Principal Reflections

A Short Message from Dr Jake

Dear Parents & Friends, 

Vale Gary McSweeney

As many of you may already know, Gary passed away last Saturday afternoon after a long and courageous battle with cancer. Gary's legacy includes his dedication and contribution to Catholic education and school sports in the Diocese of Armidale, as well as his ability to identify great teachers and future leaders, mentor them, and help them move into leadership roles. He was a well-known and popular figure in the city of Tamworth, where he served as the Principal of our school for 26 years. Gary's commitment and contribution to school sports were truly impressive, and he was much-loved by students, teachers and principals and parents. 


As our Diocesan Director, Mr Chris Smyth, wrote in this week's CSO eBulletin, "Gary was a great person, a great teacher, a great leader, a great bloke and a great mate to many." 


He will be greatly missed by his family, friends, colleagues and the wider community.


Many of our staff will be attending his funeral tomorrow (Friday 17th March) to pay our respects. We do ask that if you are able, please collect your child/ren for an early dismissal at 12:00 noon tomorrow to assist the school, as minimal supervision will be provided. Please collect your child/ren from their classrooms. Please also note there will be no canteen lunch orders available tomorrow, Friday 17th March.

Gary enjoying St Patrick's day with students
Gary enjoying St Patrick's day with students

Parent Learning Walk

We would like to express our gratitude to all those who attended the Parent Learning Walk at the Infants Campus on Tuesday. We truly appreciated the opportunity to showcase our classroom practices and discuss ways in which we are working to improve student learning.


During our walks, we discussed the types of activities we use in the classroom to promote active engagement and problem-solving. Rather than relying solely on passive learning experiences like lectures, we aim to create opportunities for students to apply their learning in hands-on, interactive ways. This approach helps students better understand and retain information, as well as build skills that are essential for success in the real world.


Additionally, we emphasised the importance of creating a supportive learning environment that minimises distractions and interruptions. By ensuring that students can focus on the material presented to them, we can help them engage more deeply with the subject matter and achieve better learning outcomes.


We believe that by sharing our classroom practices and discussing these important principles with you, we can work together to improve student learning. We appreciate your continued support in your child's education and look forward to continued collaboration throughout the school year.

Thank you again for attending our Parent Learning Walk and for your ongoing support.


Should you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us as we are only too happy to help.


Peace & Best Wishes






Dr Jake Madden

(Principal, St Edward's Primary School)