Marie Wood, Deputy Principal

Dear Families

As you are aware the air quality and smoke haze over Sydney has been extreme and intense today,  affecting staff and students at the College. The Department of Planning, Industry and Environment have forecasted more intense conditions for tomorrow with a “red warning” being issued for the Sydney region. A red warning directs us to limit any exposure to outdoor activities. For this reason, the College has decided not to transport the students to Picnic Day at Clontarf on Thursday 5 December, tomorrow.

We understand that parents will make an informed decision in the best interest of their daughter(s), and the College will provide activities and supervision for the duration of the school day if the decision is made for students to attend school.

Students who are attending school tomorrow are reminded to bring their own picnic lunch as the Canteen will not be open. The final College Liturgy and House Assemblies will take place as planned on Friday. Students will finish at midday on this day as previously communicated.

With our Mercy Pilgrimage leaving today and the Cambodian Immersion trip leaving Saturday, I thought it appropriate to offer this prayer for the safe travels of all in our community during the upcoming school break.

 O God, our heavenly Father, whose glory fills the whole creation, and whose presence we find wherever we go: preserve those who travel; surround them with your loving care; protect them from every danger; and bring them in safety to their journey's end; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

It has certainly been a busy end to the school year with many activities taking place at the College.

The community came together last Wednesday evening for Carols in the Chapel. Students and their families joined Sisters of Mercy and staff as Mercy musicians and singers performed beautiful renditions of Christmas carols. The amazing acoustics of the Mother Mary Clare Dunphy Chapel always provides an ideal meeting space for all to rejoice as another year draws to a close. It also provides an opportunity to reflect on the true spirit of Christmas as a time of faith and hope that comes with the birth of Jesus as Saviour.

The College held its Year 7 2020 Orientation Day last Thursday where we welcomed over 200 students as future Mercy Girls. It was wonderful to see so many smiling faces eager to join us and being welcomed so warmly by our student leaders, Year 9 students and College staff. May this be the beginning of a rich relationship forged with our new Year 7 students and their families.

On Friday, 29 November, over 80 current and future Mercy Girls attended the Public Speaking Day of Excellence, mentored by ex-students who excelled in public speaking during their time at the College. A huge thank you to Mr Chris Ostrowski for his facilitation of the day, to the College staff who assisted and to the many students, both current and ex-students, who came along to support the program.

Today, we farewelled students and staff on their Mercy Pilgrimage. The group will visit places of Mercy in Ireland, United Kingdom and Italy. The group will have many rewarding experiences not only from the places and people they will visit - including Mercy International in Dublin and Pope Francis in Rome - but also from the opportunity to share this experience!

Significantly, tonight the College will acknowledge students during our annual Celebration of Achievement Evening. I look forward to you joining us in celebrating the wonderful achievements of our students in 2019 and reflecting on 130 years of Mercy education in Parramatta.

This Saturday, students and staff, including myself, set off on the Cambodian Immersion trip. Through the many fundraising efforts of the students, we aim to participate in humanitarian projects including providing housing, food, equipment and fresh water to those in need.

Both the Cambodian Immersion and the Mercy Pilgrimage will be reflecting on their experiences at a College Assembly early in Term 1, 2020.

Things to Note

  • A reminder that school concludes for 2019 on Friday, 6 December with an end of year Liturgy. Students will be dismissed at 12 noon.
  • The revised Mobile Phone Policy will be communicated to staff, students and parents at the beginning of 2020. Please check our website from next week for this Policy.
  • An exciting opportunity has emerged for the College to explore a partnership with Western Sydney University. What this may mean is that this could include the use of the university's sporting fields and other facilities. An information evening outlining this opportunity will be held in Term 1, 2020. 

I wish everyone a very happy, holy and safe Christmas and look forward to seeing everyone back refreshed and ready to learn in 2020!

Warm regards and the blessings of Christmas to you all,

Mrs Marie Wood
Principal (Acting)




Ria Iyer (Year 9) had the opportunity to write a poem for a charity event supporting Bravehearts, a children’s charity organisation. Her poem was published at this event in their memoir and she was given the opportunity to read it to the audience. Alison Geale, CEO of Bravehearts, who attended the event commended Ria on her thoughtful poem that reflects the mission and purpose of the organisation that promotes the safety and protection of all children.

I walk back home, with precaution and care,

I walk back home, the wind blowing in my hair

I sense eyes all around me, as I take each step,

‘This doesn’t seem right,’ I said to myself

I have the right to walk happily, each step I take,

I have the right to be free, each minute of each day

To be able to walk proudly, with my head held high,

To wave at my friends as I see them walk by

I want to walk down the street with the sun shining bright,

Looking up at the sky and seeing birds flying high

Then I finally get home, with my smile spread wide,

I made it home happily, safely and on time

Home; where my family will always be there,

I can them anything and they will listen with care

And at night I think about today’s knowledge I have gained

After all you can’t make a rainbow without a little sunshine and rain

By Ria Iyer




HSC Results

17 December - 6.00 am: HSC results will be delivered to students via email and text.

17 December - 8.00 am: HSC Inquiry Centre open. Phone: 1300 138 323

Enter student number and PIN and follow the prompts. Remember your NESA number and Students Online PIN are different from your University Admissions Centre (UAC) number and PIN. If you wish to opt-out of receiving your results by email or SMS, go to NSW Students Online, My Details. You will also be able to access your results that day via NSW Students Online and download your NESA credentials as a free PDF. Your HSC credentials will include a HSC Testamur, Record of Achievement detailing your Year 12, 11 and 10 results, and personalised course reports for relevant HSC courses. After downloading, remember to save or print your credentials as your NSW Students Online account will only remain open until 30 June, 2020.

Year 12 Parent Guide from UAC

With the HSC exams coming to an end, you may be wondering how to best help your son or daughter with their transition into higher education. November can be a busy time for students who have applied for Schools Recommendation Schemes or Educational Access Schemes, so we have compiled a list of dates to help you keep your child on track.

STEM Girls @ Sydney, University of Sydney

20-21 January 2020

This exciting two-day workshop on campus is for female high school students who want to explore the disciplines and careers available in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) and how you can apply these skills in everyday life. If you are entering Year 11 in 2020, register now at

Show more

Inclusive Learning

Let’s celebrate International Day of People with Disability

Today, 4.3 million Australians live with some form of disability. That’s one in five people.

International Day of People with Disability, held on 3 December, is a United Nations sanctioned day that celebrates progress in breaking down barriers, opening doors and realising an inclusive society for everyone.

This is an opportunity for schools to promote an understanding of the issues experienced by people with disability and celebrate their achievements.

Get involved

School communities can show their support by organising an event for International Day of People with Disability.

Your event could be anything from an art class to a sausage sizzle, or an inclusive sporting event — and it doesn’t have to be on 3 December.

The International Day of People with Disability website is a great place to start for event ideas and to get help with planning. You will find information and teaching resources to help you mark the day, such as lesson ideas, promotional products, posters and social media banners.

Schools holding an event can also help grow inclusion in their communities by entering the International Day of People with Disability Grow Inclusion Schools Competition.

The winning school will receive $3,000 in accessible resources and materials for its students, while helping to break down barriers, promote respect and create a more inclusive society for everyone.

Entering the competition is as simple as holding a registered event and posting a photo or video of the activity on the school Facebook page to help spread the word.

We encourage your school to take part — let’s grow inclusion in our community. For more information visit the International Day of People with Disability website.

You can also visit the International Day of People with Disability Facebook and Twitter pages.

Ms Marisa Zadro
Leader of Inclusive Learning

Public Speaking

The year might be coming to an end but public speaking at OLMC continues as strong as ever. Over the last two weeks, no fewer than six activities gave our students the opportunity to shine.

Open Morning Tours

The final Open Morning Tour saw two of our outstanding Year 7 speakers, Tia Monga and Summer Rayne Roughley, once again impress our visitors with their professional delivery and their welcoming manner. Tia and Summer Rayne, along with Laurice Behan and Maddison Starkey, have proven to be wonderful ambassadors for the College throughout the year. The number of positive comments from parents and OLMC staff alike are testament to the exceptional ability of our public speakers. In the Year of Service, all four girls epitomize what the Mercy value of Service is. Thank you to all of them.


UN Voice Competition

In an exceptional achievement, Alanah Issa of Year 8 has reached the State Final of the UN Voice competition. Alanah is now among the elite speakers in this competition as only ten of over 200 entrants attain this level of success. Alanah’s performance in the semi-final deserves praise not only because of her own outstanding delivery but because the opposition she faced was formidable. All speakers were excellent and having to wait two days for results to be announced was quite nerve-racking.

Alanah now advances to the State Final at Government House on Monday, 9 December. Further challenges await for the top five place getters: a position in the NSW team to compete at the National Final next Easter. We wish Alanah all the best for next Monday.


Christmas Competition

Although numbers were down from previous years, this year’s Christmas Competition still proved to be of very high quality. Years 7, 8 and 9 have separate competitions, all being held at separate lunchtimes last week in the Library. The winners in each Year level were as follows:

Year 7: Lily Moujalli

Year 8: Ainslie McNally

Year 9: Maeve Nolan

Thank you to our DAPS leaders, Daphne Fong and Lily Tambrchi, for organising the event and to Mrs Melissa Riley for adjudicating along with Daphne and Lily. The three winning girls will now have their names engraved on the respective Speaker of the Year shields for their respective year levels.


Public Speaking Day of Excellence

Possibly the biggest day on our public speaking calendar is the end-of-year workshop that prepares our girls for the year ahead. As always, over seventy enthusiastic students attended, including many Year 6 students who will become Mercy Girls next year. The day unearthed many new students whose talent promises to keep our successes rolling into 2020.

Special mention must go to our four Year 7 girls who have become such an integral part of public speaking at OLMC. Laurice Behan and Maddison Starkey gave a brilliant 15-minute presentation on how to deliver a speech with style, Summer Rayne Roughley delivered an outstanding speech which provided an excellent model for her listeners while Tia Monga gave an excellent speech on the benefits of entering public speaking competitions. These girls are truly an inspiration to others.

The day could not be successful without the input of many other OLMC students, both past and present. Several ex-students gave up their time to come in and help as group leaders and mentors. Thank you to Anita Donovan, Amishi Handoo, Imogen King, Andrea Kozera and Gabrielle Mizzi. Each of these girls was an outstanding speaker in past years and sharing the wisdom of their experience was a significant contribution on the day. Unfortunately, Anita Venkatesh was unwell and couldn’t attend but Anita has contributed in the past and we hope to see her next year. Our current DAPS leaders, Daphne and Lily, were also indispensable in so many ways. They were not only group leaders and mentors but were ready at a moment’s notice to organise whatever needed to be organised. Apart from these wonderful girls, a big thank you to all the OLMC students who were willing to help at a moment’s notice whenever it was required.

It is also important to mention others whose support is essential in such an activity. Thank you to Ms Bujnowski, Mrs Portelli and Ms Rowan who took time out of their teaching duties to contribute in so many ways, to the endlessly patient ladies in the Student Centre and others in the College administration who spent so much time and effort supporting the program. The behind-the-scenes work done by so many people is very much appreciated.

On a final note, thank you to all who have ensured the success of public speaking at OLMC: the College Administration, the teachers and support staff, the families of our speakers but above all, over 130 of our wonderful students whose talent and enthusiasm have made 2019 our most successful year ever.

Mr Christopher Ostrowski
Public Speaking Coordinator



Sport Photos

Just a reminder that you can view and purchase action shots from for the following 2019 sports:

OLMC Swimming Carnival

  • OLMC Athletics Carnival
  • Saturday Volleyball & Basketball
  • Saturday Netball
  • CGSSSA Tennis
  • CGSSSA Volleyball
  • CGSSSA Dance

An email has been sent to all students with our password.

Merry Christmas

2019 is coming to a close, but that does not mean that Sport has finished yet. Students are still competing and producing fantastic results. 

I want to thank all the students, parents, friends and families who have supported numerous sports throughout 2019. It was wonderful to see so many girls competing, having fun, doing their best and enjoying sport. I look forward to working with you again in 2020.

Physical Culture

Congratulations to Holly Walker who achieved 3rd place at the Physi NSW Grand Finals on Sunday, 24 November!



Congratulations to Catherine Yue who competed at the 2019 Schoolgirls Junior Tennis Tournament. Catherine was victorious in the Year 10 girls' consolation final, despite only being in year 8!

The OLMC lunchtime tennis event has now finished. Congratulations to Catherine Yue who won the Junior Division and to Angelene Lu who won the Intermediate division.



Good luck to Summer Giddings as she competes at the Australian All Schools Athletics Championships in Perth from 6-8 December.


Best of Luck to Annabelle Ruskin who is currently competing over in Spain as part of the Australian Women’s Youth Futsal Team.


In 2020, the NSWCCC will be introducing a new website. A new information sheet will be sent out to help with all registrations. Students who have previously registered with NSWCCC will receive an email outlining the changes with registrations.

Saturday Basketball and Volleyball

The Santa Sabina Volleyball & Basketball concluded on the weekend. We had a number of amazing matches and wonderful achievements. Here are the latest results:


Week 6

OLMC 1 – defeated Rosebank, 14-12

OLMC 2 – defeated OLMC 3, 51-20

OLMC 4 – were defeated by MLC, 50-8

Week 7

OLMC 1 – defeated Loreto, 25-14

OLMC 2 – defeated Monte, 22-17

OLMC 3 – were defeated by Loreto

OLMC 4 – were defeated by St Scholastica, 14-12

Final Placings

OLMC 1 (Open Div 2A) –  5th    

OLMC 2 (Inter Div 2B) -  3rd    

OLMC 3 (Inter Div 2B) -  5th  

OLMC 4 (Yr 7) - 4th  



Week 6

OLMC 1 – defeated Loreto, 2-1

OLMC 2 – were defeated be Brigidine, 3-1

OLMC 3 – were defeated by Rosebank, 3-1

OLMC 4 – defeated MLC, 3 nil

OLMC 5 – were defeated by Brigidine, 3 nil

OLMC 6 – defeated St Scholastica’s, 3 nil

OLMC 7 – defeated PLC Sydney, 2-1

OLMC 8 – were defeated by Sydney Girls, 3 nil

Week 7

OLMC 1 – defeated Loreto, 3 nil

OLMC 2 – drew with St Scholastica’s, 2 all

OLMC 3 – defeated Meriden, 2-2 (won on points)

OLMC 4 – were defeated by PLC Sydney, 3 nil

OLMC 5 – were defeated by Monte, 3 nil

OLMC 6 – were defeated by St Vincent’s, 3 nil


OLMC 8 – were defeated by PLC, 3 nil

Final Placings

OLMC 1 – (Open Div 2) 9th  

OLMC 2 – (Open Div 2) 7th  

OLMC 3 – (Yr 10 Div 2) 3rd    

OLMC 4 – (Yr 9 Div 2) 18th  

OLMC 5 – (Yr 8 Div 1) 8th  

OLMC 6 – (Yr 8 Div 2) 2nd  

OLMC 7 – (Yr 8 Div 2) 17th 

OLMC 8 – (Yr 8 Div 2) 8th 

Well done to all the girls that competed and thank you to all the families and friends that came to support the teams.

Wednesday Touch Football

Parramatta Junior Touch Football has now concluded. The Grand Final was held on Friday, 29 November. Well done to OLMC 5 finishing Runners up in 15 Years Div 2 and to OLMC 2 who finished Runners Up in 17 Years Div 2. They were defeated by OLMC 1 who were the 17 Years Div 2 Champions!.

Well done to all the girls for a great season!

You can view all the results here -

Mr Stuart Guthrie
Sport Coordinator



Catherine McAuley Library

The Catherine McAuley Library will be closed after school on Thursday 5 December and Friday 6 December 2019.

Amelie-Aiko Loof

What is your Leadership Portfolio?

Liturgy Leader

What are the key responsibilities of your Portfolio?

Organising prayer for Assemblies and liturgy services on Friday mornings.

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

I hope to strengthen the spiritual life of the College by creating an environment where everyone feels safe and open to talk about their faith. I am working closely with the Mission Team to help bring justice and honour to the world through the value of God's name.





We have embarked on the season of Advent which commences four weeks prior to Christmas. This is a time for waiting and preparing. The prayer below is a lovely Advent prayer.

Dear Jesus

You are the hope in our messy world.
This Advent, help us to slow down, listen to your voice, and focus on what is really important.
We place our hope in you as we prepare our hearts to celebrate your birth on Christmas.


Vinnies Hampers

Thank you to the College community for your generosity in providing goods for the Vinnies Christmas Hampers. We prepared 20 hampers which will be distributed to families in need within our local area.

Drought Relief

Thank you all so much for the tremendous response to our Drought Relief Appeal. We raised almost $2,000. We have donated $500 to Catholic Religious Australia (assists vulnerable people in society) and will donate the balance to Drought Angels.


Cambodia Trip

Thank you to the College Community who have so generously donated and supported the fundraising efforts of the 2019 Cambodia Trip. We are all packed and ready to go on Saturday morning. The girls will be accompanied by myself, Mrs Wood, Mrs Johnston and Mrs Kemmis. We will be completing several service activities including building two houses. We look forward to sharing our adventures with you upon our return.

I would like to wish all the students and families a very happy and holy Christmas. May this special time of year provide an opportunity to stop and celebrate with your loved ones. Have a safe holiday period and I look forward to seeing you next year in 2020 for another terrific year.

God bless

Mrs Gabby Scanlon
Director of Mission

Study Samurai Library

Click here for tips on how to prepare for the year ahead.

From the Counsellors

How to access help during the holidays

As the school year draws to a close and festivities begin, it is important to note that not everyone finds this time of the year the easiest. There are often high expectations placed on us to see family and friends, enjoy one another’s company, share a meal, exchange gifts, laughter and merriment. The reality is often nothing like this and the higher your expectations the more disappointment you might feel. For some, spending time with family can re-open old wounds, for others it is a reminder of those no longer with us to celebrate. Some will find that they feel an overwhelming sense of loneliness and isolation despite being surrounded by loved ones, possibly leading to low moods and/or anxiety about why they feel this way.

If the holidays are a time of stress or distress for you or a loved one, please reach out and get some support. This can be informal support through family and friends, or more formal support via a counsellor or a crisis helpline.

If you would like to access a counsellor, often the best place to start is with a trip to your General Practitioner who may provide you with a mental health plan allowing you to access a psychologist for a number of sessions at a subsidised rate.

Crisis helplines provide free, confidential support, usually 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Phone: 13 11 14

Kids Helpline:
Phone: 1800 551 800
A service for anyone from 5-25 years of age

The College Counsellors wish you and your families a safe, healthy and restful break and look forward to supporting your daughters in 2020.

Mrs Sandra Portela
Senior College Counsellor