Principal's Update - 16th December
2022 certainly started with a bang with a new wave of COVID hitting families and staff hard, and it appears to be ending with a bang also, with yet another wave of COVID quietly circling us and threatening our Christmas with our loved ones! The highs and lows this year have certainly challenged us yet also reminded us that we belong to a fantastic community! A community of hope, joy and perseverance and integrity.
As the year draws to a close, we take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you for your continued support and encouragement. It has been another significant year of change, and we take this opportunity to thank every staff member for their contributions to our amazing community and wish them all well in their future endeavours. To our leaving staff; Narelle White, Lucy Quinlan, Kelly Stevens, Nathan Jeffrey, Tom Hogan, Jayne Fuller and Sarah Gale. Thank you for your years of dedication and contributions to our St Columba’s Community. You will be truly missed. We also bid farewell to Alison Thorpe, who will begin Long Service Leave at the commencement of 2023 and retire, and the conclusion of her leave in October.
Our thanks must go to our incredible staff for yet another fantastic year. Words cannot express our gratitude or appreciation for their tireless efforts to ensure our students were provided with the most amazing learning opportunities. You were also relentless in providing support and care for the well-being of our students, families and each other; for that we are truly grateful.
Whilst we won’t dwell on the challenges we have all faced and the adversity we have overcome this year, we look forward instead, as faith-filled people, to the Christmas season and the promise of the coming of the Christ Child, into our hearts, our minds and our homes. We focus on the time to spend with family and friends and take a well-deserved break to recharge the batteries, ready for the 2023 school year.
Year 6 Graduation
Congratulations to all students who participated in the Year Six Graduation Ceremony last Tuesday night. It was a wonderful opportunity to celebrate with family and friends and mark this special occasion. Thanks must go to our Staff, in particular, the 5/ 6 Staff for their organisation and ensuring the Graduands were well prepared. Thanks also to our band of parent helpers who willingly gave their time to ensure the students had a night to remember.
Excursions & Camps
This week our communities are fortunate to be able to attend end-of-year excursions to a variety of venues in and around Ballarat. Our Year 5/6 Community has been incredibly blessed to participate in a 3-day camp at Cave Hill Creek near Beaufort. Such wonderful opportunities for our students after two years of having very few opportunities to be out and about. We thank our staff for their enthusiastic support and willingness to provide such opportunities even as their energy levels are waning at the end of the year.
End of Year School Mass/ Christmas Carols
Our students celebrated the end of Year Christmas Mass in St Columba’s Church, followed by Christmas Carols in our schoolyard. A special thank you to Torie and Lucy for organising the Mass. It was a wonderful way for each community to celebrate together for a final time and bring Christmas joy to those who gathered together.
It is with much sadness that we bid farewell to a number of families from our St Columba’s School Community and acknowledge their contributions over the years. We thank them for their commitment to Catholic Education over the years and wish them every blessing for their futures.
We farewell the following families; Askwith, Baldwin, Barun, Brennan, Bridges, Clark Family (Lilli) Down, Duffy, Lawlor, Milardovic, O’Bryan, O’Gorman, Romeril, Ryan, Stewart, Svanosio Warland Family (Harry), Watt and Weyers.
End of Year Reports to Parents
Your child’s school report will be available for download from 12pm today via PAM (Parent Access Module). These reports represent your child’s achievements to the end of this current year. Thank you to our teachers and band of proofreaders for supporting this process.
IMPORTANT - PAM upgrade
Over the Christmas holidays your PAM account will be updated to provide better security and allow for further functionality. This change will involve moving to a PAM account per parent rather than an account per family.
To help us prepare for this change, it is important that you update/reconfirm your families email addresses via the link here as soon as possible.
During the week of the 16th of January, 2023, your current PAM account will cease to function. New PAM accounts will then be created by the school in Term 1, and you will receive an email asking you to create new credentials for a new PAM account.
This will be as simple as:
- clicking on the link provided in the email
- and following the prompts to create a new password for your new account.
* Your username will be your email address *
Your PAM interface will not look any different, but you may receive an account per parent if you previously shared an account with your spouse.
2023 Revision of Student Medical Needs
We encourage all families to take some time over the holiday break to ensure their child/ren’s medical needs are updated. If your Child suffers from Asthma, Anaphylaxis or any other medical condition, please ensure you see your Family Doctor over the break to request an updated medical plan. Please ensure you provide this to the Administration Staff at the commencement of the year. Thank you for supporting this important process.
Beginning of Year Dates for 2023
First Day back for Staff - Friday, 27th January
First Day back for Students - Wednesday, 1st February
2023 Calendar Dates
|Friday 27th January||Staff Return|
|Monday 30th January|
Student Free Day - Staff PD
|Tuesday 31st January|
Student Free Day - Staff PD
|Wednesday 1st February|
All Students Return
|Wednesday 5th April|
School Athletics Day
|Thursday 6th April|
Last Day Term One
|Monday 24th April|
First Day Term Two
|Friday 30th June||Last Day of Term Two|
|Monday 10th July||First Day Term Three|
|Friday 15th September||Last Day of Term Three|
|Monday 2nd October||First Day Term Four|
|Monday 18th December||Student Finish|
|Wednesday 20th December||Staff Finish|
|School Closure Days for 2023||Will be notified once confirmed|
Wishing you all every blessing for the Christmas Season. Enjoy a well-deserved break with loved ones and stay safe over the holiday period.
See you all in 2023!
Bambi Afford & Shaun Mohr