Cathy Poyser, the school’s Deputy Principal always aspired to be a Doctor, however a six month stay in hospital during Year 11 changed all of that.
“Each weekend, my school principal would visit to catch me up on my mathematics and many other teachers and students visited regularly. This was a real turning point for me,” says Cathy.
Thanks to these special visitors from Cathy’s school, over the course of her six month hospital stay, Cathy discovered the power of feeling connected, supported and being part of a caring community.
“Up until then, I had always aspired to be a Doctor, but this time in hospital showed me how important the role of the teacher was in the lives of young people. The rapport and relationship developed with students and their families is so special and can have the greatest nurturing effect,” she says.
Cathy who joined CGGS in 1999 as a part time mathematics teacher, felt at home almost instantly. Over the course of the past 20 years, she has held various roles of responsibility including Form Teacher, Year Level Coordinator and Head of Pastoral Care.
In 2016, she was promoted to the position of Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School, a role that is primarily responsible for student wellbeing – a role so perfectly suited to her. Cathy leads a team of staff including the Deputy Heads of Senior School, Year Level Coordinators, Form Teachers, Counsellors and Nurses to ensure that as a school, we are caring for our students as best we can and supporting each girl in every endeavour.
“I really don’t consider this to be a job, but rather the most rewarding and meaningful opportunity to be a formative part in the development of the young women of the future. What better privilege could there be?”
For two decades, Cathy has been developing strong relationships with students and their families and there isn’t one current or past student from her time at CGGS who she can’t name. She attends absolutely every school event throughout the year, including sports carnivals, musical productions, art shows and public speaking competitions and, she strongly encourages parents to do
“The time your children have at school is like no other. We all recall with great pride and love the first time our child walks or talks and I would like to think the same feeling applies to their schooling. You only have a small window of opportunity to be involved in the education of your children. These events are as important to them as those early milestones were to you.”
“The best way to show you are interested in your daughter’s education from an academic and wellbeing perspective is to be a part of it,” she confirms.
After 20 years at CGGS, there is no slowing Cathy down. She recently completed a Professional Certificate in Adolescent Counselling through Monash University and she is looking forward to reconnecting with many members of the CGGS community at the school’s Centenary celebrations in 2020.
“CGGS is like no other school. We have excellent facilities, exceptional teachers, students who work hard on all endeavours and supportive parents. These parameters will always remain central to the CGGS community. To me it truly is special and I wake up each morning excited about the day in this community.”