Introducing the Barry Dwyer Learning Space
L-R: Jan Heyworth, Joseph Dwyer, Greg Whitby, Jan Dwyer and Rosemary Dwyer
The Barry Dwyer Learning Space at the Catholic Education Office (CEO) was officially opened on Monday 22 March.
The learning space was dedicated to a former CEO staff member, Barry Dwyer, who passed away in January 2009. The Barry Dwyer Learning Space is a tribute to Barry’s work and the quality of Catholic schooling he has inspired.
Until his death, Barry was employed as a part-time research officer in the Office of the Executive Director. The quality of Barry’s work was an expression of his life-long commitment to the ethos of Catholic schooling.
The space was blessed in an intimate ceremony with Barry’s wife, Jan Dwyer, son, Joseph and daughter, Rosemary, and former colleagues at the CEO and principal, Michael Hopley representing schools. The space will be used for the professional learning opportunities of school and CEO staff.
Greg Whitby, executive director of schools, welcomed the guests and spoke of how Barry was inspirational to his colleagues.
‘The word that echoes in my mind when I think of Barry is ‘imagination,’ said Greg. ‘I remember he used to say, ‘Greg, this is a work of imagination and I can say this is one of his greatest legacies for our system, and we will continue to focus on imagination in our work in Catholic schooling now, and in the future.’
Jan Dwyer said she was touched by the dedication.
‘This dedication will be a reminder of Barry’s friendship and legacy to education, particularly Catholic education,’ she said. ‘The whole family is very proud and we are deeply touched by this gesture.’
The ceremony was also an opportunity to launch one of Barry’s last pieces of writing. The Way We Do Things Around Here is a program which helps schools to explore how the Catholic worldview and culture help shape the modern Catholic school.
When launching the publication Jan Heyworth, head of Religious Education and Learning Services said the piece of work was a symbol of Barry’s legacy.
‘It is my great pleasure to be asked to launch The Way We Do Things Around Here,’ said Jan. ‘As one of Barry’s last writing projects, it is symbolic of his vast professional legacy, a legacy which we regard as a ‘pearl beyond price’.’
The learning space will display a framed photo and dedication to Barry. The dedication reads, ‘Barry Dwyer was a gifted teacher who inspired a love of learning in those he taught; a love of teaching in those with whom he worked and a love of life in those closest to him…While some of that rich history has gone forever, Barry has left in print and conversation, the legacy of his knowledge, wisdom and hopes for the future of Catholic education. His was a life guided by faith; a life woven with the threads of humility, intellect and humour.’
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