Issue #2 Wednesday 22nd February 2023
50 Year Celebrations
This year is the school's 50th anniversary and we are excited to celebrate this huge occasion in a number of ways. Can you believe that the students and teachers of the past actually looked ahead to this occasion and made a time capsule! It has been unearthed but is still unopened. We will open it in the coming months, with children and parents invited to be part of it. I wonder, should we make a new time capsule for the future St Mary's community?
School Feast Day Celebrations: Each year we celebrate our school on the feast of 'Our Lady, Help of Christians'. The feast day is May 24th and our school traditionally celebrates the day on the Friday closest to the day; this year we will celebrate with Mass, Sporting activities and a barbeque followed by our Teachers vs Year 6 game on Friday May 26th.
Anniversary Dinner: On Saturday 27th May we will hold a dinner event for families, current and past, to celebrate our school. It will be an evening of fun, laughter and dancing which will be held at The Halekulani Club. We are currently seeking parent volunteers to help promote and finalise arrangements with the club. Please look out for a survey which will be emailed in the coming days.
School Concert: The last school concert was held in 2017 and our 50th anniversary is a great reason to hold another. We are currently finalising the details but it will be held in mid-September at the Art House in Wyong. There will be day and evening performances and all students K-6 will be involved in this wonderful school spectacular. We look forward to sharing more details with you in the coming weeks.
Today we celebrate the beginning of the Lenten Season with Ash Wednesday. Lent is an important season of the Liturgical Calendar, a time of spiritul reflection and renewal. During our Ash Wednesday Mass (11.30am 22/2), ashes are placed on the forehead as a symbol of our faith.
Staff Development Day
On Friday 10th March, our teachers will engage in training for 'Rock and Water', an initiative that will be in all classes from Term 2. The day will be a pupil free day.
An 'event' (permission note) went onto Compass this week for our Cross Country event next Friday. It is a compulsory event in which all of the children K-6 are able to have fun, have-a-go and complete a run around Jenny Dixon Reserve. Kinder children will get to run with their buddies. We look forward to welcoming parents to attend and watch from around the course.
Our Year 3 and Year 5 students will sit NAPLAN testing from March 15th. NAPLAN is held during a two week window where the children sit testing for Writing, Reading, Language Conventions, Spelling and Numeracy.
Please drive slowly through the carpark at all times. We have had a few near misses this year already with children on our carpark pedestrian crossings. Please also DO NOT pull into the bus bay to drop children off, but use a car space instead.
Opening School Mass
Thank you to all our parents, grandparents and parishoners who joined us for our Opening School Mass on Friday morning. The students lead the ministries beautifully and our Year 5 and 6 Leaders pledged their commitment to our school.
Welcome Mass Year 6 and Kindergarten
This Sunday at 9am we look forward to celebrating mass with our Parish Community. Our Year 6 students will lead all the ministries and our Kinder students will sing a Thanksgiving Song. This was a huge success last year and was a great way to meet other families for both Year 6 and Kindergarten parents. We are asking Year 6 families to bring a plate of food to share after mass. Children don't need to wear school uniform, casual clothes are all that is needed.
Sacred Space - Year 6
Thank you to our Year 6 students who shared our school STARS to the community during Week 3. We loved seeing "Star Girl" and hearing how we can follow the St Mary's STARS. For new families to our school our school STARS are:
S - Share Fun
T - Think Safe Act Safe
A - Act Responsibly
R - Respect All God Has Made
S - Speak With Kindness.
Today we begin the season of Lent. Lent is an important time in the Catholic year as it is a time when we prepare for the death of Jesus. We will attend Mass this morning and receive ashes on our foreheads. The ashes are created by burning palms from the previous year's Palm Sunday celebration. The ashes are an outward sign of our faith and humanity. Lent is a time where we focus on three things; prayer, fasting and almsgiving (the act of giving charity to another). Our students will be talking about these three areas repeatedly over the next six weeks. As a community we support Cartias Australia through "Project Compassion." This year the theme is "For all Future Generations" and reminds us that the good we do today extends to impact the lives of generations to come. Each classroom will have a Project Compassion Box. We are encouraging students and families to give what they can to support this. Our Mini Vinnies team will be creating a variety of opportunities to raise funds for this charity.
Mini Vinnies Leaders
Congratulations to Mia H, Phoebe E, Louis F, Ella S, Isaac A and Isabella B who have been elected Mini Vinnies Leaders. They received their badges on Friday at our Opening School Mass. We were blessed to have Bob Steele in attendance to hand out the badges. Bob is one of our local St Vincent DePaul leaders in our community.
Many of our Year 4 students and some Years 5 and 6 students will begin their preparation for the Sacrament of Reconciliation this week. Please keep them in your prayers.
Sacred Space Year 5
This week our Year 5 students from two classes will share their learning in Religious Education. The focus will be on Lent. If you would like to join us for this, it will begin at 1.50pm on Thursday afternoon.
Mini Vinnies Easter Raffle
Our annual Easter Raffle is back!
Donations of Easter eggs, baskets and gift bags are gratefully accepted from Monday 6th March. Tickets will be sold on the top playground before school and at recess. The Mini Vinnies team wil begin selling tickets on Monday 14th March.
The raffle will be drawn in Week 11 with all money donated going to support local families doing it tough. Tickets are 50c each or 3 for $1.00.
Technology - Cyber Safety Week
During Week 7 we will have a focus on Cyber Safety. Teachers will hold specific lessons on Cyber Safety and how to use technology appropriately. All students will sign an annual user agreement and a user agreement will be sent home via Compass for parents to complete. As Friday of Week 7 is a Staff Development Day, we are encouraging a family movie night where if possible you watch "Ralph Wrecks the Internet." This animated movie highlights the importance of Cyber Safety. There is also a wealth of information and resources on e Safety Commissioners website. Please see the link below.
St Mary's Tech Team
This year we have formed a ‘St Mary’s Tech Team’, made up of students from Year 5 and 6. We would like to congratulate the following children who made the team, showing in their application that they have skills to share with students and staff at St Mary’s. Beau B, Milo C, Henry H, August K, Louis F, Oscar S, Eva S, Byron H and Lily D.
This Friday, 24th February, we will be holding our school swimming presentation at 2.45pm. This will be held in the Undercroft. All children who placed 1st, 2nd or 3rd overall for their age group will receive their trophy. Parents, you are welcome to join us.
2023 St Mary’s Swimming Carnival -RED WINS
What a spectacular day we had last Monday! The weather was great just like the behaviour, effort and sportsmanship of every child at St Mary’s School. Every child gave their best whether it was 10m, 20m, 50m or novelty races. We have the most amazing parents at Toukley, such a big Carnival would have no chance of running without you! We had lots of helpers – and I really thank every person who gave their time - we had 3 sets of workers with 10m, 20m and 50m events simultaneously running to have children all occupied. We then had another great band of parents and high school students who spent an hour and a half in the water giving the kids such a fun experience in the novelty events. My special thanks to the wonderful 50m helpers – you worked so hard to get through the large number of heats. Also those wonderful St Brigid's students who spent all day in the pool to act as water safety for our less able swimmers.
Thankyou St Mary’s teachers - you worked without a break and you allowed our kids to have a fabulous day!The water guns were a major highlight!!! What fun the kids had during the novelties!!!
Congratulations St Mary's you were exceptional at the CCC Swimming Carnival on Monday. We loved how you gave your best, cheered and supported every one of your team mates all day. St Mary's was 2nd overall with only 20 points between first and second.
Some amazing results for the day......Eva W 2nd Free, Yenna W 2nd Free, Elizabeth C 1st Free, Yenna W 2nd Back, Yenna W 2nd BRS, Ollie B 1st Free, Flynn B 2nd Free, Harry B 2nd Free, Harry B 2nd Back, Flynn B 3rd Fly, Harry B 1st Fly, Byron H 3rd Fly, Flynn B 3rd BRS, Archie M 1st BRS, Phoenix W 3rd IM, Flynn B 2nd IM, Phoenix, Harry, Byron and Koby 2nd Relay, Lachlan, Jase, Archie, Flynn 3rd Relay
Good Luck to those who have made it through to Diocesan Swimming at Mingara on Tuesday 14th March
Cinema Under the Stars
Friday 31st March 2023 Gates Open: 5pm Movie Begins: 6.30pm
Ticket Price: $10 per family Tickets are available to purchase now via QKR! PLEASE NOTE: If you bought a ticket to last year’s cancelled cinema night on QKR, this ticket is still valid
What to expect on the night....? A special, family friendly community night… Bring along a picnic dinner, pack a rug or kick back on a bean bag! Gates open early for families to find their friends and a comfortable spot to sit on our grassy school oval. Food caravans will be selling all your favourite treats! Access gates to the event will be via the school car park only (Pandora Pde entry will not be open). This will be an alcohol free event. What movie? Shhh… it's a secret! Our family friendly film won’t be announced until the night.
Mrs Sellars has anticipated a big turn out and will reward the class with the most tickets sold to a Pizza Lunch!
A Spotlight on Kinder
Kinder have enjoyed their first few weeks at Big School!