The School Newsletter Week 5, Term 3 2020

What's Coming Up

Wednesday 19 August: The students of Years 5 and 6 will compete in the annual Newcastle Permanent Mathematics Competition tomorrow

Friday 21 August: Term Fees Due

Monday 24 August:The ICAS Digital Technologies test will be administered for those students who have registered for it.

Tuesday 25 August: The ICAS English test will be administered for those who have registered

Wednesday 26 August: P & F Meeting via ZOOM - link and instructions in this newsletter

Monday 31 August: ICAS tests this week include Maths and Spelling

From the PrinciPAL

This weekend marks the 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time. In the Gospel (Matthew 16:13-20), Jesus names Simon as the rock upon which he will build his Church. In doing this, Jesus gives Simon a new name - Peter - the Greek word for "rock."

When a new baby is welcomed into a family, the name chosen for the baby is usually carefully chosen. Sometimes a particular name is chosen because of its meaning, which might reflect the family’s values or the personal traits that the family wishes to develop in their new child.

During this week, talk with your children about the significance of their name, and why you chose that name for them.

Read the Gospel together and talk about why Jesus chose “rock” (“Peter”) as a nickname for Simon.

Ask each family member to choose a name for themselves that they think Jesus might give them if he was describing their strengths as a disciple. It does not need to be a conventional or common name. What name would you choose and why?

Have a good week.

Peter Green.

From the REC

Mary Mackillop Feast Day

To acknowledge and celebrate the life of Mary Mackillop and the impact that she had on spreading love and kindness throughout our society, our students participated in an ‘Acts of Kindness Crusade’ and a class liturgy. The Mini Vinnies team organised the Acts of Kindness Crusade, inviting every student to think about and choose an act of kindness that they would do for someone else over the next couple of weeks. This initiative was inspired by Mary Mackillop’s teaching, to ‘never see a need without doing something about it’. Our students were keen to write down their acts of kindness, which are displayed in our school. Our students show so much love and compassion for others. We thank the Mini Vinnies team for giving up their lunch time to organise this wonderful initiative.

Spirituality in the Classroom

One of our school improvement goals is to provide spiritual formation for our students and staff. This term I am focused on providing students with the opportunity to explore their spirituality through ‘Christian Breathing Meditation’. The fundamental element of spirituality and spiritual formation is ‘the Breath’, which in the scriptures is synonymous with the Breath of God, the Breath of the Cosmos, and the Holy Spirit. If you would like more information about this spiritual practice, or if you would like to view some of the content that I will be using in the classrooms, please visit: https://livingspirituality.com.au/about/

Leanne Hyland

Religious Education Coordinator


The Catholic Schools Office has sent the following advice in relation to testing for COVID-19. The source of this advice can be found at www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/symptoms-and-testing:

People who should get tested

Anyone with a cough, a sore or scratchy throat, shortness of breath, loss of taste, loss of smell or a fever (37.5° or higher), even if symptoms are mild. Most people without these symptoms do not require testing.

Advice to Parents:

Day care and preschool aged children (0-4 years)

  • If your child is sick, keep them at home.
  • If your child has symptoms like a runny nose, fever, cough or sore throat, call your GP.
  • In an emergency, please call Triple Zero (000) or go to your closest emergency department.
  • See the Raising children COVID-19 family guide.

Primary school children (5-11 years)

  • If your child is sick, keep them at home.
  • For primary school aged children with symptoms of COVID-19, call your GP and ask about getting your child tested.
  • If you visit a public testing clinic, check that your local clinic tests children 11 years and under.
  • See the Raising children COVID-19 family guide.

Secondary school children (12-17 years)

  • If your teenager is sick, keep them at home and get them tested for COVID-19.
  • If you visit a public testing clinic, check that your local clinic tests children 17 years and under.

Covid 19 Reponse Plan

All parents should have received a copy of our school Covid-19 response plan (as below), via email last week. It is important that you keep your contact details up to date with the school office.



" Dear Parents and Carers

I write with regard to the traditional holding of farewell/graduation liturgies and Masses for Year 6, Year 10 and Year 12.

In any normal year these are such a rich part of the life of the school and we cherish them as so valued for our culture. However this year is like no other and we live with the great challenge of keeping our students and staff in a healthy place and ensuring all our practices keep COVID-19 at bay.

Right across the Diocese not only in schools but in parishes, all formal gatherings of the community for liturgy or Mass to farewell a group are suspended for the remainder of 2020. This is very much the reality of where we are at as a community.

While this is disappointing to convey, it is nevertheless in keeping with our public health directions and we simply do not engage in any practice that exposes a school community to any health risk.

Schools will reimagine, within the strict confines of our COVID protocols, how they farewell a cohort from each school.

I thank you for understanding the need for this direction which is always made with the best interests of our young people in mind.

Every good wish.

Yours sincerely, Gerard Mowbray"

"Canteen REady"


“Kids, take out the bins. Kids, empty the dishwasher. Kids, clean up dinner!” The list is endless. Chores, chores, chores. We are all sick of it. Do this. Do that. No! Do it yourself mum! But chores have a bright side. Sounds crazy, right?

Mum tells you to empty the dishwasher. Boom! Done! Favourite child right then and there. She tells you to empty the bins. Loves you 1000% more than your sibling. When you do your chores, your life will turn around. No more being downgraded by siblings. It’s the best solution, and you know it!

“Cha- Ching!” You hear the sound of your $10 dropping into your piggy bank. Feels great, doesn’t it? All because you simply took out the bins or washed the car. By earning $10 a week you’ll have so much money by the end of the year, you won’t be able to count it. $10 a week = a great lifetime of happiness. Sometimes money can buy happiness. You just got yourself a new bike from CHORES!

“Happy 23rd birthday! I got you a steel wool ball and some bin bags!”

“I don’t know how to use… that.”

That’s what’s going to happen if you don’t do chores now. You’ll be an incompetent adult who can’t care for yourself. Next thing you know your gravestone is saying: ‘The Incompetent One’. No one wants that. You want to be known for the great things you did, not the things you didn’t do.

Just do your chores. I know it really is crazy, but only good things come from it. Money!

All you need is money. Oh, and love or whatever. But like money is amazing. When you do your chores, you will get praised for it. We all love that and … imagine, by the time you’re out of the house, you’ll be rich!

Jemima (Year 6)


Last Friday I met with Cheryl Murphy (Yasmin Catley’s office) Margaret Pannell (bus operator trainer at Keolis Downer), and Peter Byrne (Safety and Wellness Business Partner, Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle) in regard to the Kiss and Ride zone on Northcote Avenue outside our school. I believe that we have a proposal that will enable us to extend the Kiss and Ride zone and hence maintain a more acceptable level of safety during the morning drop-offs and the afternoon pick-ups.

The proposal is to move the bus stop west to the present Kiss and Ride zone outside the school. The bus stop would be long enough to accommodate two buses, i.e. 27 metres, and would finish at the red concrete lip on the kerb.

The area from the lip to the Tenison Apartments driveway would be designated as our Kiss and Ride zone. This is a length of 56 metres, up from 37 metres which is the length of the current Kiss and Ride zone. This will allow up to 11 vehicles in the Kiss and Ride zone at one time, up from the present maximum of seven vehicles.

In addition, we are proposing that the kerb outside nos. 158 and 160 Northcote Avenue – across the road from the school – also be designated as an extra Kiss and Ride zone. This would allow four vehicles at a time. This second Kiss and Ride zone would become operational when the school crossing supervisor has been appointed to our school.

We are currently investigating any safety concerns related to having a bus zone in such proximity to a school crossing. No decisions have been made, but we are certainly closer to a solution that will make the morning drop-offs and the afternoon pick-ups safer.

Peter Green


Last Tuesday, Annabelle’s (Year 5) navy fleecy school jumper was misplaced while the school photos were being taken. The jumper is labelled with the name ‘Harrison Low’ or ‘H Low’. Could you please check the name in your child’s jumper and, if it belongs to Annabelle, would you mind returning it to the school office? Thank you in anticipation.

Canteen News


The next meeting of the P&F will take place on Wednesday evening next week (26th August). The meeting will take place via Zoom, beginning at 6.30pm. It has been scheduled to run for 1½ hours. Meeting via Zoom will enable you to contribute your ideas without leaving home.

If you plan to attend this meeting tomorrow (Wednesday) evening:

  1. Make sure you have downloaded Zoom to your device.
  2. Use this link or copy it into your search bar: https://mncatholic.zoom.us/j/97460683839
  3. Click on ‘Open Zoom meetings’.
  4. Click on ‘Join with computer audio’.
  5. Click on ‘Start video’.
  6. If you are prompted to type a password, the password is 160484.

Looking forward to seeing you there.

Focus on Positive Behaviour for Learning


A copy of this Parish Bulletin and other accompanying documents can be found within this week's newsletter alert on Compass


As a caring community we would like to continue to offer our support to the Santamaria family after the loss of their dearly loved father and husband. If you can help to maintain their lawns for the rest of the year, it would be greatly appreciated. Please click on the link below where you will be taken to a lawn mowing roster, where you can volunteer to help on a particular Saturday.



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