February 10th 2022
- Acknowledgement of Country
- A Note from our Principal
- Welcoming Liturgy
- School Captains & Student Representative Council 2022
- Hot Off the Prep Press!
- Parents & Friends Meeting
- After School Parking in Humphreys Street
- Pupil Free Day Tomorrow
- Photo & Media Consent
- Sacramental Dates
- Footy Tipping
- Vinnies Reading Club
- School Uniform Thanks
- Parent Access Module (PAM)
- A Level Playing Field
- COVID 19 Arrangements
- Recycling Initiative
- Term Dates
Acknowledgement of Country
Send your love upon us like the warmth of the Sun.
Help us to gather the nutrients we need from the 'soil' of our school community.
Guide our growth, like seeds from the soil.
A Note from our Principal
Ngata Families & Friends,
This week has given us cause for celebration as we mark the beginning of the school year. Today’s liturgy used the metaphor of the seed growing from the soil into a plant. Each of us is like a seed, waiting for the right conditions to emerge as mature plants. COVID has blocked out the sun and the rain, preventing the best conditions for growth. It is our hope that this year is one of growth for all in our community.
This edition of the newsletter is the first via Schoolzine. We hope this is an improved experience in receiving the newsletter. Eventually all school communication will be changed from the current Skoolbag app to a similar Schoolzine product, but this will be a staggered process over this term.
We remind all families that tomorrow is a pupil free day to allow for medical and child safety training for staff. Alternate care needs to be arranged for children.
Due to COVID restrictions, we have again been unable to hold our Mass to celebrate the beginning of the school year. Instead, a prayer liturgy was shared to our classrooms, with the link being extended to families also. During the liturgy we formally welcomed our new Prep students, as well as the other new students from across our school.
Families who missed the liturgy can still look through it at the link below:
Scenes from our Liturgy:
School Captains & Student Representative Council 2022
This week our Yr 1 - 6 students have been engaged in selecting Student Representative Councillors. Our sennior students were tasked with the extra responsibility of nominating students as our 2022 school captains.
We are delighted to announce that our school captains for 2022 are Tessa Maher and Isaiah Dawson.
The remainder of the SRC will consist of Tia Schrama Wilmott, Jai Keane, Lewis Haberfield, Maya Anderton, Vonal Wijekoon Mudiyanselage, Holly Woodward, Levi Delaney, Charlotte Thompson, Saxon Emeny & Grace White. All of these students will receive a representative badge at the next school assembly.
Hot Off the Prep Press!
- Show and Tell Friday 18th February - bring along something to school that makes you happy!!!!
- Fruit Time - just a reminder for Mums and Dads to send our fruit snacks to school in a small separate container. It helps us to do all our morning jobs quickly.
- Thanks to all the families who have sent along baby and family photos. We have loved sharing them with each other. It’s not too late to do that if you haven’t already.
Look at some of the perfect patterns we have created on our t-shirts!! A pattern is like a code and it repeats over and over again!!
Parents & Friends Meeting
A Parents and Friends meeting will be held on Monday evening at 7.30pm. Due to school restrictions this will be held remotely. The agenda will be around intended events and fundraising for the remainder of this term. New members of this group are very welcome. A link will be shared through the Skoolbag app on Monday.
After School Parking in Humphreys Street
The school has been contacted by a resident of Humphreys St and the Warrnambool City Council with a request for parents not to park up on the nature strip. This is an ideal location to collect children from due to its trees and shade. It also gives these children some independence in using the crossing and walking part of the way. If parents who use this location as a pick up point could please remember to park cars beside the kerb rather than on top of the nature strip it would be greatly appreciated.
Pupil Free Day Tomorrow
Please don't forget our first pupil free day tomorrow. Staff will be engaged in mandated training in first aid and child protection. Families are required to organise alternate care for children.
Dates for future pupil free days across this year are listed below. TheirCare will provide service on these days.
CPR and Mandatory Reporting
Date: February 11th
ReLATE Staff Training
Date: March 18th
Reading Learning & Pedagogy
Prayer, Liturgy & Ritual
Date: September 8th
Reconciliation Action Plan
Photo & Media Consent
A reminder about the note that was sent home last week seeking consent for the use of children's photos in a small number of school contexts, visible to the wider community.
- The school website
- The school app
- Promotional materials
- Newspapers & media
This consent can be amended if needed throughout the year. Please return this consent to the office if this has not been done already.
Please note that Prep students and other new students to the school have already indicated this consent on their enrolment form.
A meeting of the schools within the Star of the Sea Parish was held last week to determine Sacramental dates for 2022. The dates for St Pius X are below:
Confirmation (Baptised Yr 2)
Family Evening: April 28, 7.00pm
Family Program: April 28 - June 3
Celebration: June 6, 7.00pm
Eucharist (Baptised Yr 4)
Family Evening: July 20, 7.00pm
Family Program: July 20 - August 19
Celebration: August 21, 10.30am
No Sacrament of Reconciliation will be held next year. From 2023 Baptised Yr 6s will celebrate this sacrament as part of their final year of primary school.
During the coming AFL men’s season our P&F will again be running another footy tipping competition.
Everyone is invited to join!
The cost of entry is $10 for an individual entry or $20 for a family (multi entry with up to three individual family members). Entry fees need to be paid at the administration office.
Last year we had 50 tippers - it would be great to get to 75 this year!
There will be a fantastic prize for first place, and we would love to hear from any other potential sponsors too.
Online registration will open up in the coming weeks.
Vinnies Reading Club
Our Vinnies reading club will return for 2022 on February 16th. This important initiative is run free of charge by St Vincent de Paul and staffed by volunteers. The programme runs every Wednesday afternoon from 3.30pm to 4.45pm. Any student from Yr 1 - 6 is welcome to take part. An enrolment form is available at the link below or from the school office and must be filled in for all interested families regardless of past participation.
School Uniform Thanks
Thanks to families for attention to uniform elements from last week. We still have a small number of students who don’t have black school shoes as part of their regular school uniform. We ask families to contact the school if assistance is required to ensure full uniform.
Parent Access Module (PAM)
A vital part of school communication is the Parent Access Module (PAM). All families should now have their login details. Please call the administration office if you are having difficulaty with this.
PAM can be accessed at the following link:
or by using the link on the Skoolbag dashboard.
A Level Playing Field
There’s no doubt in my mind that the Australia Day Council are choosing the right people as our Australians of the Year. In years gone by, we applauded sports stars, performers, and sometimes scientists and researchers. These past winners were all deserving and all made us proud to be Australian, but in the last two years in particular, the winners have reflected important concerns in our country and have helped to push forward uncomfortable conversations regarding issues that require change. Grace Tame gave hope to survivors of sexual abuse and exploitation in 2021, where this year we were inspired by Dylan Alcott.
I was shocked to hear Dylan recount his story, especially how he hated himself growing up. His disability was how he was defined to others and to himself. Early on in his life, the focus seemed to be on inability rather than how adjustments could be made to allow for his full participation in society.
In Sunday’s Gospel Jesus preaches the Sermon on the Plain. Notice, this isn’t the one on the mount - everyone is on the level and I think that’s an important note by the Gospel writer. Jesus lists marginalised groups in his society, the poor, the hungry, those who mourn. For each group he suggests a just response. Jesus argued that it is our just response to the inequity that we encounter that is indicative of what he termed as ‘God’s Kingdom’.
Where once, the wheelchair events of the Australian Open were played on outer courts as a separate event, Dylan this year played off for the championship on Rod Laver Arena. I hope this is indicative of a larger change in our society, where adjustments can be made to infrastructure, to processes, to education, to employment that ensure people of all abilities have the scope to reach their full potential.
COVID 19 Arrangements
Managing Suspected or Confirmed Cases
As soon as a student (or staff member) becomes aware of being a suspected case - that is symptomatic (fever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, loss of smell or taste:
- The suspected case is required to leave the school site, or be isolated on-site until they are able to leave.
- The suspected case is required to be tested with a rapid antigen test. A positive test result must be reported to the Department of Health using the RA portal and the school (notification on the VicED COVID tool).
- Positive cases must be isolated for 7 days before returning to school. Another RAT test is not required.
In the event that school receives notification that a staff member or student was infectious while onsite:
- All staff must use a rapid antigen test if they have symptoms.
- All students must use a rapid antigen test if they have symptoms.
- Close contact staff and students will be strongly encouraged to use rapid antigen tests for the following 5 days if they don’t have symptoms.
Where a positive case is recorded from a staff member or student who has been on site, the school community will be notified. Personal information will not be released in this communication.
A close contact is now defined as a person who has spent more than four hours with someone who has COVID 19 inside a house, accommodation or care facility. Students fitting within this definition must access a PCR or RAT test and follow quarantine protocols if the result proves to be positive.
Rapid Antigen Tests
RATs have been supplied to all families for each child. We are encouraging families to test children on Monday and Wednesday mornings. Positive tests are considered confirmed cases.
Please note that students who have been confirmed cases should not complete a RAT for 30 days after a positive test as the result will not be accurate.
- Wear a mask
- Scan QR code.
- Show vaccination status (double vaxxed or exempt)
- Complete school sign in.
- Carry a visitor pass.
Parents who need to briefly speak with teachers, or pick something up from a classroom before or after school, can enter classrooms before 9.00am and after 3.30pm, but must:
- Wear a mask.
- Scan QR code at the building door.
- Keep visit brief (5 minutes)
Face masks for P - 2 students remain optional but are encouraged.
Face masks for Yrs 3 - 6 are required while students are indoors. These masks must be supplied from home and need to be managed by the students themselves.
Students whose physical or mental health will be impacted by wearing a mask may be exempt from this regulation, but we ask parents to contact the school to confirm this. Medical certificates and letters from doctors are not required.
We have listed all students with asthma or known respiratory conditions as exempt. Adults are no longer required to wear masks outdoors.
Masks are required to be worn on buses to and from school also.
Student Illness and Symptoms
Students and staff who are unwell should not attend school.
Students displaying symptoms that are beyond what they normally experience with a known existing condition (ie hayfever) will be sent home.
Assemblies & Liturgies
Special whole school gatherings such as liturgies and assemblies cannot be held for at least 4 weeks. A special effort will be made to continue online assemblies that can be shared with families through the Skoolbag app.
Visiting Therapists and Allied Health
Visiting therapists and allied health may continue to visit, but must be double vaccinated. We have encountered a minority who believe this does not apply to them - they are incorrect.
Our canteen is open Tuesday - Friday for lunch orders and also for small items at second recess.
Parent volunteers must be double vaccinated and follow sign in procedures.
Students will be prompted to sanitise or wash their hands at key times across the day.
We ask that children not use their own hand sanitiser, unless this has been discussed with the school.
The school will continue to be progressively cleaned throughout the day, with our teaching staff ensuring surfaces are wiped down during school hours, complementing the work of our cleaning contractors after hours.
Food sharing will continue to be avoided unless individualised portions can be organised (ie. birthday celebrations).
Camps, Excursions, Interschool Sport
Many offsite school events can still go ahead, but must be assessed carefully for infection risk. These will be looked at on a case by case basis.
As part of a recycling drive, the Warrnambool City Council has provided us with a station which will be used to collect items that can be recycled. These include amongst other things; bread tags, batteries and pens. If you have any of the items listed in the picture below, you are welcome to deposit them in the recycling station which will be sitated in the office.