|22 May 2023|
As one of Sydney’s leading independent Catholic girls’ schools, Loreto Normanhurst has established a 125-year legacy of providing a holistic and nurturing boarding education for girls from Sydney, rural NSW and beyond.
Loreto Normanhurst’s flourishing boarding community has experienced a growing number of Sydney-based families enquiring and pursuing a boarding education for their daughters, including Sydney-based parent Kath Walton and daughter, Sabine Walton, currently a Year 10 boarder at the school.
Director of Boarding at Loreto Normanhurst, Mrs Kate Kovacs, highlights interest in the Loreto Normanhurst boarding program has grown significantly among families within the Greater Sydney region over the past six years. In 2018, the school introduced a fully flexible boarding model to allow families to choose the boarding arrangement that best fits their needs, making it easier for families to access the Loreto Normanhurst award-winning model of education.
"We have certainly observed a surge in enrolment enquires for our boarding program from Sydney-based families. More than just a program, our boarding school is often referred to as the heart of Loreto Normanhurst. Undoubtedly, it is this sense of community, the lifelong friendships formed, and the academic support and extra-curricular opportunities offered, that attract Sydney families to consider city boarding,” said Mrs Kovacs.
In celebration of National Boarding Week (16th - 22nd May), Loreto Normanhurst is proud to showcase the many advantages of city boarding. For city boarding parent, Kath Walton the convenience, access to world-class education and a supportive community is what makes boarding a rewarding choice for her daughter, Sabine.
"We have always loved Loreto Normanhurst as a school, however the daily commute from our home would have been quite long for Sabine. This made boarding an appealing choice for us as a family and ensured Sabine would have equal opportunity to her brothers who also boarded at other schools,” said Kath Walton.
She continues, “with no commute to school, Sabine has more time to study, do sport, and have fun. Her boarder friends give her help and advice as they grow into young women of the world. Her boarding education has also made her self-reliant and resilient, and she has become independent quickly.”
The benefits of city boarding extend far beyond the convenience of a shorter commute time, with Kath recognising the role of the close-knit Loreto Normanhurst boarding community in holistically supporting student growth.
“With the guiding hand of the fantastic Loreto Normanhurst boarding staff, the girls are encouraged to navigate social aspects of school and solve problems on their own. Sabine has learnt a lot from her boarding friends, particularly her friends from the country. Through boarding she has grown an understanding of what it is like to be a farmer and going through drought and floods and how these times affect families in the bush. This grounding contextual experience and country connection are one of the blessings of Loreto Normanhurst boarding.”
Echoing her mother’s reflection on boarding, Sabine expresses how boarding at Loreto Normanhurst has amplified opportunities for participation in extra-curricular activities, access to study support and building positive relationships with peers.
“The best thing about being a boarder is the community, and that every girl brings different talents and skills to the Loreto Normanhurst Boarding School. Living as a boarder has also provided me with greater accessibility and ease in participating in extra-curricular activities. This has allowed me to take advantage of a wider range of opportunities, such as joining the boarder choir, engaging in community service projects, and participating in various recreational pursuits. I believe my boarding enrolment has benefited my schooling experience across all aspects.”
Looking to the future, Mrs Kovacs believes city boarding will continue to increase in popularity amongst busy families who, like the Waltons, value access to a holistic model of academic and extra-curricular opportunities and the forming of lasting friendships and connections with peers from diverse backgrounds.
“I believe more parents are now considering their options when it comes to their daughter’s education and what this looks like in 2023 and beyond. At Loreto Normanhurst, our approach to boarding is inherently holistic to support the social, emotional, and academic growth of students. It is the diversity of our boarding community, rich with experiences and stories, that fosters a grounded and authentic culture throughout the whole school,” said Ms Kovacs.
Unveiled as part of the schools 30 Year Master Plan, Loreto Normanhurst will open a new state-of-the-art Boarding School in 2025. Designed to meet the needs of boarding students for the next 125 years, the purpose-built Boarding School will deliver increased student accommodation, flexible communal spaces and reflect the school’s vision to create a modern, ecologically sustainable home for all boarding students.
Further information on the Loreto Normanhurst Boarding Program can be accessed here.
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