School Opening Stage 7 St Columba’s School, Bayswater

 

The building program at St Columba’s School in Bayswater is complete. Stage 7 of the journey was opened on 31 October this year by CEWA Deputy Director Mr Peter Yensch. Senator Slade Brockman was in attendance as the Federal Government representative, along with Ms Lisa Baker, our local MLA. Architects Parry and Rosenthal, builders Rivett Construction and former principal Greg Martin were part of the official party. Mrs Dorothy Marsh, who the new administration block was named after, was officially welcomed back to St Columba’s School and recognised for her contribution over 26 years to the school community.

 

A new administration building, undercover area and the refurbishment of the original church made up the Stage 7 project. The works were completed over a twelve-month period. Greg Martin was the principal over the past ten years and was the inspiration behind the vision that is now St Columba’s School. Greg is to be commended for his persistence and tenacity in achieving an outstanding result that has created a wonderful learning environment for our students, but also a place that has central to its culture, a place for gathering. The design allows for the community to come together.

 

The location of the original church, now our Performing Arts studio, makes it our centrepiece. In the early morning and late evenings, when the light fades and the security lighting begins to take effect, there is something very special created. It brings a sense of tranquillity and peace. Something very special has been created.

 

The Dorothy Marsh Administration Building contains office spaces for administration, teacher work spaces and a staffroom that is modern and open, a beautiful space for staff to spend time together. The principal office is located with an outlook across the undercover area and allows for a flowing space between the work of a principal and as an administrator and an educational leader. There is flow to the design.

 

The undercover area. This has become our main space for celebrations and events, as well as for play. It is an area that is utilised throughout the school day by our students, staff and our families. Just a magnificent space that has impacted positively in creating a sense of coming together.

 

The Mercy value for the year here at St Columba’s has been SERVICE. The work in completing Stage 7 involved many people who have come to SERVE.

 

To the Federal Government, represented by Senator Brockman. We are grateful for their continued support throughout this Stage, as without their generosity we would not have achieved the learning environment we see today. To the State Government for their support through the Low Interest Loan Scheme. This has enabled our school to have the capacity to complete the transition from a single stream school to a double. Without the support of both federal and state governments, new buildings would not be possible.

 

To Catholic Education WA, represented by our Deputy Director Peter Yensch, we thank them for your constant support of St Columba’s School. To Shaun Mayne who has been the consultant on the Stage 7 Project. Shaun has always made himself available for meetings, phone calls, emails, whenever needed.

 

To Mar Hube and all School Board members. We know the support you offered Greg throughout the building program was outstanding. Your trust and confidence in us as your principals is sincerely appreciated. This is the same for all our parents and students who have believed in the vision. Getting through the challenges of little space during construction was what this community thrives upon. This takes character and persistence and for this we say thank you.

 

An extra special thank you to our Mercy Sisters. The Mercy Spirit is truly alive within our community here at St Columba’s School. The love for the Mercy Sisters continues to grow as we live our values. We sincerely thank the Sisters for their presence in our school.

 

The buildings are a credit to all involved. As the new principal in 2018, I continue to be extremely grateful for the work of Greg and all others in creating the learning environment we have at St Columba’s School, Bayswater. Your commitment to the life of St Columba’s will always be remembered with fondness and appreciation.

 

Art Lombardi