Dear families,

With the early bush fire season devastating vast areas of New South Wales and Queensland, please keep those affected in your thoughts and prayers. There will be many people suffering loss and requiring assistance over the coming months and years, but let us not forget the brave firefighters and volunteers who protect our communities, often leaving their own families and properties vulnerable to fires.


When I am called to duty, God wherever flames may rage.

Give me strength to save some life, whatever be its age.

Help me embrace a little child before it is too late.

Or save an older person from the horror of that fate.

Enable me to be alert and hear the weakest shout;

and quickly and efficiently to put the fire out.

I want to fill my calling and give the best in me

To guard my every neighbour and protect their property.

And if according to your will, in my duty I must answer death’s call,

Bless with your protective hand, my family one and all.

Author Unknown

Drought Awareness Week

In recognising those within our wider community experiencing the hardship of drought that risks ruining their livelihoods, the College is supporting the cause with bucket collections at the College gates and a Gelato Day where all proceeds were donated to Drought relief. Such generosity truly lives out our Mercy values of dignity, service and compassion.

Catherine McAuley Sculpture – Come Sit Awhile

On Monday, 11 November, the Parramatta Sisters of Mercy, together with the College community, unveiled and blessed the beautiful Catherine McAuley Sculpture by sculptor Gael O’Leary. The joint commissioning of the sculpture honoured 130 years of Mercy education in Parramatta. The Blessing ceremony involved the blending of water from the Parramatta River with water from the rill at Mercy International in Dublin, that was used to bless the sculpture. This symbolic gesture was a tangible expression of the College’s connection to global Mercy communities. Since the unveiling and blessing, Mercy Students and staff have enjoyed sitting with Catherine and I invite parents to Come Sit Awhile the next time they visit the College.

Year 12 Final Farewell

Our Year 12 students signed out of the College on the morning of Wednesday, 13 November and later that evening celebrated with their Formal at Waterview, Bicentennial Park. It was wonderful to see the students looking so relaxed and happy to be together again. They certainly enjoyed themselves, sharing a meal, dancing and catching up on news since last they met! Thank you to the staff who organised and attended the evening and who contributed to its success.

Year 7 2020 Orientation Day

The College is looking forward to welcoming our future Mercy Girls to the OLMC Community at their Orientation Day on Thursday, 28 November. It is always an enriching experience to have new members of our Mercy community and we look forward to the many contributions they will make. Welcome Year 7 2020!


By now the OLMC community will be aware that our College Principal, Mr Stephen Walsh, is taking some well-earned leave for the remainder of this year and early next year to focus on his health. I will be taking on the role of Principal (Acting) in his absence. I am sure that you will join me in wishing him all the best for his leave and we all look forward to his return in 2020. I also thank the College community in advance for the support I know that I will receive while I am in this acting role.

Save the date


Wednesday, 27 November   Carols in the Chapel
Friday, 29 November    Public Speaking Day of Excellence
Wednesday, 4 December    Celebration of Achievements Evening
Friday, 6 DecemberSchool concludes for 2019


Warm regards

Mrs Marie Wood
Principal (Acting)

Term Dates

Term 1

Students commence on Tuesday, 28 January, 2020

Students last day is Tuesday, 7 April, 2020

Term 2

Students commence Tuesday, 28 April, 2020

Students last day is Friday, 26 June, 2020 at 12.30pm

Term 3

Monday, 20 July, 2020 – Year 8. 9 and 10 Student-led Conferences 11.00am to 5.00pm.

Students commence Tuesday, 21 July 21, 2020

Students last day is Friday, 25 September, 2020

Term 4

Students commence Monday, 12 October, 2020

Students last day is Friday, 4 December, 2020 at 12.30pm




Over the course of 2019, the College has been implementing a new PDHPE syllabus in Years 7 and 9. 2020 will see full the implementation across the four year groups to include Years 8 and 10. The new PDHPE syllabus is underpinned by a focus on educative purposes. It is a strengths-based approach valuing movement, developing health literacy and will include a critical inquiry approach. The PDHPE Faculty views this as an ideal opportunity to reflect on current pedagogical practices and collaborate together in the development of new units of learning, that not only are reflective of the propositions but also meet the needs of our students at OLMC.

PDHPE is the area of the curriculum that provides opportunities for our students to learn how to lead active and healthy lifestyles. It teaches students how to enhance and positively influence their own and others’ health, safety and wellbeing. PDHPE deals with contemporary issues that directly affect and impact young people.  Currently, 65% of men and 45% of women are overweight and obese. In 1980, only 5% of children and adolescents were considered overweight and obese and this has now risen to 25%. Obese and overweight children have a 25-50% chance of becoming obese adults. The rise in obesity correlates with the rise of consumption of soft drink and other high sugary drinks. As part of our learning activities this semester in PDHPE, students have addressed the area of diet and what constitutes a well-balanced diet allowing individuals to perform at their optimum. A lively discussion took place in the classroom as students investigated some of the so-called 'popular healthy drinks.' A display was set up to demonstrate the level of sugar found in some of the popular drinks. This display brought about an element of disbelief in the findings of the level of sugars found in commonly consumed drinks.

Research suggests that overweight and obese children are at higher risk of emotional harm and that physical inactivity is a key factor in overweight and obese levels. Over the last few years, investigations have taken place around what physical activity can look like to different individuals. It has been shown that regular participation in physical activity not only improves an individual’s physical and emotional outcomes, but can lead to an enhancement in student learning. In response to the changing notion of physical fitness and supporting the proposition of valuing movement, we are providing students within our PDHPE program opportunities to offer them a range of activities to partake in. These will include recreational, cultural, leisure, competitive, non-competitive and individual and group-based physical activities. Another way that the College can facilitate a student’s physical wellbeing is within The Ailsa Mackinnon Community Centre, where a state of the art Fitness Studio is available on a weekly basis. Students from Years 9-12 can take full advantage of the facility on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings before school under the supervision of College staff. This offers OLMC students an opportunity to invest in their health and fitness, starting the day the best way they can with some exercise.

Mrs Jennifer McIntosh
Leader of Learning PDHPE

Public Speaking

Public Speaking Day of Excellence

Next week, on Friday, 29 November, the annual public Speaking Day of Excellence will take place in the Catherine McAuley rooms at the College. The all-day workshop has proven to be very popular over the years and has discovered countless champion speakers who have gone on to local, national and even international success.

Students are taken through the skills of writing and delivering a speech and by the end of the day, each participant puts these skills into practice in an enjoyable and supportive environment. All materials are supplied and morning tea and lunch are included as well. Several highly successful ex-students return to support and mentor the younger participants. All year levels are welcome.

Entries close next Monday so don’t miss out. Click here to book your daughters place. 

UN Voice State Semi-Finals

On Friday, 22 November, Alanah Issa of Year 8 will be travelling to UTS in the city to compete in the State semi-final of the UN Voice competition. To reach this level is a wonderful achievement as only a dozen or so competitors from an original entry of over a hundred are selected to advance. Alanah has chosen the topic of how to deal with the issue of “fake news” in the media and her solution really impressed the judges during the heats.

We wish Alanah the best of luck in her efforts to reach the State final in two weeks’ time.


Christmas Competition

Next week is a busy one for public speaking at the College as Years 7, 8 and 9 strive to win the Speaker of the Year shields in their respective year levels. DAPS Leaders Daphne Fong and Lily Tambrchi have challenged our girls with the topic, “If I caught Santa under my Christmas tree, I would tell him…”. The competition will take place during lunchtime in the library. Entry forms are available at the Student Centre.

Mr Christopher Ostrowski
Public Speaking Coordinator

Annual Parramatta Youth Forum

On Thursday, 31 October, 8 girls from Year 10 were selected to attend the Annual Parramatta Youth Forum at the Novotel in Parramatta. This Forum gave us the opportunity to share, reflect and develop ideas for youth, throughout Parramatta. Our group was split into two, enabling us to share our opinions with other schools. Following the acknowledgement of country and introductions, the day began with a presentation inviting students to present two possible projects, with the winning project to receive $5,000 to go towards their suggested initiative. The first project presented focussed on an initiative using green bins. Cardboard from the bins was to be collected, compressed and used to produce energy. If the group was successful, the money would be used to assess whether the cardboard could be collected without contamination from plastics and glass. The second project was to be conducted at Parramatta Library. It involved youth presenting their talents in different prospects. This allowed us to think about what talents we could present through this initiative. At the end of both presentations, students from all schools were able to vote for the winning initiative. 

These presentations were an effective way to include the youth in their aspirations for the future of Parramatta, but it didn’t stop there! After the presentations, a representative from the youth conference discussed what we had just learnt and informed us of other initiatives and groups in Parramatta Council. Representatives from these groups presented us with activities to encourage interactivity and gain an insight into how Parramatta's youth in view their marketing messages and strategies. For example, representatives from Riverside Theatre introduced a number of proposals that they believed would encourage youth involvement and participation. After critically assessing them and offering our opinions, we brainstormed the most effective strategies and what we would like to see implemented in events they organised. 

Overall, this conference allowed us to focus on future approaches to issues presented. We were forced to develop our own resolutions. It also provided us with the confidence that our ideas and opinions would be listened to.   



Veronica Chacty (Year 10)





Saturday Basketball and Volleyball

The College has had some great games over the past few weeks. The latest results are as follows:


Week 4

OLMC 1 – drew with Santa Sabina, 14-14

OLMC 2 – defeated Santa Sabina, 30-6

OLMC 3 – defeated MLC, 25-5

OLMC 4 – defeated by Monte in a friendly, 56-8

Week 5


OLMC 2 – defeated by Loreto, 20-10


OLMC 4 – defeated St Scholastica’s, 12-10


Week 4

OLMC 1 – defeated by Monte, 3 nil

OLMC 2 – defeated Loreto, 2-1

OLMC 3 – defeated St Scholastica’s, 2-1

OLMC 4 – defeated by NBCS, 3 nil

OLMC 5 – defeated by PLC Sydney, 3 nil

OLMC 6 – defeated PLC Sydney, 2-1

OLMC 7 – defeated by PLC, 3-1

OLMC 8 – defeated by Meriden, 2-1

Week 5

OLMC 1 – defeated MLC, 3 nil

OLMC 2 – defeated by Santa Sabina, 3 nil

OLMC 3 – defeated by Monte, 2-1

OLMC 4 – defeated by Santa Sabina, 3 nil

OLMC 5 – defeated by Santa Sabina, 3 nil

OLMC 6 – defeated Loreto, 3 nil

OLMC 7 – defeated by PLC Sydney, 3-1

OLMC 8 – defeated PLC Sydney, 3 nil

A reminder that all teams will keep playing each week and all teams will be involved in Finals. The last games will be on Saturday, 30 November.

Wednesday Touch Football

All Round games are now complete. Well done to all the girls on their season.


Semi-Finals will take place on Wednesday, 27 November for teams who have finished in the Top 4 in each Division. Good luck!


The Grand Final will be on Friday, 29 November if you win your Semi-Final.


You can view the draw and results here -


Mr Stuart Guthrie
Sport Coordinator



2020 OLMC Notebook Program

At OLMC, we have a robust Notebook Program that allows every student and staff member to engage with learning. It allows flexibility in learning and teaching approaches whilst also providing consistency of support and core services. 


In 2020, Year 7 and 10 will have new Dynabook X20WE models, Year 8 and 11 will have current Toshiba X20W-E and Years 9 and 12 will be utilising HP Elitebook 820 G4 clamshell touch-enabled notebooks. 


The College will maintain the current approach of servicing and supporting these devices. All devices must be used in line with our Acceptable Use Policy. 


Mr Matthew Esterman
Director of Learning Technologies and Innovation



The Library will close at 4.00pm on the following dates:

  • Monday 2/12/19
  • Tuesday 3/12/19
  • Wednesday 4/12/19

The Library will be closed after school Thursday 5/12/19 and Friday 6/12/19.


MASSH will not operate Week 8 of Term 4 – 2/12/2019 to 6/12/2019




Carols in the Chapel

P&F Meeting Dates 2020

11 February 

10 March 

5 May 

9 June 

21 July 

1 September

10 November 

From the Counsellors

Rejection is never a nice thing to be on the receiving end of - it hurts. It can make us feel sad, angry, hurt or any combination of these feelings. It can lead to negative thoughts and feelings about ourselves. It is important to allow yourself to feel all of these emotions as they are all valid. However, give yourself time to process what has happened rather than reacting immediately. Retaliating may feel good initially but it rarely makes things better and in the long run, you will likely regret what you have said or done. While you are taking some time out, surround yourself with other people who are supportive of you and take care of you. You may like to do some exercise, watch your favourite movie, spend time doing a hobby or interest, get creative or pamper yourself (massage, face mask, long bath, paint your toenails).

Moving on from rejection takes time, it is not always a linear process and can involve good days and bad days. Rejection can feel very personal and in some situations, it may be. It is important to remember when someone rejects us it is not because there is something wrong with us, rather we may just have different interests, values or goals. Try and use the experience as a learning opportunity and one where you can grow and develop resilience. Don’t let being rejected limit you in the future, focus on your strengths, interests and values and let that guide your choices.

If rejection has caused your daughter significant distress and you would like her to talk to someone about it, please contact the school and ask to be put through to a College Counsellor. Alternatively, you could seek external counselling for your daughter. A list of suitably qualified psychologists can be found at This website allows you to search for someone in your local area. You can also consult your General Practitioner for a referral.

Mrs Sandra Portela
Senior College Counsellor




We have had a busy fortnight in the Mission Team celebrating events and working hard to raise awareness, allowing for time to reflect and collect donations and money for much needed causes!

Christmas Hampers

We are continuing to collect items for the Vinnies Christmas Hampers. Donations are slowly coming in, so if you are yet to make a donation, or if you would like to bring in additional items, please bring them to the Staff Common Room for the remainder of the week.



Carols in the Chapel

When you come along to Carols in the Chapel bring some spare money as decorative pine cones will be on sale as well as tea, coffee, soft drinks and treats with all money going to Cambodia and the Drought Appeal. 

Month of Remembrance

The Chapel has been open for several lunchtimes this month to allow students and staff to take time out for quiet and personal prayer to remember loved ones who have passed away. This will continue next week. Information will be displayed on the digital screens.

Drought Week

The Mercy Action and EcOLMC girls have put in a huge amount of time to raise awareness of the devastating effects of the drought we are all living through. They have hosted lunchtime activities and have been raising money for this cause during the week. All proceeds will be donated to Drought Angels and CRA who work directly with people living on the land who are affected by loss of livelihood and income. The response to this appeal has been heartwarming and we invite you all to dig deep for our special activity on Friday morning!


Rahamim Retreat

On 25 and 26 October, a group of six young stewards from the Year 9 cohort embarked on a journey to the Rahamim Ecology Centre in Bathurst for a weekend of environmental and ethical studies. We travelled and spent time with three other Mercy schools: Catherine McAuley in Westmead, Our Lady of Mercy College in Burraneer and Mont Saint’ Angelo Mercy College in North Sydney.

When we first arrived we were welcomed by Sally, Jen and Anna who introduced us to the site and explained some of the activities we would be doing. They also explained the importance of responsible farming and eating for the earth. Rahamim serve vegetarian food with all vegetables being grown and sourced locally.

We were put straight to work, shovelling compost, drought-proofing trees surrounding the property and being introduced to the centre’s thriving worm farm. It was so gratifying to be able to leave the city and put our faith into action. This allowed us to have a tangible, meaningful impact on the environment and the gift of God’s creation. It was incredible to see the sustainable programs run by Rahamim in action, like the community produce garden, ethical beehives, the ‘Cluckingham Palace’ chicken coop and the efficient water distribution system.

The red haze of the dust storm was prominent in the air, which became reddish droplets as the rain began to come down that evening. It was apparent how much of an impact the drought has had on this community. After singing and reflecting around the fire, we headed to the convent at Perthville where we stayed the night and enjoyed a few spirited rounds of Mrs Scanlon’s classic “Minute To Win it.”

We woke up early on Saturday morning to rain pouring down. After an early breakfast, we made our way back to Rahamim. We started the morning with body prayer, which was an opportunity to reflect and be thankful for ourselves, nature and the past, present and future. Juliet then spoke to us about fast fashion, and the effects it has on the environment and the people who make our clothes.

The two-day Retreat was an experience to remember, and each of us vowed to put what we had learnt into practice, to serve the environment and be stewards in both the College and the wider community.

Alyssa Dib, Charlotte Edwards, Sarah D’Souza, Tara Nann, Samantha Emeish and Mikayla Simpson (Year 9)



Lids 4 Kids

The collection of lids has continued with great success. We have a surplus of lids now so the collection has stopped until early next year. Thank you to all the girls who have donated, washed and sorted lids. We have made a great impact to help reduce landfill and also repurpose this plastic.



Mercy Futures

World Kindness Day was the perfect time to join for the final time as the Mercy Futures group for 2019. Thank you to Anya Maclure who represented the College at this event. We heard wonderful speakers from three different world religions talk about the way that kindness and compassion are expressed in their faith traditions.

Carmen Lalehzari (Baha’i), Aicha Elmir (Islam) and Shubha Kumar (Hindu) all provided valuable insights into their faith and expression of it in their lives.

It has been truly heartwarming to see the way that our College community has come together to raise awareness and such needed funds this Term. It is a credit to all of the parents and staff who are working hard to raise socially aware girls who are happy to educate others on matters of justice.

Have a happy and healthy week ahead

Mrs Gabby Scanlon
Director of Mission (Acting)


Year 12, 2012 Graduation

Jaimee Abraham

What is your Leadership Portfolio?

McAuley House Leader

What are the key responsibilities of your Portfolio?

Making sure the girls are in a supportive and fun environment where they feel they can express themselves anywhere in their lives and of course...lead McAuley to victory!

What is your vision as Leader of this Portfolio in 2019/2020?

As a McAuley House leader, my vision for my House is to make sure all girls feel they are connected to a big family that has so much history and one that has so much history to be made. I want to make sure the girls in McAuley feel they have a place in this school and to carry that on throughout their lives after they graduate. I want to ensure the girls know they are loved and know how important they are. I wish to continue McAuley Spirit in the House and throughout the school, by mixing together homerooms and becoming more connected to our Sister House, Doyle in homeroom time, Mercy Days and sports carnivals. By doing this, it will open up the girls to potential connections they can form with other sisters and increase their self-confidence.



River City Voices - Handel's Messiah