When words such as inspiration, motivation and empowerment are put into action, a school can do significant things.
Northern Beaches Secondary College Mackellar Girls Campus Principal, Christine Del Gallo, has revealed the qualities and programs that she believes makes her school a high-achieving and empowering learning environment.
“Our main strengths are centred on the support we give our students and our staff,” Ms Del Gallo told The Educator.
“Having high expectations of the girls - as well as the teachers who support them – has helped build a culture of commitment towards learning.”
Northern Beaches Secondary College (NBSC) is a collaboration of five individual school campuses. Mackellar is a Year 7-12 girls’ comprehensive campus which offers girls the opportunity to learn in a motivational, empowering, all-girls environment.
Ms Del Gallo said that the school’s teachers focus on the “whole student” to foster a range of opportunities and provide an all-rounded education.
“Our belief is that our girls can do anything. We consistently focus on the personal best of our students, and that shows in their academic achievement, generosity of spirit and contributions to the broader community,” Ms Del Gallo said.
Such qualities, Ms Del Gallo explains, are enhanced by initiatives such as the Lighthouse Gifted and Talented program, which challenge the school’s students to develop their talents, character and interpersonal skills.
“The Gifted and Talented program helps harness the best in our students. For example, we have enrichment days, which give our girls challenging, deeper, broader experiences way beyond the normal classroom,” Ms Del Gallo said.
“As a result students develop an ability to advance and go on to excellent HSC results. The Gifted and Talented program fits seamlessly into the whole school and is embraced by all.”
In addition to encouraging academic excellence and extracurricular activities Mackellar Girls Campus holds student voice and personal best in high regard.
“Deputy Principal Adrienne Scalese, leads a range of character-building student programs that are designed to empower our students,” Ms Del Gallo said.
“We have programs such as a lunchtime Tutorial Centre run by Year 12 students, the Zonta Group, which has a strong focus on social justice and empowering women, and Pastoral Care, which gives the Prefects and SRC leadership opportunities.”
This year Mackellar Girls Campus will be undertaking a number of major projects, including students raising funds which will go directly towards purchasing, assembling and sending 1 000 birthing kits to a developing country to reduce mother and infant mortality rates.