New faces and new beginnings

We are well into the term now and both students and staff have settled well into the routine of school and activities. You cannot imagine the busyness and rich life of the College until you spend a day at the school. It is at times frenetic and at times calm and peaceful, there are periods of silence and other times energy and noise. I am just astonished at the transition of the Year 7 and 8s to secondary school – they have just flourished. Their routines, engagement with learning, interactions with staff and students are just terrific. They completed their Mathematics and English Progressive Achievement Test very well and the results indicate that students are well prepared to tackle the rigours of secondary school.

The Year 12 students have equally begun their year very well – focussed on their study program and knowing that time will escape very quickly with momentum building when the first summative assessments become due in the next two weeks. At Marcellin, we are delighted that our new programs have begun. The first class in Early Childhood Education and Care commenced this week and the new space is beautifully set out with early learning equipment and resources. Our hairdressing salon is now complete and classes will begin this week with Clip Joint Education, our major partner. We are very excited about our new pathways and opportunities for our students at Marcellin and Cardijn.

Despite the restrictions of movement around the school because of building works in the Amphitheatre, our students and staff have adapted well and are clocking up their daily steps with extra exercise. Already one can see the amazing changes that await us as we see the unfolding of a new student Central Plaza and Home Economics facility.

On Friday 8 February we held our Dux Assembly which is a special day to recognise our students who have achieved at the highest level. It was also a wonderful opportunity to welcome back our special guest alumna Emma Genockey, who was the Dux of the school in 2012. Emma shared her story as a student at Cardijn, university and now in the workforce. When she graduated from Cardijn she studied Science at the University of Adelaide majoring in Chemistry and Genetics – her passion and interest. However following a number of years doing exciting work in laboratories discovering new ways of solving medical challenges and health-related illnesses, Emma discovered that teaching was really what she wanted to do. She completed her Masters of Teaching and began teaching in 2017. She was appointed to Caritas College, Pt Augusta in 2018 where she teaches Science and absolutely loves it. We are very proud of Emma and her achievements and even more so knowing she is a teacher in Catholic Education South Australia. Her story is inspirational and a great testimony of the calibre of students who graduate from Cardijn.

Dr Paul Rijken is principal of Cardijn College, an R-12 co-educational Catholic school in the Marist tradition, deeply inspired by the method of College patron Joseph Cardijn with a foundation built on the three pillars of his teachings; to See, Judge and Act. Educating and inspiring students in the beautiful Southern Vales region of Adelaide since 1984, Cardijn has grown to encompass three schools, each with distinct offerings. Cardijn College Galilee at Aldinga offers Reception to Year 7, expanding to include Year 8 in 2022 and Year 9 in 2023. Cardijn College at Noarlunga Downs offers Years 7-12 and is renowned for academic excellence and a vibrant extra-curricular program. Cardijn College Marcellin at Christie Downs provides a wide variety of vocational education and training opportunities for students in Years 10 – 12 and beyond, with relationships that extend well into their careers. With a current enrolment of 1750 students and 240 staff, Cardijn College is an institution which strives to be a beacon of faith in the community, with students who have enormous influence and impact on both a local and global level. Paul has been the principal at Cardijn College since 2005. He has a Ph.D. from Curtin University in Science and Mathematics Education. He is a Fellow of the Australian College of Educational Leaders.

2 comments on “New faces and new beginnings

  1. Amanda Griffiths

    I would like to receive the principal’s blog via email, thank you.

    Amanda Griffiths


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