Principal's Update - 2nd March
As we transition from Summer into Autumn, we are also mindful of entering the Christian season of Lent. Lent is a time of spiritual reflection and renewal, focusing on prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. It is also an opportunity to deepen our relationship with God and prepare our hearts and minds for Easter.
As we enter into Lent, we are also entering the season of Autumn, a time of change and transition in nature. The leaves on the trees are changing colours, and the days are getting shorter as we prepare for the colder months ahead. This season reminds us of the importance of embracing change and letting go of what no longer serves us, just as the trees shed their leaves to prepare for the winter.
As a community, let us use this time of Lent and Autumn to reflect on our blessings and embrace change, trusting that God has a plan for each of us. Let us support one another and be mindful of those who may be struggling during this time.
On Monday, students gathered together to participate in our first Lenten liturgy. The gospel recounted that God tells the apostles that Jesus is his Son and commands them to listen to him. This message is also for us, and God commands us to listen to Jesus, too. Students reflected on what Jesus said and how are we to live out those words. They were also asked to reflect on the actions Jesus calls us to focus on during this Lenten period as we prepare for Easter. You may also choose to take some time to chat with your families as we journey through these 40 days.
Discussion starters -
- Jesus says to walk on the path of peace
- Jesus says to walk on the path of forgiveness
- Jesus says to walk on the path of compassion
- Jesus says to walk on the path of justice
- Jesus says to walk on the path of kindness
- Jesus says to walk on the path of understanding
- Jesus says to walk on the path of love
This coming Labour day long weekend also marks a significant celebration for one of our staff members, Keely Keating as she prepares to wed her fiance, Darren Bruty. We wish Keely and Darren every blessing for their upcoming nuptials and hope their day is filled with love and happiness.
We also congratulate Olivia Hare as she and her partner Isaac announced their recent engagement. We wish them every blessing for their future together.
Wellbeing Update - Whitney Bruty
As you will be aware, this year we have welcomed two key staff members to our Wellbeing team to support our school community. Please see the following message from Whitney...
Hello, my name is Whitney! Some of you may already know me from my years of teaching here at St Columba's. I have recently returned from maternity leave after having my third child, Alfie. This year I'm working within the Wellbeing Team as the Peaceful Kids facilitator to run Peaceful Kids sessions for our students. I'm looking forward to working again with the wonderful children at St Columba's and in particular, helping to support their well-being.
We are excited that our Peaceful Kids sessions will begin in the coming weeks.
Some of you may have heard the children talking about our School Wide Positive Behaviour Blitz’s. Each fortnight our SWPB team meets to discuss how we as a school can positively influence the school environment in positive ways. Our staff and Year 6 Leaders collate data on observations to inform these blitzs. Our students focus on the positive by reinforcing the good things we see. This is not a punitive approach.
The first few weeks of term we focused on how we can respectfully interact with each other by using each other's names, looking at the person speaking to us and using our manners. This was the perfect focus as we set the climate for our communities and discussed the positive attributes of a healthy school culture and community.
The last two weeks we have focused on school uniforms and ensuring we are wearing the appropriate shoes for our allocated classes, combined with the appropriate school socks. A gentle reminder to wear sneakers only on sports days and to also ensure your child is in leather shoes. To clarify, leather shoes include Asics leather shoes that resemble sneakers. Black mesh shoes are not included as part of the non-sports uniform.
Thank you for your support.
School Closure Day - Tuesday 14th March - Staff Professional Learning with Corwin
Staff have continued to participate in sessions with CORWIN International. The work with CORWIN is focused on developing assessment capable students and supporting teachers and students in developing classroom practice that supports this. Our team has been excited by the implementation of learning intentions and success criteria and the development our unique learner profiles. The focus of this upcoming session is on feedback that makes learning visible. We look forward to this day and thank you for your support in enabling the day to happen.
As we move into March, our Year 3 & 5 students begin preparation for our NAPLAN assessments. If your child or yourself has any concerns or questions related to this please don’t hesitate to contact their classroom teacher to discuss this. NAPLAN is a tool that provides a snapshot of student learning in a small number of areas and, along with the school’s internal assessment programs, can provide some insights into how a child is progressing. There are a number of planned changes to the reporting process with NAPLAN this year, and information will be available around this in the coming months for families of students sitting the assessment. The ACARA media release related to this can be accessed here for anyone interested.
If you would prefer that your child does not sit the NAPLAN assessment for any reason, please contact your classroom teacher by Monday 6th, March. They will direct you to a form that is required to be completed next week in preparation for the assessment schedule.
Important Dates for Term One
|Thursday 9th March||SAC Meeting, 3.30pm - 4.30pm|
|Monday 13th March||Labour Day Long Weekend|
|Tuesday 14th March||School Closure Day for Staff Professional Learning - Corwin|
|Wednesday 15th March||Preparation for Camp Meeting, 5.30pm|
|Wednesday 15th - Wednesday 22nd March||NAPLAN|
|Monday 27th - Tuesday 28th March||Year 3/4 Community Camp|
|Wednesday 5th April||Athletics Carnival at Llanberris|
|Thursday 6th April|
Holy Thursday Liturgy
Last Day of Term 1
We thank every one of you for your continued support of our school. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.
Bambi Afford & Shaun Mohr