July 2019 Update

5 July 2019

Media contact:

Vincent Sully: 0407 310 115

John and Christie Angheli: 0412 799 348

A New, Classically Based Primary School
Is In the Works To Be Opened In Linton In 2020

An application for independent school registration has been lodged with the Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority (VRQA), to open a new primary school, ‘Our Lady of Fatima Classical School’, in Cumberland Street, Linton.

Golden Plains Shire Council has issued a Notice of Decision To Grant a Planning Permit. The Notice of Decision lists the conditions that Council intends to apply to the permit. Subject to VRQA approval, OLFCS will commence operation in 2020.

“Our Lady of Fatima Classical School will commence in 2020 and already has 14 students pre-enrolled. We have the capacity to teach up to 50 students on the existing premises and expect to fill these positions by 2024”, said School Board Chair, Vincent Sully.

“Over the long term”, Mr Sully says, “we aim to secure a site at Smythesdale, so we can grow the school to P-10 size, with VCE being offered by 2030”. 

The OLFCS’ Curriculum Framework will be based upon the Australian Curriculum presented through The Trivium model of Classical Education, which teaches children to seek truth, appreciate beauty, and work towards a more just and loving society.  

Classical Education originated in the late 16th century and is focussed on studying the seven Liberal Arts and Four Sciences. The Trivium encompasses the first three Liberal Arts of grammar, logic and rhetoric. The Trivium is complimented by The Quadrivium, which comprises the remaining Liberal Arts and Four Sciences.

“Our vision is to equip children and young people with a spirit of inquiry, nurturing their imagination, reason and thinking skills. On the backbone of strong literacy and numeracy, The Trivium model provides a holistic approach that invites the students to lead a virtuous life in truth, goodness and beauty”, said Mr Sully. 

Of critical importance for OLFCS is to build a strong community that will support families with their economic needs, as well as the mental, emotional and spiritual challenges that families face as raising children.

“The school has much to offer a family like us,” said Simone Casanova, who has children who will commence with the school in 2020.  “Programs such as the Catechesis of The Good Shepherd willreinforce what we teach at home, which respects our role as the first educators of our children. The opportunity for the children to learn skills in sacred music is really attractive as well”.

With population and house prices on the rise in Melbourne a move to regional Victoria is also an enticing option for parents of three, Andy and Angela Devereux.

“While we have enjoyed our time living in Melbourne, a provincial move with more affordable housing and a new independent school reflecting our values is something to really consider”, Mr Devereux remarked.

The Devereuxs have both lived overseas and seen first hand the results of Classical Education in students and their contribution to family life and the life of the Church and society as a whole.

OLFCS is seeking registration from the VRQA as an independent school, however it will work collaboratively with all other relevant groups and authorities.

“Although our proposed school does not fall under the jurisdiction of the Catholic Education Office (CEO), a strong spirit of co-operation exists between our school, Bishop Paul Bird CSsR and the Ballarat CEO, for which we are very grateful”, said OLFCS Secretary, Damian Meade.

Costs to establish the school are anticipated to total approximately $165,000, with the main expenses being the renovation of the Cumberland Street property, streetscaping and the purchase of a portable toilet block. OLFCS has raised $20,000 to date to cover these costs and the school is currently in negotiations for a further $50,000 no interest loan. OLFCS aims to raise a further $95,000 by 30 November 2019.

“We have made a very promising start towards our fundraising needs”, said OLFCS Secretary Damian Meade. “We continue to seek donations and would welcome further conversations about no interest loans”, Mr Meade said.

Anyone who would like to support fundraising efforts through donations or no interest loans is welcome to contact Damian Meade on 0490 386 908 or at admin@frassatiballarat.net.au or to pursue this online at http://frassatiballarat.net.au/donate