Dear Parents & Carers
Now that we are settling into the year, we are asking all parents, including Kindergarten parents, to drop their child off at the bottom gate in the mornings and not to enter the school premises unless it is to go to the Front Office or Uniform Shop. Not only is this due to continuing COVID19 restrictions, but it also develops independence in students.
All students, including Kindergarten students, should now be entering the school unassisted, placing their bag at their classroom area, and proceeding to the concrete assembly area or oval to play until the 8.55am bell. They will then walk back to class where their teacher will meet them and start the day. Staff will be available to assist and support parents and students.
The Community Council has its first meeting for the year next Monday night at 7.00 pm. A Community Council is a governing body made up of parents, staff and Parish members who are responsible for assisting me in providing leadership to the wider school community. The Community Council supports the school and offers advice in these areas.
I ask all parents to consider joining the Community Council!
Parents are reminded that smart watches are treated the same as phones or BYO iPads at school if used inappropriately. Smart watches, fitbits and similar devices with cellular, photographic and film capabilities pose a risk to student wellbeing and safety. When these technologies are misused by students, they can be very disruptive to students’ welfare, socialisation and in some cases cause various levels of harm. If text messages are sent to smart watches, then children are required to leave their smart watch in their school bag. Any messages for students can be received via the Front Office. We want to ensure that students are not being distracted from their learning. As a school, we also want to be able to guide and support students in being able to solve problems with the support of peers and school staff whilst on the premises. As with phones and BYO iPads, these devices will be confiscated and parents contacted if used inappropriately.
WORKING WITH VULNERABLE PEOPLE
ANY PARENT who volunteers to assist in classrooms, with sporting teams, clothing pool, etc MUST HAVE A WORKING WITH VULNERABLE PEOPLE CARD on them at all times. As with your driver’s licence renewal, your photo will be taken at Canberra Connect Office, and a card sent to you within a few weeks. There is no fee for this. Please ensure you renew your card online and when your new card arrives please bring it into the school so it can be photocopied and a copy left at the school. Thank you.
Special thanks to Big W Gungahlin for donating some coathangers to our Uniform Shop! Very much appreciated!
Have a great week
Wednesday marked the beginning of Lent with the celebration of Ash Wednesday. All students participated in a classroom liturgy to mark this special occasion in the church’s calendar. Under the Archbishop’s directive, teachers blessed students with holy water this year instead of the blessed ashes. In his message for Lent 2021, Pope Francis calls on the faithful to “renew our faith, draw from the living waters of hope and receive with open hearts the love of God.”
As we do each year, we will support Caritas by participating in Project Compassion. We are still waiting to receive our school’s supply of Project Compassion boxes. More information will come home with the boxes when they arrive.
We currently have over 40 Year Six families enrolled in the 2021 Confirmation program.
Thank you to all families who attended the Parent-Child Information sessions held on Tuesday. It is essential for you to contact me if you were unable to attend this session but would still like your child to receive the sacrament. The parish team are in the process of finalising numbers and setting dates for the ceremonies.
The Confirmation enrolment masses will be held this weekend (20/21 Feb). Please remember to bring your yellow enrolment form and baptism certificate as well the student prayer card.
Saturday at 5pm and Sunday 6pm
Sunday at 8am and 9.30am
The online registration is now open. Please go to the Holy Spirit Parish website to complete this process as soon as possible.
The $50 Confirmation fee is paid to the school (not the Parish). Payment is available via the QKR App.
If you have any other questions or concerns please email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone the school on 62418640 and leave me a message.
Working with you in faith,
Religious Education Coordinator
This year Holy Spirit is also excited to be a pilot school for a new counselling program.
Marymead’s IMPACT program is school counselling, with a twist! Alongside traditional school counselling, IMPACT will also provide holistic family support and contribute to broader student wellbeing initiatives, customised to meet the needs of the Holy Spirit school community. The flexible service model can include the following components:
- Individual short-term counselling (both alone with children and/or with parents/teachers present);
- Parental support and interventions;
- Family support;
- Supported referral to external services;
- Therapeutic group sessions – Drumbeat, RAGE, Seasons for Growth;
- Teacher in-service and support;
- Participation in case meetings and pastoral care reviews.
Referrals are available from the Front Office or please contact Anna Rawlings, our wellbeing counsellor at email@example.com
Please find attached the Swimming Carnival Permission Note for Years 3-6.
Forms are due back by Friday 19th February.
We will have limited capacity for parent attendance on the day. We will be able to have a small number of parent volunteers on the day, however, we will not be able to have parents spectating due to COVID restrictions in place. We thank you for your understanding and adherence to these restrictions.
The Australian Government Department of Education, Skills and Employment (AGDESE) will collect student residential address for all non-government schools from 15 February. This is part of the AGDESE’s requirement to provide additional information which includes the name and residential address of parents and/or carers ie the persons responsible for students at a school.
Please note that student names will be de-identified, however, parent/guardian names will be included.
Please refer to the attached document that provides further information and please ensure the school has your current residential address if you have moved recently.
To ease traffic congestion in the mornings and afternoons, we ask parents to remain in their car. In the mornings, students should be able to get out of the car by themselves! In the afternoon if using Drive Thru, students should be able to get in the car and do up their own seatbelt. If they can't 'Park & Collect' instead. Thank you.
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