Meet Jane McDonald Head of Religious Education
New Head of Religious Education Mrs McDonald has come home.
Educated at Australia’s first Dominican school, St Mary’s Maitland, and living the Dominican charism ever since, Mrs McDonald also taught Religious Education (RE) here in the 1980s.
“I’ve worked with a number of religious congregational schools but it’s lovely to be home again with the Dominicans”, she says.
She has an impressive academic record with a Bachelor of Arts, Diploma of Education, Masters of Arts (Theological Studies) and Masters of Education (Religion Studies with thesis) to her name. She has taught English, History and Music in the past but early in her career decided to specialise in the teaching of Religion.
After teaching in various Catholic schools, Mrs McDonald had a stint in the Catholic Education Office in Wollongong. Working there for six years, she ran professional development for teachers, organised Diocesan social justice and liturgy days for students and collaborated on RE curriculum design for schools across NSW. She also was a founding teacher at St John the Evangelist Catholic High School, Nowra when it began 27 years ago with Year 7 only and five teachers, building up year by year to become the great school it is today.
With nine other religious education staff to lead and Years 7, 8, 10, 11 and 12 classes in her teaching load, Mrs McDonald is greatly enjoying her return to Santa. She says the girls of Santa Sabina Middle and Senior Years are engaged and keen.
“We have a fantastic time in class”, she says. “The students have a strong sense of spirituality. Their motivation makes teaching them delightful”.
“In Religious Education our HSC results are well and truly above the State average – there must be a very strong teaching and learning culture at Santa Sabina for that to happen”.