Issue #1 7th February 2024
Welcome back to the new school year. Our children have come back to school ready to learn, settled in their behaviour and excited to be in their new grade. If you’ve been at school at 9.00am this year, you will have noticed a new line up area! All of our students fit easily into the new area. The children have made this change perfectly. Well done, children!
We are so glad to welcome our new Kinder students... Louie, Pia, Parker, Rory, Billie, Vaida, Lanikai, Miles, Evie A, Ada, Jay, Havanna, Nash, Ace, Tyson, Koa C, Corbyn, Sally, Santino, Kyan, Ruby, Lucca, James, Grayson, Zahli, Effie, Liam, Reggie, Costa, Jimmy, Harry, Jake, Odin, Oliver, Sam, Will, Priyah, Lexi, Asher, Evie J, Thomas, Evie K, Zander, Cruz, Harvey, Jay Jay, Kiarni, Koa M, Manix, Harlie, Lily, Lacey, Penelope, Katea, Jenson, Domynick, Boston, Leo, Brianna, Elki, Kingston, Lolaina, Reyna, Hannah, Bodhi, Lara, Finch, Kyron, Sonny, Patrick, Daxton and Archie. They have made a wonderful start at big school.
I must also recognise our fantastic Year 6 students – the example they are already setting to the rest of the school is quite exceptional. And they are being such kind buddies! Well done, Year 6.
Next Monday 12th is our Swimming carnival, which is for Year 2 - Year 6 students at Mingara. It is a fun day of activities which Miss Dawson has organised. All children will have plenty of time to swim in events (10m, 20m and 50m) and novelty events. It is a compulsory day for all students.
Parents can attend however there are very restricted viewing opportunities. To ensure that all children are safe, parents are not permitted into the grandstand or along the sides of the pool. It is simply too crowded and unsafe to do so; during our carnivals, children are busy swimming for the majority of the day. If you choose to attend, please keep in mind that parents will only be able to watch from limited spaces, such as the concrete area between the 50m pool and the 'whirlpool', or from the grass area outside. I realise this is far from ideal but we are short of space once our 360 students plus teachers and helpers are poolside. Thank you for your understanding.
I would like to name our Year 5 Sport Vice Captains for 2024; Red: Josi C and Koa F, Blue: Ashlee S and Flynn B, Green: Sophie C and Noah B and Gold: Sienna H and Hayden T. Congratulations!
Opening School Mass
This Friday at 9.15am we have our Opening School Mass, our first for 2024. Parents are welcome to join us if you can.
Staff Development Days
As you would have seen in a recent Compass update and also our school calendar, we have two Staff Development Days this term. Tuesday 2nd and Wednesday 3rd April will be pupil free days, while teachers receive professional learning on our new curriculum. Thank you for your understanding, I realise the strain it can add to families to find care for your children. Hopefully you can enjoy an even longer Easter long weekend.
Our staff look forward to meeting those families who have made an interview time next week. Bookings close on Compass this Friday afternoon. As a reminder, if you need to contact your child’s teacher through the year, you can either email the school office or call the school. Teachers will then contact you within 48 hours. Teachers will not respond via email, they will call you to discuss the matter.
Thank you for sending your children back in their correct school uniform, with the correct school shoes and socks. They are looking quite impressive. Our uniform shop operates each day between 8.15-9.45am only. Orders outside this time must be emailed to the school office for processing.
Canteen – Volunteers needed!
Our canteen is supported by volunteers and can only operate when there are enough volunteers. We need more for this term, especially a Friday which is the busiest day for lunch orders and therefore requires the most volunteers. To ensure the canteen can operate and fulfil orders, we need you! If you can give some of you time once a month or once a term, please contact Gina, Canteen Coordinator, via the school office to register your interest.
Mobiles and Smart Watches
Each year, there are several students who need to bring a mobile phone or smart watch to school as it is required for them to safely get home. Please note, the only reason a child should be bringing a phone is due to possible risky circumstances that may arise when arriving to school or going home from school. If your child does require a phone, I request that you send in a letter to the office. The phone must then, each day, be taken to the school office on arrival and picked up at 3.15pm.
School Carpark Safety
Thank you to the parents who have ceased pulling into the bus bay, due to the increased risk this creates. It is everyone's collective responsibility to use a parking spot when dropping off your children in the morning, only parking in designated parking spots, parking ‘rear to curb’ (this is signposted) and to look closely at both of the pedestrian crossings.
Our Open Day for Kinder 2025 will be held on Tuesday 5th March, from 4.00pm. Enrolment applications are invited from this date. Classes fill quickly, so if you have a child turning 5 years old this year and you are looking for them to begin at St Mary’s next year, please contact the office early in March.
Cinema Under the Stars
Our PIP Team are excited to be hosting our Cinema Under the Stars evening on our school oval on Friday 5th April. More information to come in the following weeks, but please, save the date!
During our January holidays, our library experienced some localised flooding. While we busily undertake the process of replacing damaged items, the library itself will be out of action. Library lessons will continue, however they will be in your child's classroom, and book borrowing will not resume for a number of weeks. It is our priority to have this space fully functioning as soon as possible. Thank you for your understanding.
Opening School Mass
This Friday at 9.15am we will be celebrating our Opening School Mass. All our leaders will pledge their commitment to our school and will receive a special blessing from Father Baby. If you are able to join us we would love to see you there.
Ash Wednesday Mass
Next Wednesday, 14th February we begin the season of Lent. We will begin by having an Ash Wednesday Mass. This will begin at 10am. Year 5 are leading this celebration. If you are able to join us, we would love to see you there.
Year 6 and Kindergarten Welcome Mass
On Sunday 25th February our Year 6 and Kindergarten students will be leading our Sunday Parish Mass. This is a wonderful opportunity to meet new families and for our Kinder students to see their buddy outside of school. Year 6 will lead many of the ministries and Kindergarten will sing a Thanksgiving Hymn. We are very excited for our Parish to meet the newest members of our St Mary's family.
Children who are in Years 4 - 6 who have been Baptised and Confirmed are invited to prepare for the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Our Sacramental Program is run by Sister Jennifer, one of our Parish nuns. Information sessions will be run at St Mary's on Thursday 15th February at 3.30pm or 7pm. Please use the QR code to enrol or the link https://www.trybooking.com/events/landing/1143692? For further information please contact the Parish Office on (02) 4396-4455.
There are currently vacancies for piano tuition during school hours. Please contact Mr Chris Hochkins for further details. Ph. 0414 186 044