Thursday, 20 July 2017

Week 1, Term 3, 2017

Welcome back to a new term. This is a very special time of the year for our Year 3's. They are preparing to make their First Reconciliation next week. Please keep them in your prayers.

The most essential step in preparing your child – and yourself – for the Sacrament of Reconciliation is prayer. Through prayer, we join in an intimate conversation with God. We ask Him to open our hearts to Him, and ask for His infinitely merciful forgiveness. Pray with and for your child, asking God to prepare him or her for this great Sacrament (Source:
Congratulations to Kate Cherfi. Kate's name was drawn out as the winner of the end of term parent survey from the Parent Teacher Evening. Kate received a $50 Gift card. Thanks to all parents who completed the survey. The results of the survey will be shared with you in the coming weeks and contribute to us making informed decisions in the future.

Ayda and Willow hold the winning survey
Special thanks to Danny Egan and our Year 3 teacher Kim Whitfield who are coordinating the Composting and Planting activities commencing this week at school. 
Along with our recycling efforts, we hope to help the children learn how to take care of our school and the environment. This links closely to a message to all of us from Pope Francis.

Tom & Fred with their class compost bin

In 2016 Pope Francis wrote an important letter entitled Laudato Si. The main message is about the role we must play in protecting the earth, God's special gift to us. Here is a video to watch with your children to help explain this important message. 

Term 3 clubs
These are the fun clubs being run by our leaders this term.
Footy Card Club
Lego Club
St Pat's has got talent
Planting Club

Teaching and Learning Site
Our teachers have been preparing their newsletters for the term. These have detailed information about learning activities. You can access these on the Learning Community Site at this link.

Uniform Reminder
Below is the girls and boys winter uniform information taken from our school information book. Please ensure your child is looking smart in the correct school uniform. If your child is not in school uniform for a particular reason, a letter of explanation must be sent to school. No responsibility can be taken by the school for lost clothing. All items of clothing should be clearly marked.

Message from the Parish Education Board
As our school continues to grow and prosper, we need to ensure we have a Master Plan for the schools buildings and grounds that guides the changes the school could undertake to meet future needs of the school. This will ensure that any changes are made in a orderly and efficient way. To ensure we have the best Master Plan for St Patricks, the Parish Education Board (PEB) are forming a subcommittee to guide the building of this plan and as such are asking for interested parties to nominate to join this process. Interested ? You may bring some of the following to the process:
  • appropriate skills (e.g. architect, surveying, construction, financial, etc) 
  • be passionate about the built education environment
  • want to contribute to the school (and wider ) community
If this is of interest to you please make contact with Jenny Hawkins (Principal) or Travis Westcott (Board Chair)

Upcoming Parent Seminar

Working with Children Check

Wednesday, 28 June 2017

Week 11, Term 2, 2017

Prayer for Young People
This is a prayer Fr Paul gave out at our last family mass. Let's take a minute to read and reflect as we pray for the young people in your lives.
Good Shepherd, we entrust our young people to Your love and mercy.
Bring to fulfillment all that you desire for their lives.
Through our example and constant encouragement, make them models of prayer and purity, good judgement, selflessness and hope.
Protect them from all evil.
Help them to trust in You and find a home in Your Church.
Never let them doubt that they are loved.
Mary, our heavenly Mother, keep all young people close to your Son Jesus.

Parent/Teacher Interviews Thursday 29th June 
We are looking forward to welcoming you to the parent meetings tomorrow.  (A reminder that all interviews will be conducted in the hall and that children will be dismissed at 1pm.)
This year we are asking that children wait in the foyer area unless they are accompanying their parents into an interview. We do not want children to be outside unsupervised in the playground unless they are part of Camp Australia.
Please arrive a few minutes early as there will be an opportunity to complete a very brief survey while you wait. All surveys will go into a draw for a gift voucher.
As mentioned last week, if you are interested in learning more about the annual SRC feedback, please join me in the staff room for a 5 minute presentation at the following times: 2pm, 3pm, 5pm and 6pm. There will also be a flyer summarising the outcomes available for anyone who is interested.

Thanks to everyone for all of your hard work and support this term.
Have a safe holiday with your families and we look forward to welcoming you back to school on Monday 17th of July.

Term 3 Important Dates

Mon 17th Jul       School resumes
Tues 25th Jul      Reconciliation 3L   2pm & 5pm
Wed 26th Jul       Reconciliation 3O  2pm & 5pm               Education Board Meeting 7pm
Thu 27th Jul        Reconciliation 3W 2pm & 5pm  
Tue  1st  Aug       Confirmation workshop 7.15pm
Wed 9th Aug       Education Board meeting 7pm
Thur 10th Aug     Restorative Practice Parent Night 7pm
Fri  11th Aug       Dendy Athletics
Mon 21st Aug     BOOK WEEK commences
Tue 29th Aug      First Communion Workshop  6.15-7.15pm
Wed 30th Aug     First Communion Workshop  6.15-7.15pm


Thursday, 22 June 2017

Week 10, Term 2, 2017

Feast of the Body and Blood of Christ
Last Sunday was a Family mass. Thank you to all of our families who attended mass. Coming to mass is an opportunity to pray and give thanks for the blessings, gifts and talents God has given to us. It is one way to show how we are always faithful to our loving God. On Sunday we celebrated the Feast of the Body and Blood of Christ.
Take a few minutes to reflect (reflection from Catholic Education Victoria ) on the the gospel reading from  John 6: 51–58. The word of the gospel promises us:
To have life to the full.
To live in Jesus and have Jesus live in us.
To live for the sake of Jesus.
To be the Body of Christ in the world.
To live forever.
Image source link
Engaged and motivated learners always faithful to our loving God
Motivated learners will intrinsically drive their own learning when they are authentically engaged. I was thrilled to meet with some of our Year 5 learners who are actively pursuing their own learning.

Last week Anton, Christian and Jed from 5J and 5M approached me with a few ideas they had jotted down on a notepad during their lunch break. They were keen to raise funds to support the black rhino, an endangered species pursued by poachers for their horns. I suggested that the boys expand on and develop their plans further and then come back to see me.

Anton, Christian and Jed proudly share their plans.
Well, only a few days later, after a busy weekend of work, the boys impressed me with their detailed plans going forward. They provided me with a personalised copy of their plans which included costings, games, activities, resources, designs and a list of other students and family members who are all interested in contributing to the black rhino cause. The boys shared their plans with passion and enthusiasm and I am looking forward to supporting the boys to bring their ideas to life.

I wish to commend Anton, Christian and Jed for taking the initiative to pursue their interests and we look forward to sharing the progress of their plans with our school community. These boys are indeed showing us how to live our St Pat's vision of being engaged and motivated learners always faithful to our loving God.
Jed's young sister Skye in 2T was asked to draw a rhino for their project
and more engaged and motivated learners .....
There were more engaged and motivated learners sharing their biome projects and dioramas at the Yr 3 and Yr 4 showcases of their learning this week. Well done to all learners who presented their projects with passion and joy. Thanks to our wonderful teachers for working hard to engage and motivate all learners at St Pat's. Thanks to our parent community for supporting our children with their home learning activities and for coming to view our learners in action in the hall.


Parent/Teacher Interviews Thursday 29th June and feedback from 2016 surveys
We are looking forward to welcoming you to the parent meetings on Thursday. The meetings will take place in the hall. Please arrive a few minutes early as there will be an opportunity to complete a very brief survey while you wait. All surveys will go into a draw for a gift voucher.

At our recent Parish Education Board meeting we discussed the outcomes of the annual online Insight SRC survey. This survey is completed by senior students, staff and parents. The 2017 surveys will be completed in September. The outcomes of the surveys help guide our School Improvement Plan going forward. It was suggested that I share a 5 minute presentation with parents to inform you of the 2016 survey results and any future actions. If you are interested in learning more, please join me in the staff room for a 5 minute presentation on Thursday 29th June at the following times: 2pm, 3pm, 5pm and 6pm. I will also have a flyer summarising the outcomes available for anyone who is interested.

POPE Parents as Open Partners in Education feedback
Here is a link to the latest information from the POPE forum. The main topic of interest has been school camps.

We were very saddened earlier this week to hear about the sudden passing of Damien O'Shea on the weekend.  The O'Shea family are a highly respected St Patrick's family and  have been very active within the local community, none more so than here at St Pats where Damien was a member of the Education Board for a number of years, Raechel - President of the Parent's & Friends, and Ben and Darcy attended school.   Our thoughts and prayers are with the entire O'Shea family at this time.



Fri 23rd June       Reports home
Thur 29th June    Parent/Teacher Interviews
Fri 30th June       End of term 2. Children dismissed @ 2pm.

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Week 9, Term 2, 2017

Patcare: Living our vision to be "always faithful to our loving God "
Yesterday we received a lovely thank you email from one of our school families who have been supported by our St Pat's Patcare initiative. As many of you will know, Patcare is coordinated by members of our Parents and Friends to supply meals for our families when a need arises.
Our school motto and vision ask us to be "always faithful to our loving God". Supporting the Patcare initiative is one way for you as parents to help bring this vision to life. To be able to contribute to reaching out and helping others through donating meals is a way to show our faith and love for others. Here is the lovely message from one of our school families:

As a family of St Pats, we would like to say a big thank you to Patcare for their amazing support over the past few months. Whilst dealing with a serious illness in the family, we were unexpectedly provided with a meal or two each week by Patcare which greatly assisted our family during this time.
We would like to encourage all families to assist with a meal or donate $20 for a Laurel and Hearty meal, as it is truly a very special support service provided by the school and our very generous families. It is a small way to to show your support and one day, like us, you may benefit from Patcare’s generosity.
Thank you again, a family from St Pats!

Reconciliation Prayer
This was the opening prayer from our recent Reconciliation Workshops last week:

We thank you God for the gift of Reconciliation. You forgive us even before we ask. You know us and You love us always. Lord, open our hearts to the gift of Reconciliation. Help us to recognise how special this sacrament is in our lives. Teach us how to forgive and to ask for forgiveness, and how to model reconciliation in all our actions. Jesus' commandment "Love one Another as I have loved you," is a reminder for us to treat each other with respect, compassion and love.

Year 3 Reconciliation display

Vision Posters - Engaged and motivated learners always faithful to our loving God

Last week I spent a half hour session with a number our classes across the school. We had a chance to focus on our school vision statement and many of the children designed posters to reflect the meaning of the vision.
There were many excellent posters. This illustration by Zoe B in 3L was one that definitely stood out from the others. The posters will be displayed around the school.

Parent teacher interviews
Thanks for your patience with the PTO booking system and the technical challenges early this week.
We look forward to meeting with you on Thursday 29th June. Reports will go home on Friday 23rd June.
This year, all of the interviews will take place in our centrally located hall. This will mean that families won't have to spend time walking around the school to visit classrooms. You will be able to wait in a special area outside the hall before your meetings take place. 

POPE Parents as Open Partners in Education
Come and join us this Friday morning after you drop the children off for a catch up around the following topics - parent interviews and camps as well as any other topics you wish to discuss. Everyone is welcome. We will meet in the staffroom. You can access minutes from our previous discussions at this link.

St John Vianney's staff visit St Patrick's
Last Friday, teachers from St John Vianney's school in Parkdale came to meet with and observe our teachers. They had heard about the wonderful work that we do here around Mindfulness, Circle Time. Growth Mindset and building self-esteem and resilience. Thanks to all of our staff and students who welcomed our visitors and were willing to share our St Pat's good practices. Our doors are always open to welcome and share with families and colleagues.
Liz Hills sharing Social Skills information with our visitors

Engaged and motivated learners at St Pat's - Biomes
What are Biomes ? Biomes are very large ecological areas on the earth’s surface, with fauna and flora adapting to their environment. Biomes are often defined by abiotic factors such as climate, relief, geology, soils and vegetation. Our Year 3 and 4's are excited to share their biome dioramas, posters and information with you at a showcase of learning on Tuesday 20th June for Year 3 and Thursday 22nd June for Year 4.

Musical Showcase Invitation
Our children are fortunate to be taught by Marg O'Dwyer, our specialist music teacher. Due to the favourable response to last year's musical showcase of learning, Marg is holding another one on Monday 26th June. Here is the invitation from Marg.

Musical Showcase of Learning Semester 1 2017

 Our Beautiful World

You are invited to attend a short concert to see your child/ren perform items they have been learning this Semester in music.
Date: Monday June 26th
Venue: School Hall
Time: There will be two concerts. Please check below to see when your child is performing.
You are most welcome to stay for both concerts if you have one or more children performing in each one.
Concert 1 at 2pm:- 2M, 4V, 5J and 6H to perform
Concert 2 at 2.45pm:- 2T, 4P, 5M and 6L to perform
Hope to see you there!
Marg O’Dwyer
Music Teacher

Any students absent for one week or longer are to kindly notify the principal for our school records.

There is a school closure day on Wednesday 21st June.
School will finish early at 1pm on Thursday 29th June for Parent Interviews.


Wed 21st June    School Closure Day
Fri 23rd June       Reports home
Thur 29th June    Parent/Teacher Interviews
Fri 30th June       End of term 2. Children dismissed @ 2pm.

Please support our school by collecting the Earn and Learn Stickers at your local Woolies, and asking family, friends and neighbours to help out too.

Sticker sheets are available at Woolies, or just send along your stickers and we’ll attach them.

In the past, we have collected enough stickers to purchase thousands of dollars of games, sports equipment and curriculum supplies. Please help us do the same this year.


Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Week 8, Term 2, 2017

The Christian holiday of Pentecost, celebrated on the fiftieth day after Easter, commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and other followers of Jesus Christ while they were in Jerusalem celebrating the Feast of Weeks, as described in the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 2:1–31)
In this community of St Patrick’s school, there are many different gifts. Each person, because of their uniqueness, brings something special. Take a few moments to reflect on what particular gift you bring to this community. Let us always value and appreciate the gifts that each person brings to our community. We thank the gift of the Holy Spirit who enables us to share our gifts and shine. Amen.

Sacrament of Reconciliation
This week, the Year 3's and their parents will be attending workshops in preparation for making the Sacrament of Reconciliation. We thank Anne Mullan, Fr Paul Newton and the children's class teachers for helping the children to prepare for this important next step on their faith journey.

It is important that all children arrive at school ready to start the day by 8:55am. There is research to show that children continually late to school can suffer from a number of factors in the primary years such as: low achievement, social criticism, anxiety and stress. This can sometimes lead to poor attendance and low graduation rates during the latter years of education. Here is an interesting article about this.
We need to support our children to be punctual. Any children late to the office will need to come into the office with their parent. The parent is expected to sign their children in to enable them to move straight to class and avoid further delays. Regular lateness will be followed up by the principal with a phone call or meeting arranged with the parents. If you need help to get your child to school on time, then please talk to us.

Salesian College Visit
Our Year 3 and 4's were invited to watch some plays at Salesian College last week. Here are some photos and stories from children in 4V from the visit.

Working Bee Thank you
Thanks to Danny Egan and the forty-five families who helped with the Term 2 working bee last weekend. We appreciate your time and dedication to our school.


In recognition of the changing needs of today’s students CDF has relaunched the school savings program. 
Today’s students live in a high-tech world. Coins, notes & paper passbook accounts have become ‘tap & go’ and App based mobile payments. Alongside this rapid technological change CDF is facing a more rigorous Government regulatory environment. Balancing all of these factors, they are making changes to create an even better experience for students. 
They are now offering students a 31 Day Mission Saver Account. The new CDF 31 Day Mission Saver for Students is as the name suggests a savings account with a minimum of 31 days notice required to withdraw funds. It is a wholly online savings account that parents (or other adults such as grandparents who set up an account for the student) can view at any time online via secure password access. The application process, including the ID ‘check’ can also be completed online. This new account will pay a bonus for regular savings. To apply for a 31 Day Mission Saver please click here. 
If you have children who have a traditional passbook, they are  welcome to transition to this account at anytime by filling in the form online (note while they can nominate to transfer the balance from their traditional CDF passbook savings account to the new 31 Day Mission Saver for Students, we do need them to fill out this form due to changes in Government regulation). click here. 
If instead of transferring to the new 31 Day Mission Saver you’d like your child’s contribution refunded, please contact CDF.
On behalf of CDF we’d like to thank everyone for their support for the program, and apologies for any inconvenience this change may cause.

Don't forget to order the new Entertainment book for 2017-2018. Purchasing the book through school is a great way to help with our fundraising. The latest edition is available to view at the school office and all orders can be placed through Mary Hogan (Charlotte in 5M) via email or 0414 707 398 or click on the link below



Fri 16th June       Dendy Football Lightening Premiership
Wed 21st June    School Closure Day
Fri 23rd June       Reports home
Thur 29th June    Parent/Teacher Interviews
Fri 30th June       End of term 2. Children dismissed @ 2pm.

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Week 7, Term 2, 2017

A prayer for National Reconciliation Week

Lord, open up our hearts so that we may hear the message you teach of a world in which the wrongs of the past are recognised - a world in which a reconciled people walk and talk together sharing stories; a world in which all burn with the desire to have your peace and justice reign. We ask this in Jesus’ name.


Learning Community Site
All Term 2 timetables and newsletters can be accessed on the site. Just go to the tab for your child's class.

Some of the many learning activities on the site
Parents as learning partners - Learning Potential Website
Research indicates that ongoing parental involvement in children’s learning reaps benefits in many ways, including shaping positive attitudes to learning and supporting student achievement.
Education Services Australia have released a range of resources designed to enrich learning in the home. The ‘learning potential’ resources provide a range of literacy and numeracy activities for parents to explore with primary school children. There are some useful, practical resources which support children in the home learning environment.
Here is the link to the site

Leadership Profile: Mrs Liz Hills

I’m delighted to share with you a little about my role here at St Patrick’s. Officially I have two titles: Deputy Principal and Learning and Teaching Leader. As Deputy Principal, I work closely with the School’s Leadership Team to support the school community- students, parents and teachers- in the everyday running of the school, and to ensure that the Vision of St Patrick’s is enacted. I am always heartened to see the courteous, warm and generous ways that students interact with each other, and support each other in social and learning situations. I often chat with parents who are concerned about their children, and endeavour to assist them to access any support services that may be required.

As Learning and Teaching Leader I oversee the Curriculum content that your children undertake in their classrooms each day. As a school we aim to ensure that children are engaged and motivated, always faithful to our loving God. The best part of every day is the time I spend working with groups of children to support or extend them academically. I feel very fortunate to work with a group of dedicated and committed teachers, who are always seeking to improve their practice, and to cater to the diverse needs in each classroom setting.

Uniform Additions.
We are Alice M and Ivy C and we’re in 4P.   At the start of the term we went to Mrs Hills and asked if we could change the girl’s winter uniform. We wanted to change the uniform so that was better for sport, not as heavy and easier to be active in. (We also don’t have to worry when we're upside down!) Mrs Hills talked with the uniform suppliers and came up with some options, and shared them with us. So if you want to get your culottes and/or pants, like our Year 2 models Juliet and Cori, they are available at PSW.  Now the girls have three options of uniform to choose from. We can wear the tunic, pants or culottes (shorts). All of them are worn with the school shirt with the Peter Pan collar and the school jumper.

Footnote: Congratulations to Alice and Ivy for enacting change at our school through discussion and thoughtful debate, and for addressing their ideas via appropriate channels. A great result!

St Pat’s Cafe is looking for volunteers to regularly provide food for our Thursday evening gatherings. If you would like to help out by joining a monthly roster, please contact Gabby Paroli (from St. Pat’s PS) on 0408523502 or
You are still encouraged to bring a plate anytime you join us, but the roster will help us to ensure we have a good balance of food each week.

Don't forget to order the new Entertainment book for 2017-2018. Purchasing the book through school is a great way to help with our fundraising. The latest edition is available to view at the school office and all orders can be placed through Mary Hogan (Charlotte in 5M) via email or 0414 707 398 or click on the link below


Fri 16th June       Dendy Football Lightening Premiership
Wed 21st June    School Closure Day
Fri 23rd June       Reports home
Thur 29th June    Parent/Teacher Interviews
Fri 30th June       End of term 2. Children dismissed @ 2pm.


Thursday, 25 May 2017

Week 6, Term 2 2017

Family Mass
Thanks to our families who supported our Family Mass on Sunday. It was great to see Fr Paul back leading the mass as he continues to recover from his accident.
Wednesday the 24th May was the feast of Our Lady, Help of Christians, the patron saint of Australia.
Image source:
Here is a special prayer to say with your family to Our Lady Help of the Christians during the month of May.
Creator God, you made this great land of Australia and placed us under the patronage of Mary. May we look to her for inspiration so that we might create a community based on justice, compassion and mercy. We ask this prayer through Jesus, your Son. Amen.
May we also pray for the families who lost their loved ones in the tragic Manchester Arena attack.

Engaged and motivated learners: Fabulous Felting
Our Year 6's were busy making felted wool in art with our Art Specialist teacher Karin Dornbierer during the week. The felting process requires heat, moisture and friction as well as patience and expertise. Karin will be going on leave towards the end of June and will be going to Uganda. She will be taking the felting with her as part of a special project. Karin will work with children from a Disabled Community School to create necklaces from the felt. The necklaces will be brought back to sell and the proceeds will go back to the Uganda to support future art programmes at the school. While Karin is on leave, Di Tarranto will be filling in as the specialist art teacher

Engaged and motivated learners: Heritage Victoria
Our Preps and Year 1's were fortunate to work with Heritage Victoria who were trialing their newly designed primary school Artifact Kits with our children. This connects with the history unit the children engaged with last term. Heritage Victoria will donate some of the Artifact Kits to our school as resources to be used in the future.

Working Bee
The next Working Bee will be Saturday 3rd June from 12 noon to 4pm. Thanks to Danny Egan for coordinating our Working Bee. There are more details in the recent P & F Newsletter. We appreciate your help and support for our school.

Information from Catholic education Melbourne around future funding of Catholic Schools
Over the past few weeks, there has been a lot of information in the media about the Turnbull Government’s Quality Schools funding package and its impact on Catholic school fees.
The package proposed by the Government is a 10-year funding model, which will see significant changes to how Catholic schools are funded in the future.
Like the majority of Catholic schools, our school aims to be open and accessible to all families seeking a Catholic education. That means we aim to be affordable as well.
One of the big impacts of the Turnbull Government’s funding package is that Catholic school fees will have to rise.
This won’t happen tomorrow, but over the next 10 years, cuts to school funding will mean fees will gradually increase.
Catholic education leaders across Australia have been working hard to make sure the Government and the Opposition understand that our students will be disadvantaged by the funding model.
Everything is being done to make sure the Turnbull Government’s funding package does not become law.
That’s where our community comes in. In coming weeks, please keep an eye out in the school newsletter  for information about how you can add your voice to help prevent unreasonable fee increases.
We need to step up. Unreasonable fee increases are only a possibility at this stage – not a certainty. Parents in nearly 500 other Catholic schools in Victoria have also been asked to get ready and join the campaign.
With your help, we can make sure our politicians in Canberra are listening to Catholic schools.


Don't forget to order the new Entertainment book  for 2017-2018. Purchasing the book through school is a great way to help with our fundraising. The latest edition is available to view at the school office and all orders can be placed through Mary Hogan (Charlotte in 5M) via email or 0414 707 398


Fri 16th June Dendy Football Lightening Premiership
Wed 21st June School Closure Day
Fri 23rd June Reports home
Thur 29th June Parent/Teacher Interviews
Fri 30th June End of term 2. Children dismissed @ 2pm.