Newsletter 2nd March 2022
Ash Wednesday Liturgy
11.00 St Brendan's Church
Combined School Day @ St Mary's
Parents to drop students off and pick up @ St Mary's
7th, 8th @ 9th March
Sovereign Hill Camp St Brendan's & St Mary's
Years 3,4,5 & 6
School Closure Day
Staff ReLate Program
Public Holiday Labour Day
Prep children commence full time schooling
Last day of Term 1 students
School Closure Day
Staff ReLate Program
Start of 2nd Term
Today we begin the Lenten season. The children and staff from St. Mary’s had a school liturgy and St. Brendan’s attended the Parish Mass. Ashes were distributed at each ceremony which remind us that we are entering the season of Lent, when we are encouraged to reflect on our lives and think about what we can give up, take up and how we can support others in need.
Thank you to everyone for keeping the schools informed if they are needing to isolate, have COVID or are staying at home if unwell. While I understand that it is frustrating if children are testing negative and have a runny nose or sore throat, that they cannot attend school, it is important that they remain home as we know that symptoms can often appear before tests indicate that they are infectious. I appreciate everyone doing the right thing to keep our communities safe.
Remember, it is highly recommended that children conduct a rapid test twice weekly- Monday and Thursday mornings to monitor any changes that may occur. RATs are available at the school.
Parents & Friends
The P and F committee at both schools have met and come up with a plan to begin the fundraising for the year. They are also planning a few events that will be social where we can gather together and enjoy each other’s company. Well done to all involved!
Thank you to all parents, staff and children for being part of the scheduled conversations last week. From speaking with teachers, the 15 minutes was well spent discussing assessments, how children have settled into 2022, any concerns, setting goals and celebrating initial successes. It is important that if parents or staff have any concerns or need things to be clarified, that they are addressed sooner rather than later. A phone call or email are often the best way to have a ‘chat’ and stay informed.
Last week the Senior children went to St. Michael’s, Daylesford to meet the staff and students that they will go on camp with next week. The 3 schools will meet again this Friday at St. Brendan’s. The aim was to make some connections with those we are going to spend the 3 days of camp with. The feedback from students and staff was that it was worthwhile and all children got to meet some children that they did not know before.
Camp begins next Monday the 7th March and concludes at 4.30pm, Wednesday the 9th March. A reminder that St. Brendan’s children need to be dropped off and picked up from St. Marys on both days.
Combined Schools Day for the Juniors
While the Senior children are on camp, we thought that it would be a great opportunity for the Junior classes to come together for a combined schools day on Monday the 7th of March at St. Mary’s. Parents are asked that they drop their children off and pick them up from St. Mary’s next Monday. Please contact Clare or myself if this poses a problem as we can easily solve this if need be.
At the Combined School Advisory meeting last week, it was passed that the proposed following closure days go ahead. They are-
- 2 ReLATE days - Friday the 11th of March and Friday the 13th March
- Friday the 8th of April is a RE formation day with Jim Waight. We are combining with St. Pat's Gordon for this day
- June the 1st is a closure day to get our writing essentials started and we are working with Felicity Lane on this day.
- Monday the 31st of October is a Report writing / Planning Day.
We still have one that we will get sorted soon. We are allowed 2 extra days this year because we are part of the ReLATE program, as many Ballarat schools are this year.
All of these days are linked to our Annual Action Plan and reflect our goals for Terms 1 and 2, 2022.
Next Friday, the staff have their first day of the ReLATE program. ReLATE - Reframing Learning and Teaching Environments, ‘is a trauma- informed model that can support schools to create real and measurable change in culture and practice, leading to improved teaching, learning and wellbeing.’
It is run by the Mackillop Institute and our facilitators are Esther Cini and Ben Sacco and spans over a 3 year period. Many schools are part of this roll out and we are looking forward to beginning the journey next week. This is a school closure day for children.
While it is exciting that we are returning to some sort of normality, I urge all of you to stay safe everyone and take care,
The conveyance allowance is a form of financial assistance to help families in rural and regional Victoria with the cost of trans-porting their children to their nearest appropriate school/campus. The conveyance allowance is available to eligible students travelling by public transport, private car and private bus.
Reside 4.8km or more by the shortest practicable route from that school/campus attended
If you would like to apply for Conveyance allowance please download and complete the application form below and return to the School Office by Friday 11th March 2022
Camps, Sports & Excursions Fund (CSEF) Claim Information
School camps provide children with inspiring experiences in the great outdoors.
Excursions encourage a deeper understanding of how the world works and sports teach teamwork, discipline and leadership. All are part of a healthy curriculum.
CSEF will be provided by the Victorian Government to assist eligible families to cover the costs of school trips, camps and sporting activities.
If you hold a valid means-tested concession card or are a temporary foster parent, you may be eligible for CSEF. A special consideration category also exists for asylum seeker and refugee families. The allowance is paid to the school to use towards expenses relating to camps, excursions or sporting activities for the benefit of your child.
The annual CSEF amount per student is:
•• $125 for primary school students
•• $225 for secondary school students.
HOW TO APPLY
Download the CSEF application form via link below
Please complete the CSEF form and return to the office by Friday 11th March 2022
In recent days I have met with young people in my work and private life who are starting to feel very worried about the events in Europe right now.
I know how difficult it is as a parent to see our children feeling worried and anxious about news and events beyond our circle of control.
I think we would all agree that our children have had plenty of scary messages in the past two years
and I just wanted to reach out now to offer any support in terms of discussions and or resources.
The best response right now would be to limit access to media/news as this will only expose young
hearts and minds to images that are hard to erase or even make sense of.
Inevitably, there will be discussions happening around them which may expose them to key words
such as war, bombs etc.
I would encourage you to speak with the teachers and Inez with the slightest concern which will
then allow staff to address any conversations and or concerns at school.
Parents often find it difficult to know what to say, often, there is little we can say other than to listen with our full attention to our children’s views and concerns. In truth, this is often all those children are looking for. They are testing to see if we are there for them and they are not looking for definitive answers or solutions. However, there are some messages which may be helpful at this time, and I am happy to discuss further for anybody who is interested.
Parenting has been challenging in recent times and there are spaces for support and information
available, please reach out – I am available.
Pastoral care – email@example.com
Stella is turning 12 on the 15th March
Gardening and Tidying Roster 2022
28th Feb-13th Mar: Riordan Family
14th Mar -27th Mar: Slater Family