The School Newsletter Week 4, Term 2 2019

What's Coming Up

Wednesday 22 May: National Simultaneous Story Time

Thursday 23 May: Kinder-S Visit Tenison Apartments

Friday 24 May: St Patrick's Playgroup returns. Every Friday 9.15am -11.00am for 0-5 yrs olds

Wednesday 29 May: P&F meeting in the school library, beginning at 6.30pm. Please consider coming along to support the work of our Parents and Friends Association.

Friday 31 May: School Athletics Carnival - Fearnley Dawes Athletics Centre, Newcastle West

Friday 31 May: P & F Trivia Night fundraiser

From the Principal

This Friday evening, Emma and Andrew will receive the Holy Spirit in the Sacrament of Confirmation. The Sacrament of Confirmation is the second of the three sacraments of Christian initiation. Confirmation completes Baptism. In the laying on of hands and the anointing with Chrism Oil, which first happened at Baptism, we are confirmed with the fullness of the Holy Spirit. In anointing the children, they are called to use their gifts to become involved in the life and mission of the Catholic community.

During the ceremony, the children will renew their baptismal promises. At the end of the ceremony, Bishop Bill will put his hand on the side of the child’s face and say: ‘Peace be with you’. The child replies: ‘And with your spirit’, symbolising his/her place within the Church community.

Wee congratulate both Emma and Andrew on taking this important step in their journey towards Jesus. Please pray that, as Confirmed Catholics, Emma and Andrew will be inspired to become more like Jesus.

The Confirmation ceremony will begin at 7.00pm this Friday evening at St Pius X Church at Windale. All are welcome to attend. All baptised Christians are eligible to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation. If your child is considering Confirmation, please speak with either Fr Gerard, Fr John, Leanne Hyland, your child’s teacher or myself.

Have a good week.

Peter Green.

Welcome Zahlia

Yesterday we welcomed a new student to St Patrick’s – Zahlia, who has joined the Year 1 class. Our students are always excited when new students join our school community, and we know that Zahlia will be made to feel very welcome at St Patrick’s.

SkoolBag App has been de activated

The Skoolbag app has been deactivated for St Patrick's . You can now stay up to date with newsletters, your child's attendance, your child's reports and messages through the Compass parent portal. If you did not receive a letter with your login details, please contact the office. Here is a link to the ‘parent portal - how to use guide’, which outlines how to utilise many features including adding absence notes (page 8 &9).

National Volunteer Week

(L to R) Marlene Kelly, Sharon Koller and Shermaine Fitzgerald

National Volunteer Week is an annual celebration to acknowledge the generous contribution of our nation’s volunteers. Since its humble beginnings in 1952, our school has been built on the generous support of volunteers. Currently, we have many volunteers at St Patrick’s who give generously of their time and talents. To mark National Volunteer Week, I would like to pay tribute to three of our volunteers:

Shermaine Fitzgerald is one of the busiest people I know. Although she is in paid employment for most of the working week, she somehow finds the time to coordinate the operations of our school canteen. Shermaine orders supplies, and she is frequently seen rushing through the aisles of Woolworths for last-minute purchases. Shermaine trains our canteen volunteers in all aspects of running the canteen, including menus, food preparation, hygiene and work health and safety. Shermaine also rosters the canteen volunteers and, whenever there is a last-minute withdrawal, she will more than likely spend her only work day off preparing lunches and working behind the counter. Shermaine is a very positive person who works exceptionally well under pressure, and she loves the interaction with the children when she is working in the canteen. Shermaine also takes on the responsibility for coordinating the cleaning of the canteen at the end of each school term.

Sharon Koller is our uniform shop coordinator. Sharon’s jobs include ordering supplies, stock control, negotiating with suppliers, opening the shop for sales every Friday morning, and preparing a financial statement for the Parents and Friends Association at the end of each month. Sharon’s job becomes very difficult when there is a change in the uniform and when suppliers are unable to deliver in time for the changeover to summer and winter uniforms. Sharon’s cool and calm demeanour belies the stress that she experiences at those times, and she is such a lovely person to work alongside. Without Sharon, we would have to outsource the sale of uniforms, which would probably lead to a significant increase in the price of uniform items. Sharon is also instrumental in bringing back the weekly Playgroup to St Patrick's Hall every Friday starting this week.

Marlene Kelly is one of the many grandparents who work tirelessly to support the day-to-day running of St Patrick’s. In a previous life, Marlene was probably the backbone of her own children’s schools and, when her two grandchildren enrolled at St Patrick’s, she returned for Round Two! Marlene is one of our regular volunteers at the canteen who prepares lunches, serves at the counter and cleans up afterwards. She has an endless supply of stamina and energy! On those special occasions when we have a meal deal day, Marlene’s organisational skills come to the fore. Apart from organising the menu, you will probably find her either cooking a barbecue, preparing a salad, serving the children or cleaning up afterwards. This year, Marlene has introduced a new initiative into the school: About twice each term, she decides on a special Friday menu item and takes four Year 6 students to the canteen on the day before to cook the food. She is a wonderfully patient person who is educating our next generation of Masterchefs!

Thanks to Shermaine, Sharon and Marlene, and to the many volunteers, past and present, without whom we would not be able to offer the services that are available to the St Patrick’s community.

Peter Green (Principal)

Volunteer Induction Handbook and Forms

The Diocese of Maitland Newcastle has devised a volunteer handbook and induction package aimed at covering all departments under the shared services model. You will find a copy of the Volunteer Induction Handbook and forms here – It is also available on our school website and we will have copies available in the office soon.

The aim of this handbook is to give you an introduction to volunteering and provide you with information about the types of services in which you are volunteering. This handbook will form part of your volunteer induction. It is now a requirement for any NEW volunteers to St Patrick’s to complete an induction and the documents included in the Volunteer Handbook.

Volunteer Induction will include:

  • completion of required forms
  • discussion about the contents of the volunteer handbook
  • an introduction to your role

The required forms are;

  1. Volunteer registration form (pg 15)
  2. Volunteer policy declaration form (pg 19)
  3. Code of conduct declaration form (pg 24)
  4. A Criminal History Check (pg 25-31)
  5. Working with children clearance form (pg 32)

Walk Safely To School

Thanks to the staff members, parents and grandparents who accompanied us on our walk to school from Swansea Heads last Friday morning. What a beautiful morning for a walk!

Congratulations Leanne

A Master in Theology

Our Religious Education Coordinator, Leanne Hyland, has recently graduated from the University of Newcastle with a Masters Degree in Theology. The study for this degree involved a great deal of work over a number of years. We are very happy for Leanne, and I am sure that you will join us in congratulating her on her achievement.

National Simultaneous Storytime

This year NSS takes place tomorrow Wednesday 22 May 2019. Year 1 and 2 will participate at Swansea Library and all other St Pat's classes will participate here at school.

Athletics Carnival Next Friday

Fearnley Dawes Athletics Centre, Smith Street, Newcastle West

The school athletics carnival will be held next Friday 31 May 2019 at Fearnley Dawes Athletics Centre, Newcastle West

  • All children will be attending the carnival.
  • Students need to wear their sports uniform and are welcome to wear a T-shirt in their house colour.
  • They will be transported to Newcastle West by bus. The bus will depart school at 9:15am and return by 3:00pm. - Only one bus is booked to return to school
  • At the conclusion of the carnival, parents are welcome to take their children straight home from Newcastle West. The children must be signed out by the class teacher before leaving. Only one bus is booked to return to school.
  • The carnival will commence at 10.00am. Children will rotate around stations in their age groups and will participate in races, long jump, shot put and novelties.
  • Children need to bring fruit and water and their own lunch.
  • Children must have a hat and sunscreen.

In order for the school athletics carnival to run smoothly, we need to rely on parents helpers.

If you are able to volunteer (and have completed the schools volunteer declaration paperwork), please let the office know via email: admin@swansea.catholic.edu.au

We need parent helpers for

  1. Timekeeping
  2. Starter/Marshall
  3. Age group supervisors

School Musical Update

Term 2 Music lessons

This term (and most of next) will be devoted to preparing each class for their involvement in the school musical to take place next term on Thursday 5th September at 7.00pm at St Mary’s High School, Gateshead. We are becoming very familiar with the lyrics and melodies of two songs that we will perform, and dance rehearsals for these two routines have begun in earnest. It’s fabulous to see how readily your children remember each new step from week to week.

Costumes and accessories

I will be enlisting the help of each class teacher to devise a list of requirements that your child will be required to wear for their two dance routines. A note with all the details will come home with your child during the last week of this term. The costuming/clothing and accessories should be very easy to source . . . You might already have the clothing in your wardrobe or you might be able to find it with an inexpensive price tag.

Wanted: Costume Coordinator

We have a large group of students who have acting roles. Their costumes could be a little more involved, depending on which direction we take. I am wondering if there might be a volunteer within our school community who may be prepared to assist me coordinate these costumes. I’d be happy to receive any correspondence regarding this request via email: trish.aumuller@mn.catholic.edu.au

Reminder to lock in the date

It is expected that every student at St Patrick’s will be involved in our musical “Quest: A Tale of Enchantment”. It is important to mark this date on your calendar now and to let your family members and friends know about it too, as they won’t want to miss it!!

Yours in music

Mrs Trish Aumuller

Canteen Volunteers Desperately Needed

Below is the canteen roster for Term 2. If you have any spare time please let Shermaine know on 0407 807 974: As you will see we are still in need of volunteers. The canteen simply cannot operate without you. Please help where you can - even if it's once a term.


The Pit Stop Crew

Canteen Roster

Playgroup Returns

Bring a friend - spread the word - Playgroup resumes this Friday in the Hall at 9.15am!

Council of Catholic School Parents Newsletter

The Council of Catholic School Parents has issued its May 2019 newsletter. You will find it here:


Trivia Night

A yearly event not to be missed!

On Friday 31st May, the P&F will host the annual trivia night, a major fundraiser for our school.

The night will begin at 6.00pm for pre-trivia drinks. This is a great opportunity to mingle with other parents and family members in a relaxed and fun environment.

Please bring some food and drinks to share with your team members. The trivia competition will begin at 6.30pm in the school hall and will finish around 9.30pm.

This year’s dress-up and table decoration theme is ‘Countries Of The World’. Prizes will be awarded for the best dressed individual and best decorated table.

Team and individual registrations are available. To register please go to the QKR app. In the notes section before payment, please type your full name. If you have a team, type your team name, e.g. ‘Team Egypt’. Payments can also be made at the school office. Please remember that this is an adults-only event.

Holy Moly! Staff are walking 50km for Oxfam

Team 'Holy Moley's' are walking 50km for Oxfam - We're sure this is how it will feel!

Can you help our 50km Oxfam trailwalker team reach their fundraising goal of $1650.00? Any amount you can give will go towards making a significant difference to people living in poverty around the world. You can donate using the link below . . Thanks in advance

Earn and Learn

Thank you for your support of our school in the Woolworths Earn & Learn promotion. We will gladly accept your sticker cards. There are collection boxes in the school foyer, in the church foyer and in Woolworths at Swansea. The promotion finishes on Tuesday 25th June.

Entertainment Book Returns

A big thank you to everyone who has supported our Entertainment fundraiser!

We've almost received all the payments and books back from our families. If you haven't paid for yours yet, can you please organise your payment for the Entertainment Book or return your unsold book to the office ASAP. If you ordered the digital membership, please return the Book.

Pay online at www.entbook.com.au/341f03

Unless otherwise stated, the advertisements placed in this Newsletter are placed by independent third parties who have no legal relationship with the Diocese. The activities or services of the advertisers are not supervised or controlled in any way by the Diocese. The Diocese is not in a position to endorse the advertisers or the services provided and make no representation about those matters. Accordingly, the diocese cannot accept any responsibility for the advertisers or the activities or services that are the subject of these advertisements

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