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Monday, 28 February 2011
Page: 1698

Mr NEUMANN (10:58 AM) —On Friday, 4 February 2011, I had the pleasure of attending the opening mass and induction of leaders of St Mary’s College at St Mary’s Catholic Church in Ipswich in my electorate of Blair. Father Peter Casey presided. St Mary’s College is a Catholic secondary college committed to the education of young women in the Mercy tradition. There were representatives of the Sisters of Mercy present to show their respect and longstanding interest in the school. In 2008 the federal Labor government provided $3.9 million in general recurrent grants to the school and the school received $200,000 under the Building the Education Revolution for a new shade structure, external refurbishment of painting and ICT equipment.

The school accepts girls from year 8 through to year 12, and the approximate enrolment is about 650 students. Its catchment is Ipswich and the rural areas, particularly in the suburban areas around Woodend, Coalfalls and Sadliers Crossing. St Mary’s College was established by the Sisters of Mercy in 1863 as part of St Mary’s Parish. The Sisters of Mercy left in the early 1990s, and the college is now run and owned by the parish and administered and staffed by Brisbane Catholic Education. The college is currently undergoing a minor transformation and it is well led by the principal, Ms Diedre Anderson, who extends her dedication and commitment to the school to the greater Ipswich community; and her deputy, Mr Paul Wruck, a compassionate and committed school leader who has been involved in the Ipswich community for a long time.

St Mary’s Church is one of the icons of Ipswich and a trademark that everyone recognises. It is one of the pictures that people come to Ipswich to take. It is the epicentre of the Catholic faith and it provides its students with spiritual education as the students receive education through the actual college itself. The college offers a holistic approach to education and it really does turn out young women of integrity. It has been doing so for nearly 150 years. I want to congratulate College Captain Molly Rossetto, College Vice Captains Chantel Phillips and Madison Sowden, College Mission Captain Emma Morgan, College Cultural Captain Krystal Spark, College Sports Captain Tayla Rosin, Gorry House Captain Stephanie Wright, Horan House Captain Cassie Seppanen, Murphy House Captain Theresa King and Whitty House Captain Brooke Carroll. I congratulate Molly on her wonderful sermon on the Mercy tradition and what the school means to her, her fellow year 12s and the Ipswich community. St Mary’s is a wonderful institution. I congratulate the school leaders and know they are in good hands with Ms Anderson and Mr Wruck as the principal and vice principal. (Time expired)

The DEPUTY SPEAKER (Hon. Peter Slipper)—Order! In accordance with standing order 193 the time for constituency statements has concluded.