- PRINCIPAL'S MESSAGE
- DEPUTY PRINCIPAL
- ASSISTANT TO THE PRINCIPAL PRIMARY & TEACHING & LEARNING
- ASSISTANT TO THE PRINCIPAL FORMATION & IDENTITY
- YEAR 9 RELIGION & ETHICS
- UniSQ SCIENCE & ENGEINEERING CHALLENGE
- A VISITOR FROM CANADA
- THE HONOURABLE CHIEF JUSTICE - HELEN BOWSKILL
- UPCOMING MUSIC OPPORTUNITIES
- WE WANT YOU !!
- IMPORTANT REMINDER
- DOES YOUR CHILD HAVE AN NDIS PLAN ?
- YOUNG CARERS
- NCCD - IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR PARENTS & CAREGIVERS
- UPCOMING EVENTS
Attendance at school for some students has been a concern this year. I appreciate that many factors influence a student's ability to attend regularly, many which are out of their control, for example, illness. However, some students take the option of not attending on occasions, or for some students many occasions.
Attendance really does matter.
Legal responsibilities about attendance.
Children who are of compulsory school age are legally required to attend school every school day unless there is an acceptable excuse. A child continues to be of compulsory school age until they have completed Year 10 or turned sixteen, whichever comes first.
After the compulsory school age ends, the compulsory participation phase begins. The same legal requirements apply. A young person’s compulsory participation phase continues from the end of the compulsory schooling stage, until they turn 17 years of age, or until they gain a Qld Certificate of Education (QCE), a Certificate of Achievement, Senior Statement, Certificate III or Certificate IV.
When is it not okay to miss school?
From time to time, absences from school may be necessary - for example sickness, accidents, or family emergencies. Parents/carers should let the school know the reason for the absence as soon as possible, either before or on the day of absence.
It is not okay to miss school to sleep in, finish assignments, go on holidays or shop. It is a legal requirement to attend school and missed lessons will set a student back in their learning.
Please work with your children and the school to ensure full attendance of your children. Contact the school about any concerns or queries you have. We are here to support your children.
I spoke last week to all secondary students about the importance of ensuring that each and every interaction you have with anyone in our St Joseph’s community has a positive impact. It is an important part of what we do within a Catholic school community and an ongoing focus in the conversations we regularly have with students. It is important that students finish the term well and seek the support of their teachers and peers as assessment timelines approach.
A reminder that the Sentral for Parents portal has been rolled out to all parents across the school. This portal allows you as parents to lodge absences for your child, view their daily timetables and view and download academic reports. More features will be rolled out into the Parent Portal as we move into the future. Importantly, Semester 1 Academic Reports for all students P-12 will be distributed electronically to the Parent Portal at the end of this Semester. If you have not yet activated your Parent Portal and linked your access key, please do this so you are able to access your child’s Academic Report. If you need assistance with activating the portal, please contact the school.
Call to be… Christ-Like
Called to live… Mercy
As we approach the end of Semester 1, teachers are gathering final evidence/data before making their judgements for the end of semester reports. This is not a process which is taken lightly but rather one that demands significant consideration of each child's progress towards the end of year achievement standard for each subject. I trust that parents will take the opportunity to review the grades in the report - especially those associated with effort and application to the learning process - as well as give due consideration to the comments which will include targets for Semester 2.
In the last two weeks, we have continued to embrace learning in many contexts. I would like to acknowledge Mary Findlay from the Stanthorpe Art Gallery who attended a recent assembly to educate the students on some of the key facts about endangered species in the area. This was a prelude to the Crisps Art Show, which we are very keen to support each year. Students in Prep and Year 6 have been working with two volunteers in recent weeks - Mrs Quirk in Prep and Mrs Francis in Year 6. Again, I acknowledge their work with our students and the assistance they provide to the teachers. Adela Caruso has also continued her program with Prep around developing and maintaining friendships. This is a program which is funded by Bushkids and for that, we are very grateful. The Life Ed van has also visited us in the last two weeks and the learning facilitated by the trainer, Jane Jackson, will be consolidated and enhanced through classroom experiences on the same themes.
Over the past fortnight, we have held our Prep 2024 Open Mornings. We were delighted to welcome 22 families across the two days and look forward to seeing these children in the St Joseph's uniform come the end of January 2024. If you are aware of any families who have not yet made a decision re school for next year, please let them know that we welcome visits to the primary campus and we are happy to conduct tours. This is an important decision that families make and we want them to have all the information so that their decision is an informed one. Thank you to two of our current mums who volunteered to share their family's experience with the parents of our prospective students.
Looking forward to the next two weeks, we are delighted to be able to participate in the upcoming Toowoomba Catholic Schools' Arts Festival. This will involve some students from Year 4 and all from Year 5 and 6. Parents have been informed and are asked to review recent emails regarding permission.
I wish everyone a pleasant week.
With God's blessings
Assistant to the Principal Primary & Teaching & Learning
Around the Grounds….
With so much happening in and around the school community, I felt a summary of recent events would be fruitful…
Year 9 have commenced their weekly visits to Carramar where they have begun to foster and develop relationships with some of the residents who come along for a catch up. There have been many highlights over recent weeks but a couple that I have observed:
"Last week I spoke with Wayne who was playing Jenga with Abraham and Hamish. Wayne said to me that this was the third time he had spent with the kids, and he was absolutely "LOVING IT!!".
In week 5, students met Ralph, a new resident who had only arrived the day before our visit. In our most recent visit Ralph brought along his photos of his beloved Holden car, a certificate he had been awarded from work, and numerous photos of him in his younger days. These created great discussion between Ralph, Jack, Billy and Darius.
Year 12 Student/Parishioner Catch Up
Recently the Year 12 students invited their parishioner for a “Comfortable Cup of Tea”, a term initiated by Catherine McAuley and one which we adopted for a meet and greet with our parishioners. The student/parishioner program is in its second year and involves connecting a parishioner with a Year 12 student to pray and support them in their final year of school. The students and parishioners had a wonderful time getting to know each other, sharing stories and establishing connections. A prayer service was held in the chapel to conclude their time together.
Supporting the Cancer Council
Chelsea Debnam sold cupcakes and other morning tea treats each Tuesday for the month of May as a fundraiser for the Cancer Council. Chelsea also provided information to Mentor classes around the fantastic work the Cancer Council continues to do in fields of research and support. Chelsea also challenged Mentor classes to submit a photo showing their awareness of sun safety. The winning Mentor class was McAuley 2 who now hold the Mentor cup and will receive lunch for their Mentor class. Chelsea also raised $445 during her fundraising. Well done, Chelsea.
Next term we will continue to support cancer groups with Year 6 student Grace Barker and Miss Thompson rocking the chop for the Ponytail Project, as well as a Beanies for Brain Cancer Day for the third State of Origin. Stay tuned for how you can support these campaigns.
Mini and Teen Vinnies
Both Mini and Teen Vinnies are well underway with their Winter Appeal for St Vincent de Paul with a wonderful response to our call for blankets and tinned food. Can I encourage all students to contribute a least one can, remembering that “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” Mini Vinnies also recently held a cupcake and hot milo stall to raise money for SVDP. Funds raised will help many families in the cold months ahead.
Meals on Wheels
Year 8 students have commenced their second round of Meals on Wheels this week. Ensuring that our students are able to live out our Mercy values, and contribute in such a meaningful way to our community is empowering.
"One person I visited for Meals on Wheels, said that I had made their day and that made me feel pretty good!" - Year 8 student, Charlie
"It's fun and it really gets you out of your comfort zone and being out in the community. It also gives you a good feeling of helping others". - Year 8 student, Olivia
With God's blessings,
Assistant to the Principal Formation & Identity
Mobile Phone Separation Anxiety
The use of mobile phones and technology in schools has been a highly debated topic internationally, including in Australia. Almost all states and territories in Australia, have implemented full bans on mobile phones during class, recess, and lunch times, while allowing students to carry their phones during travel to and from school.
Critics argue that there is no evidence supporting the effectiveness of such bans, but this is a mischaracterisation. Studies have shown the positive impacts of mobile phone bans in schools. One study conducted in 2016, found that banning mobile phones led to an increase in student performance, with test scores improving by 6.4% of a standard deviation. Similar studies from Spain and Norway also supported these findings.
For parents concerned about mobile phone separation anxiety in their children, it is important to acknowledge it as a real issue and discuss the negative effects of phone addiction, such as sleep problems and mental health issues. Gradually introducing phone-free periods at home, setting clear expectations and boundaries and modelling healthy behaviours can help your child cope. It is also crucial to establish a support network and seek professional help if needed. Implementing mobile phone bans in schools allows for better focus on teaching and learning, minimising distractions and interruptions.
This Special Report will help address mobile phone separation anxiety and provide guidance on supporting your child’s wellbeing during this transition period. We hope you take a moment to reflect on the information offered, and as always, we welcome your feedback. If this raises any concerns for you, a loved one or the wellbeing of your child, please consider seeking medical or professional help.
Click on this link to view the Special Report https://stjosephs.qld.schooltv.me/wellbeing_news/special-report-mobile-phone-separation-anxiety
Well done to our Secondary students who took part in the UniSQ Science and Engineering Challenge on Thursday 25th May in Toowoomba.
The Science and Engineering Challenge is held at UniSQ each year and allows students to engage in a set of fun and competitive activities involving principles of science, engineering and technology. Students are able to explore scientific principles for themselves rather than being guided to a predetermined answer.
32 students from Years 8, 9 & 10 were selected to represent the school at the challenge. The students were divided into teams of 4 and given individual challenges. Each team scored points for their efforts and points were totalled for the whole school. There were excellent results by a number of the teams who won or placed in their challenges and the school was the overall highest points scorer, defeating the other 7 schools on the day and receiving the winners medal.
Thankyou to Secondary teachers Ms Henney and Mr Lahey who took the students to the challenge.
Year 6 students were lucky enough recently to have a visit from Mrs B (also known as Lucas’s grandma from Canada).
Students learnt much about the weather, the landscape and the amazing animals and pesky birds (Canada Goose - we are talking about you) as well as learning about and sampling some YUMMY Canadian Maple Syrup.
Friday 26th May, Secondary students were treated to a live Zoom talk from The Honourable Chief Justice Helen Bowskill, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Queensland.
The Chief Justice shared her story of how she rose to be the most Senior Judge in Queensland and talked about various aspects of the legal system.
Thanks to our Secondary teacher, Miss Claudia Villari, for organising this special event.
St Joseph’s String Orchestra – starting next week
Now that the Eisteddfod is over, we welcome all string students (yes, even beginners!) to attend string orchestra starting from next week. Rehearsals are held before school - 7.45 to 8.30 every Tuesday morning in the multi-purpose room.
This is a wonderful opportunity to consolidate what is learned in lessons, while getting to play with others. Students of all abilities are catered for, and it is a terrific way for students to learn from one another and refine the art of performance. I’d love for every student to participate, so if your child won’t be able to attend rehearsals at this time, please let me know.
Granite Belt Strings Festival – Week 10, Thursday and Friday (22-23rd June)
This is the second year Ballandean School has hosted a 2-day combined-schools String Festival, and this year we are inviting St Josephs’ and Texas students to participate.
The Festival is held from 9am -3pm at Ballandean State School, where around 100 students in Years 3-6 from schools across the Granite Belt will be involved in workshops with visiting artists Topology, as well as rehearsing in a combined mass string ensemble led by either myself or Lucy Andersen.
The two days will culminate in a concert at the Ballandean Hall, showcasing all the students have learned over the two days. Parent transport will be required for children to and from Ballandean School, so if you are able to do this, or have a spare seat please let me know! I’ll be sending home a consent form over the next few days.
St Joseph’s Strings at the Eisteddfod
Our growing strings program represented St Joseph’s at the Border District Eisteddfod on the 24th and 25th May. A number of soloists entered, and for the first time, there was a Primary and Secondary Ensemble. I’m extremely proud of all our performers, who practiced hard, played well and performed professionally on stage. St Joseph’s Secondary String Ensemble came 2nd place in their section (3-12 players) and Harper Cavallaro, Emma Pradella and Chloe Staley were awarded Highly Commended in their solo sections. Well done to all involved!
As always, if you have any questions, or would like to chat, I’m always available – feel free to email @ firstname.lastname@example.org or give me a call on 0488 39 29 79
If you are a past pupil of St Joseph’s School, we want you!
As part of the Religious Education curriculum, Year 6 students are keen to interview past pupils of our school to support the preservation of past memories and establish an understanding of how St Joseph’s School has played a role in making you the person you are today.
Interviewees are invited to come along to the school where you will be interviewed and then offered a tour of the school and our facilities, an opportunity to relive memories and stories of past years.
If you can help us or know someone who may be willing to be involved in this endeavour please contact the office on 4681 5900.
A reminder to all families that all camps and extra curriculum activities are to be paid prior to attending. An invoice will be included on your account to allocate your payments/repayments to these activities.
Term 2 School Fees were due by 17th May. Please finalise payment of your fees as soon as possible. Payments can be made by direct deposit, or at the office by cash, cheque or EFTPOS. Please include your account no. as a reference with all payments. Your account number starts with STA. Banking institutions allow different amount of charters for a reference so please provide us much detail as possible to ensure payments are allocated to the correct account.
|Account Name :
|St Joseph's School
|Bank & Branch :
|064-431, Commonwealth Bank, Stanthorpe
|Account No. :
|Eg. STA117 Kendall Yr11 Camp Inv12345
If a concession is required due to financial hardship, please arrange to make an appointment with the Principal by contacting Mrs Angelina Sims on 4681 5904. If you have any issues with your account, please do not hesitate to contact the School's Bursar, Mrs Megan Hines to discuss on 46815 903 or email Megan.Hines@twb.catholic.edu.au.
Our Learning Support Teacher Primary & Middle Leader Primary, Ms Catherine Green has asked that any family that has a NDIS (National Disability Insurance Scheme) plan, to please email her to advise.
Please email Cate at Catherine.Green@twb.catholic.edu,.au with " My child___________has an NDIS Plan "
Your assistance will be greatly appreciated.
Do you feel like you might be a young carer or know of someone who is a young carer? That's someone who is looking after or helping someone with an illness or disability - then there is support for you !
Please contact our School Counsellor, Ms Rachel Leslie if you'd like to chat about the help that is available for young carers. Rachel can be contact by emailing her at Rachel.Leslie@twb.catholic.edu.au or you can call the Carer Gateway hotline on 1800 422 737.
Every year, each school in Australia submits to the government the number of students that are receiving extra support (adjustments) at school for either a diagnosed or undiagnosed disability or challenges. This information submitted leads to a school receiving government funding to ensure support for the students.
The disabilities/challenges are categorised as Cognitive, Sensory, Physical or Social-Emotional.
Diagnosed disabilities: These include many challenges such as ADHD, ASD, anxiety and other mental health concerns, Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, speech issues, hearing/vision impairments, health and physical issues such as diabetes, and so on.
Undiagnosed disabilities/ challenges: When a student requires ongoing support, but does not have a formal diagnosis, they are identified as "Imputed". The school does not in any way attempt to diagnose students. However, the school attempts to identify the extra and ongoing adjustments that are required at school in order for students to successfully access the curriculum.
There are many adjustments that staff put into place to support our students with challenges. These adjustments may occur sometimes, most of the time, or all the time throughout the day for a student.
These adjustments vary in intensity from actions such as frequent check-ins by teachers, simplified language with a student, selected seating, deliberate placement in the classroom, physical aids such as fidget toys, sound systems in the classroom, teacher aides helping students with learning, social skill-building programs, social-emotional support with anxiety, modified curriculum plans, therapy such as OT or speech, to 1-1 adult support throughout the day.
The number of students receiving adjustments in schools varies considerably. In the Toowoomba Diocese, the average percentage of the school population included in the NCCD count hovers around 22%. Our school numbers vary from year to year.
Please read the attached flyer on the NCCD to understand more fully how this collection of data occurs.
Please contact your child's class teacher or the Learning Support Teacher, Catherine Green by email at catherine.Green@twb.catholic.edu.au if you would like further information on NCCD inclusion for your child.
Congratulations to Year 10 student, Elly Petrie on her recent success at the State Championships where she represented Darling Downs for Golf from the 19th - 25th May.
Elly played 4 days of golf at Palmer Coolum, and improved her score and shots everyday, learning a lot along the way.
Elly is to be commended as she finished in the top 10 nett in the State for 13-19 Years Girls.
Both teams represented the school with great sportsmanship and skill. The Seniors came 3rd in the Cup Devlopment division. It was our best result in many years, possibly ever.
Congratulations to Hannah and Georgia Petrie as they recently competed at the 10-12 Years State Basketball Championships in Townsville from 25-28 May.
Both girls competed extremely well coming up against the best players from across Queensland.
Their brother Thomas Petire also recently competed in the 16 Years State Basketball championships for Darling Downs in Toowoomba from the 18-21 May.
This was a great learning experience for Tom as a 13 year old coming up against the best 16 year olds from around the State.
After another fun two days of competition, the Broncos Cup came to a close for 2023 with the Finals day being held in Warwick on Wednesday 31 May.
A huge credit goes to the 60 players who represented our school with great pride, displaying great sportsmanship at all times. Thankyou also must also go to the parents for the early starts in getting the students to the bus for the early travel across the two days.
Lastly, a great deal of thanks goes to the teachers who willingly gave up their time to allow our students these opportunities.
For the record, St Joseph’s recorded their best results in the history of the competition. Results were:-
B Grade Rugby League – 5th place
A Grade Rugby League – 3rd place (William Kay Player of the Final)
C Grade Netball – 2nd place
B Grade Netball – 3rd place (Chloe Searle Player of the Final).
A Grade Netball – 3rd place (Eliza Bonner Player of the Final)
|Inter District Basketball Competition (after school)
|TCS Arts Festival
|Year 10 Work Experience
|Year 9 Camp
|Primary Field Events
|Year 11 Peer Skills & RSA
|Year 11 First Aid Training
|Year 8 Camp
|Term 2 Finishes
|Student Free Day
|Term 3 Commences