Friday 20 March 2020 


I guess there’s feelings of tiredness, anxiety, intensity, melancholy, weirdness and even emptiness going on.  I’ve felt it, trepidation too of—sadness I think—looking back from New Year 2021.  This week, when a colleague broke down, and another finished their prayer, we knew the weight of it.  We also know that we, the staff, are there for each other, our students and our families—that’s our immediate family, our Marymount families and every family.  We are all in this together.  Parents, politicians, grandparents and children.  

Where there is anxiety, let us trust; where there is fear, let us be vulnerable; where there is misinformation, let there be truth; for to be fully human involves anxiety, fear and misinformation; yet to prevail requires trust, vulnerability and truth.  By New Year 2021, we will know.  Let us pray, let us care for each other and let us be good neighbours in 2020; and if that’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well.  Our children are watching.  From us they will learn. 

Some evolutionary biologists claim our brain evolved to win arguments, not to seek truth. They may be right.  John Cleese. 

I’m sure John Cleese said this because his hope, is our hope, and Christ’s hope: that we will rise above our base instinct ‘to win arguments’, to help our children and each other through COVID-19 and life beyond 2020. 

Follow this link to Michael Carr-Gregg (Psychologist) on tips for parents.  

Closing the Gap Day 

Thursday was National Closing the Gap Day. This year we were reminded that the Gap is not closing.  As a school with an Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander enrolment of 1.5%, we are representative of the Gold Coast.  Our small indigenous Mob feel small in our school. While we hope they feel included, we know, generally, indigenous Australians are behind other Australians in terms of education, health, income and life expectancy.  Over 232 years we have tried denial (Terra Nullius) genocide, segregation, assimilation, self-determination and reconciliation. The gap remains! Being indigenous is being part of a civilisation that goes back more than 60,000 years in Australia. Closing the Gap Day reminds us to be mindful of our indigenous peoples’ heritage and Australia’s history, and to include indigenous Australians in the benefits of the growth and development of our country. 

End of Term Assessment

We understand the expectations on staff in schools.  We have a central role to play assisting parents and the community as we form our children.  This includes during times of adversity.  We also play a role supporting families.  We do this as the year begins, through the easier pattern of mid-term and the hustle of revision, assessment, marking and reporting at the end of term.  

We have really appreciated parent communication in this past week, for the work we do. In the building anxiety, it has been well-received.  Teachers will email outlines of the work ahead each week, from Monday. Details will be available on MOODLE and/or OneNote.

We appreciate that parents make decisions that prioritise the health and well-being of their sons/daughters. However, it is not possible to email the many individual students/families who have kept their children home in recent weeks.  Further, exams must be attended when scheduled, assignments must be submitted on the due date.  Queensland Curriculum & Assessment Authority provide schools with procedures to follow for students, whose medical condition or other circumstances may affect their ability to participate in assessment. Medical certificates are almost always required when exams are missed or assignments are late.  These procedures apply for all Year 11-12 students, and with some limited flexibility to Year 7-10 students.

If the government closes schools, we have indicated how we will continue to support student learning at home.  In anticipation of possible school closures and continued absences, we are moving Term 2 and 3 Assessment in Years 7-10 to more assignment tasks, with tests and exams returning in Term 4. 

We thank parents for your appreciation and support.  

Chris Noonan


If your son/daughter is unwell, they should not come to school.  This is important for the safety and wellbeing of all students and staff. Consult the Queensland Health Time Out poster for exclusion periods. Parents will be contacted to collect children who become unwell during the day.

When a student cannot attend school for any reason, it is requested that the legal guardian notify Student Reception by 8:00am on the day of absence. 

These are the preferred methods:
  1. Parent Portal: Click on Report Student Absence 
  2. BCE Connect App: Absences 


Calendar Dates

Check Parent Portal or BCE Connect App for most current information.



MONDAY 23/03

5:00pm Intermediate Netball (SCNA) CANCELLED


Whole School Assembly CANCELLED
Year 7 Parent Teacher Interviews CANCELLED
Senior Netball (Carrara Indoor Sports Stadium) CANCELLED


Write that Essay Classroom Coaching
Confraternity Fundraising BBQ CANCELLED 


Sport Replacement Lessons: Friday B 5 & 6
AGCC Sports Round #5 CANCELLED

FRIDAY 27/03




MONDAY 30/03

5:00pm Intermediate Netball (SCNA) CANCELLED



9:00am Cross Country
Senior Netball (Carrara Indoor Sports Stadium) CANCELLED



10:30am QISSN Fundraising BBQ CANCELLED


Sport Replacement lessons: Monday A 1 & 2
AGCC Sports Round #6 CANCELLED


Last Day Term 1
Easter LIturgy CANCELLED


Guidance Counsellors

Tips to Help During Times of Stress:

It can feel stressful and overwhelming during an event like the outbreak of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) and we can all be affected differently.

You might feel overwhelmed by the information, conversations and the increased levels of stress in your community. It can be hard to know what information to trust especially in a situation where things are changing so quickly.

During this time some things in your life may be affected by attempts to contain the spread of the virus. You may have been looking forward to an event that’s been cancelled. Or you may have a loved one who is directly affected by the virus.

It’s important to find the right level or type of support for you. And keep in mind that the type of support you may need can change as time passes. For many people staying connected to family and friends/loved ones is important.

The following information and tips outline things that might be helpful to manage any changes to daily life/stress as a result of the virus/cancellations:

Tips to maintain a healthy headspace during this time:
  • Be mindful of exposure to information through stories, traditional and social media. It can be helpful to take a break from the 24-hour news cycle.
  • Do things that make you feel physically and emotionally safe and be with those who are helpful to your wellbeing. 
  • Engage in activities that promote a sense of calm and feeling grounded (use of stimulants/alcohol can be counterproductive with this).
Most of all look after each other! If students are showing any signs of stress or worry, please do not hesitate to contact one of the counsellors.

Heather Clark
Guidance Counsellor

Deputy Principal

Year 7-9 Sport Uniform Notification

As of Monday 23 March 2020, students in Year 7 – 9 are permitted to wear their sport uniform to school on days that they have HPE practical lessons.

This will reduce the risk of overcrowding changerooms at the beginning and end of lessons. This will continue until further notice.

Please do not allow your son/daughter to wear their sport uniform on days that they do not have a practical lesson.

Geoff Browne
Deputy Principal

Assistant Principal Pastoral

Need advice on online safety?

A great eSafety resource is the Parent’s Guide to Online Safety, issued by the eSafety Commissioner. It provides information and advice on a range of pertinent issues to online safety for parents of children of all ages. The link below will take you to the page where you can access the guide.

Viviann Savage
Assistant Principal Pastoral

Religious Life of the School

St Patrick's Day

This day a week ago the P&F Courtyard scene was rocking the St Patrick’s Day vibe with music and dance-offs between teachers and students, green clothes and green patterned painted faces; lighthearted fun and frivolity led by the Year 12s. Today we are working hard on remembering to keep our distance from each other,  sanitising our hands  and keeping them away from our faces. Indeed, things couldn’t be more different. 

In reflecting on the St Patrick effect, there are lessons to be learned.  His story comes to us down fifteen hundred years, from his kidnapping at age 16 in north Wales or north-west England  by Irish marauders, his time as a pig herder to his late-life return to Ireland as the most successful  missionary of his time. The St Patrick  effect  is celebrated around the world wherever Irish people or their descendants are found. With them goes his legacy of Christianity.

From his own writings in “The Confessions”, we find a man of deep humility who referred to himself as an “unlearned sinner “ and that whatever he had achieved was a gift of kindness from God. He insisted that spreading the word of God is not about preaching  but more in the kindness and care we show to others. Today Patrick’s voice  would be telling us to pause with  the helpless as the Good Samaritan did...and this past week there has been much to consider in this regard. 
Rosies Appeal

The two-week appeal to restock some items which have run low in the Burleigh Rosies pantry has been quietly successful. As always, those big hearts of our community hear the call and respond. The overflowing basket of cordial, tea bags, long-life milk and snack bars at SAO speaks eloquently of the kindness present in our school and I can also say that a significant donation was put there by someone from outside school who happened to read our Facebook page.   
Year 11 Retreat

Along with the cancellation of sport and excursions in recent days, comes postponement of:
  • Year 11 Retreat
  • Year 9 Reflection Day
  • College Mass in May
  • Year 10 Connect Mass
  • Year 7 Camp
These are significant gatherings, aspects of our College religious life, are of major importance in each school year and the journey from Year 7 -12. It is hoped that there will be the possibility of  an alternative retreat/reflection day experience later in the year. 

Dolores Maitland

St Patrick's Day

On Friday 13 March all of the students, teachers and staff dressed up in green to celebrate St Patrick’s Day.   It was also a day to get involved in Irish dancing!

To get into the spirit, I wore a green patterned shirt, green fingerless gloves, a green tutu, green clover stickers on my face and light yellow closed in shoes. There were a lot of different activities that happened during lunchtime in the P&F courtyard—selling green ice cups, face painting, games and Irish dancing. The highlight of the day was the Irish dance-off between the teachers and the Year 12 students. While the Year 12 students gave a great performance, Ms Press led the teachers to victory! 
All of the money raised during the day went towards Project Compassion to help communities in need. Thank you to all the students, teachers and staff that got involved during the day to make it such a success! 

Briana Briski
Year 12 Insider

Saint Patrick’s Day was an incomparable time of laughter, joy, happiness, festivities and GREEN! 

Saint Patrick's day at Marymount College is an all-important day on the calendar. Serving as a tribute to Ireland and its primary patron saint, the day is one of the prominent Christian festivals. March 17 marks the fifth-century death of our beloved Saint Patrick and, for over a thousand years, has been celebrated as a religious feast day. Moreover, the date additionally celebrates the arrival of Christianity into Ireland. 
At Marymount, the holiday has evolved into so much more; we support the exclusive green colour, celebrate with prayer and complete festivities with Irish dancing!  Last Friday, students from Years 7 to 12 enjoyed the annual festivities; the Marymount Community resembled a sea of green. From mint to olive and emerald to turquoise, the community demonstrated the dedication we uphold.

Porsha Cush
Year 8 Insider
See more St Patrick's Day Photos

My Rosie’s Experience

Volunteering for Rosie’s was one of the best decisions I have ever made.

Not only did it push me out of my comfort zone, but it also gave me an experience like no other. Being able to spend time with the homeless was a very eye-opening experience for me. I found it extremely rewarding being able to spend time talking to these people and hearing their stories.

My favourite part of the night was playing the guitar and singing with a homeless man who regularly attends these meetups.  Even though he is homeless, he still wanted to help me and teach me lessons that I will keep with me for the rest of my life. I highly recommend getting a group of friends together and volunteering some of your time to help those who are in need, by serving food but more importantly just listening to what they have to say. 

Will Ross 
Donate to Project Compassion Online

Student Teacher Advisory Council

First STAC Meeting Report

We were incredibly excited to open our first Student-Teacher Advisory Council (STAC) meeting for the year, welcoming all of our year level leaders.

Year 11: Will Ross and Mia Britton
Year 10: Nicholas Ranson and Charlotte Threlfall (off-campus at Reflection Day)
Year 9: Lachlan Lake and Luana Taylor
Year 8: Cooper Ryan and Indiana Locke.

These students are the STAC Representatives for each year level and will be joined by our Year 7 leaders later in the term. 

The school’s theme for this year is Find Your True North encouraging each and every student to identify what they value and which direction that they want their schoolwork, sporting endeavours, extra-curricular involvement, or life to move in.  The idea is to identify what is important to them. 

This year in STAC we aim to incorporate this theme by connecting each year level and work together in order to achieve great things. We have complete faith in our year level leaders that they will work hard, be role-models to their peers, and guide the school in a positive direction. 

During this meeting, our Representatives were incredibly honoured to have Executive Director of Brisbane Catholic Education, Ms Pam Betts, present the STAC badges to us. This highlighted the importance and significance of these roles within the school and the opportunities that the STAC Representatives will have over the course of the year.

Thomas Browne & Halle Geyer
College Vice Captains & STAC Leaders

Year 12

Year 12 Report

It is an interesting time for us all, with the Year 12s particularly keen to be informed as to how they will be impacted.

Amid the uncertainty, we aim to provide a calm, stable and positive environment conducive to the continuation of their learning. Our focus is very much on looking after them from a physical, mental and emotional well-being perspective. To this end, on Tuesday we held a Year 12 assembly where the following points were made:
  • The school is open, and classes are running
  • All assignments will be handed in as per the original due dates
  • The exams set down for Week 10 will be held as per the exam schedule
  • They should continue with their studies and their exam preparations as normal
  • Teachers are prepared for the potential of any school closures via online learning platforms
  • If anyone was feeling uncertain about anything, they are encouraged to speak to us as Heads of Year
  • As the situation evolves, we will inform them as soon as possible
It is hoped that by keeping communication lines open and honest, we can quell the potential for rising stress and anxiety levels in our seniors. We thank parents and care-givers for their assistance in this area and encourage them to be connected via the College App so as to have up-to-date information. 

Formal Change of Venue

As advised via email, the Senior Formal is still planned to go ahead at this stage. There has, however, been a change of venue for the event. Unfortunately, the Marriott is undergoing renovations during our scheduled booking. Following due consideration of alternate locations, we are pleased to advise that the new venue for the Formal will be the Mercure Gold Coast Resort. 

Matt Carroll and Irene Scott
Head & Assistant Head of Year 12.

Year 10

Reflection Day

Reflection Day is one of the most important days of the College year for Years 8, 9 and 10.

On Wednesday 4 March the Year 10s had our final Reflection Day of high school at Bond University, hosted by Mr Michael Fitzpatrick. The first part of our day was spent getting to know someone in our year that we don’t really talk to.   We were answering quite personal questions such as how do we want to be seen once we leave Marymount? and how do we believe we are seen at the moment? We had a few people share their thoughts on each. 
After morning tea we played a game of music trivia in groups of eight, including songs all the way from the 80s to now. Even a few of our amazing pastoral teachers got involved. 

We then had multiple rounds of dance battles that were judged by the one and only Edwin. Some of these dances included the Nutbush, the Macarena and the Tango. 

After lunch, we came back and spent quite a lot of time reflecting back on who we are and how we treat other people.  We especially focused on apologising to someone for previous behaviour or giving them a boost of encouragement. Although the day was spent reflecting back on our past, we were really looking to our future.
I think everyone there can agree, however, that one of the more light-hearted highlights of the day was watching our teachers fighting to win the Nutbush dance battle!
Jessica Eaton
Year 10 Insider

Year 8

2020 Pastoral Care Representatives for Year 8

Congratulations to the following students who have been selected by their pastoral care class to represent them and their voice for 2020. A great opportunity to develop their leadership skills.

8 AA Will Sweeny, Charlie Smith
8 AB Hendrik Coulam, Ashtyn Merrostsy
8 BD Carys Garrett-Jones, Blake Taylor
8 BE Seth Walker, Charlie Walsh
8 KG Nick Cogo, Alyson Stimson
8 KH Charlie Sewell, Lucy Tyson
8 PI Josie Hamilton, Byron McDonald 
8 PJ Giancarlo Falcetta, Bronte Parke

Peter Carroll & Hannah Richardson
Head & Assistant Head of Year 8

Year 7

Marymount Planespotter in the News

Year 7 student, and aviation enthusiast, Skyler Williams recently featured in a local Chanel 9 Gold Coast news story about the Gold Coast Airport’s Aircraft photography competition.

Skyler is a keen aircraft photographer, also known as a plane spotter, who is very involved in pursuing this interest with the Australian Air League – Coolangatta Squadron. 

The Australian Air League is a community organisation for girls and boys aged 8-18 interested in aviation: fun, friendship and flying. A number of people from the Marymount community are also involved with this great organisation. The Air League is open to new members, details are attached in the community section of this newsletter or see Skyler for more details.

We wish Skyler the best of luck for his entry in the Planespotting competition. 
A link to the story can be located here

Garrett Fitzgerald


Senior Curriculum

Year 12 General Subjects

Follow this link for the Term IV External Exam schedule for all General (ATAR) subjects.
  • Year 12 students will only attend school from Monday 26 October to Tuesday 17 November for assessment 
  • These exams are designed and corrected by the QCAA’s external markers for each subject. In Maths and Science subjects they count for 50% of the student’s overall grade and 25% for all other subjects.
  • All General subjects have an external exam as their 4th and final piece of assessment.
  • Students will be preparing with revision activities of mock exams in many cases in the weeks prior to the commencement of the exam block.
Year 12 Applied Subjects
  • Students who are completing Applied subjects will have concluded their class and assessment tasks by the commencement of the exam block period. 
There is a three-day Exam Block for Year 12 in Week 10. This includes the Essential English Common Internal Assessment exam, which replaces an external exam at the end of the year. There is a similar exam for Essential Maths early in Term II.

Year 11

Year 11 subjects continue to run exams during class time in these final weeks of the Term.

Peter Shaw
Assistant Principal Senior Curriculum

Year 7-9

Year 9 Write That Essay

Over the last month, I have had the pleasure of observing the classroom coaching and writing workshops delivered by Write That Essay.  The students have been engaged with the process of writing on demand and experimenting with different types of sentences. On Wednesday 25 March, we have a further workshop for all Year 9 students on writing paragraphs. The program is being implemented successfully thanks to our dedicated Year 9 teachers.

Parent Information Evenings

Thank you to all the parents who made it along to our parent information evenings. I hope the evening met your expectations and you walked away with relevant information about your child’s year. The presentations for Year 8 & 9 are located on the parent portal.  If you have any suggestions or feedback on the evening could you please email

Last two weeks of term

In the last two weeks of term, the main work of teachers is to prepare and deliver classroom learning, mark assessment and write reports.  They are also preparing lessons for term two with the possibility of all students needing to access learning from home.  

Therefore, it is not possible for teachers to reply to individual requests for work to be sent home.  

Outlines of the work students are doing are on Moodle or One Note, and starting next Monday teachers will send one email a week to each class advising students where the work is located. However, we need to stress work provided online at this time will not replicate the breadth and depth of what is happening in the classroom for the remainder of the term. 

Katrina Nicholson
Assistant Principal Junior Curriculum


Agricultural Science

Year 12 Agriculture Science have been exploring different agricultural businesses in the Richmond Valley.

They have been working with beef cattle at St. Mary’s Casino, milking cows at two different dairies and learning about technology used in hydroponic production at Pocket Herbs. Also, they are testing water quality at various location along the Richmond River. Today we will look at Tea Tree production and the sustainable growing methods used at The Farm

Chris Larkin
Agricultural Science Teacher
See more Agricultural Science Camp photos

Careers and Vocational Education

Year 10 Work Experience Program

We advise that Year 10 Work Experience week which was scheduled for 15 - 19 June has been cancelled.

It may be possible to run the work experience program later in the year and we will keep parents, caregivers and students advised.  Please contact the Careers Centre if you have any queries.

Jason Hamilton
Head of Careers & Vocational Education

A reminder to Year 10 students who are yet to return their Student Portfolio to the Careers Centre, they should do so urgently.  These portfolios will be stored at school within the Careers Centre throughout students’ senior schooling and will be presented to students upon graduation.  Students have easy access to their portfolios during school hours and are permitted to take them home should the need arise (job interview, scholarships application, course entry etc). 
Any student who was absent during the program roll out and has not collected their portfolio can do so by visiting the Careers Centre.


An ADF Gap Year is a unique opportunity to experience life in the Navy, Army or Air Force, without needing to make a long-term commitment.  For further details, and to apply visit


Griffith Uni will be hosting the Griffith Aviation Flight Camp again on the Tuesday 7 and Wednesday 8 April.  The Flight Camp is an exciting two-day non-live-in camp that offers Year 11 and 12 students a unique opportunity to experience what an aviation career has to offer.  For further information and to apply, click here


The Huxley School of Makeup is opening its doors to the public on Thursday 26 March from 2.00pm-4.00pm and 5.00pm – 7.00pm at their 4/87 West Burleigh Road, Burleigh Heads location.  If you are interested in makeup and wanting a career in the makeup industry, come along and ask any and all questions you have. 

Visit Marymount College Careers Centre for further details on any of these activities.
Read more Careers Centre news on Parent Portal


Sport Report

Cancellation of all Representative School Sports

In response to the current Covid-19 situation, Queensland School Sport has decided to cancel the representative school sport program which includes district, regional, state, national, interstate and international competitions. This decision is effective as of 17 March 2020 and will continue until further advice.

AGCC Interschool Sport Competition

In response to the current Covid-19 situation, Marymount College has withdrawn from the Semester 1 competition in the AGCC Interschool Sport Competition. We will make a decision about our participation in the Semester 2 competition towards the middle of Term 2. 

For the rest of term 1 we will be running replacement lessons in place of our sport program to reduce the risk of the spread of Covid-19 in our community. Week 9 lessons (Thursday 26 March) will be Friday week B period 5 & 6 and week 10 (Thursday 2 April) will be Monday week A periods 1 & 2.

South Coast Regional Swim Carnival

On Monday the 2 March we had over 20 swimmers compete at the South Coast Regional Swimming Championships. Congratulations to the following swimmers who placed in their events:

Kai Allen 
  • 1st 50m Butterfly; 
  • 2nd 100m Freestyle, 200m IM, 400m IM; 
  • 3rd 50m Breaststroke, 100m Butterfly, 200m Freestyle
 Ashleigh Allred 
  • 2nd 200m Freestyle
  • 3rd 100m Freestyle, 400m Freestyle
Millar Brosnan-Ball 
  • 2nd 100m Freestyle
  •  3rd 50m Butterfly
Charli Greedy 
  • 1st 200m Freestyle, 100m Butterfly, 200m Butterfly 
  • 2nd 400m Freestyle
  • 3rd 50m Breaststroke
Poppy Lea 
  • 3rd 200m Breaststroke
Cooper Lynch 
  • 2nd 100m Butterfly, 200m Butterfly
  • 3rd 200m IM, 100m Freestyle
Tara Newton 
  • 2nd 200m Freestyle
  • 3rd 100m Freestyle, 400m Freestyle
Emily Noyes 
  • 1st 100m Butterfly
  • 2nd 200m Butterfly
  • 3rd 50m Butterfly
Rafey Tasker-Lawrence 
  • 1st 100m Butterfly
  • 2nd 50m Breaststroke, 100m Breaststroke, 200m IM, 200m Breaststroke
  • 3rd 50m Butterfly
Lewis Treggiden 
  • 1st 50m Freestyle (record), 100m Freestyle, 100m Backstroke, 200m Backstroke
  • 2nd 50m Backstroke
Corbin Zahn 
  • 3rd 50m Butterfly 
South Coast Representatives

Congratulations to the following students who were selected to represent the South Coast Region at the State Championships:
Kai Allen – Swimming
Ashleigh Allred – Swimming
Millar Brosnan-Ball – Swimming
Ethan Callaghan – Swimming
Charli Greedy – Swimming
Lachlan Kelly – Swimming
Poppy Lea – Swimming
Cooper Lynch – Swimming
Amy Newton – Swimming
Tara Newton – Swimming
Emily Noyes – Swimming
Rafey Tasker-Lawrence – Swimming
Lewis Treggiden – Swimming
Corbin Zahn – Swimming 

Outstanding Sporting Result
  • Abby Carroll (Year 9) achieved success at the Outrigging National Sprint Titles held at Kawana Waters earlier this year. She won gold in the U14 V1 250m (individual event) and silver in the U14 V12 250m (team event). Congratulations Abby and good luck for future events!
Student Sporting Results

Any student who achieves outstanding results in any sporting field and wants to be acknowledged in the newsletter needs to make sure they let Mr Balym know about the results. This information can be emailed directly to Mr Balym: 

Trent Balym
Sport Program Leader


2020 Next Step survey

The Queensland Government is conducting its annual statewide survey of all students who completed Year 12 in 2019.

The Next Step survey is a brief, confidential survey that gains a comprehensive picture of the employment, study and life choices made by Queensland school completers in the year after they finish Year 12.

Between March and June, all our students who completed Year 12 last year can expect to receive instructions to complete a web-based survey or a telephone call from the Queensland Government Statistician’s Office. Please encourage them to take part. If their contact details have changed, please assist the interviewer with their updated details or forward the survey to their new address so they can participate.

Thank you for your support of the Next Step survey in 2020.
Further information on Next Step is available online at or on toll free telephone 1800 068 587.


Marymount College has a partnership with Back In Motion Burleigh Waters.
They are offering anyone who mentions Marymount College $20 off their first consultation and a free initial assessment.
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