|This article does not cite any references or sources. (July 2008)|
|Geelong West, Victoria, Australia|
|Type||Independent, Roman Catholic, Secondary|
|Motto||Latin: Fortiter et Suaviter
(Strength and Kindliness)
Founded and owned by the Brigidine Sisters in 1956, Clonard College draws its rich heritage from the traditions of Brigidine order.
In 2010, Damian McKew was appointed Principal after spending four and a half years as Principal of Trinity College Colac.
Clonard - as a school - came into existence (officially) in 1856. At the invitation of Father John Tresidder (Manifold Parish Priest), the Brigidine Sisters acquired the Clonard property and retained the name "Clonard" because of the association between Saint Brigid and Saint Finnian of Clonard in fifth century Ireland. There was a crisis in Catholic education at the time as Sacred Heart, Geelong's only Catholic college, was severely overcrowded.
Early in 1956, a group of founder sisters, including the much lauded Sister Lelia Grant, began taking classes at Clonard. In its initial year, Clonard College boasted 40 students.
Clonard College was officially opened on February 9, 1958.
Key moments in the College's development included the simultaneous construction of an assembly hall and library, in 1977, partly funded by the first Federal grant. In 1983, Mr John Shannon became the first full-time lay Principal. In the late 1990s Clonard's leadership followed the example of some other Brigidine schools in adopting Co Principalship model when Mrs Vicki Myers (a former Clonard student) joined Mr Michael Doyle in the Co Principal positions.
The late 1990s and early part of the 21st century saw revitalised enrolment growth, accommodated by expansive building programs, delivering a theatre, design education centre, materials technology room, expanded office space, refurbished science facilities, a gymnasium and multi purpose court within the school grounds.
In 2006 Clonard celebrated its 50th anniversary with a range of functions involving past students and key founders. The year of celebration reached its peak with the Anniversary Dinner at Kardinia Park and concluded with the 2006 Celebration of Achievement Evening at Costa Hall, whose theme reflected 50 years of achievement in the name of Clonard.
In physical terms, the College's expansion and development continued with the opening of the newly built two-storey Year 12 Center, containing a number of modern and flexible learning areas and office spaces on its upper floor and the large "Independent Learning Centre", beneath, dedicated to serving the particular personal and academic needs of the College's Year 12 girls.
Early in 2008, the year 7 rooms along Church Street were demolished to allow construction of a modern, two-storey Year 7 Centre, equipped with a range of sustainability technologies. The Year 7 Learning Centre was officially opened on 24 April 2009.
In November 2012, it was announced that Clonard College had purchased part of the former Western Heights Secondary College (Minerva Campus). In 2013, the College has embarked on a major building project with the construction of a new Yr. 8 & 9 Centre, along with the demolition and refurbishment of the Minerva road campus.
Clonard's sister schools
There are eight sister schools to Clonard in Australia that also follow the Brigidine Order:
- St. Joseph's College, Echuca, Victoria (1886)
- Marian College, Ararat, Victoria (1889)
- Brigidine College, Randwick, New South Wales (1901)
- Kilbreda College, Mentone (1904)
- Killester College, Springvale, Victoria (1955)
- Marian College, Sunshine West, Victoria (1958)
- Kildare College, Holden Hill, South Australia (1966)
- Brigidine College, St Ives, New South Wales (1954)
and JMW 2012
- List of schools in Victoria
- Victorian Certificate of Education
- Vocational Education and Training
- Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning