Volume 1 - 07 Feb 2020



Dear Parents, Carers and Friends of Bethany,

Welcome to our 2020 academic year. A special welcome parents of Year 7 students and others who are new from Years 8 – 11.

Sydney Catholic Schools’ theme for 2020 is “Young man, I say to you, arise” (Luke 7:14). The Action is “Wake up, leave your mark on life.” There is much to this theme that we can unpack with our girls. The Bethany values inspire in girls a learning framework where if they become self directed, engaged, creative, critical and collaborative learners, they are indeed well versed to leave their mark in life. Already after the devastation of the bushfires, students have come forward to offer ideas of ways to support families affected by the bushfires and to that end, a student led dance party will be held next Friday in our Hall with an entry fee with all proceeds going to St Vincent de Paul appeal for bushfires.

On a personal level, I ask parents to discuss this theme and action with your daughters in terms of leaving their mark by working to their goals and maximising effort for their personal best. A new year is refreshing and a chance for new beginnings as your daughter learns the styles of new teachers, new subjects and greater expectations. Past misdemeanours are forgotten and hopefully a mindset of “I’ve got this” can be developed where ownership of learning is in the hands of each girl. This was discussed at Assembly last week and I look forward to witnessing each girl leaving their mark as the 2020 academic year continues.

Last week we welcomed 192 Year 7 students to the Bethany Community and approximately 17 new students across Years 8 – 11. All students have settled in well, forming new relationships and enjoying the welcoming vibe of our College. We also welcome the following staff to Bethany:


and Mrs Jennifer Simonetta – Teacher Librarian


High Achievers Assembly

On the back of our outstanding 2019 HSC Results we welcome back on Wednesday our High Achievers. These are students who came first across their courses, were distinguished achievers, gaining a Band 6 in a subject and students who scored an ATAR above 90. In total, over 70 students will be joining us. This is often an inspirational assembly where our current students can learn from these girls. A Q&A session will be held with our High Achievers speaking directly to Year 11 and 12 following the assembly.


Parents & Friends Meeting

Our first P&F Meeting of the year will be held on Monday at 7pm. For this meeting, we will gather in the College Hall due to the bathroom renovations which block easy access to our Library. For all parents new to the College, this meeting is a time to gain more information about the College and meet other parents in a relaxing atmosphere. The meeting will go no longer than 1 hour. I ask you to make this time in support of your daughter.


Student Leave

Each year, I have several requests for students to take leave. Please be advised that it is in the best interests of your daughter’s education, for her to be at school every day. One of the greatest measures of student success is attendance. Please do not plan travel outside of school holidays. If there are pressing reasons to miss more than 10 days, an application for leave must be made with me well in advance of departure.



Robyn Rodwell

College Principal

From the Assistant Principal

Welcome Back

A warm welcome to new and returning students for 2020. Many thanks to the vast majority of families who have ensured that the girls have returned wearing their summer uniform with pride. The way in which the girls wear their uniform speaks volumes about the pride they have in our Bethany community, the pride they have in their families and themselves. It sets a solid foundation for the year ahead, for if  we take care of the little things the bigger things often have a way of taking care of themselves. A detailed epxalanantion of our unfiorm policy can be found on page19 of the 2020 Student Planner. 


Before and After School Pick Up

A reminder to  parents dropping their daughters  off before school that all students should be dropped off in Waratah Street. As a matter of courtesy, parents and carers are reminded NOT to park in the Nursing home,  parish or primary school carparks for drop off or pick up. Please be mindful of the number of students entering and exiting the College at the beginning and end of the school day. Parents are further reminded that  dropping off or picking up in the surrounding streets needs to be done following the local road rules.If you are picking your up and are stopping and or waiting in marked ‘No Stopping or No Parking Areas’ council have indicated that they will be fining offenders. 



Supervision at the College commences at 8.20am each morning, at this time the buildings will be open and the girls are able to access their lockers and organise themselves for the day ahead. The warning bell  rings at 8:35am, it is expected that all students will be on site by this time and be ready for Homeroom, the official start of the school day at 8.40am. The school day concludes at 2:57pm with supervision for the loading of school specials departing from both Croydon Rd and Forest Rd. 



From time to time you may need to communicate with the College regarding your daughters academic or pastoral needs. We encourage you to contact the College and welcome the opportunity to work collaboratively with you to ensure the best outcomes for your daughter. If the issue is related to a particular subject the most appropriate person to speak to is the subject teacher, your daughter can assist by providing you with her teachers name. If the issue continues we encourage you to make contact with the Teaching and Learning Coordinator for that particular subject. Please find below a list of our Teaching and Learning Coordinators and teachers in charge of subjects for your reference. 


Leader of Learning  Mr Gregg Conroy 

Leader of Religious Education and Mission Mrs Diane Kennaugh

Leader of Teaching Mr Dorian Kipriotis

English Ms Madeline Walsh 

Mathematics Ms Amanda Brooker  

Science Mrs Michael Peck 

HSIE Mrs Kelly Smit 

TAS Mrs Sarah Rowland

PDHPE Mrs Michelle Barass

Performing Arts Mrs Clare Moroney

Visual Arts Mr Simon McLean

VET Coordinator  Mrs Gabreille Killorn 

Languages Mr Marco Gianni 

Learning Support Coordinator Mrs Anna Charas 

Teacher/Librarian Mrs Damienne Forrester / Mrs Jennifier Simonetta


If the matter is of a pastoral nature please contact your daughters Homeroom teacher, the relevant year coordinator as listed below or Mrs Matthews our Leader of Wellbeing. 

Year 12 Mr Steve Donlan 

Year 11 Ms Sylvia Eldahaby

Year 10 Mrs Melanie Bullock 

Year 9 Mrs Theresa Chisari

Year 8 Mrs Katrine Barnes 

Year 7 Mrs Connie Pkis 


Additional staff contacts 

Careers Advisor Mr Steve Donlan

Student Leadership Coordinator Mrs Rachael Colreavy

Youth Ministry Coordinator Mr Sebastian Laguzza 

Representative Sports Coordinator Mrs Lauren Feeney 

Recreational Sports Coordinator Mrs Nora Straker


Parent contact during the school day 

Should parents need to pick up their child  or make contact during the school day we ask that you make contact with the school beforehand so that the College can attempt to ensure that your daughter is ready. A note on the morning of the day she is being picked up is always best and is school policy. Should an unexpected circumstance arise during the school day, we ask you to make contact through the College Office and we will ensure that your daughter receives any important communication. Please do not message your daughter on her phone or laptop at any time during the school day. 

Students have been informed that they are NOT TO USE THEIR MOBILE PHONES to contact parents at any time. If students are sick or feel unwell they are to report to Student Services where the College will follow normal procedures and make the necessary calls home at that point. It would be greatly appreciated if  parents and carers could please remind their children of this process and assist us in this endeavour.



Finally, I wish to alert you to a new process regarding detentions for 2020. All detentions for 2020 will be scheduled for Tuesday afternoon from 3pm-4pm. Students who fail to attend their scheduled detention will be required to attend detention on the Friday of that week. This detention will be 1 ½ hours in duration and will run from 3pm – 4.30pm each Friday afternoon.  


Public Transport 

Parents are asked to ensure that their daughters have their Opal card on them at all times and remember to tap on and tap off at the commencement and conclusion of each journey. As a community we expect that the girls will behave in a manner that is aligned with the Bethany values and will always make way for members of the public. Supervision extends to the loading of school specials. Girls waiting for public buses are reminded of the importance of doing so safely. 


I look forward to your support throughout 2020 as we work together in the interest of your daughter.  


Jodie Hughes

Assistant Principal

What’s Happening in Religious Education

Opening School Mass

Our Eucharistic celebration for our new school year was held on Tuesday and was celebrated by Fr Janusz Bieniek from St Michael’s at Hurstville.  It is a very fitting way to begin the year and allowed all of us to offer up to God, all that we hope for this year. Students were reminded that each school year is a new beginning and coming together as a community to celebrate the Eucharist is a great reminder that we are here to support one another, but more importantly, that God is at the centre of all that we do.  At each of our masses, the singing is getting better and better and as St Augustine said, “When we sing, we pray twice” and we are certainly praying many times over!



Youth Masses

All of our students have an opportunity to participate in the St Michael’s Parish Youth Mass on the second Sunday of every month (excluding school holidays).  The girls are invited to take on the roles of lectors, Eucharistic ministers, collections, singing and playing the music. In the week prior to the mass, students are asked to nominate themselves for a role that they would like to undertake during the mass and we actively encourage their full participation.  All students who attend the mass will now be awarded House Points that will contribute the overall points tally for the House Cup at the end of the year. Students who attend the mass will receive 5 points and students who take on an active role within the mass will be awarded 10 points. We hope to see many families attending the masse with their daughters. The dates for the Youth Masses this year are listed below:


Sunday 9 February

Sunday 8 March

Sunday 10 May

Sunday 14 June

Sunday 9 August

Sunday 13 September

Sunday 8 November

Sunday 13 December


Spirituality Days and Retreats

Throughout the year, our students will be attending spirituality days and retreats. I ask you to please take note of the following dates that your daughters will be attending these events:


Year 12 Retreat: Wednesday 27 – Friday 29 May

Year 11 Retreat: Wednesday 12 – Friday 14 August

Year 10 Spirituality Day: Wednesday 11 March

Year 9 Spirituality Day: Wednesday 19 April

Year 8 Spirituality Day: Wednesday 2 September

Year 7 Spirituality Day: Wednesday 4 November


Further information will be sent out regarding these events closer to the date.


Social Justice Initiatives

We are looking to offer as many social justice initiatives as we can so that students have an opportunity to participate in outreach.  In term 4 last year, we partnered with St Vincent de Paul and began making sandwiches that would be distributed through the Night Patrol Bus to those in Sydney who need a meal.  We will be continuing this again this year and we encourage your daughters to look for the notices on Compass that will enable them to sign up to volunteer to make the sandwiches.  This takes place once a month on a Tuesday afternoon after school and is fully supervised by the staff. Our first sandwich-making event for this year will be on Tuesday 11 February.  

Shrove Tuesday on 25 February will be the official launch of our Caritas Appeal for Lent. On this day, we will be making and selling pancakes for breakfast.  Our senior students will be invited to volunteer to assist with the selling of the pancakes. More information about this event will be forthcoming in future newsletters.

This is only a small taste of the events and plans that we have for Religious Education and Mission for the College this year and I hope that we will have many students (and parents) participating in these events when they occur.  We are looking forward to seeing the fruition of these plans as the year unfolds.



Diane Kennaugh

Leader of Religious Education and Mission

From the Leader of Wellbeing

Student medical and health information 2020                 

A reminder that parents/guardians have a responsibility to advise the school of their child’s medical and health information and the particular requirements for the management of their child’s medical needs. Medical and health information must be updated annually at the commencement of every school year .If your child has a medical condition that requires regular medication or is on a medical plan, please provide an updated Action Plan from your Medical Practitioner. It would be greatly appreciated if these Action Plans can be given to the school office by 14 February.






If a student is absent from school, parents/guardians have a legal requirement to explain their child’s absence

There are several ways that a parent/guardian can explain their daughter’s absence at Bethany.

  1. Ring the College the morning of your daughter’s absence and explain the reason for her absence.
  2. Explain your daughter’s absence on Compass
  3. Hand in a written note, signed by a parent explaining the reason for the absence.

If parents have not explained their child’s absence by 10.30am on the morning of the absence, parents/guardians will receive a Compass notification. Parents click on the link provided in the Compass notification and follow the prompts to explain their daughter’s absence. Parents are reminded that this link expires in 72 hours.  

If parents have not explained their child’s absence within 7 days, you will receive an email requiring them to provide a reason for their child’s absence.


“Making Friends and staying in touch with old classmates” Michael Grose.

Making Grose, the founder of Parenting Ideas, is one of Australia’s leading parenting educators. He has several great tips for parents to help their child adjust socially at the start of the school year. Here are some of the tips:.



  • Encourage your child to be open to new friendships
  • Encourage healthy relationships
  • Encourage inclusiveness
  • Stay in touch with former classmates and school friends
  • Provide social scripts
  • Remind your child that forming new friendships can take time






Mary Matthews

Leader of Wellbeing

From the Leader of Pedagogy

Welcome to another exciting school year full of learning at Bethany College. Here at Bethany we offer a range of additional services to help support all the girls in their learning journey. Students are able to access these services for free at any time during the school year.


After School Tutoring Program

The after school tutoring program is a great opportunity for students to work with external tutors (many of whom are ex students) on any homework or assessment tasks. The program   commences this week in the school Library with the tutors available from 3:15 to 4:30 every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. Any change to the schedule will be communicated to students weekly via Compass.. 

All students are reminded that they must sign their name upon arrival and exit.



Lifesavers is an opportunity for you to receive assistance with homework or upcoming assessment tasks. Students can check in with Mrs Straker at lunch time every Wednesday in MC210 (opposite the Library). Students of all year groups are permitted to join.


Dorian Kipriotis

Leader of Teaching

Bethany College Open Day

Welcome to 2020 – A Message from the Director

First Day – Year 7

On Thursday 30th January the Year 7 “Flames” commenced their high school journey at Bethany College with great confidence and maturity. They were enthusiastically welcomed by the College Leadership Team, the Year 10 Big Sisters, the Year 12 leaders and their Year Coordinator. The new Year 7 students spent Thursday and Friday completing a transition program where they learnt about the nuts and bolts of Bethany and formed relationships through a range of icebreaker activities. From all accounts, the new Year 7 cohort transitioned smoothly and embraced their first week at the College with great enthusiasm.

On Wednesday 5th February, the parents of Year 7 students were officially welcomed to the College in the evening and had the opportunity to meet their daughter’s homeroom teachers. 

I would like to congratulate the Year 7 Flames for embracing their new routine and surroundings with maturity and resilience and would like to express my sincere thanks to all the teachers and students who have been involved in welcoming and supporting the students as they adjust to high school life. 


Connie Pikis 

Year 7 Coordinator 

Curriculum Update

The 2020 academic year is off to a very rapid start as we have over 1000 students studying a range of existing courses. As well, we have introduced a variety of new courses and a change in the elective structure in Year 9. These younger students now study a 200 hour elective and two 100 hour electives and so have access to 3 elective subjects. Included in the list of choices for these students is a new course titled Enrichment Mathematics and STEM. Students who have chosen this course will participate in the Sun Sprint Challenge, where the students will design, construct and race electric cars they have created. They will also further their study in Mathematics, particularly in applying mathematical concepts to the real world. In Year 11 we have introduced a new course in Industrial Technology Multimedia with a strong emphasis on graphic media in all its forms.
In Year 12 this year we have a number of new courses that will be assessed for the first time, including Studies in Catholic Thought and Entertainment, the latter of which is being delivered in a vocational framework. We are continually looking at our curriculum offerings to ensure that they meet the needs of the girls and the demands being created in a rapidly changing work place. We have already begun to look into further curriculum offerings for 2021.
Gregg Conroy
Leader of Learning



PDHPE Policy


Current SCC Sports

This term the following representative sports are taking place on a Thursday afternoon in the SCC competition. 


  • Junior Volleyball (Yr 7)
  • Inter Volleyball (Yr 8-9)
  • SCC AFL (Yr 7-9)
  • Senior Touch football (Yr 10)



The following CGSSSA Gala days will take place in Term 1 so please check the Compass daily notices and student emails for information regarding trials and team selection.

  • Softball – Monday 10th February
  • Cricket – Tuesday 18th February
  • Touch Football – Wednesday 26th February


Some SCC representative sport gala days do not automatically send individuals and/or teams to the NSWCCC Championships.  To trial for the NSWCCC championships in sports that do not link directly to the pathway, students need to individually register and attending an external trial.

If your daughter is interested in any of the following sports, please see the NSWCCC website below for information regarding trialling for the NSWCCC teams.



If you have any further questions please see Mrs Feeney and other PE staff


2020 NSWCCC Dates  





–     Individual CCC registration closing date

April 27

–     CCC Selections

April 30



–     CCC

Sept 18



–     Individual Open CCC Registration closing date

May 11

–     CCC Open Selections

May 18

–     CCC Open Championships

June 29



–     Individual CCC registration closing date

Feb 12

–     CCC Selections

Feb 17

–       U16 All Schools Selections




–     Individual CCC registration closing date

March 27

–     CCC Championships

March 31

Cross Country*


–     CCC Championships

June 12



–     CCC Championships/Selections

June 2-3



–     Individual CCC registration closing date

March 18

–     NSWCCC Golf Selections

March 30



–     Individual CCC registration closing date

March 16

–     CCC Selections

March 23



–     Individual CCC registration closing date

April 30

–     CCC 15 years Selections

May 5

–     CCC Open Selections

May 6

Rugby 7s


–     Individual CCC registration closing date

May 1

–     CCC Selections

May 5

–       Competition


Softball *


–     Individual CCC registration closing date

Feb 7

–     CCC Selections

Feb 24



–     CCC Championships

March 31



–     Individual CCC registration closing date

Feb 24

–     CCC Selections

March 2

Touch Football*


–     CCC Championships

April 8



–     All Schools Registration closing date

Feb 19

–     All Schools Individuals

Feb 26



–     Individual CCC registration closing date

March 6

–     CCC Opens Selections

March 11

–     All Schools U16 Selections

April 30



–     Individual CCC registration closing date

March 12

–     CCC Selections

March 16

–     CCC Junior Championships

Nov 2

–     CCC Senior Championships

Nov 4


 *Bethany College will advertise the trials for these events to students separately or alternatively they will be selected from the College Swimming or Athletics Carnival

Student Sporting Achievements

Students at Bethany College are involved in a wide range of sports representing themselves through the College as well as at external sporting events.

We would encourage all parents with students achieving in the various sporting arenas outside of school, to send through any results so we may be able to share them with the Bethany College community.

Please email lauren.feeney@syd.catholic.edu.au with any details of events and photos of your daughter you would be happy for us to publish to the newsletter.


Chloe Jackson & Caitlin Hollis – Oztag

We would like to congratulate Chloe Jackson and Caitlin Hollis.

Chloe and Caitlin both competed in the Oztag Nationals competition in Coffs Harbour in October and from this tournament Australian teams would be selected.

Chloe has been selected in an Australian girls 16s Oztag team to play in Auckland this April. 

Caitlin  has also been selected in an Australian girls  Oztag team to play in Auckland this April.


Lauren Feeney

Sport Coordinator

Safer Internet Day Coming Up!

Start the chat about online safety and help make every day a Safer Internet Day!

On Tuesday, 11 February 2020 Bethany College will be participating in Safer Internet Day 2020. The theme this year is `together for a better internet’ and Australia’s eSafety Commissioner is encouraging parents to mark the day by starting family conversations about online safety.

Instilling positive online safety behaviour has never been more important as today’s generation of children grow up in an online world. While there are many benefits to being online, the availability of online games, social networking sites, smartphones and internet-connected tablets can sometimes leave children and young people vulnerable to harmful content and behaviours.

You can download a variety of Safer Internet Day resources at esafety.gov.au/sid and use them to start the conversation about online safety with your family or daughter. Or you can simply check out eSafety’s great range of advice and resources. Why not get started by visiting the parents and carers pages and reading the practical tips for kicking off an online safety conversation?

2020 Student Planner Artwork Winner

Congratulations and thank you to Natalie Milenkovski for her contribution to this year’s Student Planner.  Natalie was the winner of our competition last year, that asked students to depict the College values of Relationship, Acceptance, Justice, Welcome, Service and Wholeness through art. These artworks feature as part of our 2020 Student Planner, capturing visually the essence of our values here at Bethany.  We are delighted to be able to showcase Natalie’s work and encourage you to have a look at these artworks more closely through your daughter’s Student Planner. Well done Natalie.

Welcome to Student Voice

On behalf of the Student Leadership team for 2020, we’d like to take this opportunity to warmly welcome all new members, both staff, students and particularly Year 7 to our Bethany College community. As your student leaders, we look forward to a year of long-lasting relationships, connection and memories with a vision for creating a school culture valuing opportunity. The opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to how and what our shared high school journey looks like for us, everyday. 

An upcoming initiative, in support of those affected within our community by the recent devastation and loss created by the bushfires will be a Bushfire Relief Party run by both, DJ Desh and DJ Laguzza. 

The Bushfire Relief Party will be held on Friday the 14th of February at lunch in Yallunga Hall, where a gold coin donation will be collected upon entry to be put towards supporting a great cause. 

In terms of upcoming events, the Swimming Carnival will be held on 17th of February and it will be an opportunity to participate in and encourage some friendly house rivalry! 


2020 Student Leadership Team

St. Michael’s Youth Mass

Bethany College organises a monthly youth mass at St Michael’s Catholic Church Hurstville, aiming to engage attendants with the Catholic faith in a communal setting, whilst demonstrating support of youth ministry events within the local parish. These masses are held at 6pm on Sunday evenings once a month, and are a wonderful opportunity to live out Bethany’s values whilst sharing in the celebration of the Eucharist. 

There are many different roles to be filled including singing, reading, altar serving and more, which students can nominate themselves for using a google document shared monthly by Mrs Kennaugh via Compass. 

The next youth mass is at 6pm next Sunday the 9th of February, and students are more than welcome to bring their friends and family. Hope to see you there!

Kind regards,


Sebastian Laguzza 
Youth Ministry Coordinator / English Teacher / Head of Media Team



Slow Down to 40km/h When the Bus Lights Flash


In NSW there are thousands of buses that travel every day transporting students to and from school. Due to their size and mass, buses take more time to stop. Crashes involving buses often result in more severe outcomes for other road users.


The Centre for Road Safety is committed to improving safety around buses and is implementing a tactical school bus safety campaign. This is a reminder for parents and carers that lights flash on buses to warn motorists that buses are picking up and dropping off children. Drivers must not overtake or pass a bus with flashing lights at more than 40lm/h.

You can help keep children safe by:

–       Slowing down to 40km/h when bus lights are flashing

–       Looking out for children crossing the road near bus stops, in schools zones or along bus routes

–       Giving way to buses when they merge back into traffic

For more information visit: https://tinyurl.com/buslightsflashing   

SCS Privacy Policy – Standard Collection Notice

Parents/guardians are reminded that from time to time, SCS are required to provide student details and background data to Government agencies. The SCS Privacy Policy – Standard Collection Notice is available on the SCS public website (Home/About Us/Policy Documents): https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Bw0hEIncNQFMOE5uaXZ2bVpfWUE/view


School Fees Update

The 2020 annual fees have been generated and emailed out. The fees are payable by the 28th February unless you have a payment schedule in place as indicated at the bottom of your fee statement. If you would like to arrange a payment schedule, please contact the school on 8566-0711.

Please find below a letter from Sydney Catholic Schools regarding changes in fee structure, payments and liability.

If you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to contact the school to discuss any matter further.

Lachlan Skeen

Business Manager