Week 10, Term 3 - 18 September 2020

Message From the Principal

As Term 3 has now come to a close, we now find ourselves able to take a break and reflect on the past 6 months of this extraordinary year. We have all learned so much about ourselves, our connections, our strength and our resilience. We have all come to more deeply appreciate the importance of relationships and quality time spent with family and friends.

On Wednesday this week we came together as a Mercy ministry to celebrate the feast day of Our Lady of Mercy. Sister Helen Mary Peters, College Board Chair and representative of the Sisters of Mercy at our Mercy Day Mass spoke of the need for us to reflect on the words of Catherine McAuley, “The simplest and most practical lesson I know…is to resolve to be good today, but better tomorrow. Let us take one day only in hands, at a time, merely making a resolve for tomorrow, thus we may hope to get on taking short, careful steps, not great strides.” At this beautiful Mass we also held the Passing of the Light ceremony, which is a significant Rite of Passage, providing the opportunity for our 2020 student cohort to pass the  light of leadership to the 2021 cohort. While we were not able to have parents join us in person due to COVID-19 restrictions, we recorded this special event and have shared this on our Learning Hub.

Certainly, in such a challenging year we have all found ourselves having to take smaller, more careful steps as we navigate the unknown situation we find ourselves in. As a community, I am consistently proud of the fact we have continued to turn towards each other, supporting our neighbours and reaching out to those in need. This is true community spirit, this is love and mercy and what makes this place so special.

Our Papua New Guinea students are not able to be with us at the moment due to Australian border restrictions, however we recognised the incredible significance of their PNG Independence Day on Wednesday 16 September, sharing quotes from our girls and a special video message from our College Captain Barbara Sigere. We continue to pray for a return of these students to our community as soon as possible.

I would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge our College staff team who have worked incredibly hard to ensure we placed the student experience, growth, wellbeing and support at the centre of our decisions and approaches. The COVID-19 uncertainty remains, yet here at the College, we continue to focus on the importance of routines of learning, coupled with joyful fun, whilst still adhering to the current COVID-19 restrictions.

I also would like to acknowledge all of our students and their ability to be strong, brave and resilient in the face of adversity. The assessment period of the past few weeks has provided them all with the much needed opportunity to check on their understanding and progress along their learning journey. Our Year 12 students have experienced a mock external examination period and I thank them for their tenacity and ability to take this as valuable feedback as they enter the final preparation towards the actual external examinations ahead next term.

As we all now start to look to 2021 with renewed hope and anticipation, I am very pleased to announce that a new marketing campaign for our College will officially launch on Tuesday 6 October via social media and other online platforms, proudly showcasing our College to the wider community. I have worked closely with an extraordinary team of creative professionals from the locally owned business Vetta Productions. It has been sheer joy, sharing the essence of our College with this incredible team in the design of a campaign that is exciting and closely aligned to the Towards 2025 Strategic Plan being officially launched at our College Speech Night. The development of this plan began in 2019 with community consultation and various surveys. In 2020, I have led and facilitated staff focus groups and conducted more specific surveys to ensure the voice of our community is reflected in this plan. I am ever grateful to be able to work with such a dynamic, progressive and energetic College Leadership Team in conjunction with an incredibly supportive and visionary Board of Governance. This process has resulted in a Strategic Plan which speaks to our unique context, honours the past and sets a strong vision and plan of action for our next five years as a community. I look forward to sharing this with you all on Thursday 22 October.

I now encourage all of our staff and students to take the time to enjoy this holiday break, refresh and re-energise for the excitement and joy that Term 4 always brings.


2021 Staffing Update

It is also important that I provide the opportunity to update our community on some staffing matters. Mrs Tracy Nioa, Head of Faculty – Learning Support is taking leave for the remainder of this year and I do sincerely thank Ms Deb Backer who has joined us in a temporary capacity this term in the Learning Support Department. I am pleased to inform our community that Ms Lauren Newman will be carrying out the Acting Head of Faculty – Learning Support role in Term 4.

I am also thrilled to announce to our community that Mr Chris Pacey, our Head of Faculty – Science has been appointed to the newly created role from 2021 of Dean of Academic Operations. Chris brings a wealth of knowledge, experience and passion to this area and will provide invaluable support to Ms Amy Byrnes our Deputy Principal – Academic who will be able to then turn her attention to strategic focus areas, in line with the soon to be launched Towards 2025 Strategic Plan.

May God bless you all and your families.



Amber Hauff

College Principal



Message from the Board Chair

Message from the Board Chair

Board Chair

Sr Helen Mary Peters


In May I indicated that the Board would take the opportunity provided by the pandemic restrictions to give some time to review our policies, processes and committee structures and to look at processes for recruitment for future Board members; and this is indeed what we have been doing over the past three months.

We have reviewed and restructured our Finance, Audit and Risk Management Committee and our Property and Facilities Committee and appointed new members to both committees. These committees are charged with overseeing and providing advice in their respective areas to the Board and hence exercise a critical function in helping the Board Directors to make wise decisions.

Early in the year we established a Recruitment Committee to develop a framework, policies and procedures for the recruitment of new members to both Board and Committees.  We currently have three vacancies on the Board and will be seeking new Board members for appointment in the new year. We are working to develop a pool of potential Board and Committee members to ensure that the Board will have the necessary professional expertise and skills it needs to provide ongoing good governance into the future.

The importance of this endeavour was clearly seen in June when two of our Board Directors, Mr Jon Larrazabal and Mrs Pamela Griffiths, resigned in order to take up new employment opportunities. I want to take this opportunity to thank both Jon and Pam for their contribution to the Board – they have each brought their professional knowledge and expertise to our deliberations and were extraordinarily generous in doing so. Their presence and contribution have been greatly appreciated and we wish them well in all their future endeavours.

The completion of our East Precinct building, and the delight of the students as they enjoy this new facility, has been a great joy to us all, and I am sure has done much to raise morale in this pandemic time. I continue to be amazed by the creativity and resilience of our Leadership Team and staff members in facing the multiple challenges that the pandemic provides.  Let us all continue to keep them in our prayers and to support them in every way we can.


Deputy Principal

Deputy Principal

Cameran Triffett


Buses Update 2021

At St Patrick’s College Townsville we have three separate bus runs for transporting our students to and from the College.

Bus routes are planned around demand and due to seating capacity, places are limited.

To secure a place on the bus, a Bus Confirmation Form 2021 must be completed and the term’s travel must be paid for in advance. To arrange payment please contact the College Bus Coordinator at buses@stpatscollege.qld.edu.au

A 2021 Bus Confirmation must be submitted for all students, including those who are current 2020 bus users.

The form along with specific information regarding bus routes is available on our Website https://www.stpatscollege.qld.edu.au/parents-78nv68/college-bus-service/

Please note that no student will be permitted to travel on College buses without a submitted Bus Confirmation Form.

Casual use of the bus service will depend on availability and must be pre-arranged with the Bus Coordinator.

Alternative payments options can also be discussed with the Bus Coordinator.

To provide the best service to tailor the bus routes and to secure your daughter’s spot, Bus Confirmation Forms are required to be submitted by Friday November 6.


Deputy Principal – Academic

Deputy Principal – Academic

Deputy Principal – Academic

Amy Byrnes



We have come to the end of another term and it is time for our students to enjoy the holidays.  Term 3 has been our first full term in 2020 and our students have experienced a multitude of assessment across their various subjects in the past few weeks.  I encourage each one of our girls to use these holidays to recharge their batteries, take some time for themselves, read a book and spend time with friends and family.  Before we know it, we will be in Term 4 which moves at a rapid rate.

Year 10 and 11 students have just experienced Exam Blocks.  All students in these year levels are to be commended on their attendance during this period and the professional way that they conducted themselves. 

Year 12 students encountered their first taste of Mock Exams in the last two weeks.  This is a valuable time to reflect on the experience and gain feedback before they head into their External Assessment and Common Internal Assessment (CIAs) in Term 4.  Year 12 students and their parents/guardians were emailed the Term 4 attendance schedule for Weeks 1 to 3.  If students or parents have any questions about the first 3 weeks of Term 4, they are encouraged to contact me.

Year 11 Subject Changes

Year 11 students will finish Unit 2 at the end of Term 3, 2020.  Unit 3 content will then begin on Tuesday, 7 October (Week 1, Term 4).  Students wishing to change subjects for Unit 3 and 4 can book a meeting with myself.  Subject changes for Unit 3 and 4 must be finalised by Friday, 16 October (Week 2, Term 4).  Any student that wishes to change subjects, must do so at the beginning of Unit 3, as any student that changes throughout either Unit 3 or Unit 4 will not receive credit for these paired units.

Report Cards

Report Cards will be distributed to all year levels during the holidays.  These report cards will then be used to inform Speech Night Academic Awards.  Student’s receiving Speech Night Academic Awards will be announced at our first assembly in Term 4 on Wednesday, 7 October.  Further information regarding Speech Night and Academic Award recipients will be distributed at this assembly. 

Director of Mission

Director of Mission

Director of Mission

Athena Costopoulos


Mercy Day

On Monday 24th September 1827, Catherine McAuley opened her House at number 64 Baggot Street Dublin.  Inspired by Our Lady of Mercy, she named it ‘The House of Mercy’.  Catherine provided education, accommodation and meals for the poor as well as visited the sick and dying.  She put out the call for help and the response was remarkable with Baggot Street becoming the home for a small group of dedicated young women, eager to share in Catherine’s work.

This year we celebrated Mercy Day with our first Mass in our new auditorium. Fr Siby led the celebration of Our Lady of Mercy’s Feast Day and we learnt about the impact of Catherine McAuley’s dream to help the poor, the homeless, the sick and the uneducated. Sr Helen Mary once again shared an inspiring reflection that challenged us to continue to be Catherine McAuley’s legacy of Mercy as shining lamps, giving light to all around us. We also celebrated an important milestone for our senior students as this year’s leaders passed their light to the Year 11 students.

Sr Catherine Cuddihy once again gifted the college with 600 handmade paper Mercy roses. The Catherine McAuley rose symbolises Catherine’s graciousness in being a bearer of God’s mercy to those around her.  The clusters represent the groups of Sisters around the world, and the women and men of mercy who work with the Sisters in bringing God’s mercy to others.

In the Mercy Works part of our day, Pastoral Care classes learnt about social justice issues such as: homelessness, refugees, care for our common home, and the Mercy story. Students and teachers worked through the issues by learning, doing and reflecting.

The afternoon was dedicated to raising money for the Year 12 charity, Mercy Works, a charity dedicated to improving the lives of vulnerable people. Year 11 and 12 Mercy Girls In Action led lunchtime activities that included a photo booth, basketball shootout and origami flower making.

The highlight of the afternoon was Patty’s Got Talent. With the support of the Music Department and Ms Andrews, MCs Jorja and Tamarra had an afternoon packed with entertainment, Way Back Wednesday fashion parade and games for the whole College. The Staff Band made a surprise appearance that had everyone on their feet.



May you meet mercy each day:
in the light of your own heart,
at the hands of your loved ones,
in the eyes of the stranger.
And if by chance you do not at first meet it,
then search your heart for it,
listen patiently for word of it,
and it will tap you on the shoulder,
a quiet surprise,
a small gesture
the tender look
given and received
in the encounters of your day
Mary Wickham rsm (2002)

Director of Boarding

Director of Boarding

Director of Boarding

Megan Christie


I am very excited to announce that we now have our own Boarding Facebook Group! This group is intended for the current students and guardians of our boarding community. This group will enable you to keep up-to-date with boarding life, including activities and events taking place in Boarding at the College. Please note that only Admin has permission to post to this group.  Please be advised that you will be required to answer three security questions. The link to this page has been emailed to families.

Please review the rules of joining this group:

  1. Be Kind and Courteous. We’re all in this together to create a welcoming environment. Let us treat everyone with respect.
  2. No Hate Speech or Bullying. Make sure everyone feels safe. Bullying of any kind is not allowed and degrading comments will not be tolerated.

We look forward to sharing your daughter’s home-away-from home.


Our Boarders’ Council has met every fortnight in Week B. The Boarders’ Council is made up of representatives from each Year level.  The Year Level Representatives meet with their Year level regularly to enable students to raise any concerns, suggestions and feedback that students may have. Year Level Representatives then take these suggestions to the Boarders’ Council meeting chaired by the Boarding Captains. I would like to acknowledge the Year Level Representatives for their contribution this term.

Year 12: Anastacia Barton and Zieann Baragud

Year 11: Marama McCarthy, Whitney Nai and Annie Nona

Year 10: Flora Nona and Xenia Peinkinna

Year 9: Esha Dalwood, Katelyn Cairns, Florina Hankin

Year 8: Jusaray Nona and Jmelliah Barrett

Congratulations to our Boarders of the Week:

Norma Owens

Ralma Edwards

Relisha Kris






Director of Students

Director of Students

Maria Franettovich



It has been another full term of learning and engagement in a wide variety of activities.  We have been fortunate to be at school for face to face learning this term and able to provide some activities and events for your daughters, to allow them to connect with others.   We have all learnt how to be adaptable to the new realities of life, with social distancing, increase in personal hygiene practices and having to adhere to the COVID restrictions imposed on schools.

Last Friday night the Year 12 students attended their Combined Pastoral Evening, although the evening was a different format to previous years to meet COVID restrictions. The girls had a most enjoyable night dressing up in their $5 formal outfits and engaging in a fun night of trivia.  Congratulations to our joint winning team. 

Our Head of Year 12, Ms Tenille Hambly has been working with Year 12 students and their families to ensure that the Year 12 Formal meets COVID restrictions and that the girls do not miss out on this important rite of passage and that it is a very special evening for our students. 

Upcoming Events

Wednesday October 7 –  First Day Term 4

Peer Power

On Wednesday 7 October 2020, Year 11 students will be taking part in a Peer Power – Leading a Legacy Seminar.

Leading a Legacy highlights the leadership potential of every individual. This seminar builds on the theory of Social Capital by Robert Putnam (Bowling Alone, 2000), enabling the leadership group to identify the effective and ineffective ways in which they lead. It examines how we place certain values on different social groups within the College community and how to bridge these divides. The workshop provides many opportunities to practice skills that add value to the people we do know, and also to effectively connect with those we don’t know.  Year 11 parents/guardians have been sent an email with additional information regarding this seminar.

Finally, the holidays will give us all a chance to rest and refresh and have some time to enjoy the beautiful North Queensland weather.  Take care and have an enjoyable break and I look forward to seeing everyone back for a busy Term 4.



HPE & Sport

HPE & Sport

Head of Faculty – Health & Physical Education & Sport

Ben Williams 


Club Rugby Union

Congratulations to our St Patrick’s College Junior Rugby Union team, playing for the North Ward Sand Crabs, for taking out the grand final win on Saturday to be named this year’s TDRU Premiers. The girls faced off against Charters Towers Bulls with an outstanding score of 56-7.  Flora Nona (Captain), Jowinah Mipari, Ethel Babia, Tabie Sagigi and Rebecca David played an exceptionally strong game, with Jowinah also taking out best U16 Forward. A mention must also go to Jermia Ahmat-Nona for her dedication throughout the season.


Club Netball

On Saturday afternoon our junior netball teams went head-to-head in the season finals. With an exceptionally close score of 13-12 the girls played with passion and determination. Congratulations on a spectacular season. Our Senior Netball Team have shown enormous spirit throughout the season playing all the way to the semi-finals earlier this week. We are immensely proud of all of you. A special thank you to Ms Belinda Semola, Ms Angela Burrows and the Hall Family for their ongoing coaching support throughout the season.

English & Languages

English & Languages

Head of Faculty – English

Amy Plumridge



Anime Club Drawing Competition

During Term 3, the Anime Club has been running a competition for its members to draw their favourite anime character or create their own original anime character. It would be an understatement to say that the students in Anime Club love anime! The students were able to submit their entry as a hand drawn artwork or picture, or drawn on a computer.

It was wonderful to see the creative talents of many students. The pictures were judged in a Senior section and Junior section. The winners received a prize pack for their efforts. Thank you to all the students who participated, as it was very hard to choose a winner. All the entries will be displayed in the Japanese room.


Senior section: Erin Blackman (Year 12)

Junior section: Zariah Lyne (Year 8)

Year 9 Healthy lunchboxes (Obento)

This Term Year 9 have been learning about “Healthy Food” in Japanese culture. A popular type of healthy meal is to make an obento box. An obento box is a single-portion take-out or home-packed meal. One of the ways that parents try to make their children’s obento boxes appealing is to make a character or picture with contrasting colours and use healthy food, such as rice, vegetables, and fruit.

Year 9 students spent an afternoon in the hospitality room creating some healthy obento boxes and the experience was enjoyed by all.

The Arts

The Arts

Head of Department – Dramatic Arts & Performance

Alyssa Kelly


Clowning Around in Year 7

Year 7 students have been working hard on their slapstick skills, creating clowning performances for their assessment this term. They have been enjoying the new drama studio and dressing room, putting on makeup and costumes to complete their character look. They were very excited to get ready and their performances were affected by this enthusiasm. Special thanks to Ms Maguire and Ms Hudson for their efforts with the Year 7 students and helping to make it a success.





Head of Department – Visual Arts & Exhibitions 

Harriet Geater-Johnson



Visit to NQ Ceramics

A big thank you to the Percival Tucker Regional Gallery for allowing our 11 Visual Arts in Practice class to visit the NQ Ceramics Award. The work was very inspiring for the current Narrative Vessel unit and the girls were lucky enough to see work from former Head of Department – Visual Art, Ms Ebony Russel on show.

Independent Education Union of QLD and NT student art show ‘Perfect Places.’

Huge congratulations to Chloe Turner who received a Highly Commended award at the Independent Education Union of QLD and NT student art show ‘Perfect Places.’ Chloe, Ruby Mitchell and Ruby Cotterall all had their work selected for this show and their Fauvist inspired paintings of the Townsville region were really strong, well done girls!

‘In Residence’ – Education QLD and QAGOMA

Congratulations to Jamie Mohr, one of only twenty students selected from the whole of QLD to be a part of ‘In Residence’ through Education QLD and QAGOMA. In order to apply Jamie had to produce a visual and written response to the work ‘Coming to Terms, Bride I’ by Abdul Abdullah. A challenging work that explores the artist’s challenges as a Muslim-Australian. In response Jamie produced a work that celebrated cultural diversity at St Patrick’s College. Producing a drawing which was then digitally altered with a lino print overlay. Jamie’s written response was very sophisticated. She will now take part in online workshops with gallery staff and professional artists.

Jamie’s response:

In his artwork, Abdullah addresses the differences in cultural perception within Australia, drawing inspiration from the conflicting sides of his heritage. His deeply personal art responds to many cultural and social issues surrounding Australian Muslims. This artwork’s focal point is the confronting image of the figure’s eyes, which connect directly with the audience, and challenge the treatment of Muslims in Australia. The hijab signifies the negative perceptions projected onto Muslims, with the bride embodying themes of isolation and injustice. However, the idea of the wedding represents optimism for the future. My work is a celebration of diversity. The concept of a mask has been appropriated, through the digital overlay of a lino print veiling the charcoal drawing. This represents the cultural lens through which my Torres Strait Islander sisters at school perceive Queensland, and signifies a conceptual layering of traditions. The motifs are inspired by Torres Strait imagery, and represent the ocean’s ebb and flow. This symbolises the challenge of existing in two worlds. The chaotic nature of the rubbish suggests that Indigenous youth are inundated by a sea of social, cultural, and environmental inequities. However, the figure’s eyes were left unobstructed to symbolise a view of a hopeful future.

Faces from our Community

Year 10 have wowed us with their project ‘Faces from our Community,’ and have been producing very strong portraits of friends, teachers and the College community. We hope to have these works on display in Term 4!

Head of Department – Music & Performance

Johnathon Goulter


The end of Term 3 has been a fantastic time for the music department. We have seen a surge of musical skill emerge in a range of year groups. Year 7 have been mashing up traditional African American, Australian Aboriginal and folk songs in class. The sound of Year 8 has the 7 Nation Army Anthem that many have chosen to perform for their band task. Year 9 have presented a range of songs from musical, television shows, films, and videos games. Year 10 have shown their skill in accompanying themselves in a variety of methods. Year 11 and 12 have both been preparing for exam and research tasks exploring different musical identities and narratives. All in all it has been a great term with students back to make music face to face. Music ensembles have had an equally busy term with preparing for parents and Year 5 students in the Principal’ Welcome Tours and recording their current ensemble repertoire for parents viewing at home – keep an eye out on the music page on the Learning Hub to view these recordings. Lastly, Patty’s Got Talent has showcased six amazing acts with Kate Pullinger-O’Brien winning with an amazing self-written fast rap piece.  

Wishing you all a restful break and looking forward to making music again next term.

John Goulter – Head of Music