Dear Parents and Carers,
We are approaching the end of another school year. Teachers are currently writing student reports and preparing for end of year events. Our Year 6 students are experiencing many “this will be the last time I do this” moments as they prepare for their final days at St Joseph’s School.
Last Sunday was the start of Advent. This is a special time in the church calendar for us to prepare for the coming of Jesus and Christmas. It is also a time for us to prepare for next year. Our long transition program, “Little Stars”, is in full swing as the new Reception students gather each Friday in our Community Centre to prepare for starting school. Each week is a new adventure for the students as they begin to understand and experience the life of a school. This preparation is such an important part for a student being in our school the term before they start so they can feel happy and safe, build resilience and make friends. Being prepared can help us begin to feel okay about change and allows us to start organising for the next chapter in our school journey, especially if it is moving on to a new school or to a new class.
All schools are working on their class placements for next year. Placing all our students each year is a process that takes teachers and leadership many discussions over many hours as well as a great deal of thought and consideration. Many factors contribute to the placement including; gender balance, learning abilities, peer friendships, student combinations, class size, social and academic strengths and challenges. When making class placements we always consider the individual child while recognising that each child is also part of a complex process.
With each child at the centre of our process, our goal is to create an optimal learning environment for all students that meets their needs. In a small school, this can create additional complexities and challenges.
We respectfully ask that parents do not request particular teachers for their child as there are far too many factors to be considered when constructing a class for teachers to accommodate such requests. As this takes most of the term to deliberate, we ask that families trust and respect the process, knowing that teachers and leaders are collaborating and discussing each student and looking at what is the best fit for them.
Students do provide teachers with information focussing on their friendship groups, by providing names of students who they value and respect in their current Year level, as well as other students they have worked successfully with throughout the year.
As our class structures allow teachers of the same Year level to work in Professional Learning Teams, students do have the opportunity to mix and get to know other students from classes in the same year level. We encourage and promote diverse social interactions, allowing all students to develop and grow friendships not just in their own home class. This has many benefits and creates a real sense of community.
Class placements will be communicated to families on the final Tuesday of Term 4, as the students will meet their new teacher(s) and classmates at a transition session on this day. Students will receive a letter that afternoon informing them of their class teacher(s), the name of their class and the room number. We trust this will be a very exciting and positive experience for all students as they prepare for another exciting year of learning in 2023. Thank you for your continued support in this matter.
Stage 2 Building Project & Sports Courts
I would like to inform the school community that we are preparing and planning for the start of the Learning Street project at the end of term 1 in 2023. Part of the preparation for the project requires us to relocate the brown transportable building (Italian Room) next to the sand pit so it can be used by a class during the project. The main construction site will be in the bottom yard and this relocation will be happening in the first week of the Christmas break.
We are gradually seeing the final stages of the sports court. This week the chain wire fences are being erected and the remainder of the grass will be laid. Unfortunately, it is looking more likely the court will be completed just before Christmas, which will mean we will be unable to use it until next year.
On a positive note the Adventure Playspace has been extremely well received by everyone, we are very pleased and proud with the outcome and are in the process of planning the official opening and blessing early in 2023.
NOTE: After school play until 3:15pm
Just a reminder to all students and their families, you are very welcome to gather and have a small play after school, however once the second bell goes at 3:15pm we ask that you make your way out of the grounds. At this time, our OSHC students will come out to use this space for their first part of their session. The Adventure Playspace, as well as the Parish Hall have been allocated for use by OSHC only during the morning and afternoon sessions and this whole area becomes part of the care package for OSHC. All areas are required to be registered with the Education Standards Board, which have strict guidelines around the use of space when students are in our care outside of school hours. Thank you for your support.
Recently the new signs for the gates and some of the school buildings have been appearing. We hope these will assist new and current families to navigate through the school grounds. Please note the gate to the staff carpark is for staff use and deliveries, not for families to use (other than in emergencies). We do have around four parking spaces out the front of the school on Magill Road. Please be aware that at 4:30pm Monday to Friday there is no parking on Magill Road as it becomes a bikeway and fines are issued.
Please use the promenade self-closing gates which are opened using the child safety latches.
Christmas Gathering Evening (Tuesday 6th December at 6pm)
We will provide some more information about our Christmas Gathering later this week, including a timetable of events, what to bring and the location of the gathering. Currently it is planned for the oval, however this will depend on the building site and the ability for us to have safe access to the area, please be aware that it could revert back to the middle yard.
I look forward to seeing you at the community gathering next week.