It is with great enthusiasm and excitement that we return to Mount St. Joseph Girls’ College. We, in the Wellbeing Team, are continually struck by the honesty, humility and sense of community that is so evident as we enter the gates from Maidstone Street. The students are so energised and excited to be at MSJ. We, in the Wellbeing Team, feel privileged to support you and your family as you journey with us and look forward to your continued partnership.

Welcome to our Year 7 families, new students to the College, and new and returning families to our Mount St. Joseph Girls’ College Community. It has been a busy start to the school year, but l have been so impressed to see so many young women commit themselves to their study and establishing such positive study skills. Our theme this year challenges students to accept who they are as young women, and to challenge themselves to grow fully as young women in the ‘image and likeness of God.’ Each new academic year provides opportunities for students to meet new people and to celebrate, challenge and affirm our differences and diversity.

As a team this year, we are developing our Wellbeing lesson to promote and reinforce the concept of resilience and grit. We can all attest that 2020 was a difficult year and the lockdowns certainly made us reflect on our lives and to think carefully about what is important. This year, we want to work with you to promote resilience and grit in our young women. Each one of us is resilient and we have the capacity to manage our pathways and the choices we make. When working with young people at home, promote the skills of a growth mindset and support your daughter in recognising that we all face setbacks, but we can all overcome these through hard work, tenacity and courage.

Student-led Workshops

It was lovely to meet so many families at our recent Year 7 Parent Information Night and Student-led Conferences. Student voice is an important aspect of our College for our learners to own and direct their learning, wellbeing and faith. The energy and strong sense of community was testament to the partnerships developed here at Mount St. Joseph Girls’ College. The format this year enabled all families to attend chosen interview and to deepen their understanding of their daughter's learning. Thank you to the many families who attended. This evening was only the beginning of the many conversations centred on your daughter’s learning, wellbeing and faith. I urge you to continue these conversations and place your daughter’s learning and growth at the heart of conversations here at the College.

Our Wellbeing for Learning Team

In 2021, we have introduced a new structure to support your daughter’s wellbeing to promote and enhance learning. In Years 7–9, we have two Year Level Team Leaders and in the Senior School we have one person responsible for each House. If your daughter needs additional support in learning, wellbeing and faith, the first port of call is the subject teacher or Learner Mentor. If you wish to raise the issue further, contact the relevant Year Level Team Leader or House Leader.

Introducing our Team

Year 7 Team Leaders: Lidia Morlin & Bianca Stafrace

Year 8 Team Leaders: Jane Sammut & Nick Tresize

Year 9 Team Leaders: Kelly Sexton & Mitch Piazza

Providence House Leader: Sarah Thompson

McCormack House Leader: Rory Godbold

Penola House Leader: Courtney Davies

Kincumber House Leader: Alison Duncan

Solomon House Leader: Clare Kubacki

Cameron House Leader: Terri Curnow

Director of Student Wellbeing: Stacey Bourke

This year, the Wellbeing Leaders are capably supported by hardworking and committed Learning Mentors. A gentle reminder that in the Wellness Centre, we now have four Allied Health Professionals - psychologist Susha Vance, and social workers Jacinta McMahon, Clare Duong-Thai and Melissa Mangion - who can support you and your daughter.

If you were unable to attend our recent Parent Information Night or Student-led Conference, l encourage you to contact your daughter’s Learning Mentor and introduce yourself. Attached to this newsletter is the name of each Learning Mentor and their email address. It is important to utilise your daughter's pastoral group teacher or Learning Mentor as the first contact person. Feel free to contact them via email or telephone.

Parent Modules

Wednesday 11 March


This year, the College is offering a variety of 40 minute workshops to support our parents.

There will be wellbeing workshops that focus on managing anxiety, mediation, social media, and a safe partying presentation from Victoria Police. There will be learning workshops that focus on understanding the ATAR, Maths, understanding feedback, PAM and Canvas. An email will be sent next week with registration details.


Uniform: In Terms 1 and 4, the College Blazer is optional, however, the jumper must not be worn as the outer garment. Students in Year 12 are only permitted to wear the College Year 12 Commemorative Hoodie on Friday.

SunSmart: As Term 1 is often the warmest month and U.V rays are strongest, it is expected that all students wear sunscreen from home. Around the College, students are also able to apply additional sunscreen. The likelihood of developing skin cancer is often in adolescence. I encourage families to view the YouTube clip, “Dear 16 year-old me."

Parking: Families are to use the Harrington Square carpark when dropping off and collecting students. Over the past couple of weeks, a few families have been parking on Maidstone Street - please note that this is a No Standing Zone, as it can become very easily congested. Parking inspectors continue to monitor the situation and will issue fines.

Please do not park over driveways or on people’s nature strip. Late last year, we received phone calls from our neighbours in Civic Parade. Again, the safest place to collect your daughter at the end of the day is in Harrington Square.

Supervision before School

Gates will be opened at 7:55am; students are to remain in the TWLC Courtyard.

Ground Floor Toilets are open for student access. In wet weather, the PAC will be open for students.

8:15am Yard Duty: Corridors are opened and students can place materials in lockers and begin organising their day.

Student Safety and Wellbeing - A Child-safe School

At Mount St. Joseph Girls’ College, we hold the care, safety and wellbeing of children and young people as a central and fundamental responsibility of our school. Our commitment is drawn from and inherent in the teaching and mission of Jesus Christ, with love, justice and the sanctity of each human person at the heart of the gospel (CECV Commitment Statement to Child Safety). Celebrating and affirming all young people in the Charism of the Sisters of St. Joseph of the Sacred Heart, we value the dignity and individuality of each person in our community and seek to live in a community guided by justice and fairness for all.

For our students to flourish academically and in all areas of their lives, it is important that they are happy and enjoy being at school. Their safety, and physical and mental wellbeing are of paramount importance to us.

Where can I go for help?

We encourage any student who feels unsafe to confide in a trusted adult or contact the College's Child Safety Officers, Mr Steven Mifsud and Ms Stacey Bourke in person or by email:

The College has psychologists who are available to help students and their families. Our Wellbeing Team includes psychologists, Director of Student Wellbeing, Year Level Team Leaders and House Leaders, Teachers, and Learning Mentors.

Helpful Online & Telephone Support Services


Youth Beyondblue

Eating Disorders Foundation of Victoria 1300 550 236

LifeLine 131 114

Kids Helpline 1800 551 800

Suicide Line 1300 651 251

Domestic Violence Crisis Line 1800 200 526

Orygen Youth Health 1800 888 320

Department of Human Services 1300 650 172

Eating Disorders 1300 550 236

Youth Drug & Alcohol Advice (YoDAA) 1800 458 685

Mobile Phones

A mobile phone is a telephone with access to a cellular (telecommunication) system, with or without a physical connection to a network. For the purpose of this policy, ‘mobile phone’ refers to mobile phones and any device that may connect to or have a similar functionality to a mobile phone such as smart watches.

Mobile phones are to be turned off once a student enters the College. It is the student’s responsibility to ensure the mobile device is in a secure place. Students need to be present and in the moment whilst at school and, as a College community, we want to promote fair and reasonable use of mobile devices. The use of technology is important, but the risks and benefits from its use need to be managed and responsibilities owned.

Healthy Eating, Healthy Mind

Just a gentle reminder to families and students that breakfast is an essential meal for the day. Students should not begin school without a breakfast of cereal, toast or yoghurt. A good breakfast establishes good eating routines for the day and fuels our body for learning and physical activity. Students are reminded that the College canteen is not open Term 1. Students should not visit Harrington Square before a school day.


A reminder to telephone Reception between 8:00am and 9:00am on 9398 2000 for notification if your daughter is unable to attend school. Students need to provide a note from their parents explaining their absence, which is to be given to their Learning Mentor when they return to school. Notes are not to be written in the diary as staff are required to keep these on file. Students who arrive late to school must report to the office to receive a late pass before going to class.

Looking after valuables: Students are reminded that the College provides each student with a locker and lock and all valuables should be securely kept in their locker.

Steven Mifsud - Deputy Principal, Student Wellbeing