We welcomed back our year 3-6 children last week. It was a smooth and calm transition for everyone. The consensus among students, staff and families has been that we all missed being with each other and interacting face to face. There are always positives that we take away from times of challenge. The staff have participated in an exercise to discuss the things they learnt while online learning and the things they do not wish to ‘snapback’ into. The importance of communication was a key factor in the success of the online learning as discussed by staff. They also felt they learnt more about their students and the individual dispositions each child displayed during this experience. The upskilling of technology use was given a resounding ‘thumbs up’ by staff and something they want to continue to explore and implement in everyday learning and home learning. The teachers have also engaged the children in similar discussions. It would be interesting for you to continue this discussion, with your child, around the dinner table!
A continued reminder that the safety of children when dropping off and picking up is of paramount importance. Please ensure the child enters the car from the pavement side not the road side. Thank you for your consideration at pick up and drop off. It continues to run smoothly. Remember it is a 3 minute zone (just enough time to stop and drop off or pickup) so be cautious how long you park in the afternoon. When stopping over the driveway you may pick up or drop off a passenger but you must remain inside your car. We have not had any parking officers here lately but we do know they randomly turn up to check on the traffic situation. The spaced out times to drop off/pickup have also helped ease congestion:
A-K arrive 8.30am-8.40am and pick up 3pm-3.10pm
L-Z arrive 8.45am-8.55am and pick up 3.15pm-3.25pm
Please note that in the morning the children must wait for staff to arrive at the gates to usher them in before they can enter the school grounds.
Over the past months I have been monitoring the use of our school grounds outside of school time. In the past it has not been an issue with the occasional family or teenager playing basketball or using the playground. Considering the times we now live in and for the safety of all children and staff, I will be installing higher fencing along Augustine’s Way. The Old Calder Highway side will have matching lower fencing and a modification of existing barriers to indicate that the school grounds are not public spaces. The current fences are also in need of replacing as they start to age and require constant upkeep. I am hoping work will start during the holidays but availability of material will dictate the start date. Jason and myself continue to sanitise and disinfect the playground each morning.
Thank you to everyone for your support in ensuring that the children are wearing the correct winter uniform. The mornings are becoming increasingly cold and the winter uniform is designed for warmth. I thank the Education Board for their contribution to the schools Uniform Policy at our recent ‘online’ meeting.
Another policy that the Education Board has discussed is the 'Student Mobile Phone Usage Policy. I have attached this also for your information. As the children have transitioned back into school it is important that we all practise the protocols in place. Please ensure you are not contacting your child during the day via email, watches etc..or that your child is contacting you. Please call the office if you need to send a message to your child and conversely we will contact you if we need to get a message to you.
Our term 2 holidays are just around the corner. We will be finishing at 1pm on Friday 26th June.
A-K to arrive for pickup at 1pm
L-Z to arrive for pickup at 1.15pm.
It is a casual clothes day with a gold coin donation going towards the local charity we support: ‘The Loaves & Fishes’. I take this opportunity to thank the children for their resilience and flexibility shown this term. You have all gained invaluable skills that will be with you for a lifetime. Thank you to all the St Augustine’s families. Your support, understanding and partnership has been outstanding during this term. Thank you to the St Augustine’s staff who continue to demonstrate such consideration for each child and a ‘can do’ attitude. During this term I have asked them to ‘jump’ on many occasions. Their response has always been, ‘How high?’ Well done everyone! It has truly been a collaborative effort to navigate our way through this term.
Enjoy the last week of term next week and have a restful and relaxing term break.