2023 Term 3 Week 10
Dear Parents and Carers,
What a busy and successful term we have had thanks to all of our staff who consistently go above and beyond to provide opportunities for our students.
Students have been involved in some rich learning experiences this term with some of the highlights being our Writers Festival, Book Week, Science Week, Stage 3 attending the Byron Writers Festival, Infants Excursions within the local community, Stage 3 Camp to Lake Ainsworth and even a visit from the annual Ride for Sick Kids. We have also been blessed to be able to welcome in many members of the wider school community for Father’s Day, Grandparents Day and St Mary’s Feast Day celebrations.
We have seen many of our students excel in their chosen sporting fields including our Year 6 Netball Team who made it to the Regional Finals for the NSW State Cup, our representatives who played in the Dudley Jones Tennis Competition as well as the tennis players who took out the Grafton event of the Todd Woodbridge Cup and have qualified to compete in the next round.
Congratulations to William Bryant, Arlie Brotherson, Sophia Hearfield, Addison Peppernell, Felipe Correa da Rosa, Amelia Smith, Maeve Thompson and Cooper Hearfield. We wish them luck in the Todd Woodbridge Cup.
We have also nurtured a number of students in our school community as they have grown in their faith through celebrating the Sacraments of First Reconciliation and Holy Communion.
On Wednesday 13th September a number of students in our school community received the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Fr Joe joined the students at school so they could receive this sacrament of healing and remind them that just as God is merciful, so too can the students show mercy as a strength of character. It was such a special day for these students who were very well prepared to receive the sacrament thanks to Mrs Brown.
Some of our students were selected in the shortlist for the 2023 Long Way Home story competition. We can’t wait to see Cooper Stuart, Lilly Mulqueen, Freya Thompson, Sophie Sutherland and Sienna Patrick’s published stories in this year’s edition of Stories from the Clarence Valley.
On one occasion, our school was overrun by a group of 100 year olds who celebrated completing 100 days of learning and fun in Kindergarten! We all wore our PJs to school and together, managed to raise over $445 for the St Vincent de Paul Winter Appeal PJ Day.
Ms Jansen welcomed a healthy baby boy, Vic John, on Friday 15th September. Both Maartje and Vic are doing well and we are sure Pippa is a very helpful big sister. We wish Maartje and her family all the best as they soak up the newborn bubble and adjust to life as a family of 4.
Term 4 is looking just as busy with many upcoming events including Socktober, Jacaranda events and the commencement of our Mini Mary’s program.
Just a reminder that Monday 9 October is an allocated staff development (pupil free) day. Students commence Term 4 on Tuesday 10 October.
Our P&F Disco is just around the corner! Pencil in the date Week 2 Tuesday 17th October at 5:30pm.
Our school is once again participating in Socktober, an inspiring initiative of Catholic Mission. The Socktober event day is set for Week 1 Friday 13th October. If you have not already, you can register your child to start fundraising by following the link previously shared via the COMPASS App.
The Jacaranda Festival occurs early in Term 4. Please keep in mind the following dates:
Saturday 28 October 9am - Parade of Youth & Banner Competition
Thursday 2 November (school closed) Jacaranda Thursday
Saturday 4 November 5pm - Float procession
Please check COMPASS for further information about Jacaranda and other upcoming events closer to the dates.
Have a safe holiday
Jas and Hannah
Please note the following pupil free days:
Monday 9 October - Term 4 Week 1
Friday 3 November - Term 4 Week 4
The final day of the 2023 school year for students is: Friday 15 December - Term 4 Week 10
St Mary’s Primary 2023 Important Dates
(subject to change please check our website for calendar updates)
Monday 9 October - Staff PL day - Pupil Free Day
Wednesday 11 October - Billy G’s Gourmet Cookie Dough deliveries are expected
Friday 13 October - Socktober
Tuesday 17 October - P and F Disco 5.30pm start
Wednesday 18 and Thursday 19 October - CSO Band - Wildfire visit
Friday 27 October - World Teacher’s Day in Australia
Friday 27 October - Day for Daniel - Red dress up day
Thursday 2 November - Jacaranda Thursday - school closed
Friday 3 November - Staff PL day - Pupil Free Day
Friday 10 November - Remembrance Day liturgy 10.35am start
Tuesday 21 November - Year 5 Leadership speeches
Wednesday 6 December - Year 6 Graduation dinner (Change of Date)
Thursday 7 December - End of Year Mass and Awards ceremony
Friday 8 December - Stage party and colour run; class rewards day; and Christmas Shirt day.
Thursday 14 December - Year 6 fun day
Friday 15 December - Year 6 farewell assembly and last day of the year for students.
Tennis - Todd Woodbridge Cup
The second round of the Todd Woodbridge Cup for Stage 2 students will be held in Byron Bay on Friday of week 1 Term 4. As earlier reported, the Squad were victorious in the first round draw which was held at Junction Hill. Sophia Hearfield, Addison Peppernell, Emily Smith, Maeve Thompson, Felipe de Rosa, John Graham, Cooper Hearfield and Arlie Brotherson will represent St Mary’s at this tournament. A big thank you to Sam Hearfield who has been training the squad after school. Well done on all your efforts so far and we wish you the best of luck on the day.
St Mary’s Senior Netball team travelled to Casino last week and played in the Netball NSW Schools Cup, Far North Coast Regional finals.
A report from Stella Skeels and Olivia Peppernell
We played Yamba first and won 12-4.
Then we played Holy Family, Skennars Head and won 8-4.
Then we played Bilambil and won 7-4.
We came first in our pool so we played semi’s against St Carthages and sadly lost 14-5
So we then played 3rd and 4th against SMP Casino and lost 7-5.
So we came 4th overall out of 11 teams.
Well done to all those involved, we’re sure that Netball was the winner on the day!
Healthy Lunch Box Ideas
- If your child is arriving to the school after 8:45am please sign them in at the office.
- Please use Compass to record full day absentees. Partial absences are recorded by staff when students are signed in and out of the office.
- Students who leave a school event early will have a partial absence recorded.
- A medical certificate or other documentation may be requested where frequent absences due to illness occur.
- Generally, extended leave (greater than 10 days) during the school term would not be approved. These absences are recorded on the roll as unjustified and a completed Form 01 Extended Leave Notification Travel/Other Greater than 10 Days is required.
- In exceptional circumstances parents may complete an Form 02 Approved Extended Leave Application - Travel/Other Greater than 10 Days for consideration by the Principal, explaining why an absence for extended leave is in the best educational interest of the student. The Principal may decline or accept this application.
St Mary's Primary School P&F
The P&F are an important group within our school. We understand that it is not always possible to attend the meetings due to time restraints of family and work. We value everyone's thoughts and ideas, and therefore invite parents to use the link below to share agenda items with us.
The Australian Federal Police (AFP) are urging families to be proactive this school year and update the privacy settings on children’s devices to help prevent predators from contacting them online.
The AFP-led ThinkUKnow program – Australia’s first and only nationally delivered, law enforcement-led online safety program – has produced guides for parents and carers.
- Gaming devices and what you need to know
- Parent and carer social media starter kit
For more information, visit this website.
Parent Guide to DIBELS Assessment (Primary)
Kiss and Drop Zone in Turf Street
Just a reminder that the Kiss and Drop Zone is currently signed as a one minute parking zone. This means that you cannot park your car in the kiss and drop zone for an extended period. The students arrive at Kiss and Drop at 3pm and are supervised in this zone until 3.20pm. Please consider arriving closer to 3pm for collection.
The Kiss and Drop is designed for you to stay in your car while your child enters the car. If your child cannot open the car door and secure their own seatbelt, you need to park your car in the designated parking areas and walk to the gate to collect your child. Please drive through as far as possible to allow sufficient space for other drivers in the zone. The Kiss and Drop Zone does not function effectively and becomes congested if there are any hold ups or delays.
The school does not request the presence of the Grafton Police to manage traffic at the front of the school. However, there is a regular police presence on Turf Street monitoring the safety of the school zone. Please ensure that you adhere to all traffic signs in the area to avoid fines.
Please check out our school Safe Travel webpage that details all the processes for travel to and from school.
Parking in Hoof Street
There are a small number of parking spaces near the Sunrise Shop (corner of Hoof and Turf Streets) for use by their customers. To assist this small business we suggest parking away from the corner.
Child Safe Standards
Our school as part of the Diocese of Lismore Catholic Schools Limited (DLCSL), like all child-safe organisations, is implementing the Child Safe Standards. As a part of this work, we share our Child Safeguarding Commitment Statement which reinforces our dedication to the safety and wellbeing of all children.
St Mary's Primary School is committed to ensuring we provide a safe environment for students. We are required to meet the statutory obligations of the legislation relating to child protection and the policies and guidelines set out by the Catholic Schools Office. The Child Protection Policy can be found on the webpage.
Working With Children Check (WWCC)
At St Mary's we are committed to creating and supporting a culture of safety for children and ensuring that children are protected. All employees and volunteers are required to have a current WWCC.
NB - The vast majority of volunteers in schools are parents of a child attending the school at which they are volunteering (eg reading groups, fetes, camps, excursions and canteen) and therefore do not require a WWCC. Exceptions to this are
volunteers interacting one-on-one with a child not their own,
working with children who have a disability,
offering mentoring services,
when the volunteer is not a parent or close relative.
Anti-bullying and Wellbeing
Bullying is a serious offence and is not acceptable in our school. All alleged violations and every act of bullying will be duly investigated, and parents/carers informed.
The anti-bullying policy can be found on the school's webpage.