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Media Release Archives


February 2013 A Bolt From The Blue

February 2013 Bethlehem College Kenyan Tragedy

January 2013 New Year Message to New Zealand's Catholic School Communities

October 2012 How Big is my World?

September 2012 A Culture of Gratitude

July 2012 How Determined Are We?

June 2012 The Power of Persuasion and influence

January 2012 The New Year

March 2011 To Proprietors, Interested Parties, Principals, Staff and Trustees of New Zealand Integrated Schools

November 2010 Four Scholarships Awarded To Catholic School Principals

October 2010 Mary MacKillop a Saint for Australia and New Zealand

September 2010 Canterbury Earthquake and Integrated Schools

September 2010 Canterbury Earthquake

May 2010 Catholic Schools Day, May 19th, 2010

January 2010 The Newest Catholic School Opens Its Doors

December 2009 Four Scholarships Awarded To Catholic School Principals

July 2009 Catholic Education Convention

January 2009 Inspiration Tempered By Realism Is The 2009 Education Touchstone

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A Bolt From The Blue

We all knew that the asteroid labeled DA 14 would come close to earth as it passed by at 27,700 kilometres above the earth in mid-February. About the same time, Pope Benedict, almost like a bolt from the blue, announced his resignation, effective February 28th, 2013. Some amongst the population might try to make a connection between these two happenings – to do so would be silly, however we could see one event coming, but not the other!!

Much has been written and spoken about the Pope's resignation, but we ought not to be surprised. He had been exhibiting signs of slowing down for the last twelve months or so. For instance, Christmas Midnight Mass at St Peter's Basilica was bought forward to 10.00pm; he was not easily able to walk up the aisle of St Peter's unaided, hence the mobile platform he used.

I applaud his courage and wisdom in resigning, leadership is not something we ought to grimly hold on to. After all, the Pope is the "Servant of the Servants of God". At 86 years of age, he deserves some years of quiet retirement since he has served his God very well over a life time. Today's world population is looking for leadership and inspiration amidst the challenges humanity faces. Spiritual leadership is mediated through humans. Pope Benedict is an astute man, deeply spiritual, both an academic and a realist. Several of his encyclicals, particularly the ones on faith and hope demonstrated he understood the big picture influences affecting people's lives.

For the future, whoever becomes the next Pope when the Conclave commences in mid-March, may not be from the pundits' lists. As Christian theology points out, God is often the God of surprises. The Christian faith is a faith not a science, and mystery plays its part. Therefore a surprise candidate may be elected.

The voting cardinals know that the Catholic Church's 1.2 billion adherents are in very large numbers in Latin America, Asia and Africa, as well as in the New World, rather than from Europe. It would be refreshing to have someone from outside of Europe.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the Archbishop of New York, is a man I greatly admire for his ability to relate to all, from dustmen through to presidents. He is in touch with people's lives and is quite inspirational – you never know what the Holy Spirit might have in mind!!

Whoever is elected, the Catholic world and the world generally will rally around him. In the very secular western world, the Papacy is still something of an enigma! For Catholics, however, the Pope is Christ's representative on earth which is wonderful and extraordinary, and a source of hope for us all!

27 February 2013

Patrick J. Lynch

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Bethlehem College Kenyan Tragedy

Dear Colleagues,

We were all shocked to learn last week of the tragic loss of life in the motor vehicle accident that killed three members of the Bethlehem College community as they were going about their generous aid project for a school community in western Kenya.

Now that the bodies of the victims have been returned to Tauranga for their upcoming funeral rites, the Integrated Schools community of New Zealand publicly expresses its collegial sympathy to the grieving families and the College community in its great loss.

At the same time we offer our active support to the College as it goes about supporting the rest of the group that was involved in the motor accident.

We applaud the College's leadership, in particular, Principal, Eion Crosbie, for the gracious way in which he has handled the media dimension of what has occurred - we are all proud of him.

In conclusion, we offer our prayerful support in this very difficult time.

February 2013

Patrick J Lynch
On behalf of the Association of Proprietors of Integrated Schools

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New Year Message to New Zealand's Catholic School Communities

Principal/Trustees & Staff of New Zealand Catholic Schools

Dear Colleagues,

Welcome to the 2013 School Year!!

  1. Introduction           
    Hopefully, you enjoyed a restful and rejuvenating holiday period and are now able to face the New Year with energy and enthusiasm.
  2. Rapidly Growing Ethnic Diversity
    Our Catholic schools are leading the way in welcoming a growing range of students and their families from an expanding number of countries.  This phenomenon, while very pronounced in the northern part of the country, is also being experienced to some extent in most parts of the nation.  This diversity is reflective of a universal Catholic Church experience in many nations.  It clearly represents a strength of our school system.
  3. Increase in Numbers of New Entrants
    This year will further demonstrate that the markedly increased number of births, apparent since 2008, is now starting to impact on many of our primary schools.  The most significant increases are among Pacific and Asian families, but not exclusively so.
  4. The Year of Faith
    No doubt the leadership of your school will be in dialogue with you about various initiatives that will take place during 2013 to mark the Year of Faith, which commenced in October 2012.  Reaching out in a variety of ways to families who are not regular Church goers, is a challenge which many of you already are very successful at.  Could I encourage you to do whatever you can do to engage your students and their families in connecting with the God of Creation, “in whom we live and move and have our being.”
  5. Catholic Schools Day May 22nd 2013
    Resources to help you prepare for this national day will be sent to each school by the end of February.  Catholic schools educate 55.5 million young people worldwide.  We are a strong international brand which is respected by large numbers of the world’s population.
  6. Excellence and Equity
    Former President Nelson Mandela speaks in his memoirs of pursuing the goal of “glittering excellence”, yet ensuring that every student is given the hand up they need in order to develop their potential.  Both these goals are fundamental to any Catholic school’s teaching and education culture.
  7. Appreciation
    As you get started into the New Year could we encourage you in your vital role of inspiring and engaging the young people in your care.  New Zealand needs to put to work every gram of leadership, whatever its form in each student.  Educators change lives and touch eternity in the process.  What a role!!

Thank you for your goodness and generosity.  We offer you our support and good will.

Wishing you every blessing.

Patrick J. Lynch and NZCEO Board & Staff
30 01 13

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How Big is my World? 

From time to time we all get frustrated by somebody’s rather narrow view of the world on a particular issue.  Talkback radio and inane conversations are often situations where strident pronouncements occur.

Despite the knowledge and skills we each have, there is always the danger that what we believe to be the case about something or other, is far from the real truth of the situation.  It is easy to run the danger of being as limited in our knowledge on a particular subject as a frog in a well.

The only way individuals can become broadly knowledgeable about as many topics as possible is to become avid seekers after knowledge and truth.  The technological revolution, far from exacerbating the haves/have nots divide, is now, via the medium of ordinary mobile phones, now greatly fostering equality of opportunity. A 2010 United Nations study found that mobile phones are one of the most effective advancements history has ever known to lift people out of poverty.  The African continent currently boasts 50% of its population using a mobile phone.

The question educators face, at whatever level in the system, is how do we entice students to become hungry for knowledge over a broad spectrum of knowledge areas?   Smart phones and various tablets that can access the internet are the superior vehicles for accelerating the knowledge revolution amongst the young.  Apps of one kind or another can reveal really exciting information which can stun the originator of a question such as this – what are the most mind blowing statistics you can find about the universe?  Young men and boys would become more engaged with their education by finding answers to such tantalising questions, which in a competitive setting, get the blood running!!

Narrowness of thought is a great blight in any human being.  We owe it to our young people to excite them about the profound information the cosmos contains. All they need is some guidance and direction to spark their enquiry and enthusiasm for knowledge.

October 2012

Patrick J. Lynch

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A Culture of Gratitude

More than one saint was of the view that if the only prayer you ever uttered was, THANK YOU, this would be more than enough in one’s relationship with God.

This fundamental appreciation of the importance of gratitude in one’s life is something countless generations of good people have come to understand and to practice.

We all have had experiences of working in places where gratitude was part of the enterprise’s culture.  Unfortunately, some of us have experienced the reverse, as well.  The difference in the dynamic of the two experiences is marked.  Satisfaction, optimism, hope, empathy, well-being and fundamental happiness accompany the positive experience. Without the oil of gratitude in one’s workplace the darker side of humanity tends to exhibit itself exposing bitterness, stinginess, envy, blame and back biting.

An analysis of what occurs when gratitude is the structure of one’s life reveals the emergence of the powerful dynamos that drive human communities forward.  These dynamos deliver the fundamentals that guide human progress:  resilience, well-being, reverence for others and a deep seated respect for those one interacts with.

It is of more than passing interest that students of work cultures and domestic setting cultures all agree that gratitude is the spiritual dynamo that enables progress to make in human communities, whatever challenges they might face.  It is the basis for building spiritual capital.

What we can seek to do is not to just build respectful relationships, it is much deeper than this.  It is built on our reverence for individuals.  Out or reverence graciousness emerges.

Graciousness enables us to make allowances for the behaviours of others, when they are discourteous, cool or distant.

The question we all need to answer from time to time is how do I express my gratitude and appreciation to those I live and work with?  The answer to this question is related to how happy you are or will become.

Patrick J. Lynch
Chief Executive Officer
September, 2012

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How Determined Are We?

A visit to almost any country in Asia quickly forces New Zealanders, and westerners generally, come to the conclusion that collectively we are regarded as a little soft and a little on the lazy and fun loving side of life. A knee-jerk reaction to this perception can hide a reality which is creeping over the western world. Asians are hungry for the many goods and services we take for granted, as well as for the life style the majority of our citizens enjoy. They are prepared to engage their prodigious work ethic to get ahead. Nobody in their right mind advocates mind and body numbing, grinding work to get ahead, However, what we cannot afford to let happen is to allow the current young generation to sit on their laurels and hope that they will be able to enjoy the good life without working hard.

Hunger for success, setting aspirational goals, pushing the boundaries, looking out for others, being bold and not lulled into a sense of false security make up the fundamental scaffolding all New Zealanders require. We once had these characteristics, but today they are not so evident in our society, since they have become eroded.

Einstein spoke of the importance of imagination over knowledge, yet do we see this expansiveness in our young people? Does the importance of developing a strong work ethic resonate in the way it could?

The reality of the globalised world is that nobody owes us a living. Those who are curious and enthusiastic will be able to learn how to learn in a dramatic fashion, since they will be self starters, innovators, movers and shakers.

Those families and schools that see the importance of student right-brain development as the driver for the characteristics that produce leaders and individuals who make things happen, they will be the ones who will strengthen New Zealand society. While the various faces of technology will be the tools, the human spirit is the engine room that largely will make things happen. We are part of the Asia-Pacific community of nations. Learning from our Asian neighbours is a sine qua non, if we are not to be left behind.

Patrick J. Lynch
Chief Executive Officer
July, 2012

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The Power of Persuasion and influence

Historically, the nature of influence and persuasion has dramatically evolved over the last one hundred and fifty years. Gone are the days when a leader stood before a crowd and simply bellowed in order to communicate with those he wished to influence. Today influence has never been easier to engage in, given the spectrum of communication devices available for use.

We are living in a transformative age where change and influence can emerge from unlikely sources. A posting on You Tube, Twitter or Facebook can rapidly become world news and change people’s lives.

The harnessing of the Internet as a significant tool for communication and influence is something leaders need to develop a strategy about. While some dismiss the power of blogs and emails to influence others, such an attitude is too dismissive.

The power of an idea, the power of images and the power of a story, along with the wrap-around coating of inspiration, these are still the fundamentals of influence in today’s world.

While people in the Middle Ages thought influence emanated from the stars in the form of a magic liquid to influence human behaviour, we now have a rather different understanding of what skills and talents are needed to touch the minds and hearts of people we might be seeking to influence or persuade. 21st century technology can be a great gift in the hands of inspirational leaders. We ought to be bold in using its various manifestations.

Patrick J. Lynch
Chief Executive Officer
June, 2012

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The New Year

Only an extreme optimist facing the New Year would venture to pronounce the problems of 2011 are behind the global community.

The first few weeks of January, however, lead one to conclude that volatility in its many guises will accompany the world again this year. This is not a pessimistic view, but simply a realistic one, in which, confusion and complaint will seize the headlines for those who find it difficult to persevere at chipping away at solutions to the difficulties the world has got itself into.

It was inspirational to see reported in early January that the mother of the young Tunisian fruit cart vendor whose immolation sparked the Arab Awakening, when she said that “dignity was more important to many Arabs than food”. What a gem of a truth. It is the kernel of the messages which promote actions for peace and social justice, which are emerging as the guiding lights of the second decade of the 21st century.

Parents and educators are wise to have a central goal in their interactions with young people, that generates hope and sketches hope-filled horizons for the future. While the unearthing and transmission of knowledge is fundamental to the education process, of more importance is to inculcate in the young respect for the correct treatment of all human beings.

Before any of the above is likely to occur, the fundamental spiritual nature of each human being needs to be recognised and spoken about. At long last the New Zealand curriculum recognizes this foundation to what occurs in our schools.  All of this is based on the wisdom of the ages and is taught by the world’s great philosophers and sages, as well as by the great religions.

In our faith based schools it is so much easier to build on this concept with the imperatives of particular faith traditions.

The presence of trust in a relationship is more likely to enable practical steps to be taken to advance the health of the relationship.  At rock bottom, trust is generated when genuine efforts are made by leaders to honour the spirit of their words. Trust breeds confidence in the intention and actions of individuals, whether in families or larger organizations.

The American Founding Fathers proclaimed, “In God we Trust”. They also knew that without trust, nobody can stand, since trust is the intangible, yet real glue of growth and development in organisations and between individuals. Fundamental to trust is a leader possessing values which reflect sound ethics.

The world is made up of fragile human beings who make mistakes, yet who are still eminently capable of great things in their lives. In tough times inspirational education builds on the spiritual, hope-filled dimension of individuals. It emphasizes that innovation, investment in individuals and collaboration in its various forms are the antidotes to the tearful and fearful souls who are cowered by tough times. Since we have created many of our problems, we can solve them. Tough times do not last – history teaches us to hope!! Good ultimately triumphs when good people seek to inspire and persuade others that tomorrow can be better than today.


Patrick J Lynch

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To Proprietors, Interested Parties, Principals, Staff and Trustees of New Zealand Integrated Schools

The February 22nd Christchurch earthquake has been the focus of the nation this past month as recovery efforts have tangibly borne wonderful transformations in the Christchurch area. Unfortunately, the tragedy in Japan has made us all realize, even more, how vulnerable nations located on the Pacific Rim of Fire actually are to movements of the earth.

As of Wednesday 23rd March 2011, all of our Integrated schools in Christchurch were back in business in one form or another, thanks to the extraordinary efforts of principals, staff, trustees and parents along with Proprietors and the Ministry of Education.

The Minister of Education, Anne Tolley is to be strongly commended for her helpful leadership in a variety of ways, which has enabled solutions to be found to difficult challenges. The strong partnership between the Government and Integrated schools has not been found wanting. Thank you Minister!!

Each Integrated school community has had its share of challenges, some much more than others. As of today the following is occurring:

  • Marian College is operating on the St Bede’s College site via a twinning arrangement with morning and afternoon ‘shifts’.
  • Catholic Cathedral College is operating on the St Thomas of Canterbury College site via a similar twinning arrangement.
  • St Mary’s School, Manchester Street is operating in the Parish Hall on the St Theresa’s School, Riccarton site.
  • St Paul’s School, Dallington, relocated after the September earthquake to the Catholic Cathedral College site is now on a site in Champion Street, which the Minister of Education made available.
  • Part of Christ The King School in Burnside has relocated to one of its neighbouring school sites in Merrin Street.
  • Other schools are operating with the provision of mobile toilets and tanker water.

Many schools have sustained damage of one kind or another but thanks to the generosity and resilience of staff and Proprietors they are up and running.

Gratitude is expressed to many Integrated schools around the nation who took in students from our Christchurch schools when significant numbers of families evacuated the City.

The Ministry of Education and the Office of the Association of Proprietors of Integrated Schools (NZCEO) will soon be in touch with Principals and trustees of schools to put in place a simple process to regularize breaches of Integration Agreements following enrolment of Christchurch students, where such a situation exists.

Gratitude is expressed to the many schools who have made substantial donations to the appeals that have been set up to channel money to various schools in the Christchurch area. This generosity is deeply appreciated by the principals, staff and trustees. Thank you.

Clearly our Christchurch colleagues are resilient, however, they have endured six months of difficulty, which has left many of them fragile and anxious. They can be assured that the rest of the Integrated Schools community in New Zealand will not let them down as they slowly get back on their feet.

Wishing you all a very restful Easter Break and asking God’s blessing on you all.

March 2011

Patrick J. Lynch

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Four Scholarships Awarded To Catholic School Principals

Latest professional development and research scholarships will benefit the Catholic educational community

Dennis Fahey, Marcellin College, Auckland, Craig McKernan, St Francis Xavier School, Whangarei, Karl Zimmerman, St Anne’s School, Wanganui, and Margaret Coleman, Our Lady Star of the Sea School, Sumner, are the latest Catholic school Principals to receive Catholic leadership scholarships, awarded by the New Zealand Catholic Education Office.

The scholarships provide significant financial support for the principals’ professional study and for research they are undertaking which will benefit the Catholic schooling system.

Dennis Fahey will visit a number of New Zealand schools to learn about best practice in developing student self management.  He will then do follow up work with other principals.

Craig McKernan will undertake a number of leadership papers through the Australian Catholic University.  He has a particular interest in leadership styles, and intends to share his learning with principals in the Northland area, and in Auckland.

Karl Zimmerman is undertaking leadership papers through Massey University.  He is proactive in encouraging potential leaders, and is planning to develop research work on Catholic education in New Zealand.

Margaret Coleman plans to explore how the use of professional supervision can further develop the leadership skills of principals in Catholic schools in New Zealand. As well as attending training on professional supervision, she will conduct interviews with a number of principals in New Zealand and Australia to establish the methods they currently use to support their practice.  She hopes to build a network of appropriately qualified supervisors, and promote the uptake of supervision by senior educators..

NZCEO is delighted to be able to support outstanding leadership in Catholic schools through these scholarships.

30 Nov 2010

Patrick J. Lynch
(04) 496-1739 Wk
(027 4) 905 396 Mobile.

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Mary MacKillop a Saint for Australia and New Zealand

On 17th October Mary MacKillop, Mother Mary of the Cross, co-foundress of the Sisters of St Joseph of the Sacred Heart, will become a Saint of the Church, when she is canonised in Rome. 

Mary MacKillop was born in Melbourne in 1842, and as a member of a large and poor family she early developed a love for education, a passion for justice and a deep reliance on God in the most trying circumstances.  In her early 20s she committed herself to education, focusing on the educational needs of families in rural and isolated areas in Australia, and then in New Zealand also.  Her philosophy was summed up in her statement “Never see a need without doing something about it.”

In 1883 the first Sisters of St Joseph of the Sacred Heart came to New Zealand, to open a school in Temuka, and in the following ten years another nine parish primary schools were opened in rural New Zealand.  By 1963, 163 Sisters were teaching in 36 primary schools and three secondary schools throughout the country. 

Since then, Sisters have diversified into a range of ministries, including pastoral care in parishes, schools, family support and care services in rural and isolated communities, and educational work in various organisations.

The New Zealand Catholic Education Office, along with New Zealand’s Catholic schools, warmly congratulates the Sisters of St Joseph (affectionately referred to as the Brown Joes) for their long and illustrious contribution to the education of thousands of New Zealanders.  Vision, dedication and enthusiasm are the hallmarks of good education – the Sisters can proudly stand and honestly accept this descriptive accolade.

Mary MacKillop’s Canonisation will be celebrated as follows in New Zealand:

Wellington Archdiocese: November 1, 5.30pm at Sacred Heart Cathedral.
Dunedin Diocese: November 7, 11am at Arrowtown (where a school was established in 1897).
Auckland Diocese: November 13, 11.30am St Patrick’s Cathedral.
Christchurch Diocese: November 20, 1pm at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, and November 21, 11am at St Joseph’s Church, Temuka.
Hamilton Diocese: November 28, 2pm at St Mary’s Church, Rotorua.
Palmerston North Diocese: December 4, 11am at Holy Spirit Cathedral.

For more information about Mary MacKillop visit

For information about the Sisters of St Joseph visit

Many New Zealanders will join in congratulating the Sisters of St Joseph – they have served the nation well.

15 October 2010

Patrick J. Lynch
(04) 496-1739 Wk
(027 4) 905 396 Mobile.

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Canterbury Earthquake and Integrated Schools

  • Proprietors of Integrated Schools
  • Principals and Staff of Integrated Schools
  • Interested Parties

Dear Colleagues,


  1. This is a brief update on the state of our Integrated schools in the Canterbury region.
  2. Overall, our schools have escaped major damage as a result of the earthquake. Several have significant damage and one will not be able to be used for a long time. In this instance students will either be relocated or some other provision made for their ongoing education.
  3. Superb work has been done by the respective Proprietors, Principals and Trustees of each of these schools to ascertain the safety issues that have had to be addressed. At the same time excellent interaction with the Ministry of Education at national and regional levels has also been occurring.
  4. The Minister of Education, The Honourable Anne Tolley, has orally been in touch, expressing her empathy, support and good will for our Integrated schools – this has been sincerely appreciated.
  5. Most schools will probably be open by Monday 13th. This, however, will be dependent on civil and medical authorities being satisfied that safety, water and sanitary issues are at a satisfactory operational standard. Effectively, Boards of Trustees will be guided in their decision making about opening their schools by local and regional authorities.
  6. There is no doubt that psychological and sociological pressures are significant issues for many adults, and particularly children in the region, as the trauma of what has happened and continues to happen, becomes more apparent.
  7. On behalf of our national Integrated school system, support, good will and empathy are extended to all of our Canterbury colleagues. We are all in admiration for the way in which they have handled this unexpected disaster.

Offering you all support and best wishes.


8 September 2010

Patrick J. Lynch
(04) 496-1739 Wk
(027 4) 905 396 Mobile.

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Canterbury Earthquake

  • Principals, Staff and Trustees
  • Proprietor of Catholic Schools

Dear Colleagues,


  1. On behalf of the Directors of the New Zealand Catholic Education Office and the staff of NZCEO, I offer you empathy and active support in what is a significant challenge for many of you.
  2. The shock of the earthquake and the clean up associated with the aftermath are all difficult issues for each of you!
  3. Given the strength of your collaborative Cantabrian spirit, plus your entrepreneurial get up and go, you will get on top of the situation you face.
  4. Besides seeking guidance from your Proprietor regarding any damage your school property may have sustained, up to date information on the wider administrative issues from the Ministry of Education and civil authorities can be viewed on the Ministry of Education website . Additionally this Help Line is available: 0800 225590 from 8.00am until 5.00pm daily. A separate message has been sent to your Proprietor on the subject.
  5. On behalf of our Catholic Integrated school system, please be assured of our support, prayers and goodwill. If there is anything we can do to assist you, please be in touch.

With very best wishes


7 September 2010

Patrick J. Lynch
(04) 496-1739 Wk
(027 4) 905 396 Mobile.

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Catholic Schools Day, May 19th, 2010

  1. The 240 Catholic schools throughout the country will celebrate Catholic Schools’ Day on May 19th. The occasion is one where each school actively acknowledges its connection with the Catholic national system of schools comprising 66,000 students.
  2. The theme of the day is, “Be the Change”. This is a rallying call challenging each school to reflect and review what they are doing to ensure delivery of an education which is engaging for students, enabling them to grow into contributing global citizens.
  3. Part of the ethos of Catholic schools is to nurture leadership skills in students so they are able to make the world a better place through creativity and service to others.
  4. By being part of an international brand which is networked throughout the world, Catholic schools place great emphasis on excellence and achievement, underpinned by values which are widely recognised as foundational for a fulfilling and happy life. The schools make no apology for placing an emphasis on spiritual and faith development as the dynamo for positive action in New Zealand society and in the world at large.
  5. The vast majority of our schools will mark the special day in some way or other.

18 May 2010

Patrick J. Lynch
(04) 496-1739 Wk
(027 4) 905 396 Mobile.

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Leadership Of The Secondary Principals Association Of New Zealand

It has just been announced that Patrick Walsh, Principal of John Paul College, Rotorua, has been elected as the new President of the Secondary Principals Association of New Zealand. His Deputy is Paul Daley, the principal of Sancta Maria College, Botany, Auckland.

This is an historic occasion to have the leadership of this national principals’ association headed by two principals from Catholic Colleges.

Previously Pat Lynch, CEO NZCEO and Paul Ferris, principal of Kavanagh College, Dunedin have been Presidents of SPANZ.

It is a great tribute to Patrick Walsh and Paul Daley that they have been so honoured by their colleagues. These leadership roles are very important since they involve close inaction with the Government, the political establishment, the education sector, the media and the public of New Zealand.

The milestone is also a recognition that Catholic colleges are seen to actively contribute to the well-being of New Zealand.

Congratulations are extended to both men.

2 March 2010

Patrick J. Lynch
(04) 496-1739 Wk
(027 4) 905 396 Mobile.

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The Newest Catholic School Opens Its Doors

Early in February the latest New Zealand Catholic School opens its doors to cater for the Catholic population of the new suburb of Flat Bush in Auckland.  The primary school, which is on the Sancta Maria College site, will form part of the Sancta Maria Catholic School campus.  The new school is called:  Sancta Maria Catholic Primary School.

Congratulations are extended from our national school system to Bishop Patrick Dunn and his team who have worked hard over a number of years to bring this school to reality.

Congratulations are also extended to Principal Gina Benade and her staff, and also to the Board of Trustees as they embark on their exciting venture.

The Government has provided 85% of the capital cost of the new school, for which we can all be very grateful.

Over the last sixteen years the New Zealand Catholic bishops have opened fourteen new schools in various parts of the country, which is a wonderful gesture of confidence in our school system.  These schools are all doing well  Certainly, the future belongs to those who give the next generation hope.

In welcoming the newest school community to our national network, encouragement and good will are extended to everyone associated with our schools as they continue to strive for all that is good and ideal.  We recall that the Second Vatican Council was simple in its statement about why the Church and our school system exist:  “That God’s kingdom may come, and that the salvation of the whole human race may come to pass”.  (Gaudium et Spes, 45a).  Our schools are strongly committed to promoting the well-being of New Zealand society and to doing their bit in addressing the challenges of the global community,

As a Catholic community we believe in the future and as people of hope we seek to inspire those we serve.

29 January 2010

Patrick J. Lynch
(04) 496-1739 Wk
(027 4) 905 396 Mobile.

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Four Scholarships Awarded To Catholic School Principals

Latest professional development and research scholarships will benefit the Catholic educational community

Anne Miles, McAuley High School, Otahuhu, John Young, St Joseph’s School, Upper Hutt, Stasia Kennedy, St Joseph’s School, Levin and Marie Barrett, St John Bosco School, New Plymouth, are the latest Catholic School Principals to receive Catholic leadership scholarships, awarded by the New Zealand Catholic Education Office.  Anne Miles and John Young were awarded the ‘Spotless’ Scholarship, sponsored by the Auckland-based company, Spotless. 

The scholarships provide significant financial support for the principals’ professional study and for research they are undertaking which will benefit the Catholic schooling system.

Anne Miles will travel to the United Kingdom to study how low decile schools are raising academic achievement, and the link between Catholic Character and achievement.

Stasia Kennedy will travel to the United States to work with Dr Ken Merrell of the Oregon Resiliency Project focusing on the development of strong young people, and the use of social-emotional assets and resiliency scales.

John Young will travel to South Australia to work with Professor Alan Reid on school self review.

Marie Barrett is attending workshops on Mindful Leadership, and will further develop her work with Dr Samir Heble, Clinical Director of Mental Health for the Taranaki Health Board, so that mindful living and learning becomes embedded in the school.

NZCEO is delighted to be able to support outstanding leadership in Catholic schools, through these scholarships.

28 November 2009

Patrick J. Lynch
(04) 496-1739 Wk
(027 4) 905 396 Mobile.

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Catholic Education Convention

The Catholic Education Convention took place on July 29th – 30th, 2009 in the Wellington Convention Centre.

Over 1,000 people attended from all around New Zealand, making it a landmark event in the history of New Zealand’s Catholic schools.  Today Catholic Schools educate 66,000 students in 239 schools, they make up 75% of the number of students in State Integrated Schools.

The theme of the gathering was, “Be The Change”.  This focused on the special character ethos of the schools.  Seminars were presented by leading principals and teachers who provided ideas and inspiration, which will enable participants to go back to their schools and put into practice what they have seen and heard from others.

Highlights of the gathering were addresses by Professor Gerald Grace from the University of London and Professor Michael Gallagher whose address was presented by video link from Dublin. Professor Gallagher lectures at the Vatican’s Gregorian University.

The Minister of Education, the Honourable Anne Tolley, addressed the gathering offering encouragement to the teachers, principals, trustees and others associated with Catholic schools. She urged them to continue to deliver high quality special character education, which contributes to the mosaic of diversity which is a strength of New Zealand’s education system. She was well received by the gathering.

Catholic schools seek to positively contribute to the well-being of New Zealand society and the global community.  They are grateful for the support they receive from Government and the wider community.

31 July 2009

Patrick J. Lynch
(04) 496-1739 Wk
(027 4) 905 396 Mobile.

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Inspiration Tempered By Realism Is The 2009 Education Touchstone

The recent inauguration of President Barrack Obama not only marks a dramatic milestone in American history, it also represents a recurring theme where inspiration provided by a leader taps the aspirations of many millions of people, not only in the United States of America, but elsewhere in the world.

Human beings always respond to being challenged, particularly when they see that their lives and the lives of those about them can be bettered. If the 21st century is calling out for anything it is deeply receptive to leaders, at whatever level in society, who put before people a vision for the betterment of their world and at the same time provide the inspiration to do something about it.

Inspiration is not a commonly found commodity. It is however, found in the behaviour of mentors and achievers. Principals and teachers are in privileged positions to provide the inspiration many young people require to spark their engagement with the world and to set them off on the path to success.

As the world faces financial uncertainty, principals and teachers are able to demonstrate that with inspiration, resilience and hard work, their charges will be able to better cope with the challenges they encounter.

History has taught us that the strongest asset we all have is the human spirit’s capacity for enduring hope in the face of adversity. This is a lesson all schools have the responsibility of conveying to their students.

30 January 2009

Patrick J. Lynch
(04) 496-1739 Wk
(027 4) 905 396 Mobile.

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