Catholic Education South Australia
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30 Mar 2021
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Name announced for new Catholic Special Assistance School

The proposed new Catholic Special Assistance School in the northern suburbs of Adelaide has been named. 

The fee-free, co-educational learning village for young people aged 17 to 24 will be known as Compass Catholic Community.

Opening at Davoren Park in January 2022, Compass Catholic Community will work with young people in the Playford area to engage with new opportunities for learning, work and community participation to support their wellbeing, needs and aspirations.

Located within the Northern Adelaide Education and Community Services Village (The Village), it is estimated that 60 students will be enrolled during the first year of operation in 2022. This number is expected to grow to 120 students by 2025.

Archbishop Patrick O’Regan said the name of the school has been chosen very intentionally.

“A compass implies a starting point, used from where you are, to look forward to where you want to go. In this community the direction will be oriented to the person of Jesus and each person within the community will experience the compassion, community, joy and hope that is part of an excellent Catholic community,” Archbishop O’Regan said.   

Dr Neil McGoran, Director Catholic Education South Australia said the school will provide young people in the Playford community with the opportunity to continue or re-enter schooling.

“We are providing a new choice for young people to re-engage with learning, a choice they should have as a fully flourishing young person. We believe in the potential of all young people to become inspired to learn, strive for excellence and achieve positive outcomes for themselves, their families and the community,” Dr McGoran said.   

The inaugural Head of Village, Ms Kelly Bunyon, is leading the work to establish the school ahead of its opening in January 2022.

“Compass Catholic Community will work to increase student agency, so young people know they can, and learn how to, make an investment in achieving their goals towards living a life that is meaningful to them.

“We will adopt teaching and learning approaches that focus on student interest and meaning, to walk alongside them as they grow their capabilities,” said Kelly.

The school motto is Way. Truth. Life. The scriptural passage I am the way the truth the life (John 14:6) will shape and guide all aspects of the Compass Catholic Community for staff and young people.

Compass will be co-located at The Village with the Edmund Rice Flexi School, operated by Edmund Rice Education Australia (EREA) that provides an education and wellbeing service for young people aged 12 to 17. The venture will expand on their existing service that already engages approximately 70 young people.

Compass is seeking to build relationships with young people in the local area, as well as partnerships with other educational, non-government organisations and support services who can refer young people to the Special Assistance School ahead of its opening in 2022.

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