Australia

St Catherine’s appoints ‘active Christian’ principal amid same-sex marriage row


St Catherine’s, the college on the centre of a controversial push by the Sydney Anglican Diocese to drive new principals to avow their opposition to same-sex marriage, has introduced a former principal out of retirement to be its interim principal for 2 years.

The faculty’s board has appointed Judith Poole, who went into semi-retirement after departing as headmistress of Abbotsleigh in 2016, to steer the college in 2023 and 2024 after the current head, Julie Townsend, departs on the finish of the 12 months.

The faculty’s dad and mom have been combating an edict from the church’s synod that new heads signal an announcement of religion that they imagine marriage is between a person and a lady. St Catherine’s is in Waverley, which voted overwhelmingly for same-sex marriage within the 2017 postal vote.

St Catherine’s has introduced a brand new interim principal.Credit:Janie Barrett

In a letter to the college neighborhood on Tuesday, the council chair Danusia Cameron stated Poole was “a remarkable educator and visionary leader”. The letter stated Poole was an lively Christian. Abbotsleigh can be an Anglican diocese-run faculty.

It didn’t clarify why the council selected an interim relatively than a everlasting candidate and didn’t say whether or not she was required to signal the brand new assertion of religion.

Poole stated she needed to teach college students in a “caring, positive and aspirational environment”. “Fundamental to my leadership is my commitment to the pastoral care of each student, the professional development of every member of staff and the wellbeing of the entire school community,” she stated.

Parents at St Catherine’s have been urging the school council and the Sydney Diocese to drop the wedding clause within the new principal’s contract. A survey of greater than 80 per cent of St Catherine’s dad and mom discovered 4 in 5 of them have been against the assertion.

They say the neighborhood was not requested in regards to the assertion and has no say within the number of a principal, regardless of paying as much as $37,000 a 12 months in charges.

The dad and mom wrote to Anglican Archbishop Kanishka Raffel on June 9 to formally define their objections, however haven’t obtained a response. Those fascinated by taking their daughters out of the college desire a speedy decision.



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