Pastoral Care

A fundamental belief for Catholic schools is that in Jesus is seen God's image and likeness in its human expression, and that Jesus' values and teachings show all people 'the way, the truth and the life' (John 14:6).  In accordance with this belief, values to be promoted within a Catholic school's understanding and practice of pastoral care include love, respect, compassion, tolerance, forgiveness, repentance, reconciliation and justice. 

Mercedes College has a vision that calls us to create a caring community where students and staff get to know each other in a mutually respectful and nurturing environment.

Pastoral Care at Mercedes College is centred on God, embracing the spirit of Catherine McAuley.  Our Pastoral Care is concerned with maximising learning and growth, while developing the students' values, attitudes, knowledge, skills and practices.  Our students are encouraged to develop a positive self-image reflecting self-awareness, courage and resilience, as well as caring for others, the community and the environment.  Young Mercedes women have a love for life, a belief in themselves, and confidence in their abilities.  The life of every human person is seen to have a God given value and meaning which is enhanced in the Mercedes community where the atmosphere is permeated with the Gospel spirit of freedom and love.

At Mercedes, programs, structures and specialist personnel ensure that specific needs are met in a systematic fashion.


  • Foundational to the nature of pastoral care is the belief that each person is created in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:27), with the inherent dignity that this implies, and all are created as social beings, with the mutual rights, obligations and needs that this implies.
  • Pastoral Care at the College affirms and gives expression to the belief that 'the person of each individual human being, in his or her material and spiritual needs, is at the heart of Christ's teaching: this is why the promotion of the human person is the goal of pastoral care'.
  • To promote tolerance, the acceptance of difference and a culture of cooperation, empathy and respect.
  • Parents are the first educators of their children and the College assists parents in their Catholic education.  The College also recognises the special pastoral circumstances of its own community, including families, and utilises its resources, personnel and programs to meet these needs.

All members of the Mercedes College community have pastoral responsibilities. The College has a specific structure in place to ensure the above principles are actioned.  Within this structure teachers have specific responsibilities.

Pastoral Council 2017  

Mrs Kerrie Fraser
Mr Christoper Cole (Chair)
Mrs Liana Strutt
Mrs Susan Macdonald
Mr Liam Smith
Mrs Sherrin Adams
Mrs Bernadette Dell
Mrs Alicia Sharpe  
Miss Lara Fresson
Mrs Sarika Ottenhof
Mrs Deanna Scott
Mrs Melanie Knight
Ms Tanya Kadak

Deputy Principal Student Life
Deputy Principal Academic Services
Deputy Principal Faith & Mission
Head of Year 12
Head of Year 11
Head of Year 10
Head of Year 9
Head of Year 8
Head of Year 7

Mercedes College has a horizontal structure with each year group divided into homerooms.
In 2017 Year 7 to 10 have six homerooms each, and Year 11 and 12 have seven homerooms.

Homeroom Teacher

  • Homeroom Teachers are the primary carer of students in their homeroom groups and will be the most important people in the school life of the student. The Homeroom Teachers will also be the major point of contact for parents. 
  • Each Homeroom Teacher works closely as a member of the year group team to develop the pastoral care program and assist with year-based activities.  In this role the Year Coordinator and Executive member responsible for the year group assist and support the Homeroom Teacher.  The Homeroom Teacher has four areas of responsibility – theological, educational, pastoral and managerial.

Head of Year
The Head of Year has a key leadership role in working with the year team in the care of the students and assists and supports the Homeroom Teacher in their role.  The Head of Year works with the year team to develop the pastoral care program and year-based activities.  The Head of Year is a member of the Pastoral Council and, with other members of the Council, fosters the consistent application of College standards.  The Head of Year liaises with the Deputy Principal responsible for the year group and as required, and meets with the Principal to discuss issues pertinent to the staff and students in the year group.  The Head of Year is responsible for the theological, pastoral, educational and managerial areas in her/his role.

Executive Members
The Executive members with specific responsibilities for Pastoral Care include the Deputy Principal Student Life with the support of the Deputy Principal Academic Services and Deputy Principal Faith and Mission as needed.   In 2017 they are:
Deputy Principal Student Life (Mr Chris Cole) 
Deputy Principal Academic Services (Mrs Liana Strutt)
Deputy Principal Faith and Mission (Mrs Susan Macdonald)

Students and parents have the services of three registered Psychologists available to them, Mrs Deanna Scott, Mrs Melanie Knight (P/T) and Ms Tanya Kadak (P/T) who are experienced in adolescent mental health.  They provide confidential counselling and assistance with personal and school difficulties.  For more information please see our Psychologist information.

For more information on Pastoral Care please go to the Pastoral Care Policy.





Tuesday, 5 September





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