Dear St John the Apostle families,
Students have been very pleased to go outside more often this week as it finally began to feel like the onset of summer.
As December begins, students are feeling a little fatigued by the cohort based COVID-safe strategies we've had in place since returning from lockdown. I spoke with our older students to encourage them to keep going I reminded them that as we get closer to Christmas our efforts will ensure that we can all leave school on the last day healthy and well and enjoy it with family and friends.
Thank you everyone for continuing to work together for our whole community. Our actions not only keep ourselves healthy and well but also each other.
School Fees 2022
Our School Fee Schedule for 2022 can be found below and on our school website.
Careful consideration has been taken in reviewing the fees for 2022 to continue to support our school's needs while keeping increases manageable and fair for families in the current economic environment. The fees have been adjusted to a maximum of 5% increase over all for the year. This is an increase of only $3.50 a week over the year. This increase will help us keep pace with rising costs to ensure our school continues to deliver the quality education for our student that you would expect. Further details will be provided next week.
While Catholic Education determine the Tuition Fee and Building Fund components of the Fee Schedule our school, in collaboration with the Community Council, determines the Student Resource Levy (student based) and School Levy (family based). The purpose of the levies were outlined in the Newsletter last week.
As always, if fees create financial concern for you, I would encourage you to make an appointment with me to discuss how we can help. It is a policy in the Archdiocese that no student should be refused enrolment, excluded or disadvantaged because their family is unable to afford fees. Any discussion is always strictly confidential.
Ms Ellen Fletcher will be taking a break from St John the Apostle next year. She will head over to St Bede's Primary School in Red Hill to teach for the year. Ms Fletcher works hard for all students in her care and I know that our students will miss her. We wish her the very best.
When should we be worried about local COVID cases?
Some parents may be aware that recently a few of our local Catholic churches, including our own St John the Apostle Parish, were named as exposure sites by ACT Health and that people on those sites at the nominated times were listed as casual contacts. Fortunately the times were during school hours and on weekdays when there is not likely to be any connection with our families.
ACT Health are excellent at contact tracing and our parishes have very strict procedures for checking in with the Check in CBR app. I know that ACT Health would have very quickly contacted me if there was any risk to our students and families.
Please be assured that if there is a risk of exposure we will work with ACT Health and Catholic Education to very quickly communicate this with all families.
On Tuesday School Reports were distributed to families via the Compass Parent Portal. I hope you received them. It is a new way to receive reports and in 2021 a very appropriate way. One of the benefits for receiving reports through the Compass Parent Portal will be that parents will always be able to access past reports for their children, without have to remember where they put them.
Parent-Teacher Interviews have been well received. We're pleased to offer the opportunity to clarify any aspects of the school reports in parent teacher interviews as well as celebrate the success of both students and their families in maintaining their learning throughout the Semester.
If you haven't booked in for a parent-teacher interview please ring Leanne on the Front Office to organise a time.
Have a lovely weekend.
One Up Day and Transitions for 2022
During the week before school returns for students, we will provide opportunities for students on Personalised Plans to come into their new classroom with their parents to support the transition process. The purpose of this is to give students the opportunity to look around their new classroom and to have an informal conversation with their new teacher. Rebecca Neiberding will send an email out before the end of the year with the avaiable dates and times. We will also contact particular families for additional transitions.
One Up Day is the day that students will find out who their teacher is for next year. They will have the oppurtunity to go to their new classroom and spend some time with their new teacher. This will take place on Thursday, 16 December (Week 11) from 2-3pm. Matthew will provide a list of teachers for each class in next week's newsletter.
Students with Disability Survey
Our school has been selected to complete the Students with Disability Survey. This online survey is part of the Students With Disability Loading Settings Review Project. The purpose of the project is to develop an evidence base of the cost of adjustments for students with disability in schools across Australia. This is an important national project that may impact on future funding for schools.
The data gathered through this survey will be used to derive an average per-student cost for the provision of adjustments for students with disability. The term 'cost' includes both our school's effort and out-of-pocket expenditure to enable a student with disability to access their education on the same basis as students without disability. These costs are in addition to the provision of mainstream education i.e. on top of the costs that would have otherwise been incurred if the student did not have a disability.
- The data gathered through this survey will be used to inform the actual cost incurred in schools and by the sector (in the case of systemic schools).
- Information collected will be de-identified and aggregated such that even data from small schools will not be able to be used to reasonably identify any individuals.
- This information will only be used for analysis and policy development.
- Our school, together with others from across jurisdictions and sectors, has been selected to participate in this survey through a randomised sampling approach.
- The survey takes approximately 15 minutes per student to complete, this includes the time taken to gather relevant information and consult with relevant stakeholders in our school.
- All data will be kept confidential and is hosted in PwC Australia's managed Amazon Web Services (AWS) environment.
Community Council Hamper Raffle - Tickets now available in the front office
We now have tickets avaiable in the front office, as well as the Qkr app under Community Council Events/Fundraising.
The Hamper Raffle will be drawn on Thursday 9th December (Week 10).
If you can't make a decision on which hamper to choose, then the "All Hampers" ticket is the one for you. Purchase one ticket for $10 and you will get one ticket in each hamper.
The price of tickets are as follows:
1 ticket = $2
3 tickets = $5
5 tickets = $7
Assistant Principal and Inclusion Coordinator
What Students Are Learning About
Year 3 and 4 have begun Advent by creating stunning artworks using paint, oil pastel and oil.
Year 6 participated in Illuminate the retreat designed especially for Year 6 students. Lachie, our Youth Minister, led the students through the program. They had a great time (I could tell from all the noise that was coming from the library!). The activities became a real highlight for the students as it provided them with a hands-on and practical experience of faith, a particular way of learning and expressing faith that is characteristic of Youth ministry.
Catholic Life and Reflection
When meeting with parents this week many of them have commented on how fast the year has gone and how grown up their children seem now. I agree! Even though lockdown seemed endless, all of a sudden we are finishing the year. After all this time as a teacher I still get a thrill from seeing how much children have grown socially, academically and spiritually throughout the year.
A great deal has happened this year that has caused me to grow too.
I have had a significant shift this year in my teaching. Rebekah Brown has been sharing information with you about the work we are doing in the Catalyst initiative. Due to this, I have had a stronger focus on explicit teaching and using reviews to support learning. It seemed a little old school at first but the students love it and are retaining their learning over time.
I have grown personally and for the first time in a long time I am not ending the school year worried about what the future holds. I have faith that God knows what is best for me and that I have the capacity to manage, whatever comes my way.
New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition
14 As for what fell among the thorns, these are the ones who hear; but as they go on their way, they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature. 15 But as for that in the good soil, these are the ones who, when they hear the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patient endurance.
At this time of the year we are asked to “be on earth the heart of God” by remembering our most vulnerable community members and make donations of non-perishable food items. These are delivered to the Parish and are distributed to those families who need extra support at this time. The Society of St Vincent de Paul manage this process for our Parish.
Please share what you are able to. Please see below for some guidance as to what is needed. All donations are gratefully accepted.
Items can be sent in with your child and given to the classroom teacher.
Please provide one or more of the following items for the St Vinnies Christmas Hampers:
Jar of Jam
- Packet of shortbread biscuits
- Large packet of chips
- Chocolates (bar, bag or jar)
- Packet of Savoury Biscuits
- Box of Christmas Bon Bons
- Packet of Lollies
- Small Christmas pudding
- Carton of custard (long life)
- Nuts (jar or packet)
- Tin of Milo
- Bottle of Cordial or Fruit Juice
Other non-perishable food items are gratefully accepted.
Thank you for your gift.
Go gently through this time of preparation for the birth of our Saviour. God bless,
Religious Education Coordinator
Notices from the Parish
Happy birthday to Harrison H, Rudraansh D, Josie A, Jenson C, Leo J and Scarlett M who all celebrated a birthday over the last week.
Please note that we ask students to not bring home made cupcakes to share with the class for their birthdays. This is a precautionary measure for health and hygiene. The Canteen offers a number of options to share with the class. Purchases can be made through the QKR app.
Please see below the fee schedule for 2022.
This payment schedule is based on 26 fortnights. You will need to start payments at the beginning of the new year. If you do not start until after the commencement of school you will need to adjust the figures by calculating how many fortnightly payments you need to pay to cover fees for the year.
Eg. One child per year $3900.00 ÷ 20 fortnights = $195.00 per fortnight.
A reminder that all school fees need to be paid by the end of the school year. Prompt payment would be appreciated.
The financial burden of maintaining the school is shared across the whole school community. It is unfair for some families to shoulder the burden for others, unless there is particular financial stress as to why your school fees have not been paid.
As the end of the school year approaches we would like all outstanding accounts finalised.
Please contact Debbie Milne via email email@example.com if you need to discuss your school fee account.
My working days are Monday – Thursday 8am – 3:30pm
Year 4 One – to One Technology (Chromebooks)
Term 4 payments are past due. Prompt payment is requested.
Payments are to be made on the QKR app.
St John the Apostle Primary School
Florey ACT 2615
The Uniform Shop will be open on Friday 10 December 9-10am. Parents are able to attend in person. Please make sure you check-in using the CBR Check-in QR code, wear a face mask and abide by all social distancing requirements set by ACT Health.
If you have any questions or concerns please email the uniform shop on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Respond honestly to dishonesty
You enter the kitchen. Your child looks at you like she’s hiding something. You see cake crumbs on the bench and the tips of her fingers. ‘Did you eat the chocolate cake?’ Your child smiles at you, with chocolate stuck in her teeth, and innocently replies, ‘No.’
You know your child is not telling the truth. The evidence is everywhere! So, what do you do?
Honesty is an essential value for children and young people to develop as it’s central to building trust and community cohesion. Here are some simple, effective ways to encourage your child to be honest.
Remember, telling fibs is normal
Catching your child in a lie can be frustrating, but remembering that it’s a normal part of growing up can help you keep calm. While there is a moral aspect to honesty, children in the early years of primary school tend to be very concrete thinkers, responding better to your immediate concerns such as ‘I need to know you are telling the truth’ instead of the moral aspects of right and wrong. For older primary aged children and teenagers, the broader issues of trust and morality are parts of the conversations you should have.
Don’t ask questions if you know the answer
If your son is smeared in chocolate cake, don’t say, ‘Did you eat the chocolate cake?’ Instead try, ‘I can see you ate some chocolate cake. You must have been hungry huh?’ Then pause and ask, ‘Do you think I’m pleased or upset? Why? What should we do next time?’ Use the awkward situation as an opportunity to find out more about what your child may need.
Show the truth
If you are a parent of a teenager, you know how easily parent-teen relationships can be harmed by accusations and criticism. If you think that a teenager may have mislead you about an area of concern such as not being where they said they were, then it’s probably wisest to bring your young person’s attention to evidence of the truth rather than back them into a corner with an accusation. “You said you were at Jana’s, but her mum said that Jana didn’t have any visitors yesterday” is a statement of truth from your perspective that’s invites a response from a young person.
Listen to their side
Things often aren’t as they seem so if you think your child or young person is not being completely honest, be prepared to listen to their side of a story. This is not to suggest that you let them pull the proverbial wool over your eyes, but there are times when kids may believe they are telling the truth. Alternatively, they may have told a lie to keep themselves safe or to prevent them from following the crowd. Get your child talking, ascertain if they believe they are being truthful, and if they aren’t, listen to why they bent the truth.
Let the consequences do the teaching
Acknowledge truthfulness when a child or young person owns up to doing the wrong thing. Help them fix the dishonesty and discuss how to do better in the future. Avoid punishment as this will cause more lying in the future. Allowing the consequences to do the work helps keep your relationship intact and ensures that lessons are experienced, and responsibility is taken.
Extract a simple promise
Studies show that children are less likely to be dishonest once they have promised to tell the truth. If they tell you the truth, and then you punish them severely, they will be less likely to tell the truth in the future, promise or not.
Many adults are guilty of social ‘white’ lies. Such ‘little white lies’ that conveniently bend the truth to your advantage are commonplace. Children and young people take their cues from parents, so these little white lies show them it’s okay to bend the truth in certain circumstances. You don’t get away with anything when you are parent – your behaviour is always on show so stick to the truth, even when it’s difficult, if you want your kids to do the same
Honesty takes time and maturity to learn, especially in the face of the clearly tactical advantages of bending the truth. As parents, nurture honesty in kids by modelling, discussing its merits and acknowledging that it’s not always easy to be honest. And maybe, avoid keeping the chocolate cake on the kitchen table.
Michael Grose, founder of Parenting Ideas, is one of Australia’s leading parenting educators. He’s an award-winning speaker and the author of 12 books for parents including Spoonfed Generation, and the bestselling Why First Borns Rule the World and Last Borns Want to Change It. Michael is a former teacher with 15 years experience, and has 30 years experience in parenting education. He also holds a Master of Educational Studies from Monash University specialising in parenting education.