The Teaching and Learning program at Penola Catholic College is informed by our Mission Statement which upholds the principle of a holistic and comprehensive education based on gospel values.

Our Curriculum reflects an understanding of our students at the various stages of their development and learning. We offer a rich and engaging curriculum through a large range of subject areas.

We take pride in ensuring our courses of study reflect current educational thinking and that they are aligned with the Victorian Curriculum F-10, Catholic Education and Federal Government initiatives and requirements.

Our teaching program is supported by the College Pastoral and Co-Curricular programs as well as a great variety of curriculum based excursions and in-school activities.

2024 Curriculum Handbook

At Years 7 and 8 the focus initially is on transition from the Primary school into the Secondary school setting.

In these years there is a strong focus on literacy and numeracy and students undertake a broad range of subject areas including the Visual and Performing Arts and Wood and Food Technology.

Interdisciplinary projects, rich tasks and the incorporation of ICT across the subject areas allow students to experience both breadth and depth in their studies.

In Years 9 and 10, our focus is on assisting students to develop greater independence of mind and interests.

Our curriculum, in particular the Interdisciplinary projects at these year levels, facilitate deeper connections between their learning and the world around them and allow them to explore how learning might be applied in the real world.

They experience learning in work and community settings as well as the classroom.

Students are also given opportunities to identify and develop preferred subject areas for their future learning.

Our ‘Core’ and ‘Elective’ programs assist them to design a pathway to the Senior Years.

The Mathematics and English classes branch out into three levels in order to best cater to the individual needs of our students:

  • Foundation
  • Mainstream and
  • Enrichment.

At Year 10, students may begin a VCE or VET program or apply to undertake our VCE Vocational Major (VM) program if they prefer the VM Pathway in the Senior Years.

In the Senior Years, Years 11 and 12, we offer our students over 40 VCE studies and 7 College provided VET programs.

Individual students with particular interests can also access a range of other VET programs and School Based New Apprenticeships in consultation with staff and in collaboration with TAFE.

We also offer VCE VM at Years 11 & 12 where students prepare for the world of work and initiate various creative, skill based projects.

In Years 11 & 12 at Penola, our students can design a VCE, VET or VCE VM program which suits their interest and talents and creates a pathway to tertiary study, apprenticeships or the world of work/employment.

In Year 11, students may undertake a Unit 3 & 4 study and in Year 12, eligible students may undertake a first year university study.


The Penola Catholic College community strives to provide a holistic education which meets the needs and develops the gifts of each student. Through a relevant and engaging curriculum, we aim to prepare our students to become the global citizens of the future. In an ever changing, technologically sophisticated world, we foster the ability to be critically aware and sensitive to local and global issues. We value the importance of creating appropriate learning spaces and facilities, and utilizing the latest technologies to enhance the learning environment and opportunities for our staff and students. We are a 1:1 Laptop school with all staff and students having their own Laptop/tablet device.

eLearning has changed our teaching and learning environments and as a college have made a commitment to ensuring that we implement the use of 21st Century technologies in the areas of; Leadership, teaching , learning, assessment and reporting, professional learning, learning spaces and learning communities. As a community we are striving to move towards becoming transformative in our eLearning practices.

Penola Catholic College aims to:

  • Promote learning that is relevant, contemporary, and collaborative.
  • Enrich learning by encouraging creativity and innovation in teaching methodologies and student participation
  • Foster excellence by providing an interactive and engaging learning environment
  • Develop independence in learning and critical thinking skills
  • Promote and educate in the ethical use of information and communication technologies
  • Improve accessibility to learning technologies for students and staff
  • Provide contemporary learning spaces that allow for flexible and innovative approaches to learning
  • Provide a safe online environment for all staff and students

The Australian Curriculum sets consistent national standards to improve learning outcomes for all young Australians.

It sets out, through content descriptions and achievement standards, what students should be taught and achieve, as they progress through school.

It is the base for future learning, growth and active participation in the Australian community.

ACARA (Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority) develops the Australian Curriculum through rigorous, consultative national processes.

Source: Australian Curriculum site