There has been a completely different feel (thankfully) at school this week after the long-awaited return of most students. Those who have returned to face-to-face learning have made a seamless transition back to school and teachers have mentioned how proud they are of the students’ attitude and effort. We have also noticed that, understandably, the need to work on building the stamina and focus for all students in the next few weeks so that we can maximise learning opportunities.
While the phased return inevitably creates some complexity, it is so important to have our students back onsite at the earliest opportunity, enabling them to reconnect with their peers and school communities.
We have noticed that the students are tired and although the staggered return to school may not be perfect, a by-product of this is that students can ease back into life at school without burning out too quickly. Over the next fortnight, despite the logistical difficulties that are attached to the staggered return, students being on-site for a limited number of days per week might be a long-term blessing in disguise for them.
A key focus as students return onsite, and through Term 4 and into 2022, will be monitoring and supporting both student wellbeing and learning. We will again provide a great balance of excellent teaching and learning with the need to invest time in supporting students to re-engage with school through important wellbeing activities. These will be designed to help build students’ resilience, reinforce strong social behaviours and support students to enjoy being with their classmates once again.
The focus on wellbeing and learning – will be the key features of our 2022 Annual Implementation Plan, as it will be for ALL schools across the State. The wellbeing focus is a positive development from the Department of Education and complements our school’s belief that to learn well, students need to be well.
Student Free days
A note to confirm that we have been forced to shift our November 1st professional learning day as staff cannot undertake this learning all together in a face-to-face setting. November 1st will be a day of face to face learning (Foundation students) or Remote and Flexible learning (all other year levels).We are fortunate to have our Department of Education facilitator available on December 16 to run this session for staff on ‘Positive Behaviours’ This date has also been chosen to limit the impact to students’ learning this Term and acknowledges the importance of teaching staff being in front of their class as often as possible over the next few weeks.
This change means that our students’ last day of school will be Wednesday December 15. If the fatigue we have seen from our students this week is a good guide, the earlier (1 day) finish to the school year will come at a very good time.
2022 Parent Payments.
Planning for 2022 is well underway and we will again be aiming to provide a rich and diverse learning program for our students. An updated family payment policy (including a new fee structure) will be sent home in the next few weeks which will outline how these important contributions help us to provide programs that exceed the basic DET curriculum.
As a school we pride ourselves on offering students the best possible opportunities for future success. Your voluntary contributions have been invaluable in creating a successful, holistic education program – made possible through the support received from our student families.
Specifically, this support has funded a range of initiatives including:
- Expansive wellbeing programs for development of mental health faculty
- Robotics resourcing and programs to aid STEM learning
- Digital learning opportunities and devices
- Construction of our new school oval
- Decodable readers for English & READ programs
With your help, we will again be in a position to provide the best possible education and support for our students
Individual Booklists are not required in 2022.
In response to the financial impact of the last 2 years, our school will be purchasing stationery items for ALL students in 2022 (a saving of between $65-85 per student).
This year we’re doing things a bit differently to streamline parent payments and 2022 booklists. Rather than sending out individual booklists, we will purchase all necessary items to enable students to access the curriculum, in bulk, including exercise books, text books, paper, folders, document wallets, scrapbooks, clipboards, display books, magazine holders, tissues etc;
Ordering in bulk will allow us to secure the best possible prices for these items.
Students will still need to bring some pencil case items – pens, pencils, eraser, pencil sharpener, ruler, coloured pencils, textas etc – from home.
Grade structures for 2022
As we have continued to grow as a school, and our student numbers have steadily and predictably increased, we will be running straight grades across all Year levels next year.
There will be a few adjustments to the positioning of students throughout the school with the brand new Permanent modular classrooms at the back of the oval able to be used for the first time.
We will again use the open plan space in the STEM centre that our current Year 3s have successfully learnt and taught in this year and next year’s Foundation students will be housed in the main red brick building.
We recognise and understand the importance of fostering and maintaining friendship groups, as well as developing new ones. We also understand that it is equally important for students to mix and learn with peers who have different interests. Information about 2022 class structures and student friendship requests is included in the attachment. Please take the time to read this to help us make the best decisions for your child and our school.
We will run 23 classes in 2022
|Number of classes|
|Foundation||4||Main Admin building|
|Year 1||5||Building between the Hall and STEM center|
|Year 2||4||Permanent modular Buildings near the Bike Shed|
|Year 3||4||In the Learning center alongside French Ave|
|Year 4||2||In the Learning center alongside French Ave|
|Year 5||2||Permanent modular Buildings at the back of the oval|
|Year 6||2||STEM center space|
As well as keeping classes as small as we can, we have invested heavily in extra support and extension staff to complement the DET’s Tutor Learning program. This is a significant investment aimed at achieving our school and Department of Education goals for students that ‘have thrived in the remote learning environment, have maintained their learning progress and those who need extra learning and wellbeing support……In 2022 we will continue to focus on student learning – with an increased focus on numeracy’
Thank you as always for your support through these challenging times. I acknowledge that there is a great deal that you are being asked to manage right now. The staggered return to school, the change to start and finish times and adjusted learning timetables are steps have been put in place to ensure that the full return to onsite learning, and more normal routines, can happen as safely and as quickly as possible.
We may not be there yet, but we’re closer than we were this time last week.
Take care and stay safe