The Year 8, 2017 academic year commenced with a very positive start.

It was lovely to witness the sea of familiar faces on the first day of School as they greeted each other and settled quickly into loading their lockers and their new surroundings. The girls have returned to School energised and ready to go! With one year of senior schooling completed, they have quickly established their routines, organised their sporting and musical pursuits and immersed themselves fully in activities.

We welcomed two new girls into Year 8, Tiffany Pham into 8HK and Megan Nixon into 8LT. We also welcomed our Year 8 Form teachers, new to St Catherine’s and Year 8 this year, Mr Nick Racina 8DS and Ms Julia West 8BB who has returned to St Catherine’s. We are fortunate in having the experience of Mrs Katrina Davey 8HK and Mr Tim Collins 8 LT who have remained at the Year 8 level.

It is pleasing to note that we have a large number of girls participating in one or more GSV sports during Term 1, not to mention the large turnout for early morning sports training, including Running Club and additional Tennis training. We have many musicians and a strong collection of singers. We look forward to their musical/choral performances during the Term.

As part of the Year 8 Wellbeing program, we will be focusing on the development of Emotional Intelligence through our collaboration with Swinburne University. The Form teachers will deliver this program during Level/Form time and will focus on identifying emotions, expressing emotions and dealing with emotions. A range of activities will be undertaken and at times, we will supplement our program with external providers.

We have in our Year level some girls who, outside of School, undertake Sport and Music at an elite level. We congratulate Mayuri Muralidharan on her Fencing achievements, Lillian Lu on her recent Chess competitions, both nationally and internationally, Sophia Livanidis on her acro gymnastic elite training and Anita Yang (cello) for the summer camp she participated in with the Melbourne Youth Symphony Orchestra and Amelia Jones who will spend some time in Term 1 in Canada training with an elite international skiing group.

One of the responsibilities undertaken by the Year 8 girls is the raising of the School flags each morning. The girls have established a good understanding of the importance of each of the three flags flying at St Catherine’s and the protocols associated with flag raising and lowering. In Term 1, 8HK have the responsibility of raising and lowering the flags each day.

We wish all of the girls a very successful start to Year 8.

Miss Jenny Molloy, Dean of Year 8