St Catherine's School, Toorak
|St Catherine's School, Toorak|
|Type||Independent, day & boarding school|
|Motto||Latin: Nil Magnum Nisi Bonum|
(Nothing is great unless it is good)
|Colour(s)||Blue, gold and grey|
|Slogan||One of Australia's finest since 1896|
Established in 1896 as Castlemaine Ladies' College, the school has a non-selective enrolment policy and currently caters for approximately 730 students from pre-school to Year 12, including 80 boarders, on a 2.9 hectare campus. Boarding students come to St Catherine's from country Victoria, interstate and overseas.
St Catherine's is a member of the Junior School Heads Association of Australia (JSHAA), the Alliance of Girls' Schools Australasia, the Association of Independent Schools of Victoria (AISV), the Australian Boarding Schools Association, and a founding member of Girls Sport Victoria (GSV).
At the instigation of Henry Langley, the first Anglican Bishop of Bendigo, his daughters, Ruth, Aphra and Nona took over the school in 1903. The Langley sisters later changed the school's name to Castlemaine Girls' College, and in 1911 to St Catherine's Girls College, Castlemaine, after the Anglican school St Catherine's School at Waverley in Sydney, where Ruth and Nona Langley had been educated. St Catherine's was a nominally Anglican school at this time in its history.
In 1920, St Catherine's School moved to Williams Road in Melbourne, where 48 pupils were enrolled. Ruth Langley had been joined in 1919 by Flora Templeton, who came as co-principal from Blair School, at St Georges Road, Toorak, with her students.
In 1922, St Catherine's Grammar School had 80 students, and in need of more accommodation, Langley and Templeton purchased "Kilbride House", formerly known as "Beaulieu", at 17 Heyington Place, Toorak. The building was ultimately renamed "Sherren House" in recognition of Ruby Lawrence (née Sherren), who was the schools matron from 1923 to 1946. Flora Templeton died in 1931, but Ruth Langley continued the administration of the school, appointing Edna Holmes as headmistress. After Langley's death, at St Catherine's, on 17 December 1933, her sister, Hilda Langley, became principal.
In 1942, World War II saw the school buildings requisitioned as a residence for the Women's Auxiliary Australian Air Force (WAAAF]]. St Catherine's found a temporary home at Mountain Grand, Warburton, and returned to Heyington Place in 1943. In 1944, Sophie Borland was appointed headmistress and worked with Hilda Langley as principal until the end of 1947, when the trustee of the late Ruth Langley decided to hand control of the school to a council. The first chairman of the council was the Right Reverend John McKie, Bishop in Geelong.
In 1950, Mary Davis was appointed as principal and headmistress. In 1957, Hilda Langley died, ending the Langley family's long association with the school. R. Ann Baylis served as principal from 1971–77 and her two daughters attended the school. In 1977, Dorothy Pizzey was appointed to this post.
St Catherine's School is located on a single 2.9 hectare campus, in suburban Toorak, 6 km south-east of the Melbourne city centre. The school comprises the Early Learning Centre, the Junior School and the Senior School.
St Catherine's offers a music program with an extensive classroom curriculum and instrumental program, a range of opportunities for both individual and ensemble performance are available.
- Classroom music
Classroom music forms a part of the core curriculum from the Early Learning Centre through to Year 8. Girls of all ages are encouraged to learn an instrument and to join the choirs, ensembles, orchestras and bands which rehearse and perform regularly.
In Years 7 and 8, students develop music appreciation, performance skills and explore a wide variety of music technology programs available through our keyboard laboratory.
From Year 9 onwards, music becomes an elective and VCE subject with emphases on developing performance, composition and analysis skills.
- Instrumental program
All students have the opportunity to learn a stringed instrument in Year 2, recorder in Year 3 and 4, and a brass or woodwind instrument in Year 5. These small group lessons allow students a "hands-on" experience including opportunities to perform throughout the year.
The school also offers a comprehensive Instrumental Program in all instrument families (including string, woodwind, brass, voice, percussion and keyboard instruments) where students learn with specialist teachers in classical and contemporary styles. Individual tuition from specialist staff is available for violin, viola, cello, double bass, flute, clarinet, oboe, bassoon, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, horn, trumpet, trombone, tuba, piano, harpsichord, recorder, classical singing, jazz singing, guitar, harp, percussion, music theory.
- Choirs and ensembles
The ensemble program provides ensemble opportunities from classical to contemporary. The list of ensembles includes choirs, orchestras, concert bands, string, woodwind, brass and percussion ensembles, chamber groups and contemporary groups.
The Epstein Singers, àBeckett Strings, Junior Concert Band, Suzuki ‘Cellos, Suzuki Violins, Flute group, Percussion and recorderensemble, Chamber ensembles, The Langley Singers – Prep to Year 2, Heyington Choir – Years 3 and 4 Choir, Barbreck Choir – Years 5 and 6 Choir,
Jorgensen Orchestra, Senior School Concert Band, Soul Power, Sherren Singers, Chamber flutes, Years 7–12 choir, Viva Voci, Stage band, Brass ensemble, Percussion ensemble, Years 7 and 8 concert band, Years 7 and 8 flute ensemble, and small chamber ensembles
An extensive performance program enables all students to participate in a wide variety of concerts and recitals including the annual gala concert, twilight concert, instrumental recitals, Barbreck Concert, Barbreck recitals, masterclasses, jazz cabaret evenings and music theatre performances. Students also perform at the school's church services, speech nights, assemblies and many other school events both at school and in the community.
Alumnae of St Catherine's School are known as "Old Girls" and may elect to join the schools' alumni association, the St Catherine's Old Girls' Association Inc. Some notable St Catherine's Old Girls' include:
- Margaret Loch Kiddle – historian (also attended Melbourne Girls Grammar School)
- Alison Patrick (née Hamer) – historian and first female Head of History at Melbourne University
- Susan Richardson – Professor of Labour Economics and Director of the National Institute of Labour Studies at Flinders University; Commissioner, Essential Services Commission of South Australia; Author (also attended Preshil)
- Natalie Bloom – Owner and Founder of Bloom (Cosmetics); Victorian Young Australian of the Year 1997
- Margaret Florence Darling AM (née Anderson) – Company Director; Grazier; Former Patron of the Australian Garden Historical Society; Former Vice-President of the National Trust of Australia (Vic.); Attained rank of Third Officer in the Women's Royal Australian Naval Service
- Sandra Forbes – Arts and Publishing Consultant; Editor of the 'TAASA Review'; Former Executive Officer of the Literature Program Australia Council; Former Member of the Australian National Commission for UNESCO
- Sophie Holt – Granddaughter of former Prime Minister Harold Holt and Country Road fashion designer
- Merran Kelsall – Chairman, Auditing and Assurance Standards Board, Public Transport Industry Ombudsman (Victoria) and Professional Indemnity Insurance Company Australia Pty Limited; Director, Melbourne Water Corporation and Cuscal Ltd; Trustee of the National Gallery of Victoria
- Felicity Jane Singleton AM – Managing Director of Jane Singleton Public Affairs Pty Ltd; CEO of the Australian Reproductive Health Alliance
- Community and philanthropy
- Lady Anna Cowen – Former President of the World Education Fellowship (Queensland); Wife of former Governor-General, Sir Zelman Cowen (also attended Shelford Girls' Grammar)
- Dame Elisabeth Murdoch AC DBE – Philanthropist, widow of Australian newspaper publisher Sir Keith Murdoch and mother of international media proprietor Rupert Murdoch
- Jill Reichstein – Chair of the Reichstein Foundation; Helped establish the first women's refuge in Victoria; Developed community childcare for the City of Brunswick; Co-ordinated Victorian Cooperative of Children's Services for Ethnic Groups; Past President and a Board Member of Philanthropy Australia
- Lady Marigold Merlyn Baillieu Southey AC – Lieutenant Governor of Victoria; President of the St Catherine's School Foundation; Director of the Myer Foundation; Former Director of the Myer Family Company; Recipient of the Centenary Medal 2003; Daughter of Sidney Baevski Myer and Dame Margery Merlyn Baillieu Myer
- Pamela Myer Warrender – Author; Honorary Life Member, Committee for Melbourne; Founder and former Director of the Committee for Melbourne; Former Chairman of the Museum of Modern Art and Design Australia; Daughter of Sir Norman Myer
- Entertainment, media and the arts
- Celia Ann Burrell AM – Author, Illustrator, Photographer; Director of El Questro Publishing
- Ann Rachel Church – Set and costume designer
- Anne Elder – Ballet dancer and Poet; Namesake of the Anne Elder Award (Prefect and Dux 1936)
- Diane Holuigue – [OAM] Teacher, Chef, Author, Food editor for the Weekend Australian, and Australian Magazine
- Sunday Reed – Supporter and collecter of Australian art and culture; Wife of art editor, John Reed
- Elyne Mitchell (née Chauvel) – Author of acclaimed 'The Silver Brumby' series and other works.
- Lisa Gorton – Poet and author.
- Elizabeth Wallfisch – classical violinist
- Medicine and science
- Joanne Wainer – Social scientist and Senior Lecturer at Monash University School of Rural Health; Helped establish Australia's first publicly acknowledged abortion clinic; Awarded Human Rights award by Amnesty International (Victoria) for work for women's reproductive rights 1999
- Politics, public service and the law
- Her Hon. Judge Jane Campton – Judge of the County Court of Victoria
- Linda Dessau AM – Judge of the Family Court of Australia, AFL Commissioner, Governor of Victoria
- Sophie Mirabella (née Panopoulos) – Liberal MP and Monarchist (also attended Albert Park High School)
- Wendy Wilmoth – County Court judge and former deputy coroner
- Lady April Hamer (née Mackintosh) – Wife of Sir Rupert Hamer, Premier of Victoria
- Mary (Mollie) Clark - first female librarian at Parliament of Victoria (along with Flora Brennan)
- Princess Sharifah Junetta – Daughter of the Paramount Ruler of Malaysia, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong
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