St Michael’s is a co-educational parish school in the beautiful leafy village of Old Berwick. It has a school population of 430 students. The school operates 21 classes with specialist classes conducted in the Performing Arts, Visual Arts, Physical Education and LOTE-Japanese.
Established in 1962 under the guidance of the Presentation Sisters the school now caters for children within the St Michael’s Parish and serves families who wish to be educated in an environment where Catholic Faith and values are lived and experienced within an educational setting. At St Michael’s, the spiritual development of the children based on a faith centred education is why the school exists. Our students are our inspiration and our reason to be. Guided in their faith by the Scriptures our students live out their Christian way of ‘being’ in their world – nurtured to be Christ-centred people.
St Michael’s is an authentically Catholic learning community that is dedicated to providing the very best opportunities for our children. It is a place where academic rigour is developed through rich relationships, deep integrity, lifelong learning and extraordinary care for its children. There is a commitment to whole school improvement and an enthusiasm in approaching the many new initiatives and increasingly complex demands of learning in a contemporary environment.
Within this context, the heart of the school is a sense of community that is highly valued by the school’s families. St Michael’s works to promote a respectful community that nurtures pastoral and personal awareness for all its members and works to ensure that St Michael’s is an open, welcoming place of learning and living. The school gives high priority to maintaining a safe, secure environment where all children experience a sense of belonging. Parents are valued as active participants in the education process of their children.
St Michael’s is blessed to have a close, nurturing, effective staff who work tirelessly to ensure that the education of their students is purposeful and engaging. There is a total staff of 52, including principal, 18 full-time and 16 part-time teachers, 13 non-teaching staff, including 2 administration officers, 8 education support officers, 1 library technician, 1 maintenance officer and canteen officer. Shared values and beliefs about learning and learners are evident. Staff value collaborative practices within learning teams where they share ideas and support each other to improve their teaching and learning and for the benefit of their students. Classroom teaching provides flexible and adaptable approaches and strategies to enable students to construct meaning and build understandings. Our educators place students at the centre of the learning process. They share the belief that effective learning takes place when positive relationships are developed in an atmosphere that balances challenge with support. There is a whole of staff approach to managing issues which ensures that every effort is made for each student to enjoy success as they grow and develop within our supportive school community.
St Michael’s uses the Victorian Curriculum to provide a single, coherent and comprehensive set of prescribed content and common achievement standards. St Michael’s plans learning programs, assesses student progress and reports to parents based on this curriculum. The learning environment of St Michael’s truly supports the academic growth of its students. Students have the opportunity to take responsibility for their learning and utilise appropriate learning technologies to support their learning.
St Michael’s is a learning-focused, faith community that is united in its diversity and committed to a culture of discovery; a collaborative community where personal excellence is prized, where creative thought, word and action are nourished, where paths to success are varied and where positive relationships thrive.
St Michael’s Parish Church is beside school grounds. This is critically important to our liturgical and social celebrations and gives us many opportunities to enhance and grow our identity and sense of community.
The educational journey of St Michael’s Parish Primary School is one of transformation – a journey through which we are changed, those around us are changed and our world is changed. The Gospel of Jesus Christ nurtures us for our journey and we are challenged by the words of John’s Gospel ‘If you continue in my Word you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.’