Newsletter - 14 October 2021

Issue 31

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Principal's Report

Appreciations …  a big thanks to our Captains’ Crew – our grade 6 school and class captains and vice-captains .  Every week they join Shannon and me at our virtual meetings and are only too happy to assist with planning events and assisting with our assembly videos. A big thanks from me!

Leadership changes at FWPS
I am very pleased to share the news that long term staff member and Leading Teacher, Carolyn Lockie has been selected in an internal process to the role of acting Assistant Principal, effective at the start of 2022. Carolyn is looking forward to joining Liz and me as the principal class team at FWPS.  This role will be busy and varied but will not include day to day classroom duties.  Starting the new role officially in term 1 next year of course allows Carolyn to continue teaching 4CL through until the end of the school year.  We certainly did not want to disrupt our students any more as they return to onsite learning over the next few weeks.

Return to onsite learning - step by step
While I will firstly acknowledge that return to face-to-face onsite learning brings an understandable level of anxiety for students, staff members and parents, the strongest emotion being expressed is of relief and joy in being able to have our students back in school where (during term), they belong. 

We are very much looking forward to welcoming our prep students back to their classrooms next week (week 3) when they return to school from Monday to Wednesday - step 1 of our graduated return to onsite learning.  On Thursday and Friday, it will be step 2 of the process, as the grade one and two students return to onsite learning (and the preps revert to remote learning).  This pattern continues the following week with step 3, the addition of the grade three and four students returning on the Tuesday and Wednesday of week 4, followed by step 4, the grade five and six students on the Thursday and Friday of that week.  Except for Melbourne Cup Day, during week 5, the groups will continue with onsite learning on these days, each week until step 5, Friday 5th November when all children are due to learn at school.

On all days that that specific grades are not required onsite, the students will be supported with the continuation of remote learning at home. 

Phew, that’s all a bit confusing, so we have included a table summarising each step (see page 2).

In line with the Department of Education policy, teachers will not continue to provide a remote learning program for families who choose to remain at home on days that learning is being provided for onsite.  However, in cases where students are required to remain in isolation, a limited learning program will be provided.

We also remind families that yesterday was the last Wellbeing Wednesday, as we prepare for the return onsite. Wednesdays for remote students will continue to follow the same format as other remote learning days until your child's year level is back onsite.

Access on student return
From next Monday two gates (main gate on Argyle St and pedestrian gate on Blandford St) will be opened at 8.50 am for our prep students to return to the classrooms for the first time since August 5th.

Parents and carers will be welcome to accompany their children to outside the classroom door. Unfortunately, teachers will not be available for a chat. While there is no requirement to scan the school location URL code when entering the grounds, that step is required when any parent or carer visits the office, the only indoors location we anticipate visitors accessing. 

There will not be an opportunity for parents or carers to enter the classrooms. Your support in this matter will be appreciated. 

Gates will be closed at 9 am sharp.  After that time, any student arriving late will need to enter (and sign in) via the office (still temporarily located on the oval via the centre gate on Blandford St).  Gates will again be opened from 3.20 pm to allow parents collect the children from the line up area outside the classroom. After collecting your child, we expect all families to leave promptly.  There will not be an opportunity to catch up with friends or play in the school yard. Students who are booked for Their Care should make their way straight to the Gecko building to be signed in.

Masks
All adults continue are required to wear masks inside and outside when not at home, so that of course means all adults visiting our school will be expected to wear masks at all times.

It is recommended and encouraged for students to wear masks for indoor use.  This has now been made a requirement for students in grades 3 to 6.  We will encourage students to being their own and if comfortable the use of reusable masks is obviously preferred.  We do understand that for many of us surgical masks have proven far more comfortable for all day use.

Absences due to illness
Students who have tested positive to coronavirus or are in home isolation due to being exposed to a tier 1 site must stay at home until cleared by Department of Health officials.  It is really important that parents inform us of any such instances, to enable us to consider the health implications for classes that may be affected and in order to provide learning support for students affected. 

Our TheirCare program
will again be open for any students on the days they are attending for onsite lessons.  For instance, over the next few weeks preps will be able to be booked on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, but not on Thursdays and Fridays.  Grade ones and two students won’t be eligible to attend TheirCare on Mondays to Wednesdays, but will be able to be booked on Thursdays and Fridays.  Of course, students in other grades will be able to attend TheirCare when they return to onsite learning.  We know Nelly, Luke and the team will be really pleased to see so many children returning to the program.

Canteen
The Lunchbox 3012 will open on Friday, 5th November, the day all students return for the first time collectively for onsite lessons.

Leaving FWPS?

If your family is planning to move to another school for the 2022 school year we require to hear from you as soon as possible in writing.  The complex task of forming class lists is a priority for us over the next few weeks and the earlier we can factor in student changes, the more accurate those lists will be. This does not apply to Grade 6 leavers. Please complete in the following link : Leaving FWPS in 2021


Class Placement for 2022
Please note, particularly for some parents who have already responded, that it has been clearly stated that specific requests for friends will not be accommodated. 

During Term 4, the teaching teams will spend many hours preparing grades for next year. Throughout this process, the needs of all students are considered from a social, academic and behavioural perspective. 

In limited situations, we may consider requests from families regarding their child's 2022 grade placement.

If you believe that the following listed considerations are relevant to your child's needs, we advise that this form must be completed by the due date. This is the formal communication for this process, so we will not be accepting phone calls or emails on these matters.

All matters will be dealt with sensitively; however, we must stress that requests for specific teachers, classes or friends will not be accommodated. Throughout this process, teachers look for compatible learning partners and encourage the development of new friendships. Requests related to learning, behavioural or social requirements will be considered on merit and in consultation with key staff members.

If after consideration of the above stipulations, you believe your child’s class placement requires special consideration enter your request at:  Grade Placement 2022

If you have made such a request in the past, please note that any previous accommodation or agreement will have been made for that year only.  If the concern is still relevant, a request will again need to be made.

Please note that all communication on this matter will need to be received via this form, no later than Friday 29th October.

You will receive an automatically generated email acknowledgement after submission. We may seek further discussions or clarification with families.

Considerations for grade placements

Class placement requires the collective efforts of all staff throughout a considerable process. Initially, the teachers meet to consider the relative academic and social abilities of the children and then begin to place them in grades, considering their current friendship groups. Please note that this is based on teachers’ knowledge of the children. The most important consideration however, will always relate to placement with compatible learners.

A range of factors are considered based on some simple principles:-

·         classes need to have a gender balance

·         classes need an academically compatible balance

·         classes need a “social behaviour” balance

·         children need to be placed with familiar faces while at the same time acknowledging that some children work better with certain students than others irrespective of friendships

As a Tribes school we strongly believe it is essential for children to be challenged to make new friends as these opportunities often lead to wonderful new friendships and relationships never before imagined. Additionally, it is unrealistic to expect that we will travel through life with only one set of friends.

Students need opportunities to work through social challenges with care, support and understanding from the adults in their life. Please do not expect that a student with whom a child had an issue with one year will never be in the same grouping with them again. We need to help children learn to adapt and skill themselves up to deal with all kinds of people and most importantly, give relationships a second opportunity to flourish.

Cheers,
Brendan

 

Coming Events

Return to School 
Week 3 
Mon 18 Oct - Wed 20 OctPrep 
Thurs 21 Oct - Fri 22 OctGrade 1 & 2 
Week 4  
Mon 25 Oct - Wed 27 OctPrep
Tue 26 Oct - Wed 27 OctGrade 3 & 4
Thurs 28 Oct - Fri 29 OctGrade 1 & 2
Thurs 28 Oct - Fri 29 OctGrade 5 & 6
Week 5 - Tue 2 is a Public Holiday 
Mon 1 Nov & Wed 3 Nov & Fri 5 NovPrep
Wed 3 Nov & Fri 5 NovGrade 3 & 4
Thurs 4 Nov & Fri 5 NovGrade 1 & 2
Thurs 4 Nov & Fri 5 NovGrade 5 & 6
  
Friday 5 November All classes return to school
  

Pupil of the Week

NAME

GRADE

APPRECIATION FOR:

Noah

PAC

Participating in class Webex meetings and regularly contributing thoughtful appreciations to the community circle.  Feel proud! 

Athena

PAF

Sharing with her classmates about her favourite animal- the butterfly and explaining why. Well done!

Arcadia

PAK

The positive way you engage in our WebEx meetings and for applying your personal best to all tasks- keep up the wonderful effort.

Annie

PHS

The amazing effort you apply to all your tasks during online learning.  Absolutely excellent effort.

Malik

PKS

Interesting facts you shared about cheetahs. You spoke clearly and used expression to engage your audience. Well done!

Maggie

1CW

For her enthusiasm and the growth mindset set that she displays each day during remote learning. It is very appreciated.

Alma

1HP

Thoughtful, helpful contributions you make during whole class and small group WebEx meetings. We really appreciate all the helpful suggestions you offer.

Sid

1JN

Sharing his ideas during WebEx meetings as well as consistently applying his personal best effort to all tasks. Well done!

Alex

1LB

Consistently applying himself. Alex is reading with great confidence and using strategies to help him decide unfamiliar words. Keep it up Alex!

Rex

1TN

Your great participation and contributions to our reading and maths groups. Well done!

Hugo

2BD

Always being an active participant during WebEx meetings and showing great enthusiasm towards your learning.

Owen

2JI

Having a positive attitude, showing excitement to learn, being vibrant and energetic when engaging in online activities, especially in small maths groups. You are a wonderful role model. Sensational!

Maynard

2ES

Always sharing his interesting adventures during Community Circle time and bringing laughter to the 2ES virtual classroom.  Well done Maynard!

Ewan M

2LE

The great effort he puts into all learning tasks and activities.

Zoe

2LP

Consistently approaching remote learning with a positive attitude and doing her personal best in all tasks. Well done!

Amelya

3AC

Being so independent in her online learning and for trying her personal best. Well done Amelya!

George

3BC

Consistently applying effort during remote learning. Your contributions to discussions, attentive listening and questions are outstanding. Well done, George!

Samuel H

3JS

Always asking questions, seeking help when he needs it and putting in more time to improve his learning. 

Sanna

3MK

Contributing to discussion in your Literature Circle. Thanks for sharing, Sanna!

Ela

4LB

Being creative with words in our poetry. Well done Ela!!

Mila

4CL

Your descriptive free verse poem.

Great work.

Jonah

4DW

Being a kind and considerate classmate who has settled in amazingly well. It feels like you've been with us for 3 months, not 3 days! We're so glad you are a part of 4DW.

Abigail

5HK

Your effort and engagement during remote learning. Thank you for sharing some of your creations.

Indie

5KT

Her cheerful morning greeting on Google Classroom each day and positive attitude to remote learning.

Robyn

5LC

Publishing your information report using strong presentation. It looks amazing and is presented beautifully Robyn!

Andrew

6MK

Applying your personal best effort to your homework reading reflection.

Moth

6MP

Your improved participation and effort in our online classes. Fantastic work!

Sage

6SM

Her enthusiasm, positivity, and willingness to share during remote learning. We love seeing those Lego creations!

Greta

6TS

Your enthusiasm and insight when sharing your ideas with the grade during our meetings. Wonderful attitude Greta!

Xanthe Dalziel

TheirCare

Her work during the holidays that really supported the staff at TheirCare. You’re an absolute champion, Thank you Xanthe.

Grade 5 /6 Update - Term 4

We welcome our students back to term 4 and, following the department guidelines for a staggered return to onsite learning, will expect our grade 5 and 6 students back onsite from Thursdays and Fridays in week 4 and 5, with all students returning from Monday to Friday from Week 6. We will continue to maintain a focus on developing the skills required to support their learning in literacy, numeracy and integrated studies through both remote and face to face teaching. 

Term 4 will look a little different, due to the current restrictions, but still remains one of the busiest times of year. This will include our end of year through school transition for our grade 5s and Statewide Orientation Day (TBC)  for our grade 6s. Although the camp scheduled for this term was unfortunately cancelled, we will be running an alternative school day dedicated to camp activities for our senior students later in the term. Details of other activities that we are planning, including the traditional senior Park to Park celebrations will be shared with families as we navigate through further lifting of restrictions.

Again, to accommodate guidelines, we have had to make some changes to our planned grade 6 graduation. The grade 6 graduation ceremony will take place in a revised format on Monday December 13th during the school day. We will be sending home information about this special event later in the term.

This term, our integrated studies unit investigates our health and wellbeing. The key areas of focus explore personal, social and community health, communicating and interacting for health and wellbeing, and contributing to healthy and active communities. Students will learn about resources to manage the social, emotional and physical changes and transitions associated with puberty. As part of this unit, we will be allowing students to ask their teachers questions about puberty and wellbeing. If you have any questions about this please contact your child’s classroom teacher.

Our daily literacy sessions continue to support our students by developing their skills to read and comprehend a variety of information and narrative texts. We will focus on the way we interpret explicit and implied information through Literature Circles, poetry and author studies. Reflecting on their reading provides students with the opportunity to deepen their understanding of a text. The writing process will investigate ‘presentation’ and ‘voice’  through the 6 +1 Traits of Writing. Students will develop  an anthology of writing to showcase their independent writing choices throughout the semester.

Mathematics in term 4 will focus on data, measurement, 3D shape and fractions and decimals. Students will be working on a range of tasks where they can make connections to real life experiences. 

In term 4, homework continues to emphasise the importance of reading independently for 30 - 40 minutes five times per week. A reading and Mathletics reflection log has been shared with students on their Google Drive so they can track their reading and provide evidence  that supports their reading goal. Students are also expected to complete 2 - 3  tasks a week on Mathletics and record both a reading and maths reflection.

Kind regards,
The Grade 5/6 team
Marco, Kim, Towela, Shannon, Kerrie, Lauren, Helena, Medha, Laura

Wellbeing - Returning to School

Most students and families are counting down the days until the school is open to all students again.  Teachers are also looking forward to welcoming everyone back!

Some students however may be anxious or worried about returning. Some students may struggle to be up early enough to be dressed and out the door on time.

It’s time to begin to prepare for the return to school with the following suggestions from Relationship Australia (NSW):

Starting to think about your kids returning to school post-lockdown? We’ve put together some info to help make things a little easier for everyone.

1. Listen and support your child
2. Create a plan to get back into routine
3. Give it time for everyone to settle down again
4. Get help if needed

https://www.relationshipsnsw.org.au/getting-back-to-the-new-normal-school/

If you’re concerned, talk to your GP, Kids Helpline, your child’s teacher, FWPS wellbeing team, or a local health service.
The Australian Psychological Society also has some information.

https://psychology.org.au/getmedia/6a3f524c-02c1-4e29-ac16-32a92a204599/20aps-ccn-is-transitioning-to-school-p1.pdf

Good luck with the return to school and see you soon!

Kaye Cameron
Social Worker

 

Victorian High Ability Program

This term at FWPS we have two more students selected to participate in the VHAP English program.

Congratulations to:

Timothy Griffioen 

Arlo Scott-Tuenen

These students were selected by the DET from grade 5 and 6 students across the state to participate in the online program.

They have already begun their work with an expert virtual teacher and will have the opportunity to learn exciting new concepts with other students from across the state during the virtual lessons throughout term 4.

Libby Buck

TheirCare

Dear parents, guardians, staff and friends! 

The first week back of term 1 has been really nice transition into back to school. The children have been very into Monopoly and Just Dance in the mornings and afternoon. Adam Borg seems to be our Monopoly champion with him winning on multiple occasions, however, Luke is out for his revenge in the following weeks watch this space for updates! 

      

Just Dance has been a real hit as well in the mornings and afternoons. We have some real movers and shakers in TheirCare and hope it continues through the term. We will try to film a session and get it into the newsletter in the coming weeks!  

     

This week’s TheirCare Star of the week is Xanthe Dalziel for all her work during the holidays that really supported the staff at TheirCare. You’re an absolute champion, Thank you Xanthe.

As some of you may have seen in the newsletters and assembly, TheirCare will be beginning their food drive for the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre in Footscray next week. If you can all start to look at your pantries and follow this space to see when we will be collecting. There will be a collection box at the front of the office and in the TheirCare room. They are looking for items with an extended shelf life. Currently the key items they are looking for are Tuna, Honey, Tomato paste, pickled vegetables, peanut butter, sweet and savoury biscuits, laundry power, toothbrushes, disposable razors. 

For other things and a more exact list have a look at; https://asrc.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/asrc-food-drive-april-may-2021.pdf  

For all families, if you have any questions about TheirCare and would like to come and have a chat please contact us on the details provided and we will help you as best we can.

TheirCare Team: 
Luke, Nelly, Louise & Eleanor 

Contact Details: 
Service Phone: 0487004072 
Service Email: footscraywest@theircare.com.au 
Head Office: 1300 072 410