What's Coming Up?
- Wed 15 Sept: Wellbeing Wednesday
- Fri 17 Sept: End of Term Iso Disco
Term 4 Calendar
Term 4 is usually one of milestones and celebrations: overnight excursions, disco, Kinder orientation, swimming lessons, swimming carnival, liturgies, leadership speeches, awards ceremony, Year 6 graduation and Christmas carols . . . to name just a few. Sadly, some of these will not happen this year. On the other hand, we will do our very best to celebrate at least some of these milestones and to recognise the achievements of our students. We will do our very best to involve the parents and carers in some of these special occasions – even if you are viewing it from a screen.
The following dates are subject to any public health orders that may be in place.
- Tue 5 Oct: Term 4 begins. Home-based learning to continue.
- Wed 13 Oct: Parent Engagement Group (PEG) meeting by Zoom, 7.30 to 9.00pm.
- Mon 25 Oct: Kindergarten and Year 1 students return to school.
- Mon 1 Nov: Years 2 and 6 students return to school.
- Mon 8 Nov: Years 3, 4 and 5 students return to school.
- Thu 11 & Fri 12 Oct: Year 5/6 camp at Point Wolstoncroft (to be confirmed).
- Wed 17 Nov: Parent Engagement Group (PEG) meeting by Zoom, 7.30 to 9.00pm.
- Mon 22 to Fri 26 Nov: Book Week.
- Mon 29 Nov: Year 5 leadership day.
- Fri 3 Dec: Year 5 leadership speeches and voting for 2022 student leaders.
- Tue 7 Dec: End-of-year awards ceremony.
- Thu 9 Dec: 200 Nights book party.
- Fri 10 Dec: School swimming carnival (to be confirmed).
- Wed 15 Dec: Last day for students.
- Thu 16 Dec: Last day for staff.
From the Principal
As we approach the end of Term 3, this is an opportune time to thank the parents and carers whose work is critical to ensuring that vital services continue to be provided to the public during this pandemic.
We have parents and carers who work in health and social care, including doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics and social workers, as well as those who volunteer their services in this arena.
Some of our parents and carers work in education and childcare.
A number of our parents and carers work in the food industry, both in distribution and sales.
We are protected by parents and carers who work in public safety, including police, fire and rescue, and armed forces personnel.
Some of our parents and carers work in the transport industry, operating transport through which supply chains pass.
There are parents and carers working in the utilities, communication and finance sectors, delivering essential services such as banking, energy, information technology, postal services and waste disposal.
Many of these parents and carers risk their health - and their lives - in delivering these services to the public. To these people, we owe a great debt of gratitude.
Whilst a relaxation of restrictions is now a possibility, we must continue to look after the wellbeing of our precious children. Help them to remember the ways in which they have successfully handled hardships in the past. Help them to understand that these experiences strengthen their character and prepare them for future challenges. An optimistic and positive outlook enables your child to appreciate the good things in life and to keep going even in the most difficult times. Appreciate and acknowledge their accomplishments. This is not the first pandemic in human history. People have got through previous pandemics without the technology that has made it possible for us, during this pandemic, to maintain social connections, to earn a living and to educate our children.
Our teachers and support staff miss you all terribly. The school remains lifeless without your active presence. These are times when we have to stand together as one family belonging to the entire world. We pray that vaccinations will bring the pandemic under control. We pray for a healing of those whose health has been compromised by this pandemic. We pray for the eternal repose of the souls of those who have died. Humanity has seen worse, and every time we have bounced back. We will bounce back again. Being hopeful is the key.
The school holidays will begin at the end of this week. At this stage we anticipate a few more weeks of home-based learning after the school holidays before the staggered return of the students begins. Although many of you will still have responsibilities at work, the school holidays will provide some respite from the home-based learning programs. Recharging your batteries and looking after your own wellbeing will be very important at this time.
The most important lessons that your children are learning are the ways in which you are managing the sadness, the stress, the fatigue and the frustration that this pandemic has delivered. I remain in awe of the ways in which all of you are managing.
Tomorrow (Wednesday 15th September), we will be not participating in structured lessons in the best interest of the well-being of the students. This day is an opportunity to take time to unplug, recharge, reset, refocus and participate in a screen-free day as we navigate the ongoing lockdown.
For this day, teachers are encouraging all students to complete as many tasks as they like and share their experiences with the school on our Facebook thread or with their teacher via email, teams or seesaw. The link below provides a selection of tasks that students could complete throughout the day.
End of Term ISO DISCO
This Friday we will bop till we drop at our end of term virtual disco!
OUR RETURN TO SCHOOL IN TERM 4
In order to bring the students back to school in a COVID-safe way, there will be a staggered return to face-to-face teaching from October. The students will return to face-to-face learning with NSW Health approved COVID-safe settings in the following order:
- From 25th October: Kindergarten and Year 1.
- From 1st November: Years 2 and 6.
- From 8th November: Years 3, 4 and 5.
If stay-at-home orders are lifted in the Lake Macquarie LGA before 25th October, all students, including those living in the Central Coast LGA, will return to face-to-face learning.
If COVID cases in the Lake Macquarie LGA increase significantly, learning from home will resume until case numbers drop.
With the weather now becoming somewhat warmer, we will revert to the summer uniform in Term 4.
Unfortunately, COVID restrictions do not allow us open the uniform service for face-to-face sales. The only way to order uniform items is through the QKR app. All orders for Term 4 must be made no later than Tuesday 28th September at 5.00pm, and will be made available for collection at the start of Term 4.
As always, we are indebted to Sharon Koller and Liz Sharpe for making the uniform service available to us.
HAVE YOUR SAY ABOUT OUR SCHOOL
You may recall that parents, staff and students (Years 4 to 6) participated in an online survey last year called Tell Them From Me (TTFM). The data that we received provided us with valuable feedback in relation to faith, learning, student engagement and wellbeing, and it will help to better inform our Diocesan system as well as our own school improvement agenda. Thanks to input from you and from each of our stakeholders, here is a link to our key learnings and key actions that have come from that survey:
Commencing Tuesday 5th October 2021, students, parents and staff members will again be given the opportunity to participate in this survey. The survey will take approximately 15 to 20 minutes to complete.
As parents and carers of students in our school, we deeply value your feedback and we encourage you to partner with us by completing the survey. The information that we gather allows us to hear directly from you and to gain an insight into what you think is important about the work we do, how we communicate with you and where you think we need to improve.
As you can see, we use the feedback you provide us to action strategies for improvement. We believe that this model of consultation enables us to promote positive outcomes for our students in regard to their academic progress and their social and emotional wellbeing.
If you have questions about this survey, please do not hesitate to contact me.
BOOKS, BOOKS, BOOKS!!
1. NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge
All of our students in Kinder, Year 1 and Year 2 have completed the NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge, and four students have reached the goal of 200 nights of reading. Congratulations to Sebastian, Ahlia, Shyanna and Lara.
2. Australian Reading Hour
Today (Tuesday 14th September) is officially a day to celebrate the joy of reading. Click on this link for book suggestions: https://australiareads.org.au/australian-reading-hour/
3. Book Club
Book Club is open and home delivery is available! In response to the current lockdowns, Scholastic has added the temporary option for all parents to have their orders sent directly to their homes. When parents place their Issue 6 Book Club orders, they may select the home delivery option for $7.50. Go to https://scholastic.com.au/media/6421/bc621web.pdf
4. Story Box Library
You may also like to access Story Box Library which is a subscription-based educational website. Our school has paid a subscription. Go to https://storyboxlibrary.com.au/.
- User name: Stories2281
- Password: Stories2281
Another suggestion for adding some variety to your reading material while you are unable to access the school library or the public library is to look at SORA. Details to access this are as follows:
Install the Sora app from your app store: Select my school isn't listed: Search for ACEN - then select "this my school": Click on "Sign in using ACEN Member Collection".
When you are in SORA, you will be asked for your web password.
You can search for a book, but many are already borrowed, so to avoid disappointment, use the “Refine “ button.
Select “Show available books only”.
FREE COLOURING AND PAPER CRAFT DOWNLOADS
Ben Moldrich has very kindly shared a website that has a lot of paper craft and colouring activities that children might wish to do during lockdown. Thanks Ben.
If any other parents or carers have any lockdown treasures to share, we would love to hear from you.
DANCERS, ACTORS, MUSICIANS AND SINGERS IN YEARS 4, 5 AND 6
ASPIRE is the annual performing arts showcase of our Diocese, culminating in a production at the Civic Theatre, Newcastle. For more information, or if your child is interested in auditioning for a role in the 2022 production, visit https://aspire.mn.catholic.edu.au/join-us/2022-auditions/.
OUR NEXT PEG MEETING - Wed 13 October 2021
We are currently landscaping along the front of the school. SCS Tree Services has supplied the leaf mulch.
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