- PRINCIPAL'S MESSAGE
- DEPUTY PRINCIPAL
- ASSISTANT TO THE PRINCIPAL PRIMARY
- ASSISTANT TO THE PRINCIPAL FORMATION & IDENTITY
- ROTARY CRAFTPERSON AWARDS
- YEAR 7 GEOGRAPHY
- MATHEMATICS SUCCESS
- RUN AROUND QUEENSLAND
- OCTI ORIGAMI MATHS INVESTIGATION
- LOOSE PARTS PLAY
- CONGRUENCY IN GEOMETRY & MATHS
- ORIGAMI CLUB
- CRAZY SOCK DAY
- YEAR 11 LEADERSHIP CAMP
- BOOK FAIR
- SCHOOL BOOK LISTS
- HAVE YOU PLACED YOUR ORDER FOR THE 2020 YEARBOOK ?
- FOR SALE
- UPCOMING EVENTS
At St Joseph’s School the educational journey of all students is important. Therefore, we aim to cater for students of all abilities ranging from those with learning difficulties through to those who need enrichment and extension programs to better challenge them. Overall, our goal is to provide academic success for all within the context of a Catholic school environment. The are many procedures and practises in place to achieve this.
For all students, their primary educator is their class teacher. That may involve a number of different teachers depending on the subjects they do. All class teachers incorporate Planning for Personalised Learning (PfPL) as part of their planning for the individual learning needs of all students. Teacher planning incorporates the differentiation required for all students to access the curriculum. This planning for personalised learning ensures that students achieve their entitlement to ‘rigorous, relevant and engaging learning programs drawn from a challenging curriculum that addresses their individual learning needs’ as described in the Australian Curriculum. The PfPL poster below illustrates the planning process.
To assist class teachers with those students with learning difficulties and students who need enrichment and extension, who we have a number of support staff and procedures in place that involve resources provided from within the school, from Toowoomba Catholic Schools and from external consultants and organisations (for example, occupational therapists and audiologists).
Support from within the school includes our Learning Support Teacher, Miss Erin Canavan, and her staff. Miss Canavan, a qualified and passionate Special Education Teacher, has been at St Joseph’s School for three years and the long hours she dedicates to the students and the school has been very important for the development of the Learning Support program. Miss Canavan is fortunate to have a team of very good Teacher Aides across both the Primary and Secondary Campuses. They work closely with teachers to support the needs of the students. Miss Canavan also oversees the very important verification process necessary to ensure the school gets the state and national funding necessary to resource the Learning Support program.
To maximise the learning of those more talented students, the school has both a Gifted and Talented Program and an Enrichment and Extension Program. These programs parallel each other and provide extension activities and modifications for identified students in the classroom and through co-curricular activities. The GATS (Gifted and Talented Students) Panel is responsible for the identification of gifted and talented and enrichment and extension students and development of suitable programs and modifications. The GATS Panel consists of:
- The Head of Enrichment and Data Improvement
- The Learning Support Teacher
- A member of the School Leadership Team
- The Guidance Counsellor
- Class Teacher/s
During an identification process, the GATS Panel relies on specialized testing and input from staff and parents.
Key groups responsible for supporting students with different needs (both academic and social/emotional) are the Student Welfare Committees (Primary and Secondary) which meet regularly to identify and monitor students at risk. The committee consists of the:
- Deputy Principal or Assistant to the Principal Primary
- Learning Support Teacher
- Guidance Counsellor
- Heads of Wellbeing (Secondary)
The Student Welfare Committees also consult with class teachers and the Heads of Curriculum. The outcome of Student Welfare meetings is the development of individualised support plans for students. These plans involve both curriculum and pastoral support.
St Joseph’s School is also fortunate to have the ongoing assistance of expert staff at Toowoomba Catholic Schools including experienced Learning Support Teachers, specialist Education Officers in Numeracy and Literacy and specialists such as the Toowoomba Catholic Schools Speech Therapist. These staff work closely with our teachers to maximise the learning of our students.
Finally, I would like to recognise the work of two specialists at school who are important to ensuring students of all abilities are looked after at St Joseph’s School. Guidance Counsellor, Mrs Cathy Mills, does outstanding work caring for the social and emotional wellbeing of our students and their families. Her work assists the students to be in the best possible state of mind to succeed in their learning. She also works closely with the teachers to support their learning programs. Similarly, the work of internationally acclaimed music educator, Dr James Cuskelly OAM, is more than teaching the students to sing. His unique teaching methods have cross curriculum benefits through improved general auditory processing and improved language and literacy skills.
I hope this gives you a good snapshot for what St Joseph’s School offers to support our goal to provide academic success for all. Please don’t hesitate to discuss your child’s progress and plan for learning with their class teacher. Parents and caregivers are essential to the development of the learning plans for our students. That input and feedback about your child’s process is very important to our planning and teaching for all students.
The other staff mentioned here, including the School Leadership Team, are also available to assist you. Further, if any parent or caregiver would like to speak to me about any issue, please do not hesitate to contact me. We are all here to help.
Term 4 historically moves very quickly, and this year has been no different. We have flown past the halfway mark for students and are drawing ever closer to farewelling our wonderful Year 12 cohort later in November. Over the next few weeks, as the assessment window draws closer, it is important that all students work collaboratively with teachers to meet deadlines and implement the feedback given to continue to improve the quality of responses.
The Year 12 students have engaged in the first External Assessment block under the new QCE system. The feeling of apprehension, coupled with positive energy, has seen the students perform remarkably well in the exams so far. The journey in preparing for these external exams has been long and challenging, and we as a school community are proud of the effort and commitment that the Year 12’s have shown across the exam block. We wish them continued luck!
Awards night for Primary and Secondary students were a wonderful celebration of the achievements of our students in all aspects of their schooling. It was pleasing to see so many of our students receive recognition not only for academic success, but for sporting, cultural, religious and leadership success also. As a school community, we congratulate all these students on their excellent efforts across the year.
I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the new student leaders for 2021, in particular the students who have received opportunities to represent the student body as captains, vice captains, prefects and house captains. It is certainly an honour for these students, and I am confident they, along with the Senior cohort as a collective group, will lead the school positively in 2021.
In Week 6, the Year 6 students transitioning into Year 7 in 2021, including students joining our community from other schools in the region, will enjoy as full day program on the Secondary campus. Details for this day have been sent to parents and we look forward to a fun-filled and engaging day of activities. As a school, we are excited to see the continued growth of the Year 6 students as a collective group as they move into Secondary together, building on the wonderful work done this year in developing their skills, capabilities and leadership qualities as part of the Year 6 hub.
Changing circumstances in our lives can be accompanied by a range of emotions. It may depend on the change itself, who instigated it or the perceived or actual consequences which will result. At this time of the school year, our minds naturally turn to transition - pre-school into Prep, Primary into Secondary and even class to class. Next week we will welcome the Prep students for 2021 for the first of two 'Practice Mornings'. The relationship between a teacher and a student of any age is crucial to ensuring that the latter feels that they belong and are valued. Without this feeling of safety, their ability to learn is compromised. Mrs McNichol has already started to build that bond with her students for next year and the practice mornings will consolidate this further.
Year 6 students will also participate in a transition day next Monday, allowing them to experience other subject offerings on the Secondary Campus and meet other teachers. Given the fact that the Year 6 students have had some lessons with Secondary teachers throughout this year, this change will not be as big as it has been previously. However, it is still significant for the students and something which needs to done well. Later in the term, the rest of the Primary students will be able to spend some time with their new teacher for 2021. Details regarding this will follow shortly. Whatever the age of the student, we will do our very best to ensure that the change going into 2021 is seen as a positive experience.
Well done to all the students for the ongoing commitment they are showing to their work. It has been particularly pleasing to hear conversations around the growth that individuals have as they reflect on improved assessment data. We really are seeing a marked difference in our students as learners as a result of our work on making learning visible.
Assistant to the Principal Primary
Data from a number of sources throughout the Toowoomba Diocese has indicated some interesting facts about teaching religious education in Catholic Schools.
- Nearly half of students don’t like RE and,
- Many feel a strong disconnect from the Church
The Spirit of Gen Z Survey (2018) showed that, while 24% of Gen Z teens have no belief in God or a higher being, 67% believe in God, a higher being or life force instead of God.
It is this statistic which encourages us, as educators, to embrace the opportunity to interpret these signs and “engage students in an open narrative and dialogue between the Catholic tradition and their personal experiences and contemporary cultural contexts” (NCEC Framing Paper: RE in Australian Catholic Schools).
At St Joseph’s School we are looking at how we better connect with our students. As educators of children in our school, we need to become witness, specialist and moderator. To witness is to embody Christian life, sharing insights and experiences with the students we encounter. As a specialist, teachers will have a deep knowledge and understanding of the curriculum as wells as the Catholic faith and beliefs. Importantly, as moderators teachers will guide and mentor students to foster dialogue and discussion around their own religious journey.
Creating an atmosphere of dialogue, where faith, life and culture are integrated, inspires hope and provides opportunity for our teachers and students.
Assistant to the Principal Formation & Identity
Monday night saw Year 10 Tech students showcase their work as part of the Rotary Craftsperson Awards.
The quality of the work produced by students was exceptional. Scott Stone is to be commended for his work with the Year 10 Tech students in producing high quality craftsmanship as part of this process.
Congratulations to Year 10 student Anthony Pearce who won the Rotary Junior Craftsman Award.
It was a wonderful way to celebrate the efforts of the students and we thank Rotary for their on-going support.
Wednesday, 4th November, saw Year 7 Geography students take part in a field study to Talc and Lock Streets, Stanthorpe.
As part of their syllabus, students conducted a liveability analysis of two streets within Stanthorpe for their Liveability Inquiry Report. Students collected data and will then use this data and photos in their report where they are required to choose which street they would like to live in. Students are required to support their opinion with evidence from the data that was collected.
Over the course of the year, students on the Primary Campus have been involved in a number of Mathematics contests that have now all been completed.
Firstly, the annual Maths Olympiad and Maths Games have concluded with some pleasing results. Our top five-point scorers this year were Harry Wren, Jack Brown, Aryanna Davie, Magnolia Mills and Emily Robinson in the Olympiads whilst Isaak Brown, Ella Wren, Lachlan Doyle, Vanilia Eunson and Sasha Kendall were recognised for their improved attitude, effort and performance in the Maths Games.
As some may be aware the Queensland Association of Mathematics Teachers runs an annual problem-solving event that moves through a number of knock out stages before reaching the final with the top 16 teams in the state battling it out mathematically. This year we had two teams qualify to the rural stage of the competition with Harry Wren, Tom Telfer and Jack Brown finishing in first place in this to qualify for the finals. This was a great effort form the boys and they performed well in the State finals to finish in eighth place overall. Needless to say, there were some interesting and challenging questions encountered along the way.
Our final event for the year was the annual Granite Belt Maths Team Challenge in which we entered three teams. All teams performed well in this contest and the students in Years Five and Six have worked hard during lunch breaks and in Problem Solving groups to develop their skills in preparation for this event. The St Joseph’s tradition of performing well at this event continued in 2020 with our teams finishing in first and second place and our third team of only Year five students finishing not too far behind third place.
Congratulations to all students who took part in these events and a special thank you to all organisers who went above and beyond in providing the opportunities for the students in this unusual year in difficult circumstances.
Friday 23rd October saw students from Year 2 and 3 celebrate reaching the town of Tully in our 'Run Around Queensland', with water games.
While the expected rain didn't eventuate, the students had heaps of fun and got a little wet !
Year 6 students put their knowledge of angles to the test by creating and analysing an origami design to observe and report on the Mathematics involved in their creation.
It was also a significant activity in persistence, resilience and teamwork!
Late in Term 3, Mrs Charlton and Mrs McNichol attended three virtual professional development sessions to find out more about ‘Loose Parts Play’ at school.
After participating in the virtual professional development and visiting another school in the district that had already incorporated the ‘Loose Parts Play’ at their school, Mrs McNichol and Mrs Charlton couldn’t wait to get it started at St Joseph’s.
It has been a real success with the students especially in the early years P-3. However, it is just not just for the younger students. It is being promoted for all the year levels and it is hoped to involve the Secondary students at a later stage to work together with the younger classes. Everyone is encouraged to join in and construct obstacles and build things out of the materials and loose parts that are available.
What is ‘Loose Parts Play’? - you ask.
Loose Parts Play is a type of play that supports imagination, divergent thinking, problem solving, invention and construction. It offers children a sense of wonder. Materials used in this kind of play are recyclable and are able to be moved, joined up, redesigned, lined up and taken apart, carried and put together again in multiple ways.
What are the benefits of Loose Play?: When children become interested and intrigued with what equipment and objects are out on the playground for them to use and play with, they begin to interact with loose parts, they enter a world of “what if?” That promotes the type of thinking that leads to problem solving and reasoning. Loose parts enhance children's ability to think imaginatively and see solutions, and they bring a sense of adventure and excitement to children's play”.
Available for the students to use are parts such as poly pipes, tarps, bamboo sticks, bark, pebbles, blankets, steel frames (for cubby’s), boxes, bread crates and milk crates. We are, in the near future going to ask for donations of materials that are no longer used but still safe and not broken that the students can use to play with.
Students in P-1, this Term have been involved in some challenges already that have been set by their teachers such as building a ball run with the poly pipes to see how fast and far the balls can travel, construction of cubby houses and an inside challenge with cardboard boxes – construction of a tower with a carpark on every level. All students in Prep and Year 1 have been randomly placed in mixed groups and this has worked well developing social skills, problem solving and general talk to plan and construct their challenge. Year 3 have also been very engaged and excited building ‘ant houses’ with natural bark, sticks and bricks.
How can you help?
We are looking for and asking for donations of any of the listed loose parts below: logs, stones, rocks of varying sizes and textures, pinecones, bricks – foam, real or plastic branches, seed pods and any other random, interesting objects. Please remember all items/objects need to be safe (no sharp, broken edging) and useable for play purposes. Please check in with the teachers if unsure.
If anyone would like to know more or see the play in action, please see Mrs Charlton, Mrs McNichol or Mrs Campbell.
Stay tuned for further information and constructions on Loose Parts Play in the near future.
Year 10 students recently participated in various games and activities on congruency as part of their Geometry unit.
Year 10 Maths students also became “experts” in their geometry problem, teaching peers. Group members rotated through each station swapping between learner and teacher.
Over the last few weeks, Year 6 students Erin and Margaret O'Dea have been spending time in the library making origami. After they noticed other students showing interest in their origami creations, they decided to start an Origami Club and invite other students to join in.
Therefore, Tuesday saw the very first meeting of the newly formed lunch time Origami Club ! Maggie, with the assistance of Layne Kirby and Ava Scalia lead a number of students as they learned the art of paper folding and created paper swans.
Thursday 22nd October saw students participate in the school's annual SOCKTOBER DAY where students were invited to wear their craziest socks in support of Catholic Missions.
Socktober invites schools to engage with mission in an holistic way within the head, heart, hands model: encouraging a learning mind, an open heart and hands for action.
As well as wearing crazy socks students were asked to bring a gold coin donation to support this fundraiser.
Prizes were presented for the students in each class voted to have the best crazy socks.
Well done to all students on their weird and wonderful creations !!
The Year 11 students travelled to Sommerville Park (eastern side of Storm King Dam) for their Leadership Camp on Thursday 29th and Friday 30th October.
Tents were pitched and swags unfurled before the group were invited to reflect on a variety of Leadership styles, including Servant Leadership, Collaborative and Transformative Leadership. Reflections were led by Mrs Kirby and Mrs Ellis.
Mr Citrigno led a session on personal behaviours and how students are challenged to change the things that aren’t working for them and to begin relating to teachers as young adults.
In between discussions, they managed time for fishing, walking around the dam, climbing the Pyramids, and swimming in the waterhole at Girraween National Park.
Mrs Ellis catered for the camp and apart from a little hiccup with the spaghetti bolognese, the food was delicious. The venue was superb and the company was great.
Judging by the feedback the students gave to each other on the last day, St Joseph’s can look forward to an awesome Year 12 Leadership Group who will build and grow our school community.
Thursday 29th October, saw McAuley play Greenland’s in the grand finals for Netball.
After finishing second in the town section of the competition, McCauley were able to defeat Davadi in the town final.
The district grand final was played at our Secondary campus courts and it was a very close game with McAuley winning 9 to 7. After leading 2 to nil at quarter time, McAuley was then down by 3 goals at half time. A strong third quarter with a fantastic defensive effort by Lillian and Hannah and superb service to the goal circle by Charlotte proved the difference.
On behalf of my McAuley teammates, I would like to thank Mrs O’Dea for umpiring and the Greenlands team for a great game.
India St John
The theme of our Scholastic Book Fair is Arctic Adventure, where we hope you will find snow much to read !
It's a wonderful selection of engaging and affordable books for every reading level. Please make plans to visit our Book Fair and be involved in shaping your child's reading habits.
Book Fair dates:
Monday November 9th - Friday November 13th
8am - 8.30am; 3pm - 3.30pm
We look forward to seeing you and your family at our
Book Fair !
Remember, all purchases benefit our school.
The 2021 Book lists are now available for parents to start preparing for 2021 at St Joseph's School!
These book lists will also be sent through Parent Paperwork via email.
If you haven't already placed your order for the 2020 Yearbook, now is your chance to do so!
The 2020 yearbooks are $27 per copy and we are extending the deadline to book and pay to Monday 9th November. To confirm your yearbook, order you must pay in full at the School Office by cash, eftpos or via direct deposit. Please include your surname and yearbook as a reference if paying by direct deposit. E.g. Smith Yearbook.
Yearbooks will be available for collection from the Front Office in the last week of Term 4. For further enquiries, either email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the School Office on 07 4681 5900.
Suitable for Engineering students
Phone: 0438 812 558
School Blazers for Sale - 1 x Size 14, 1 x Size 18
Please contact Megan Mahoney for further information
|2- 17 November||Year 12 Students - External Exam Blocks|
|18 November||Primary Swimming Carnival|
|19 November||Year 12 Graduation|
|20 November||Year 12 Farewell Assembly|
|23 November||Lecturette Town Final|
|25 November||Year 6 Wet n Wild Excursion|
|27 November||Year 10 & 11 Finish|
|2 December||Semper Una Year 6 Celebration|
|4 December||Term 4 Finishes - 12pm|