Dear parents and carers,
This week, I have commenced the Prep 2024 enrolment interviews. These interviews provide an excellent opportunity for me to meet children who are preparing to embark on their primary school journey. It also allows us to establish a strong foundation for positive relationships between home and school, both for current parents and those who are new to our community.
If you have a child who is due to start Prep next year, I kindly request that you ensure you have submitted an application and booked an enrolment interview. It's important to note that we currently have more applications than available positions. Therefore, the allocation of spots will be conducted through a selection process. First-round offers will be sent via email at the end of this term.
You may be aware of the tragic incident that took place last week at Sunshine Station involving students from Caroline Chisholm Catholic College. It is possible that some families in our community have been affected by this terrible tragedy. In order to support those in need during this difficult time, Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools (MACS), in collaboration with the Department of Education, is actively assisting the College to ensure a safe environment for all students and to maintain a high standard of teaching and learning.
We would like to remind you that there are community-based services available to provide support:
1. Kids Helpline phone: 1800 55 1800 https://kidshelpline.com.au/
2. Lifeline phone: 13 11 14 https://www.lifeline.org.au/
Please be assured that the CCCC community and all those affected remain in our thoughts and prayers. We are committed to offering any assistance necessary during this challenging period.
Please note the upcoming CCCC Parent Information sessions, scheduled for 6th June, have currently been postponed and will be rescheduled for Term 3. Any family that had registered for the event will be notified directly. The College thanks you for your understanding and continued support.
We have some exciting events that are happening for our community. Last week the Leadership Team continued their work with Geoffrey Still. We explored our preferred style using the DiSC model (Dominance, influence, Steadiness, Conscientiousness). DiSC provides a basis for:
- expanding self awareness;
- enhancing personal effectiveness;
- exploring individual differences and how these interact with and impact others in work environments in order to appreciate and leverage diversity.
We look forward to continuing this work throughout the year to ensure we are a cohesive, inspirational and effective leadership team working to enhance our community by living out our horizon and image of the child.
Tomorrow we welcome of group of Deputy Principals from our local network to St John's for a school tour and to learn more about the work with are currently doing in the space of Berry Street Education Model, in particular 'Getting Ready for Learning' and how this is enhanced by the work of The Resilience Project. Thank you to Karen and Lauren for leading this opportunity so that we can share our learning and hear feedback from trusted colleagues across our Catholic system.
I am thrilled to share some wonderful news regarding our staffing team. It is my great pleasure to announce that Trish Wheeler will be joining us as a new member of staff starting next week. Trish has graciously accepted the recently advertised position, which will enable us to introduce additional intervention programs here at St. John's. With her extensive experience and knowledge in the fields of Literacy and Numeracy, we are confident that Trish will contribute greatly to our school community. Please join me in warmly welcoming her on Tuesday.
I am also pleased to announce the return of Melissa Caruana. After being on parental leave for the past 12 months, Melissa will be rejoining our team and will be working on Fridays in the 5/6 Hub starting from Term 3. We look forward to having her back and benefiting from her expertise.
I would also like to inform you that Amanda Prattico, an educator in the 5/6 Hub, has taken personal leave until the end of this term. During this time, let us keep Amanda in our thoughts and prayers, wishing her well as she takes this break. We eagerly anticipate her return at the beginning of Term 3.
Lastly, I would like to update you on the interview process to find a suitable replacement for Jayka's position. We have recently concluded the interviews, and I am excited to reveal the successful applicant in our next newsletter. Stay tuned for the upcoming announcement!
Last week, I reached out to the council and requested their assistance in improving our management of end-of-the-day pick up, following a complaint from a concerned member of the public to our school staff. Yesterday, an employee from the council visited our premises and observed the traffic flow between 2:45 pm and 3:30 pm. We are pleased to report that she was highly impressed with the smooth movement of cars during our back yard pick up.
However, the council representative did note that a few cars were double-parked along Eleanor Street before the children were dismissed at 3:10 pm. While we acknowledge this observation, we would like to express our gratitude to all the drivers who diligently collect their children every afternoon, ensuring the safety of everyone involved and adhering to our requests.
As a staff, we firmly believe that our current system is effective most of the time and will continue to prioritise a safe and efficient end-of-the-day pick up. We value the cooperation and support of our community in maintaining a safe environment for our children.
This term, we have observed a slight increase in instances of rough behaviour, leading to physical and minor injuries. Our primary goal at St. John's is to foster a school environment where every child feels safe. Such behaviours significantly affect these feelings, particularly when they are performed with intent. While we understand that accidents can occur during play, we strive to eliminate acts where a child lashes out in anger, seeks revenge, or exhibits intentional harm.
At St. John's, we firmly believe that teaching appropriate behaviour is as crucial as imparting skills such as reading, writing, or problem-solving. We are committed to working with children to help them manage impulsivity and find healthy ways to regulate their emotions that do not pose a risk of harm to others. In the event that a child displays such behaviours, we may allocate a portion of their break time to engage in a discussion with a school leader. During this conversation, we aim to analyse the situation, determine the necessary steps to be taken, and guide them in making better choices in the future.
Our educators will continue to collaborate with families to provide support and make any necessary adjustments to address these behaviour patterns effectively. We also encourage families to reach out to us if they have any concerns so that we can ensure the safety and well-being of all children at school, at all times.
Towards the end of this term, every child's family will receive their Semester 1 Student Report. Following that, we will provide a booking link for parents to select a suitable day and time for Learning Conversations, during which they can discuss their child's growth and achievements so far this year. The Learning Conversations are scheduled to take place during Week 1 of Term 3.
For families whose children require a PSG (Personalised Support Group) meeting, Shelly will be in contact with you to arrange a booking. These PSG meetings will be held during Week 8 and 9 and will continue into Week 1 of the next term. If your child has a PSG meeting scheduled, there is no need to book a separate Learning Conversation, as this will be incorporated within the PSG meeting.
In addition, children in Years 3-6 will be invited to be part of the PSG meetings and Learning Conversations, enabling them to share their learning from Semester 1.
Don't forget that next Friday, 2 June, is our "Wear Yellow for Children's Ground" day as part of Reconciliation Week. The theme for 2023 is ‘Be a Voice for Generations’, encouraging all Australians to be a voice for reconciliation in tangible ways in our everyday lives – where we live, work and socialise. The dates for National Reconciliation Week, 27 May and 3 June, mark two significant milestones in the reconciliation journey – the successful 1967 referendum and the High Court Mabo decision, respectively. Please click on the link for a Aboriginal Reflection Prayer "Tracks on Sacred Ground" that is an Aboriginal voice echoed by a christian voice.