Principal Bec O’Connor brings ‘country wisdom’ to her new role at St Peter Chanel The Gap


​©Brisbane Catholic Educaiton, St Peter Chanel Primary School, The Gap (​2023).

What does it take for a young Principal to lead an inner-city school successfully?  

Principal Bec O'Connor suggests “a country change” as the cornerstone for success. 

After steering one of Brisbane Catholic Education's (BCE) most regional schools for six years in a variety of leadership roles, Bec a former BCE student turned Principal, now embarks on her next chapter at St Peter Chanel Primary School The Gap. 

"My transformative journey at the forefront of St Joseph’s Primary School Gayndah has sculpted my preparedness for any challenge," Bec reflects, acknowledging the profound impact of her experience working as a Principal in a rural community. 

“There’s something to be learned from the warmth and closeness of country towns, an invaluable lesson in community that I carry forward into my new role at The Gap. 

“Although Brisbane is vastly different to Gayndah, at the end of the day my mission will be the same, to nurture not only the intellect but also the spirit of every one of my students at my new school.” 

Reflecting on her journey to school leadership, Bec says she is a product of a Brisbane Catholic Education, attending 12 years of school at St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School and St John Fisher College Bracken Ridge. 

“I had the best years at school,” she says. 

“I became an educator because I wanted to give back to a system that gave so much to me. 

“My education provided me with a strong sense of belonging and I am committed to recreating this profound feeling for every one of my students, whether it be in a small town or a big city. 

“As a Principal, I have the opportunity to create a school culture and environment for our future leaders, which is exciting.” 

Bec adds she hopes to support her new “students to become better learners, better at life and better people.” 

“I look forward to fostering a positive school culture which upholds the school’s vision and mission and embraces the rich traditions and the work of the former Principals of St Peter Chanel Primary School,” she says. 

“In my first year, I hope to build strong relationships with students, staff, parents and the members of the broader community.  

“Through my leadership, I hope my new students find a purpose greater than themselves.” 

In 2024 Brisbane Catholic Education welcomes 18 Catholic educational leaders into their first Principalship roles, four of which are new to the organisation.  

For more information about St Peter Chanel Primary School The Gap click here. 

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