The awards were sponsored by the Father Atanasio Gonelli Charitable Fund, which donates $10,000 to the cause.

Initially, two teachers were to receive scholarships to the value of $5000 each.

However, the organising committee wanted to extend a third award to a deserving Italian teacher, who will also receive $5000 to enrol in a professional development course in Italy and update their teaching methods and techniques.

The winning teachers will be presented with their awards at the Father Atanasio Gonelli Charitable Fund’s annual celebrations, to be held on the first Sunday of March 2020.

The judges were Pino Palamara, Concetta Perna, Pina Bernard, Albina Fabro and Carmen Latella.

The winning Italian teachers are:

  • Francesca Candaten – Perth Modern School

  • Leiah Cook – Catholic Education Office, Sale Diocese

  • Anna Di Perna del Victoria – Penola Catholic College, Broadmeadows and Glenroy

Meanwhile, the winners in the student category of the awards were also announced, and will receive their prizes on Wednesday, November 13, 2019, at the Italian Forum Cultural Centre in Leichhardt, NSW.

Student entries were divided into two sections: primary and secondary.

Secondary students were invited to submit an essay not exceeding 1000 words in response to the topic: 

Families have changed a lot in the past years: from the traditional family, to the extended family, single parents, and families with parents of the same sex. Express your opinion on these changes, and on the role of the family in your life and in modern society.”

Primary school students in Years 5 and 6 were asked to submit an essay of no more than 500 words in Italian, on the topic:

“My family: who it is made up of, where they come from, what they represent for me and how important they are in my development.”

Monetary prizes of $500, $300 and $200 respectively were available in the various categories of primary (Years 5 and 6) and secondary (consisting of three categories: Years 7 and 8, Years 9 and 10, and Years 11 and 12).

The winning secondary students are:

  • 1st - Alexandra Ianitto – Burwood Girls High School (NSW)
  • 2nd - Katya Iannino – Burwood Girls High School (NSW)
  • 3rd - Jacopo Fuiano – Trinity College, Lismore (NSW)
  • 4th - Alex Hains – St Augustine’s College, Brookvale (NSW)
  • 5th - Grace Bonacina – Star of the Sea College, Melbourne (VIC)

The winning primary school students are:

  • 1st - Francesco Tumminia – All Hallows Catholic School, Five Dock (NSW)
  • 2nd - Gioele Goci – After School CO.AS.IT. Melbourne (VIC)
  • 3rd - Isabella Spicer - San Carlo Borromeo Primary School, Greenvale (VIC)
  • 4th - Daniel Russo – Our Lady of Fatima Primary School, Kingsgrove (NSW)
  • 5th – Jenna Hillam – San Carlo Borromeo School, Greenvale (VIC)