From humble beginnings in a former home on site at 90 South Beach Road, Lisieux Catholic Primary School has flourished as a learning community of choice for many Torquay families who now recognise the school as one of innovation and contemporary learning opportunities.
“2018 was an incredible foundation year for us,” says Principal, Dr Susan Ryan.
“And in 2019 we have grown enormously, not just physically, but in an organic way as community dedicated to best practice, one that strives to nurture each learner.”
The Carmel Centre is now dedicated as a space for the school’s 52 Prep students, while Years 1-6 are based in the new, contemporary building, featuring lightfilled, flexible spaces. Currently, there are just under 150 students enrolled at Lisieux with plans for Stage 2 future development underway.
Asked what the school’s priorities for learning are, Dr Ryan identified the following:
• As a Catholic community, the school is committed to knowing and valuing each student as individuals, and to inspiring
them to flourish as young people of faith who will strive to make a difference in the world.
• Lisieux adopts a Positive Education philosophy and uses this as a framework for building a culture of wellbeing and relationship-focused learning. Daily meditation, focus on “an attitude of gratitude” and understanding of our own character
strengths are integrated into school practice.
• There is a dedicated commitment to Outdoor Learning opportunities, with the school having an Outdoor Discovery Centre, bush area for exploration and features such as a dry creek bed and vegetable gardens as well as chickens and a pet pig, Mavis. One of the school’s goals is to improve the community’s overall attitude to caring for the environment, and students learn, in a hands-on way about sustainability, recycling and permaculture through a range of ventures such as cooking, worm farming, composting and recycled art projects.
• A number of specialist programs has been developed at school level to enrich the cultivation of creativity and curiosity and nurture a sense of wonder. The Lisieux curriculum gives students freedom and permission to explore, question, evaluate and create.
“Most importantly, we want learning to be engaging, relevant and fun,” says Dr Ryan.
“As our journey has continued, improvements have taken place in our physical space constantly, and we have designed our programs to foster growth in resilience, critical thinking and independence. Being part of such a vibrant learning environment has really been a joy for all those involved in this development.”
The school is currently accepting enrolment applications for 2020 and offers small group or individual tours for interested families.