Term 1 Week 7 Monday 14th March
Our Prayer This Week
We pray for the work of Caritas
Australia through Project Compassion.
We pray also for greater respect for the
environment. May we care deeply for
the Earth that God has entrusted to our
care. May we realise that we are on
From the Principal
I hope that everyone has enjoyed the long weekend. A friend pointed out to me on the weekend that this is perhaps the longest stretch that we have enjoyed uninterrupted schooling for a long time, so I'm sure many of us have used the extra day as a chance to recharge.
A reminder that our first school closure day is this Wednesday so that our staff can engage in emergency management training. I realise that this date is not ideal but unfortunately, we were tied to the dates that the trainers have available.
I'll be in Horsham Thursday and Friday this week as part of the termly Diocesan Leaders meetings.
Kind regards, Stacey Atkins
Congratulations to the Dennis family who welcomed Lennox Walter last week. William and Alex are thrilled to add another brother to the family.
A big thank you to everyone who contributed to the success of our Athletics Day. It is definitely a team effort with each contribution valued and appreciated.
A special thank you to Brianna Barr and Airlie Cole who worked extremely hard behind the scenes to make sure that everything was organised. Thanks to the parents and staff who supported the children on the day, ran events and provided encouragement. Thank you to the students of St Colman's who gave it their best effort, cheered each other on and participated with a positive attitude.
Special congratulations to those children who were named age champions on the day. Noah McKenzie, Gus Carmody, Ryan McKenzie and Piper Furness-Tuffnell. A number of children will also qualify for the next stage. This will be announced shortly.
Supporting those in need
Diocese of Lismore 2022 Flood Appeal.
If you're looking for a way to support the schools and parishes of Lismore please consider.
The Diocese of Lismore is sincerely grateful for the extraordinary amounts of offers for support for families and schools impacted by floods and your ongoing prayers. To ensure a coordinated response, it is requested that all donations be channelled through Bishop Greg's Diocese of Lismore 2022 Flood Appeal found here at https://www.lismorediocese.org.
It would be greatly appreciated that all fundraising efforts support this appeal.
Account No: 1061 5829
Account Name: DOL Flood Appeal
While offers of physical resources and equipment are appreciated, unfortunately there is nowhere to store, sort and distribute such forms of generosity.
Caritas Australia Partnership with Caritas Ukraine.
Caritas Australia is one of the few NGOs in Australia with a direct partner on the ground in Ukraine.
Caritas Australia forms a longstanding partnership with Caritas Ukraine, who is currently providing emergency support to internally displaced persons.
The escalating violence in Ukraine is rapidly becoming a dire humanitarian crisis.
Over 2 million people have fled their homes in Ukraine, and there have been at least 1,335 civilian casualties.
The Caritas Ukraine Appeal provides essential support to those in need, including;
- Emergency food and water.
- Hygiene kits.
- Psychological counselling.
If you or your school would like to contribute directly to Ukraine through their fundraising measures, learn more and donate to the Caritas Australia Ukraine Crisis Appeal by visting the webpage at Ukraine | Caritas Australia.
The Yes Brain Child
Thanks to Clare for providing this information.
Kids are beautiful gifts. Deep down we know it, but sometimes, due to the real challenges of raising children, we forget.
As parents, we want our kids to have happiness, academic success, social skills, emotional strength and a strong sense of self. Drs. Daniel Siegel and Tina Payne Bryson (2018) noted that parents wanted to help their children become people who could make good decision and handle themselves well even when life was challenging. They wanted them to care for others but also stand up for themselves. They wanted them to be independent and enjoy rewarding relationships. They also wanted them to avoid melting down when things didn’t go their way.
The insights above are from “The Yes Brain Child”, (Siegel & Bryson, 2018) which demonstrates how to help children embrace life with all of its challenges, through developing a ‘Yes Brain’ which generates four key characteristics:
Balance: the ability to manage emotions and behaviour, so kids are less likely to flip their lids and lose control.
Resilience: the ability to bounce back when life’s inevitable problems and struggles arise.
Insight: the ability to look within and understand themselves, then use what they learn to make good decisions and be more in control of their lives.
Empathy: the ability to understand the perspectives of another, then care enough to take action to make things better when appropriate.
Over the next few weeks there will be insights shared to help kids say yes to the world by encouraging them to open their minds to new challenges, new opportunities, to who they already are, and all they can become by giving them a ‘Yes Brain’.
Siegel, D. J., & Bryson, T. P. (2018). The yes brain: How to cultivate courage, curiosity, and resilience in your child. New York: Bantam.
Project Compassion 3rd Week of Lent
Exodus 3:1-8, 13-15 | 1 Cor 10:1-6, 10-12 | Luke 13:1-9
Sometimes you hear Indigenous people refer to Jesus as a ‘person of Country’. What
might this mean? It is hard to imagine the Gospels without the connection of Jesus to the
sea, the river, the desert, the fields and the mountain. His teaching often featured seeds
and birds and sheep and corn. In today’s Gospel, we hear the parable of the fig tree. The
impatient person wants to cut it down. A wiser person is prepared to work with nature by
putting manure on the tree and looking after it. This is a story of growth. God is creative.
God is patient with us. God gives us another chance.
We have so much to learn from the depth and resilience of Australian Indigenous culture
and spirituality, both of which are intimately linked to Country. This week, Project
Compassion features the story of Janice, a Wagilak woman from the Northern Territory.
Janice, who lives in a remote community, is part of the Djilpin Arts Aboriginal Corporation,
supported by Caritas Australia. Janice is among those overcoming many obstacles to
keeping their culture strong. She does this through dance. She honours the generations
who have come before her and taught their community how to respect the land and live in
harmony with it. Our response to Project Compassion is providing practical support for the
blossoming of Indigenous culture for all future generations.
In today’s reading, Moses is in the wilderness, a place of surprising possibilities. Like the
Australian landscape, the wilderness in scripture is subtle; it is a place of encounter with
God. Moses thinks he is having a regular day in the family business, looking after his
father-in-law’s sheep. But a voice comes from a bush that is blazing without being burnt
up. The voice tells Moses to take off his shoes because ‘the place on which you stand is
holy ground.’ This is the beginning of the freedom story of his people, the start of their
journey out of captivity.
May our journey to the freedom God wants for us also begin with the realisation that we
too are standing on Holy Ground. God calls us all to be people of Country.
Janice poses for a photograph near Djilpin Arts on Jawoyn Country in Arnhem Land, Australia. Photo: Richard Wainwright
A reminder to contact Stacey or Rosie if your child will be participating in our sacramental program or if you require more information.
Dear parents and carers,
Important feedback on the rapid antigen testing (RAT) program is being sought from our school community through a short survey that has been developed by the Department of Health.
RATs are helping students and staff to safely return to school and ensure positive cases are identified as quickly as possible. All RATs ordered by the Victorian government for schools are effective in detecting coronavirus (COVID-19) variants, including Omicron.
To help evaluate and improve the roll-out of the program to schools and ensure that staff and students have the required support, a short survey is being sent to parents at a sample of Victorian schools.
Our school has been selected to complete the survey from Tuesday 15 March 2022. The survey is voluntary and anonymous. Our school will have no access to your individual data or responses. The link to the survey is here:
You are asked to complete the survey by 5.00pm Sunday 20 March 2022.
West Street works
These works have not started as quickly as we thought, but rumour has it that there has been some action today! Stay tuned for further updates.
During this time buses will pick up/drop off on Townsend St near the back gate.
Positive Start Initiative
The Victorian Government has provided information on the Positive Start in 2022 initiative, which offers students in all low-fee Catholic schools a chance to reconnect with peers and enjoy the kinds of activities that many missed out on over the past two years.
Under this initiative, eligible families have the opportunity to book holiday camps for children free of charge.
To be eligible for free holiday camps, students must meet one or more of the following criteria:
- attend a school that experienced closures of five days or more due to COVID-19 in 2021
- have an approved Camps, Sports and Excursions Fund (CSEF) application for 2022
- have a parent who holds a valid means-tested concession card
- are Indigenous students
- reside in out-of-home care (temporary or permanent)
- are from a refugee background
- are students with a disability.
The letter linked below gives more detailed information regarding this initiative. Families must register their interest by Friday 25 March 2022 to be considered.
Accessing School Reports
Some parents have reported that they have not been able to access their child's school reports in PAM.
It is unclear whether there is an issue with the school or with individual peoples phones.
Could you please login to your PAM account and click on the student name then in the Profile Menu, scroll down to "Assessment Reports" and press done. You should be able to see a list of PDF's for all past reports. Open the PDF to read the report. If you are unable to open the PDF, please contact Jane or Stacey.
Medical Details on PAM
It is important to keep your child's Medical Details up to date in PAM. We use this information to check that we have any medications and instructions needed for your child on a regular basis or in the case of emergency.
If there is any change to your child's medication, you need to update PAM as well as talk to us about any medication we need to have on hand.
It is particularly important to have Asthma plans up to date and if your child no longer needs this, we need to know that too.
Second Hand Uniform
If anyone has any old uniform that is no longer part of the school uniform at home, you are encouraged to bring it in to the school by Friday 25th March. The uniform will be sent to Timor-Leste to be distributed to school children who do not have their own school uniform. Please only send in items that are still in good order.
Any items of the current uniform that are no longer required can be offerred for sale on the school Facebook page. Please ask at the office for details.
Footy Tipping Competition 2022
Footy starts THIS WEEK!
It would be great if all families could enter the Footy Tipping this year. The cost has been reduced to $20 for adults and $10 for kids. This year, all money will go into the prize pool so this is GREAT VALUE!
See the attached flyer for details.
Enter via the link below
Key Dates for the Diary
16th March- School Closure Day
23rd March- Mercy Regional College Open Day
29th March- School Photos
30th March- Sacrament of Forgiveness, 5.30pm
31st March-PSGs and SAC Meeting
1st April- District Athletics
4th April- Senior class visit to MRC O'Keeffe Campus
6th April- Footy Clinics at school
8th April- Final Day of Term
25th April Anzac Day
26th April Term 2 commences
2nd May- School Closure: Parent Engagement with Tony Dalton
23rd May- School Closure: Literacy focus
1st August- School Closure: Literacy Pedagogy
8th September- School Closure: Liturgy (Religious Education)
TBC: First Aid closure day to update CPR and other First Aid requirements.
Our Schoolzine calendar is now operational so there's numerous dates available on the app.
Please find following, an extensive letter outlining the current COVID arrangements. This will remain here in case you need to refer to anything. Some key points include things we are doing to protect our community:
- Mask wearing for all staff and Grade 2-6 students is compulsory. It is highly encouraged for all other children. Students must provide their own masks.
- Masks are required for ALL children who travel on a bus.
- Visitors must check in via the QR code and be vaccinated.
- RATs have been delivered with each member of the community being invited to test themselves twice a week. The school must be notified if there is a positive case. The school will inform the community if there is a positive case. Head to this link for a video on how to conduct a RAT. https://youtu.be/AyrggazYk_0
Please contact me at school if you have any concerns or queries. The new school mobile number is 0409 539 167.
Mercy Regional College Open Day
Please follow the link to register your attendance at the MRC Open Day.
Emergency food relief
EMERGENCY FOOD RELIEF
Mortlake Community Health Centre - 23 Boundary Rd, Mortlake
The THIRD Thursday of every month from 1:00pm – 3:00pm
The emergency relief consists of food packages, prescription vouchers and social support to people who are in need financially and emotionally through the Mortlake Community Health Centre.
All are welcome when the need arises and confidentiality and discretion are assured.
For bookings, phone Louise on 0458 750 351.
Auskick kicks off in Mortlake on May 1st. Please see the flyer for details on how to register. Contact Jess Dennis on 0422 808107 for details.
Mass is celebrated at St Colman's every Sunday at 9am. All welcome.