GLOUCESTER’S Barbara Mansfield has been awarded the 2014 Monsignor Frank Coolahan Award for school support.
The award is only given to three recipients from the Maitland-Newcastle dioceses, which includes 44 schools and 18,000 students.
Barbara has been employed at St Joseph’s Primary School in Gloucester since 1974 in the role of school officer - administration.
The award was presented to Barbara at the Dioceses Call to Serve in Newcastle last Tuesday by Bishop Bill Wright.
The director of Catholic schools in the diocese Ray Collins was also present at the award ceremony.
More than 1000 teachers and support staff attended the awards night held at the cathedral in Hamilton.
Barbara was nominated for the Monsignor Frank Coolahan Award in recognition of the many years of unwavering and tireless support that she has given to the local school community.
Barbara is the longest serving staff member in the history of St Joseph’s Gloucester.
Thirty-nine years of service is truly a magnificent effort.
Barbara’s association with St Joseph’s began in 1969, when her eldest daughter commenced kindergarten.
At that time, classes were conducted in the church building - kindergarten was allocated the porch.
The present classrooms were opened that year and when Barbara began working at the school in 1974, her office was shared with the principal - a room that is now a storage room.
In 1994 the present administration block was constructed and Barbara finally had an office to herself.
The COLA (Covered Outdoor Learning Area) was added in 2000 and the BER (Building the Education Revolution) in 2010-11 saw more additions and alterations to the school.
Barbara is the only staff member to witness the school’s facilities evolve from their beginnings to the present day.