Robyn Bessell is the Director of Middle Years at Mount Carmel College; a Catholic K-10 girls’ college on the magnificent Derwent River in Hobart, Tasmania. She has a Master of Education degree and a wide and varied range of subject teaching experiences including VET courses (Hospitality III and Children’s Services III) and pre-tertiary English, as well as experience in teaching Religion, English, Drama, History, SOSE and Literacy at co-educational and girls’ schools Years 7-12. Robyn is a ‘late starter’ in teaching, taking her first class at 40 years of age.
Her current position incorporates pastoral care, wellbeing and student engagement. Four years ago, the college community decided on a pro-active approach to disengagement, bullying and the Year 8 girls’ lack of resilience by attempting a meta-analysis of programs and wellbeing education movements to focus on a what would be best for our girls. STRIVE was born. The acronym represents key thematic focus areas for the year; Spirituality, Teamwork, Resilience, Independence, Volunteering, and Empowerment. The intensive program is designed with Positive Education ideals and has an interdisciplinary framework within which learning opportunities occur.