A Message from the Principal

“I am flawed, I am a good and gifted person, I am called to offer my gifts” – Pope Francis

At Galen Catholic College we are committed to a pathway of continuous improvement.

For the ever-growing number of students in our care, this means providing an ever-improving range of learning opportunities across what is an impressively broad curriculum and co-curriculum. Already this year, our Year 12 students have all spent 3 days of reflection, prayer and clarifying their goals for 2015 and beyond.

This year, we have added to that experience with our inaugural Year 11 retreats, part of a Re-Connect program designed to help focus the hearts and minds of our senior students as they commence their final two years of secondary school. The Year 11s have all spent two days at Harrietville as the introduction to this program.

Meanwhile, half of our Year 9 students have spent 3 days at Mount Buffalo on this year’s first Year 9 Adventure Camp, learning basic bush skills of caving, hiking, camping, abseiling and canoeing. The other half of Year 9 will have their Adventure Camp in fourth term. In addition, 9/1 and 9/2 have participated in their overnight Discovery walks.

For many years, Galen has had an extraordinary Performing Arts program which features a major annual musical production for the whole school, and a junior musical production showcasing the talents of our younger students. In mid-February, our major production cast and production band spent 2 days at the Feathertop Chalet on the production camp as part of their preparations.

In the first six weeks of 2015, we have also celebrated the VCE High Achievers from 2014, the AGM of the Friends of Galen Music, hosted porters from the Kokoda Trail, hosted the ANZAC Centenary Tour, completed the annual Swimming Sports, held an Open Afternoon for the parents of the new Year 7 students, completed the School Photos, had our first Soup Van trip to help Melbourne homeless, held an amazing Trivia Night in support of our upcoming student and staff trips to Timor L’Este, welcomed authors Emile Zoe Baker for the Year 8 students and Scott Gardner for the Year 9s, held several Outdoor Education trips for Years 10, 11 and 12, marked Ash Wednesday with school-wide liturgies and sent a team to the Upper Hume Swimming Carnival.

As a staff dedicated to our own professional improvement, we look towards the future with confidence and careful strategic planning. Over 2015 and 2016, we will conduct a complete review of our curriculum and continue our professional learning and action research into the range of most appropriate learning styles for our students as they prepare to face their own futures. These ongoing learnings from the two major areas of curriculum structure and learning / teaching approaches will in turn inform the finer details of our long-term Master Plan, launched last year. We anticipate that Stage 1 of this Master Plan will commence late this year.

We already have a number of small action research programs under way designed to improve the learning opportunities and outcomes for our students. As a staff, we aim to be living examples of “life-long learners”, encouraging and inspiring the young people in our care to live full lives, make the most of their opportunities and to be the best they can be.

Bernard Neal,
Principal

Proud to be Galen