Newsletter - Edition 19-2016

News from the Principal

Dear members of the Genazzano FCJ College Community,

It is a sign of how busy our contemporary lives have become that December has crept up all too quickly and we all know what this means - that the conclusion of our academic year is just around the corner! In its corridors, classrooms and open spaces, the College has been even more abuzz in the last couple of weeks with student orientation days and the new academic induction program for our girls undertaking Years 9 to 12. Our senior girls have embraced the opportunity to begin their 2017 program with enthusiasm, attentiveness and dedication. This genuine start to exploring their new subjects for next year will, therefore, assist the girls in being a step ahead when beginning their studies in 2017. The extended induction period has encouraged students to remain focused for the last couple of weeks of the year, which is important given that they have such a long summer holiday. To ensure that students going into Years 10 to 12 begin the year with confidence, prepared work will be available over the summer holidays.

Our Year 8 girls have enjoyed the Year 9 induction program this week and have enthusiastically embraced the different learning activities. They have received and explored the contents of our new Year 9 Program booklet and Indigenous Immersion brochure for 2017. Copies of these will be placed on our College website so parents/guardians and students can see the exciting developments taking place in our Year 9 program.

In addition to this, all students from ELC to Year 7 have been involved in an orientation/induction program to get them ready for the year ahead. The transition committee began working on these programs in Term 2 so there was a well-planned program to meet the various needs of each year level. The transition team is also keen to review the orientation/induction program at the end of the year, so should you have any feedback, I encourage you to forward your ideas, suggestions and feedback to our team leaders.

The rich variety of activities and events I have experienced in my first year as Principal has provided me with much food for thought. It has been an enriching year as I have viewed and experienced with much interest and enthusiasm the extensive learning and co-curricular programs of the Genazzano FCJ College. I have had the opportunity to see first-hand the strengths of the College and determine where the College can explore further opportunities to add value to our learning programs.

Without a doubt, Genazzano is an exceptional learning community with a rich culture of learning - one that encourages and expects excellence, dedication and commitment from all members, staff and students of our College. Gen girls get swept up in an outstanding learning community that encourages all of them to reach their full potential. Our students are encouraged to be true to themselves, find their own personal interests and passions, and improve all aspects of their learning as they grow into articulate young women, who can be the leaders in their chosen fields in the future. It is a holistic education that develops students’ intellectual, spiritual, emotional, social, physical, artistic and creative capabilities.

Our teaching staff have been professionally challenged during our Monday afternoon meetings sessions, working in Professional Learning Teams (PLTs) to understand in greater depth the learning needs of all students in their classrooms. To do this, they have been using a variety of diagnostic tools and student learning data to further understand the students learning needs in implementing a purposeful program in line with the new Victorian Curriculum, which will allow all students in the classroom to grow at the optimal level of development, known as the ‘zone of proximal development.’ Our aim is to ensure all students, no matter what level, have measurable learning growth and are supported in a positive and encouraging environment. I believe that we can continue to improve our learning program by providing our teachers the opportunity to work closely together, to analyse student learning data and plan purposeful, interesting and engaging curriculum that aids in the personal and intellectual growth of each Gen girl. I am looking forward to the last few weeks of the year, where I will work with teachers and leaders to evaluate the year and plan for next year.

As a Catholic school in the FCJ tradition, Gen continually aims to be true to the educational vision of Marie Madeleine d’Houet, providing an excellent and comprehensive education to each girl, and in doing so be supportive and encouraging of whatever gifts each student possesses. To that end, each student is supported in her particular learning strengths and requirements and is helped to grow at her own stage of development. Genazzano is not a select entry school and welcomes all types of learners. As with any learning community, there are a number of staffing and structural changes the College is putting in place for the new academic year. As Principal, I want to assure every family that the delivery of learning programs, within and beyond the classroom, will continue to robustly support the holistic vision of education for which this College is so rightly renowned. All our College academic programs and staff will continue to provide the learning enhancement that our students require to reach their full potential. The learning environment of Genazzano seeks to support all students in their learning, and provide support to any student who may experience particular challenges in her learning or need further extension, so she can be the best learner she can be. I remain fully committed to this tradition and vision.

The season of Advent began on Sunday and as we prepare to celebrate the coming of our Lord. In the spirit of our College theme for 2016, Fidelity and Joy in the Year of Mercy, may we use this time of waiting and contemplation to pray for mercy. Jesus was born into this world to show us how we can be merciful to others. May the message of Jesus’ life live with us each day, knowing that God’s love dwells within us, giving us courage that we too can bring mercy to our world. “What does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God?” Micah 6:8

With every blessing,

Karen Jebb


Faith and Mission News

One of my favourite verses from the Hebrew Scriptures is ‘Be still, and know that I am God!’ (Psalm 46:10). It is particularly relevant during Advent when looking forward to the joy of Christmas, but at the same time often feeling overwhelmed by everything that is Christmas.

At Genazzano, we often take the time to be still. We pray at the start of each day in Homeroom, we pray whenever staff gather and we pray on special occasions during our school year. We pray because taking the time to be still and know that God is with us makes the whole experience of the day or the meeting or the occasion more significant.

‘God with us’ is, of course, the fundament of Advent – we recognise in a special way that God became human in Jesus. We celebrate this mystery every time we gather as people of faith.

Last week, our Year 9 students celebrated a beautiful Echarist at All Hallows, led by Fr Brendan Reed. We look forward to celebrating the end of year Eucharist for students on Tuesday 6 December in Centenary Hall. We then gather as a school community for the Carols by Twilight evening that night.

May the blessings of Christmas be with all the families of the Genazzano FCJ College community, now and always.

We pray for Leszek Zembrzuski who passed away recently, Grandfather of Natalie Montagner (Year 8) and Katherine Montagner (Year 4).

We pray for the Sisters, Faithful Companions of Jesus in their various ministries throughout the world.

Bill Fitzsimons
Deputy Principal: Faith and Mission


God of hope,
As we prepare for Christmas, may we take the time to open our hearts to others. We promise to listen and wait patiently. We pray that all people will have enough food to eat this Christmas.

Jesus, Prince of peace,
Help us to be peaceful people at school and at home by using kind words and treating everybody with care and respect. We pray for all people around the world that they can live in peace. We give thanks for all people who are helping others in need.

God of joy,
You sent your Son Jesus to bring good news to people who are poor. Help us to be that good news, and work together with our neighbours around the world for a life that is fair for all families.

Loving God,
We are all part of your one global human family. May we show our love with small gestures as we seek to build a better world. We look forward in hope to celebrating the birth of your son Jesus – the Prince of peace - a sign of your love for each and every one of us. May we love one another as you have loved us.



Curriculum, Standards and Innovation News

End of Semester Reports

Parents of students in Year 5 to 11 will be able to log into GenSpace and access their daughter’s report after 10.00am on Thursday 15 December. As per usual, all reports will be accessible in PDF format and can be saved or printed as required. Each student’s report will be archived on the College network as well as being available to parents whilst their daughter is studying at the College.

Parents of students in Prep to Year 4 will receive the report in PDF format via email, and can be saved or printed as required. The College will archive this report on our network so it can be accessed easily in future years. This transition to an e-copy report is aligned with our sustainability policy, which seeks to reduce our carbon footprint and therefore reduce the use of paper.

Robert Tassoni
Deputy Principal: Curriculum, Standards and Innovation


Student Learning and Wellbeing News

Student Wellbeing Hub

It is an unfortunate reality in our daily lives that families find themselves in a world, which often poses a range of threats to their children - threats to their personal safety and threats to the very values we seek. In such a world, staying alert to these dangers is a pressing duty for loving parents and guardians.

Following my article in previous College newsletters concerning safe schools, I wish to draw your attention to an excellent and accessible resource that can assist parents (and students) to ensure the wellbeing and safety of our young people.

The Australian Government Department of Education and Training has recently launched the ‘Student Wellbeing Hub’ as a valuable online resource for teachers, parents and students. This online resource provides important and helpful information on a range of student resilience and wellbeing topics (e.g. wellbeing and online safety) along with classroom resources and interactive tools. I include a couple of screen captures from the parents’ page to give you a quick idea of what this valuable resource covers:


This online resource is guided by the nine elements of the National Safe Schools Framework and has identified wellbeing and online safety as key priorities for educators in the creation and maintenance of safe and supportive school communities. The nine elements of the National Safe Schools Framework are:

  1. Leadership commitment to a safe school
  2. A supportive and connected school culture
  3. Policies and procedures
  4. Professional learning
  5. Positive behaviour management
  6. Engagement, skill development and safe school curriculum
  7. A focus on student wellbeing and student ownership
  8. Early intervention and targeted support
  9. Partnerships with families and community

An excellent document explaining the above can be found on their website.

I take the opportunity to wish you all the joys and blessings of the coming festive season. Our church celebrated the First Sunday of Advent last week. In the Gospel Reading from Matthew 24, we listened to the words of Jesus when he urged his disciples to ‘stay awake’ and watch for the signs of the coming of the Son of Man. The readings and rituals of Advent draw us into reflecting on the presence of our God in our lives. As Faithful Companions of Jesus, may we see and experience his face, presence and touch in our hearts, and in our cherished relationships with our families, friends and colleagues. May that gentle reflective spirit engendered in Advent keep us awake to the reality of the incarnation of God in our lives.

Lila McInerney
Deputy Principal, Student 
Learning and Wellbeing


News from Early Years

What a marvellous event our Prep to Year 4 Swimming Carnival was on Friday 25 November. It was fantastic to see all the girls try their best in their various heats using a variety of swimming styles. A big thank you to Mr Adrian Daly and Ms Andi Smith for coordinating the event, and to all the parents who came to watch and support their daughters.

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Prep to Year 4 Final Assembly

The Year 4 students scripted and produced a Nativity Play that was very meaningful for all who attended the Assembly. Their beautiful retelling of the story of the Nativity was stunning and a fantastic way to explore the true meaning of the First Christmas. During Assembly, we also welcomed Ms Eliza Freeman our 2017 Prep to Year 8 Prefect, as well as awarding all the Year 4 girls with a special pin to acknowledge their time at Grange Hill. Assembly was also an opportunity to hear the magnificent Madeleine Strings perform, and hear how well the Year 1 Instrumental Program students have progressed with their string instruments in a very short space of time. It was also delightful to see so many of our Grange Hill students receive awards for their Royal Melbourne Show artwork.

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With the end of term fast approaching, all the Grange Hill staff wish all our students and their families a very happy and blessed Christmas and we look forward to seeing you all in 2017.

Jackie Horgan
Director of Early Years


News from Middle Years


For our Drama unit, we read the book called ‘The Red Butterfly’, a legend of how the secret of silk left China. At that time, China was the first to discover how to weave silk from the cocoons of silk worms – and this was discovered by accident! Year 5 students are raising silkworms because we are producing a play in class about a Chinese princess who smuggled silkworms out of China, and into the kingdom of Khotan, because her father promised her in marriage to another king. We have been observing live silkworms and their growth.

We obtained the silkworms from a business in Hawthorn called ‘Everything Silkworms’ at the beginning of term. We have enjoyed cleaning and caring for the silkworms, picking leaves from the Grange Hill mulberry tree and making chow – another form of dried leaves. We have learned so much about the silkworms. They have assisted in our learning showing us how silk is made and the lifecycle of a silkworm.

Silkworms start as black eggs and slowly turn into yellow eggs. When they are yellow, they start to hatch and have five instars or stages of life. When the silkworm has finished its fifth instar, it spins a cocoon. Inside the cocoon, the silkworm slowly turns into a moth. The silkworms emerge from their cocoon and mate with another moth, they lay around 100 eggs and then another lifecycle begins.

Silkworms feed on mulberry leaves and in the winter when there are no leaves on the tree, they feed on chow.

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Natalie Vander Sluys
Year 5 Homeroom Teacher


Drama News

VCE Theatre Studies Units 1 & 2 and Year 9 Drama Page to Stage Electives Perform at the Malthouse Theatre

Both the Year 9 Drama Page to Stage elective and the VCE Theatre Studies Units 1 & 2 performed at the Malthouse Theatre, with their responses to a text commissioned for the 'Suitcase Series' called 'Turbine', by Dan Giovannini.

The students engaged with the themes of climate change using the structure of the five stages of grieving, and created original interpretations to share with other schools involved in the program. It was a rewarding experience to showcase the work in front of other colleges and performing arts professionals in Melbourne. The Year 9 students also performed for the school community in the Wardell Theatre and the audience was impressed by the maturity of the students’ response to this important issue.

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Friends of the Performing Arts (FOPA)

Positions are available for Alumnae to work with the Drama department on the co-curricular performances in 2017. Interested Alumnae should apply to Director of Drama, Ms Gabrielle Quin:

Speech and Drama Reflections

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed taking part in Speech and Drama lessons throughout 2016 – it’s served as a creative outlet, giving me an opportunity to make friends and providing many new experiences. Having an inviting space such as the 45 minutes on a Wednesday has taught me so much, not only about my limits as an actor, but how I can overcome them. I’ve learned not only how to laugh at myself, but also how to understand the feelings of someone else and how to imitate them, how to go with my gut when performing and how to embrace new things. At the Speech and Drama Spring Showcase last week, my fellow drama students and I were offered a chance to not only host the show, but also perform the monologues we’d been preparing for months. It was so nice to be able to share the skills I’ve gained with others, but also, most importantly, share my newfound confidence in myself – all thanks to the fabulous, funny and the extremely nice teacher who always treats us with respect, Mrs Salinas-Byrne.

Ngaire Bogemann
Year 8

This year in Speech and Drama, we have done many exciting things. One of the things that I have enjoyed the most was the Speech and Drama Spring Showcase. For the showcase, everyone performed a monologue, a duologue or a speech. My monologue was called 'Chocolate Heaven' and I got to dress up and used props. Lucky for me, my props were chocolates!

Throughout the year, I have been having acting classes every Tuesday. These have been extremely fun because we would do improvisations, monologues and group performances! Every time we did something, we just kept getting better. This year has been such an incredible experience and could not have been any better. I cannot wait to continue with classes next year!

Sofia Rossi
Year 7

This year, I participated in the public speaking program here at Genazzano and my eyes were opened to the world of presenting and communicating. Through the program, I was able to develop skills in effective tone and projection, and I learnt different techniques which helped me to express my point of view. I was presented with opportunities to speak with various audiences and to build upon my skills. The skills I have developed have not only helped me in my classes at school, but have also helped me to build confidence and are skills that I am sure will assist me in the future.

Mary Henry
Year 10
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Languages News

Buon Natale! Merry Christmas!

Finalmente è arrivato Natale! È il momento di mangiare il panettone! È anche un momento in cui si unisce in famiglia e con amici. A settembre, sono stata a Roma e ho visto papa Francesco, anche lì si sono uniti tante persone per ascoltare la sua parola. Ha parlato di avere Misericordia e di volere bene a tutti. Spero tanto che questo messaggio del papa siapresente in questi giorni che ci prepariamo per le feste. Buon Natale e felice anno nuovo!

Christmas has finally arrived! It is time to eat panettone. It is also a time for family and friends to unite. In September, I was in Rome and I saw Pope Francis. Heaps of people came to hear his speech. He spoke about Mercy and to love one another. I hope that the Pope’s message is present in the following weeks leading to Christmas. Merry Christmas and have a Happy New Year!

Sofia Licciardello
Year 7B

Dante Alighieri Society Conversation Program

The Dante Alighieri Society is offering a 14 week conversation program in Semester 1 2017 to VCE students to reinforce classroom teaching in preparation for the Italian oral exam.  These are open to both Year 11 and 12 students. For more information, please contact Mary Marcuccio (Conversation Classes Coordinator) on 0419 160 336.

Adam Bianco
Curriculum Leader: Languages


Maths News

Australian Mathematics Competition

Chelsea Kwan (Year 8) was invited to the Australian Mathematics Trust (AMT) Awards presentation at Wesley College on 18 November 2016. Chelsea received a prize, indicating she was in the top 0.3% of her year group in the nation. Here is Chelsea with Ms Giovanna Vardaro, the Victoria State Director of the Australian Mathematics Competition, and Professor Mike Clapper, who is the Executive Director of the Australian Mathematics Trust at the presentation. Congratulations, Chelsea.


Carol Patterson
Curriculum Leader: Mathematics


Co-curricular News

With all co-curricular activities now finished for the year, students will be able to access their co-curricular transcripts by logging on to the co-curricular database. These transcripts provide an up-to-date account of all activities for which students have received a colour point.

At the beginning of 2017, the co-curricular database and all co-curricular information will be posted on GenConnect - please note this move from GenSpace. A new co-curricular schedule will be posted on GenConnect and we encourage all students to peruse this schedule to plan their co-curricular involvement for Semester 1.

Gold Duke of Edinburgh

There are currently 12 students in Year 11 participating in the Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award. On 9 December, the girls will travel to Cradle Mountain to walk the Overland Track. The girls have planned the trip themselves, including transport to and from Melbourne on the Spirit of Tasmania, all navigation and routes, food, equipment, risk management plans, camp bookings and a budget for their seven days of hiking. They are to be congratulated on their ability to work together to plan this journey in great detail.

Catherine Murphy
Director of Co-curricular Programs


Health Centre News

SunSmart and UV

As the year draws to a close and summer finally appears to be upon us, it is a timely reminder that ultraviolet levels are on the rise, and we need to think about being sun smart and proactive in protecting ourselves against overexposure to ultraviolet radiation.

While we need to have some exposure to the sun to maintain a healthy level of vitamin D, overexposure carries a risk of skin and eye damage. To help maintain the vitamin D level, there is no reference to sun protection levels from May until August, unless the UV Index reaches 3 and above.

There are, however, certain individuals who require sun protection, even on days that don’t appear to be sunny. The key here is to monitor the UV index and protect as necessary.

At Genazzano, from September to April, we will adhere to the SunSmart principles of hats and sunscreen. This will be reinforced at the start of the 2017 school year.

As summer has arrived with hot weather to come, a reminder that we need to look after ourselves, loved ones and pets, and stay safe.

Virginia Boyce
College Nurse


Music News

Years 4, 5 & 6 Instrumental Concert

On Tuesday 15 November, all students in Years 4, 5 & 6 presented a concert in class ensemble format for family and friends.

The Year 4 students study on diatonic metallophones, exploring musical elements such as rhythm, beat & tempo, pitch, melody, harmony, dynamics and note reading. The girls presented two dynamic and polyphonic items entitled ‘Popcorn Polka’ and ‘Captain Bob’.

In Years 5 & 6, students are split roughly halfway between the Strings and Band streams, thus enabling four ensembles to be formed. The girls work for an hour each week on skills that will enable them to understand and have an appreciation of a variety of musical styles. Pieces are selected for their tonal variety and rhythmical challenges, as well as for their technical challenges at all levels of ability. All of these aspects are developed collaboratively and rely on effective student participation. Many of these girls have private lessons as well as their group instrumental class each week.

One of the most important skills to develop at this level is the ability to listen. Listening forms the basis of how we contribute to the overall success of the ensemble. Watching and following the conductor is another important skill to develop. Following the conductor’s gestures and using their playing skills to implement these changes in gesture is often a difficult challenge in an ensemble.

Gaining experience and developing ensemble skills within this setting allows students to move forward to more advanced groups that are conducted outside of the curriculum.

The girls in all four ensembles performed in an exemplary manner and the enthusiastic audience was clearly most appreciative of their efforts.

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Chris Kopke, Ryan McClusky and Emily Tarrant
Head of Strings, Head of Percussion and Head of Jazz & Contemporary Studies

Da VINCI Junior ‘Cellobration’ Class

On Monday 28 November, Genazzano’s junior cellists converged on the Madeleine Centre to celebrate their accomplishments, in a Da VINCI Junior ‘Cellobration’ class. Each student presented a beautiful short solo piece and the 2017 Music Captain, Claudia Kuner, also inspired all with a dynamic ‘blues’ cello performance. We rounded off the class with a spirited and spontaneous cello ensemble performance of ‘Jingle Bells’ to usher in the festive season.

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Alister Barker
Cello Teacher

Madeleine Strings & Year 1 String Program

Madeleine Strings had a successful year, introducing young string players in the Early to Middle Years to the art of ensemble playing. The girls come together every Monday during lunchtime and learn as a heterogeneous string class with instruments consisting of the violin, cello, and double bass.

At the final Grange Hill Assembly on 30 November, the Madeleine Strings presented two items, ‘Busy Bikes’ and ‘Ice Train’, both composed by Queenslander, Stephen Chin.

Following the Madeleine Strings’ performance, the girls in the Year 1 String Program presented a short piece entitled ‘Raindrops’ by Blackwell. These students have been studying the art of string playing since the beginning of Term 3, and this presentation was their very first public performance. Their enthusiasm on stage was delightful and they were all very pleased with themselves, especially given the animated response from the audience.

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Chris Kopke
Head of Strings

The Year 6 Instrumental Program Band’s Inaugural Visit to Deakin Edge!

On Monday 14 November, members of the Year 6 Instrumental Program Band travelled to Deakin Edge in Federation Square to take part in the 2016 Victorian Schools Music Festival. Now in its fifth year, this highly regarded festival provides sessions throughout the year for school ensembles to come together, perform for each other and to work with expert clinicians. This was the Instrumental Program Band’s first visit to the festival.

Many weeks of personal practise and ensemble rehearsals resulted in the girls preparing their performance repertoire to a high standard. The festival provides a wonderful opportunity for Victorian school bands to develop all aspects of their performance skills and encourages participants to strive for musical excellence in a supportive environment. It was wonderful to watch our girls rise to the challenge!

As well as presenting their prepared repertoire, band members were treated to a 15 minute on-stage tutorial from the Festival’s internationally renowned Chief Adjudicator, Ms Cyndee Hawkins, Director of Bands from Jessie Clark Middle School, Lexington, Kentucky USA. Ms Hawkins was highly impressed with the girls’ performance, ranking all areas of their assessment criteria as ‘Excellent’ and ‘Outstanding’.

Congratulations to all members of the Year 6 Instrumental Program Band. What a wonderful way to end your two year program! We look forward to welcoming those continuing with their musical studies, to our private instrumental and co-curricular ensemble programs in 2017.

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Recording Session

On Monday 28 November, the Furlan Room was converted into Genazzano’s own recording studio, as students from the Jazz and Contemporary Department tried their hand at becoming recording artists. Some of the items performed at the recent Evening of Jazz and Contemporary Music were selected to take part in this initiative, which proved to be an enjoyable and rewarding experience for our musicians. Three pieces were recorded; ‘Everything Stays’ sung and played by Alessia Paino (Year 10), ‘My Little Box’ composed and played by Eleanor Fitzgerald (Year 10) and Dominique Garcia (Year 10), and ‘Stumblin’ performed by Courtney Garcia (Year 8) and Georgina Nolan (Year 8). Many hours of practise went into preparing these items and the girls are to be congratulated for their efforts. Thanks must also go to Mr Sam Lemann, Mr Chris Paraha, Mr Ryan McCluskey and Mr Sam McKenzie for their musical and technical assistance on the day.

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Emily Tarrant
Head of Jazz and Contemporary Studies

Woodwind Christmas Concert

On Thursday 24 November, the Woodwind department held their Christmas Concert in the Montagner Auditorium, Madeleine Centre for Music and the Performing Arts.

Over 60 woodwind students from Years 4 to 11 performed in a program, featuring more than 35 wonderful items by a range of composers, who included J.S.Bach, Bizet, Mozart and Khacaturian.

The performances were of an exceptional standard and were enjoyed by a large audience.

All woodwind ensembles were featured, including the Chamber Wind Quartet, Clarinet Ensemble, Chamber Flute Ensemble, Intermediate Flute Ensemble, Oboe Quartet and various other flute trios, quartets and duets.

All students are to be congratulated on a wonderful concert, which showcased a wide variety of student performances. This concert highlighted the hard work and talent of our woodwind students and provided a unique opportunity for the girls to show off their instruments in a starring role outside their larger ensembles.

Thank you to all of the woodwind students, the woodwind staff, Mr Andrew Angus, Mr Edward Ferris and Ms Sylvie Leprohon, Ms Zen Zeng for her piano accompaniment, and Mr Sam McKenzie for the lighting and for preparing the wonderful visual background presentation.

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Mandy Lyle
Head of Woodwind

Social Justice News

Laundry and Bathroom Drive for CatholicCare

CatholicCare provide safety, security and a sense of place for asylum seekers and refugees. They arrange supported housing for families seeking asylum while they wait for a final decision on their claim for protection and asylum in Australia. Without supported housing and a sense of security, asylum seekers can feel incredibly vulnerable. They can be prone to poor mental health, language barriers and social isolation. 

This term, Social Justice Prefect, Heidi Scheffers, and Mission Prefect, Grace Ross Farrell, organised a drive to collect laundry and bathroom items for CatholicCare to use in this support program. We concentrated our efforts at Grange Hill with the Prep to Year 4 students, and also at All Hallows, where the Year 9 students collected items as well, led by their Social Justice Representatives, Amber Nugyen and Mia Gugliemi.

Genazzano Social Justice Representatives have worked to support different CatholicCare programs in 2016, and we look forward to helping out again in 2017.


Anne McIlroy
Social Justice Coordinator


Sports News

From the Director of Sport

As the term finishes and the festive season approaches, I wish to thank all students, staff, coaches, student coaches, College Executive and parents for their support of our sport program throughout 2016. I trust that the students who participated in sport this year had a fantastic experience and are already looking forward to wearing their Genazzano sport uniforms in 2017!

Congratulations to the individuals and teams who have returned triumphant with pennants and trophies throughout the year. Equally importantly, congratulations and thanks to each student who participated to the best of her ability in her chosen sport.

I wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a safe New Year. Best wishes to the current Year 12 students who are waiting on results and planning their future. Farewell and thanks to those parents for whom 2016 is their last involvement with sport, as their daughter finishes her education at Gen.

I look forward to seeing everyone at a sport venue somewhere in 2017.

GSV Finals

Over the last two weeks, a number of basketball teams finished their GSV season. We had seven teams compete in the Inter and Junior fixtures and, for the first time, all seven qualified for finals. This is a great achievement and all coaches and players should feel proud. Of these teams, four finished in 5th place, one finished runner up, and two went on to become GSV Premiers! We congratulate all coaches and players:

Junior B Team – Coach: Miss Bronte Bilston – GSV Premiers
  • Olivia Hojok (Year 7)
  • Pia Kerr (Year 7)
  • Georgia Ghantous (Year 7)
  • Ally Richardson (Year 8)
  • Alice O'Loughlin (Year 8)
  • Georgia Farlecas (Year 8)
  • Lucia La Rosa (Year 8)
  • Mia La Rosa (Year 8)
  • Lucy Dowdell (Year 8)
Junior C Team – Coach: Miss Dani Calvisi – GSV Premiers
  • Chelsea Edgar (Year 8)
  • Michaela Posar (Year 8)
  • Ruby Curtis (Year 8)
  • Melissa Incani (Year 8)
  • Hannah Hill (Year 8)
  • Lily Vander Sluys (Year 8)
  • Taylor Hee (Year 8)
  • Darby Easton (Year 7)
  • Erin White (Year 8)
  • Willow Budd (Year 8)
  • Olivia Siggers (Year 7)
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Track and Field

We wish the very best to students and staff representing the College at the Track and Field Australia All-Schools Knockout Final. By winning the Victorian competition, our team secured the right to compete at the AIS in Canberra on Monday 5 December. Congratulations to our eight competitors (listed below), and coaches Miss Kylie Williams, Mrs Sarndra Kennerley and Miss Monica Clarke.

  • Kaitlin Barr (Year 12)
  • Olivia Owen (Year 11)
  • Emma Barham (Year 11)
  • Anna Bush (Year 11)
  • Charlotte Kennedy (Year 11)
  • Paris Haussegger (Year 10)
  • Joanna O’Connell (Year 9)
  • Samantha O’Connell (Year 11)

Tennis Camp

A holiday camp to be held at the YMCA Anglesea, for students aged 12-18. Qualified tennis coaches will be in attendance. The cost is $295 for members and $345 for non-members, and this includes coaching, accommodation, transport, and all meals from lunchtime on 14 December to lunchtime on 16 December. For two members of the same family, it is $560 or $650 two non-members.

Please email for a registration form or contact Head Coach, Mr Bill Madafferi directly on 0419 572 210.

Plus, TennisMad is running tennis clinics these holidays. Come down to the courts at school and let us teach this fantastic game. It’s a chance to introduce them to tennis or to brush up on skills they have already acquired. It all happens in a fun and inclusive environment and we cater for all ages and standards. Please contact Mr Bill Madafferi for further information.

Girls Soccer

Barcelona Training Camps (FCB Escola) are coming to Melbourne from 23-27 January 2017, for girls and boys aged 6-16. For more information, visit the FC Barcelona Camp website.

2017 GSV Triathlon

Girls Sport Victoria is working in partnership with event provider ‘Sole Motive’ to enable GSV students to compete in a GSV ‘wave start’, for both a mini and sprint distance triathlon race.

Date: Sunday 12 February 2017
Venue: Trevor Barker Oval, Sandringham (Mel Ref 76 F8)
Events: 7.00am Mini Distance Triathlon (300m/10km/2km) – individual or team. 8.10am Sprint Distance Triathlon (750m/20km/5km) – individual or team.

Please contact the Sport Office if interested in further information.

Matthew Wesson
Director of Sport

From the 2017 Sports Captains

For the forthcoming year, we hope to continue to see sport at Genazzano develop and flourish. At the Celebration of Sport Evening, it was great to see the past Sport Captains, Kaitlin and Eliza, being rewarded for their dedication to the Genazzano sport program as well as mentoring us on our new role. Next year, we hope to maintain the same positive and enthusiastic approach towards sport that they displayed, whilst contributing our own knowledge and ideas gained from our past sporting experiences, both inside and outside school. We look forward to working with Mr Wesson and Miss Melonie Fulton to make 2017 a great year for sport at Genazzano.

Anna Bush and Hannah Macdonald
2017 Sports Captains

Saturday Netball

As another Saturday netball season drew to a close over the weekend, there was time to reflect on what a great year of netball we have had at the College. Nearly 500 students played netball each weekend since March as part of the Saturday netball program. Whether the girls were playing netball for the first time, were new to the College, or just wanted to play with their friends, there was always a Gen team ready to take the courts at Macleay Park.

This term also saw students from Year 3 play netball for the first time in the Junior Net program on Friday after school. It has been wonderful to see the students continue to develop their netball skills, working together as a team and demonstrate such great Gen sprit and sportsmanship.

Congratulations to all the teams who played on the weekend, especially to Genazzano Ryde (7A) who were Premiers for the Spring Fling season.

Enjoy the holidays as we look forward to another successful netball season in 2017.

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Sarndra Kennerley
Netball Coordinator

GenAquatic News

GenAquatic Club Night – Friday 2 December 2016

It's getting towards the end of the year and it's time for the summer holidays to roll in and take you from school and the pool, but before we're done, let's have some fun! Tonight, we're having our last club night of the year at the Gen Pool. We've got the team captains organising it all and it's going to be loads of fun. All we need is a little participation and a big smile from you!

State Championships

Parents and swimmers need to be aware that the Vic Age Championships will be held from Saturday 10 December to Thursday 15 December. Qualifying times will need to be achieved at an official swim meet to enter this event. Qualifying times can be found on the Swimming Victoria website.

Metro East Qualifying Sprint Meet - 28 January

The Metro East Qualifying Sprint Meet will be on Saturday 28 January. All GenAquatic competitive members should enter this event. The event is a state qualifying swim meet, allowing swimmers to qualify for the 2017 Victorian Sprint Championships. Qualifying times for the 2017 Victorian Sprint meet can be found on the Swimming Victorian website.

Metro East All Junior Selection Trial – Saturday 19 February 2017

This year, the Metro East Selection Trial will be at Aquanation in Ringwood. This event is for swimmers 14 years and under. Swimmers do not need to be registered with Swimming Victoria to enter this event. This event is great for competitive and non-competitive swimmers.

Amon Soerink
Head Coach

Rowing News

The Year 9 Canty rowing squad recently travelled to Dimboola for a two day regatta on the Wimmera River. The entire squad stayed in the nearby camping park and enjoyed dinner cooked by the local primary school. Despite some difficult conditions involving wind and rain, all the girls showed great resilience and spirit. Isobel Passaris won the Under 17 Single Scull, rowing beautifully in very windy conditions. Zoe Purcell and Grace Kentish won the Under 17 Double Scull, and in the Open Quad Scull, the crew of Portia Swainsbury, Georgia MacIsaac, Isobel Passaris, Linda Skidmore (also coach) and cox Georgia Randles, won the silver goblets in one of the closest races of the day.

On the Sunday, the crews also competed in a 6km time trial before packing up and heading back to the city.

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Jane Robinson
Rowing Coordinator


College Dates for the Next Fortnight

Monday 5 December, all day

Year 7 Reflection Day

Monday 5 December, all day

Year 8 Reflection Day

Tuesday 6 December, 6.30pm

Carols by Twilight

Wednesday 7 December, 1.00pm

End of Term 4

Please visit our website for a full list of 2016 Term Dates or our College calendar.


News from the GMA

Last Monday, we held our final committee meeting for 2016 at The Fat Penguin Cafe, Kew. Following the formal meeting and welcome to the new committee and coordinators, we enjoyed a light lunch. Forward planning for an eventful 2017 has already begun with all our key dates finalised for the year.

It’s been a great year and hard to believe it’s over. I’d like to personally thank you all for supporting the GMA, whether it was through baking, serving, sorting, selling, organising or simply attending our events your contribution is highly valued.

Due to an unexpected increase in family commitments, I have elected not to continue as GMA President in 2017. I have thoroughly enjoyed the year and have gained much from my involvement with the GMA.

I'm handing over my responsibilities to Mrs Jacqui Pirone who has held the position of Vice President Middle Years, and I will work closely with her and the rest of the committee to ensure a smooth transition.

I wish everyone blessings this Christmas and a safe and happy holiday season.

Recent Events Held

Orientation Days for Years 5 and 7

The Orientation Days for Years 5 and 7 went brilliantly thanks to all the helpers we had, and in particular Mrs Karen King and Ms Libby Meaden who did all the organising.

Second Hand Book Sale

Under the guidance of Mrs Gilda Riccio, Mrs Maddy Galgano and Mrs Marissa De Maria, a dedicated group of mums gathered late last week to sort the student text books and then presented again at 7.00am Saturday morning, to sell them to the many families who arrived early to snag a bargain! Thanks to your efforts, the GMA has provided a valuable service for families and raised further funds for both the College and students. Whilst the final figure won’t be known until the new year, it is estimated that we have raised $5,000.

I’d like to thank the coordinators of this year’s sale. It’s an enormous task and they’ve done a superb job. Thanks to all the parents who assisted in the sale too. View details of books that are still available for sale.

Year 7 Parents Night Out

On Saturday 19 November, a group of 60 Year 7 parents ventured out to The Craft & Co. on Smith Street Collingwood, a family run venture with a love of good food and house-made gin, to celebrate the end of another school year. It was nice to catch up with some familiar faces and wonderful to meet some new ones. It was a night filled with tasty food, lots of chatter and laughter; a lovely way to end the year.

Wishing everyone a wonderful and safe Christmas break and looking forward to some more catch ups as Year 8 parents!

Year 1 Parents Dinner

The Year 1 parents celebrated the end of another wonderful year with dinner at Mr Bianco, Kew.

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Welcome Morning Teas - helpers needed!

Can you contribute to these first two events for 2017 on Wednesday 1 February and Thursday 2 February? We need a few mums to bake and several to help set up and serve morning tea on the Circular Drive. If you can help in any capacity, please send an email to:

Save the Dates

Wednesday 7 December, 1.00pm

Grange Hill End of Year BBQ

Tuesday 13 December, 10.00am

Year 1 Gingerbread Workshop

Tuesday 31 January 2017, 6.00pm

Year 12 2017 Welcome BBQ, Madeleine Centre

Wednesday 1 & Thursday 2 February 2017, 8.20am

GMA Welcome Morning Teas, Circular Drive

Saturday 11 February 2017, 5.30pm

GenWelcomes Mass

Monday 13 February 2017, 8.40am

GMA Committee Meeting

Friday 24 February 2017, 7.00pm

Year 7 Family Night

Monday 27 February 2017, 7.00pm

GMA Class Reps Launch Meeting

Carmel Greer
President, Genazzano Mothers' Association


News from the GFA

Since my last report our volunteers have organised two well attended and enjoyable events. The first event was attended by Year 5 and 6 students and their dads in early November. They participated as a team in ten pin bowling, and then played laser skirmish to determine who was the boss! Between games, everyone enjoyed party food, drinks and good conversation. Thanks to Mr Lu Italiano for organising this father-daughter event.

The GFA Golf Day was held again, with more than 40 people attending including sponsors, parents and staff. Those with the time spent the day playing 18 holes, and the remainder joined them for a twilight dinner overlooking the Yarra at the Kew Golf Club. Thanks to Mr Tim Strafford for organising this corporate event.

We now have a new executive in place with many new faces including Mr Simon Hourigan who joins as our new Treasurer.

As the year is almost over, we will be holding the Fathers’ Thank You BBQ tonight, commencing at 5.30pm, adjacent to the Madeleine Centre overlooking the oval. All fathers are welcome to attend to enjoy a lamb spit and refreshments.

We still require volunteers for some of next year’s events, so if you can help and would like to know more, I would be happy to discuss the details with you.

Bruce MacIsaac
President, Genazzano Fathers’ Association


Latest News

  1. Boroondara Film Festival

  2. SLAV Research Award 2016


Boroondara Film Festival

On Tuesday 22 November, four Genazzano FCJ College Year 12 Media students were selected to screen their films at the Rivoli Village Cinema for the Boroondara Short Film Festival. Out of the ten films chosen to be shown, Nakita Podreka, Tyler McRae, Emmy Heard and Samantha Weston, had their films judged by a panel of industry professionals. Categories for the competition included Best Production, Best Acting, Best Plot, Most Creative and Best ‘Smart Phone’ Film.

Congratulations to Nakita who received the Best Production Award on the night.


SLAV Research Award 2016

juliaCongratulations to Ms Julia Petricevic, Teacher Librarian, who has received a research award from the School Library Association of Victoria (SLAV). The award includes $1000 support towards Julia sharing and presenting her work. It is an acknowledgement of her efforts to work with data to benefit the learning of our students and will result in valuable evidence for our own teachers and the wider profession.

Julia received the research fellowship on Friday 25 November at the Engaging Readers Conference at the State Library of Victoria, from the President of SLAV, Dianne Ruffles.



Carols by Twilight


Tuesday 6 December
6.30pm - 8.00pm
No bookings required
Add to your calendar

Save the Date for 2017


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Saturday 11 February
5.30pm Mass at Our Lady of Good Counsel Church
6.30pm Dinner at Genazzano FCJ College


Community News

Youth Engagement Project (YEP) Events

Youth Led Mass and Social Sunday

The next monthly youth mass for all the Parishes involved in YEP. It will be followed by social time, for us to come together as a community for pizza, sausages or ice blocks.

Date: Sunday 4 December
Time: 5.00pm - 7.15pm
Venue: All Hallows Parish, 17 Brenbeal St, Balwyn

To RSVP or find out more, contact or call 0434 254 233.

Days of Service

Social Action Day working with those marginalised and assisting at St Joseph’s Parish in South Yarra. An awesome way to donate a day of school holidays, getting your hands dirty in our local community. For Year 9 and above.

Date: Wednesday 14 December

To RSVP or find out more, contact or call 0434 254 233.

YEP Christmas Party

YEP is hosting a Christmas party to celebrate the fantastic year that has been! Join us for a night of fun and to help us thank all those who have made this year at YEP possible.

Date: Friday 16 December
Time: 7.00pm
Venue: Hawthorn Parish Centre

To RSVP or find out more, contact or call 0434 254 233.