Save the Date: Formation for Mission Gathering (Ref: 312/23)

Join other Catholic Educators next year from 13 to 14 August 2024 at Mary MacKillop Place in North Sydney for an opportunity to share practice in a range of areas related to formation for mission.

This opportunity is open to all diocesan directors and leaders of formation, mission, and religious education across Catholic education and is organised by the National Catholic Education Commission.

More information will be released in the coming months.

Register your interest here.

Professional Learning

Tomorrow: Managing Student Anxiety with Dr Justin Coulson (Ref: 301/23)

Schools have seen increased rates of Generalised Anxiety Disorder diagnosis amongst students. This is also true for a range of other mental health conditions. As such, educators and school leaders are looking for other ways to further support the young people in their care.

Following his popular webinar School Sucks!, which was delivered earlier this year on managing school refusal, CSNSW is pleased to welcome back Dr Justin Coulson who is an expert in this field. Justin will share his thoughts on how schools can support young people, but he will also challenge schools to consider their own context and how they are best placed to support students.

WHEN:                Wednesday 22 November

TIME:                    10:00am – 11:00am

WHERE:               online, via Teams (link to be emailed closer to the date).

To register for this popular webinar, simply click on the following link:


New NESA Syllabus Support Materials​​​​​​​ (Ref: 302/23)

New syllabus support materials are now available from the NESA site. These materials include assessment resources, sample scope and sequences, sample units of work and parent guides.

Support materials are now available for the following syllabuses:


Anzac Memorial and NSW Parliament Joint Teacher Preview (Ref: 319/23)

Join the NSW Parliament and Anzac Memorial Education teams at the Joint Teacher Preview evening on Thursday, 7 December!

Visit the NSW Parliament’s historic Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council Chambers, explore excursion options for your students, and discover teaching resources specially developed for teaching the HSIE History K-6 syllabus and the Stage 6 Legal Studies syllabus.

Experience how the Anzac Memorial’s Learning Team uses live theatre and creative expression to bring Anzac stories to life across the History, English and Creative Arts syllabuses.

Discover excursion options for Stages 2-6, exploring Australians at war, community and remembrance. Learn about the history of the building and the meaning behind its art and architecture.

The program ends with an opportunity to connect with your colleagues over drinks.

Thursday, December 7, 4:30 pm to 7:00 pm

Commencing at: NSW Parliament House, 6 Macquarie St, Sydney

Followed by: Anzac Memorial, Hyde Park

Register now:


Save the Date: 2024 CSNSW Curriculum Reform Conference (Ref: 318/23) 

CSNSW will hold its second Curriculum Reform Conference on Monday 30 September & Tuesday 1 October 2024 in the Sydney CBD.

More information will be released early next year.


Catholic Schools New South Wales CSSA Symposium – 'Writing across the curriculum’ (Ref: 316/23)

The Catholic Schools NSW (CSSNW) CSSA Symposium ‘Writing across the curriculum’ will be held on Monday 18 March 2024 in Sydney, CBD. Please note that this is a date change from previous CSNSW communications.

The Teaching Writing: Report of the Thematic Review of Writing (NESA 2018) highlighted the ability to write is critical to educational success. In response, the reformed NSW syllabuses have a strengthened focus on the teaching of writing.

In support of the NESA curriculum reform, this CSSA Symposium will explore the theme ‘Writing across the curriculum’ and reflects our shared commitment to engaging in current and emerging issues in secondary education in Catholic schools. The symposium program will engage participants to reflect upon how they can embrace change and optimize learning and engagement within their school and beyond.

This event will bring together education and industry leaders to explore how evidence-based practices can be implemented in a secondary education context.

CSNSW invites Diocesan Representatives, Principals, School Leadership, Key Learning Area Coordinators, Stage 4–6 Year Coordinators and teachers in Catholic education to join us at the CSNSW CSSA Symposium – ‘Writing across the curriculum’.

 Event Details

Date:                                         Monday 18 March 2024

Time:                                        Registration opens at 8am for commencement at 8.30am-4:00pm

Location:                                  The Amora Hotel, Jamison Street Sydney

The location is close to Wynard Train Station, the Light Rail, Buses or Secure Parking Stations.

Cost:                                          To be advised

NESA Accredited PD:               To be advised


Primary Curriculum Collaborative (Ref: 315/23)

The Curriculum Implementation Collaborative is an initiative developed in partnership between Breakspear Learning and Catholic Schools NSW as a dynamic and practical professional learning response. It will provide content, community and support to ensure all leadership teams are equipped to make meaningful progress every term.

This community program is designed for leaders and their leadership teams who are currently working in NSW Catholic primary schools. To express interest or to find out more information about the Collaborative please click on the link below and complete and submit an expression of interest form.

Further information is available from Joanne Hack


NEW: Introduction to Complaints Handling Module (Ref: 314/23)

Schools are required to have policies and procedures that make provision for the welfare of students. Whether you are an indvidual non-government school or part of a system of non-government schools, you must comply with the requirement to provide a safe and supportive environment (see 5.6..2 of the RANGS Manual) for students by having a documented process for complaints or grievances from students or parents.

The purpose of this course is to describe the essential characteristics of a robust Complaints Handling process.

You can access the course by clicking here. (You will need to log in to the CSNSW learning platform to access the course).


Webinar: Supporting students through the bushfire season (Ref: 311/23)

Large scale distressing events, like bushfires, have a significant impact on school communities. Join staff from Be You, as they discuss the importance of psychological preparedness and how you can support students to manage the impact of natural disasters.

This webinar will explore the relevant Be You resources and tools you as educators can use to support your school community and will discuss how to empower students to participate in bushfire preparedness.

Register now through this link.

For more information, reach out via email here.


An Introduction to RAP and the Standards for Teachers​​​​​ (Ref: 305/23) 

Specifically designed to meet the needs of teachers new to the RAP or those desiring a refresher, NESA staff will provide teachers with an understanding of key features and how to use RAP data sets to create teaching and learning goals.

Completing this course will contribute 1 hour of NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) Accredited PD in the priority area of the delivery and assessment of the NSW curriculum/EYLF addressing standard descriptors 5.1.2 from the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers towards maintaining Proficient Teacher Accreditation in NSW.

This course will be delivered via Teams and is suitable for participating as an individual or as a group.

Date:              15th December 2023

Time:             9:00 – 10:30



Animals in Schools-School Support Dog Podcast (Ref: 301/23)

All schools in NSW must satisfy the requirements of the Animal Research Act 1985 (NSW) and the Australian code for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes. The Animals in Schools website provides advice about specific issues related to the use of animals in schools.

This resource is supported by the Schools Animal Care and Ethics Committee (SACEC) and is an outcome of the collaboration of the three NSW school sectors. A recent addition to the website is a six-part podcast exploring the role and management of school support dogs in schools.

Click the Dogcast to listen and learn. All inquiries regarding the ethical care of animals in schools should be referred to Joanne Hack


Resources for Learning

Sun Safety Resources – Sun and UV at School (Ref: 300/23)

With the warmer months upon us, it’s timely to remind students of the dangers of UV rays and the importance of sun safety.

Australia has one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world, and statistics show that melanoma is the most common cancer affecting young Australians aged 15 – 24 years. The good news is that skin cancer is highly preventable.

The new Sun and UV at School skin cancer resources will assist primary and secondary school students in making healthy, safe, and proactive choices regarding sun protection to reduce their risk of skin cancer.

Click on the following link to access teaching and learning materials, as well as other general resources:


Applications Open: eSafety’s Youth Council (Ref: 299/23)

The eSafety Youth Council is a great opportunity for young people to share their voices with industry leaders and government to help us understand what a safer online world could look like, ensuring it resonates with and protects younger generations.

Young people can apply via the eSafety website.

Applications close on 1 December 2023.


School Updates & Newsletter

Principal Reporting - Antisocial and Extremist Behaviour (Ref: 304/23)

As the conflict between Israel and Palestine escalates, the NSW school sector has seen an increase in violence, antisocial and extremist behaviour. Principals are advised that any antisocial and extremist behaviour must be reported to the NSW School Incident Report and Support Hotline (The Hotline). Ph: 1300 495 051

The Hotline is available for all school staff in NSW to report concerns about antisocial and extremist behaviour. It operates 24/7 and will provide advice, consultation and referral to police where required.

Under Part 5A NSW Education Act, schools have a duty to mitigate any risk posed by violent or threatening behaviour. Currently, the education minister has requested daily briefings from the Director of the Hotline.

2024 Registrations Now Open – Transition to Year 7 Available to CSNSW Schools (Ref: 309/23)

Transition to Year 7 is a free online literacy and numeracy assessment package available to secondary schools on an opt-in basis in Term 1. The assessment is developed by the NSW Department of Education. Assessments are completed online by students in participating schools between 5 February to 8 March 2024. Cohort and student results reports are immediately made available to schools in Scout.

More information about the assessment may be found here.

There is no cost to participate in the Transition to Year 7 assessment.

All schools wishing to participate in 2024 will need to complete the Transition-to-Year-7-2024-Opt-In-nonGov form by Friday 1 December 2023. .

Important dates

Term 4, 2023

  • 1 December Opt-in for 2023 Transition to Year 7 closes
  • 4 December – Next steps emails sent to participating schools

Term 1, 2024

  • 5 February Assessment platform username and password link emailed to nominated assessment coordinator.
  • 5 February Assessment window opens.
  • 8 March Assessment window closes.

Further information contact Karen Ferrante

Interfaith Prayer Service for Peace (Ref: 306/23)

The Abraham Conference Organising Committee invites believers from all faiths and people of goodwill to pray for peace in Israel and Palestine at the Prayer Service for Peace.

Representatives from the three Abrahamic faiths – Jewish, Christian and Muslim – will share in scripture, prayer and silence in a call for peace in Israel and Palestine.

The event will take place on Thursday 30 November from 12:30 – 1:00 pm. It will be held at Ferguson Hall (St Stephen’s Uniting Church), 197 Macquarie Street, Sydney (opposite NSW Parliament).

Places are limited. Free tickets can be obtained here.

Scholarships and Awards

Nominations Now Open For 2024 Prime Minister’s Prizes For Science (Ref: 320/23)

Nominations for Australia’s most prestigious science prizes are now open and the search is on for Australia’s most outstanding scientists, research-based innovators, and science teachers.

The Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science recognise significant advancement of knowledge across a diverse range of science fields, and the critical role teachers play in inspiring the next generation of scientists.
Nominating someone for a Prime Minister’s Prize for Science is the first step – no one can be recognised unless you nominate them. Nominations can be made by peers or colleagues.

Nominations are open until February 8 with $750,000 in prize money to be distributed across seven categories:

  • Prime Minister’s Prize for Science
  • Prime Minister’s Prize for Innovation
  • Frank Fenner Prize for Life Scientist of the Year
  • Malcolm McIntosh Prize for Physical Scientist of the Year
  • Prize for New Innovators
  • Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Primary Schools
  • Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Secondary Schools.

The 2023 Prizes celebrated Australia’s excellence in quantum computing and pharmaceutical innovation and outstanding science teaching, highlighting the important contribution science makes to our nation.

Nominations close at 5pm on February 8.

More information about the Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science and how to nominate can be found at:


30th Australian Training Awards (Ref: 317/23)

The Australian Training Awards are the peak national awards that showcase best practice in vocational education and training (VET). The Awards recognise and celebrate excellence and are an important mechanism for promoting the benefits of VET.

Winners from each state and territory training awards compete for a national award title. Direct entry is also available for some award categories. This has led to Australia-wide awareness and respect for skill-based careers and skills excellence.

Molly Smith, from McCarthy Catholic College, was the Australian School-based Apprentice or Trainee of the Year Award runner-up. She was inspired to undertake her Certificate III in Health Services Assistance following an illness in the family. “My traineeship lets me study something I’m passionate about, but it’s also given me a place where I feel at home. Nursing has had a massive impact on my life. I’ve gained confidence valuable skills, and a sense of belonging – I’m excited about my future.”

CathWest Innovation College has campuses in two Western Sydney locations where they provide young people with a wider range of educational options, to ensure more choices for a bright future. Winning Silver for School Pathways to VET Award, “CathWest puts students in the driver’s seat when it comes to their learning journey. Our students achieve because we teach them to believe in themselves the way we believe in them.”

At John XXIII Catholic College, secondary learning goes way beyond the boundaries of the traditional classroom. They won bronze in the Innovation in VET Award, “We challenge traditional learning spaces and traditional pathways. Education has no physical boundaries. Learning extends way beyond classroom walls and embraces vocational options, accelerated pathways and university subjects in senior years.”


Career Advisers from NSW Catholic Schools among Award Recipients (Ref: 313/23)

Eight Career Advisers from Catholic Schools Across NSW were among the 28 award recipients at the recent Career Advisers Association in NSW & ACT (CAA) Annual Conference, held at Dockside Darling Harbour.

CAA represents Career Education and Career Advisers in Government, Catholic, and Independent Schools in NSW and ACT, as well as other Career Development working in associated fields. CAA promotes career education as a central and vital part of schooling and supports the work of Careers Advisers in assisting young people in making decisions about work, study, and training.

Jennine Smith, Life Membership, Rosebank College (Sydney)

Juliana Dignam, Career Adviser of the Year, St Edwards College (Broken Bay)

Joanne Kingham, Industry Collaboration, James Sheahan Catholic High School, Orange (Bathurst)

Michael Ivancic, Innovation in Careers Practice, St Gregory’s College, Campbelltown (Wollongong)

Bernadette Hicks, Industry Collaboration, Lasalle Academy (Bathurst)

Caroline Wilson, Margaret Gambley Award, Catholic Education Diocese Bathurst

Jennifer Hodson, Margaret Gambley Award , Edmund Rice College (Wollongong)

Helen Lyons, Rising Star Award St Francis College (Wollongong)


NSW Government's Community War Memorials Fund 2023/24 (Ref: 307/23)

The NSW Government established the Community War Memorials Fund to help conserve, repair and protect war memorials across NSW. Since the establishment of the program in 2008, grants have been provided for a wide range of projects including conservation assessments, honour roll repair, war memorial cleaning and conservation work, arborist advice for war memorial trees, security measures for memorials, repairs to war memorial halls and improvements to the accessibility of memorials.

Two application rounds are run each year. The rounds open on Anzac Day and Remembrance Day.

Grant applications are assessed by the State War Memorials Committee, which is comprised of senior representatives of the Returned and Services League of Australia NSW Branch (RSL NSW), NSW Public WorksHeritage NSW and the NSW Office for Veterans Affairs.

Eligible organisations including local councils and community groups can apply online for grants of up to $10,000 to conserve local war memorials.

Further information about the Community War Memorials Fund can be found on the NSW Office for Veterans Affairs website here.