Bright future for all

Upon first glance of St Joseph's Primary School, Taree, you're likely to be taken aback by its picturesque settings. It's hard to look past the well-manicured grounds that are surrounded by hectares of bushland, but there's much more to the school than first meets the eye.

Earlier this year the school welcomed in a new principal, Frank Jones, and a new assistant principal, Bronwyn Underwood. Combined, they have over 50 years of experience as educators, and both have held principal positions for the past decade.

Mr Jones and Ms Underwood's appointment signals a new era for the school, which has a long and proud history in the local community.

Mr Jones said that he feels honoured to be in a position where he can continue to build on that tradition.

"My welcome to St Joseph's has been exceptional," he said. "The staff, students and their families have been very kind."

"I have a responsibility to them to continue to build a culture of high expectation at the school and to ensure St Joseph's learning environments are challenging, pastoral, relevant, and rewarding. "

Accordingly, it's not just leadership at the school that's turned a new leaf.

The school's library is currently under refurbishment, there's been a significant investment in technology and STEM resources, and very soon it will welcome St Nicholas OOSH, meaning families can access out of hours school care onsite. 

Reflecting on the vast array of changes, Mr Jones was optimistic about their impact on the school community.

"We are no different from any other organisation in that a complete change of leadership provides the opportunity to stop and reflect upon what we do and how we do it. Over the past two terms Ms Underwood and I have worked with staff to identify and commit to our Professional Learning Community's shared purpose, which is to educate all students to the best of our ability to ensure they realise the best of theirs," Mr Jones said. 

With this shared purpose at the forefront, the school recently finetuned its Mission, which is 'To do what it takes to serve each of our learners through quality and Christ-centric education.'

"With an incredibly dedicated and talented staff such as ours, then we are sure to achieve our vision of consistently developing students with the characteristics of Christian living, loving, and learning for life," Mr Jones said.

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Lizzie Snedden Image
Lizzie Snedden

Lizzie is Team Leader Content for the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle.