The Greek school of Byron Bay is fostering a bigger Greek presence in the Sydney suburb.
The academic year for the new Greek school of Byron Bay commenced with a traditional Agiasmo service to bless the school, performed by Parish Priest Fr Romanos Stergiou.
The new school is under the auspices of the Parish Community of St Anna Gold Coast and Northern Rivers NSW, and its first academic term of 2015 has seen 15 enrolments of local children ranging from five-16 years of age. The enrolments instill a great sense of joy in school teacher Mrs Koralia Petta, who is happy to see the willingness of both students and parents return from last year’s first class.
To accompany the opening of the academic year, the school’s newly elected committee held a dinner dance fundraiser at Lennox Head Community Centre, where 250 people enjoyed food, welcome speeches and dance performances from children of the school.
In his welcome speech, Fr Romanos paid tribute to the Greek Orthodox faithful of previous generations in the area. Fr Romanos further praised the renewal of the Greek Orthodox presence in the district, indicated by the existence of the school and by the many Greek families who attended the dinner dance.
“There were many Greek families in the district in the last century, but they began to disperse into large cities during the 1980s,” Fr Romanos explains.
The recent renewal is comprised of families who have settled in Byron Bay from around Australia and from Greece and Cyprus.