First-day nerves all round at schools

More than 43,000 Victorian prep schoolers will nervously walk through the school gates for the first time today as almost 540,000 students return to government schools.

The Herald-Sun reports that another 180,000 are heading back to Catholic schools, including 14,000 first-timers, and about 115,000 will start at the state's independent schools.

Meanwhile in the Archdiocese of Brisbane, over 56,000 students started the 2006 school year last week across Brisbane Catholic Education's 132 schools.

With an increase of over 2000 student enrolments, the opening of 12 new preschool facilities, the expansion of existing schools and a new college on the agenda, 2006 is set to be a busy and exciting year for our schools.

Executive Director, David Hutton said it was pleasing to see increased interest in Catholic education in Queensland.

"I am excited about the year ahead which promises to be a challenging and rewarding one with more schools in the Catholic school system and of course more students."

In western Sydney, the Bishop of Parramatta, Bishop Kevin Manning, has appointed Mr Greg Whitby to the position of Executive Director of the Catholic Education Office, Diocese of Parramatta. Mr Whitby comes to Parramatta from the Diocese of Wollongong where he has been the Director of Schools since 1999.

In welcoming Mr Whitby to his new role, Bishop Manning said he was pleased with the result of the wide consultation to appoint the new Executive Director.

"I have appointed a man with good solid experience in education management, and especially in religious education, which must be the primary focus of our Catholic education system," the Bishop said.

And the Archbishop of Sydney, Cardinal George Pell, has appointed Anthony Cleary as director of Religious Education and Evangelisation in the Catholic Education Office.

Mr Cleary, currently the director of the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (CCD) in the archdiocese of Sydney, will take up this new position on 24 April.

The focus of the new position will be to work with schools on the implementation of the Religious Education curriculum K - 12 and on the To Know Worship and Love textbook series.

The director will also work to develop and further strengthen Catholic evangelisation that calls to a life-long discipleship of Christ, which is fostered by personal witness within communities of Faith and service.

First-day nerves all round at schools (Herald-Sun 31/1/06)
A New School Year Begins (Catholic Education, Archdiocese of Brisbane 24/1/06)
Bishop appoints new Executive Director of Catholic Education Office, Diocese of Parramatta (Diocese of Parramatta 30/1/06)
New RE appointment for Catholic Education Office (Catholic Weekly 27/1/07)

Heat's on as school fires up (Herald-Sun 30/1/06)
Targets Raise the Bar for Catholic Student Performance (CEO Sydney 24/1/06)
Catholic Schools to Teach About Media Use (Zenit 25/1/06)

31 Jan 2006