New schools in Wagga Wagga

New schools in Wagga Wagga

Kevin McInerny

The August 2008 edition of AD2000 included on page 14 details of a new school or schools being developed within the Diocese of Wagga Wagga with the aim of establishing a single sex education for boys and girls. The article outlines many other laudable goals.

However, it fails to indicate just who is directing this new venture. We are told that the Dominican Sisters are teaching in the schools but we are also informed that the schools 'have been established independently of any affiliated group within the Church.'

May one ask then, just who is directing this new venture? The impression is created of some form of elitist group. Whilst I can readily applaud some of the announced goals of the venture, I would be alarmed if the schools were not in the last analysis responsible to the Bishop for their licence to operate under the title 'Catholic'.

Many thanks for your great journal.

KEVIN McINERNEY
North Rocks, NSW

A response

The two new colleges referred to in Mr McInerney's letter are known as Blessed Mary MacKillop Colleges and have the individual names Christ the King Boys' College and Our Lady of the Rosary Girls' College. They are being developed in the Wagga Wagga Diocese, having been first established there in 2007. Many years of planning went into the establishment of these colleges.

The Directors of the colleges are Mr and Mrs Bill Andrews who work very closely with a school board. Yes, the school does have the Dominican sisters teaching in it, but it is not affiliated with the Dominican Order as it is not a Dominican school.

As stated in the August AD2000 article the colleges are not affiliated with any group within the Church. However, the Bishop of Wagga Wagga, Bishop Gerard Hanna, has endorsed and approved the religious curriculum and the teaching of the Catholic Faith in the colleges, although the colleges themselves do not promote themselves as 'Catholic colleges', but rather as 'Independent Colleges' which offer Catholic instruction.

The teaching and truths of the Catechism of the Catholic Church are taught with our aim that 100 percent of students when leaving the colleges will still be practising their faith.

Incidentally, it is refreshing to have the 'elitist group' label applied to our colleges, given the modest fees which they charge.

BARBARA CHIGWIDDEN
Principal
Wagga Wagga, NSW

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