A very thorough process was undertaken to select the next Principal of the College.


Mercedes College Appoints New Principal

Following the announcement in February this year of the retirement of Mr Peter Daw, Principal of Mercedes College for the last 15 years, a very thorough process was undertaken to select the next Principal of the College.

I am now very pleased to announce the appointment of Mr Andrew Balkwill as the next Principal of Mercedes College. This appointment comes with the approval of Fr Philip Marshall, Administrator Delegate, Archdiocese of Adelaide, and in consultation with Dr Neil McGoran, Director of Catholic Education SA. This appointment also comes with the support of the Mercedes College Council. Andrew will take up his new role from the beginning of 2020.

Andrew is married to Sarah, and has two children, Jack and Lily-Mae, who are both Catholic secondary school students.

Andrew comes with a very impressive record within Catholic education. He has been Principal of Thomas More College at Salisbury for the last 5 years, and prior to that, he was Principal of Sacred Heart College Middle School at Mitchell Park. From May this year, until the end of the year, he has been appointed to the position of Principal Consultant at the Catholic Education Office. In this role, Andrew will mentor and support a number of principals in matters such as leading learning, dealing with critical incidents, and strategic planning. 

Andrew is a person of deep faith, is strongly committed to the Mercy ethos and values highly the Mercy Keys, which he sees as being embedded in the daily life of the College. He believes strongly in the partnership schools have with families. He comes to Mercedes with an enthusiastic commitment to the International Baccalaureate (IB), as well as to the South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE). He believes passionately in a successful pathway for every student. I know that Andrew is very much looking forward to getting to know the students, staff and families of Mercedes, and is delighted to be appointed to lead a Reception to Year 12 school. I know that you will look forward to meeting and getting to know Andrew when he takes up his appointment. 

I am also pleased to inform you that I have appointed Mr Paul Wadsworth as Interim Principal for Terms 3 and 4 this year. On your behalf, I wish Paul well as he takes on this acting position. I know that the College will be in very safe hands during Paul’s time as Interim Principal. 

I take this opportunity to thank all members of the selection panel for their work, and in particular Chair of the Panel, Ms Jane Swift, who led the selection process with wisdom and brought to the deliberations a deep understanding of the needs and culture of our College. 

Finally, on your behalf, I wish Peter every blessing as he moves into retirement. I will have further occasions on which to express my gratitude to Peter, on behalf of us all, but at this point I wish to register my profound thanks for his excellent leadership of Mercedes College over the last 15 years.

Yours sincerely 

Louise Mathwin
Chair, Mercedes College Council