Volume 2 - 21 Feb 2020


Dear Parents, Carers and Friends of Bethany,


For we know that if the tent that is our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 

2 Corinthians 5:1


Over the last few months, our country has experienced many natural disasters and much tragedy. From the drought, to disastrous fires to flooding and severe wind damage and the effects on people with the coronavirus, senseless killings and loss to families. During these times, our faith can become more meaningful and a comfort as we turn to God for guidance and hope for better days ahead. Throughout the events across Summer, many people felt helpless and could only watch the suffering from our TV screens. Through such tragedy my faith is constantly renewed by the spirit in which people rally around those in need. Last weekend the Fire Fight Australia concert held in Sydney where 75000 music fans joined as one not only for a good time but to stand united in support of the victims of the bush fires and to thank RFS volunteers and other emergency workers was heartwarming. The same could be said of our students especially our Year 12 leaders who during the holidays were devising a plan of how Bethany could offer support. This was the beginnings of the Bethany Dance Party held last Friday. 

For those who have suffered the loss of a loved one, I pray that the words of Corinthians can offer some comfort, knowing that our eternal home will never be destroyed nor entry ignored.


High Achievers Assembly


Last week we were delighted to invite back 77 of our high achievers from the Graduating Class of 2019. These girls were an inspiration particularly to our Year 11 and 12 students where a question and answer forum was held to hear advice from our high achievers. Tips about best ways to manage stress, strategies for effective study, life balance as an HSC student, managing positive relationships and balancing reliance on technology with study were discussed. It was with great pride that we heard of the plans of each student as some embarked on their University entry this week. We were also delighted to hear further success of 3 students who joined the over 90 ATAR group. This means that 35 students achieved an ATAR over 90 which is 1 in 4 students. I also thank our Acting Regional Director Mr Phil Gane for speaking at our Assembly.



New Bathrooms

It was with much delight that we were able to open our new bathrooms last Tuesday. Our new bathroom block has 26 cubicles replacing the block which had 12 cubicles. This should help better suit the needs of our girls. This new block can be accessed from both Yallunga Court and Penola Court and thus will better enhance the flow of people as the girls move around the College. On behalf of the Bethany Community, I thank Sydney Catholic Schools for their financial support in making this project come to fruition so quickly.

Open Day

We will be holding our Open Day on March 3 between 3 and 6pm. The entire College will be open for prospective students and their families to view what we have on offer at the College. Students who are currently in Year 5 will need to enrol by Week 10 of this term. Please pass this information on to families that you know who have daughters of this age.

For our current students, Open Day is a great opportunity to showcase our greatest asset, your daughter. The feedback that we receive about our Open Days often focuses on the welcoming nature of our students. Please encourage your daughter to volunteer for Open Day.


P&F Bingo Evening

Save the Date: June 26 – 6pm

Venue: Yallunga Hall

All parents and students welcome



Robyn Rodwell


From the Assistant Principal

Safe travel 

Like all schools we are committed to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of our students as they travel to and from school each day. 

I ask you to be aware of the following expectations that we have of students as they travel on public transport.

  • Students should cross roads at designated crossings where they are available. 
  • Students should cross all roads in a careful and sensible manner at all times. 
  • Students are reminded that they should not run to make the lights or a particular bus.
  • When waiting for the lights to change, particularly at the corner of Forest Rd and Croydon Rd they should stand well back from the kerb. 
  • Students are also reminded to stand well back from the kerb when waiting for public buses to arrive, and wait until the bus has fully stopped before they attempt to approach or board the bus.

Families are reminded that our College library is open until 4.00pm each afternoon (unless the students are with a Tutor, then 4.30pm), making use of the Library is a good strategy for those wishing to avoid the rush for public buses.

I ask that you have a conversation with your daughter/daughters, reminding them of the necessity of making sensible choices while travelling to and from school. 



Last newsletter I referred to the collective sense of pride we share as a community when our students wear the College uniform in accordance with our expectations. I refer to our Student Planner (P.19) and seek the support of families to ensure the finer points of our policy are adhered to. Students are NOT permitted to wear false eyelashes or eyelash extensions and nail polish of any form. 

Girls are reminded that the blazer is the outer garment at all times and therefore are not permitted to wear their cardigan to and from school on any day without the blazer. Additionally, families are reminded that the uniform policy permits only one small and simple pair of gold or silver studs.  Please refer to the image below highlighting a few images of earrings outside our parameters. We appreciate your support and cooperation in relation to this matter. 

Extra Curricular involvement 

Research confirms for us the value and importance of school connectedness, that this the belief that those in the community care about them and know them both as a learner and as an individual. When students experience a strong sense of belonging they are far more likely to make good choices, engage in healthy behaviours and succeed academically. One of the best ways that students can experience this connection is through participation in the range of extra-curricular activities on offer at the College. I encourage every girl to look for opportunities to be engaged in our community beyond the classroom. Find something you love or something you are good at and give it a go. The chance to learn a skill and to connect with other girls across year groups is a great way to increase resilience and promote a sense of positive wellbeing. 


Public Speaking 

Friday nights in Term 1 


Wednesday afternoons – Term 2


Wednesday  Lunchtimes 

Board games

Wednesday  Lunchtime

Media team

3 x Term Friday B 


Wednesday B  – Lunchtime


Tuesday before school (7.45am)


Friday before school (7.45am)

Representative Sport 

Training before school 

Vinnies Sandwich making 

After school Tuesday’s as per the published roster 

Term 1 dates 10/3 and 7/4

Youth Mass

The second Sunday of each Month at St Michael’s Hurstville

Smile Team

Working with SRC throughout the year

Anime / Manga Club

Friday B



Save the Date 

Many parents find the cyber world very challenging. The constantly changing nature of this space makes it difficult for parents to keep up to date. On Monday, 4th May we will be holding a parent information evening on internet safety.  We encourage as many parents as possible to make themselves available on this evening between 6pm and 7pm to hear from a former undercover detective, who specialises in the area of child safety in the cyber world and will provide some extremely helpful tips for parents as they navigate this challenging space. 



Jodie Hughes

Assistant Principal


What’s Happening in Religious Education

St Michael’s Youth Mass

Our first Youth Mass for the year was celebrated at St Michael’s on Sunday 7th February.  For a very stormy and wet weekend, we had a great turn out with the girls showing some serious dedication and commitment to arrive at mass on time despite the inclement weather.  It was wonderful to see the young women in our College taking a leadership role within the mass. The next Youth Mass will be held on Sunday 8th March. Notices will go out to the girls via Compass where they will be able to register their participation.

Shrove Tuesday

On Tuesday morning, we will be selling pancakes for a gold coin donation.  These will be on sale from 7.45am and we encourage all students to come and participate in our launch event for Caritas.  During Lent this year, we will be supporting Caritas and the works that they do for disadvantaged communities. Students from each year group will be allocated a country that they will focus on in their fundraising efforts. Caritas works in many countries to help provide clean water, sanitation and education – very basic things that we take for granted every day, that many people just do not have access to.  Please encourage your daughters to support this initiative as during this time of Lent, we are called to do something more for others. We are a fortunate community and many of us have much more than we need. To give to others in their time of need is a great show of our solidarity with them.



Diane Kennaugh

Leader of Religious Education and Mission

Lenten Penance

Parenting in 2020 – an Evening with Andrew Fuller

NCCD – Fact Sheet for Parents, Guardians and Carers

St Vincent De Paul – Sandwich Making

In Term 4 of 2019, Bethany College became involved with providing sandwiches for St Vincent De Paul’s night patrol organisation. Students kindly volunteered up their lunch time or an hour after school in order to prepare a variety of sandwiches which were distributed to the homeless by St Vincent De Paul. 

This initiative was extremely successful due to both the student and teachers who volunteered their time to show support for the vulnerable in our community. 

This year, the Sandwich Making initiative continued, starting on Tuesday the 11th of February. Students and teachers made an array of sandwiches which were delivered to St. Vincent De Paul’s Head Office in Lewisham that afternoon.

Particular thanks must be given to ALL students and staff who gave up their time to help, with a special thanks to Dinethi Algama (Year 12) who was selfless in helping coordinate rosters on the day.




Sebastian Laguzza

Youth Ministry Coordinator

Social Justice News

On Friday the 14th February, Bethany College hosted a dance party to raise funds for those in our community who have been affected by the recent bushfires. Thanks to the combined efforts of the staff, the Year 12 leadership team and members of Year 9 who collected donations at the door and Year 8’s who sold Valentine’s lollipops, we managed to raise an amazing total of $747 to donate to the St Vincent de Paul Bushfire Appeal. It was wonderful to see the support of the whole school for this amazing cause. A special thank you to Mrs Colreavy and Mr DJ Laguzza, without their time and effort this initiative would not have been able to happen. 

Dinethi Algama

Following on from Bethany College’s recent successes, you may be aware, there is a Bupa Aged Care facility located just behind Bethany. From my experience volunteering there, I have formed strong connections with residents who have taught me several lessons about patience and respect as I have been exposed to many realities about life that I wouldn’t have encountered before.  

Here are some of the experiences of other girls who also volunteer there. 

Dinethi Algama, Social Justice Prefect, Year 12

“(Volunteering) It is such a rewarding experience to meet the elderly and to listen to their stories. A lot of them don’t have any family that can visit them so they really value the companionship that we can give them. They love having someone to talk to or play games with. It’s amazing to be able to provide them (with some company).” 

Georgia Marks, Year 12

“This is my 4th year there, and as always it is a very rewarding experience. There is one moment at the nursing home that I hold particularly close to my heart. There is an elderly resident, who due to complications, is unable to form proper words and sentences. His speech disorder makes it very hard for us to communicate but we spend time reading to him and playing games. One day when we were saying goodbye he managed to say the words  “I love you”. That was the first and only time we have heard him say something clearly and so we were overwhelmed with happiness.”

Isabella Staninoski, Year 12

“I started volunteering as a means of completing my community service component of the Duke of Edinburgh Award program. However, after the first visit, I instantly felt a connection to all the beautiful people that I met and got to know quite well. They shared their life stories and offered insightful advice. Our conversations not only prompted laughter at times but were so profound that I remember them still to this day. This, not mentioning the numerous other reasons, is why I continue to volunteer, with each week creating new memories and experiences that have truly impacted my life.” 



If anyone is interested in volunteering, Bethany College is currently looking for volunteers for the Open Day and Scalabrini Bexley has recently reached out to Bethany asking for student volunteers. I really encourage all girls to participate as it truly is a wonderful experience and you truly get more than you expect. 


Lingee Bai

Debating Prefect – Year 12

Year 7 ‘Flames’ Receive their Colour House Badge

On Tuesday 11th February, the Sports Captains had the honour of officially welcoming the Year 7 ‘Flames’ into their Colour  House community.

Each Sport House Captain (Oodgeroo- Gabriella Kristevski, Melba- Amber Lazos, Franklin- Victoria Coolentianos, Kellerman- Montana Duggan) and College Sport Captain- Eva Kostopoulos, had the privilege of welcoming the new Year 7’s into their House and giving them the students their  House colour badges. These House Colour badges are to be worn with pride by each girl on their school uniform everyday.

We are excited to see the girls get involved in House spirit at upcoming school events and participate in a wide range of extracurricular groups to earn House points for their given House.

 – Gabriella Krstevski

“Welcome to Bethany Morning” Tea for New Students in Years 8 to 11

On Wednesday, 19th February, the new students who have joined the Bethany community this year in Years 8 to 11 had morning tea with their Year Coordinators, the College Counsellor and members of the Leadership team.

The morning tea was a wonderful opportunity for the new students to meet each other and to talk about how they have found their experience at Bethany so far. 

Thank you to all the young ladies who attended.

Mary Matthews

Leader of Wellbeing



Bethany College Swimming Carnival

On Monday 17th February, the College Swimming carnival took place at Botany Aquatic centre.

A great day of sporting success was displayed in the pool with many records broken including:


50m Butterfly

16’s – Lemoni De Silva

15’s – Tameeka Johnson


50m Freestyle

13’s – Juliet King


50m Backstroke

15’s – Tameeka Johnson


50m Breaststroke

17’s – Natalia Kaskoutas


100m Freestyle

17’s – Keria Warn




CGSSSA Softball

On Friday the 14th of February, girls from Years 7-12 competed in the CGSSSA Softball Championships. This year’s competition was at held at Santa Sabina College. Bethany played extremely well, being undefeated the entire day, progressing to the Grand Final against Santa Sabina. The final score was 10-1 Bethany, making Bethany the overall winners of the competition.

The girls would like to thank Miss Bailey and Miss Summons for their coaching and support throughout the day.

Esabella De Los Reyes, Year 12



CGSSSA Cricket

On Tuesday the 18th of February a group of students from year 8-12 attended the CGSSSA Cricket Gala Day. The event was held at Queens Park, Waverley and although the girls did not make the semi finals, a great day was had by all.  Thank you to Mr Wilkie for coaching on the day.



Lauren Feeney

Sports Coordinator

Elite Performer

We are proud to announce that one of our students has been awarded with the first ever Triple Threat Scholarship for 2020 from ACTiv Elite Performers.
This award is given to three students out of 250 performers and is specifically for performers who excel in singing, dancing and acting. Not only do they need to be talented but they have to be humble, positive, dedicated and most of all passionate! 
Year 11 student, Caitlin Turner was an easy pick for the Triple Threat scholarship as she works hard in all her classes and is a natural comedic actress! 
Congratulations Caitlin.

Managing Students with Individual Health Care Plans

Managing Students with Individual Health Care Plans (IHCP) at Bethany College

The College is continuing to develop best practice for the management of students with medical conditions. It is important that all members of the College community are aware of how we manage students with IHCP’s and of our practices to ensure student safety.

All schools in the Sydney Catholic Schools system have developed management plans for students at risk of anaphylaxis and asthma using: “Asthma Friendly School Program”  and “Anaphylaxis Procedures for Catholic Schools”.. The documents specific to anaphylaxis have been prepared in conjunction with the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy Inc (ASCIA). 

Bethany College follows these guidelines by requesting that parents annually provide an IHCP to the school. The IHCP should be developed jointly by the parents or guardian, their family doctor, the school and the student. Students diagnosed at risk of anaphylaxis must have an individual emergency response plan, ASCIA Anaphylaxis Action Plan, completed and signed by the child’s doctor as part of their individual healthcare plan. It must incorporate information and planned emergency treatments that are relevant to the particular student in the event of an anaphylaxis attack. It is important to note that these are medical documents and therefore must be completed and signed by the treating doctor (eg Immunology/Allergy Specialist, Paediatrician or General Practitioner).


Frequently asked Q & A 

How do I know the College meets requirements for managing students with IHCPs?

The College undergoes an annual compliance audit which requires us to provide evidence that we follow best practice in relation to management of students with IHCP’s. Sydney Catholic Schools mandates that all staff must have current CPR and training in the management of anaphylaxis.


Where does the College maintain the information about my daughters IHCP?

All information is stored electronically in the staff Compass portal so that your daughter’s teachers can access details and management plans. This is not accessible by students. Hard copies of Anaphylaxis Action Plans and IHCP’s are placed in student services, TAS prep area, Pastoral Coordinators Offices, staff rooms and the Canteen. These areas are visible to staff only. 


What happens on excursions?

Every event outside of the normal school day must have a risk assessment completed and reviewed prior to the event proceeding. The risk assessment includes all students who have IHCP’s and specifies the additional management strategies that will be put in place for the excursion or event. All staff supervising on the excursion are briefed on students with additional medical needs.


Who looks after First Aid in the school?

Staff are trained in first aid. Students Services is the main point for provision of first aid. Access to medical assistance and first aid is included in all excursion risk assessments.


My daughter does not want it made public that she carries an Epipen or puffer or is living with a chronic health condition. How do we maintain her privacy?

We will maintain your daughter’s request for privacy at all times, however it is in your daughter’s best interest that she shares details about her health with her friends. The College Counsellor and your daughter’s Year Coordinator can facilitate this process if your daughter is hesitant to speak about her condition. All information is maintained in confidence and is disseminated to staff in accordance with our duty of care. 


Why do I need to provide a new Anaphylaxis Action Plan signed by my doctor each year if there is no change to the plan?

It is a legal requirement that the plan is updated annually and certified by a doctor. 


Does my daughter need to provide a spare Epipen to the school office?

No, but all students are welcome to have a spare which is securely stored in student services. Your daughter should carry her own Epipen with her at all times. This includes excursions.


What happens if my daughter leaves her Epipen or puffer at home?

She should notify student services as soon as possible. 


The College keeps additional Epipens and puffers in a number of locations around the College. They are not provided as spares for students to carry as replacements. They are for emergency use when required.


What is the procedure for sport and leaving school grounds for PDHPE?

Rolls will indicate if a student should be carrying an Epipen and or puffer. Staff will in confidence request the student show that they are carrying the Epipen and or puffer. Students cannot leave the college grounds if they do not have their Epipen and or puffer on their person.


Do I need to notify the school if my daughter had an anaphylactic reaction outside of school time?

YES. In certain individuals anaphylaxis will be more rapid and severe than the previous reaction.  Similarly the reaction may have been caused by a new “trigger”. Hence we will require a new plan certified by your treating doctor following each reaction.


Who do I contact if I need to update information about my daughters IHCP?

Student Services


The College takes the health and wellbeing of each member of our community seriously. We will continue to review our practices and to work with parents to ensure the safety of all students. Please email info@bethanyhurstville.catholic.edu.au  for further enquiries. 


Current as at December 2019

Review date: December 2020

Careers News

Welcome to the 2020 academic year some upcoming dates are:


ANU Applications 2021

Direct applications for 2021 will open in March 2020 for all domestic school leavers.  For information go to https://www.anu.edu.au/study/apply/domestic-applications-anu-undergraduate


University of Sydney 360 degree tour

Enjoy looking across all parts of the university in any direction you choose. Look at what university life is like across the lecture rooms, activities, research labs, sport and much more go to http://tour.sydney.edu.au/


UCAT Key dates

The University Clinical Aptitude Test must be completed to enter medical school in Australia. Registration and booking opens on 2 March 2020 and closes on 11 May 2020.

MedEntry will be running a two day UCAT workshop at UTS Broadway campus on 7-8 March 2020.

Details at  : www.MedEntry.edu.au


UAC Information Evening

The Universities Admissions Centre information evening will take place at Sydney Technical Boys High on April 7 between 6pm and 7pm. Parents and students are welcome, there will be speakers from UAC covering the areas of the ATAR, Scaling, Scholarships and EAS.


Sydney Design School Info Session Wednesday 25 March 2020 6pm Considering a future in interior design? Come to Sydney Design Schools first Info Session of the year and find out everything you need to know about their world class accredited courses. Study in the day, evening or online and make your dream career a reality. Wednesday 25 March 2020 6pm / Level 2, 40 Oxley St, St Leonards. Register online https://bit.ly/2GzL8UJ Registered Training Provider 91446.


Business Cadetships at UBS

Applications for Business cadetships at UBS open on March 9 and close on 13 May visit www.business cadetships.com.au.


Australian Airforce Cadets Orientation Evening 

Date:  26 February

Time:  7.30 – 8.30pm

Venue:  Rockdale Multi-User Depot (MUD) Chandler Street, Rockdale




Stephen Donlan

Year 12 Coordinator / Careers Advisor


Information for Parents and Carers – Looking after your Daughter’s Mental Health

It is often difficult to detect the difference between symptoms related to normal adolescent development, such as occasional moodiness and irritability, and an emerging mental health problem. A  number of students experience stress, anxiety or depression due to increased workload, friendship changes, family conflict/changes, and assessments and exams. If a young person is going through a difficult time, it is important that they get the support from family, friends and health professionals if required.

Good mental health is about being able to study and work to your full potential, cope with day to day life stresses and be able to live in a satisfying and meaningful way. Despite the fact that emotions such as feeling down, tense or angry are normal emotions for young people, if they persist for long periods and interfere in daily functioning it can be part of a mental health problem. As a result, the ability to function at school and in their personal relationships can be compromised.

Warning Signs:

  • Reduced enjoyment and participation in activities they used to enjoy
  • Withdrawing or isolating (i.e. spending significant time in their room)
  • Changes in appetite and sleep patterns
  • Easily irritated or angry for no reason
  • Underperforming or not attending school
  • Poor motivation
  • Lowered self-esteem
  • Increased risky behaviours i.e. drugs, alcohol, acting out, self-harm.
  • Difficulties with concentration and focus
  • Unusually stressed, worried, down or crying for no reason
  • Expressing negative, distressing or unusual thoughts
  • Prolonged and persistent low mood, moodiness or irritability

How to help:

  • Keep communication open
  • Show empathy and avoid judgement
  • Be available without being intrusive
  • Spend quality time with the person
  • Take the person’s feelings seriously
  • Encourage and support positive friendships
  • Encourage activities that promote mental health
  • Give positive feedback
  • Let the person know that you love them and that you are proud of them
  • Seek professional help if required (Counselling, Headspace, Psychological treatment, GP)

Please review the document below for tools to help manage teenage anxiety.




Bethany College provides counselling services to students as part of the pastoral program. This service reflects the values of the Bethany College tradition, with particular emphasis on supporting positive well-being.

As a Clinical Psychologist, I have extensive experience in working with adolescents supporting them with various challenges as they embark on a journey of self-discovery. My role at Bethany College is to: provide short term counselling and support for students (i.e. stress management, study skill, self-understanding/self-esteem, improving anxiety management… just to name a few); liaising with external support services so we can provide continued support in school; crisis intervention; and support parents in linking students in with external services (if required). I also work closely with the Principal, Assistant Principal, Leader of Well-being and Year Coordinators to provide the best all round support for students on every level and am mindful of the benefits of a team approach to welfare and support.

All students are welcome to access the counselling service, with the expectation of a high level of support, trust and privacy. Students are welcome to self-refer, or can be referred directly by parents or Year Coordinators. Parents need to advise the school in writing if they do not want their daughters to access counselling. If you would like to speak with me, as the College Counsellor, I can be contacted via email (k.stratilas@syd.catholic.edu.au) or through the school’s main switchboard 8566 0711.


Katerina Hatzikonstantis

School Counsellor


Bethany Open Day

From the Canteen

Cafe Bethany is a school run canteen which offers health choices for our students. 

We are open from 07:30 offering a selection of hot and cold food for breakfast.
At recess we have freshly prepared sandwiches, salads, yoghurt, fruit, drinks and a wide selection of snacks available to purchase.
 We also offer a gluten free section where students can purchase snacks.
 Our daily hot food lunch menu is advertised on Compass everyday where each year group can see what is on offer.  
We also have a gluten free section where students can purchase snacks.
We have 2 treat days per term where students can purchase chocolate, chips and fizzy drinks. These days are advertised in advance on Compass.
Students have the option of paying by cash or EFTPOS.
Gillian Young
Canteen Manager