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Flinders principal commissioned by the Archbishop


Matthew Flinders Anglican College on the Sunshine Coast celebrated a significant moment in its history earlier this year with new principal Michelle Carroll commissioned by Archbishop Jeremy Greaves

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Matthew Flinders Anglican College on the Sunshine Coast celebrated a significant moment in its history earlier this year with new principal Michelle Carroll commissioned by Archbishop Jeremy Greaves during a service.

As the fifth principal since the College’s foundation in 1990, Ms Carroll said it was “an honour and privilege” to be part of the College’s history and vowed to lead with “imagination, courage and resolve”.

Ms Carroll joins the College as an outstanding leader with a passion for and academic interest in adolescent health and wellbeing. Prior to commencing at Flinders in January 2024, Michelle was the principal of leading all-girls school, St Catherine’s School in Melbourne, over 10 years.

Archbishop Jeremy — who was a Flinders parent for many years prior to relocating to Brisbane upon his installation — invited Ms Carroll to “lead the staff and students under your care, honouring their gifts and cherishing their contribution to the building up of the College and the fulfillment of its vision.”

Upon her commissioning, Ms Carroll said that she looks forward to co-writing a new chapter together with the College’s community.

“The induction of a principal is but a moment in time for any school,” Ms Carroll said.

“And for Matthew Flinders Anglican College: a fresh page, a new story, as yet unwritten and waiting to be filled with new aspirations, endeavours and memories.

“I have no doubt the chapter we write together will be remembered well.”

Ms Carroll encouraged students to care for others and pursue life-giving endeavours.

“My wish for you is to explore the essence of a fulfilling life. Cultivate lasting connections, extend a helping hand to others, actively engage in your passions,” she said.

“Embrace a life marked by meaningful relationships and purpose, and in pursuit of excellence.”

Year 12 student Ainslie Bond presented a gift on behalf of the Senior School students, a framed print of the College’s Reconciliation artwork, created by artist and Old Flinderian David Williams.

Ainslie then welcomed Ms Carroll as the College’s new Principal.

“The four symbols displayed on this framed print show our four College values — compassion, courage, integrity and respect — are not just four words for us to memorise,” Ainslie said.

“Rather, they are attitudes and habits we aim to hone so that they become integral to all we are and do.

“As the spiritual leader of our school, we pray that you will guide us all to grow in embodying each one of them.”

Student and principal shaking hands on a stage

Flinders Year 12 student Ainslie Bond welcomed new principal Michelle Carroll, presenting her with a gift on behalf of the Senior School students, at Ms Carroll’s commissioning on 30 January 2024

Ms Carroll takes the reins from retired College principal Stuart Meade, who led with distinction over seven years until December, 2023.

Flinders’ heart-warming commissioning service was attended by staff and students from Years 3 to 12, as well as representatives from the Flinders Early Learning Centre (FELC).

Special guests included members of the College Boards and parent community, Member for Buderim Brent Mickelberg MP and Rector of The Parish of Maroochydore The Rev’d Tania Eichler, along with colleagues, education industry leaders, and principals and retired principals from schools across the Sunshine Coast, Brisbane and Toowoomba.

Ms Carroll was officially presented by the College Board Chair Peta Grenfell and College Chaplain The Rev’d Kathrin Koning to be commissioned by the Archbishop.

The service included prayers, readings and the presentation of symbolic gifts to guide and inspire Ms Carroll from staff and students, including College Captains, Primary School Captains and Leaders, and representatives from the College Board, FELC, the Old Flinderians’ Association and Flinders Parents and Friends.

Special guests included friends and mentors who have supported Ms Carroll on her career journey, including Flo Kearney, Principal of Women’s College, University of Queensland; Ros Curtis, Principal of St Margaret’s Anglican Girls School and Dr Amanda Bell, retired principal of Brisbane Girls Grammar School.

The College’s talented Wind Symphony, conducted by John Thomas, and Chamber Voices, conducted by Sally McHugh, performed moving songs to celebrate the special event in the College’s history.

Following the service, Ms Carroll, staff and guests gathered for a morning tea in the new state-of-the-art Infinity Centre, opened as part of the Flinders Masterplan.

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