Newsletter 3rd August 2023
Dear parents and carers,
Welcome to our new look newsletter, published every odd week of term. This newsletter is the product of our research after parent feedback in the 2023 Qualtrics Survey indicated that you would like a more user-friendly newsletter. In this Schoolzine format you can click straight to the pages you would like to read, eliminating the need to scroll through numerous others. Your feedback is most welcome as we work to refine this newsletter each fortnight, to enhance our communication channels with you.
Wellbeing is very much on our minds as we journey into Term Three. You are probably aware of the tragic circumstances around the passing of little Decklan Haywood (related to some of our families at St Mary's), after a choking incident while at school led to a cardiac arrest and eventually the turning off of his life support. I believe there is hardly a greater grief than losing a child. Our hearts go out to the family and the community of Glenroi Public School. We sent flowers to them today on behalf of St Mary's and the children prayed for Decklan in classrooms.
I also want to inform you that St Mary's is a trial school for a new wellbeing product for schools called the VIBE survey, designed to support your child's wellbeing in real time. Here is a letter of information for your interest.
"We are thrilled to announce an exciting addition to our school's support system—the brand new VIBE (Valuable Insights, Beliefs and Experiences) Student Survey! Designed with your child’s wellbeing in mind, this innovative survey aims to track and support each child’s emotional health in real time. Through a weekly check in, students will have the opportunity to share how they’re feeling and ask for help when they need it, ensuring they have the support they deserve throughout their academic journey.
At the heart of this survey is a simple yet crucial question: "How are you feeling today?" This question provides a powerful starting point for understanding each child’s emotional state and serves as a gateway to proactive support. Each week, students will be asked five randomised evidence based questions, encouraging them to reflect on different aspects of their life and emotions.
Why is this survey so important? Here are just a few reasons:
Real-Time Support: By participating in the VIBE Student Survey, students have a dedicated space to express how they’re truly feeling. This opens up avenues for our caring staff to step in and provide assistance whenever necessary. Whether they’re experiencing academic stress, personal challenges, or simply need someone to talk to, we're here for them.
Weekly Check Ins: We want to ensure that your child’s wellbeing matters are a top priority. Through the weekly check-ins, we can monitor any changes in students' emotional state, identify potential concerns, and offer timely support. Student responses will be treated with the utmost confidentiality, enabling us to provide personalised assistance tailored to their unique needs.
Evidence Based Approach: The VIBE Student Survey has been carefully crafted using evidence based techniques to ensure its effectiveness. The randomised nature of the questions helps cover a wide range of emotional experiences and encourages self reflection. Rest assured that the survey is designed to be a helpful tool on each child’s path to emotional wellbeing.
Empowerment and Agency: Students voice matters, and the VIBE Student Survey amplifies it. By participating, students are taking an active role in shaping the support systems that directly impact their educational experience. Student feedback will be invaluable in helping us better understand their needs and make informed decisions regarding student wellness initiatives.
Student emotional wellbeing is a priority for us. If a child doesn't feel loved, safe and supported it is difficult to engage in learning. The VIBE Student Survey is just one of the ways we're working towards providing students with the support they deserve. We believe that by nurturing the emotional health of our students, they will be better equipped to thrive academically and personally.
Keep an eye out for more details in future newsletters. We are committed to creating an environment where the wellbeing of our students is championed and where seeking help is encouraged.
Wishing you a wonderful weekend when it arrives.
On Wednesday 26th July St Mary’s school community warmly welcomed our grandparents to share in the celebration of their kindness, love and wisdom. We invited families to join us in prayer and visit our classrooms to share in students' love of learning.
For all grandparents: that their presence be a sign of God's love for their grandchildren and that their memories help younger generations to connect with their origins.
For grandparents: may they continue to pass on to future generations their faith and wisdom. We pray to the Lord.
For grandparents raising children: that their selfless love and commitment be recognised and supported by those around them. We pray to the Lord.
For grandparents: that they may be blessed in the affection and gratitude of their grandchildren. May they always encounter respect and love. We pray to the Lord.
For children who have no grandparents: that they may find encouragement in the friendship and support of faith-filled seniors. We pray to the Lord.
For grandparents who have died: that their families will be consoled in their loss of one so precious to them. We pray to the Lord.
Christian Leadership Awards
At St Mary's, we have been teaching from the new NSW Mathematics syllabus this year. The images below outline the syllabus organisation.
Organisation of Mathematics K-6
Mathematics K–6 outcomes and their related content are organised in three focus areas:
- Number and algebra
- Measurement and space
- Statistics and probability
The Working mathematically processes present in the Mathematics K–10 syllabus are:
- understanding and fluency
- problem solving.
The Working mathematically outcome describes the thinking and doing of mathematics. When students are Working mathematically it is important to help them to reflect on how they have used their thinking to solve problems.
A student develops understanding and fluency in mathematics through:
- exploring and connecting mathematical concepts
- choosing and applying mathematical techniques to solve problems
- communicating their thinking and reasoning coherently and clearly.
At St Mary's, our students are engaged in rich and varied opportunities to develop mathematical thinking through playing games, using hands-on materials, explaining their thinking, sharing strategies, reasoning and solving problems.
Class One Gold having fun at Gymnastics this week
SPORTS UNIFORM Term 3 (any changes to the uniform days will be sent out in compass)
Kindergarten - Monday & Friday
Year One - Monday
Year Two - Tuesday
Year Three - Wednesday
Year Four - Thursday
Year Five - Tuesday
Year Six - Thursday
Clancy Simmons travelled to Port Macquarie last week to play in the Polding team at the PSSA Netball Championships. She played in 13 games with Polding finishing the competition in 9th place. Clancy received the Best and Fairest award for the Polding team. This is an outstanding achievement and we are very proud of her. Congratulations Clancy!
Southern region Athletics Carnival
Last Thursday St Mary’s travelled to Canowindra for the 2023 Southern Region Athletics Carnival. Whilst the clouds showed signs of ruining the day, lucky for us as a whole we were well equipped to participate to our highest ability. St Mary’s students showed exceptional leadership, dedication and commitment whilst competing. This was a massive event for our school with over 70 students attending so thankyou to all the behind the scenes work of those involved.
Several athletes were lucky enough to be awarded individual awards and have now progressed to the next stage that will be held in Dubbo in several weeks. Congratulations to Ivy Scovell Wynne, Ethan Wright, Leo Clarke, Wade Kennewell and Elwyn Evans for being awarded runner up age champions and also Clancy Simmons and Bonnie Wright for winning overall champions in their respective age groups. All of this success allowed St Mary’s to be awarded School champion for the event which was a massive achievement for everyone involved.
I would like to say a big thankyou to Simone Thompson and Nicole Evans for volunteering their time, this was a massive help to our school and we can’t show enough appreciation. Congratulations to all students who competed and goodluck to those moving on.
Scholastic book orders are due in LOOP by 4th August 2023.
(no Late orders or cash can be accepted )
School Wide Positive Behaviour for Learning (SPB4L)-SCHOOL UNIVERSALS
As learners at St Mary's we are expected to:
BE SAFE BE RESPECTFUL BE RESPONSIBLE
The aim of SPB4L at St Mary's, is to actively teach and model positive behavioral expectations through consistent, reasonable, and proactive strategies that will foster positive relationships with students, staff, and parents.
BE SAFE ❖ We will keep our hands and feet to ourselves ❖ We will follow the rules of the game
BE RESPECTFUL ❖ We will use kind words ❖ We will follow the teacher directions
BE RESPONSIBLE ❖ We will include others and play fairly ❖ We will engage in our learning