ABOUT ST DOMINIC’S
Co-ordinates: S 26.2218′; E 28.2640′
The benefits of an all-girls school are evident in the fact that girls are always at centre stage. Of necessity they participate, take charge and get involved. Girls have to be independent at an all-girls school. They are critical thinkers, self-starters, able learners and contributing team players.
St Dominic’s is not just a school with girls, it is a school for girls.
St Dominic’s School prides itself on its high academic standard which is made possible by the excellence of its staff and the small classes. Classes are kept to less than 30 pupils. Most of the pupils who enter St Dominic’s in the Pregrade School continue through the grades and matriculate here, thus giving their school years a continuity and stability which is of great value in these times of rapid change.
HISTORY OF ST DOMINIC’S SCHOOL
Eighty-seven years ago the magnificent buildings of St Dominic’s Convent and School rose from the African dust to stand as a tribute and monument to the achievements, dedication and resolve of its foundress, Mother Rose Niland.
Mother Rose was an extraordinary woman who – despite limited resources and opposition from various parties – saw a very real need to establish a Convent School in the mining town of Boksburg.
She received the Deed of Transfer encompassing 59 stands in the Township of Boksburg on the freehold farm Vogelfontein No. 5, dated 18 November 1919. East Rand Proprietary Mines (ERPM) donated the use of further stands for the use of sport and recreation. The original building, with its thirty acres of land cost one hundred thousand pounds.
The foundation stone of St. Dominic’s Convent School was laid by Bishop Cox, O.M.I. Catholic Bishop of Johannesburg on 14 September 1921. In his speech he said:
‘It is a proud and memorable day, not only for Mother Rose, (…), but also for the people of Boksburg. Such an Institution must play an important part in the education of the country.’
The architect, Mr James Charles Cook, was responsible for the design of the landmark building with its own Chapel and distinctive bell tower, and Mr Francis (Frank) Isaac Allwright was contracted for the building operations.
On 31 July 1923 St Dominic’s officially opened with an enrolment of twenty-eight boarders and thirty-two day students. To accommodate the growing number of students over the years many exciting and innovative building projects were undertaken.
A School hall and new wing were built in 1965.
Marian House, a retirement “village” for retired Sisters, was built on St Dominic’s grounds in 1990.
St Dominic’s Pre-Grade School was opened in 1991. It started with 48 children in Grade 0.
In 1999 the massive, state-of the art, all-purpose Jubilee Centre was officially opened.
Expansion of the Pre-Grade School in 2000 and 2008. It now accommodates 150 children from Grade 000 to Grade 0.
In 2010, Construction of accredited pool.
From being a Boarding School staffed mainly by Dominican Sisters, St Dominic’s changed to a Day School in the early 1980s, with mainly lay teachers on the staff. The name was changed from St Dominic’s Convent to St Dominic’s Catholic School for Girls to reflect these changes. Currently the school accommodates over 1 000 learners from Pre-Grade (Grade 000) to Grade 12.
In its 87 years of existence St Dominic’s has always held its own, adapting to the challenges of an ever-changing educational, political, technological and social environment. Yet, the School has never compromised its Catholic ethos and core values. Religious and moral values are given special emphasis in the curriculum, and Christian Catholic values pervade the atmosphere and ethos of the school. The non-racial, multi-cultural education offered enables pupils to enrich, refine and broaden their education without losing their own roots.
LEGENDS BEHIND THE SCHOOL BADGE
Black-and-white: the colours of the Dominican Sisters’ habits.
Loaf of bread: recalls the story of a miraculaous supper served to St Dominic and his starving monks, by angels.
Star: St Dominic, the founder of the Dominican Order, was said to have a star or corona of light on his forehead at his baptism.
Quills: Represent teaching and learning.
Dog: St Dominic’s mother had a symbolic prenatal dream of a dog bearing a torch.
Rosary: A Catholic devotional aid
Cross: The Christian symbol of the Crucifixion of Christ. It is worn by followers of Christ, and adorns churches and other Christian institutions.
“Veritas”: the Dominican motto meaning “truth”.
PAST PRINCIPALS OF ST DOMINIC’S
1923 – 1934 Sister Sebastian O’Sullivan
1935 – 1937 Sister Aquinas Power
1938 – 1947 Sister de Montfort
1948 – 1949 Sister de Ricci
1950 – 1952 Sister Gerard
1953 – 1954 Sister Reginald
1955 – 1967 Sister Leontia
1968 – 1979 Sister de Ricci
1980 – 1987 Sister Flora
1988 – 2002 Mrs Rosa Calaca (de Souza)
2003 – 2008 Mrs Pam Jurgens (Pre-Grade)
2003 – 2013 Mrs Geraldine Gous (High School)
2014 – 2014 Mrs Estia Sales (High School)
CURRENT PRINCIPALS OF ST DOMINIC’S
2003 – date Mr Roger Loring (Headmaster)
2003 – date Mrs Yvonne Van Dyk (Primary School)
2009 – date Mrs Debbie Meyer (Pre-Grade)
2015 – present Mrs Sharon Fitzgerald