News Blog

Welcome Margaret Holles Principal of St Philip Neri Catholic Primary School.

January 29, 2024

Margaret has spent over 16 years in educational leadership working in the Sydney Diocese with the last 12 years being at St Vincent’s Ashfield and OLMC Waterloo. Previously, she worked in the Canberra Goulburn and Wilcannia Forbes Dioceses. As well as an educational leader and classroom practitioner, Margaret spent time as a literary consultant which continues to be her passion as an educator. She now brings all this experience to the community of St Philip Neri Catholic Primary School, Northbridge.

What inspired your path into education?

I embarked on the path of education having been inspired by my mother, who was a teacher, and other teachers I was fortunate enough to have been taught by. I have also been extremely blessed to have worked with some visionary leaders who helped define my mission as an educational leader to provide every child with quality education in a safe and nurturing environment. I was consistently drawn to the transformative nature of education and the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of students, making a meaningful difference in the world.

How do you engage parents/carers, students and staff?

As an educational leader, I strive to engage parents, carers and students through open communication and transparency. I provide a range of opportunities for formal and informal feedback, making sure that communication serves a purpose and creates a collaborative and supportive educational environment, serving students who are at the heart of our work.

How does your faith impact your leadership style?

My faith deeply influences my leadership style as I’m drawn to the mission of Jesus Christ and fostering an environment where students can know Christ in their lives. I strive to embody gospel values in my leadership at all times with compassion, integrity and a commitment to service. I hold the words from Micah 6:8 close to my heart: ‘To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God’.

If we asked your closest friends, how would they describe you as a person?

When I asked my friends this question, they said they would describe me as loyal, committed, hard-working, passionate, funny, caring, non-judgemental and authentic.

What do you hope to achieve as Principal at your school?

As Principal, my foremost goal is to create an inclusive and nurturing educational environment where every student feels valued and inspired to excel. I aspire to cultivate a culture of academic excellence, fostering a passion for learning with a growth mindset to nurture learning beyond the classroom. Through collaborative efforts with teachers, staff, parents and carers, I aim to implement research-informed and evidence-based teaching practices that address the diverse needs of students. Wellbeing will be a priority for both students and staff, establishing a strong support system for both. By fostering open communication and collaboration, I intend to create a positive school culture that encourages creativity, critical thinking and a sense of community. Ultimately, my goal is to build on the great work that has already taken place to lead a school where students thrive academically and personally, grounded in their faith and equipped with the skills and values necessary for success in an ever-changing world.

What will you hope to leave as your legacy in education leadership?

My hope is to leave emerging educational leaders who have been inspired in some way in their journey and teachers who have a joy for teaching and know how to make a difference in their practice. I also hope that the students will be autonomous learners, curious thinkers and have a love of learning.