Last Friday we celebrated Mary Aikenhead Day. The presence of several Sisters of Charity made our day even more special: Sr Cate, Sr Christine, Sr Clare, Sr Maureen, Sr Pauline, Sr Deidre, and Sr Dorothy. Both Sr Clare and Sr Maureen are past students of MSM and their ongoing pride in our College is truly evident.
22 July is the Feast Day of Venerable Mary Aikenhead and this year marks 165 years since her passing and Sr Clare had a special gift to present to each of the Sisters.

Sr Pauline wrote to me during this week to say “Thank you” for our warm hospitality and she specifically commented on “Your young women, such a credit to you and your staff”.

Our day commenced with a Welcome to Country. We thank Fr Gerry for celebrating the Eucharist. It was wonderful to see so many students actively participating in our celebration through activities such as the processions and readings. Our Eucharists are always enriched by the sharing of the talents of our music, dance and drama students. Thank you for your amazing contributions! 
At the conclusion of the Eucharist, we acknowledged staff who had reached the significant milestone of 10, 20 and 25 years of committed service to the community of MSM.

Congratulations to the following staff who were presented with their 10 years of service award by Sr Christine:
  • Ms Ros Collier
  • Ms Jo Desailly
  • Ms Linda Statham
  • Ms Suellen Yung
  • Mr Gabe Couper.
Sr Clare presented the following staff with their 20 years of service award:
  • Ms Maree Swanson
  • Ms Miriam Townsley
  • Mr Aaron Besch.
Sr Cate presented Ms Annette Gray with her 25 years of service award. Thank you, Ms Gray, for your wonderful contributions to MSM.

Thank you to these staff and all our staff members for the care and dedication to our students every day.
Thank you to our staff who supported the various Mary Aikenhead Day activities, including behind the scenes, throughout the day. I extend a special “thank you” to Ms Simpson and Mrs Godden for their hard work to ensure that we all had a great day!

In faith and love.

Sharon Volp
Join the Conversation with MSM Alumni
Join MSM Alumni for breakfast and gain insight into their personal journey from MSM to their chosen career pathway. Throughout the morning, parents and students will be given the opportunity to speak to several Alumni from varied industries. Light breakfast included. Book your tickets today!
Be quick! Tickets are selling fast!
This event provides an opportunity for MSM Mothers to indulge in a beautiful lunch and support the MSM Foundation’s Light the Way Capital Campaign through our raffle with some great prizes up for grabs! Gather your friends and book your table of 12, or seats now to avoid disappointment. Bookings are essential and ticket sales will close on Friday 4 August, if not sold out prior. 
Meet MSM Alumni From Various Industries
Meet MSM Alumni like Grace Egan at our Careers Conversation Breakfast. Grace realised that there was a plethora of opportunities for women in STEM, and pursued job roles in the energy industry, where she landed a full-time role during her final year of university. Grace, along with other MSM Alumni from various industries will  provide insight to current students into how to turn a passion into career.

Raffle Open to Everyone! 
Be in it to win it! Click here for a full list of amazing prizes up for grabs!. The raffle is open to everyone, no need to be present to win.

The funds raised at the 2023 Mothers’ Lunch are directed to the MSM Foundation’s Light the Way Capital Campaign to assist the enhancement of new educational facilities for our MSM students.
Immerse yourself in ART, DRAMA, MUSIC, and DANCE at the 2023 Spirit of the Arts Festival: Vitality on Tuesday 29 August from 5 - 8pm. All welcome to this free event!
Next week is Library & Information Week with the theme 'Where's the SOURCE? ', so, libraries are returning to the fundamentals and the concept of the ‘source'.

Chat GPT and other generative AI can ostensibly gather infinite amounts of information to generate content that can serve as independent sources. During Library & Information Week, the emphasis for students will be on questioning how they can confirm the accuracy of the information they find and asking how it influences their research methods or affects their ideas.

A 'source' is a mode of telling the truth. Students must understand where information originated, who created and possesses it, and when it was created.

As technology evolves, there are concerns about students using AI tools regarding:
  • Plagiarism and the possibility that a student hands in assessment that is AI generated.
  • Ethics: AI tools collect content from a variety of sources and lack credit for the creators
  • Biases and misinformation.
The teachers at MSM assist learners to comprehend when and how AI can be advantageous, as well as when its use constitutes plagiarism. We are presently investigating the various AI tools designed specifically to identify generated text in order to support students' understanding of AI when used for assessment.

“So, for this Library & Information Week, it is important that our students grab the source of their choice and really get to the bottom of those ingredients” (alia, 2023).
Mary Aikenhead Day
Our MSM Family enjoyed a beautiful celebration of our Charism at Mary Aikenhead day on Friday 21 July. This year marks 165 years since the death of Venerable Mary Aikenhead, the foundress of the Sisters of Charity. Our College Community was delighted to welcome seven Sisters of Charity, Mr Gary Humphries (Trustee, Mary Aikenhead Ministries), Mr Peter Kelly (Ministry Leader, Mary Aikenhead Education) and Ms Mandy Anderson (College Board Chair) to our beautiful College Mass, presided by Fr Gerry Kalinowski from Jubilee Parish. As the Sisters departed the College, one of them whispered to me, “you must be very proud of your girls,” and indeed we are!

Our Mass was a prayerful celebration of the life and legacy of Mary Aikenhead and the hundreds of women who have followed in her footsteps of charity, brought to life by our wonderful choir, percussionists and guitar ensemble, drama students, dancers and lectors. At the end of Mass, we blessed and commissioned our new College Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), signifying our commitment to journey with First Nations people as we seek to build a more just Australia for all people. To mark this special occasion, four of our First Nations students – Eugenie, Scarlett, Lila and Zara – designed and decorated four beautiful Reconciliation Candles using traditional designs and symbols. I thank our Artistic Administrator Ms Bateman for her support with this beautiful project, and those students for so generously sharing their talents with our community.
Faithful to the Sister’s fourth vow to creatively seek out and serve the poor of our time, our whole community engaged in special mission activities, designed to educate about the Charity charism and provide much needed support to the poor, disadvantaged and vulnerable in our world. Amongst these were:
  • Our Year 9 students, whose Welcome Walk raised more than $1,600 for the Romero Centre, who support Refugees and Asylum Seekers who now call Australia Home.
  • Our Year 10 students, who worked with Zonta Pine Rivers to prepare and pack 400 sterile birthing kits that will be sent to women in developing countries who do not have access to safe birthing facilities. We thank Zonta Pine Rivers for their generous donation of the materials for 200 of these kits.
  • Our Year 11 students, who painted miniature terracotta pots, to be sent to the Diversional Therapy teams at St Vincent’s Aged Care.
Our day concluded with two wonderful student-designed Spirit initiatives that were new to the College this year. Our Cultural Captains Poppy and Zoe put together the most wonderful display of creativity and enterprise with their Sustainable Fashion Parade, featuring 10 design teams and some truly spectacular creations! And our House Captains were responsible for an outstanding display of House pride as they led their houses through the complex choreography in our first Interhouse Lip Sync Battle. Congratulations to Stewart House, whose rendition of Taylor Swift’s Love Story stole the judge’s hearts!
Catholic Education Week
Happy Catholic Education Week to all in our community. This year’s theme is Communities of Faith, Hope and Love. Mt St Michael’s College is one of 313 Queensland Catholic schools, educating 160 000 students and employing more than 21 000 staff. Catholic schools strive to make a difference in the lives of all in our community, and are places of welcome, inclusion, respect and love. MSM is a proud Catholic Education community and this week we affirm our commitment to help our young people to grow into all they are meant to be.
Recently, College Captains, Emily and Breeze, announced a new initiative to Mt St Michael’s College: the MSM Chop. This event will provide the opportunity for Year 12 students to donate their hair to be made into wigs as well as raise funds for our school fundraiser, Wakitikimi.

For the event to take place, we are in need of a number of qualified hairdressers that would be extremely generous in giving their time to assist. Our College Captains would be extremely appreciative if any parents would be able to consider assisting us or are aware of hairdressers that may be so kind in helping. The event will take place from approximately 12.30 to 1.40pm on 23 August. If there is any interest, please contact Thank you kindly!

Attendance at School
Regular attendance at school is critical for your daughter’s learning and development. If your daughter is going to be absent during the term, parents need to request approval for this absence in writing from Ms Volp. While the value of a family vacation is accepted, as is the occasional need for attendance at events in term time, priority must be given to regular school attendance. This is particularly the case if your daughter’s absence will involve missing assessment.

Extension Requests
There are circumstances that arise where your daughter can apply for an extension to an assessment deadline. Please note that, as per QCAA guidelines, family holidays during term time are not valid reasons for an extension. If your daughter falls behind in her studies, generally through illness or misadventure, then she is entitled to apply to modify her assessment deadlines. If your daughter feels that she may need to negotiate her deadlines, then I strongly encourage her to have a conversation with either Ms Larkings, Program Leader Middle School, for students in Years 7 – 9 or Mrs Kean, Program Leader Senior School, for students in Years 10 - 12. Ms Larkings and Mrs Kean are in the best position to ascertain whether your daughter will meet the requirements for adjustments to be made. Please note that any request must be made at least 48 hours before the due date.

Please note that if your daughter is unwell during the term, her focus needs to be on improving her health so that she is well enough to return to the classroom. She can access the content missed through the class OneNote upon her return and ask a classroom buddy to share any other relevant information with her. If she needs to modify her deadlines, she can approach the relevant Program Leader.

Absences when Assessment is Due
If your daughter is absent on a day when she has an assignment due, your daughter is still expected to submit her assessment digitally using the process required for the specific subject. If your daughter is absent on the day that she is scheduled to sit an examination, please note that she will be required to complete the examination when she is back at the College in a catch- up session during the school day. Students will be expected to complete their missed examination as soon as practicable.

Year 11 2024 Subject Selection Processes
The week has marked a milestone for our Year 10 students as they have commenced with their SET planning process. The Year 10 students were engaged with Curriculum Leaders and Senior Teachers on Monday night at the Year 11 2024 Subject Selection evening. From 8 August, they will be engaging in their SET plan interviews. These meetings allow students and families to gain valuable insights into the different pathways that are available in Years 11 and 12. At present, all interviews are scheduled to conclude by 10 August. Year 10 students then have until Monday 21 August to submit their finalised Year 11 subject preferences into Web Preferences using the instructions that were distributed at the Subject Selection Evening.
Year 10 2024 Subject Selection Processes
Year 9 students are all invited to engage with the Year 10 Subject Selection Evening on Tuesday 1 August. It will commence at 5pm in the Sophia Centre and will conclude by 6:45pm. This evening will provide students and families with the opportunity to learn about the curriculum pathways available in Year 10. Curriculum leaders and Year 10 teachers will present information about each subject on offer and will be able to address any questions. Students in Year 9 have until 21 August to submit their finalised Year 10 subject preferences into Web Preferences using the instructions that will be distributed at the Subject Selection Evening.
Year 7 and 9 Individual Student NAPLAN Reports
Year 7 and Year 9 students have been given their individual NAPLAN student reports this week. From 2023, new standards were introduced to NAPLAN reporting. This reporting replaces the previous numerical NAPLAN reporting bands and national minimum standards. Education ministers agreed 2023 was the right time to introduce this change alongside moving NAPLAN to March.
Proficiency standards provide clear information on student achievement. They are set at a challenging but reasonable level expected for the child at the time of NAPLAN testing, based mainly on what has been taught in previous years of schooling.

There are 4 proficiency levels:

• Exceeding - The student’s result exceeds expectations at the time of testing.
• Strong - The student’s result meets challenging but reasonable expectations at the time of testing.
• Developing - The student’s result indicates that they are working towards expectations at the time of testing.
• Needs additional support - The student’s result indicates that they are not achieving the learning outcomes expected at the time of testing. They are likely to need additional support to progress satisfactorily.

The NAPLAN student report shows a proficiency scale for each assessment area (numeracy, reading, writing, spelling and grammar and punctuation) with a student’s result shown as a black dot on the scale. The report continues to show each child’s achievement against the national average for their year (shown as a black triangle) and the range of achievement for the middle 60% of students in their year level (shown as a light shaded rectangle).

Please refer to the attached factsheet for information about the individual student report.


Think Pink Drive is running throughout the month of August. Students are asked to donate, pads, tampons, menstrual cups, period underwear or thin washers. These will go to Share the Dignity. By donating period products we will ensure women, girls and menstruators who are experiencing or are at risk of domestic violence, homelessness or poverty, have access to period products when they need them.


Our Year 7 Japanese students made kyaraben (character lunch boxes) for Japanese class. Margot’s winning bento was the cute Rilakkuma (bear). Students then enjoyed their nutritious and appetizing bentos whilst watching “Bento Harassment” in Japanese. In this film, single mother Kaori creates embarrassingly cute bentos with messages for her rebellious teenage daughter in the hope of opening up a line of communication between them. 


Congratulations to our Year 12.1 Debating Team who competed in the second round of finals against Cleveland District State High School this week. Whilst it was a good debate, our team was unsuccessful in progressing to the next stage of the competition.


Thirty of our Year 11 students recently enjoyed the opportunity to attend the UQ World Religions Symposium. Along with students from other schools, they spent the day with scholars in the School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry. Students participated in sessions on Islam and society, sacred texts in Hinduism and the relationship between religion and science as well as being prompted to consider the value of tertiary study in the Humanities. 


Today (28 July) is Schools Tree Day, and to celebrate, Environment Group enjoyed some tree-themed activities during their meeting this week. Colouring bookmarks, completing find-a-words, making posters and creating leaf rubbings enabled students to mindfully reflect on the wonder and awe that trees inspire. Remembering the many benefits trees bring to our physical and spiritual wellbeing helps us appreciate the role these organisms play in improving biodiversity, health, water, air and soil quality and recommit to being good stewards of creation. 

Bastille Day was celebrated with pain au chocolat today at MSM. Pastries proved a popular way to commemorate France’s national day. Vive la France.
The Faculty of Science at QUT partnered with Street Science to deliver a presentation on Climate and Atmospheric Sciences to Year 9 students at MSM. This presentation compliments the Year 9 ACARA curriculum through the topics of Chemical Sciences, where students investigated ocean acidification last term, and Biological Sciences, where students explore impacts on ecosystems, and how these impact populations of organisms later this term. 
This was a great opportunity for Year 9 students to be engaged by exciting demonstrations that links human activity to climate change and provided insight to the relationships between our atmosphere, hydrosphere and biosphere. 

The kitchen garden offers Design Technology students a unique and hands-on learning experience. Aimed as an integrated component of the new Technologies curriculum, the kitchen garden combines elements of design, technology, and sustainability to cultivate a rich educational environment. 

First and foremost, the kitchen garden serves as an interactive classroom, providing students with a practical understanding of food production, nutrition, and horticulture. Students engage in the entire process, planting and harvesting a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, and herbs. By actively participating in these activities, students develop essential skills such as problem-solving, critical thinking, and teamwork. Ultimately, it equips students with the knowledge and tools necessary to become responsible global citizens through educated food choices focusing on the support of local sources and decreasing food wastage. 

The kitchen garden also fosters an understanding of sustainability and environmental stewardship. Students gain insight into the ecological impact of food production, composting, and the responsible use of resources. They explore concepts like organic gardening, permaculture, and the importance of biodiversity in creating resilient ecosystems. The kitchen garden thus serves as a living laboratory, empowering students to make informed decisions regarding food choices and environmental sustainability. 


The State Honours Ensemble Program offered by the QLD Conservatorium of Music (Griffith University) is a choral and ensemble extension musical activity for students who show high levels of interest and skills on their instruments. The SHEP South-East QLD Program and the SHEP Brisbane Program were offered during Semester 1 and MSM students Amy (Year 8), Charlotte (Year 12), Sophie (Year 11), Clare (Year 12), Alyssa (Year 11) and Mabel (Year 10) were among the many students benefiting from this enriching educational program.

 “During the recent holidays, I had the privilege of taking part in the State Honours Ensemble Program (SHEP) for 2023 along with several other students. SHEP is an enriching educational program designed to nurture and advance students’ musical talents. Throughout an intensive two-day camp, I had the chance to connect with fellow music enthusiasts from across Queensland. I thoroughly enjoyed my time and am immensely grateful for this opportunity I have had during high school.” Charlotte - Year 12 (Voice) 

 “I really enjoyed singing with people from other schools and learning new, different repertoire.” Amy - Year 8 (Voice) 


MSM Year 12 students, Shelby, Emily, Elise and Hannah were lucky enough to attend the After the Siren Workshop, hosted by Griffith University Australia Sports College in collaboration with the Runaway Bay Sports and Leadership Excellence Centre. 

This workshop assists elite senior school athletes with relevant information and advice regarding what they might experience in the professional sporting environment after school. Drugs in sport, leadership, mental performance, preparation, and training, alongside the importance of utilising social media for athlete profiles and branding as well as highlighting some of the mistakes that can be made with social media and how to avoid them were all topics covered throughout the day. The students also heard about the importance of recovery, nutrition, lifestyle balance and gratitude when chasing their dreams and achieving goals in sport. Hearing from Riley Day (Australian Track and Field athlete) and Matt McShane (Australian Wheelchair Basketballer) cemented some of these theories. This was a wonderful experience with valuable advice for our students. 

Thank you to our MSM Aerobics team who performed at this week's assembly.

Meeting Updates are posted on the P&F Facebook Page and MSM Alumni Facebook Pages.
2023 P&F Events Schedule
Term 3
P&F Meeting Monday 7 August 6pm
P&F Mothers Lunch Friday 25 August 12pm
P&F Meeting Monday 4 September 6pm
Term 4
P&F AGM & Meeting Monday 6 November 6pm

2023 Term Dates

Term 2
Monday 17 April – Friday 16 June 
Term 3
Monday 10 July – Friday 15 September 
Term 4
Tuesday 3 October – Friday 24 November (Years 7-11)

Click here to view the 2024 term dates.
Help Support the MSM Environment Group

Support the MSM Environment Group by donating your eligible containers! Bring your containers to school or use our scheme ID when returning to your local depot. Your donations will go towards funding our current and future environmental initiatives.

Mt St Michael's College scheme ID: C10333591
Slow down!

The Brisbane City Council, in coordination with The Gap Ward Office, recently erected an additional 40 km/h school zone limit and traffic signs facing incoming traffic along Elimatta Drive and Aloomba Road following a request from Mt St Michael’s College to investigate the traffic management in the school vicinity. A safety project endorsed by Mt St Michael’s College’s Work Health and Safety (WHS) Committee.
Parents are reminded, for the safety of everyone, to DROP students off in the LOADING ZONE area outside the Ionian Centre and avoid areas marked with yellow lines which is against road safety rules. This is dangerous as it blocks other driver’s visibility and obstructs cars from moving around.
Onsite parking in the College grounds; Grantuly, undercover in the Ionian Centre and within the campus near the Sophia Centre is only permitted for staff. In consideration of our neighbours, please refrain from parking across driveways, adhere to the 40 km speed limit and be considerate of those living around the College when dropping and picking up students. Please do not drop off or pick up students within the College grounds.

In consideration for our neighbours, where possible please avoid leaving your motor running, especially when parked outside a home.
Now available on the College APP!
Mt St Michael’s College is pleased to bring to you the MSM Business Directory. Accessed through our website and APP, this online portal, profiles businesses and provides opportunities to connect with the wider MSM community to promote your services, sales and special offers. 

Many business owners profiled in the MSM Business Directory are long-term friends of the College. They include current and past parents, local businesses and alumni who, together show a commitment to Mt St Michael’s College and support for MSM events, fundraisers and initiatives. 

If you would like to be included in the online MSM Business Directory, simply email

For more information please click here
Mt St Michael's College
67 Elimatta Drive
Ashgrove, QLD 4060

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