Dear St Joseph’s Community

We have a very exciting and busy week this week. Stage 3 is on camp in Brisbane for three days, and our Year 3 students are celebrating a formation day on Tuesday as many of them prepare to receive the sacrament of Confirmation this evening. 

As we approach the middle of the term, we are very proud of how hard our students are working. A strong work ethic in the classroom is a combination of the encouragement and effort of the teachers and Enrichment Tutors and the support of parents and carers. Our staff members are working hard to ensure all of our students are achieving to the best of their abilities.

I’m currently reading The Anxious Generation, by  Jonathan Haidt, a very interesting book and well worth reading by any parent who is considering providing access to the internet to their children. Haight likens the impact of smartphones to the way Cuckoo birds lay their eggs. The common cuckoo is an obligate brood parasite, which means it lays its eggs in the nests of other birds. Hatched cuckoo chicks can then push host eggs out of the nest or be raised alongside the host's chicks. Haight sees access to smartphones and ipads in children and adolescents in a similar way. These technologies and their associated apps are somewhat parasitic. They are designed to be addictive, and they push out other, more developmentally appropriate activities from children’s days, leaving them with very little of substance in return. Haidt argues that the intense rise of technology has robbed our children of social opportunities and play. I know this is something I am very aware of as a parent of young children. 

SCRIPTURE REFLECTION 

Pentecost Sunday brings us to a profound moment in John 20:19-23. Here, we witness the Holy Spirit descending upon the disciples, filling them with courage and the power to spread the Good News. Jesus breathes on them and says, "Receive the Holy Spirit," empowering them to forgive sins and bring peace.

This powerful event marks the birth of the Church and the beginning of its mission to spread the Gospel. For our school community, Pentecost serves as a reminder of the transformative power of the Holy Spirit in our lives. It encourages us to embrace the gifts and fruits of the Spirit—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. We pray particularly for those students who will receive these gifts tonight when they receive the sacrament of Confirmation. 

As educators, parents, and students, let's reflect on how we can allow the Holy Spirit to work through us. We are called to be instruments of peace, compassion, and understanding in our daily interactions. By embodying these values, we create a nurturing and supportive environment where everyone can thrive. May this Pentecost inspire us to renew our commitment to living out the values of our faith, spreading the light and love of the Holy Spirit in all that we do.

You are invited to listen to Bishop Greg’s Homily from Sunday’s Mass. 

RECESS FOOD

We’ve noticed that some students are not eating when we have eating time at recess in the afternoons. We encourage students to pack something small for recess (or something extra if your child is eating all of their food at lunch). This provides our students with that extra bit of brain energy needed to ensure they can do their best learning in the afternoon session, and that they are not ravenous come home time. 

PARENT PICK UP 

We thank our parents for their patience as we navigate Parent Pick Up each afternoon. We generally move through the cars very swiftly and have parents in and out as quickly as possible. Just a reminder that, in alignment with our traffic management plan, we ask parents and carers to remain in their cars and for students to enter and exit cars from the kerb side only. With so many cars moving around we are very mindful of keeping everyone safe. If you have other family members, such as grandparents, picking up your children, we’d love it if you could let them know to remain in their cars too.

SCHOOL COMMUNITY GROUP TERM 2 MEETING AGENDA AND RSVP

Our Term 2 School Community Group Meeting is scheduled for Monday, 3 June from 6:30 - 7:45 pm in the school staffroom. A huge thank you to Wendy Sawan for volunteering to chair the meeting and to Simone Green for taking notes. A have Anna Moloney presenting on the Zones of Regulation pastoral learning program all of our students are undertaking this year. We also have Julie Parker, Digital Learning Specialist and consultant, presenting on how parents can manage screen time with their children; thanks for organising this, Wendy. The school will share student feedback on the changes to classroom structures and the whole-school approach to pastoral care and wellbeing being undertaken at school this year. There is also an opportunity for parents to share their thoughts on the school uniform. 

Here is a link to RSVP for the SCG Meeting.

CONGRATULATIONS MISS MACDONALD

Miss MacDonald was successful last year in receiving a scholarship from the Good Samaritans religious order for their mentoring program. The scholarship provides Miss MacDonald with spiritual formation and leadership development offered through the extensive Good Samaritans network. She is also utilising the scholarship to support her current academic studies, completing a Postgraduate Certificate in Religious Education through Australian Catholic University. You can read about this in this edition of The Good Samaritans The Good Oil

TELL THEM FROM ME SURVEY CLOSING SOON

A reminder that the Tell Them From Me survey closes very soon.  The surveys are an important part of our whole-school evaluation and planning process.

We would like to invite you to complete the Tell Them From Me (TTFM) Partners in Learning survey. As we value the role of parents and carers within our school community, we would greatly appreciate your feedback. The information you provide will be used to continue our commitment to working together in partnership to further improve student learning and wellbeing at St Joseph's Primary School. The survey is anonymous and will take approximately 20 minutes to complete.

Note that most responses are multiple-choice using a scale from Strongly Disagree to Strongly Agree. It can be quite easy to mix this scale up when completing the survey. Please take your time to read the questions carefully, so we have the most accurate data we can attain.

You are able to access the parent survey on your computer or mobile device by using this URL: tellthemfromme.com/alst2024

I appreciate your support; your voice is important to us.

GARDINER CHESS COMPETITION EXPRESSION OF INTEREST

The Gardiner Chess Tournament will be held on Tuesday 18th June, hosted by Alstonville High School. Registration is from 8.30 am to 9.15 am. Start at 9.30 am and finish around 2.30 pm.

This tournament is open to students in Stages 1-3. As this event is local, we can walk students to and from the event.

The cost of the tournament is $24.00. Expressions of interest are due by Friday, 7th June. Please complete this form to indicate your child's interest in this event.

SACRAMENT OF CONFIRMATION

Our candidates are very excited to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation this Tuesday from Bishop Greg. We are delighted to have our youth ministers, Oli and Eliza, helping us with our Formation Day. Thank you in advance to the members of our choir who are coming to sing. Your singing brings much joy and excitement to our worship experience. 

SUPPORTING LITERACY SKILLS AT HOME

LITERACY TOOLKIT

Filter and find great information, advice and activities to support your child's literacy development at home. Here are some examples:

Stage 2 has been learning about how games can be inclusive and safe during PE​. So far the students have explored some warm-up games, soccer,  tee ball and modified AFL. 

DIOCESAN RUGBY UNION TRIALS

Last Friday, Hugh Woolley and Zeke Kubils (Year 6) travelled to Grafton to compete in the Dio Rugby Union Trials. We congratulate both boys for being selected on they day to represent the Lismore Diocese at the Polding Rugby Union Trials.

DIOCESAN CROSS COUNTRY 

Today, Braith Duncan (Year 4) and Hugo McCall (Year 3) competed at the Diocesan Cross Country in Grafton. We look forward to celebrating the boys' results at our assembly on Friday.

Congratulations to Andrea Gooding who celebrated her Baptism on the weekend. God bless you Andrea.

MONITOR YOUR CHILD’S ONLINE ACTIVITIES. NEGATIVE INTERACTIONS CAN LEAD TO SCHOOL AVOIDANCE. 

Monitoring your child’s online activities is a crucial aspect of parenting in the digital age, and it can indeed play a role in addressing and preventing issues like school avoidance. Here are some reasons why monitoring online activities is important and how it can help prevent negative interactions that may contribute to school avoidance:

  • Early Detection of Issues. Regular monitoring allows you to detect any early signs of negative online interactions, such as cyberbullying or social media conflicts. Addressing these issues promptly can prevent them from escalating and negatively impacting your child's well-being.
  • Understanding Social Dynamics. By staying informed about your child's online interactions, you gain insights into their social dynamics and relationships. Understanding the online environment helps you identify positive and negative influences on your child's emotional and social wellbeing.
  • Communication and Trust. Open communication about online activities fosters trust between you and your child. When children know that their online experiences are open for discussion, they are more likely to share concerns or challenges they may be facing.
  • Setting Boundaries. Establishing clear expectations and boundaries for online behaviour is essential. By monitoring your child's activities, you can ensure that they are adhering to these boundaries and engaging in positive online interactions.
  • Providing Guidance on Conflict Resolution. If negative interactions do occur, use them as teachable moments to guide your child on conflict resolution and appropriate ways to handle disagreements. This skill is valuable both online and offline.

By actively engaging in their digital world, you can create a safer online environment and contribute to their emotional and social resilience.

Dear St Joseph’s Community

A happy Mother’s Day to all our mothers and mother figures for Sunday. A huge thank you to all of those family members who attended our Mother’s Day liturgy and assembly last Friday. It was wonderful to see so many people sharing in the spirit of the occasion. A huge thank you to Mr Jones and Mr Crosby for organising this and thanks to Mrs Wraight for organising the kindy performance. Thank you also to Wendy Sawan, Kellie Wilks and Mel Iverson for their work on the Mother’s Day Stall.

~ Fr Max gave a special blessing to our mothers ~

It was lovely to also acknowledge so many Gold Award winners on Friday! Well done to Zara, Morris, Eloise, Harper and Melodi. Congratulations also to Zoe Hargraves for winning the QUOTA Kindness Awards for the quiet and unassuming way she supports her peers. 

I would like to acknowledge the hard work of all of our teachers and the Enrichment Tutors and leaders who support them. We are in the midst of the largest curriculum reform we have seen in NSW for around 30 years. Our teachers across all year levels have worked incredibly hard to implement this new Maths and English curriculum and we are seeing some tremendous benefits already. We have also been closely monitoring our writing data at sentence level for the past three terms. With a strong focus on building teacher capacity to teach students to compose strong sentences (the building blocks of all writing) we have seen a tremendous improvement in where our students are placed in their writing. This is something of which our students and their teachers and supporters can all be very proud!

CANTEEN NEWS
Ms Thrum returns to the canteen this Wednesday; we hope she has had a wonderful break! Sincere thanks to Kelly Towns for leading the canteen this week and to Nadia Watson and Carolyn Buchanan who were amazing supporters.

TELL THEM FROM ME SURVEY CLOSING SOON

A reminder that over the next two weeks, we will be inviting students, staff and parents to provide feedback on their experience of our school using an online survey. The surveys are an important part of our whole-school evaluation and planning process.

We would like to invite you to complete the Tell Them From Me (TTFM) Partners in Learning survey. As we value the role of parents and carers within our school community, we would greatly appreciate your feedback. The information you provide will be used to continue our commitment to working together in partnership to further improve student learning and wellbeing at St Joseph's Primary School. The survey is anonymous and will take approximately 20 minutes to complete.

Note that most responses are multiple-choice using a scale from Strongly Disagree to Strongly Agree. It can be quite easy to mix this scale up when completing the survey. Please take your time to read the questions carefully, so we have the most accurate data we can attain.

You are able to access the parent survey on your computer or mobile device by using this URL: tellthemfromme.com/alst2024

I appreciate your support; your voice is important to us.

GARDINER CHESS COMPETITION EXPRESSION OF INTEREST

The Gardiner Chess Tournament will be held on Tuesday 18th June, hosted by Alstonville High School. Registration is from 8.30 am to 9.15 am. Start at 9.30 am and finish around 2.30 pm.

This tournament is open to students in Stages 1-3. As this event is local, we can walk students to and from the event

The cost of the tournament is $24.00. Expressions of interest are due by Friday, 7th June. Please complete this form to indicate your child's interest in this event.

SCRIPTURE REFLECTION 

As we celebrate Ascension Sunday, we reflect on Mark 16:15-20, where Jesus gives His disciples the Great Commission to "go into all the world and proclaim the good news to the whole creation." This moment marks not only an end as Jesus ascends to heaven but also a beginning of a mission for His followers.

In our school, this call resonates deeply. It challenges us to think about how we, as a community, can share our values and knowledge not just within our walls, but beyond them. It inspires us to be ambassadors of goodwill, understanding, and compassion in all our interactions.

Let’s take this message to heart and encourage our students to see themselves as part of a larger story, where they have roles to play in making the world a better place. May we all carry forward the spirit of service and outreach that Jesus entrusted to His disciples.

You are invited to listen to Bishop Greg’s Homily from Sunday’s Mass. 

FEEDBACK ON THE NEWSLETTER

Recently, we sought feedback from families about the frequency of the newsletter. The results were very close but the preference remained for a weekly newsletter, so we will maintain this going forward. 

REVISED POSITIVE BEHAVIOUR SUPPORT PLAN 

Week 4 launch of our revised Positive Behaviour Support Plan and processes. A huge thank you to those parents who shared their feedback at the two parent sessions held last term. The feedback was very positive and our revised approach, while not markedly different from our current approach, is more closely aligned with the recent research and is more positively framed, utilising the philosophy of Positive Behaviour For Learning (PBL). See more below in Mission News. 

CONFIRMATION

A friendly reminder that Confirmation is next Tuesday, 21st May. We look forward to working together during Formation Day to learn about and prepare for the Sacrament of Confirmation. Please remember to return all the preparation booklets. Bishop Greg will no longer be speaking to families prior to the Sacrament, rather he looks forward to speaking with everyone during the Liturgy. We will still meet at 5.30 to receive sashes and will commence at 6pm.

POSITIVE BEHAVIOUR SUPPORT - NEW PROCESSES 

As part of our 3-year Strategic Priorities for Pastoral Care and our annual school improvement goal, our staff have been reviewing our approach to supporting positive student behaviour. 

After 2 terms reviewing contemporary evidence, our staff, in consultation with parents, have decided to replace what had been our ‘Behaviour Benchmarks’ with an approach aligned to positive behaviour support, which promotes on-task and pro-social behaviour. The approach offers regular opportunities to support students to demonstrate such behaviours through redirection and by re-teaching expected behaviours. This approach is underpinned by the four values that we are working hard to instil into our community: Safety, Effort, Respect and Self-responsibility.

Two types of behaviour are distinguished as part of the process; minor or major. Minor behaviours do not meet the school expectations but can be redirected or retaught. If students demonstrate these behaviours, they will be supported and enabled by their class teacher to make better learning choices and demonstrate our school values of Safety, Effort, Respect and Self-responsibility. When a student has continued to exhibit minor unexpected behaviours a third time within a day, the student will have time to reflect on their behaviour with a leadership team member at recess. This reflection allows students to discuss and understand their behaviour and its impact on themselves and others and how they can be supported to move forward positively. 

Parents will be communicated with via email from their child’s class teacher should they attend a behaviour reflection. The email will include the number of reflections the student has had for the current term. Parents are asked to acknowledge receiving this communication via an embedded Google Form. We encourage all parents and carers to speak with their child about the behaviour requiring reflection with a focus on their positive classroom behaviour moving forward.

Major behaviours are different to minors, in that they are actions that are offensive and/or dangerous to the physical and or emotional wellbeing of self, others or property. Immediate intervention is required for these behaviours. When a major behaviour occurs, a member of the leadership team is contacted who then works with the student and their family. 

After the success of our Community Day last term, we will now have one at the end of each term. This day will be called our Community Rewards Day and is an acknowledgement of our students who strive to uphold and promote our school values. At the discretion of the Principal, any student receiving three reflections in a term may not be able to participate in that term’s rewards day. We look forward to these celebratory days as a way to foster a positive and values-driven school environment.

Thank you to the many parents and students who have offered feedback on this process. We are grateful for your input.

READING RESOURCES FOR HOME

  • Storyline online - streams videos featuring celebrated actors reading children’s books alongside creatively produced illustrations. Reading aloud to children has been shown to improve reading, writing and communication skills, logical thinking and concentration and inspire a lifelong love of reading.
  • Stories from Space - Stories read by real astronauts in space!
    • Reading at home
    • Vocabulary
    • Phonological and phonemic awareness
    • Alphabet letter sounds

ARTS PARTNERSHIP GRANT 

Last week we welcomed Trudi Roberts to our school to teach all of our students about Indigenous Storytelling. Trudi shared her knowledge about the Bundjalung language and told us the story of how the birds got their colours. Students and staff alike had a fantastic time learning Bundjalung words for welcomes, farewells and for counting. Trudi will be back in the following weeks to work with a group of students in story writing workshops.

SCHOLASTIC BOOK CLUB

Bookclub catalogues for Issue 3 have been sent home. If your student missed out please they can collect one from their classroom. Online orders are quick and simple, go to LOOP to place your orders. All orders must be received by 9am Thursday 16 May.

ZONE CROSS COUNTRY

Last Tuesday, we were fortunate to have a small patch of dry weather to run at Zone Cross Country. Our children displayed very respectful behaviour and great sportsmanship qualities. We congratulate all of our children for their effort and attitudes on the day. Of the 44 children that attended, the following children were successful in their races and secured a spot at the Diocesan Cross Country next week: 

  • Hugo McCall- 1st place 9 years boys
  • Braith Duncan- 8th place 10 years boys 
  • Jordy Thompson- 5th place 11 years girls
  • Sully Mitchell- 5th place 11 years boys 

CONGRATULATIONS ABIGAIL COLLINS

Abigail Collins recently competed in the Winter Wipeout Line Dancing competition at the Gold Coast. Abbi received 2 first place medals and 2 third place medals. She also competed in the World Dance Masters section where she got third place in her age division. This achievement  qualifies her to travel to England for the World Dance Masters later in the year. 

Abbi’s family and our school community are extremely proud of her! She is very keen to compete in more competitions this year. These dancing achievements have given her a new shine of confidence. We wish Abbi all the best in her future competitions.

~ GOLD AWARD WINNERS ~

~ TEACHER AWARD WINNERS ~

~ QUOTA KINDNESS AWARD ~

TEACH YOUR CHILD THE ESSENTIAL SKILL OF BEING ORGANISED

Start with assisting them to pack their bag and lay out their uniform the night before. You are helping them on the path to self-responsibility.

Teaching your child organisational skills is a valuable and empowering endeavour that sets the foundation for self-responsibility and a sense of control over their own lives. Here are some tips to help your child develop organisational skills, starting with preparing for school:

  • Establish a Routine. Create a consistent daily routine that includes specific times for waking up, getting ready, and leaving for school. A structured routine provides predictability and helps your child develop a sense of time management.
  • Prepare the Night Before. Encourage your child to pack their school bag and lay out their uniform the night before. This proactive approach reduces morning stress and ensures that everything needed for the school day is ready to go.
  • Use Checklists. Create checklists for morning and evening tasks. Checklists provide a visual guide for your child to follow and help reinforce the habit of being organised. As their skills improve, they may not need the checklist. 
  • Model Organisation. Lead by example. Children often learn by observing, so showcasing organisational habits reinforces the importance of being well-prepared.
  • Adjust and Adapt. Recognise that organisational needs may change over time. Be flexible and willing to adjust strategies based on your child's evolving responsibilities and needs.

Dear St Joseph’s Community

We have had an excellent beginning to Term 2. Our students have returned ready to get straight back into our learning and our staff have loved having our students back after the break. 

We look forward to celebrating Mother’s Day with our Mother’s Day Prayer Service and Assembly this Friday. Mothers and mother figures are instrumental in our lives and pausing to celebrate these remarkable women is so important. Please note that this commences earlier at 2:00 pm. Our students have been busy working in Mother’s Day craft but will also have a small Mother’s Day stall that students can choose to attend at Lunchtime on Friday. Most gifts are $5 and below. 

Congratulations to the students who attended Polding Winter Sports Trials in Tamworth: Lulu Barnes (Netball), Zeke Kubils (Rugby League), Sullivan Mitchell (Soccer), Tyler Webster (Hockey), Harry Hoskings (Hockey) and Emma Quinlan (Hockey). More details below!

This week, we begin our engagement with Trudi Roberts as a part of our Arts Grant initiative for this year. Trudi will be leading our students through indigenous storytelling, aligned with our goal of working with Trudy Roberts and Oral Roberts and our indigenous students and our amazing student writers to compose a children’s book and to develop an indigenous mural. We are very excited to be working with Trudi and Oral on this initiative and a huge thank you to Ms Kingsford and Mr Murgha for their work on this project.

Wishing you a great week!

SCRIPTURE REFLECTION 

This week's Gospel from John 15:9-17  emphasises Jesus' command to love each other as He has loved us. He describes His followers as friends, not servants, and highlights that true love involves sacrifice - the ultimate example being His own life.

In our school, this message encourages us to cultivate a culture of genuine care and selflessness. It serves as a reminder of the deep connections we should strive to foster among students, staff, and families, mirroring the loving and sacrificial friendship that Jesus exemplifies. Let us use this teaching to reinforce the importance of looking out for one another and being willing to go the extra mile in support of our community. May we all strive to be not just classmates, colleagues, or acquaintances but true friends bound by respect, kindness, and care.

You are invited to listen to Bishop Greg’s Homily from Sunday’s Mass. 

TELL THEM FROM ME PARENT SURVEY OPENS TODAY

In the coming weeks we will be inviting students, teachers and parents to provide feedback on their experience of our school using an online survey. The surveys are an important part of our whole-school evaluation and planning process.

We would like to invite you to complete the Tell Them From Me (TTFM) Partners in Learning survey, which opens today. As we value the role of parents and carers within our school community we would greatly appreciate your feedback. The information you provide will be used to maintain our commitment to working together in partnership to further improve student learning and wellbeing at St Joseph’s. The survey is anonymous and will take approximately 20 minutes to complete and will be open from Tuesday 7 May (Week 2, Term 2) through to Friday 24 May (end of Week 4, Term 2). The survey has been shared via Compass. 

CANTEEN REMINDER

A reminder that the canteen will only be open on Friday this week, with Ms Thrum on leave. A huge thank you to Kelly Towns for taking on the Canteen role on Fridays these two weeks. Thanks also to Carolyn Buchanan for her amazing support of Kellie last Friday!

MOTHER’S DAY CELEBRATION

We look forward to seeing our mothers and mother figures at our special liturgy and assembly this Friday at 2 p.m. We will begin with our class, Gold, and Quota Kindness awards before beginning our Mother’s Day celebration. 

THE YARNERS - INTERGENERATIONAL GROUP

We are back this Thursday at 10:55 a.m. All are welcome to join our knitting group for the next six weeks! We look forward to joining our squares to make beautiful blankets for the Vinnies winter appeal and to wrapping someone in need with love this winter.

ST JOEY’S BIGGEST AFTERNOON TEA - HELPERS NEEDED

We are delighted to host a ‘Biggest Morning Tea’ to raise much-needed funds for the Cancer Council. Every dollar raised makes an incredible difference to those impacted by cancer. We will host afternoon tea for all our students on Monday, May 27th, at 1:20 p.m

We are asking for any donations of baked goods or afternoon tea treats for our students to purchase at our fundraiser. We would also love some parent helpers who can come and help sell the afternoon tea treats. Please email kathryn.jones@lism.catholic.edu.au if you can help set up and sell the afternoon tea treats. It will be lots of fun and your help is greatly appreciated! 

UNDERSTANDING THE K-6 STUDENT REPORT INFORMATION FOR PARENTS

See below for the report information document for parents. It explains the content and structure of the report, gives examples and explains the language used to describe student achievement and areas for growth. It breaks down what has been assessed for each focus area within English and Mathematics. If you have any questions regarding student reports please make contact with your classroom teacher. 

SIMPLE, COMPOUND AND COMPLEX SENTENCES

We have done a lot of learning about sentences and sentence structure since the release of the new K-6 syllabus. When you are reading with your child, see if you can recognise which sentences are simple, compound or complex. This resource explains each type of sentence and provides some simple activities you could try at home. We also explore sentences by their meaning. The poster below gives a description of each type. 

SCHOLASTIC BOOK CLUB

Bookclub catalogues for Issue 3 went home with students last week. If your student missed out please they can collect one from their classroom. Online orders are quick and simple, go to LOOP to place your orders. All orders must be received by 9am Thursday 16 May.

WHAT IS BULLYING?

Understanding bullying helps students and parents distinguish between regular conflicts and actual bullying. This helps avoid confusion and ensures that the right help is given when needed. It can also empower you as parents to engage in prevention efforts proactively. By teaching your children about respectful behaviour, empathy, dignity, courage, and inclusion, parents can help prevent bullying from occurring in the first place. Bullying refers to the unwanted, repeated and intentional use of words or actions against a student or a group of students to cause distress and risk to their wellbeing.

Bullying means behaviour that has three (3) key features:

  1. It involves the intentional misuse of power in a relationship;
  2. It is ongoing and repeated; and
  3. It involves behaviours that can cause harm.

A student can acquire power through advantage, such as social status, popularity, an advantage in size and strength, number of allies, age, skill, or membership in a socially defined dominant group, which could be based, for example, on wealth or gender.

Behaviours that do not constitute bullying include:

  1. Mutual arguments and disagreements;
  2. Not liking someone or a single act of social rejection;
  3. A single episode of hurtful words or actions;
  4. Isolated incidents of aggression, intimidation and/or violence.

Indirect bullying (also known as covert bullying) is not always immediately observable and acknowledged as bullying. Indirect bullying can be discreet and anonymous, and the person experiencing the bullying behaviour may not realise it until after it has occurred.

Examples of indirect bullying include:

  • Spreading rumours: Sharing false or harmful information about someone to tarnish their reputation.
  • Gossiping: Engaging in negative discussions about a person without their knowledge.
  • Social manipulation: Encouraging others to exclude or reject a person from social groups.
  • Cyberbullying: Using digital platforms to harass, intimidate, or spread harmful content about a person.
  • Stealing: Discreetly and repeatedly stealing personal belongings.

When parents understand what bullying entails, they can effectively communicate with their child about their experiences at school, in the community and online. By using the correct terminology and understanding the dynamics of bullying, parents can encourage open dialogue and provide the necessary support.

To understand more about bullying watch these videos:

What is bullying?

Watch Bullying and Conflict with your child.

ZONE CROSS COUNTRY 

We wish all of our students competing in the Zone Cross Country today the very best of luck!

A reminder that zone singlets are due back this week. We ask that they please be washed as soon as possible to avoid any staining. 

WINTER SPORTS TRIALS

Congratulations to our students who attended Polding Winter Sports Trials in Tamworth last Friday: Lulu Barnes (Netball), Zeke Kubils (Rugby League), Sully Mitchell (Soccer), Tyler Webster (Hockey), Harry Hoskings (Hockey) and Emma Quinlan (Hockey). We are very proud of the effort you have put into your chosen sports. 

These children competed against strong sportspeople from other Diocese in the state for a chance to progress to the next level, PSSA. Sully Mitchell was successfully selected in the football (soccer) team, and Harry Hosking was successfully selected in the hockey team. Well done! 

TITANS HALFTIME PLAYER

Congratulations to Jack Kubils who played on the Titans fields at half time on Saturday!

ON-TIME TO SCHOOL MEANS YOUR CHILD IS ON TRACK TO UNLEASH THEIR POTENTIAL.

Arriving on time to school is a fundamental aspect of a child's educational experience and plays a crucial role in unlocking their full potential. Here are several reasons why being on time to school is important for a child's academic and personal development:

Consistent Learning Opportunities. Being on time ensures that your child doesn't miss the beginning of lessons, announcements, or important information shared at the start of the school day. This consistency in attendance provides a steady flow of learning opportunities.

Establishing a Routine. Timely arrival helps children establish a morning routine, promoting organisation and time management skills. Consistent routines contribute to a sense of stability and preparedness for the day's activities.

Reduced Disruptions. Arriving on time minimises disruptions for both the child and the class. Late arrivals can interrupt the flow of lessons and can be distracting for the child and their peers.

Building Respect for Punctuality. Punctuality is a valuable life skill. By consistently arriving on time to school, children develop a sense of responsibility.

Children’s Liturgy of the Word – Sunday 12th May 2024

Leader on the day will be Mrs Jenna Wraight. Children’s Liturgy helps your child/children grow in their faith and love of Jesus. We encourage you to bring your family to the 8.30am Mass at Our Lady of the Rosary Alstonville Church on Sunday 12th May. The children accompany their family in the church at the beginning of Mass, and then when the Liturgy of the Word commences, the children leave to go to the hall to hear the Word at a level that they can understand. It is designed for children aged from 3 – 12. The activity sheet that follows the Gospel of the day, is age appropriate. All of the Children’s Liturgy Leaders have undergone Safeguarding Training and have been verified under the Working with Children Check process. Please feel free to contact the parish office on 6628 3047 should you have any queries.

Parish News

For Your Information

SCHOOL FEES ACCOUNTS

Term 1 School Fees and annual levies should now be paid in full (unless you have nominated and had confirmation of an instalment plan commitment).

Please be advised that Term 2 School Fees have been billed and (unless you are on an instalment plan) are payable by May 31st, 2024.

If you are experiencing financial difficulties, please contact Caroline McInnes in the first instance alstp@lism.catholic.edu.au to discuss your payment plan options.

Canteen News

A reminder that the canteen is not open Wednesdays for Weeks 1 and 2 as Ms Thrum is on leave.

Attendance Matters

ABSENCES ADD UP 

5 days absent per term means that your child misses 10% of their learning.

The impact of school absences, even seemingly small ones, can accumulate and affect a child's learning significantly. The cumulative effect of absences over time can lead to gaps in knowledge and understanding. Consistent attendance is vital for academic success, as each day in school provides valuable learning opportunities. If your child is expressing reluctance to go to school regularly, it's essential to address the issue promptly. 

Wellbeing News

REALTALK SUBSCRIPTION

Diocese of Lismore Catholic Schools (DLCS) has purchased a subscription to the RealTalk online parent resource centre for all parents in our Catholic schools.

All parents can now access a comprehensive online resource created by RealTalk Australia that provides access to a collection of resources to support parents and caregivers explore a diverse range of topics including:

  • Puberty and personal development and identity
  • Online safety
  • Friendships
  • Consent and respectful relationships

Please see the flyer below to create an account and access these excellent resources.

eSAFETY PARENT WEBINARS TERM 2

A number of eSafety Parent Webinars are available to parents this term. We we encourage interested parents and carers to register. 

eSAFETY 101: HOW ESAFETY CAN HELP 

This webinar provides an overview of the eSafety Commissioner and supporting programs and resources for parents and carers, children and young people.

Suitable for parents and carers of children and young people in primary and secondary school. 

Tuesday, 14 May: 12:30 pm
Thursday, 6 June: 12:30 pm

Register here for eSafety 101

CONSENT AND ONLINE BOUNDARIES

As children begin to navigate the online world, they need to know how to make decisions around consent and boundaries. This webinar will outline strategies for parents and carers, as well as support those hard-to-have conversations.

It is suitable for parents and carers of children in primary school.

Tuesday, 28 May: 12:30 pm
Tuesday, 18 June: 12:30 pm

Register here for Consent and Online Boundaries

SETTING YOUR CHILD UP FOR SUCCESS ONLINE 

An overview of having conversations about tech and online interaction, putting boundaries and rules in place, using parental controls, and monitoring your child online.

It's suitable for parents and carers of primary school children.

Thursday, 30 May: 12:30 pm
Thursday, 20 June: 12:30 pm

Register here for Setting your Child up for Success Online

SEASONS FOR GROWTH PARENT INFORMATION NIGHT - 16TH MAY

Seasons for Growth is a small group education program that supports children and young people to develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes to understand and respond well to experiences of change, loss and grief.

Seasons for Growth supports children and young people who have experienced change and loss, including, although not limited to friendship changes; family separation; loss or death of someone they care about; relocation and forced migration or living away in out-of-home care. It is recommended that children and young people impacted by bereavement wait 6-12 months before participating in a Seasons for Growth program, which we offer throughout each year.

This year, our Parent Information Night will be held on Thursday, 16th May, at 5.30pm in the staff room. Kate Jones is a trained companion for this program and will facilitate the groups this year. Babysitting will be provided for any students or siblings who will be in attendance, and pizza will be offered for dinner.

Please register your interest in your child participating in this program, and your attendance at our information session, via this quick Google Form link

Sport News

POLDING WINTER SPORTS TRIALS

We wish Lulu Barnes, Sully Mitchell, Tyler Webster, Harry Hosking, Emma Quinlan, and Zeke Kubils luck as they represent our Diocese at the Polding Winter Sports Trials in Tamworth this Friday. 

ZONE CROSS COUNTRY 

The Event for Zone Cross Country is active on Compass. Permission and payment must be received for your child to attend this event. All resources can be accessed in the resources tab. This week children will be allocated a singlet for the day, though they will not be sent home until next Monday in collections. 

SCHOOL CROSS COUNTRY HOUSE RESULTS

The school cross country trophy was awarded to Cawley house at our last assembly for term 1. Our year 6 students were delighted to receive it on behalf of the green team! Our winning students also received their awards and ribbons.

  • First - Cawley (green)
  • Second - McCarthy (red)
  • Third - Dara (yellow)

Cawley received the 2024 Cross Country trophy!

Cross Country Champions!

Library News

Celebrations

Happy birthday to these students who have celebrated their birthday since the last newsletter:

  • Jonty Allen

  • Zeke Kubils

  • Elkie Hinton

  • Jordy Thompson

  • Kalahni Mossman

  • Henry Brady

  • Matilda Hollows

  • Josie Crook

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR AWARD WINNERS

Kindy: Isla Harper, Louis Hutley

Year 1: Olly Lowe, Edward Watson, Maggie McCall, Alby Matley

Year 2: Charlotte Miller, Noah Faifaise, Riley Iverson

Year 3: Elaina Battaglia, Charlotte Dyson

Year 4: William Brady, Eloise Watson, Zara Towns

Year 5: Indy Vu, Ethan Cox, Melodi Nolan

Year 6: Finlay Baker, Zeke Kubils, Addison Clifford

Library: Emma Quinlan, Millie Webster, Eloise Watson

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR GOLD AWARD WINNERS

Maddi Layland, Lachlan Thorpe, Sophie Gonzalez-Yule, Hugo McCall, Tess Jones, Daniel Collins, Addi Bambrook, Kalahni Mossman, Chloe Carr-Hambly, Ruby O'Bryan, Maggie McCall, Olly Lowe

BAPTISMS

Congratulations to Elkie and Scarlett Hinton and Remy and Jonty Allen who were all baptised on Sunday in Our Lady of the Rosary Parish by Fr Max. Please know our prayers are with you as you enter the church! 

KEVIN HOGAN LEADERSHIP GATHERING

Well done to four of our school leaders, Emma, James, Harry and Roman, who represented St Joseph's by attending Kevin Hogan MP's annual School Leadership gathering in the holidays. 

This year's presenter was Lyn Larsen AM, the youngest Australian Cricket Captain and home-grown athlete from Tuntable Creek. 

Incredibly humble, Lyn shared her extraordinary experiences in leadership and how she worked to grow herself as a leader through the process. Her advice to students to be persistent and hard-working and to 'wear the leadership hat' they are given hit home for our young leaders. Thank you to Lyn for being an inspiration and off the pitch. 

Emma, James, Kevin Hogan, Lyn Larsen, Harry and Roman

Mission News

MOTHER’S DAY (VERY) SPECIAL ASSEMBLY

Please join us for a very special assembly to celebrate the extraordinary women who love and inspire our students every day. Our assembly begins at 2pm on Friday, May 10th.  We hope you can make it!

THE YARNERS

We were delighted to begin our intergenerational group, ‘The Yarners, ’ during Catholic Education Week last term. We look forward to returning next Thursday, 9th May, at 10:55am (the start of lunch). Everyone is welcome to come along and join the fun! Our focus this term is knitting, as we are knitting squares that will be joined together to make blankets for the Vinnies Winter Appeal. Thank you to all our community members who have been busy knitting. All donations of knitted squares are greatly appreciated to add to our blankets! The squares are 30cm x 30cm (or between 45 and 50 stitches) using 8ply on size 5 needles. Squares can be dropped into our school office. Thank you!

CONFIRMATION - TUESDAY 21ST MAY

This is a friendly reminder for all our Confirmation candidates to return their enrolment forms, including the $15 contribution and pizza form, and to continue working on their preparation booklets in their family groups. We look forward to deepening our understanding on Formation Day in preparation to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation that evening. 

Principal's News

Dear St Joseph’s Community

Welcome back after what we hope was a restful holiday break. After an eleven week term, a couple of weeks of rest before we recommence for Term 2 is welcome for staff and students alike. 

I would like to thank our staff and students for the way they finished Term 1. Week 11, celebrating what it means to be a part of our large system of Catholic Education, was a lovely way to finish the term and a reminder of the hard work and sacrifices of those Catholic educators who started and staffed St Joseph’s over the years. We managed to complete our Cross Country on our third attempt (thanks Miss MacDonald and our many parent helpers). We were also fortunate to still have a revised format Community Celebration Day (thanks for organising this Mrs Jones). We look forward to finishing each term with a community celebration throughout the year. 

We look forward to a term full of fun, learning and community spirit and thank our families for their support. 

SCRIPTURE REFLECTION 

In this Sunday’s Gospel, John 15:1-8, Jesus uses the powerful image of the vine and branches to illustrate our need to stay connected to Him for growth and fruitfulness. This analogy is a beautiful reminder of the importance of our connections - both with each other and with our core values. As we navigate through our school year, let's focus on strengthening these bonds. Just like branches that flourish when firmly attached to the vine, we thrive when we are rooted in our community and principles.

You are invited to listen to Bishop Greg’s Homily from Sunday’s Mass.

ANZAC DAY 

On the 25th of April 1915, Australian and New Zealand soldiers were part of the allied expedition seeking to capture the peninsula of Gallipoli. These soldiers became known as Anzacs, and it is these soldiers and all others who have sacrificed in service of our country in wars and conflicts that we commemorated on Thursday last week when we marched to the Alstonville War Memorial. 

These moments of sharing and ritual are what binds our community together and they are important to share with our children. I thank our students and their families for giving up their time to march with our school on Thursday to mark this occasion. It is such a proud moment for our students to see how well-represented they are in the community at this event. 

Congratulations to Eve Aveling from Year 2, whose poem was selected from among all the entries from all local schools, to be the winner of this year’s RSL Poetry Competition. Eve’s beautiful and haunting poem, describing the experiences of the first Anzacs, was recited at last week’s Anzac Day Service in Astonville.

On Monday, we held our school Anzac Day Ceremony. This was an important time to pause and remember the sacrifices of these soldiers so many years ago. We were fortunate to have Mr John Gordon and Mr John Porter from the Alstonville Sub Branch of the RSL attending to share his thoughts on the significance of Anzac Day. A huge thank you to Ms Kingsford for her work in preparing our Anzac Day Ceremony. 

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR ANZAC DAY WRITING COMPETITION WINNERS

~ Eve Aveling and Tyler Webster~

EVE AVELING - ANZAC POEM

They were soggy.

They were tired.

They had barely any energy left.

Stepping in squelchy mud.

Standing in cold water.

Sweating everywhere.

Friends on the way, carrying the load.

Unsafe.

Distressed.

Anxious.

Terrified.

Friends beside them every day.

Foggy in the forest.

Trying to find their way.

They felt disgusted.

Burning hot sun.

On this mission trying to stick together but they already lost a friend.

Our soldiers fought for our country so we could be safe.

Thank you for a wonderful place to call home.

TYLER WEBSTER - ANZAC DAY

Buildings injured and torn, smoke filled the sky, painting it black, debris swallowed the ground. Rain falls filling the trenches that were dug by soldiers. It used to be perfect here till they came. They came with tanks, they came with planes, they came with men. We stood no chance. Our men fought with great honour. Through storms and heat they tried to protect our country but it was worthless. Every time we drove them off they came back with double the reinforcements, still our men fought. Soon they had eradicated our defences and they claimed our land. But we still didn’t give up. We eventually gained the help of other countries and swore that we’d fight for our country if it’s the last thing we do. So we led our allies to the battlefield and it started all over. It began to rain, making it hard for the men to hold onto their weapons. Gunshot echoed around the battlefield and men fell. The chaos that was brewing between countries began to seize and the countries agreed to end the war. Men were cheering and celebrating at the sound of the bugle. The war was finally over.

PARENT ASSEMBLY CONFERENCE

The Parent Assembly Team from Diocese of Lismore Catholic Schools is currently advertising their conference - Your Child: Our Schools, scheduled for Saturday June 15 in Coffs Harbour. The agenda looks excellent and this event is sponsored by the Diocese of Lismore Catholic Schools. I encourage all families to have a look. 

SCHOOL COMMUNITY GROUP TERM 2 MEETING AGENDA AND RSVP

Our Term 2 School Community Group Meeting is scheduled for Monday, 3 June from 6:30 - 7:45 pm in the school staffroom. A huge thank you to Wendy Sawan for volunteering to chair the meeting and to Simone Green for taking notes. A have Anna Moloney presenting on the Zones of Regulation pastoral learning program all of our students are undertaking this year. We also have Julie Parker, Digital Learning Specialist and consultant presenting on how parents can manage screen time with their children; thanks for organising this Wendy. The school will share student feedback on the changes to classroom structures and the whole-school approach to pastoral care and wellbeing being undertaken at school this yeas. There is also an opportunity for parents to share their thoughts on the uniform. 

Here is a link to RSVP for the SCG Meeting.

TELL THEM FROM ME PARENT SURVEY 

In the coming weeks we will be inviting students, teachers and parents to provide feedback on their experience of our school using an online survey. The surveys are an important part of our whole-school evaluation and planning process.

We would like to invite you to complete the Tell Them From Me (TTFM) Partners in Learning survey. As we value the role of parents and carers within our school community we would greatly appreciate your feedback. The information you provide will be used to maintain our commitment to working together in partnership to further improve student learning and wellbeing at St Joseph’s.

The survey is anonymous and will take approximately 20 minutes to complete and will be open from Monday 6 May (Week 2, Term 2) through to Friday 24 May (end of Week 4, Term 2). We will share the survey link early next week.


PRINCIPAL’S APPRAISAL

The Catholic Schools Office has scheduled my first-year contract appraisal as Principal for Tuesday, May 28th. Below you will find a detailed letter from the Appraisal Chair, Mr. Michael Mullaly. Additionally, a survey will soon be distributed to parents through Compass. Your feedback is invaluable to me and will greatly assist in my ongoing development as a leader.

Community News

Attendance Matters

IF YOUR CHILD IS AVOIDING SCHOOL, CONTACT YOUR CHILD’S TEACHER, SO TOGETHER YOU CAN EXPLORE WHAT IS HAPPENING FOR YOUR CHILD. 

If your child is avoiding school, it's crucial to proactively address the issue by contacting your child's teacher. Teachers play a key role in observing and understanding students' behaviours and can collaborate with you to identify and address any challenges your child may be facing.

Share your observations about your child's behaviour and express any concerns you may have. Be open and honest about the challenges your child is facing in attending school regularly.

Collaboratively work with the school and your child to explore possible causes for your child's avoidance of school. This could include academic challenges or social issues. Work together to develop and monitor strategies to address the identified issues.

You can seek advice free from NSW ParentLine 1300 1300 52.

Watch Help! My kid doesn't want to go to school by Maggie Dent.

Sport News

CROSS COUNTRY 

Finally, after many changes of plans due to the weather, our school cross country was run today. Competitive students from ages 12-8 ran a modified course through the playground. Everyone tried their very best. Congratulations to everyone for participating. Our place getters for each age group are listed below. Those going through to Zone will receive information soon.

THANKS MISS MACDONALD FOR ORGANISING A GREAT CROSS COUNTRY!

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Stage News

YEAR 1 WRITING

This term Year 1 students have been writing Super Sentences in InitiaLit. This task required them to describe the dragon. I’m sure you’ll agree that they all did a fantastic job!

Library News

ANZAC WRITING COMPETITION

Any late entries into the writing competition can be sent through to me until Thursday (11 April) afternoon. Please email rosalind.kingsford@lism.catholic.edu.au or drop them into the library.