March 24th 2022
- Acknowledgement of Country
- A Note from our Principal
- Carpark Safety
- Pupil Free Day
- School Open Evening
- Breakfast Club
- Walk/Ride to School Day
- Hot off the Prep Press!!
- School Advisory Council
- CASEA program (CAMHS and Schools Early Action)
- Confirmation Term 2
- Assembly - Parent Attendance
- Parents and Friends Meeting
- Positive start in 2022
- West Warrnambool Neighbourhood House
- Warrnambool City Athletics Carnival
- Easter Raffle
- Hot Cross Buns Fundraising Drive
- ANZAC Badges
- Safe Seats Safe Kids - Car seat fittings and checks.
- Second Hand Book Sale - Rotary Club
- Library News
- Footy Tipping
- Parish Contact
- Second Hand Uniforms
- Student Medical Details
- The Prodigal Son
- Upcoming Dates
- School Canteen Roster
- Covid 19 Arrangements
Acknowledgement of Country
The St Pius X Parish School Community acknowledges the Gunditjmara / Marr Nation people who have educated children on these lands for thousands of years.
A Note from our Principal
Another big week at St Pius X. I’d like to thank the staff, children and parents for their support this week and for being patient with Rebecca, Gerard and I as we navigate our new roles.
This week our Yr 5/6 students completed the swimming program at the Splash Factory and I think it’s fair to say that we might have some tired children by the end of the week.
Our annual footy tipping competition kicked off last week, it was great to see so many students and families involved this year. A couple of our tipsters are off to a flying start. Our star tippers are listed further on in the newsletter. Good luck to your team this weekend. Go Lions!
Have a great weekend!
Thanks for a continued focus on safety in our car park. This week we would like to focus on dogs in the car park after school. It is great to see dogs on leads being brought for a walk. However, could parents could be conscious of dogs waiting right at the entrance of the school building and gate? Not all of our children feel confident around dogs and this can create some anxiety. Waiting off the path or slightly back from where waiting children gather would be appreciated.
Pupil Free Day
Thanks again to all families for your assistance and support for our pupil free day last Friday. This enabled all our staff; teachers, LSOs, administration, trainees to be given further training in wellbeing strategies and structures through the ReLATE framework.
Report - Relate Development Day:
On Friday 18th March the school had a pupil free day as the staff were attending a Professional development day run by Ben Sacco from The Mackillop Institute, based around Reframing Learning and Teaching Environments (ReLATE).
Throughout the day we looked into Behavioural Insights and developed a deeper understanding of why a certain behaviour may be occurring and strategies to use which help defuse hostile situations. This is something that we will continue to develop as part of our school environment to create a safe and happy learning environment for all students.
We also looked at Positive Education and the benefits for students, teachers and the wider schooling community of having a school environment that highlights positivity. We were given the opportunity of reflecting on our practice and where positive education can have a stronger presence.
We will continue to develop our understanding and knowledge of wellbeing through The Mackillop Institute to ensure St Pius is a school where the development of the whole child is at the heart of what we teach.
School Open Evening
One of the major deficits we have experienced in the past two years is a lack of opportunities for teachers and parents to come face to face. On Tuesday March 29th, we would like to invite families to visit classrooms with a focus on meeting and speaking with your child’s teacher. This open classroom opportunity will begin at 5.00pm and run through to 6.30pm. We are hoping this time frame will lower the numbers of people in classrooms at any one time. Adults are required to wear masks and must have proof of double vaccination with them.
We are looking forward to seeing you on this evening and urge you to consider attending.
Breakfast Club is back up and running for 2022!
Every Wednesday from 8:15 breakfast will be available in the function room for any students that would like to have some breakfast before the school day starts! Everyone is more than welcome to come along, even if they have already had breakfast at home. It is a great initiative supported by FoodShare who provide fruit, yoghurt, cereal and yummy toast.
Thanks again to our parent volunteers Maddy and Tracey for running the program!
Walk/Ride to School Day
Tomorrow, Friday 25th March is Walk 2 School day!
This day is a way of promoting healthy moves and either walking or riding to school on this day! If you live a long way away that is fine, you can still be involved by getting dropped off a block away from school and walking from there, that still counts! Prizes will be given out on the day for those that have come to school via walking, riding or busing!
Hot off the Prep Press!!
This week we have been learning about our bodies. We were able to label a body with 35 different body parts. Some of the body parts we brainstormed were skull, spine, elbow, shoulder, heart, skin, bellybutton, nipple, fingernails and toes. We learnt lots of scientific words to describe a variety of different body parts. We can’t wait to learn more about how to keep our bodies happy and healthy on our excursion next week.
Just a little reminder about our excursion on Tuesday 29th March. Lots of people have filled out the permission form on PAM but there are still a few who haven’t. We would really appreciate this being done by Friday 25th March. We can’t wait to have a great day together!
READING HELPERS - TERM 2
We are excited about having reading helpers back onsite in Term 2. Thank you to those who have sent their forms back highlighting a preferred day. It’s not too late! Anyone that hasn’t sent their form back and still wishes to help us at the beginning of next term then please do so. We are hoping to have a roster circulated during the last week of this term. Many Thanks!!
School Advisory Council
Thursday March 31st 7.30pm is the Annual General Meeting of our School Advisory Council (SAC). We have a number of members who will finish their tenure at the end of 2022. The SAC is seeking expressions of interest from parents who would like to contribute to this group.
In short, the role of the SAC is to:
- Support the promotion, articulation and strengthening of the school’s vision and mission.
- Provide a stewardship role for the school, assisting with resource management and directional planning.
- Provide advice and support to the Principal and DOBCEL as the governing authority.
- Provide a financial oversight for school management.
The SAC constitution requires us to meet twice a term, usually on the 3rd and 7th Thursday evenings of each term. Agendas are generally circulated about a week prior to meetings. It is intended that meetings be around 90 minutes in length.
There are some places vacant now, with more likely to become vacant at the end of the year. Parents who are interested are asked to contact Anne Kerr in the coming days.
CASEA program (CAMHS and Schools Early Action)
The CASEA program has been designed to assist schools and families to support children with their social, emotional and behavioural development. It has been developed to help children in Foundation to grade 3 to understand and express emotions more effectively and to enhance problem solving and relationship skills. CASEA is a free program and is not compulsory.
The CASEA program will be offered at St Pius X Primary School during Term 2, 2022. The program runs over an 8 week period and consists of a weekly children’s group (1.5 hours), a parent/guardian group (1.5 hours) and teacher consultation.
If you have any questions or would like further information regarding the program please contact: Elli Smith, CASEA Clinician, South West Healthcare CAMHS. Telephone 5561 9100.
If you would like your child to be considered for this program, please complete a consent form, available through the school. (Link below)
Confirmation Term 2
Next term the preparation for the Sacrament of Confirmation will begin in the different communities of the Star of the Sea Parish (Warrnambool, Dennington, Koroit & Port Fairy). The Sacrament of Confirmation is celebrated by children who have been Baptised in the Catholic faith. At St Pius X this is usually children in Yr 2.
A family meeting for the children and parents of St Pius X will be held in the first week of Term 2 on April 28th at 7pm in the St Pius X Church. At this meeting we will be learning a little about the Sacrament and organising groups for preparation.
The celebration of Confirmation will be held on Monday June 6th at 7.00pm.
Families with a child who will be confirmed are asked to register this at the following link:
Families with questions are invited to contact the school office (55622506). Some queries may be redirected to the parish office (55622231)
Assembly - Parent Attendance
Thanks to families who were able to join us for assembly last week. Our fortnightly assembly is now open again to all families, but all adults must show proof of double vaccination and have a mask to wear. These requirements are in line with Government approved operating procedures for schools.
Parents and Friends Meeting
The parents and friends meeting has been rescheduled to Monday the 28th of March. The meeting will begin at 7:30pm and will be held in the staffroom.
Positive start in 2022
The Victorian Government has provided information on the Positive Start in 2022 initiative, which offers students in all low-fee Catholic schools a chance to reconnect with peers and enjoy the kinds of activities that many missed out on over the past two years.
Under this initiative, eligible families have the opportunity to book holiday camps for children free of charge.
To be eligible for free holiday camps, students must meet one or more of the following criteria:
- attend a school that experienced closures of five days or more due to COVID-19 in 2021
- have an approved Camps, Sports and Excursions Fund (CSEF) application for 2022
- have a parent who holds a valid means-tested concession card
- are Indigenous students
- reside in out-of-home care (temporary or permanent)
- are from a refugee background
- are students with a disability.
The letter linked below gives more detailed information regarding this initiative. Families must register their interest by Friday 25 March 2022 to be considered.
West Warrnambool Neighbourhood House
Neighbourhood houses are the heart of our communities. They bring people together to connect, learn and contribute to their local community through social, educational, recreational and support activities. Next Thursday the 31st of March our SRC and the grade five and six students will attend the West Warrnambool House Day celebration at West Warrnambool Primary School.
Warrnambool City Athletics Carnival
The annual Warrnambool City Athletics carnival will be held next Thursday the 31st of March at Brauerander Park. Mr Alexander has selected a group of amazing athletes to represent St Pius X. We wish them all the best of luck. Permission notes can be filled out via PAM.
This annual event is a great fundraiser for our P&F and we ask all families to get behind their efforts.
Any donations of Easter treats (chocolate eggs, chocolate bunnies, lollies etc) would be greatly accepted. These will be placed into Easter hampers and baskets and can be dropped at the school administration office.
Please remember to return your raffle tickets to school as soon as possible. If you have not received a book of tickets or would like another, please contact the office. The draw will take place on the last day of term.
Hot Cross Buns Fundraising Drive
Our Parents and Friends Committee is participating in the Bakers Delight hot cross bun drive. $2.50 from each pack stays with the school! We encourage all families to consider this and place orders at the link below.
Note: Orders close Friday, 1st April
We have ANZAC Badges, pens and keyrings available for sale at the Office.
Prices for the items range from $1.00 up to $5.00.
Safe Seats Safe Kids - Car seat fittings and checks.
On Friday March 25th, the Warrnambool Neighbourhood House will be runinng a free car seat fitting and check service in the St Pius X carpark. We urge all families with children who require a car seat to take up this free offer.
Second Hand Book Sale - Rotary Club
The Rotary Club of Warrnambool physically and financially support numerous international, national and local causes. We are holding a SECOND HAND BOOK SALE, at the Warrnambool Club, at 88 Kepler Street on EASTER SATURDAY, 16th APRIL.
Your contributions would be greatly appreciated, so If you have any old books at home that you are willing to donate to the Rotary Club you can take them to 88 Kepler Street or drop them off at the school office. Thank you in advance for your generosity.
We have lots of books in the library to contact. If you'd like to help, you can pick up a bag of books and contact at the office. We really appreciate your help!
Thanks to all school community members who are involved in our footy tipping competition! Leading the competition this week is Charlea Bear and Shahne7 on 12 points, on 7 point we have the Williamson Family, White’s Family, paddyvdc, Charlie W 2022, Holcombe’s, The Turner’s, Theo Darmanin, Seurens, Scott48337 and Richo800.
Thanks to our generous sponsors:
Bojangles Pizzeria Restaurant
61 Liebig St
Sunday Mass 10.30 @ St Pius X Church. School families are always welcome.
The Parish office can be contacted on 5562 2231
Other information and contact details can be found on the Star of the Sea South West Coast website: https://www.ballarat.catholic.org.au/parish/southwestcoast/
Second Hand Uniforms
Families seeking low cost uniform items are welcome to contact Angela Verspay (mum to Dylan and Finn) who has stock of many donated uniform items. Ph: 0477660119.
Student Medical Details
At the end of last year we asked parents to use the Parent Access Module (PAM) to add and adjust medical details. This information is vital to the wellbeing of our students and we ask parents to prioritise the maintenance of this information.
The Prodigal Son
This parable of Jesus which appears only in Luke’s account, is one of the best known parables and one of the most challenging!
There are many layers to this account. Like “the tax collectors and sinners”(Lk 15:1) we too are seeking to listen to Jesus especially during these weeks of Lent. We are invited to make some time in the coming week to prayerfully re-read this parable and allow its message to seep into our lives. A few points for consideration include:
* Am I too quick to judge others?
*Am I willing to offer forgiveness which reflects the tenderness of God the Father/Mother?
Mar 25 Walk/Ride to School Day TOMORROW
Car seat fittings and checks.
Mar 28 Parents and Friends Meeting 7.30pm
Mar 29 School Open Evening 5pm-6.30pm
Mar 31 SAC AGM 7.30pm
Apr 4 School Photos
Apr 8 Final day of Term 1
Apr 15 Good Friday
Apr 17 Easter Sunday
Apr 25 ANZAC Day
Apr 26 Term 2 begins
School Canteen Roster
Tuesday, 29th March Wednesday 30th March Thursday, 31st March Friday, 1st April Mel Dawson Aliesha Williamson Lauren Johnson Sonja Martin
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.
Student and staff who return a positive RAT but who are asymptomatic, and have not been in contact with a confirmed case are now recommended to get a PCR test. If this subsequent test is negative the student or staff member may return to school.
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.
Returning to School from a Positive Household
Some families may be in a position where their children have isolated as close contacts for seven days as required, but have not become positive, even with current positive cases in the home. These children may be in a position to return to school under updated rules, but only if asymptomatic and with negative RAT results.
If you believe this relates to you, please contact the school for advice.
Parents visiting the school as volunteers (eg. canteen, classroom helper, P&F) must:
- Wear a mask
- Show vaccination status (triple vaccinated or exempt)
- Complete school sign in.
- Carry a visitor pass.
Parents visiting to attend an event must:
- Wear a mask if indoors
- Show vaccination status (double vaccinated or exempt)
- Complete school sign in.
- Carry a visitor pass where applicable.
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)
The opportunity for family members to help with reading and other classroom based activities will begin soon, but the above criteria must be adhered to.
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
We encourage families to conduct rapid tests on children on Monday and Wednesday mornings. Rapid test kits have been distributed to families. Please contact the office if your family has not received the latest round of kits.
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.
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 can now be held, however we are still required to maintain separation of class levels. Parents attending must provide evidence of double vaccination.
Visiting Therapists and Allied Health
Visiting therapists and allied health may continue to visit, but must be triple 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 triple 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
Most offsite activities can go ahead, with safety controls in place and some modification.