Newsletter in Full - Edition 7 2015

News from the Principal

Dear Parents,

Twelve of our Year 10 students are currently engaged in an immersion experience in Timor Leste accompanied by Deputy Principal: Faith and Mission, Mrs Lila McInerney and College Nurse, Mrs Virginia Boyce.  The group left on Monday morning, arrived safely and will return on Wednesday 27 May. We are looking forward to hearing the reflections on their experiences. Mrs Kerri Stiles, who has worked at the College on previous occasions, will be working in the Health Centre during this time while Mrs Boyce is away.

Sincere thanks are extended to the Genazzano Fathers Association, in particular Mr Mike Ingham, for their involvement in the organisation of Talking Careers for our students on Monday evening.  This is Mike’s final year as his youngest daughter Catherine leaves school this year, and we have benefitted enormously from the generous way he has been involved.  Sincere thanks too to our wonderful Careers Advisor Mrs Judy O’Donohue with the support of Mrs Dee Casey – for their commitment to work with the students in this area.  As always it was wonderful to see so many of our former students and parents engaged in this event.

The Unit 3 and 4 Theatre Studies students are to be congratulated for their wonderful performances of ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time’ last week under the gifted direction of their teacher Ms Gabrielle Quin.

Our Year 9 students have been engaged this week in their three day 2015 ‘Adventurous Journey’ as part of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (Bronze) program.  They have been based at Wensleydale Farm in the Great Otway National Park in two separate groups: May 18-20 – Corry, d’Houet and Gerda; and May 20-22 – Douglas, Stock and Winter.  Our thanks to supporting staff led by Director of Year 9 Programs Ms Josephine Quinlan, as well as Simon Annett, Charles Cayrel, Robyne Clyne, James Gilchrist, Elizabeth Isaacson, Jessica Lane and Kylie Williams.

Thanks to all involved in the NAPLAN testing last week for years 3, 5, 7 and 9.  Analysis of this data will assist us in further diagnosis of student growth and program development.

I am very pleased to advise that Lorena Stents (Year 11) has won the Grand Final of the Rotary Club of Balwyn Public Speaking Competition held on Tuesday 12 May. This is a wonderful achievement and I wish to acknowledge Mrs Eileen Bendall for her support of our students in this area. 

In February, students Emma Bruno and Olivia Feutrill of Year 11 were both involved in the “National Cheerleading Association – NCA” competition in Dallas Texas, and were awarded 7th place. Kayla Bruno was involved in the “The Cheerleading Worlds” held at Disney World in Orlando in April 2015. After qualifying for this prestigious competition her team, Melbourne Cheerleading Academy, was awarded 16th place. 

We pray for the recently deceased:  

  • Billy Steele, grandfather of Emma (Year 12), Chloe, father of William and mother-in-law of Katarina.
  • Vilma A'Hearn, grandmother of Meaghan (Year 12), Erin (Year 10), mother of Adrian and mother-in-law of Jacinta.
  • Grandfather of Ariyana Wanigaskera Farik (Year 4)
  • Grandfather of Kalypso Tsoukalas- Elphick (Year 3)
  • Step-grandfather of Alessandra Pop (Year 4)
  • Great-grandmother of Isobel Kirkman (Year 10)
  • Grandfather of Melissa Incani (Year 7) and Jessica Incani (Year 10)

We also pray for the Sisters, Faithful Companions of Jesus in their various ministries throughout the world; and members of our community who are ill at this time.


Patricia A Cowling



A Pentecost Prayer

Spirit of the living God, visit us again on the Feast day of Pentecost.
Come, Holy Spirit.

With rushing wind that sweeps away all barriers, 
Come, Holy Spirit.

With tongues of fire that set our hearts aflame, 
Come, Holy Spirit.

With love that overlaps the boundaries of race and nation,
Come, Holy Spirit.

With power from above to make our weakness strong, 
Come, Holy Spirit.


Latest News



House History in a Box

One of the lovely activities that all Year 7 students do as part of the Religious Education curriculum is the Belonging to Genazzano unit. This unit introduces the story of Marie Madeleine d’Houët and the history of the Society of the Faithful Companions of Jesus. The girls then explore the very special Australian chapter which began with the arrival of the sisters in 1882 and the founding of Genazzano in 1889.

In the old days, pre 1986, the school had three houses - Cardinal, Silver and Blue. There were many battles fought between Cardinal and Blue for sporting and musical ascendancy over the years. Silver was the thinking house!  These original colours reflected the core school uniform colours. As the school grew in size it was decided that the houses were to be given names that would be derived from the women integral to the school’s history. Today, there are six houses: d’houët, Douglas, Corry, Stock, Gerda and Winter with all having a particular colour associated with them.

As part of getting to know the College and to build the foundations of house and school spirit the Year 7 girls are asked to do some research on their house patron. It is not often that students can bring in artefacts from our College’s history, but when Tess Hickey of 7A announced that she had her great Aunt, Mary Winter’s vintage leather hat box, she was keen to show it to the class.  Tess is, of course, a Winter girl. As any good Gen girl knows the Mary Winter Prize for Loyalty is the most coveted one in Year 12.

Tess’s family regard the hatbox as an heirloom and the 7A girls treated it with respect as they touched the leather, checked out the brocade lining and noted the travel labels. They laughed at the old-fashioned idea of a hat box, an alien concept amongst today’s teenage fashionistas who travel lightly with a backpack and beanie, but de rigeur for smart young ladies of the 1920’s and 1930’s.

One of the defining things about Genazzano is its sense of history and tradition and the stories that resonate throughout the years. Mary Winter stands tall in the history of our College, so although not quite a relic, certainly the girls in Winter were thrilled to be able to make a tangible connection to this important woman. 

Just a little bit of College House history in a hatbox!

Ann Rennie
English and Religious Education Teacher

Morning Liturgies at Genazzano

As a College we are inviting all involved in our College community to join us in prayer for two significant occasions:

For Pentecost there will be a liturgy in the College Chapel on Friday 22 May from 8.15-8.25am.

To celebrate National Reconciliation Week there will be a liturgy in the College Chapel on Wednesday 27 May from 8.15-8.25am.

All members of the Genazzano FCJ College community are welcome to join us for these special liturgies.

Lorena Stents Wins Youth Public Speaking Comp


It is with great pleasure that we announce that Genazzano Year 11 student, Lorena Stents, won the Grand Final of the Rotary Club of Balwyn’s Youth Public Speaking Competition. There were three other speakers in the final with Lorena – students in Years 10 and 11 from Siena College, Camberwell Grammar and Xavier College. Lorena is an exceptional speaker who thoroughly deserved her first place award and $300 book voucher.

Congratulations Lorena!



We are pleased to relaunch the Friends of Genazzano singing group (SingGEN)

Come one, come all…
No need to read music! No previous singing experience required! Come and sing with US!

This is a group set up to have FUN and bring together parents, alumnae, College staff and friends of Genazzano. The is a community singing group open to all adults who would like to join. Please come along, catch up with friends, meet some new people – sing and laugh together! Singing is good for the soul and “there is safety in numbers” as they say.

Led by Shaun Islip, the group will meet weekly to sing a range of music, including some by contemporary artists such as Adele, Coldplay and some “old” favourites by the Beatles, Elton John and Billy Joel. The array of musical options is endless and you can make some requests as we go along.

Time: 7.00-8.30pm
Each Wednesday (for approximately 8 weeks)
*Cost: $10 – pay at the door
Venue: Wardell Theatre

If you have any questions please contact Amanda

*The fee is to cover the cost for our Singing Group Leader (Shaun Islip); any funds raised in excess of the Group Leader costs will be directed to the work of the FCJ Sisters in Asia/Australia and to the College’s East Timor Project.



Genazzano Social Rowing ‘Learn to Row’

Would you like to try rowing?
No prior experience necessary!
The Genazzano Rowing Club is offering a 4 week ‘Learn to Row’ Program, starting this Sunday 24 May. The program is open to all parents, past parents, alumnae and friends of the College. 
Gather 3 friends to form a crew or we can set you up in a crew.
Please see below for further details about the program. 

We look forward to seeing you down at the River.

Dates: Sunday 24 and 31 May and Sunday 14 and 21 June
(no sessions on the Queen’s Birthday long weekend)
Time: Week 1 - 90 minutes: 10.15am-11.45am
Following 3 weeks are 60 minutes: 10.15am-11.15am
Venue: Gen/Xavier Rowing Sheds
2 Burwood Rd, Hawthorn (under the bridge, where Bridge/Burwood Rd crosses the Yarra river)
Cost: $100 per person – includes experienced coach and all equipment 
Enquiries Madi Huysing
Mobile: 0428 862 102

Parent Forum

It is with great pleasure that I invite you to our Term 2 Parent Forum. These conversations provide the perfect opportunity for our community to share information and learn more about College life and new initiatives.

We will have our Deputy Principal, Student Learning and Wellbeing, speak to you about our restorative practices at the College.  


Date: Thursday 28 May 2015

Time: 8.45am – 10.00am

Venue: Wardell Board Room


I encourage you to come along and be part of this forum. By working together, we can make our great school an even better one.

To register, please email your RSVP to by Tuesday 26 May 2015.


LitFest Dinner 2015

Dinner with Martin Flanagan

6.30pm, Thursday 11 June 2015

The Madeleine Centre for Music and the Performing Arts
Genazzano FCJ College
301 Cotham Road, Kew

$30 per Adult and $25 per Student

Announcement of the winners of the Xavier College and Genazzano FCJ College Year 9 short Story Competition.

To reserve your ticket please book online at

Bookings close Friday 5 June 2015.

Enquiries to: Dr Susan La Marca on 8862 1085 or


GMA Ball
Saturday 29 August, 7.00pm 

GLS Breakfast
Wednesday 2 September, 7.00am

Outstanding Alumna of the Year Awards Evening
Tuesday 15 September, 6.00pm

GMA Annual Ball

Saturday 29 August

Planning has begun for this year’s GMA Ball which will be bigger and better than ever! The greatest social and fundraising event of the year is being coordinated by Johanna Nesbitt with a very enthusiastic committee including, Zana Bytheway, Helen Condilis, Sonia Cappellazzo, Julie Douglas, Cathy Frawley, Nadia Peters, Belinda Rotella, Bozena Zembrzuski and Debbie O’Halloran.

If your business is interested in being a cash sponsor in return for advertising exposure, or donating a prize for the loud or silent auctions, please contact Johanna Nesbitt on or 0418 599 210. Alternatively contact Debbie O’Halloran on



Faith and Mission

Lila McInerney
Deputy Principal: Faith and Mission

Family Week

May 4-8 was Family Week. At Genazzano, we work during Family Week to raise awareness of the members of our community who are struggling with family breakdown, poverty and disadvantage and the work of Catholic Care. Catholic Care has operated for 80 years providing service to families, young people and refugees by strengthening family life through service and advocacy, and in doing so support the most vulnerable members of our community.

Since 1935, Catholic Care has responded to many family needs that emerge in our ever-changing times. Catholic Care continues its tradition of working with Catholic Education to highlight the importance of family in society.

During Family Week, the Social Justice Representatives spoke at House Assemblies and Homerooms to develop an awareness of the work of Catholic Care throughout the community. The Prefects went to All Hallows and ran a sausage sizzle and a Dodge Ball competition for the Year 9 girls. The Social Justice group ran a Mission Stall and the girls collected money to donate to Catholic Care.

Timor Leste

It is unbelievable to think that in just a few days we will be immersed in a completely different culture.

On Saturday evening, we must all take anti-malaria tablets, a ritual that we’ll continue as a group once a day while we are away. The correspondence between all nine girls and our two accompanying teachers has been constant - queries about luggage weight, clarifications of donations to collect and bring, emails to organise more meetings to organise even more. This communication is incredibly important to us, and we are reminded of how blessed we are to be a part of the Genazzano’s support group.

As well as these preparations, the Year 10 cohort gathered together to bless everyone taking part in the trip, presenting us with a personalised prayer card and candle. As well as these beautiful gifts, personalised notebooks were given out in order to record our thoughts and feelings. We will undoubtedly bring these books back filled with our once in a lifetime experiences.

Sophie Zebrowski – Timor Leste 2015

Year 9 Eucharist at All Hallows Church

Year 9 Students from Genazzano’s All Hallows campus in Balwyn, along with parishioners from All Hallows Church, recently participated in a special Year 9 Eucharist. During this Mass we commissioned the Year 9 FIRE Carriers and prayed for the students and staff who will be participating in the 2015 Kimberley Exchange Program. To be a FIRE Carriers means you are a Friends Igniting Reconciliation through Education.

The FIRE Carriers were all blessed individually by Sherry Balcombe, an Aboriginal woman from the Aboriginal Catholic Ministry, who used the warmth from a fire to bless and commission the FIRE Carriers as they embark on their journey to lead the college in activities in understanding Aboriginal story and culture. As we were blessed, Sherry said, “May you have the fire in your mind, in your heart and in your hands.” This was an extraordinary experience for us all as it felt as if the fire was being lit in our hearts and sparking our enthusiasm and commitment to live everyday as FIRE Carriers to spread the message of reconciliation and justice.

Also, during this Mass, the four students going on the three week exchange to the Kimberly were blessed by Father Brendan Reed and the College Principal, Mrs. Patricia Cowling. These students and staff will be participating in an Exchange Program with St. Mary’s College Broome. This Exchange program is in its twenty-seventh year and representatives from Genazzano will be spending three weeks journeying throughout the Kimberly region learning about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, history and story. As a College, we respect and recognise our local Elders and leaders, the Wurundjeri people and our Kimberley Exchange Program and FIRE carrier Program give us the opportunity to continue to support the message of reconciliation and justice for all Australians.

This was a very special Mass not only for the staff and students at our Year 9 Campus, but also for the Genazzano FCJ College community and the All Hallows community. We would like to thank Fr. Brendan Reed and the All Hallows community for allowing us to share this special occasion with them.

Eleanor Kirkland and Olivia Darrer.

ELC News

Celebrating Mothers’ Day

Judy Johnston
ELC Director

It is a tradition in Early Childhood Education to acknowledge our Mothers and Fathers during the Kindergarten year.  This year, our children and teachers discussed how they would like to celebrate their Mother’s special day. 

The ELC 3 has been very interested in weddings of late, as a few children have recently been involved in family weddings as flower girls. They decided to ask their Mums to bring in their wedding photos or special day equivalent, whilst they settled on a High Tea to celebrate with their Mums.

Tables were set with three tiered platters – scones with jam and cream, teapots with cups and saucers.  The children all made a special keepsake for their Mums and presented this to them after the High Tea was completed.

The ELC 4 group chose to celebrate with Afternoon Tea in the Grange Hill Library where they could spread out and have their Mums participate in a sing along and some dancing to action songs.  The children discussed the menu for afternoon tea and created their own song using the tune of ‘Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star’.  The afternoon finished with a beautiful story about a Mother’s love, which never fails to bring both Mums and teachers to tears.



Early Years News

Jacqueline Horgan
Director of Early Years

Fantastic learning is taking place both in and out of the classrooms at Grange Hill. The Prep girls are busy exploring number sentences with the aid of Numicon and have displayed their learning in the form of Alligator Addition Mathematics storyboards. These storyboards portray pictorial representations, algorithms as well as concrete material representations of a given worded number sentence. The students’ work is proudly on display in the Prep classroom. 

Elsewhere in Grange Hill, the Year Threes were glad that NAPLAN was behind them as they headed off on their Reconciliation Reflection Day at the Carmelite Monastery in Kew on Wednesday 20 May. Accompanied by Mrs Geraldine Lucic and Mrs Natalie Vander Sluys the girls were treated to a delightful tour of the Carmelite Chapel and grounds as well as participating in several reflection activities in preparation for receiving the Sacrament of Penance on June 4. The convent grounds were all the more beautiful in the late autumn sunshine.

All years, Prep to Year 4, recently participated in a ‘Hands On ‘ Science incursion in the Grange Hill Learning Lab. Each year level explored their term’s Inquiry topic and participated in simple experiments which greatly extended their learning. Prep and Year 1 explored Weather, Year 2 Water, Year 3 Earth, Sun and Moon while Year 4 experimented with rock formation and erosion in the topic Our Changing Earth. The discussions among the girls and between year levels following the excursions was fantastic to overhear

Chess has also begun at begun at Grange Hill every Friday at lunchtime in the Year 3 classroom. We welcome Tom Feng from Dark Horse Chess who is leading the sessions accompanied by Mrs Horgan. Tom takes over from Sasha Semenov who was so inspired by our girls that she is currently studying for her teaching degree. There are a few spaces left if any other girls would like to come join.

The Dr Judith Elizabeth Paphazy Early Learning Resource Centre is once more , thanks to the library staff, transforming itself into a haven for creative play. This time the theme is boxes of all shapes and sizes which can transform themselves in to apartment blocks, living spaces for the girls to explore. If you have any shoebox sized boxes at home we would love to add them to our collection.

The Year 2 girls treated us to a delightful assembly in the Montagner Auditorium on Friday 22 May with their emphasis on the water cycle. It was delightful to watch how they have grown in confidence when presenting to an audience. Well done girls!

Hands on Science

Reconciliation Reflection Day


Middle Years News

Learning Conversations: NAPLAN

One of the focuses of Middle Years Learning is having learning conversations with students which assist to build deep levels of understanding. Asking students to reflect on their learning is a powerful strategy for both teachers and parents to gauge their current thinking and comprehension. 

Last week, students in Years 5 and 7 undertook NAPLAN testing in the areas of Language Conventions: Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling, Writing, Reading and Numeracy.  By rephrasing the question, “How did you do in NAPLAN?” you could ask your daughter some of the following questions which will promote thinking and reflection:

Language Conventions:

  • Which question did you find the least challenging? What makes you say that?
  • Which question did you find the most challenging? What makes you say that?
  • What was one question that shifted your thinking?
  • What questions do you need to ask your teacher?


  • What were 2 ideas you incorporated into your writing tasks?
  • Can you make a connection between the topic you wrote for NAPLAN and another you had previously studied?
  • What was the title of your writing task?


  • What were the themes of the texts?
  • Was there a word or sentence you found challenging or confusing?


  • With which topics were you most confident?
  • What puzzled you? What questions do you have?
  • Which questions would you like to explore further?

All of these questions could be rephrased to discuss everyday learning rather than being NAPLAN specific.

As mentioned in previous correspondence, the NAPLAN parent report will be mailed to families in late Term 3.


Wayne Murrill

Director of Middle Years


Middle Years - Geography

Year 8 Geography Field Trip to Melbourne Zoo - Ensuring a Sustainable Future for Rainforest Environments

During our field trip to the Zoo, I learnt the truth about the devastating effects palm oil is having on the habitats of wild animals. I also learnt that palm oil can be produced in a sustainable way to reduce the forest clearings. Hopefully in the future the ‘Don’t Palm Us Off ’campaign will reach its set goals and save the endangered animals such as the orang-utan, the Sumatran tiger and the Asian elephant. We all gave ‘our voice’ to an animal of choice to help raise awareness of the need to reduce habitat loss.

-          Allegra Masri.


Year 7 Geography Field Trip to Maroondah Reservoir and Park - Water in the World

I thought the field trip to Maroondah Dam was a great way to learn about how water is collected and stored and how it is distributed to the people of Melbourne. It was an amazing learning experience for us and it was interesting to see the actual surroundings where the dam is located and the amenities and facilities for visitors to enjoy when they visit the park.

-          Olivia Barnes.



Later Years News

Year 10 Food Safari: Shark Fin Inn Excursion

Situated amidst China Town on Little Bourke Street is Shark Fin Inn, an authentic and popular Chinese restaurant well known for its Yum Cha menu. The restaurant has remained a favourite ever since its opening in 1980 and we were lucky enough to visit as a Food Tech class and taste Shark Fin Inn’s Yum Cha menu. We were also surrounded by crowds of differing cultures enjoying the Chinese meals and atmosphere.

The Yum Cha menu consisted of fried rice, spring rolls, a wide variety of dumplings, and desserts of layered jelly and orange slices. We tasted the wide selection of foods offered in small amounts and enjoyed them all.

As a Food Tech class, we all loved the experience that satisfied our Yum Cha cravings.

-          Erin A’Hearn and Phoebe Tang


Later Years – Geography: Sustainability Initiatives for Current and Future Urban Living

The Year 10 Geography class went on an excursion to the Docklands and were able to take a look inside the innovative National Australia Bank building on Bourke Street. It was very interesting to see how the architects had planned the building to make it as sustainable as possible. While walking though the Docklands, students made comparisons to other Melbourne suburbs and pointed out some differences. They thought about transport, residential and business areas and how they fitted into the Docklands lifestyle. Students discussed how public transport can reduce carbon emissions and how it would benefit the people living in the Docklands.

It was a great day out and the class found it very interesting. 


Careers News

Years 10-12 GFA Talking Careers Event - Monday 11 May at 7.30 pm

Thank you to all those families who came along to the excellent careers event that was organised in partnership with the GFAMany of our Alumnae, as well as some parents and friends of The College, presented their career journey and insights into what it is really like being in their chosen profession. Students in attendance from Years 10-12 learned a great deal and used it as an opportunity to ask questions and have them answered in a friendly, non-threatening informal session. Thank you to all our presenters who took the time out of their busy schedule to help our students progress along their Career journey.

Rob Bischof, GFA President from Monash University

Year 10 Work Experience Update

Year 10 students have completed their Occupational Health and Safety training and achieved their certificates to ensure they are safe whilst on their work experience placements. By now parents should have a letter outlining the details of the placement should employers need to be contacted for any reason, such as illness or running late for work. The employers also have the contact details of students and parents should that be needed. On the June 11, Year 10 Careers Day students will receive their final preparation around work experience and each will be given a journal to complete whilst on placement. Parents are requested to complete and sign the feedback sheet in the back of the journal, so your daughter can return it to class on the first day of Term 3.

Subject Selection

To support your daughter with subject selection, it can be helpful to discuss with her the importance of choosing subjects that she is good at and that she enjoys, once pre-requisite subjects are chosen. It can be difficult to know all the requirements that Tertiary providers expect students to possess to get into their courses. For current Year 11 students, this information is published at the VTAC website  under VICTER 2017.  For Year 10 students, it will be published on the VTAC website in mid -July.

NB: All Year 10 students will receive a one-on-one interview around mid- July to ensure they have the subjects they need for the courses they might like to apply for, on completing Year 12.  

Students in Years 8-9 need to choose subjects that they are good at and enjoy. Information sessions will be run in assemblies and at the Subject Selection and Careers Expo on July 15. The Careers Department is also able to assist with any queries around subject selection by email onjudy.o’ or by calling on 8862 1081.


Judy O’Donohue
Careers Advisor


Other News


Drama News

Gabrielle Quin
Drama Coordinator

VCE Theatre Studies Performance

Photos of the performance

Year 10 - All The World’s A Stage

Yesterday the Year 10 Drama students spent the day at the Malthouse Theatre together with other schools from around Victoria participating in a VCE Drama ensembles workshop. The workshop is designed to encourage sharing of techniques used in contemporary theatre practice. The Genazzano students presented the ensemble that they have devised around the theme of Narcissism, for which they received feedback from invited specialists and peers.

Year 9 Drama

The Year 9 Drama students are devising a performance around the theme of : “The New Body” using Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, the myth of Prometheus and documentaries about advances in robotics as their stimulus texts. Gen bot has even been given a role.

As part of this process, the class recently participated in an immersion day; visiting Swinburne’s Centre for Bioengineering where Dr Michelle Dunn demonstrated some of the amazing possibilities that lie ahead in the area of human/robotic interfaces. The class then took part in a workshop with contemporary dance company Chunky Move and visited the Malthouse theatre to further develop their ensemble ideas. It was a packed day of learning experiences. Look out for the performance at the end of the term!

Dr Dunn with Robots

Chunky Move

Speech and Drama Classes

Introducing: Speech and Drama Classes at Genazzano

Gabrielle Quin
Drama Coordinator

Learning to speak clearly and confidently in front of an audience is an essential life skill.

Genazzano is providing your daughter with the opportunity to learn and develop skills in Speech and Drama, empowering them to become confident women and future leaders.

For information please contact the Head of Drama, Gabrielle Quinn via: 


ICT and eLearning News

Nathan Hutchings
Director of Information and eLearning Technologies


Building Genazzano in Minecraft

As part of the Co-curricular Program, GenTech the girls are building a replica of Genazzano on our Minecraft server. The girls can use virtual avatars to build walls, windows and vending machines as well as numerous other 3D elements. Minecraft is a game where you dig (mine) and build (craft) different kinds of 3D blocks. It is sort of like online Lego and has no rules or goals except for those the player sets for themselves. Our Genazzano Minecraft server is only accessible on select computers in the Mac Lab and building an interaction can be monitored by teachers and the IT help desk team. If your daughter is interested in joining GenTech to help with the build, please come along to the Mac Lab next to the IT Help Desk on Tuesday 1 and Thursday 2 lunchtimes. 

If you would like to know more about Minecraft, a good blog for parents is:

This blog is run by an Australian mum who has lots of experience with all matters Minecraft. 



Genspace and Information Systems Use Survey

A final reminder that the Genazzano FCJ College Genspace and Information Systems Use Survey mentioned in prior editions of the eNewsletter is still open. If you have not already done so, I encourage all parents and guardians to complete the online survey. The aim of the survey is to gain a better understanding of the type of IT devices and online services that are used by parents and guardians. This information will assist us in improving IT services at the College. This survey is anonymous and best completed on a desktop or notebook device. Cut and paste the link below into your web browser in order to commence the survey.


Music News

Senior Soloist Concert

Congratulations to the following students who performing at our Senior Soloist Concert on Tuesday 12 May. It is always wonderful to see so many of our students perform at such a very high level and with enormous confidence.

The following students performed:


Fleur Williams


Chloe Hannan


Lily Pettiona

8 C

Katy Gao

10 S2

Gia Harris


Elena Murphy

8 F

Eugenie Dessent


Emily Condon


Rachael Kay

11 H1

Ella Menzies


Sandra Fu

10 G4

Judith Park


Annie Zhou

12 S4

Stella Shi


Jacinta Ryan

11 W2


Music Camp 2015

Forms and letters for our Annual Music Camp have been sent home and are now due back. Please ensure all correct information and payments are made by the due date.



Sport News

Matthew Wesson
Director of Sport

GSV Cross Country

The Preliminary Carnival was held on Tuesday 19 May at Yarra Bend Park. The team finished in 5th place overall, with the 3rd placing of the Senior squad proving to be a highlight of the day. Special congratulations to Alisa Ramsdale (Year 7B) who was 3rd across the line in the Junior event from more than 150 runners. Emma Barham (Year 10 d’Houet) finished 4th in Intermediate with Marielle Salom (Year 12 Corry) 7th and Kaitlin Barr (Year 11 Douglas) 8th in Senior.

The entire squad now moves on to the GSV Championship carnival on Friday 29 May at Bundoora Park.

SSV Cross Country

We wish good luck to the students from Years 3-6 competing in the SSV District Cross Country Carnival on Friday 22 May at Kooyong Park.

House Athletics Carnival

With the postponement of the House Athletics Carnival recently due to the inclement weather and the state of the facility, we are still investigating the possibility of a reschedule.  Of course, any decisions made in this regard will be advised to the College community.

GSV Term 2 Survey

All Term 2 sport participants should receive an email link to their Term 2 Sport Survey in the near future. We thank those students who take a few minutes to complete the survey and provide us with a range of feedback.

2015 Vic School Cycling Championships

Students interested in accessing information regarding this opportunity (October 9-11) should go to


Genazzano ‘Friends of Sport’


The Friends of Sport is an informal group, committed to supporting the overall health and wellbeing of students through physical activity.  The Friends of Sport group meet regularly throughout the year and extend an open invitation to interested parents to attend.


For further details please contact Chair, Mr John King, or 0418 383 664.



Genazzano Sport Office

Please note that the Sport Office is located on the ground floor of the Wardell building (WG101).  The office is staffed by Miss Melonie Fulton (Sports Administrator) and the phone number is 8862 1008. Alternatively, email



Co-Curricular News

Catherine Murphy
Director of Co-curricular Programs

Below is an article written by several of our fantastic Wardell Writers. This group meets every week to write together. Their article invites any interested students to come along and join them.

Wardell Writers

Once upon a time in a small anonymous classroom, tucked under the stairs with a strange leaning wall and no light to the world outside, a group of young students gathered every Wednesday with their leader. They had a precious forty-five minutes, carved out of lunchtime, in which to experiment. They were allowed to gobble their food as long as it did not get in the way of their important creative and imaginative work. Nothing was allowed to intrude on this special time where ideas would emerge from deep recesses, where strange characters would arrive half-formed and odd experiences between normal people would become a transfixing narrative of ‘what ifs’.

During this regular meeting, the leader tossed ideas at the students and they would transform these into something magical, different, unexpected and other-worldly. A word, an idea or a short description could lead… anywhere… and no path was out of bounds. In the cocoon of relative silence, away from the clamour of the cafeteria and the fear of the red biro and rubric of assessment, the students were able to write without inhibition, without constraint, knowing that their words would be shared safely in the warm appreciation of a tight-knit and like-minded group.

This weekly gathering always began with a few words of initiation and inspiration; a code to begin with. Spoken quietly, these specially selected words were the keys for unlocking a creativity that spilled out eagerly, unconventionally, and haunted - not by the imposed structure of the usual expectation of student writing - but freed by poetic license and exhilaration. Words danced across the page as minds were liberated to think for themselves.

As the tolling of the bell approached, each member shared their offering; their unique gift of words. The leader would nod and approve of the clever, quirky, humorous, sensitive and wise words that this small and devoted band produced effortlessly each week.

They were known as the Wardell Writers.

If you dare to join them they still meet every Wednesday lunchtime in D 231 in the D’houët building.

-          Sarina Davidson, Jacqueline Crock and Tilly Affley.

Duke of Edinburgh Program

Term Two has been a busy time for many of our Duke of Edinburgh girls as they have been busy planning and completing one of their required Journeys. Our fifteen Silver Duke of Edinburgh girls have just returned from the Journey that saw them begin the first stage of the iconic 80km Great Ocean Walk. Despite adverse weather conditions, the girls enjoyed their experience and challenges they were able to overcome. Below is an account of this Journey:

Arriving bright and early with our bags packed, we all eagerly waited to board the bus to begin our long, yet anticipated Silver Duke of Edinburgh camp along the Great Ocean Walk.

When we arrived at Apollo Bay, we unloaded the bus trailer and removed our goods and transferred them to hiking bags. Along with all our clothes, cutlery and toiletries, we also had to make space to carry all of our food, cleaning buckets, equipment, tents and trangias which we would be using for three days.

After packing through the wind and heavy rain, we finally set off toward Elliot River campsite where we slept the first night. The walk was 9.7km and was very adventurous and consisted of walking through mud and puddles, trying not to trip over sticks which had recently fallen in the strong winds, avoiding the ocean as waves came in close enough to drench some girls up to their knees, as well as lots of group discussions and team navigation.

Although the first night offered plenty of rain, wind and cold temperatures, we all managed to set up our tents and successfully cook, clean up and take in the beautiful scenery around us. The second day consisted of an 11.8km hike through even more remarkable and breathtaking scenery - walking along great heights that allowed for a few superb photo opportunities! We were led through more hills with more awe-inspiring and impressive scenery, where the bush met the ocean and our eyes admired what we saw.

After yet another fun-filled, exuberant day, we made our way to our second campsite, Blanket Bay after finishing the hike with a quick run across the beach to avoid the water. The second campsite allowed us to hear the waves crashing as we watched the moon rise with many stars filling the night sky. We also experience the sun rise and light up the sky at 7am.

On the last day, our group made the smart plan the night before to pack our bags, have breakfast ready and tidy the camp so that we could leave by 8am to arrive in Cape Otway by midday. Our plan was successful and we found that many breaks were required on the way back because of the energy we had spent on the first two days; however, we managed to hike the last 10.3km in time to make it to Cape Otway and have lunch before yet another lot of rain swept over us.

When we arrived back at Genazzano, we unloaded the trailer and it wasn’t long before nearly every girl had urged their parents to bring them home as quickly as possible so that they could have a hot shower and an early night.

The Apollo Bay - Cape Otway Great Ocean Walk was great fun and threw many new adventures and challenges at us, yet we all managed to cope by using our ambitious attitudes and optimism (even when our tents flooded or we got extremely wet from running through knee-deep rivers)!

-          Lucy Pearse 10G


2015 Term Dates

Term 2

Friday 19 June                                   Last day of Term              


Term 3

Monday 13 July                                 Staff and Students return

Thursday 17 September                                Last day of Term


Term 4

Monday 5 October                          Staff and students return

Friday 4 December                          Last day of Term

Friday 11 December                        Teaching staff and Category B staff conclude

Friday 18 December                        Category C staff conclude

Wednesday 23 December            Category A staff conclude


2016 Term Dates

Term 1 (8 weeks)


Monday 25 January

All staff return

Tuesday 26 January

Australia Day Holiday

Friday 29 January

New students commence

Monday 1 February

All students commence

Wednesday 10 February

Ash Wednesday

Wednesday 23 March

Students finish

Thursday 24 March

Holy Thursday - Staff PL day



Term 2 (10 weeks)


Monday 11 April

Staff and students return

Friday 17 June

Last day of term



Term 3 (10 weeks)


Monday 11 July

Staff return

Tuesday 12 July

Students return

Friday 16 September

Last day of term



Term 4 (9 weeks)


Monday 3 October

Staff and students return

Friday 9 December

Students conclude


GFA News

By Rob Bischof
President, Genazzano Fathers’ Association

With only 4 weeks left till the end of Term 2 the GFA has been busy busy busy…

GFA Talking Careers was held at the College on Monday May 11

Its was great to see such an enthusiastic group of Year 10-12 girls and their parents attend this informal and interactive evening held at the College; the night featured Industry Professionals, including Alumnae, talking about their vocation and career pathway. Special thanks to our GFA champion Mike Ingham for his efforts in making the event such a success – not just on this occasion but over many years Mike has been the driving force behind this event for the GFA, and sadly he will ‘retire’ in this his graduation year. Thanks also to Pete Grounds and Laurie Bertelle for the helping out and for taking the reigns for the GFA Talking Careers in 2016.

Rob Bischof, GFA President from Monash University

A GFA feature meeting was held on Wednesday May 13

A big thank-you to Nathan Hutchings and Aaron McDonald from the College IT team for their presentation covering student and parent IT issues, including BYOD devices, eSmart and all about the IT help desk. A pdf copy of the presentation is available via the GFA tab in GenSpace (

The Year 8 GFA Camp was held last weekend, May 16-17

This was a camp with everything just perfect. A glorious late start on a bright sunny day in Mt Evelyn to fly high, soar amongst the trees, tightrope walking 10 metres off the ground and a short quiet reflection time with our daughters. And that was just the first 3 hours of last weekend’s Year 8 Father Daughter Camp. A total of 76 Dads and daughters trooped up to Mt Evelyn for the weekend. You would be forgiven if you thought that you had actually ended up at an international food festival with the gourmet dinner cooked up by Jordan Pappadopolous and Nicholas Psyhogios, who by the way are not Year 8 dads! Spit roast chicken pork and lamb, homemade pork sausages, teriyaki beef, Maltese chicken wings, homemade pancetta followed by traditional Italian pasta shared after important social events.  Everyone’s tummy was very happy and with the amount of seconds consumed by the girls we know they loved it as much as their dads. Dinner was followed with a great musical trivia night with some very questionable dancing skills from the dads. There was a formal objection when one team accidentally attempted to decapitate our host with a ceiling fan but all ended well with the Sharks winning the night.  We also had 2 special dads who flew back into Australia just for the camp and to spend some time with their daughters and their friends. Having the weekend called the highlight of the year by one pair of them really sums up why these times with our girls, and theirs with their dads are so important. Special thanks to our organising team of James Burnes, Domenico Rotella, Fabio Ramunni, Chris Curtain, Simon Martin, Andrew Verocchi, Reinhard Gregg and Neville Drake. They have definitely set the gastronomic bar very high for future camps.

…. and on that note, there is ONLY 1 WEEK TO GO before the GFA Year 7 Father-daughter camp, to be held at Anglesea over the weekend of May 30-31 – NOT TOO LATE BUT spaces are limited so BOOK NOW at, and don’t miss this chance to be a part of a truly sensational GFA camp - popular, dynamic and guaranteed to bring you closer to your daughter (and wear you out!). 

The Fathers’ Steps is open

Be sure to make a special trip with your daughter to the Fathers’ Steps and spend some quiet time together – it is “all about the girls”, and the Fathers’ Steps is a true gift to our girls of today and tomorrow from all Genazzano Dads, past, present and future.

GFA 2015 Sponsorship Opportunities

The GFA is still seeking Corporate Sponsors through opportunities to broadly promote themselves across the College Community – see the following link for further information and assist the GFA in achieving our aim of "making a difference".

Click here for more info

Are you receiving GFA emails?

There is no better way for the GFA to keep Dads up to date with what is happening - if we are not reaching you THEN PLEASE LET ME KNOW!!! ( and I will add you to the distribution list.

Remember that to be a father is a gift, to be a Gen Dad is a rare privilege that we celebrate by Loving, Laughing and Making a Difference….

GMA News

Debbie O'Halloran
President, Genazzano Mother's Association 

Our very special annual Mothers’ Day Mass and Supper was held on Wednesday evening, May 6. Our College Chaplain, Father Brendan Reed led a very beautiful and moving Mass celebrating motherhood - not just mothers, but those who nurture our girls in maternal ways. We were joined by over 400 mothers, daughters, grandmothers, family members, our College Chair Lindy Priest, Sisters FCJ, members of staff and friends of Genazzano. After the Mass we made our way to the Madeleine Centre for a light supper, hosted by College mothers. Our warmest thanks and appreciation go to all those responsible for bringing together this stunning event. Lisa Scully worked very hard to coordinate the event on behalf of the GMA and also made over 200 gifts given out after Mass. Lila McInerney and her team coordinated on behalf of the College and of course were instrumental in putting together the beautiful Mass in our Chapel. Jan Blazejak and Janet Dawson along with our choir provided the beautiful music. Thank you also to Julie Douglas, who gave us her insightful and entertaining Reflections on Motherhood. To the special readers, ministers, servers and others who had a part in the Mass and finally, to all the mothers who prepared our lovely supper, or helped with set up, serving and pack up, we thank you.



The Mothers’ Day Stall was held the following day at Grange Hill. My sincerest thanks to Marisa De Maria, who coordinated the stall along with some Grange Hill mothers.  The gifts were thoughtfully chosen by Marisa and the girls were given a beautiful gift bag to put their purchases in. 


Community News

Sacramental Program for 2015

Our Lady of Good Counsel and All Hallows Parish
Deepdene and Balwyn
Sacramental Program for 2015

Young parishioners of Our Lady of Good Counsel and All Hallows Parish are invited to enrol in the Parish’s Sacramental Program. School aged children are provided with preparation for their reception for the Sacraments of Reconciliation (Year 3), First Eucharist (Year 4) and Confirmation (Year 6). Once the preparation stage has been completed, these young people are presented for the sacrament. These sacraments will be celebrated in the parish this year as follows:

Weekends of 9/10 May, 16/17 May and 23/24 May
(Catechist Preparation Program commences Friday 20 March) 

Sunday 13 September
(Catechist Preparation Program commences Friday, 31 July)

Tuesday 10 November and Thursday 12 November (Catechist Preparation Program commences Friday 9 October)

Please visit the parish website at and complete the relevant online enrolment form or contact Tricia Norman on 9816 9291 or for more details.  Please note that the Sacramental Program is open to those families who reside within the parish boundaries.