New Aquinas College headmaster David McFadden the ‘head of the family’

New Aquinas College headmaster David McFadden the ‘head of the family’

DAVID McFadden believes the role of a headmaster is a bit like being the head of a family.

The 15th headmaster of Aquinas College since it moved to its current location in Salter Point in 1938, has rejoined the school after teaching there for 13 years.

The Belfast-born and London-raised educator taught at the school from 1988 to 2001 and has rejoined as headmaster this year after a period of teaching in England.

“The boys and the community here is great , it drew me back,” he said.

“I’m coming back and walking into a great challenge as the headmaster but because my daughters live in Perth, I wanted to come here.”

Mr McFadden said every day was different as the headmaster of the school.

“You have assemblies, meeting old boys, reviewing academic results, meeting parents and staff,” he said.

“I want to maintain what’s good about the school but I also want to establish a strategic plan by talking to parents, pupils and everyone else to decide where we go from here.”

Mr McFadden moved to Australia after seeing an advertisement for a teaching job and jumped at the opportunity.

“I went to country Victoria first to teach at Nagle College in Bairnsdale; I remember leaving London when it was snowing and then arriving in Australia and it was 40C,” he said.

“I’ve spent time at Christian Brothers College in Fremantle as headmaster and then I went back to London to teach at the London Oratory School.

“The education system between the two schools is similar but in Australia it’s more about what the students attain rather than their starting point.

“If you lined up all the Year 12 students, some would be further (than) others on the running track.”