News By Topic

X     Close

P&F News

29 June 2018

Welcome to the latest P&F update.


Kidshotz Photography – Sunday, 26 August 2018

Kidshotz photographers are BACK!  Any family can attend.  You pay $30 to book, which goes to our College, and receive a 30 minute sitting and a 20x25cm group photo. Full details of their services can be found on and a Little Black book with previous family photos is available to view in the Junior Office. To book call 1300 309 776.

The previous year was BOOKED OUT so get in quick as there are only 18 available appointments.

The link to the event is

P&F Morning Coffee - NEW

The P&F team will be holding morning coffee catch ups during term time. With a representative from School attending each week, it’s a great opportunity to keep informed and meet other parents. Venue and dates will be posted on the P&F Facebook group. We hope you can make it.

Crave is back – 15 December 2018

Thanks to those who came along to the volunteers meeting last week. Plans are already underway to make this a memorable event for the community to enjoy. If you would like to get involved then please email the P&F on

Junior Disco

A huge thanks to everyone who helped make this event possible. The children made some superb music requests, which included some 80s and 90s classics.  A few parents were also spotted with an impressive sequence of dance moves too!

Next P&F Meeting

The next P&F meeting is due to be held on Wednesday, 1 August at 7pm in the Junior Staff Room. We would love to see you there.

We hope you enjoy the holidays and thanks again to all the volunteers who helped make P&F events/initiatives possible.

Read more

Darling Downs Readers Cup Challenge

29 June 2018

The Darling Downs Regional Readers’ Cup Competition, Year 5/6 category was recently held at the Glennie Junior School on Tuesday, 19 June.  Readers’ Cup competitions require a team of students to together read a set of books, and then compete with other school teams to answer quiz questions from the books. Students are challenged to read widely, work collaboratively in a team and continue developing their love of reading.

Congratulations to the Mary MacKillop Catholic College team, Tom Fagan, Monique George, Lucy Hutchison and Chelsea Rieck, who participated enthusiastically and achieved an equal top score for the Round 5 question set. The students are commended for the teamwork and commitment that they displayed in preparing for and participating in the competition. Recognition must also go to Kearra Connor who prepared with the team throughout the term, but who was unable to compete on the day.

Special thanks to Mrs Annette Hutchison who provided assistance with transport to the competition.

Read more

Virtual Private Networks

29 June 2018

Virtual Private Networks (VPN)

Mary MacKillop Catholic College accesses the internet through a layer of protection provided by Toowoomba Catholic School Office that filters out known unsafe and inappropriate sites and identifies potentially unsafe sites in order to keep users safe and protect devices from software attacks.

The purpose of a VPN is to legitimately provide secure communication and they may be included as part of commercial Virus and Network protection software packages.

However, a VPN can allow access to the internet that is unfiltered, unregulated and unmonitored and the VPN owner can monitor and use collected data as they wish.

Recently our teachers and IT techs have come across some student iPads that have had VPN apps installed on them. It has been for this reason that we have had to update our student AUP and the school’s Digital Technologies procedures as we forbid the use of VPNs as they place students and the school’s network at considerable risk.

We are updating our ICT procedures and Acceptable Use Agreements with the following statements:

Student Acceptable Use Agreement

Obligations and Responsibilities: 

Ethical, Legal and Responsible Use of ICT Resources - I am aware that:  

I will not use an external service or device to hide user identity over the network. (E.g. VPN)

If your child has installed a VPN app, it must be removed in order to maintain the integrity of the College network and the safety of your child’s access to the internet while at Mary MacKillop Catholic College.

Acceptable Use Procedures for Digital Technologies

Appropriate Use of College Technology Facilities by Families

Students are required to only access the internet whilst at College via our provided secure Wi-Fi network. (Connecting via external services or apps is prohibited.)



Fortnite is the latest craze game catching the world by storm. It is addictive to users as it is a survival challenge based game with rewards that uses building and destroying opponents as goals until you are the last one standing. This perpetuates the need or desire to be the final victor!

There has been a lot of positive and negative hype surrounding this game at the moment and here is what some newspaper articles have to say about the game:

Manchester Evening News -

Forbes Magazine - Why Fortnite is such a massive hit! -

It is not all doom and gloom, as it can be quite a fun and challenging game, however our warnings are centred around any game or website that your child/ren access. Moderation is the key, ensure the content (of this over 13 years of age game) is appropriate for your child and if your child’s mood changes then something needs to change as it is now not a pleasant experience for child or parent. Please be aware of what your child is accessing on their devices at all times.


Read more

CHESS BOOSTS ACADEMICS - A student's perspective

29 June 2018

Article by Tom Fagan - Year 6 at Mary MacKillop Catholic College

Studies have recently proven that chess can boost academic skills. You meet lots of new people at tournaments (social), get smarter learning the strategies of the game and there are many possibilities in chess for teamwork (cooperation).

Here is Tom Fagan having a quick word with the former chess champion, Mr Lesley Lord.

Tom: So how did you get interested in chess?

Les: Well, I was introduced to chess (at another local school) by the chess champion back then. He taught me all I need to know to become the former chess champion of Toowoomba.

You don't need to be the former chess champion for it to help. Things you will learn here include the pin, openings, castling, double attack, check and checkmate. Every Tuesday in first break, chess club meets in the Isands block. All students are welcome!

You can play friends, challenge others or play chess on your iPad (if you have the right apps). Don’t forget that you will be secretly boosting your academics. If you are talented enough, be invited to a special Wednesday chess club and tournaments against other schools. This is a great environment for demonstrating your skills while building your intellect.

I hope this article has got you interested in chess at Mary MacKillop. Credit to Mr Lord for his awesome interview and also to Mr Hubbard for letting us play chess in his classroom. From my experience in chess, it is a very enjoyable game.

Quick fact: there are more possible games of chess than grains of sand! How cool is that! Back on topic, I would encourage all interested students to give it a go.


  • the pin = a chess trap
  • Castle = a chess move using the rook and king
  • Check = where your king is under attack but can move away
  • Checkmate = where the king is in check and cannot move anywhere
  • Double attack = one chess piece attacking two
Read more

Student Achievers

29 June 2018

Bridie and Eliza auditioned and from a group of 70 children they were selected into the cast of 15.

The production will be on Sunday, 8 July at the USQ Artworx.

Read more

50th Anniversary Sacred Heart Primary School

29 June 2018

Please see the attached flyer for more information.

Read more


Winter Wonderland Holiday Activities

29 June 2018

Please see the attached PDF for more information.

Read more

Learning Support Success

28 June 2018

Year Three recently took a break from their guided reading sessions where they have been working hard on decoding and comprehending. They took a chance to become authors and work with some interesting words and were very proud of the sentences they created.

I can write a sentence that makes sense!

A young boy was swinging on a knotted rope that was attached to a tree on a National Park. (Tom)

The scared little boy screamed “It is extremely scary up here swinging on this rope.”(Lincoln)

The brave boy was thinking, I am so scared but, it is scary! (Kate)

The boy was watching how fast he was swinging. (Charlie)

The boy swung over the water and let go of the rope. (Gabby)

The boy came up from under the water and screamed, “That was epic!”(Austin)

“Can I do it again? It was fun but it hurt!” (Ella)

The boy got out of the water and climbed up the tree and went for another turn. (Ayla)

He scrambled up the tree and did it again and again and again until it was time to go home. (Molly)

He has experienced something new, swinging into a river. (Layli)

Read more

From the Principal - Mr Peter Murphy

15 June 2018

I am a subscriber to Parenting Ideas an online resource created by Michael Grose, one of Australia’s leading Parenting Educators. This week I received this blog and thought it worthwhile to share with the MMCC community.



When I called my mum in tears the other day about an overwhelming disappointment she said exactly what I needed to hear; “that really stinks.”

With those three words, I felt her empathy.

When our own kids cry and share their upsets and disappointments, it can tear at our heartstrings. Sometimes we just want to cry with them.

There are also those times when our kids get upset and it wears on our patience. It’s easy to react with, “well, I’ve told you before…’ or “how many times …?” or “if only…”

Don’t let frustration get the better of you

It’s completely normal for us as parents to feel frustrated, even if our kids are upset, and wonder when the lessons will be learned. And it’s completely fair to have those conversations….again. But before we do that, there’s a handful of words that we need to share. A handful of words that, when shared with sincerity, can have the most powerful impact on the emotional health and happiness of our kids over their lifetime.

The words? They’re the ones that deliver a message of warmth and empathy. Empathy can change the nature of our family relationships, boost our kids’ mental health, develop their emotional intelligence and promote warmer healthier, and even less violent, relationships for our kids as young adults. Kids with more empathetic parents are less aggressive, experience less depression, develop greater emotional intelligence (a predictor of success) and grow up to be more empathetic themselves.

Empathy is defined as experiencing emotions of concern at the suffering of others and adopting the perspective of another. It’s different to sympathy which is feeling sorry for someone. It’s about demonstrating our concern and letting our kids know we get it. That we feel it too.

We can show empathy by saying things like:

“I get it.”

“I hear you.”

“Ahh, I can see that you’re feeling…..”

“That stinks.”

“I understand.”

For great impact use the right emotional response

Pairing your words with a matched emotional response, love, comfort, warmth and a willingness to sit with them as they express their emotions shows our kids we get it and validates for them that they have every right to feel the way they do. After all, there’s no such thing as wrong feelings. We can’t help how we feel about the things that happen to us, neither can our kids. We don’t need to agree with how they feel, nor do we have to view their reaction as a reasonable response to what’s happened. It’s all about showing our kids that their message has been received, and that they have a soft place to land. The conversations can come later.

Validation is an important step in our response to our kids when they’re upset, distressed or anxious.

Year 5 SVDP SleepOut

Thanks to our Year 5 team for preparing the students for an experience of outreach and solidarity. The students are very excited about their night at school and will hopefully learn a positive lesson about serving others.

Reading Improvement Strategy – Secondary

In the past week, five of the senior school teachers participated in training for the Diocesan Reading Improvement Strategy for the secondary. They will now be in a position to lead the secondary teaching staff in introducing specific reading improvement strategies in the senior school.


Many of the College vocalists had the opportunity to experience performance and large choir work through their involvement in SingOut this week. The students I have spoken with were very enthusiastic about their experience. Thanks to Jen Langerak, Susie Fredline and Nick Joy for affording the students this experience.

Immersion Experience

Eleven students from Years 9 and 10 experienced a brief immersion into some significant sites and events over the last weekend and through to Monday. The experience has touched their hearts. Thanks to Steve Moyle and Kim McKosker for leading the College efforts in creating this initial immersion experience for our young people. The College was significantly supported in this endeavour by Mark Copeland and personnel from the Toowoomba Catholic Schools Office.

Year 11 Information Night

The first ever Information Night for Year 11 students was held at the College last Monday. Parents received a highly informative session outlining the planning already in place for our foundation Year 11 class. They departed the evening with confidence that the College was in a strong position to deliver a good curriculum package to our small Year 11 2019. Thanks to our senior school curriculum leaders, Brett Rangiira, Dean Logan and Chris Bracken for their preparation towards this evening and the commencement of Year 11 at the College.

Student Departure

I would like our school community to know that my daughter, Monica Murphy, commenced at St Joseph’s College, Toowoomba on Monday this week. This decision in no way reflects on the quality of this school or its teachers. This is an excellent school with excellent teachers. This decision is made by a father, sensitive to his daughter’s needs to be her own person in a school where her dad is not the principal


God bless


Read more

From the Head of Junior School - Mr Timothy Franzmann

15 June 2018

Prep Transition

Our Mary MacKillop prep transition program will start on Tuesday, 31 July. This program was first introduced in 2017 and was hugely successful. It is highly recommended that all children enrolling for prep in 2019 participate in the program. Further information about the program, was sent to all families who have enrolled or who have enquired about prep enrolment in 2019. If you haven’t received this information please contact our enrolments officer Nadine Sheldrick.


I have recently noticed that many students are wearing the incorrect footwear in the junior school.

Our code of presentation, which can be found on the college website, clearly states that students are to wear black leather sports joggers or leather shoes. This also means that the shoe is completely black and does not contain other colours. Many students are wearing shoes that are in breach of the code of presentation. This code applies to all students in the junior school. If your child is not wearing the correct shoes, please rectify this before the end of the term. This is not a new rule or a change to the code of presentation, this has been the rule for many years. I will be making contact with families who are having difficulties with this requirement at the end of term. Please refer to the uniform code of presentation on our college website.


Fidget spinners, football cards, all other collectables, toys and sporting equipment are not be brought to school unless the classroom teacher allows a student to do so for classroom activities. With regards to sporting equipment students can bring equipment to school if it being used for training purposes and is request by a staff member. These items will be confiscated if found at school.


Junior School lost property can be found in the two blue containers on the stage under Uluru. Both bins are cleaned out on a Friday morning and items of clothing with names are given to the correct children. Any items of clothing not named are sent to the uniform shop. Roughly half of the lost items are unnamed, so please make sure that all items are clearly named.  


It is the responsibility of students who bring mobile phones and other electronic devices onto College premises to adhere to the guidelines outlined in this document. The decision to provide a mobile phone to their children should be made by parents or guardians and as such parents should be aware if their child takes a mobile phone onto College premises.

Where is Tim?

During the next two weeks I will continue to conduct prep interviews for 2019. On Friday night, I will be in Brisbane attending a book launch for my brother-in-law’s first book, I will be an apology for the disco. I hope everyone has a fantastic time at the disco. During the final week of term I will be attending the year two excursion in Brisbane. This is the same day as the year one Dr Seuss day. Good luck to the year ones, I hope you have plenty of green eggs and ham. Thank you for a fantastic second term. It is been very long and I look forward to seeing everyone in term three.

Read more

Parish News

15 June 2018

Fr. Richard Leonard is coming to our Parish:

We are very excited to announce that Fr. Richard Leonard, will be coming to our Parish on 4th August.    He will be participating in our Spiritual Forum after Mass. Mass for that week, (which Fr. Richard will be celebrating) will be on Saturday Night at 5.30pm and not the usual 8am Sunday Mass.   We do hope you can all come.


First Eucharist Preparation:

Sunday 17th June:-

8am Mass followed by First Eucharist       Reflection 3.

Sunday 24th June:-

8am Mass followed by First Eucharist Reflection 4


 Huge thank you to all:-

Thanks to everyone who contributed to an extremely

successful Trivia Night with $3427 being made from the

function. A great night of fun was had by all.

Read more


15 June 2018


Our teachers enjoyed a beautiful mass with Mary of the Southern Cross parishioners and Father Brian Noonan on Monday morning 11 June in the Junior library. The mass was celebrated on the feast day of St.Barnabas, a  Jew, born in Cyprus and originally named Joseph, he sold his property, gave the proceeds to the Apostles, who gave him the name Barnabas, and lived in common with the earliest converts to Christianity in Jerusalem.


As a College we are committed to supporting the Catholic Social Teachings of Human Dignity and Preferential Option for the Poor. This term we have some exciting St.Vincent de Paul Society (SVdP) outreach opportunities coming up including:

  • Year 5 Mini-Vinnies Sleepout – Friday 15 June
  • Secondary students are invited to donate non-perishable food items, warm clothing, blankets etc.. to the SVdP Winter Appeal by Thursday 28 June via their Pastoral Care class baskets.
  • Year 8 Youth Vinnies Sleepout- Thursday 28 June
  • Primary Out of Uniform Day- Friday 29 June. Students are requested to wear State of Origin colours (Maroon or Blue) and donate $2 to SVdP


After Lent, the Easter season, and three Sundays of feast days—Pentecost, Most Holy Trinity, and Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ—the Church returns to Ordinary Time. This Sunday’s Gospel from Mark carries a significant message regarding faith and the Kingdom of God. This coming Sunday 17 June we celebrate the 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year B).


​​Prayer: Let us pray. 
Loving God, You give strength to those who hope in you and without you we can do nothing. Hear our prayers and help us to do your will.  
We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. 



On 13 June the Catholic Church celebrated the first day of St.Anthony of Padua

Born in Lisbon, Portugal in 1195. 
Died in Padua, Italy, on 13 June 1231.   
He was a  Catholic priest and friar of the Franciscan Order. He was born and raised by a wealthy family and was well educated. He was known for his engaging preaching, expert knowledge of scripture, and his love and devotion to the poor and the sick.  He was very much loved by the people of Padua and was canonised a saint very quickly after his death.  He is known as the patron saint of lost things. 

Let us pray 
St Anthony, you showed many people the path to God's love. When we are feeling lost or lonely, we ask you to guide us on that same path to God's love. Amen.  



#WithRefugees is the theme for Refugee Week 2018 in Australia.
More than ever, we need a global movement to demand the safety and rights of refugees are protected. In Australia, it is the responsibility of our Government, and each one of us to ensure people forced to flee from their homes can live with dignity and with hope.


Friday 22 July: 8.40am- Whole College Naidoc Liturgy

Friday 29 July: 11.30am- Inaugural Secondary Grandparents Mass

Sunday 31 July: 9.00am- Launch of Catholic Education Week at First Eucharist Mass


Thank you to those candidates and parents who have attended our first two reflection sessions.  We look forward to seeing you this Sunday.




Sunday 17June- 8 am mass followed by First Eucharist Reflection 3 (Review pp. 26-33)

Sunday 24 June- 8 am mass followed by mass First Eucharist Reflection 4 (Review pp. 34-45)

Sunday 22 July – 8am mass involvement during Penitential Rite and Lord’s Prayer for Eucharist Candidates

Monday 23 July- 3.15am First Eucharist Practice in MacKillop Centre

Sunday 29 July- 9am Mackillop Centre




A reminder that all are welcome to join our weekly 5km Run/Jog/Walk every Tuesday at 5pm starting outside the MacKillop Centre. The course is 3 X 1.67km laps. On Tuesday 1 May Josh smashed his old time with a new personal best and new course record of 18:59.

GOLD COAST MARATHON (GCM)- Saturday 30 June, Sunday 1 July

If you would like to be part of the Mary Mac Movers team you will need to register asap.

So far with have 51 entrants registered- a wonderful effort.

Last year we came 2nd for the most entries from a school team, and naturally we want to take out first prize in 2018. Final numbers were calculated as at 31 May.

 For more information visit:

Our password is Celebrate

or contact Charmaine via email:  Brad&Charmaine Schmaling <>


We are planning to have a 5km run and get together on Sunday 24 June at 3pm outside the Mackillop Centre. All those in our Mary Mac Movers team are invited to come along for some fun and team building.

Read more

Nobody is Born comes through hard work!

15 June 2018

Over the last couple of newsletter articles I have been focussing on encouraging the level of effort and application of the students to assist in achieving their goals. The following speech by Michelle Obama sums up what I have been talking about. Please watch this video and share this with your son or daughter. We live in a blessed position but this is no excuse for complacency. We all still need to push ourselves to achieve the best that we are capable of.

Below is a quote from Michelle Obama that sums up her speech succinctly!

"You see, no one -- or maybe very few people are born smart. You become smart through hard work. No one is born a student or a doctor or a teacher or an astronaut. You become those things by studying and practicing and putting in those long hours in the classroom and the lab, wherever it is." Michelle Obama

Click this link to watch the video:

As co-educators of your children. Get them to watch this video and be always ever inspiring of your children to challenge, to questions and to to the best they can possibly do…even when no one is watching!

Read more

Technology Use

15 June 2018

Technology Use

iPads and laptops are to be used for educational purposes only. They should be used in class as instructed by the teacher, or outside of class while completing schoolwork. The students must switch off iMessaging whilst at school. Receiving messages from family or friends in school time is very disruptive to the students’ learning. Parents can ring the College if they have a message that they need to pass on.


Tips for technology use at home include:

  1. Healthy boundaries create healthy relationships: Boundaries help and guide your child; it is therefore essential you can own your parental authority, set clear boundaries and formulate a family home use plan. Be clear regarding expectations and consequences. Be consistent as this helps your child feel safe and secure and in turn builds inner security. Set boundaries from a loving place based on values, meaning and purpose.
  2. Moderate screen time: iPads do not provide the full range of healthy and sensory experiences a child needs to thrive – so first and foremost – encourage lots of physical, creative and sensory play.
  3. Bedrooms are screen-free zones: Keep children safe and healthy by having a screen-free bedroom policy. Cyber bullying, inappropriate content and inappropriate sharing are easier to manage if iPad use takes place in shared family spaces. Turn off screens 1-2 hours before bed, as light and stimulation disrupt circadian rhythms and inhibit good sleep hygiene.
  4. Model healthy iPad use: How you use your iPad or other device will provide a model for how your child uses it. Put your phone down – wherever you are – and direct your attention to your child. There is nothing more deflating and damaging to a child’s sense of self than a disconnected, absent parent (the result can be narcissistic wounding, which is common in adults with addiction!) Drive mindfully and value lives by keeping your car device free.

Australia’s National Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines

 Your child’s age 

 Recommended screen time 

 Under 2 years

 Babies and toddlers should not watch any television or other electronic media (DVDs, computers and electronic games).

 2 to 5 years

 Less than one hour per day.
 Limit their time sitting and watching TV or using other electronic media to less than one hour per day.

 5 to 17 years

 Less than two hours per day.
 Limit their use of electronic media for entertainment (i.e. TV, computers and seated electronic games) to no more than two hours per day.


The Office of the eSafety Commissioner website has some great information that aims to empower everyone to have safer, more positive experiences online.


Read more

Immersion Trip to Myall Creek

15 June 2018

Last weekend, senior students had the opportunity to take part in the College’s first Immersion Trip to Myall Creek.

Students were accompanied by Mrs Kim McCosker and Mr Steve Moyle.  Here’s a recount of what they experienced.

During the trip we visited Boobera Lagoon, a sacred Aboriginal site just outside Goondiwindi.  Buddy Hippi came with us and welcomed us to his country.  He told us some stories through dance.  He showed us some special plants and had many conversations with us regarding the importance of the area.  On Sunday we went to the 180th anniversary of the Myall Creek massacre.  We attended the commemoration ceremony and participated in telling the story on the way to the memorial.  On the way back to Goodiwindi we had a swim at the Artesian pools in Moree.  They are naturally heated artesian bore water.  Yesterday we walked along the McIntrye river and listened to some more stories of the area (and the Toowoomba area) from Dr Mark Copeland.  We stopped in Goombungee and had some conversations with Josh Waters and Jenny Wills (from TCSO) about local Aboriginal culture and food sources.  We began, and finished, our immersion experience at the school story poles in our indigenous garden. 

The following Year 9/10 students aka the first XI; Holly Hutchison, Lawson Smith, Jaymee Suliman, Ebissa Nuccio, Gabby Nielsen , Anabel Austin, Isaac Williams, Connor McKerrow, Mikayla Rieck , Tom Oldham and Josh Roach enjoyed a wonderful cultural immersion experience on 9-11 June.

The trip included travelling to and staying 2 nights at St.Mary’s Catholic School in Goondiwindi, exploring Boobera Lagoon and the MacIntyre River, attending the Myall Creek Massacre 180th Memorial event, swimming at the Moree Artesian Aquatic Centre and visiting Goombungee, as well as participating in prayerful reflections adjacent to our own Indigenous Story  Poles near the Year 1/2 classrooms.

Thank you to all 11 students who brought great credit to themselves and our college as well as Mrs Kim McCosker who attended the 3 day experience. We hope to expand this experience in 2019 so more Year 9/10 students can gain greater knowledge and understanding of the past so we can move towards authentic reconciliation as a nation.

Others that deserve recognition and appreciation include: Dr Mark Copeland, Mrs Jennifer Wills, Mr Josh Waters, Mr Buddy Hippi, Father Hermi, Youth Community Learning Centre and St. Mary’s Catholic School.

The immersion students will be giving a presentation at our whole College Naidoc liturgy on the first Friday of next term. We have also been invited to share our learnings at the Toowoomba Schools Office Effective Practices in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education In-service at Picnic Point, Toowoomba on 7 August, 2018.

Read more

Six tips to searching safely online (cont.)

15 June 2018

Searching Safely Online

Six tips to searching safely

The previous newsletter highlighted Protecting Devices and Bookmarking preferred websites to search safely online. Please see below the final tips.

5. Check the website’s safety

Check a website’s safety rating before visiting it by using online search tools that help identify malicious websites. If you are worried about a game or social networking site used by your child then check its safety rating. It’s simple to do this: just type in the phrase “is this website safe” into your browser, choose from one of the search results and then enter the website’s URL address into the search field.

6. Talk about safe searching

Talk to your child about safe searching, as well as the kind of websites they can view. Realistically, you can’t supervise their internet use all the time so build trust by explaining any rules and be open to their suggestions about usage. If your child has been exposed to undesirable content, whether accidentally or on purpose, talk them through what they have seen. Encourage them to speak to you about anything they find upsetting while playing games, visiting websites or social networking.

Reading at Home

In the previous newsletter we highlighted the importance of establishing reading routines, by setting aside time to read with your children and making books easily accessible.

The third fundamental of family reading success is talking with your child before, during, and after you read together. This is important because reading isn’t just sounding out words—it’s understanding written language. To encourage your child to think about and understand the meaning of words, it’s important to engage your child in conversation about stories. Look at the cover and title of a book and talk about what you think the story is about.

If there are things your child doesn’t understand, stop and explain as you read. Ask your child questions about what you’re reading, especially questions that can’t be answered with a simple yes or no. What part of the story did you like best? Why? Did the story end the way you wanted it to? Why or why not? What character did you like best? Stop in the middle of a story and ask, “What do you think will happen next?”

As children figure out the meaning of stories with adults, they learn to participate, reflect, and recall—all of which will contribute to their reading comprehension skill and long-term school success.

To read the previous articles on this topic, click here.

Read more

Polair Naming Ceremony

15 June 2018

On Friday, 8 June the College participated in a very special event in conjunction with the Queensland Police Service.

As many of us are aware, Senior Constable Brett A Forte, a parent of the College community, was tragically killed in the line of duty, a little over a year ago. 

The Queensland Police service hosted an official naming ceremony of the POLAIR 2 Helicopter Brett A Forte at the College, along with the Forte family, and the whole College community.

Joined by the Police Commissioner, Minister for Police and approximately 70 Police Officials, the helicopter was officially named, followed by a blessing from Bishop Robert McGuckin.

Students and staff of the College would like to thank the Queensland Police Service for the privilege of participating in this special event.

Read more

Sports Report

15 June 2018

All results from the Athletics Carnival are published in the attached PDF document.


Thank you to those students who entered this competition. We had 4 teams who played 5 rounds before the finals. The finals game was held on Thursday 14 June in the Ignatius Centre between the Unknowns and Carriers. The 2018 Secondary Futsal Champions are The Carriers who won the final 6-4 in a hard fought game. Thank you to Mr Sean Albion and Miss Tamara Niemeyer for supporting this initiative. In term 3, Year 3/4 students will be invited to play in a 5 week Wednesday futsal competition designed to develop skills, fun, fitness, friendships and fair play.

Secondary Futsal Table after round games




































Total Points


















A reminder that training is offered by Darling Downs Cross Country coach Mr Steve Moyle on Tuesday and Thursday mornings 7.30-8.10am at Kratzke AFL oval as well as Tuesday 5km starting At MacKillop Centre at 5pm.

LONG JUMP TRAINING: Thursdays 10.50-11.30am

HIGH JUMP TRAINING: Thursdays 3.00-4.00pm

SHOT PUT/DISCUS TRAINING: Fridays 10.50-11.30am




As at 13 June 2018

Given Name








Mary MacKillop Catholic College

10-12 Yrs Touch Football Girls




Mary MacKillop Catholic College

10-12 Yrs Hockey Boys




Mary MacKillop Catholic College

10-12 Yrs Aquathlon




Mary MacKillop Catholic College

12 Yrs Rugby League




Mary MacKillop Catholic College

10-12 Yrs Basketball Girls




Mary MacKillop Catholic College

13-19 Yrs Cross Country Boys




Mary MacKillop Catholic College

10-12 Yrs Football Boys




Mary MacKillop Catholic College

11-12 Yrs Rugby Union




Mary MacKillop Catholic College

13-19 Yrs Cross Country Girls




Mary MacKillop Catholic College

10-19 Yrs Orienteering




Mary MacKillop Catholic College

11 Yrs Rugby League

Read more


Code of Conduct Review

15 June 2018

We’d love your feedback!

Toowoomba Catholic Schools (TCS) is currently reviewing the Code of Conduct, a document that sets out the values and behaviours expected of all TCS employees.

Your feedback on this important document is very welcome. You can access the Code of Conduct review information and feedback form through the TCS website homepage at:

Feedback closes on Monday, 16 July 2018.

Read more

IGNITE Youth Group Movie Night

15 June 2018

IGNITE Youth Group Movie Night 
with Popcorn ~ Hot Chocolate ~ Marshmallows

This Friday evening we will screen "I Can Only Imagine"
The story behind the song that inspired millions

Bring your dooner, beanbags, pillow and get ready for a great evening out.

Friday 15 June 
6.15-8.30pm (please note change of time)
At The Highfields Hub, 55 Highfields Rd
High school age students
$5 per family

You can preview the film at

Read more

P&F News

15 June 2018

The Athletics Sausage Sizzle

The P&F are pleased to announce that the recent Athletics Sausage Sizzle raised over $1,000. It’s a fantastic amount for the Sports Department to use on resources to benefit the students.

A huge thanks to those who helped make this possible and of course those who consumed refreshments!

Junior Disco – Friday 22 June 2018

We are looking for volunteers to help out at the disco on Friday 22 June. Please see attached flyer for further details.

Since the disco is split into year groups, we’ve done the same with the volunteer roster, which should mean that there’s no need to stay from start to finish (unless you would like to).

Volunteers can register to help via this form -

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Pie Drive – There’s still time to place orders

The deadline for Pie orders has been extended to Monday 18 June. This is a great opportunity for a delicious treat and by doing so you will be supporting the College.

Orders can be submitted to the Junior Reception and Pies will be ready for collection on Thursday 28 June not Thursday 28 July (as noted on the original order slip).

If anyone has missed out on the order form, they can be collected from the Junior Office or printed off from

Healing Hands
If you would like to support Healing Hands, you can simply list Healing Hands as the customer and indicate which items you would like to donate. These items will be automatically passed to Healing Hands. With stocks currently running low this would be a great way to help fill the freezers for those in need.

Important dates
- Forms & monies to be back to the Junior Reception: Monday 18 June.
- Collection of orders: Thursday 28 June, Junior Tuckshop

Thanks for your support!

Healing Hands – Stocks are running low

Hand Hands is a great initiative to help those in times of need with good home cooked meals and pantry goods. Currently, demand for help is high and stocks are running low so they need some assistance to make sure they can continue to cater for all.

Cooked Meals and Home Baking

For those who would like to donate cooked meals or baked goods, containers are available from the Junior Reception. Meals need to be suitable for freezing and noted with a list of ingredients. Cooked meals and baked goods can be returned to the Junior Admin office.

Dry Goods

Healing Hands are also running very low on dry goods so any donations would be gratefully received. If you can kindly spare any of the following goods then they can be left at the Junior Admin office.

  • Pasta
  • Rice
  • Pre-cooked rice (to make it super easy)
  • Lunch box goodies

Any and all contributions are gratefully received.

Date reminders

Wednesday 1 August – P&F Meeting, Junior Staff Room, 7pm

Sunday 26 August -  Kidshotz Photography – More details to follow.


Read more

Making Jesus Known at Mary MacKillop

15 June 2018

Each term the Year 9 Youth Ministry Religion class brings the Spirit of Jesus to families in our school community who may be experiencing a period of difficulty.

They do this by giving 3-4 hours of their time after school to cook meals and lunchbox goodies with Mrs Holman and Mrs Worner, for the Healing Hands group. It’s fabulous, frantic and lots of fun. A huge thank you to all the parents, teachers and parishioners in our school community who make Jesus real by donating the ingredients for us to cook with.

If you would like to join the Healing Hands Group, join them on Facebook at

Read more

Student Achievers

15 June 2018

Congratulations to Lachlan Spies who made the Darling Downs Rugby Union boys u/12 team for 2018. (Photo supplied)

Congratulations to Lucy Anlezark who made the South West QLD team for touch .
She’s having such a successful year with making Twisters , Darling Downs & now “Swans”! (Photo supplied)


Read more

From the Principal - Mr Peter Murphy

1 June 2018

An error doesn’t make a mistake until you refuse to correct it. O.A. Battista

For as long as there are kids in schools, some of them will occasionally do the wrong thing.  This is natural and to be expected, but it cannot go unattended.  In all such cases the ultimate role and responsibility of the school is to do its best to ensure that the boy or girl learns something positive from the experience.

I regularly find myself working with parents, pastoral leaders, teachers and the young person at the centre of the situation.  The focus primarily one of, “What can be done to make things right?”  We come together with this as our common aim and approach the whole situation as partners working in the best interests of the young person.  Most often the answer is as simple as the young person standing tall, admitting error, and working to repair the damage done.  Forgiveness and repair of relationships are fundamental to the Catholic school’s approach to helping avoid turning error into mistake.



We like to think of Highfields as a safe family friendly environment – and it is. At the same time, it is important to remember that our place is not immune to the evils of the world. Unfortunately, there can be predators. These people may or may not live in our community, but can enter an area at will. Police conduct regular patrols of primary schools to ensure the safety of children at school and to and from school. In the first few weeks of this term, police have noticed a number of children under the age of 12 walking or riding to school without supervision.

By law, children under 12 cannot travel to or from school alone. There must be some level of supervision. This law is in place to ensure child safety.

Apart from pick up and drop off, adults not employed at the school are not permitted to enter the main body of the school. Again, this is a precaution to ensure the safety of children. If you are coming to the College outside of these times, please report directly to the office. It is a requirement through the school day that any visitors to the school be accompanied by an adult employed at the College.



As we grow towards a P-12 College we want to ensure we are providing students with the resources they need to get the best out of their education.  With this in mind and in conjunction with feedback from the School Review and Improvement Process, Year 7 2019 will move to a BYOD laptop program. The minimum specifications for the laptop will be sent to parents in the coming weeks.

Families of students entering Years 8 and 9 will only be entering the third year with the current iPad device. These families will be surveyed in the coming weeks to determine their preference between BYOD iPad or BYOD laptop for 2019.

Read more