From the Principal
I wrote recently to parents and carers about traffic concerns. There has been some improvement, but there are still alarm-raising manoeuvres happening. I know some schools have their staff ‘police’ pick-up and drop-off; I believe, however, it is parents and carers’ responsibility to behave safely without school staff invigilating.
Secondly, since I wrote, K&D have complained about families using their carpark as a pick-up and drop-off place, with students lining up awaiting pick-up. K&D have quite reasonably expressed their concern for safety of our students. I said I would write to our community to ask them to refrain from using the K&D carpark for anything other than shopping at K&D.
Thirdly, parking inspectors have been taking an increasing interest in the five-minute parking along Brisbane Street. Please, as a community, can we do what is needed to ensure the safety of our children and be respectful to each other and our neighbours. Thanks again to the parents and carers who are doing, and always do, the right thing.
Today is Ash Wednesday. It is the first day of the Season of Lent, observed in the Christian Church all over the world. It marks 40 days until Easter. At ceremonies today, students and staff were marked with the sign of the cross in ashes, created from the palms burnt last year on Holy Thursday, the day before Good Friday. It is an ancient tradition and reminds us that we are made by God, and that we are imperfect, and still loved by God.
Our Catholic tradition focuses on prayer, alms-giving and fasting during the season. As we seem to have been living with bushfires for months now, this symbolism is strong for us; after the fire, new growth emerges. Lent is a time for growth. In our society, many people choose to fast from technology rather than food during this time. Ultimately, though, the point is about growth, rather than self-denial for its own sake.
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Upcoming important dates and excursions
Wednesday 6 – Friday 8 March
- Year 9 Camp.
Thursday 7 March
- Year 7 Retreat, Wellspring (8.30am – 2.30pm).
Friday 8 March
- IPSHA Year 6 Leadership Day, Launceston Grammar.
- Year 10 Senior Study Dinner, Blundstone Arena (6.00pm – 10.00pm).
- Year 8 Retreat, Wellspring (8.30pm – 2.30pm).
Monday 11 March
- Public Holiday, Eight Hours Day.
Tuesday 12 March
- Student Free Day.
Wednesday 13 March
- SSATIS Swimming Carnival, Doone Kennedy Aquatic Centre (9.00am – 3.00pm).
Saturday 16 – Sunday 17 March
- All Schools Rowing Regatta, Lake Barrington (7.00am – 3.00pm).
Monday 18 – Sunday 24 March
- Gifted Awareness Week.
- Catholic Education Week.
Tuesday 19 March
- Drop Everything and Do Maths (Kinder – Year 12).
Wednesday 20 March
- Harmony Day.
Congratulations to the following students:
Brianna McVilly-Callinan (Year 11) who has been selected to attend the Rotary Adventure in Citizenship in Canberra having won the organisation’s Civics for Citizenship essay competition.
We want to hear about your child’s significant achievements, so please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
St Mary's Open Day
The College will be opening its doors on Thursday 28 March for Open Day – this is a great opportunity for families to see a regular day at school.
Come and take a tour, speak with our staff and students and see what we get up to at St Mary’s.
We look forward to welcoming you and your children on Open Day.
NAPLAN commenced in Australian schools in 2008. Each year students in Year 3, 5, 7 and 9 participate in common national tests which assess reading, writing, language conventions (spelling, grammar and punctuation) and numeracy.
The scheduled dates for the tests in 2019 are Tuesday 14 May, Wednesday 15 May, Thursday 17 May and Friday 17 May. If needed, catch up sessions will be planned for Tuesday 21 May.
This year NAPLAN will be completed online. Students have participated in practice tests to familiarise themselves with the testing platform.
The benefits of participating in NAPLAN testing:
- NAPLAN tests the skills that are essential for every child to progress through school and life such as reading, writing, spelling, grammar, punctuation and numeracy
- NAPLAN results provide valuable information on how your child is progressing against national minimum standards of literacy and numeracy skills expected for each year level.
- The NAPLAN tests provide you, as parents, with an individual report that shows your child’s results and a comparison of your child’s results against all other Australian students in the same year level.
- Teachers use the NAPLAN results to determine your child’s areas of strengths, where future focus is required, and how best to provide support or extension activities.
- Teachers use the online NAPLAN toolkit to analyse your child’s results. The toolkit provides detailed information with links to teaching strategies.
- Principals, senior staff and others use NAPLAN results to inform school planning and to allocate resources and support including informing decisions around targeted programs and initiatives for individuals and groups
How can I prepare my daughter for the testing?
The best way you can assist your child is by helping them to feel comfortable about the nature and purpose of the tests and assure them that the tests will give them an opportunity to show what they have learnt in class.
You can also:
- Avoid booking any appointments for your daughters on the testing days.
- Make sure she gets plenty of sleep leading up to and during the testing period.
- Make sure she has a good breakfast on testing days.
- Ensure she comes to school with a fully charged computer/iPad and headphones.
For more information about the national tests, please visit the national NAPLAN website.
Coming together for the future
Year 11 and 12 St Mary’s students recently joined Guilford Young College students to participate in the Plenary Council 2020 at St Mary’s Cathedral. The day saw students working together to brainstorm, and reflect on, what they thought God was asking of Australia. It was a great opportunity to for students to work together, and all their suggestions will be presented to the Council.
Junior School scoots about
Junior School students celebrated healthy living and well-being last week with Stride and Ride, and Nude Food Day. Students got the chance to show off their scooter skills around the College, learnt about the health benefits of active-travel, and how food choices can affect their health and the environment.
Honing the art of rebuttal
Last month, the College’s debating enthusiasts participated in a debating bootcamp at Guilford Young College where they spent the day refining and learning debating skills in anticipation for the season’s commencement on March 13.
The students were actively involved in all aspects of debating and special thanks goes to Isabella Cox and Miranda Guy (both Year 10) for displaying their extraordinary leadership qualities when working closely with the younger members of the group.
Students 'chip away' at projects
St Mary’s student have been busy working on their first projects of the year in Ken Laughlin’s Materials and Design classes.
Year 9 students have been focused on a mirror project which has seen the girls researching shapes and drawing and planning their own designs. The girls learnt how to use scroll saws and clean up edges with table-mounted routers. The mirrors are just awaiting a touch of colourful paint before they can be hung up.
Students in Year 8 have been working on planning and designing tables. Madelin Bannister, pictured, is rounding the edges of her table legs using a smoothing plane. Made of radiata pine, once stable, the legs will be joined to the girl’s table tops.
Poetry performance entertains Year 9 Students
Last month the English department welcomed nationally acclaimed performance-poet Geoff Goodfellow to our Year 9 classes. Mr Goodfellow spoke to students about the art of crafting a poem and read some of his amazing poetry to the students. Mr Goodfellow also took time to speak to the Year 9 students, who loved the poet’s performance.
‘Mr Goodfellow was very entertaining, and his poetry was very unique and interesting,’ Amelia Howell
‘Mr Goodfellow was very intriguing and confident. It was very interesting to hear that poetry can be based on really difficult life problems, not just creative stories,’ Cara Fitzgerald.
Healthy outlook for VET Independent Support students
St Mary’s VET Independent Support students (previously known as VET Nursing students) are getting real-world experience thanks to a new hospital bed donated by Calvary Care.
The de-commissioned hospital bed, secured by St Mary’s teacher Maria Cooper, is the closest thing students can get without going to a hospital.
The new addition will help equip students with the skills required to begin a nursing career.
The Cup goes to...
Year 3 – 6 students recently travelled to the Clarence YMCA to participate in St Mary’s annual Junior School Swimming Carnival.
Shortly after the students arrived, the pool was awash with blue, red, yellow and green – the team spirit was evident right from the start!
This year we introduced a House Spirit shield which was awarded to the house that demonstrated the most spirit, sportsmanship, teamwork, and camaraderie. Presentation were the winners of the inaugural shield – well done to all Presentation house members on a fantastic effort for the entire carnival!
Our four values – respect, responsibility, relationships and, above all, resilience – were well and truly on display. There was a very high participation level with students striving to achieve their best and supporting their peers. Well done to all students!
Final House standings were: College on 397 points, Nagle on 389 points, Manresa on 341 points, Presentation on 317 points.
Congratulations to our Year Group Champions and Runner Up Champions:
Champion: Charlotte Pritchard
Runner Up: Isabella Purves
Champion: Maya Bearman
Runner Up: Meila Bromfield
Champion: Alet Le Grange
Runner Up: Zoe Brooks
Champion: Mia Anderson
Runner Up: Madison Mackey
A very special thank you to the parents and grandparents who helped out on the day: Kylie Anderson, Kristy Broomhall, Rachel Fisher, Irena Marin, Rodney Purves, Mathew Scott, Heath Woods, Glen Woolley and Mel Wiss – your help was invaluable.
Update for Parents and Friends
2019 – 2020 Entertainment Memberships
The P&F is thrilled to be launching the new 2019 – 2020 Entertainment Memberships soon!
For Junior – Year 7 students, the books will be sent home with the youngest student in each family.
Students in Year 8 – 12 will be able to purchase either a hardcopy book from Student Services after April 3, 2018, or can down an app version now, here.
Pre-orders are now open, so please take advantage of bonus Early Bird offers while they last – not only can you enjoy bonus vouchers, but you’ll also receive a $20 Woolworths Online offer and $50 Cellarmasters Online offer!
Celebrating 25 editions, the 2019 – 2020 Entertainment Membership is arguably their best edition yet.
123 Emotional Coaching
123 Magic and Emotion Coaching is based on a number of principles which include too much talk and too much emotion is overwhelming for children, children are not mini adults, emotion coaching (validation of emotion) helps children to manage their emotional reactions to parental boundaries and the ultimate aim is to have a loving and respectful relationship where it is the role of the parent/carer to teach and guide their children. The program uses an easy to learn signalling system and emotion coaching to manage children’s difficult behaviour which in turn helps children to impulse control and self-manage.
Courses will be held on Mondays March 25 – 1 April at 184 Collins St Hobart from 6.00pm – 9.00pm. For more information, please contact Gai on 0409 971 757 or Maxine on 0409 976 225.
After-school Golf day
Rosny Park Golf will be offering a school Golf day for children aged between 7 – 12 on March 28 from 4.00pm. The course is $6 and includes all equipment. If you’d like additional information, please visit their website.
Get into Hockey program
Hockey Tasmania will be holding Get Into Hockey sessions at the Tasmania Hockey Centre (19 Bell St, New Town) on Wednesdays until March 27 between 5.00pm – 6.00pm. The workshops cost $40 and are for children aged between six to 12 years of age. More information can be found here.