity of firstly thanking our two College Captains, Chanilka Amantha Jayakodi Arachchoge and Vishnu Satish for their leadership of the student body over 2019.  Both of these young people have worked very hard and have made a wonderful contribution this year.  I also thank all of the other Year 12 students who have held positions of leadership for their contribution to our Penola community.

I have recently spoken at a Year 12 assembly to highlight to the students the importance of remaining focused on study in the coming weeks as they approach their examinations.  I also highlighted the importance of safety in the post examination celebratory period and to look out for each other during this time to avoid any unpleasant or dangerous incidents. I encourage parents and guardians to discuss this with their children if they are going away with others to celebrate.

I encourage the Year 12 students to become active in the Penola Collegians Association next year so that they may maintain strong links with the College community into the future.  I wish all the Year 12 students every grace and blessing for their future and, in particular, wish them well in the upcoming examination period.

I am sure that all members of our community will keep our Year 12 students in their prayers over the next few weeks.  I have included below an excerpt from my speech at the Graduation Mass

“…As parents, family members and staff members, there are, no doubt, many things that we would like to say to you, our graduating students, as you prepare to leave the college and embark on the journey of adulthood.  Our hearts are filled with hopes and prayers for you, and indeed some fears and anxieties as well. I would like to share several of those hopes with you.

We hope that you will be people filled with joy.  Life is full of many wonderful gifts.  May you recognize in these gifts the spirit of our gracious and loving God.  With great joy, may you be able to place your trust and hope in God.

We hope that you will be people filled with love.  May you be able to share the gift of yourself with others and as you do so, be able to grow in self-understanding and acceptance. Out most basic human need is to love and to be loved in return.  It is difficult to love those who are selfish and totally self-centered.  As parents I thank you tonight for the privilege of educating your sons and daughters and congratulate you on your insight in working with the College to promote Christian values.

We hope that you will be people filled with peace and that you will be peace-makers.  Our world is crying out desperately for peace.  Peace-makers seek to transform the world.  May you use your energy, talents, skills and, most of all, your imagination, to create such a world.

We hope that you will be people filled with courage.  To be courageous is to be true to yourself. We pray that in all situations in your lives you will be true to your human dignity as people created in the image and likeness of a loving God.  We pray that you will be true to the ideals and values of the Christian faith, the faith in which you have been nurtured within your family, your schools and parishes.

We hope that you will be people filled with compassion.  To be compassionate is to journey with those who suffer or who are in need.  Like Saint Mary MacKillop, our College patron, may you never see a need without doing something about it.  May you recognize the great injustices in our world and be fired with a burning zeal to make the world a better place. ..”

I know this is an exciting time but it is also a pretty scary one. The future can be uncertain. Your story has not yet been written, so embrace the uncertainty. University or TAFE is great but trust me, it's not for everyone.  One of the benefits of uncertainty and change is the myriad of opportunities it provides. Who would have thought when I left school that there would be web designers, social media editors or mobile phone sellers!

To parents and family members, I say thank you for the privilege of allowing us to share in the lives of these young women and young men.  We thank you for the trust you have placed in us. I congratulate you for the work that you have done as parents and care-givers in raising such wonderful young people.  To those families of Year 12 students who this year will conclude their association with Penola, I thank you for your commitment to Catholic Education and for your support of Penola Catholic College over many years.  May you continue to be blessed in the important role than you play as parents and guardians.

Finally to the students I would like to finish by reminding you who you are.  You are Penola people and you have been educated at a College which has respected you.  You have come from families that have loved you unconditionally.  As you move into the next stage of your life travel the journey with confidence in the spirit of Jesus Christ and Saint Mary MacKillop.


For me Term 4 is the beginning of something wonderful: Spring, new journeys and for all those who love Christmas it is the beginning of the countdown to Advent.  As the end of the year approaches for the students, it is important to savour the experiences of these final few weeks at school. Taking the time to laugh with friends, enjoy the warmth of the approaching summer sun, the fragrance of the blooming blossoms and to remember how lucky we are to live in such a beautiful city. This term we will be focusing on offering thanks and goodwill to not just God within prayer, but amongst the teachers and the students as a focus within religion classes. We hope that you have the opportunity to stop in a beautiful park or on a sandy beach, and to lie down and look up at the wonderful sky that encompasses us. To take in its grandeur and simply say, ‘Thank you God for this wonderful gift of life and nature, I am eternally grateful

Spring Awakening by Lily Baker

Spring is the magical time
When the rainbow lorikeets hum and the honey suckles Blossom,
When I actively bounce down the sand dunes
And onto the pea green grass,
The waratahs and the wattles bloom,
And my heart opens to the riot of spring.
I love this time when everything comes to life,
Nature triumphs in the trees, swaying freely in the wind,
Stealing my train of thought
And making my imagination run wild.
I am inspired by this heavenly kingdom,
The tranquillity of dew droplets falling,
The mastery of the rain.
I feel connected.
Tree sap trickles down the bark of native gum trees
I examine this, calmly, curiously.
Sometimes the wind whispers to me at dusk
Giving me confidence within my body
I promise
I will always make the most of springtime.

From the Deputy Principal Head of Broadmeadows Campus: Ernie Pisani Vol 11

From the Deputy Principal Head of Broadmeadows Campus: Ernie Pisani Vol 17

Dear parents, the term is moving at a rapid pace and the senior campus is getting ready for the final stages of 2019. Last week we had a fitting finale for our Year 12 students. The final college assembly for 2019 and Graduation Mass and ceremony were tributes to them as they enter their final stages of their enrolment at …

Read more.



Can you help?

We are seeking help from staff and parents who love the theatre or could spare some time to contribute to next year’s college musical! Any support is most appreciated, even a few hours is great. I have listed the roles below and a link to further information if you are interested.


(Please email me if you would like further detail regarding a specific role or question you have.)

These first positions do require some specific skills and a level of commitment as they are responsible for the fabrication of the production prior to the initial performance. Some of these positions may not be involved once performances before an audience begin.

Theater production Roles:

Producer/Director/Musical Director/Vocal director-coach/Rehearsal accompanist /Choreographer /Movement director/Stage manager

Design roles: Lighting design/ Costume/props/make up design/Set design/ Sound design/ Composer/Playwright

These next roles are added as we get closer to the actual staging and the technical parts of the performance and the advertising and program production. Often multiple roles are covered by one person and some roles have several assistants. We encourage students to be involved as much as possible and to work with professionals where possible.

Audio engineer ( often professional company hired )
Lighting technician ( often professional company hired )
Theatrical technician ( oversee sound and lights in Venue )
Light board operator/s
Spotlight operator/s
Wardrobe supervisor ( costume source and fittings)
Backstage crew ( for all props and Set )  Stage manager is responsible
Set builders ( Carpenter and master carpenter)
Property master ( props making and sourcing )
Scenic artist
ASM (Assistance Stage Manager)
Ticketing agent
Backstage staff
Food preparation

Warm regards
James Maddocks


Italian Unit 2 Incursion: La Commedia dell’Arte:

On 18th of October, our Unit 2 Italian Class was able to participate in an entertaining and informative incursion where we were able to learn about the various characters of “La Commedia dell’Arte” in action. The incursion began with the cheerful instructor getting the class to loosen up through miming and acting out various characteristics such as arrogance. Afterwards, a few students were selected to wear a specific mask and mime being hungry. Then, we delved into the empowering speech of a female character known as “Columbina” as well as the English translation. Overall, this was a fantastic incursion where we were able to learn about “La Commedia dell’Arte” through a modern perspective.
Athraa Dawoud 10I

Here are some student comments:

Last Thursday’s Incursion was a good insight of Italian culture back in the day when Commedia dell’Arte was prominent. The enthusiastic acting and audience involvement was amazing.

The incursion we participated in on Thursday based on Commedia Dell'Arte was a great learning experience. The interactive incursion was funny and creative and the presenter, Rosa was very knowledgeable and engaged the audience to make it even more interesting and enjoyable. 

I liked how it was fun and inclusive, as all the students participated. It was also very informative and a lot was learned from it.

Our incursion about Commedia Dell'Arte was a very funny, entertaining and engaging performance. The audience were laughing and smiling throughout the humorous sketches Rosa created, and we all had fun as we learnt about Commedia Dell'Arte.

Really entertaining and engaging performance. Learnt a lot about Commedia dell'Arte

The Italian incursion from last Thursday was an amazing experience. it taught me a lot about Commedia dell'Arte . I found it very insightful and it helped all of us gain a better knowledge of the topic. 


Penola Sport Facebook Page 


Penola Art and Design Show 2019

Opening ceremony 6th November - 4pm
Mary MacKillop Auditorium Foyer
Student Awards
Refreshments provided.



Second Hand Uniform Sales 

Fortnightly Tuesdays, Broadmeadows Campus

8.45am - 10.30am

Term Four: Oct 8, Oct 22, Nov 12, Nov 26

Interested in selling your uniform?

If you wish to sell your freshly dry cleaned second hand uniform items (new logo only), you can do so by leaving them at Reception at the Broadmeadows Campus. All items must show they have been dry cleaned by having the dry cleaning tag attached. All items must contain the NEW College logo. The College will also accept NEW logo items as donations for struggling families.

Academy Uniforms run a school shop service at Broadmeadows Campus in the current second hand uniform area in the Mannes building on:

Wednesday mornings from 8:00 - 9:30am
Thursday afternoons from 3:00 - 4:00pm
Academy Uniforms are now ON-LINE

Simply go to: Academy Uniforms
Choose Penola Catholic College and enter password Broadmeadows
Orders can be sent to the School Shop or home address.

Academy Uniforms
238 Wolseley Place,
Ph: 9460 8011


Penola Catholic College

Junior Campus: 35 William Street, Glenroy, VIC 3046
Senior Campus: 29 Gibson Street, Broadmeadows, VIC 3047

Postal Address:
PO Box 637, Glenroy, VIC

Telephone:(03) 9301-2777
Fax:(03) 9301-2770