- Parent Information Evening TONIGHT
- Around the School
- Baby News
- School Advisory Council & Parents and Friends
- Foundation Rest Days
- Foundation (Prep) Enrolment 2019
- Information Evening for Prospective Families (Foundation 2019)
- Parent/Teacher Interviews and PSG meetings
- Next Assembly
- Premiers Active April
- Literacy & Numeracy Tutoring for Indigenous students
- CSEF Reminder
Four weeks (3 for students) have certainly flown by. This time of any year in a school is a hectic and busy one as we manage new timetables, rosters and most importantly our relationships with students. It has been great to be able to get into classrooms over the last two weeks and spend some time with the students and teachers as well as meet with many of our families. One of the common themes in those conversations has been around how calm the start of the year has felt for our families, this is always wonderful to hear, and a credit to the hard work of our staff that has taken place leading into a new year.
On Monday Julie and myself attended a presentation from Dr Debbie Pushor, a Canadian professor specialising in parental engagement in learning. This was a great opportunity for us to reflect on how we involve and engage our parents in the learning processes that take place at our school. We know that as school based educators, whilst we play a significant role in a child’s education, we are just one part of a much bigger educational experience that begins at birth. We also know from a range of meta-analysis’ into educational impacts that the home domain has a larger impact on student learning than the school your child attends, and isn’t far behind the student themselves or the quality of teacher they have.
What is often misunderstood in this area is the difference between parental involvement and parental engagement. Involvement helps create our wonderful school community and the many relationships our families have with one another; we couldn’t function without the many incredible helpers we have throughout the school. It has limited direct impact on a students learning though. What really shifts student outcomes are the attitudes and beliefs presented by families around education, what are the expectations you have (not about cleaning the bathroom) around education for your child? Have you discussed their hopes and aspirations? Most significantly are you aware of what they are learning about and ways you can be a part of this? Throughout this year we will continue to focus on this area and ways in which we can better connect with our parent community in the learning of all students.
Parent Information Evening - TONIGHT
Tonight is one of many opportunities for parents to gain a little more of an insight into what goes on at St Columba’s with our shared BYO dinner and community information sessions. This is a chance to be involved and learn a little about the routines and structures in place in each community, as well as be engaged and discuss some of the learning outcomes currently underway.
Information sessions will take place as follows:
5.30 - 5.55pm Prep LC
6.00 – 6.25pm 1/2 LC
6.30 – 6.55pm 3/4 LC
7.00 – 7.25pm 5/6 LC
These sessions will take place in your child’s Learning Community. Children will be supervised by staff in the school grounds during the Information Sessions.
Around the School
Last week we celebrated Ash Wednesday as part of the St Columba’s Parish, this event marks the beginning of Lent. As part of this mass we were all marked with the sign of the cross, in ashes, these ashes are a symbol recognising us all as followers of Christ and that the Lenten season is a time to reflect and examine the way we live out our faith in the community.
Lent is also a great time for families to come together and share their understanding of forgiveness and giving. Consider how you as a family group may help those in need, look out at the world around you and ways in which you can work to make it a better one.
Last night staff worked with Michelle Hutchison digging deeper into our SMART Spelling program and how we are delivering it in classes. Michelle is an incredible international presenter and all staff walked away with a renewed excitement and confidence around what we are doing. We have also had staff working with the CEOB on the new relationships and sexuality education policy and a number of student school leaders attended a day at Lumen Christi looking at Catholic social justice and the work we do as a school in the community.
The school holidays began with exciting news for the Bruty family with the birth of a baby brother for Evie as Whitney and Shane welcomed Bobby Bruty into the world. Congratulations from all of the families and staff here at St Columba’s.
A big thank you to all our parents who have put their hand up to be a part of the School Advisory Council (SAC) and the Parents & Friends group this year. The SAC has been finalised for this year however if you’re interested in helping out in with the P&F or any of their events please leave your name at the office or get in touch with Tash Bryant.
Foundation Rest Days
Foundation students are required to attend school on Wednesday 15th March due to a short week with the Labour Day long weekend.
Foundation (Prep) Enrolment 2019
Enrolments for Foundation 2019 opened last Monday. Existing families with a child starting school in 2019 are asked to complete an Application Form available from the school office as soon as possible. This will assist us to know how many places we will have available next year for new families. Please check our enrolment policy on the website for more details.
Please note that existing families do not need to complete the online application form on the Catholic Education Office website as in previous years.
Information Evening for Prospective Families (Foundation 2019)
On Thursday March 15th we will be holding an Information Evening for families interested in finding out more about St Columba’s School. This is designed for families with Foundation students starting school in 2019.
Current families are welcome to attend, but are certainly not required to.
Parent /Teacher Interviews and PSG meetings
Parent/Teacher Interviews will be held on Tuesday 20th and Wednesday 21st March from 2.00pm to 5.00pm. Online booking for these interviews will open on Monday 6th March. Information on how to book online will be emailed home to families by Friday 3rd March.
Program Support Group (PSG) meetings will start on Tuesday 13th March. Online bookings for PSG meetings will open Monday 26th February. Online booking information will been emailed to all families requiring a PSG this week. A reminder to those families to please ensure you book a time ASAP.
Please note: Parents attending a PSG do not need to book in for a Parent /Teacher Interview.
This year our school Assemblies will be held in the Hall. Assemblies will be held every second Friday afternoon starting at 2.30pm. At assembly we pray together, share our learning, recognise and affirm achievements and share school news. Assembly normally runs for about 40 minutes.
Our next assembly will be at 2.30pm on Friday 23rd February. This Assembly will be lead by LG4.
We will also begin our Foundation student introductions. This week we will introduce Harry, Emma, Hugo, Jack, Zain, Eve, Penelope and Sophie Ga.
All parents, grandparents and friends are most welcome to attend.
Premiers Active April
The Premier’s Active April is once again on and registrations are now open. This is a great initiative aimed at getting families out and about taking 30 minutes of physical activity per day in April. By registering you gain a number of free passes to the YMCA as well as discounted entry to a number of locations around Victoria.
Literacy & Numeracy Tutoring for indigenous students
The Aboriginal Literacy Foundation is able to provide tutoring for indigenous children on Thursday afternoons from 4-6pm. If this is of interest to your family you can make contact with them by phone on 03 9650 1006 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Family fees and fee assistance
Please see below for full details on the Camp, Sport & Excursion Fund scheme for eligible families. Please see Chris in the office for an application form and bring your current Health Care Card along so we can make a copy of it.