Dear Parents, Friends, Students and Staff,
It is with great pleasure that I welcomed our students and parents back to school for the delayed commencement of Term One. This was not the term start that we anticipated just over one week ago. However, I have been most impressed and grateful to all our community for assisting us as we have put measures in place to ensure the COVID safety of our students, staff, and parents. Let us hope that mask wearing and limited attendance at events will soon no be longer be required.
This is our 30th anniversary year. Matthew Gibney Catholic Primary School has been providing families in the Perth foothills with a quality Catholic education for the past 30 years and this is indeed something to celebrate. I look forward to a year of festive celebrations as we acknowledge all those who have been a part of this community. We will spend time celebrating the past and making plans for the future.
The students arrived at school this week with such enthusiasm and hope for all that the new school year holds for them. The joy with which the students greeted their teachers and class mates captured all that we hold so dear about our school. The students warmly welcomed new class mates and greeted new staff with courtesy and kindness. I am certain that we are in for an excellent year of positive relationships and excellent outcomes for our students across all domains of school life.
Sincerest thanks to our staff for their dedication in preparing their classrooms to welcome the students this week. The classrooms look inviting and attractive and are testament to the care and devotion our staff have towards ensuring school is an exciting place for our students.
This week we welcome Ms Daniela Circosta as short-term teacher for Year Four. Ms Circosta is relieving for Mrs Brescacin, who has been unwell. We wish Ms Circosta all the best as she is welcomed into our school and we wish Mrs Brescacin a speedy and successful recovery so she can be back with us soon. We welcome Mrs Danielle Fanetti, Education Assistant in the Kindy class, and Mr Oliver Battistessa, Physical Education Teacher. Parents, please introduce yourselves to our new staff when you can and welcome them into our community.
Student Wellbeing and Resilience
This year we have a whole school focus on student wellbeing and resilience. We acknowledge that students experience a tremendous amount of physical and mental growth on a daily basis, and face lots of new experiences and challenges. Being resilient gives our students the ability to tackle these head-on, bounce back from any setbacks and have the best chance at succeeding. It allows them to learn and grow in all situations – two skills that are crucial to positive wellbeing and development. Resilience will also help them to approach new situations, people or experiences with confidence and a positive mindset, which will make them more likely to succeed. Teachers will introduce a number of strategies across the school, to foster positive wellbeing and resilience. I look forward to providing parents with opportunities to assist with our focus from time to time throughout the year.
Prayer for the Start of the School Year
Loving God, Our creator, our Saviour, our companion,
bless this journey of a new school year that we undertake today.
Refresh our souls and renew our spirits as we embrace the beautiful ministry you have called us to.
We welcome those who are new to this community and ask that you strengthen them to share the wonderful gifts you have given them.
Lord, make our hearts pure as we prepare for the return of students to this school,
and may you guide them to return with open hearts and minds eager to learn.
We ask this in Your name, Amen
Best wishes for the week ahead.
Parent Information Evening Re-Schedule
The Parent Information Evening has been re-scheduled to Wednesday 24th February. We will offer two sessions in each class, from Kindy to Year Six. Parent can choose to come to either session. Session times are 6.30pm and 7.00pm. There will be no gathering prior to the class meetings. At least one parent from each family is encouraged to come along and hear important information for the year ahead for each of our classes.
Year Six Student Leaders
Congratulations to all the students in the Year Six class for their leadership roles this year. All the students in the class are leaders of our school and all have responsibilities for leadership that they must maintain throughout the year. My thanks to Miss Zurzolo for her work in ensuring the Year Six students have opportunities to excel as leaders. I look forward to working with the Year Six class as they lead the school in several areas during the year.
Bush Fire Appeal
We were all distressed to see such devastation caused to so many families in the recent bushfires. It impacted even more because of the close vicinity of the fires to our own local community. The Year Six leaders will organize some fund-raising for the Lord Mayor’s Appeal to take place next week at school. Look out for our student leaders if you would like to donate money to the appeal.
Ash Wednesday, the first day of the Season of Lent, is on Wednesday 17th February. We would usually attend Mass, with parishioners, at St Francis of Assisi Parish as a school community. At this stage, our intention is to take the students from Year One to Year Six on the bus to the Parish Church for Mass. However, we need to be a little cautious, because of the current COVID restrictions, and see what the coming week brings for us. We will inform parents as soon as we are able of our plans for the celebration of Mass on Ash Wednesday.
School Advisory Council and P&F Meeting
Parents are reminded that the first School Advisory Council Meeting and P&F Meeting will be held next Wednesday 17th February. All parents are invited to come along to the P&F Meeting in the Library commencing at 7.30pm. Please consider coming along to have your say about events planned for 2021.
Parents are reminded that an emailed message needs to be sent to the administration office by 9.15am if a student is absent from school. The message may be telephoned through but must be followed up with an email or a written note. We have a legal requirement to accurately record all student attendances. Please do not send absentee notifications through to class teachers in the mornings. Teachers are teaching at this time and do not have time to check messages. Please assist us in not having to send reminder SMS messages by ensuring the administration office is notified of an absence in a prompt manner.
School Fees Statements
School fees statements will be made available to parents by early next week. Please select your preferred payment plan for paying school fess and return to school as soon as possible. Parents who have any concerns or queries about school fees and would like to discuss alternative payment options are to contact Finance Officer, Mrs Louell Renzullo or Principal, Mrs Therese Hussey. email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
Administration Office and Gate Opening Times
The main gate for the school opens at 8.20am. Students and parents arriving prior to this time are asked to wait outside the gate until the gate opens. Staff are often in meetings before school and it is not convenient to be opening the gate before the scheduled opening time. Classrooms and the administration office do not open until 8.35am. Students and parents arriving at school prior to this time must wait in the undercover area until the classrooms are opened. Please note that there is no staff supervision of students prior to 8.35am.
Best wishes for the week ahead.