Principal's Post

Term 3 Start-Up Messages

 It is so good to be back!


Dear Parents and Caregivers,


Welcome back to Term 3! I know, crazy how quickly time passes. It feels like only a few weeks ago I was here at St Columba’s thinking about my long service leave. I appreciate how busy school life has been throughout the first semester and how much everyone has worked to get through some very trying times as a school community, but also in their own lives and the complexity around an ever-changing world.

Being away on leave and taking time to find space to be has been a good thing for me as a human. Clearly, it also allowed me a time of reflection where I have been able to make the difficult decision to leave my life as a principal at the end of this year. The thing is, for those of you I have known for the last five years, is that we all knew this day would come for me. Yes, it is sooner than I had hoped, but it is the right thing. I still love our people of St Col’s, I just know that after 19 years as a principal, my time is complete. What I can say is that I have had the best of times and the best life as a principal. It is impossible to put into words my gratitude to every person I have met along the way. Whether in the good times, or the not so good times, there is so much I am grateful for. For every moment, I say thank you.

This semester, is about returning to complete my leadership journey in schools, with my St Col’s people. I feel privileged to be able to do this with you. It will be a time for me to give back for all I have received along the way. I seriously feel like I am 25 years old again. I am so excited to see the kids and get to see how much they have grown in my time away. I mean, how good do I have it to be able to spend these six months encouraging them to be the best they can be? We have already booked an 8.50 am assembly with them next Monday.

You know my first question will be, ‘Who is the luckiest principal on the planet?’ You know their response, ‘You.’ Then I will ask them, ‘Why?’ and they will respond with, ‘because you have us!’ and it is as simple as that. Never think I am not blessed! Imagine having 500 kids know that they are the reason I am the luckiest principal in the world. How can I be anything but excited to be back?

One of my learnings from my time of being is about ‘filling buckets’. It will change your life and the lives of others. Below is a quote from Denzel Washington that reflects this concept.

Simply put, filling buckets is about making others days better. It is about acknowledging the good in others, about encouraging and finding the positives. It can be as simple as saying good morning when you walk past someone today. Here is a challenge. What if everyone of us here at St Col’s, when walking by someone that we make eye contact and say ‘good morning’. I know, sounds ridiculous, but I think about how many people I will walk past on Monday at school, and how many times I will not say anything. Why is that? Am I worried they will not say good morning back. Will they just ignore me. As I may not know who they are, will they think something weird about why I would say good morning. Imagine being someone who comes to St Col’s walking through our playground, passing twenty other people and no one saying good morning, but imagine the opposite, if as we walked by there was a barrage of good mornings and a smile.

Hey, I get that there are days we just want to hide and get in and out because it is just one of those days. All I am saying, is how about we try it, or not, up to each of us. You will change people’s lives, you will fill their bucket with this simple act. I am going to talk to staff and our kids about this as soon as I get back next week. We do know, filling others buckets, fills our own. We will all feel so good.

We can also be ‘bucket dippers’. This is where we keep dipping into others buckets, emptying their buckets. We do this by excluding others, not being welcoming, finding fault and blaming others. While I get this is all part of life, I mean I do go down this path at times, it is not what we want to stand for. When we do become critical of others and only see the faults and not the good, we do not live a fulfilled life ourselves. When dipping into their buckets, we also empty our own. Just part of being human I guess. The challenge is to have an awareness of when we dip. I have spoken about embracing imperfection. We need to be gentle on others and on ourselves when we go through these experiences. We are all living during times that are a little out of sync. We can get the sync back, but it relies on everyone one of us. Since when did we stop cutting others slack for their imperfections? Are you up for it?

You will change the lives of others. You are inspiring because you are a St Col’s person. Get out there and make the world around you a better place.


Sandro Coniglio – What a champion bloke!

How blessed have we been to have Sandro leading our school community during the first semester. Unprecedented times in schools with the impact of COVID on human resource management and teaching and learning. You know my belief that God places us where we are meant to be. Sandro was meant to be here. Sandro and I are like brothers, so for me to know he was here caring for you, well, that allowed me to take my time of leave knowing your wellbeing and the wellbeing of our kids and staff was always going to be the priority. Sandro is a remarkable person and leader. He will be missed around St Col’s, which is such a credit to the impact he has had during his time as principal. Sandro now moves to focus on commencing a new school, Emmaus Catholic Primary School in Dayton. May he and his community be blessed in abundance with goodness their way.

I also wish to thank all our staff and families for your support of Sandro, but also of each other during the busy routines of the day, made even more complex with COVID-19. While I have missed so much of this high octane management, you have all worked together to get through.


Staffing News

Peta Santella, our finance officer, will be moving to a new position at Loreto School, Nedlands. Peta has been with us here at St Columba’s for the past nine years. During this time, Peta has worked closely with many of our families in assisting with the financial management of our school. Peta’s genuine care for our families and staff is appreciated, and will be greatly missed when she moves to Loreto. Peta has worked closely with our CSAC and CSPWA to manage the finances of our school, putting many systems and processes in place to meet the ever-changing world of school operations. It is with excitement that Peta moves in a new direction from here. Peta will be with us for the first week of Term 3, but will be moving to Loreto from Week 2 onwards. Janine Witherow, who has been working alongside Peta, will take over the role for Term 3. Peta deserves many good things her way as she moves down a new career path into the future. A wonderful person, with a big heart, that will be an asset to the Loreto School community. We know Peta will always hold the St Col’s people close to her and will always find an excuse to pop back in to see us. In gratitude for all you have committed to us here at St Columba’s School.

Tammy Mostamandi, Year 1, White Teacher, Semester 2. We warmly welcome Tammy to our St Columba’s School community. I know everyone will take very good care of Tammy, as Tammy will with our students and their families. Tammy is replacing Clare Wright who will be away on leave for the next six months. We very much look forward to having Tammy with us, while also wishing Clare a wonderful time of rest and relaxation during her time of leave.


Building Program

A big thank you to our Catholic School Advisory Council [CSAC] for their management of the building program. The construction of the lower classroom covered areas are being completed during the holiday break this week. I imagine much flexibility and understanding has been required during the construction period. I also know, St Col’s people would have adjusted and worked through the ‘messy’ parts of the program schedule. It is just how we all roll here, especially with the OSHC during this break. It has been a long process of building the funds to be able to cover the costs for the project during the past five years. On behalf of the CSAC, I thank everyone for their support in enabling us to complete this project and the patience that was required in getting to this point where we have a space for students and staff to use throughout the year. I wish to acknowledge the work of our architects, Site Architects, and the building company, Sanpro Construction.


School Oval Resurfacing

Knowing we were entering a phase of construction, we have held off major works on the school oval for the last couple of years. It is with excitement we can reveal that when our students arrive on Monday morning, the school oval will have been resurfaced with jumbo rolls of lawn that can be played on immediately. Everyone has been outstanding in their understanding of our programming and scheduling to get these works completed at this point in time. The support of CSPWA and the commitment of our CSAC to always remain focused on what is best for our students, we now get to enjoy an oval that is fully grassed. Significant funds have been contributed from the CSPWA to enable this project to be completed. In gratitude, for the difference this will make to the playing surface of the oval. Our kids will be so excited, as will our staff, and I am sure you will be as parents.


Interschool Cross Country Team

Congratulations to all our students who will be competing in the upcoming interschool cross-country event on Tuesday 26 July at the UWA Sports Park, Mount Claremont. I wish to thank Mr Dylan Banks for his coordination of the events in the lead up to the interschool competition. Dylan has organised for our St Col’s team to do a trial run through next Friday 22 July at the UWA Sports Park. We will take the students by bus at 9.45 am for a run through to shake off any nerves in the lead up to Tuesday week. Dylan will send a note through to parents on Monday to inform you of details regarding this run through. I appreciate Dylan looking into this possibility of a run through, as many students would not have competed in this event previously. Again, congratulations to all students involved in making the team. There will also be a breakfast held for the team on Friday morning 22 July. We thank in advance those parents who are able to assist on the morning of the breakfast. Details regarding this will be out Monday.


School Community Climate Survey

In Week 3 of this term, we will be sending out details of a survey for parents to complete. This will be managed by Niall Kehoe, our Assistant Principal. The data from the survey will then be analysed and reviewed at a school and system level. We encourage all our families to complete the survey, as the data will serve as a valuable resource in our future planning.


Principal Appointment Process

Early next week, the position of Principal, St Columba’s School, Bayswater, will be advertised externally. This is an exciting time for our school community. St Columba’s is such a special place to be. I know the Catholic School Advisory Council, along with CEWA, will find someone very special to lead you into the future. I am looking forward to working closely with the incoming principal to ensure a smooth transition into 2023. St Col’s always finds the right person for that moment in time. We will keep you updated on the appointment process during the term. CEWA are hoping to appoint by the end of August, early September.


Year 6 Confirmation Enrolment and Community Mass

On Saturday 6 August, our Year 6 students will commit to their preparation for the Sacrament of Confirmation. This Mass will be held at 6.00 pm and doubles as a school Community Mass. We would love to see as many families as possible attend this Mass to give thanks for all the goodness we receive here at St Columba’s School.


Year 6 Confirmation Interactive Workshop

Please note a change of date for the Confirmation Interactive Workshop. It will now take place on Tuesday 23 August (not Tuesday 30 August as previously advertised).


School Photos

School photos are scheduled for the week 3, Monday 1 August, Tuesday 2 August and Thursday 4 August.  refer to the Term Planner notice that will be sent home in the coming week.

Early in term 3 every student will receive a personalised flyer to bring home from Kapture Photography containing your child’s unique codes for ordering school photos online.


The unique codes contained on the flyer will be issued only once.

Please refer to flyer attached to this newsletter.


Kiss and Drive

As with the start of Term, please remember that Kiss and Drive is a high volume traffic area between the times of 8.15 am – 8.40 am and 2.50 pm-3.10 pm. We are on duty in the afternoon till 3.20 pm, so feel free to delay coming through Kiss and Drive until 3.10-3.20 pm. We do get how everyone wants to collect at 3.00 pm, but spreading out the collection of our students will alleviate some of the traffic congestion. There is no easy solution to this. While we loved the K and D on Milne, that was only allowed on a temporary basis for 2020 and 2021 due to COVID. That is no longer possible in 2022. As staff, we love being out on Kiss and Drive. Please continue to be respectful of all other parents and staff during these busy times. You are outstanding at this, and the smiles we see, even during times of frustration out there, is something we all appreciate. I guess this is the ‘filling the buckets of others’ opportunity in your day. One reminder is to avoid blocking the roundabout, as this is something we are contacted about continuously throughout the year. We get this is problematic at times. I have missed the adrenaline rush of Kiss and Drive in the afternoons.


School Assemblies Semester 2

On Friday 29 July, we are planning to hold a whole school assembly. This was scheduled for the 22 July, please note the change. It will be a general assembly to gather as a school. Please note, that as with all events, we may need to change and postpone such events due to any COVID recommendations. This continues to be an ever-changing dynamic. Therefore, we are planning for parents to be in attendance at events such as Book Week Parade, however such protocols may change. We know you understand this is now part of school life and COVID.


Term 3 Planner

The updated Term 3 Planner is on the school website under the Parent Information tab. Please be aware that there are changes to the planner throughout the year. These will be highlighted in the Donegal as required. For example, there will be a change to the planner for the Book Week Parade due to a Performing Arts Choir performance.


School Uniform

As with the commencement of every term, we remind all our parents of the uniform expectations. Please communicate with your child’s teacher if there are any circumstances that result in your child not being in the correct inform. This is very much appreciated. My all-time favourite, is making sure our students have their shirts tucked in after their play breaks. It shows they have respect for their uniform and being a St Col’s Kid.


As we return for Term 3, I am looking forward to seeing everyone again, and reconnecting with our new families and students who the last time I would have seen, was at parent meetings for PK and Kindy way back in October 2021. Apologies if I forget your names as I have become a little lazy with all of that. Good times ahead. Look after yourself, care for self and others, and gentleness is the key to getting back into the routines of school.


PS: It has been a good time to be away as North Melbourne are continuing to thrive at holding up the AFL from the basement. Still love our Roo Boys! Congrats to all the West Coast Fever fans out there. What a terrific performance in the GF.

In gratitude



P & F News

Entertainment Memberships

Online memberships are available again this year.  Memberships can be purchased online



We have had queries from families who would like to make a contribution to the CSPWA without being involved in purchasing items. This is incredibly generous, and we are always grateful for any donations in whatever form they take.

The CSPWA bank details are below and can be used at anytime to pay online for fundraisers or for contributions. We ask that you include a family name in the description so that we can allocate funds coming into the account

Name – The Roman Catholic Archbishop of Perth, St Columba’s P&F Association

BSB – 086 006

ACC – 679360271


The next meeting is on Tuesday 16 August at 7.00pm.


Any questions or queries, I can be contacted via email

Tanya Armstrong

President CSPWA





Together we’re making a difference

At Pharmacy 777, your support makes a difference to your school.
We understand how much your school means to you, that’s why at Pharmacy 777, we’re passionate about making a difference. Our Community Spirit Program makes giving back to your school easier. As a Community Spirit member, for every transaction you make at Pharmacy 777 Bayswater and Maylands, they will give part proceeds back to the school. This contribution accumulates over time and funds raised support causes at the heart of your school. We would encourage all school community members to visit Pharmacy 777 Bayswater and Maylands and join up.

Library News


Library 2022


A warm invitiation is extended to ALL families to visit the library from 8:15am in the mornings Monday – Friday.  

(If Mrs Cuthbert is unavailable, the library will be closed) 


Pre-primary, Kindy & Pre-Kindy families take advantage and come and read all our fabulous picture books with your little ones till 8:45am. 


The library is a calming and quiet place, making it the perfect spot for students to have a smooth and calming transition in the morning.

Students may like to return and borrow books before school.

Looking forward to seeing you the library.



Reading and activities in the LIBRARY


Students may also use this time to exchange their library book.







Homework/Library Bag    

Just a reminder that students require the school green

‘Homework and Library Bag’ in order to borrow from the Library.

Many students will already have the green school

‘’Homework and Library Bag’ from previous years.

‘Homework and Library Bags’ can be purchased

from the Uniform Shop at a cost of $10.



The library has lots of books needing covering. If you can help by taking a small number of books home to cover, please advise the library. Your help is greatly appreciated by staff and students. 








Rita Cuthbert – Library Officer – Library- the original search engine

Community Notices

Columba Runners

We have had an amazing start to the season with over 100 students signed up for Columba Runners so far. We are still welcoming members, even if you can only make one of the sessions a week. Sessions are held at Frank Drago oval 3.10-4.10pm on Mondays and Wednesdays. Cost is $30 per child, parents can join free! Prizes awarded based on total kilometers achieved over both terms, including those brave enough parents! Please complete the online registration.

This club is run by volunteers. Any parents who are able to attend and assist with marking laps and encouraging everyone, we would love to have you. Those attending OSHC are also considered, please chat to the lovely Jess.

If your child is in Yr 2 and below, they must be accompanied by a parent or older sibling. It is the responsibility of the parent/caregiver to ensure the safety of the students between school and Frank Drago.








Founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1846, Mercedes College offers young women from Year 7 to 12 an outstanding Catholic education based on the Mercy values. Located in the heart of Perth’s beautiful heritage precinct, the College is the oldest all girls’ school in Australia, still on the original site of foundation. Its mix of heritage and modern facilities offers students a unique learning environment in a dynamic city setting.

 On Tuesday 6 September our gates will open to the prospective families for our Open Day Tour, which presents the opportunity to speak with members of the Senior Leadership Team, Heads of Department, and key Teachers. Enjoy a tour of College facilities led by some of our students, with two sessions available, 8.30am and 11am. To experience first-hand why learning in the city will benefit your daughter’s education, please book into a session of your choice at















St Columba’s School Bayswater

32 Roberts Street, Bayswater WA 6053
PO Box 61, Bayswater WA 6933
Phone: (08) 9208 2700