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Diocese of Toowoomba Catholic Schools


Students from St Mary's College, Mary MacKillop Catholic College, St Saviour's College and St Joseph's College.

There are many reasons why students succeed in our schools but the most important of these is our staff. After the family the teacher is the most influential person in the lives of students whilst they are at school. Our teachers make a difference every day, educating and inspiring our young students.

World Teachers' Day is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate and thank our teachers for their important role in our communities and for the positive impact they have on the lives of students.

Some of our teachers have taken the time to share a short story about their teaching careers.

I find it difficult to choose a favourite teacher because I was blessed to be educated by engaging, dedicated and passionate teachers from my first day of Preschool to my final day of Year 12. They taught me some of my favourite subjects, including Maths and Science, but more importantly to be persistent, resilient, curious and much more. I hope that I have been able to pass on these gifts to the learners I have learned alongside for the past two decades. The best part of choosing to become a teacher is that we are paid to learn new things every single day and the best teachers I have are the children in my classes. 
Amanda Thompson | Teacher | St Joseph’s School, Stanthorpe

As a child when asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, I always responded in one of two ways – a nun, or a bus driver. Moving to secondary school; however, I became more attuned to my passion and overwhelming desire to work with children and so chose to pursue a career in education. The beauty of the teaching profession is, that it is a powerful one. Each day you have the power to make a positive impact in the life of a child. And every time you change just one person’s world, in essence you begin a butterfly effect with the potential to improve lives for generations to come. This is true power.
Kerri-Ann Manthey | Middle Leader | Holy Name Primary School, Toowoomba

Being a teacher is a privilege. It provides opportunity to shape the future of our society by having an impact on the next generation. Teachers nurture the development of knowledge, skills and dispositions that enable our students to be positive, creative contributors to the world. It’s a dynamic profession in which every day is different and there are always new challenges, however knowing that you have made a difference to a young person’s life is a total gift.
Angela Martlew | Deputy Principal | Mater Dei Primary School, Toowoomba

After I graduated from high school, I began my Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies (CBTS) whilst working as an assistant educator at a day care centre and also teaching a pre-school dance class. There were certain things about my work and studies that really resonated with me. I loved being a part of the children’s learning journey, motivating them to achieve their goals. I was captivated by each individual child’s strengths, interests and learning styles; the ways they were intrinsically motivated to learn the knowledge and skills that appealed to their desire to learn and achieve. I experienced some things in the ballet world that just didn’t sit right with me as a teacher, but I saw opportunities in the teaching world for me to inspire and motivate children to reach their full potential as individuals. On completing my CBTS, I promptly enrolled in the Bachelor of Learning Management. I focused on Early Childhood because I loved the possibilities in early childhood education, for children to explore, create and learn as their instincts guided them. Whilst my studies and practical experience mostly prepared me for primary teaching, I was eager to follow my love of early learning. My first role as a kindergarten teacher was an eye opener to a whole new world, that was fun, heartwarming, exciting and overwhelming all at once. Children are naturally wired to learn and still, every day I watch in awe as they make discoveries and master new skills in an environment rich with interactions and experiences.
Teagan Busiko | Director: St John’s Kindergarten, Roma

Starting my formal education in a small one teacher school with all the classes together in the one room made me realise the importance of having a teacher that can relate to children in all aspects of their lives.  I have had many teachers that have made an impact on my life journey, and this has inspired me to be on that journey for others. I knew early in my career that I wanted to be teacher that inspired young children to achieve their goals, be independent and work with others to find their passion in life.  If I can be ‘just one cog in a child’s wheel of life’ I hope that it will be positive, inspirational, and caring.
Marie Sullivan | Director | St Mary’s Kindergarten, Warwick

I came home on my first day of Grade 1 and told my parents I wanted to be a teacher, just like Mrs Kimmins, when I grow up. Fast forward a few decades and I am in the 12th year of a wonderful career, most of which has been spent working for Toowoomba Catholic Schools, except for a two-year break to enjoy a working holiday in the UK. I feel very blessed to currently be appointed as the APRE at St Thomas More’s in Toowoomba. The thing I love most about my job is that there is always the opportunity to grow and learn.
Kristin Byrne | Assistant Principal Religious Education | St Thomas More’s Primary School, Toowoomba

Becoming a teacher means I have the opportunity to give back what so many teachers have given me, a chance and the opportunity to learn through my strengths and interests. Growing up through the school system with ADD and Dyslexia was difficult. I will always remember the teachers who took extra care, time and support, allowing me to strive to succeed across my schooling. As an Early Childhood teacher, I can start each child's individual journey of education, taking account of their many cultures and differences to build and instil lifelong skills and aim for early intervention, allowing each child the chance to succeed; and to have a sense of emotional wellbeing and the ability to own their individuality in the current world that is more complex than what I knew growing up.
Christel Anderson | Teacher | St John’s Kindergarten, Roma

We also asked some of our students if they had a teacher that they found inspiring.

All through my primary years I’ve learnt one thing. To be who I truly want to be, to lead by example and not to become a boss but a leader, not a sheep but a shepherd. To be a light in the darkness and to be the friend everyone can lean on. We can all make mistakes but it’s how we overcome. I would like to thank my Year 6 teachers, Miss Cav and Mr Philp.  
Lusi Manibe | Year 6 | Mater Dei Primary School, Toowoomba

I think Mrs Holzeimer is the definition of inspire. She has had a big influence on me ever since I started school. Just recently, she gave me and many of my classmates the opportunity to be cast in a musical. I have found a big passion for acting and watching her support us inspires me to do my best. Thank you for everything Mrs H.
Ella Seeto | Year 6 | Mater Dei Primary School, Toowoomba

When I came to Holy Name the teachers became a huge part of my life. They helped me with learning and language. They were patient, kind and caring. Teachers encourage us to be the best we can be, and they help us through tricky times. We are lucky to have amazing teachers at Holy Name.
Leen Zahlouz | Year 6 | Holy Name Primary School, Toowoomba

Ms Roberts has inspired me to be kind and listen carefully when others are talking. Mrs Jenny encouraged me to keep trying when I find things difficult.
Eva | Year 3 | St Thomas More’s Primary School, Toowoomba

Ms McVeigh encouraged me to get out of my comfort zone. She inspires me to be brave. Miss Byrne inspires us all by giving us a chance to be involved in different ways at school in lots of different groups.
Grace | Year 4 | St Thomas More’s Primary School, Toowoomba

We love how much effort and time teachers put in to help us learn and grow. Teachers always make us feel like we are in a safe and calm environment where we are welcome to share and dialogue. Most importantly teachers make us feel like we BELONG!
Zoe and Ariane | Year 6 | Holy Name Primary School, Toowoomba

Tomorrow some of our schools will start the day with a special breakfast for teachers, others will celebrate with morning tea.  Whatever the activity, we hope that our teachers feel appreciated for all the great work they do.