"Must Knows" from this week's newsletter
|Frequently asked Question.||Item||Brief Description||Further Information Located in.|
|What will the CCW staff look like in 2021?||Staff Announcements||This week we announce the new Permanent Full Time Teaching Position for 2021 and outline some further appointments to be made in coming weeks.||Principals Report|
How is the building project going?
|Fortnightly summary||Have a look at the latest photos and summary of where the toilet building project is up to.||Building Update|
|What does school improvement look like at CCW?||
Strategic Plan and 2020 SIP Check In.
|The staff look at the current strategic plan and the achievements of 2020 as well as paln forward to 2021.||Principals Report|
What will some of usual end of year events look like given Covid restrictions?
|New Covid Restrictions and Advice||We will provide a summary of current advice regarding end of year events and how ongoing (albeit loosened) restrictions will apply to the events we have planned. - This is repeat article in case some missed it when it was absent from the last newsletter for the first few days - technical error on my part.||Upcoming Events and Reminders|
Welcome to the newsletter for Week 4, Term 4. I had to write that to be sure I was correct in my calculations because today as we dismissed students in the middle of a storm, it certainly felt like it was Term 3 all over again. The weather is certainly doing unusual things this Spring.
I will update the Building Project as it currently stands in that report but for now I want to acknowledge and thank the parents of our school for their continued flexibility and understanding at this time. The children are doing wonderfully too, but I appreciate what it must be like for parents especially as access to the site is so limited at the moment and things within the site are changing everyday. I truly appreciate your understanding and willingness to work with us during the current context.
Welcome to Ms KatieMcDermottt.
This week Ms Katie McDermottt, our new Assistant Principal for 2021, visited our school as she began the transition to joining our staff. As mentioned in the last letter, Katie comes to us from the Broken Bay Diocese, having had Assistant Principal experience in two schools in Sydney.
Katie joined the staff for a double staff meeting on Wednesday where we conducted a strategic plan check-in; following on from the goals we have worked on in the 2021 School Improvement Plan. I will share some of that conversation with you in the section below. It was wonderful to have Katie present to understand the plan we set ourselves for the 3 years of 2020 - 2022, to see how much we have achieved in 2020 (despite everything) and then to plan forward with the staff in developing the 2021 School Improvement Plan.
It is said that "plans are nothing but planning is everything". While the piece of paper we produced is a valuable road map, the real value of Wednesday's staff meeting and having Katie join us was the shared planning, the collegiality and the deep understanding of our collective commitment to continuous school improvement.
Strategic Plan and 2020 SIP Check In.
As mentioned above, the staff spent some time examining the three year strategic plan and 2020 school improvement plan this week to reflect on what has been achieved in the last 12 months and where we might now go to next. The feedback from the staff, especially in regard to the ongoing professional learning to enhance student outcomes in the school, was very positive. While there were certain things that were halted or limited in their success because of the impact of Covid, much of it was still achievable. To celebrate the hard won successes is just as important as it is to plan for the areas to improve upon. We could call it the teacher's own report card, or at the very least the school's. Below is a summary of the areas from the strategic plan that the staff have agreed are:
- Successfully implemented and embedded with confidence into school culture (Our Successes) representing 29% of the plan we set ourselves.
- Successfully implemented and on their way to becoming embedded in school culture (Our Emerging Practice) representing 19% of our plan.
- Those areas that are underway and remain a focus in 2021 (Our Continuing Journey) representing 26%.
- Those areas that are yet to start or were halted because of the Covid impact. (Our New Beginnings) representing 26% of the original 3 year plan.
Below is a document that expands on which strategies and goals have been rated at which point if parents wish to explore this in more detail.
Our understandings from this strategic plan check-in will now drive our development of the 2021 School Improvement Plan which I am currently working on and will share with parents in the Week 6 Newsletter.
Permanent Full Time Teacher Appointment
It is my great pleasure to announce the appointment of Mrs Emma Conserdyne to the permanent teaching position for Corpus Christi Waratah. Emma has been on our school staff for the last 2 years in a temporary contract capacity, teaching Year 2 for that time and undertaking the role of Pedagogical Mentor and Gifted Education Mentor in 2020. Emma has experience across a number of schools in our diocese and in Sydney and her expertise in classroom practice along with her commitment to excellence in education and collaborative work ethic is highly valued by the staff. While it seems strange to welcome someone to our community when they are already so much a part of it, we do so with confidence knowing that we continue to build a highly professional teaching team here at Corpus Christi Waratah. Congratulations and Welcome (again) Emma.
My Long Service Leave
Many of you may remember that, along with so many others, my family's plans to travel Australia this year (resulting in me taking 2 terms leave) were postponed when Covid hit our lives. After much deliberation, discussion and debate, my husband and I have decided to take our planned LSL for Terms 1 and 2 next year. Of the many reasons for this, given that COVID may still yet restrict us, is the simple fact that a proportion of Brent's leave is being mandated by his company because he has too much up his sleeve (which of course he has because we expected to have used it all by now). To that end, and because we have been planning this trip for more years than we can remember, we feel as if it may be a matter of "today and not tomorrow".
Much of the discussion and dilemma was with the timing of my leave across Terms 1 and 2 of the year. However, the more I examined it, the more I realised the faith I have in the staff and community along with the plans we have and will have in place for 2021. I have confidence that my leave is very much achievable and Corpus Christi would continue successfully in my absence. I haven't quite made myself redundant but the team we have here at Corpus Christi certainly makes my family's dream of a mid-career break a very possible reality. Our Assistant Director, Brian Lacey, myself and the executive team are currently working on a leadership model for Term 1 and 2 and we are confident an announcement can be made before the next newsletter. Meanwhile, we will continue to plan for 2021 in line with the school improvement goals and our strategic plan so that it is already "well underway" before the calendar even ticks over.
Further Teaching Appointments
Emma Conserdyne's previous teaching position in our school (12 months full time temporary contracts) will now need to be filled and I will begin that appointment process shortly.
I have also recently met with with Jodi Bosworth who has applied for and been approved for another 12 months Leave without Pay. Jodi took 12 months this year to support her family including her elderly father. She has applied for this extension given that Covid did not enable her the freedom to experience her leave that she had envisioned and she continuess to support her Father as his sole carer. I will also begin the appointment process for Jodi Bosworth's 0.4FTE (2 Days a Week) teaching role for 2021.
Traffic, Parking and Our Local Community
While it is really is a very short amount of time each day, I would like to ask parents to be continually mindful of the traffic and movement that encroaches on our neighbours each day, particularly in the afternoon. We are becoming very efficient with dismissal and I truly appreciate everyone's efforts to ensure that efficiency but want to remind everyone that safety is paramount.
While we haven't had any heart stopping near misses more recently, we have had concerns about double parking, parking in driveways and in non parking zones. The decisions to do this may seem wise at the time becausee it may make the pick up easier or quicker, they can add to confusion and movement of traffic as other cars are not sure what to do, how to get past or whether to wait. I do apprecatie that on occassion some of these cars are not from our traffic (often a visitor to the hospital can be longer than expected and be parked after 2.30pm) but if we are at least vigilant, we could reduce some of the problem.
It is always hard to put these message in the newsletter because by no means is this a constant concern, it is simply something that staff are noticing on different occasions in the afternoon. And admittedly we have had conversations with our neighbours regarding their concerns about the parking, but we continue to work towards positive solution in this regard. I believe we can do this if we remain mindful of all those affected and vigilant with safety.
Have a Great Two Weeks,
End of Year Events and Current Health Advice and Restrictions.
Please find below at table addressing the current health advice and restrictions in place in our school. In the left column, there is the information communicated from the CSO to parents 2 days ago via COMPASS. In the right column I have made some notes that unpack what this might look like for CCW. We remain alert to any changes in advice that may restrict or perhaps even open up opportunity for greater participation, particularly from parents but until then we will maintain what is outlined below.
|What this will look like at CCW|
|Kindergarten orientation can commence from 1 November.||
We have 4 Thursdays in November scheduled for Face to Face Orientation sessions for students to attend with their Year 5 Buddies.
All Parent information sessions will be prerecorded and shared with the parent body of that cohort in the enrolment packs that they will receive on their arrival on that first morning. Parents dropping children off will not be allowed to stay onsite for more than 10 minutes and only be within the designated area.
|Year 6 to Year 7 transition and orientation programs can commence from 12
|Our Year 6 students are scheduled to attend an orientation day at San Clemente High School on December 3rd.|
|Inter-school sport and physical activities, zone carnivals and gala days can recommence where there is a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place.||
We will hold out Modified Athletics Carnival next Friday 30th October.
Our school will participate in a Rugby Skill Development Day on Thursday 19th November.
We were also registered for a Softball Gala Day but this was cancelled prior to these changes being put in place. We have booked a skills development day with the Softball association instead to be held on school site later in the term. Date TBC
This also allows us to hold our End of Year Activity which at this stage will see an inflatable obstacle course set up at school for what is sure to be a fun session to finish the year.
Excursions and overnight activities within NSW can resume where there is a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place.
|Our stage 3 will attend their booked camp activities across two days (30th November and 1st December). While originally planned as an overnight experience we have opted for the two day camps to eliminate the variables and stresses that overnight camps can cause, especially when things change so quickly and at late notice.|
Schools may hold a Year 6 assembly to recognise the completion of primary school – this will be with students and relevant staff only.
Non-essential visitors are still not permitted on-site.
Our School celebrates a Graduation Assembly to provide the Year 6 class an opportunity to mark their end of Primary School Years. This year, we will accommodate as many students in the hall as possible (in line with restrictions) at the Graduation Assembly on Tuesday 15th December. A priority of student attending will be given to Year 5, Kinder (their Buddies) and then Stage 2. The other classes and parents will be invited to attend via Zoom.
We may yet get a reprieve in this ruling and will jump at the opportunity to do so as quickly as possible.
|Year 6 formals and graduations can proceed for Term 4 – again with only students and relevant staff.||
Our Year 5 students traditionally host a Graduation lunch for the Year 6 cohort, receiving the same gesture the following year. This year we are restricted at to how we might cater in that all food must be individually packed and served. We are still seeking an option for how we still may be able to maintain this tradition.
Athletic Carnival Cancelled
It is with reluctance that we have made the decision to not run our Athletics Carnival this year. While we had a model that could have allowed us to run a modified carnival but this was postponed due to wet weather. We are still required to hold the event within enclosed grounds so that we can control the interaction with public (a firm Covid rule). We have learnt this week that council grounds are very sensitive to weather and there is a reluctance to allow large group access when we experience long periods of wet weather such as we are now. The rain continues to hang around all next week which puts our alternate date of next Firday in more jeopardy. This morning the decision was made after further discussion with the council.
Herein lies the reason for why we use the Glendale Athletics Centre which is an all weather venue (which by the way we have already booked for 2021). I am very mindful that this will prove disappointing news for many of the students who excel at these events and I wish this event could have played out differently to so many others cancelled this year but it was not to be.
2021 Carnival dates
If 2020 has taught us anything, it is you can only make the best of plans and see what comes of them when the time comes. While trends are suggesting that we will have some normalcy by the time our 2021 carnivals roll around, it can't be guranteed (any more than the weather can I guess) . Having said that we have booked the dates for 2021. We are hope-filled people after all.
We will return to the Glendale Sports Centre for our annual athletics Carnival given its all weather capacity. I am happy to confirm we have already booked the 21st May for next year's carnival at that venue.
Our Swimming Carnival always falls early in the year so it is most likely to be still under restrictions but lets hope. We have booked Friday 5th February for the 2020 Swimming Carnival at Mayfield Pool
Welcome to Term 4 as we celebrate -
Students and staff will come together briefly next week on November 11 in an outdoor ceremony to remember in faith all who have served, and continue serving in our armed forces, especially those who have died and those wounded in battle.
Our own Mr Treloar will play the Last Post on his bugle and students will participate in a range of commemorate activities to ensure the day is memorable and meaningful.
A reading from the prophet Isaiah
In days to come, the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be raised above the hills; all the nations shall stream to it. Many peoples shall come and say,
‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.’
For out of Zion shall go forth instruction, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. He shall judge between the nations, and shall arbitrate for many peoples; they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruning‐hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
neither shall they learn war any more.
Feast of All Saints and All Souls Day
Our students aprticipated in an In-Class Liturgthis week for Feast of All Saints' Day (also known as All Hallows' Day or Hallowmas) is the day after All Hallows' Eve (Hallowe'en). It is a feast day celebrated on 1st November each year. All Souls' Day is marked on 2nd November, directly following All Saints' Day, and is an opportunity for Catholic churches to commemorate the faithful departed.
Throughout this COVID year our students have still be able to be involved in many different forms of prayer and liturgy with their class. We may not be able to celebrate mass as a parish community, but we are still acknowleging special occasions and feast days so our students can participate in the important traditions of our Catholic church.
Have a great fortnight and be kind to yourselves!
Mrs Lisa York
Religious Education Coordinator (Acting)
We know that resilience is about being able to cope with the challenges that life throws at us – the ups and downs. It can help us to not just survive, but thrive, when we are faced with adversity. It’s about coping with problems, and building strengths that protect and promote well-being.
This week’s activities will introduce the children to strengths and talents. Helping children to recognise their own unique strengths and talents and those of others can increase their capacity for resilience. Strengths can include anything that promotes a positive identity, the belief of control in one’s own success, self-awareness and a sense of humour. The ability to recognise strengths in others promotes reciprocal relationships, that can be utilised when needed.
The Future is in Good Hands... at Corpus Christi!
Ready, Set, Code....
Our Scope it Technology lessons have proven a HUGE success with all students. This resource provides a set of sequenced topics that are alighned with the teaching outcomes of the Australian Curriculum Digital Technologies curriculum to address the content descriptions of the curriculum.
Units are organised under relevant topics for each grade with an overview and a visual map of the content descriptors and key elements. Digital citizens apply these protocols in situations such as interacting in a collaborative learning space, or creating a blog or website where their public profile is displayed.
Broader categories will also include include:
respectful online behaviour
Check out our photos in the gallery below....
Nothing says STEM like building and testing bridges. With a few basic household materials, some imagination and trial and error, you can do a lot!
Building straw bridges is a fun way to strengthen kids’ science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills.
With just a few simple supplies, they can design a load bearing bridge just like the ones Year 3 and 4 have been building and trialling this week. Let's hope they survive the load bearing test.
Check out our photos in this fortnight's gallery....
We were very thankful at the end of Week 2 when we heard the last of the jack hammering and cement saw that marked the completion of the demolition phase of the project. What is a little bit of cordless drilling, hammering and even circular sawing now?
In Weeks 3 and 4 the project moved into the foundation and framing stage with the creation of new footings, installing the structural steel beams and columns that will replace the load bearing walls that were previously in place. The concrete footings were poured at the end of last week. Week 4 saw the carpentry work begin as they began to frame up the walls that will conceal the plumbing and services. It is good to know that as a general rule the rain will not be halting the work progress.
This week we encountered a problem with a small hole in the toilet tanks creating a leak but this was quickly rectified by the contractors and steps taken to sterilise the area affected by the leak. Again the students were very flexible in using alternate arrangements and procedures while the problem was being fixed.
Movement about the school continues to be restricted by the wet weather but when dry, it is working very well. The staggered lunch we put in place in anticipation of the diminished playground has been very effective. Students are happily utilising different areas of the playground without the overcrowding that space.
Further to the playground space, I am happy to report that our two rejuvenated soccer fields will be open at the beginning of Week 6 with only a layer of topsoil to be laid down later today or next Monday (just one more week to go). This should open up even more options for students. At least, that has been one good thing about the rain. Once those two fields open, we will close the top field to any games and use it only for traffic to the fitness field. We will do some work on that field in the hope that it may rejuvenate itself without too much intervention.
P & F Meeting Minutes Summary
Parents are reminded that the P & F General Meeting Tuesday is scheduled for the 10th November 6.30pm via Zoom. All families are welcome to join the P and F Meeting. If you wish to join the meeting via zoom please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org by Tues 9 am.
Please note, the November meeting has historically been our AGM but this will be held over until the March meeting in 2021 in the hope that a face to face AGM can be conducted. All annual auditing procedures will still be conducted prior to the end of this year.