Our Lady of Mercy Catholic College Burraneer

As a year 10 student at Our Lady of Mercy Catholic College Burraneer, Sydney, Bella observed the division between students and teachers in classes, which inhibited her educational experience and that of her peers. She knew that in order to enrich her school community, all staff and pupils had to develop bonds of trust, friendship, and collective pursuit of educational goals. That’s how she developed the idea for Bond Day - a program run amongst year groups to enhance connections between students and staff at the start of the academic year. Participating in bonding activities, enabling them to get to know each other better before diving into academics, would enable the students and teachers to establish trust, commitment, and enthusiasm in classes. Importantly, these bonds of trust would also facilitate communication ‘across the aisle’ - meaning students would feel more confident trusting in their teachers if they are encountering academic or personal troubles. This project is particularly pertinent and important for Bella - as not only is she a student seeking to enhance her learning - but she also one day hopes to be a teacher herself. ‘My goal with this project is to create bonds between both teachers and students alike, allowing them to respect one another and benefit the students’ learning,’ she says of her project.

Isabella attended our Secondary Youth Leadership Conference and participated in the LeaderUp post event program.

Youth Leadership Academy Australia’s very first post-event LeaderUp program saw some of Australia’s brightest young leaders come together to create an innovative solution to a problem they observed in their community. Throughout the ten-week program, students planned, organised, and proposed their projects to their schools, launching themselves into the process to create genuine, grassroots change.