Tena Koutou Katoa

Welcome to Holy Week.  This week is of course an extremely significant one for our Catholic School.  Holy Week is of course when we follow the last week of Jesus’ life on earth with us and anticipate his resurrection.  However, the lead up to Easter Friday is a solemn one and we hope to reflect this through the daily liturgy and final stations of the cross on Thursday.  It has been great to see the children of several classes involved in the organisation and performance of key liturgy.

A warm welcome to our new students....
Tara Lock, Sumatra Mark and Spencer McIntosh.

Thank you to the PTA for the Outdoor Adventure Day
I am going to throw it out there and suggest that the PTA Outdoor Adventure Day of 2018 would be one of the best yet.  Looking around, watching kids and talking to parents it was clear that the objective of this day was clearly achieved.  A fun event for our children and our community.  It was great to see a full field in the parent and teachers race.  For those of you who were there you would of noted that I was not very close to the front of the field but probably glad I wasn’t given the injuries suffered by the front runners.

Our new Facebook page
We had some issues with our school facebook page earlier in the year but now have it up and running and bullet proof.  I would encourage all to follow the great things that happen at St Mary’s and keep informed through the link below.  

www.facebook.com/stmarystga/

Lateness and Absence
We have concerns about frequent lateness and absence of some students at St Mary’s.

Children are considered to have unsatisfactory attendance at school over the course of the year if they miss 16 days of school or 8% of their time at school. 

This means that if a child has had 4 days off school in a term the school is concerned. 10% of a child’s time at our school (Year 1 – Year 8) is 32 weeks (3 terms), and 20% is 64 weeks (6 terms) Children who are not at school do not learn as easily or with the same rate of progress as other children. Staff, parents, children and the community have responsibilities in this area.

If students experienced more than a day between one opportunity to interact with a new idea and a subsequent opportunity to interact with the new idea, then forgetting occurred and instructional opportunity was wasted.     Alton-Lee, (2003)

Children’s lunches and rubbish
As a parent I know the challenges in trying to ensure children have a good lunch to eat during the school day.  This of course involves packing and wrapping food items.  As you know in an effort to reduce our landfill rubbish as a school we ask that all food related rubbish is taken home.  It is great in theory!  Unfortunately we are finding a lot of zip lock plastic bags around our school site.  If there is an alternative or a way that we can eliminate packaging all together I would encourage you to explore it.

Ben Fuller
Principal