Our College holds the care, safety and wellbeing of each individual student as our fundamental responsibility. We are committed to providing a nurturing environment where respect, dignity and support for every person are the underpinning values of our community.

As an integral element of an inspiring and rewarding education, Catherine McAuley College Bendigo (CMCB) offers a formative and responsive student pastoral care program. We nurture our students in a safe environment, to become confident and independent young adults.

We acknowledge that all students grow and develop differently, therefore our structures and programs support students’ academic as well as social and emotional learning.

Each student has a Student Advocate, who actively monitors and supports their learning and wellbeing. Student Advocates work in collaboration with students and families in their group to develop an understanding of their learning through regular reflection and goal setting.

Individual support for students may also be provided by Year Level Learning Leaders and Whole School Learning Leaders. Learning Diversity Leaders ensure that appropriate resources and expertise are available to students who need additional support. Other supports are provided by the Learning Diversity and Wellbeing teams, Educational Psychologist, Occupational Therapist, Speech Therapist, Koorie Education Workers and Careers Practitioners.

CMCB is an inclusive community that is enriched through cultural diversity, empathy and understanding. All members are expected to be respectful and considerate, be of service to others and care for the Earth.

Social and Emotional Learning

The College offers a comprehensive Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) Curriculum, averaging 102 minutes a week at Years 7 to 9; and 60 minutes a week at St Mary’s. During this time, teachers conduct a wide range of activities designed to foster student wellbeing and engagement.

Berry Street Education Model whole-school approach

CMCB takes a whole-school approach to wellbeing using the Berry Street Education Model (BSEM). The BSEM approach is based on a Trauma-Informed Positive Education Program that provides strategies for learning and teaching that enable teachers to increase the engagement of learners and to successfully improve all students’ self-regulation, relationships, wellbeing, growth and academic achievement. The College provides opportunities throughout the school day for students to focus on physical and emotional regulation of stress responses, de-escalation in the classroom context and mindfulness.

School Wide Positive Behaviour Support

School Wide Positive Behaviour Support (SWPBS) is a framework used to develop positive, safe and supportive learning environments. The College has three clear behaviour expectations that apply at all times: Be Respectful, Be Responsible and Be Kind. These expectations are taught to all students by all staff, using common language to discuss behaviour.

SWPBS promotes:

  • increased respectful and positive behaviour
  • increased time focused on instruction
  • improved social-emotional wellbeing
  • positive and respectful relationships among students and staff
  • increased adoption of evidence-based instructional practices
  • a predictable learning environment with improved perceptions of safety and increased attendance.

Resilience, Rights & Respectful Relationships

In 2016, Respectful Relationships education became a core component of the Victorian Curriculum from Foundation to Year 12 and is being taught in all government, Catholic and many independent schools.

Respectful Relationships is about embedding a culture of respect and equality across our entire community, from our classrooms to staffrooms, sporting fields, and social events. The Respectful Relationships program supports schools to promote and model respect, positive attitudes and behaviours. It teaches our young people how to build healthy relationships, resilience and confidence.