As we enter Term 2 of the 2020 school year, I would like to recognise and thank all Principals, school leadership teams, teachers and support staff for embracing this period of profound change. The way in which Loreto schools have successfully transitioned to online learning in such a brief period of time is a truly remarkable achievement.
I would like to warmly welcome back Judith Potter, Principal of Loreto Ballarat. Judith will continue to lead the school throughout Term 2 and will retire at the end of the term. Judith’s 14¼ years of service to Loreto demonstrates a true commitment to the education of young women and a genuine devotion to the students, staff and parents whom she has led. We look forward to celebrating Judith’s outstanding leadership of, and her significant contribution to, the Loreto Ballarat community when gatherings of large numbers of people are once again possible.
Mrs Michelle Brodrick will commence as Principal of Loreto Ballarat in Term 3. Michelle comes to Loreto Ballarat from St Joseph’s College, Geelong where she is currently the Deputy Principal. Michelle has extensive educational leadership experience and a strong background in teaching, learning and wellbeing. Together with the Loreto Ballarat community, we look forward to welcoming Michelle to the role.
We welcome Mrs Rika Andres as Principal of Loreto Nedlands. Rika has come to Nedlands from St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School, Southern Cross, where she served as Principal. COVID-19 has ensured that Rika will commence her Principalship in ways she never could have expected, however she has already demonstrated her readiness for the challenges ahead, particularly in galvanising the commitment, creativity and skill of the Nedlands’ staff. I extend the support and encouragement of all of us at Loreto Ministries and the wider Loreto network as Rika navigates the days and weeks ahead.
Across the globe to Loreto Vietnam, school closures have been in place since the end of January. There have been minimal cases of COVID-19 throughout Vietnam and schools will begin to re-open over the coming weeks. The Loreto Vietnam staff commenced back at the office on Monday 27th April, pleased to be able to see each other in person. They continue to support the projects, children and communities they are dedicated to in a spirit of great strength and determination. This is a very delicate time for Loreto Vietnam, maintaining balance and stability in between closure and returning to work and school can prove most challenging. Please keep our Loreto Vietnam family in your thoughts and prayers.
Loreto Ministries has commenced the distribution of a Newsletter for schools that includes information and updates to support all staff throughout this uncertain and fluid period. The intention of the newsletter is to draw attention to the most recent government initiatives and support mechanisms, and to highlight resources which are available across the various states and territories. We trust these ongoing communications will assist in managing the current situation.
Pope Francis recently spoke about a plan for the rising up again of humanity. He suggests that what we are experiencing today mirrors the disciples after the death and resurrection of Jesus as they were surrounded by an atmosphere of pain and uncertainty. Many people today including teachers, nurses, doctors, supermarket workers, cleaners, caretakers and many others are not overcome with anxiety and suffering but are standing with and beside others. Pope Francis reminds us that the current crisis is a time to be open to the Spirit, who can ‘inspire us with a new imagination of what is possible’. We are united with the entire, connected human family in our collective endeavours. In this Loreto year of Verity, let us continue to remain unified and strengthened by our faith and one another.