Volume 1
6 February 2020


From The Principal: Mr Chris Caldow


Welcome back to all students and families. We particularly welcome those who are joining the College community for the first time. We have a total of 273 new Year 7 students along with seven Year 8 students, three Year 9 students, four Year 10 students, four Year 11 students and one Year 12 student who are new to Penola. In total there are 292 new students at Penola out of a total enrolment of 1490 students. This means that nearly one in five students are new to Penola and I would ask all within our community to go out of their way to ensure that our new students are welcomed and supported in their transitional period. In total we have 186 new families for 2020 so a particularly warm welcome to these families. I hope that your time within the Penola community is both enriching and rewarding.

Staff and students have returned ready for another busy and hopefully successful year. Our theme for the year is “Believe in the Whisperings of God in your own Heart” (St Mary MacKillop, 1868).” This theme is particularly relevant for all of us as both we and our students and their families have a number of needs. One of the key needs within a school setting are the relationships that are established both between colleagues, students, parents and the broader community. It is these relationships that are foundational in the teaching and learning process and ultimately builds our culture in all that we do and all that we become.

We celebrate our 25 year anniversary this year through a number of events. To celebrate we have four major events planned for each component of our community. The first involved a lunch for our staff in at Albert Park on Tuesday 28 January. The second involves our Legends of Penola Dinner where we recognise and acknowledge both past and present long serving staff members. The third involves students and staff with Mary MacKillop Day which we will celebrate on Friday 7 August. The fourth involves all current members of our community with a Fete planned for Saturday, 17 October as well as a reunion.

As such, it is important that all students begin the year well in every context. It is important that the College uniform is worn well at all times; it means getting down to the core business of working hard in class and working with every teacher to produce the best set of results possible; it involves challenging oneself to participate in the vast array of co-curricular activities available; it means embracing the social justice programmes at the College and contributing to these. The evidence clearly supports the theory that the students who get the most out of schools such as Penola Catholic College are those who enthusiastically embrace the educational, cultural, sporting and social justice offerings available.

College Board Information Session
An invitation is extended to parents to come along to an information session being held on the evening of Wednesday, 19th February for parents who are interested in the work of the College Board. The information session will provide an opportunity for parents who may be willing to offer their services as Board members in this year or subsequent years, to gain an understanding of the governance of the College. We will have 4 vacancies for parents for the College Board in 2020.

The information session will commence at 7:00pm in the Kerrsland Conference Room at the Broadmeadows campus.
Fundraising for Corryong School Community devastated by recent Bushfires. As a school community we have decided to run an appeal for the Corryong community. The devastation with Corryong is heart breaking to see so much beautiful farming land burnt, the loss of livestock and homes plus the impact it has had on the environment and the town.
I was hoping for the next fortnight (Monday 10 February – Friday 21 February ) each homeroom could do a gold coin donation jar. The funds raised would go towards helping farming families affected by the bushfires to purchase school packs, which have already been pre-ordered by the school. The school has ordered 126 packs at $45each. The money raised would go directly to Corryong College to help pay for the school packs.

In recent times we have been aware of members of our community who have suffered loss, including:
Former staff member, Sue Parkes, who lost her battle with ovarian cancer on Saturday January 25.
Please keep the following staff in your prayers as well after recent surgery – Peter Ratcliffe and Anita Duhig.

Congratulations to Mr Kayhan Halil and his new wife, Lale, who were married over the holiday break. We wish them both many years of happiness together.
Congratulations also to Ms Erin Bonavia who was married last weekend to her fiancé, Matthew on Saturday 1 February, 2020. We wish them both many years of happiness together as well.
I have provided a list of staff new to the College for 2020 including those who are returning to the College after a period of leave.

A key element in helping your child to succeed at the College is communication between you and your child’s teachers. While the student diary is the primary means of communication between teachers and families we also encourage other means of communication. The email addresses of all staff at the College is the first initial of the Christian name followed by their surname. For example Mr Ernie Pisani. Ernie’s email address is episani@penola.vic.edu.au .
We hope that this will further facilitate our ability to work closely with you in catering for the wellbeing and educational needs of your child. Your child’s Homeroom teacher should be the first port of call for any enquiries with the school. Please feel free to make contact with me if you have concerns that are unable to be resolved by your child’s Homeroom teacher, subject teacher, Year Level Coordinators or Head of Campus.

I hope that all students will settle into a productive routine as quickly as possible; I hope they will participate in activities new to them this year; and I look forward to witnessing a genuine spirit of cooperation and partnership between all students and their teachers this year.

In 2019, 97% of students who applied for a course received an offer and 94% of these received one of their top 3 choices. The average ATAR improved from 55.27 to 63.37. The year 12 results were very good, particularly when you compare their predicted scores to their actual scores. The Dux of the College was Jasmine Pajar with an ATAR score of 95.25 and a further 3 students had an ATAR above 90. We had 30 students with ATARs in the 80’s. These results are indicative of all the work that has been done in recent years to improve student achievement, and hopefully this will be a continuing trend. I was particularly pleased with an increase in the number of students who achieved an ATAR in the 80’s, 70’s and 60’s.

Bell Times
A reminder that bell times have remained the same as last year and there is no longer an early leave day. I have listed the bell times below

College Assembly
Our first whole school assembly will take place on Friday 7th February commencing at 8.50am. Year 7 students will be inducted and those 2019 Year 12 students who received an ATAR of 80 or more will be recognised with the presentation of plaques. The Dux of the College, Jasmine Pajar, will be invited to address the students and staff. We also asked students who received a study score of 40 or above and were the highest in their subject to this assembly to be recognised.

Maintenance Projects 2019/2020
Thanks to the Maintenance team for all of their work over the holiday period. The following buildings have been worked on over the break
 Touch up of painting of Touch up of painting of the McCormack Centrethe McCormack Centre
 Installation of new air conditioners in the Glenroy ERCInstallation of new air conditioners in the Glenroy ERC
 New Carpet in the foyer and corridor at GlenroyNew Carpet in the foyer and corridor at Glenroy
 One way decals placed on the internal doors in Glenroy receptionOne way decals placed on the internal doors in Glenroy reception
 Painting of external areas of Tenison Woods, Smyth and Mannes HousPainting of external areas of Tenison Woods, Smyth and Mannes House e buildingsbuildings
 New vinyl laid in Shortis girls toilets and new partitionsNew vinyl laid in Shortis girls toilets and new partitions
 New partitions in boys toilets in Tenison Woods BuildingNew partitions in boys toilets in Tenison Woods Building
 Refurbishment of both canteensRefurbishment of both canteens
 Lots of little maintenance jobs done as well Lots of little maintenance jobs done as well
ICT Upgrades
ICT Upgrades
The ICT team have completed a signif
The ICT team have completed a significant amount of work over the holiday period icant amount of work over the holiday period includingincluding::
 ReRe--imaging computers in laboratoriesimaging computers in laboratories
 Installation of new fibre in server roomsInstallation of new fibre in server rooms
 Preparation of 65 new staff laptopsPreparation of 65 new staff laptops
 Archiving of students who have left the CollegeArchiving of students who have left the College
 Upgrades of software as necessary

Lockdown on the Junior Campus

On Wednesday February 5 at approximately 3.35pm, I was contacted by Victoria Police asking me to place the Junior Campus into lockdown. There had been an unconfirmed report of someone with a firearm walking around Tarana Avenue in Glenroy. At the time we had 18 students, a number of parents and over 40 staff still present on the school grounds.  After extensive investigations by Victoria Police including police presence, canine squad and helicopter they were unable to locate anyone with a firearm and determined it to be a false alarm.  This gave us an opportunity to test our lockdown procedures and I would like to thank staff, students and parents for the way that they followed our procedures. I was pleased with the way that everyone cooperated and responded in what was, for some, a highly anxious time.  I was most impressed with our students.  If this has raised any concerns/anxieties with any participants in the lockdown, particularly students, let us know so that they can be counselled by our Student Services staff.

Given the high number of new members of our community, I thought that this prayer was appropriate to begin the school year

The Journey Begins
As we step into this New Year,
Restore our spirits.
Renew our passion for sharing your wisdom
And nurture our compassion
for those in need of greater support.
Transform us as we seek to transform:
Guide us as we seek to guide;
Open our minds and hearts
as we seek to open minds and hearts
to the Good News of justice and peace.
Help us listen more deeply
To the world and to your Word,
So we can walk with those in our care,
Attentive to the Wisdom that
Calls us all to the Kingdom of God.

Chris Caldow


School Tuition Fees 2020


Student Photographs

A reminder to all parents that you need to notify the College if you do not give permission for your son or daughter’s photograph to be published in newsletters or promotional materials.  We would like to begin to place more photographs and videos on MyPenola and so I take this opportunity to remind you of the student permission form for photographs.  If we have not received your permission form back at the College we have assumed that your consent has been provided.  It is the responsibility of each family to make this decision and notify the College if you decide to exclude your son or daughter from having their photograph published.  In practical terms, this will mean that your son or daughter will need to be excluded from most group shots such as class photographs as these are published in our Year Book each year.


From the Deputy Principal Head of Broadmeadows Campus: Ernie Pisani Vol 1

Dear Parents and students, I wish you all had a safe and restful Christmas break. As we see the new year in, I also wish you a very successful and productive 2020; a year in which the school celebrates its twenty-fifth anniversary. I particularly welcome students who are new to the College and wish them a happy and easy transition …

Read more.


From the Deputy Principal Head of Glenroy Campus: Stuart Harrison Vol 1

Welcome to the 2020 School Year on the Glenroy Campus.  We welcome back our 2020 Year 8s and a special welcome to the newest members of the Penola Community our Year 7s. Year 7 Parent Information and Meet and Greet Night On the 18th of February we will have our Year 7 Parent Information and Meet and Greet night at …

Read more.


From the Deputy Principal Head of Teaching & Learning: John McKay Vol 1

Dear students and families, Welcome to 2020 and an exciting year of learning for 2020.  As the new Deputy Principal for Learning and Teaching, I hope to ensure that all students at Penola Catholic College engage in the rich and meaningful learning programs offered by the College.  As the College celebrates its rich 25-year history, I invite all students to …

Read more.


 VCAL Program

An outstanding achievement by Penola Catholic College’s VCAL program who grew more than 130kg of vegetables over the holidays. This has now been donated to FareShare

"FareShare rescues surplus food and cooks free, nutritious meals for people doing it tough."

This has been the largest harvest ever donated to FareShare by a school!

Laura Elliott
VCAL Coordinator


Proposed Canberra Excursion

This year our Year 11 &12 Legal Studies students will be given the opportunity to take part in a camp to our National’s capital, Canberra. The trip is proposed to take place on the 24th – 26th June. The aim of this trip is for our students to have a better understanding of the role and function of Federal Parliament and Government, the role of the High Court in the interpretation of the Constitution and how our Government and our Court system exhibits the notion of being transparent and accessible to the public. More information will be given to students over the coming weeks. If you would like further information please feel free to contact me.

Soula Argyropoulos
Head of Humanities


Purchasing Student Photos

Photographs may be purchased as follows:

ONLINE PAYMENTSwww.theschoolphotographer.com.au

Online Order Code       Years 9 to 12 : X3060EL42PB
                                       Years 7 to 8 : X3059EL42PG

Late Payments - If paying online after photo day for your class/portraits, online orders are open via our website for you to make payment.  A late fee applies for all orders placed after the bulk issue of School Photos are delivered. 

Phone Payments - Call directly on 9674 9824 - Order over the phone via credit card payments.  (Note – there is a processing fee of $5 for all phone order payments)


Email –  enquiries@theschoolphotographer.com.au  or  Call : 02 9674 9824

Please note students are issued with a current ID card annually and this must be carried at all times – should this be misplaced or lost students must replace the card at their own cost (from $10.00).  

College Canteen

As you may be aware our College canteen has had a makeover!
We will now be accepting cash and EFTPOS as payment options.
Please make note there is a minimum $5 spend for EFTPOS purchases. 


2020 Camps, Sports and Excursion Fund (CSEF)

To submit a CSEF Application in 2020:

If you have applied for the CSEF in a previous year, you do not need to complete an application form in 2020.  Unless there has been a change in your family circumstances the school will apply for the CSEF on your behalf.

You will ONLY need to submit an application form in 2020 if any of the following changes have occurred:

• New student enrolments: Your child has started or changed schools in 2020 or you did not apply at the same school in a previous year.

• Changed family circumstances, such as: a change of custody, change of name, concession card number or new siblings commencing at the school in 2020.

CSEF Flyer : English, Arabic and Vietnamese



CSEF Form Attachment:  



Second Hand Uniform Sales 

Fortnightly Tuesdays, Broadmeadows Campus

8.45am - 10.30am

Term One: Feb 4, Feb 18, Mar 3, Mar 17
Term Two: Apr 14, Apr 28, May 12, May 26, Jun 9, Jun 23
Term Three: Jul 14, Jul 28, Aug 11, Aug 25, Sept 8
Term Four: Oct 6, Oct 20, Nov 10, Nov 24


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


Community News (Adverts/Sponsors)

• Ace Tennis Program

• Upfield Soccer Club

• Hume City Council Classes