Term 1, Week 1 2022
Welcome to Term 2. I am really happy to be able to spend another term with you. I do hope your children had a fabulous holiday break and that you were able to do some fun things together. Maintaining your child’s mental health and wellbeing should be a really high priority at the moment with all that has been happening with Covid 19. I am sure that every moment that you are able to spend with your child at the moment in a fun and nurturing way will be invaluable and precious. This term we welcome some new students: Skylah in Reception and Jasmine in Year 2. We also have two Student Teachers with us on their first placement: Jake Fuchs and John Veras. They will mainly be working with our Year 5/6 children. We hope your time with us will be full of learning, friendship and fun!
Over the past few newsletters I have been writing a small piece about each one of our school’s Mercy Values. Today I am going to share my thoughts about ‘Courage’.
We use courage when we feel in danger or ‘at risk’. In various wars and battles over the centuries soldiers have had to be brave and courageous in order to survive. We also see people being courageous on the sporting field, when battling severe weather conditions or when faced with a serious injury or illness. The word courage comes from the Latin word for heart (cor). To take heart is to have courage; to lose heart is to lose courage. While each of us has that inner courage built in, sometimes we need to be encouraged to take a stand when it really matters. This can take us out of our comfort zone!
In the gospels we hear the story of the woman at the well. She was accused of being a sinner and was about to be stoned to death. The pharisees challenged Jesus to test him. Jesus drew in the dirt on the ground while they asked him what they should do. He could have gone along with the angry people and said “Yes, stone her, that is the law”. That would have been the safe thing for him to do. If he had said “No let her go”, then he might have been at risk of being stoned too. Instead, he showed courage by saying “Let those among you who are without sin throw the first stone”. So, with that, they all dropped their stones and left.
We don’t have to be a big and strong person, like a soldier, in order to show courage. Each of us can be like Jesus, to be courageous and take a stand. If we see something in our world that we know is not right, we should speak out about it. Whether it be someone being a bully, or a domestic violence situation or something portrayed in social media or online, we should stand up and say “that is not on” and call it for what it is – unacceptable. To act with courage takes strength, resilience and often the right words. Ask yourself the question “What do I feel passionate about and when do I need to take a stand, at home, at school, at work, in the community? It takes courage to change, especially when the change is countercultural. God can provide us with the courageous heart that is needed for change.
“Speak as your mind directs, and always act with courage.” Catherine McAuley 1841
We continue to see changes with the Covid requirements and regulations. Currently we still require parents to wear masks when entering the school grounds and sadly, parents are still unable to enter the classrooms. If children are unwell they must stay at home and be tested for Covid. If they return a positive result you must notify us and the child must isolate for 7 days. Siblings are still able to come to school, as long as they do not show any symptoms and they do not have Covid. I encourage you to please get your child and yourself vaccinated and maybe consider getting an influenza shot as well.
Next week we have our Learning Conversations and these will be held by telephone due to the current restrictions. The teachers will call you on the number that you have provided. Please check the “Parent Teacher Learning Conversation 2022” slip that I asked you to place on your fridge door for the correct time, day and phone number so that you are ready for the call. Please remember that these Learning Conversations are for 10 minutes only. If you run out of time, you may have to set up an alternative time with your child’s teacher.
Also, next week our Year 3 and Year 5 students will be undertaking the annual NAPLAN tests. We wish all our students the very best as they complete their tests. Please remember these are simply another test that adds to the information that we already gather about our students, so while it remains important to do our best, we don’t want to become overly anxious about them. If parents have any questions or concerns about NAPLAN, please come and see me.
It is certainly going to be a busy week, because it is also Catholic Education Week! This year our focus is on saying “thank you”. This is something that you as parents, and we as a school, have an obligation to instil in our children’s daily routine. They need to understand and value the importance of saying thank you to others. I would like to take this opportunity to say “Thank You” to you as a parent, for all that you do for your children and for the contribution you make as a family to our school community. A huge “Thank You” to our staff for the amazing work they do each day in supporting a classroom of students and each other. Next week might be a good time for you (and your children) to say “Thank You” to the classroom teachers and other staff that work in our school.
I would like to take this opportunity to wish all the mothers a Happy Mother’s Day for Sunday. I hope that it is a fabulous day for you. At this same time, I ask you to keep in your prayers all those women who, for some reason, are unable to have children, choose not to have children, or no longer have children. May each one of you be blessed and continue to be the special gift that God has chosen you to be.
Remember that Monday 10th June (the long weekend) is a Pupil Free Day for our school. Please note this in your diary or on your calendar.
Find attached a community announcement from the Director of Catholic Education SA, Dr Neil McGoran, regarding Ciara James continuing for another term at Our Lady of La Vang School.
Finally, I am pleased to announce our School Captains for 2022 are Lisa Kennedy and Ruby Chambers. I would like to congratulate them for being appointed to this important student role within our school community. A big “Thank You” to all those students who were courageous in presenting themselves as candidates but unfortunately missed out. Well done Lisa and Ruby!
Working in Partnership
Head of Campus
Catholic Education Week … “Thank You”!
The theme for Catholic education next week is ‘Thank you’. As a provocation I asked the children what the word thank you might mean. Here are their theories ‘…Being nice … Being nice to everyone … Being helpful … helping the people that need help build courage ... being encouraging … being grateful … being respectful … helpful … forgiving … saying thanks to God … I said thank you to my dad for making pie ... being thankful(grateful) for what we got.’ Lots of our good Christian values are evident here.
We say thank you when. ‘… someone gives us presents … when someone helps you … when someone gives us money … when someone does something nice to us … when someone helps us when we are hurt … when someone has been injured and they get better they say thank you to God … when someone gives a toy to you … when someone helps you to get your stuff.’
Who are the people we need to say thank you to? Why?
‘The army because they help us when anything is wrong or fight for us …To God for making a wonderful world, for making us so we could care about Jesus when he died … My dog Jacks for trying hard not to hurt his little brother …To our parents for taking care of us …To our teachers and God because God made us and to teachers because they try their best to teach us …To your mum for giving birth to you.’
Do we say thank you enough?
‘No because parents do a lot of stuff for us and we don’t say thank you enough … No because people forget to say it … Sometimes we say thank you enough and sometimes we forget … No because I get distracted a lot by other things.’
Liturgical Year of the Church - Easter
Easter is not just one day. It is a whole season of 50 days of joyful celebration, which will last until Pentecost. We take even longer to celebrate Easter than we took during Lent to prepare for it.
In these early days of the Easter Season, our readings will tell us how different people reacted to the wonderful news of the resurrection. The resurrection of Jesus is the foundation of our faith. Jesus is truly risen and is with us still.
Catholic Education Week
Next week is Catholic Education Week!
Catholic Education Week is about education – celebrating quality teaching and learning across Catholic Education SA. It is an opportunity to celebrate the excellent teaching and learning that happens in our Catholic schools every day and thank the people that make our schools special and work hard Raising Hearts and Minds.
In 2022, the focus for Catholic Education Week is on saying ‘thank you' to all the hard-working people that make our Catholic schools so special – the principals, staff, teachers parents and students that contribute so much.
From May 17-23 our school is hosting our Annual Book Fair to celebrate ‘Family Reading Month’. Students will be bringing home an invitation which contains information about the Book Fair. All proceeds from the book fair will go towards buying new books for our school library. The book fair will be held in the Sophia Centre and open before and after school for purchases. Parents/carers will be able to attend the bookfair during the following times. Opening times will be as follows:
Tues May 17 3:00 – 3:20pm
Wed May 18 8:30 - 8:45am / 3:00 – 3:20pm
Thurs May 19 8:30 - 8:45am / 3:00 – 3:20pm
Fri May 20 8:30 - 8:45am / 3:00 – 3:20pm
Mon May 23 8:30 - 8:45am / 3:00 - 3:20pm
I look forward to seeing you there.