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Principal News Term 2, Week 4

Welcome to Week Four of Term Two, and the lovely Autumn weather continues – let’s hope for a continued “freshening up” of everything as we await some more showers next week! Today began with National Walk to School Safely Day, and hasn’t it been a well supported and positive experience for us all this morning?  The staff tackled a beautiful walk in Hyde Park yesterday, as a part of our commitment to Wellness Wednesday Staff Meetings- I’m sure we’ll all benefit from this outside and active time!

Now in its 22nd year, National Walk Safely to School Day (WSTSD) is an annual event when all Primary School children will be encouraged to walk and commute safely to school. It is a Community Event seeking to promote Road Safety, Health, Public Transport and the Environment.

All information can found at:  walk.com.au

The event was held throughout Australia today, Friday 14 May 2021

The objectives of WSTSD are:

  • To encourage parents and carers to walk to school with primary school age children and reinforce safe pedestrian behaviour.
  • To promote the health benefits of walking and help create regular walking habits at an early age.
  • To ensure that children up to 10 years old hold an adult’s hand when crossing the road.
  • To help children develop the vital road-crossing skills they will need as they become mature pedestrians.
  • To reduce the car dependency habits that are being created at an early age and which will be difficult to change as children become adults.
  • To promote the use of Public Transport.
  • To reduce the level of air pollution created by motor vehicles.
  • To reduce the level of traffic congestion.

WSTSD is an opportunity for parents and carers of Primary School aged children to promote safe pedestrian behaviour. It aims to inform parents and carers that they need to closely supervise their young children, particularly those under 10 years of age, in all road environments, holding hands when near or crossing the road.

WSTSD promotes and informs parents, carers, teachers and children of the significant physical, mental and social health benefits which can be achieved through regular walking.

Sacred Heart is positioned in such a picturesque setting, and the chance to stroll to school together and enjoy our beautiful surrounds, was taken up by many of our families today and will hopefully continue in coming days, before winter weather sets in!

What an absolutely delightful celebration we all enjoyed last Friday morning, courtesy of our hard working and very adept Dads! The morning saw our Dads busily providing beautiful heart shaped iced biscuits to all classes, ensuring that despite a different approach to community events at this time, our very special Mothers were recognised and acknowledged by their families. Congratulations to all in our School Community- a fitting tribute to, and celebration of Mothers at Sacred Heart!

The coming wintery showers and cold weather brings a reminder about the need to stay warm at school- red jumpers and tracksuit tops are not optional items, and must accompany all children to school each day. The Sacred Heart Winter jacket is the only extra layer of warmth that is permitted for outdoor wear at school. Orders for these can be placed through the School Office. Please remember that beanies, gloves and scarves are not uniform items.

Our boys and girls continue to look smart and well groomed in their Winter Uniform. As always, the first week of a new term sees leniency extended to all, as time is sometimes needed to access correct winter items from our Uniform Shop Co-ordinator directly.

As it is now the end of Week Four, parents are asked to remember that the Uniform Shop no longer operates here at the school, but items that are needed must be ordered and collected via the Co-ordinator directly:- Mrs Vilma Spence of Prefect Uniforms in Maylands – Phone 9271 4479 .

In earlier editions of the School Newsletter, I wrote reminding all parents of their commitment to adhering to School Policy. This commitment is formalised as part of the enrolment process at Sacred Heart.

“It has been very pleasing to see many of our boys and girls wearing their School and Sports uniforms with pride in this early part of the term. Students are expected to be correctly attired in full school uniform at school, and whilst travelling to and from school. Uniforms must be clean, well pressed and in good condition, and school shoes are expected to be polished.  Our founding Sisters were determined to provide a school uniform, as this instils a sense of pride in boys and girls, fosters equality, and ensures our students are readily identifiable as belonging to Sacred Heart.

Unfortunately, it appears that a significant number of families have opted to provide their children with incorrect black school shoes or brown school sandals. The school’s Uniform Policy (Uniform Policy) is very clear about all students’ school shoes being black leather lace ups, and not buckle and velcro styles, and sandals are to be school sandals, and not tan fashion styles. Parents are reminded to adhere to the School’s policy. If incorrect items have been purchased, these will need to be replaced with the correct items- thus ensuring fairness to all.

In the event that a medical condition may dictate any variation to any of the school uniform items, parents are asked to schedule an appointment with the School Principal, as a matter of courtesy and urgency, to discuss this situation.  Parents are asked to provide any supporting documentation at such a meeting.” 

Thank you to the parents who have responded positively to reminders about ensuring children are wearing their correct uniform items. Please familiarise yourself with the required details regarding uniform items and necessary grooming details. In the event of an inability to provide a correct item, it is necessary for parents to communicate directly with me and your class teacher, outlining an explanation and the expected time to rectify the situation, or alternatively, a request for pastoral assistance to provide the necessary items.

Learning

(Learning from our experiences)

In coming weeks, we will celebrate the commencement of National Reconciliation Week, with very poignant Sorry Day activities, stories, songs and prayers being celebrated in our Hall. Our students have been enlightened about the plight of our Aboriginal brothers and sisters, (The Stolen Generation) and their past suffering, as a result of government policies of the time that saw children forcibly removed from their parents and families. Thank you to our staff for co-ordinating these activities within our school.

I would like to clarify some questions surrounding our school’s starting and finishing times – classrooms are opened and class teachers are in attendance from 8.30am, with scheduled classes commencing promptly at 8.40am. This open classroom time in the morning is to ensure children are settled, unpacked and able to be well organised for their day’s learning. We ask as a school, for parents to assist children to begin a productive day of learning, by arriving at school punctually. Classroom assistance with oral reading and the completion of settling tasks is always appreciated. Teachers however, are not generally available at these times for in depth conversations and “mini interviews”.   Parents are asked to ensure a time is booked for these meetings other than during mornings before classes, after making contact with Class Teachers.

In addition, the school day concludes at 3.00pm, and children are to be collected promptly via Harold St, or the Drive Through zone on Mary St. The school’s Oval and playgrounds are not to be accessed by students or younger siblings, at the conclusion of the school day.  With the new apartment building on the corner of Beaufort St and past Harold St, parents may be tempted to use the laneways into Mary St for access – I ask for extreme caution in any of the traffic areas near the school, at drop off and pick up times, as many of our children are making their way along footpaths on foot or scooters and bikes- please remain vigilant, as children can be easily distracted.

This week has seen the 2021 NAPLAN assessments being conducted. The nationwide online delivery of the tests this year, has been relatively smooth. Fortunately, here at Sacred Heart, our students experienced very little to no issues within the format, or the connectivity problems that may have plagued others in our state. I thank parents for their efforts to ensure the children have been well rested, nourished and prepared for the tests. These conditions will always produce the best results, and when children are supported and encouraged to do their best, but not pressured or made to feel anxious, everyone benefits.

Our staff have invested heavily in the analysis of student data during their Professional Learning Community meetings, and were also involved in a Data Hub workshop on Wednesday of this week, following a full day of classroom instruction. I acknowledge their willingness to embrace after school gatherings such as these, and their expertise in formulating learning plans is to be commended.

Engagement

(The promotion of positive relationships with our students/staff/parents)

The Parents and Friends Association is a hard working body within our School, and both their fundraising, and community building and celebrating efforts, are planned to benefit all our children and their families.  I do hope that our Class Reps are able to reach out and connect with parents at this time, and keep everyone informed about the year’s planned events.

Our obligations as a school, and our “core business,” is a commitment to individualised learning, acknowledging each child’s uniqueness.

During coming weeks, I will enjoy the real pleasure of meeting with many parents to review Curriculum Adjustment Plans (CAPs) and Individual Education Plans (IEPs) – this opportunity for the school and parents to communicate and plan for children’s learning needs is a very necessary part of our “business” and I am very grateful for the time and efforts of parents and teachers in preparing for these meetings- it is truly one of the most enjoyable facets of my role as a school leader to experience first hand, the desires and plans of parents and teachers, for the children in our care. Teachers are able to make professional, informed and data informed judgements about your children’s learning needs, and with support when undertaking their learning, your children will experience a sense of success and empowerment.

Throughout their schooling, children will need to experience work that is challenging, and must learn to approach all tasks with a positive outlook, for without challenge and intervention, we invite mediocrity and miss wonderful opportunities.

Accountability

(Taking responsibility for the quality of our work)

Sacred Heart Primary School will continue to offer a Pre Kindy (Three Year old) Class, and Kindergarten (Four Year old ) Class in 2022. In coming weeks, we continue with the 2022 Pre Kindergarten and 2022 Kindergarten Enrolment Interviews.

Three-year-old and Four-year-old education programs operate at schools as part of an education course. Catholic Pre Kindergarten and Kindergarten programmes provide rich learning environments that cater for children’s development across the physical, cognitive, language, social, emotional and spiritual domains. Learning occurs through planned and spontaneous play experiences that are based on the strengths, interests and needs of each child. Each child participating in our programmes in their Catholic school, is encouraged to develop a positive self-image of themselves and others as they begin to live the gospel message.

Parents of siblings, and those in the wider Parish community who are seeking a position in either of these classes for 2022, are encouraged to contact the School Office and submit their downloadable Enrolment Forms. Places are strictly limited to twenty students for our “Little Hearts” Pre Kindy Class, and thirty students in Kindergarten.

In prior years, our school’s budget has enabled the following to have been achieved as part of refurbishments, maintenances and capital work:-

  • Upgrades to the Terraced Garden/Play areas- roofing, limestone beds and over sized chess / draughts sets, together with the Biblical Garden plantings
  • External roofing maintenance to the main and Early Childhood Education building
  • Toilets in the Junior blocks upgraded to meet standards, and to include an adult facility for staff
  • New cabinetry to wet areas in junior classrooms, and a shared kitchen preparation space between Pre Primary and Kindergarten
  • New carpets to some classes and vinyl/ strip flooring in Junior areas
  • New flooring and carpet to the Science Room
  • Hall AV Equipment upgrade
  • Internal painting to some classrooms
  • Staff Room and Admin area / offices interior painting and carpets including stairs
  • Glazing to some classroom entrance doors for visibility
  • Staffing areas- new kitchen cabinetry/ floorcoverings to staff room
  • Glassed in withdrawal spaces- upstairs verandahs
  • Flat screens for Apple TVs in classrooms to replace aged Interactive White Boards
  • Heritage Stained Glass Main Entrance door repaired
  • Limestone Paving in front of early childhood area

These items all contribute positively to the children’s learning experiences and conditions.  In budgeting for any expenditure within a Catholic school, School Fees contribute to projected planned income.

The majority of our families have completed their obligations to nominate their payment plan for their 2021 School Fees, and I thank them for their commitments and also, their recent payments towards these School and Tuition Fees.  Reminders have been communicated to those families who had not completed these plans.

Fee collection is a very necessary focus for the School Board, and formal collection processes will commence, in the event of failure to make contact with the School Principal to discuss any variations to fee structures, or any circumstances that have the potential to impact on your family’s obligation to meet their outstanding 2021, and or any overdue School Fees.

Discipleship

(Living out the teachings of Jesus)

This term, our Sacred Heart children in Year Four, will be preparing to celebrate that most special of sacraments, the Eucharist, on Sunday 20th June, at the special time of 4.00pm.

On Tuesday 1st June at 6.30pm, the compulsory step in the preparations for First Communion, the  Eucharist Parent and Child Workshop will be conducted in the School Hall.

Our Eucharist candidates will participate in their Sacramental Retreat, on Thursday 10th June here at school, when they prepare bread and a special liturgy, and enjoy many exciting activities that make this most special time, memorable for them.

Father Mark has also planned an additional celebration of the Sacrament of First Eucharist for those catholic students who do not attend Sacred Heart. Details of this and the after school preparation classes can be obtained from the Sacred Heart parish secretary, Mrs Rosalia Carbone 9328 3433.

In closing, can I ask of everyone, special prayers for those in need from our Sacred Heart Community,

I thank everyone for their continued efforts to contribute to all that is Sacred Heart! When we combine our strengths and talents, we are able to provide a wonderful education experience for our boys and girls, and build a sense of community for all families and staff.

I look forward to sharing even more positive experiences for all, over the remaining weeks of this term, and ask that you welcome our new families who will be joining our school over the coming weeks.

Many thanks and God Bless

Mrs Tanya McGuire
Principal

 

Sacred Heart Primary School

Highgate

40 Mary Street, Highgate WA 6003
(08) 9328 8817
admin@shpsh.wa.edu.au