Term 2 – Empowering Students and Community – Jennifer Oaten

the Winter Appeal and Outreach Mass at Santa Maria College.

As we wrap up another incredible term at Santa Maria College, I am filled with pride and gratitude for the achievements and growth I have witnessed in our students. Term 2 has provided many opportunities to empower our students, foster innovation, and live our Mercy values.

Some highlights under our strategic pillars include:

1. Faith

Our Winter Appeal and Outreach Mass were powerful demonstrations of our community’s compassion and generosity. The sight of red bags filled with donations near the altar during our Mass was a moving reminder of our mission to serve those in need.

We celebrated Sister Breda’s 60th Jubilee as a Sister of Mercy with a communal lunch, honouring her dedication to service both within our College and the wider community.

Our Year 5 students impressed us all with their creative interpretations of the Holy Spirit, demonstrating a deep understanding of their faith and how it guides them in their daily lives.

Our commitment to reconciliation was evident in our Sorry Day activities, with students signing the College Sorry Book and engaging in activities to deepen their understanding of Aboriginal history and culture.

We also held Reflection Days for our Years 7, 8, and 11 students, facilitated by Dave Jorna from Live Your Code. These days provided a mix of engaging activities and opportunities for spiritual reflection, allowing our students to deepen their understanding of themselves, their peers, and their faith. The positive feedback highlighted the value of these experiences in nurturing spiritual growth and connection to our Mercy values.

These faith-based activities and reflections continue to strengthen our Catholic identity and provide meaningful opportunities for our community to live out our faith.

Year 8 woodwork students

2. Learning For Life

In Santa’s Workshop, our Year 8 students explored their creativity and practical skills, designing and creating unique boxes and jewellery trees while learning valuable woodworking techniques.

The launch of the ASX Sharemarket Game for Years 10-12 students is equipping our girls with essential knowledge about investing and financial decision-making.

Our Interhouse Public Speaking competition showcased our students’ eloquence, critical thinking, and courage across all year levels.

The Year 10 Outdoor Education students pushed their boundaries and built confidence through their Recreational Skipper’s Ticket training, embodying our value of excellence.

Our IGSSA Cross Country team demonstrated incredible dedication and teamwork throughout the season, with impressive results, including third-place finishes for our Year 7 and Year 9 groups.

The Year 6 camp at Kerem Adventure Camp was amazing. It was wonderful to see our students develop resilience, foster new friendships, and enthusiastically approach physical challenges.

Students at the Women in Business Mother's Day Market with handmade products.

3. Social Innovation

The Blackwall Reach revegetation project saw our Eco Sisters and Biology students plant 1,400 Banksia seedlings and conduct meticulous data analysis, exemplifying our mission to educate young women who will create positive change in our world.

The Women in Business Mother’s Day Market was a testament to the entrepreneurial spirit and creativity of our students. Over 30 stalls showcased a wide range of handmade products, with some students incorporating charitable giving into their business models.

Twelve of our Year 12 students and three staff members returned from our annual service immersion trip to the RAWA School in Punmu. This ongoing partnership offered our students a life-changing experience, deepening their understanding of their own privileges and strengthening their connection to Indigenous culture. The students have come back with profound insights and stories that will undoubtedly influence their perspectives on social justice and cultural awareness.

These initiatives demonstrate our commitment to fostering social awareness, environmental stewardship, and cultural understanding among our students, preparing them to be agents of positive change in our world.

Parent participating in the Diversity Parent Voice

4. Community Activation

This term, we have seen wonderful examples of community engagement and activation:

We held our first ‘Parent Voice’ workshop, providing a platform for parents to share their perspectives and contribute to our Diversity and Inclusion Strategy. This initiative underscores our commitment to actively seeking and considering parent voices in our decision-making processes. The workshop allowed us to share our work, explain our rationale, and gather valuable input from parents with lived experiences of diversity.

We held our annual Year 12 Mother-Daughter Breakfast at the Esplanade Hotel in Fremantle, a cherished tradition that brought together 321 guests. The event featured an inspiring speech by alumna Cassie Silver (Class of 2006), a touching musical performance by our Year 12 students, and an address from our Head Girl, Isabella Morrison. A highlight was the exchange of personal letters from the mothers to their daughters.

Our Men and Women of Santa functions were highlights, featuring inspiring parents Adam Voges and Olympian Kym Nadin. These events brought our community together, fostering connection and sharing valuable life lessons that align with our College values.

Students using the heated pool

5. Financial Sustainability

This term has seen significant progress in our commitment to financial sustainability and facility improvements:

We commissioned new solar panels, already yielding noticeable power savings and aligning with our environmental stewardship goals.

The HASS department returned to their newly refurbished offices, enhancing our staff’s working environment.

We completed the final phase of our pool upgrade, including new tiling and a pool cover, following the heating system upgrade in Term 1. These improvements will benefit our swimming programs and increase energy efficiency.

These projects demonstrate our ongoing commitment to strategic investments in infrastructure and sustainable practices, ensuring we continue to provide excellent facilities for our students while supporting those in need.

As we look forward to Term 3, I am excited about the continued growth and achievements that lie ahead. Our students continue to inspire me with their enthusiasm for learning, their commitment to personal growth, and their desire to make a difference in our community and beyond.

Thank you to our dedicated staff, supportive families, and, of course, our wonderful students for making Santa Maria a place where young women are truly empowered to create social change

the Winter Appeal and Outreach Mass at Santa Maria College.

Term 2 – Empowering Students and Community – Jennifer Oaten

As we conclude another remarkable term at Santa Maria College, we celebrate the myriad achievements and growth of our students. Term 2 was filled with empowering opportunities, from faith-based activities and learning innovations to social awareness projects and community engagements, embodying our Mercy values and commitment to excellence.

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