Newsletter - St Patrick's Catholic Primary School Griffith

Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, grace us with hope, so that by staying awake
we may read the signs of the times and always be ready to recognize your Son
on the faces of people, in the beauty of creation, and in the holiness of the
Church, for he is Lord, for ever and ever. Amen
Wednesday, 3rd December 2014
Term Four, Week 9
1st Sunday of Advent
Is 63:16-17, 64: 1, 3-8
1 Cor 1: 3-9
Mk 13:33-37
(The Necessity for Watchfulness)
Monday 8th December
Principal’s Visit to Year Four
Throughout the last two weeks, I have had the pleasure to visit classrooms for short
periods of time to release teachers from their classrooms in support of their report
writing. During my time visiting the classrooms, it was affirming to see our students
engaging in familiar routine situations independently. I saw students collaboratively
working together to solve problems, using resources that have been supported by
the Parents and Friends Association such as reading materials, and high levels of
activity that engaged their creative and critical thinking skills with Year Five students
making iMovies. In Year Four, students were happily displaying their creative
drawings and discussion around Advent as part of their morning prayers. The visits to
classrooms and my engagement with the students are a top priority and highlight of
my school day. Thank you teachers and staff for the dedication and work you do in
educating our future.
Feast of the Immaculate Conception
Mass –
Whole School - 9.30am
Sacred Heart Church
Parents Most Welcome
P&F AGM – 7pm in School Library
Friday 12th December
K-2 Christmas Concert in the
Fr O’Dea Hall at 10am
Followed by Sausage Sizzle Picnic
Lunch in the School Grounds
End of Year Assesmblies
Monday 15 December
Class End of Year Assemblies held in
each classroom in the morning.
Times will be advised for each Year
Whole School End of Year Awards
Ceremony – 12pm in the
Fr O’Dea Hall
Tuesday 16th December
Year 6 End of Year Mass and
6.30pm Sacred Heart Church
Wednesday 17 December
Final day for Students 2014
1 [email protected]
Celebrating Advent
The liturgical season of Advent marks the time of spiritual
preparation by the faithful before Christmas. Advent begins on the
Sunday closest to the Feast of St. Andrew the Apostle (Nov. 30). It
spans four Sundays and four weeks of preparation, although the
last week of Advent is usually truncated because of when Christmas
falls. For instance, this year, the fourth Sunday of Advent is
obviously on Sunday the 21st and then there are four days leading
up to Christmas Day on December 25th. For us, the preparation for
Christmas is an important theme at St Patrick’s and our parish
Sacred Heart. Last Sunday, as a community we welcomed Advent with Fr Grace lighting the first Advent candle at Mass. This
significant event gives us a vision of our lives as Christians and shows us the possibilities of life. The vision of life that Advent
gives us is twofold; it looks back to the first coming of Christ at Bethlehem, and it looks to the future when Christ will come
again. When Christ comes again, his presence will no
longer be hidden behind the signs and symbols of the
liturgy or the words of the Scriptures. His presence among
us will be revealed in all its fullness, a presence that will be
perfect and complete our holistic community.
Continuing the Journey of Contemporary Education
Last Monday, Mr Wedesweiler and the Kindergarten staff
visited Holy Spirit Primary School in Lavington. This
initiative is part of the process for the implementation for
the refurbishments for our new learning spaces next year.
It was exciting to hear the feedback from the staff not only
on their innovative classrooms but to actually see how the
children learn differently. In essence, 21 Century learning,
in which we are into our fourteenth year, guides us in
creating new learning experiences and new learning
spaces that will ensure all our students reach a high quality
education within a modern innovative and fun environment.
School Reports
This week Semester 2 Student Reports were posted. All teachers have worked
extremely hard and developed some feedback for parents and students. Report cards
are only one part of our communication process between the home and school.
Students in Years One to Six will be requested to meet in the Fr O’Dea Hall at 8.50am
on Thursday 29 January for a Welcome Back Assembly and allocation to learning
Parent Teacher Interviews
Mr Wedesweiler has made available to all parents an opportunity to book an interview time with
teachers. The SOBS site will only be open for a few more days as the number of days available
for interviews is decreasing. Parents, whilst it is pleasing to see the invitation taken up, I ask
that you do not ask teachers who your child’s teacher is for next year, as it would be rather
uncomfortable to disclose this information. The teachers will inform the school leadership
team of any such questions as part of our open and honest communication strategy at St
School Fees Outstanding for 2014
As the academic year continues to move towards closure, I will be contacting parents
regarding outstanding school fees. I wish to sincerely acknowledge all the families who
have honoured their financial commitment to the school. I have in the previous term and
this term made many attempts to contact families in reference to non payment of school
fees for 2014. If any family is experiencing difficulties with payment, please contact the
school office for a confidential appointment before end of the term. All families at St
Patrick’s primary school have signed a contract to honour their financial commitment to
the school. The Parish Priest and School Council support the notion to endorsing the
withdrawal of Semester Two school reports. I encourage families not to let this situation
occur by making time to talk with me, so that together we can find a positive solution. My
door is always open.
2 [email protected]
Once again well done to the students who received awards at our weekly assembly. Your hard
work and commitment is acknowledged throughout the school community. Awards are very
much part of our Virtues Program where students are supported and acknowledge by the
school community for their commitment being the best they can. Please go to our website or
Facebook page for more photos!
Classroom Connections
Oh what a week! Connecting around the school we
acknowledged Melissa Brown’s contribution to the dance
program at St Patricks, Mr Wood for his amazing stage
creations, Mr Moraschi for orchestrating the concert with the
many talents of the staff and students. The assembly
concluded with a performance by the students which was
truly spectacular! McAuley House shared a short reading
from the bible on Justice, students prepared for Advent, new
reading resources being used in classrooms, birthdays
celebrated across the school and students engaged in the
many sport activities throughout the school. Want to see
more? Then visit the school website or Facebook for more
photos. Now that is the spirit of learning!
Administration Staff Away
Last Monday and Tuesday our Administration team was away
in Wagga for training on the financial system used throughout the Diocese. Throughout the two days, our staff engaged in
learning the data base system and meet people from other Catholic Schools. I wish to express my gratitude and thanks to Mrs
Kim DeMartin and Mrs Ashley DePaoli for filling in whilst Christine, Alissa and Lorraine were away.
Have a great week and thanks for reading!
May the feet of God walk with you
And His hand hold you tight
May the eye of God rest on you
And His ear hear your cry
May the smile of God be for you
And His breath give you life throughout Advent.
David Adams-Jones,
Merit Awards at Assembly
Year One
Year Two
Year Three
Angelo Licastro
Tahli Connor
Nicholas Codemo
Ashvin Sharma
Peter Haslett
Emily Rossetto
Chloe Zamin
Ravninder Kaur
Patrick Tokai
Lachlan Emery
Joey Nardi
Myah Thomas
Milly McGregor
Jordan Chisale
Blake Aloisi
Anshu Patel
Sahara Moon
Saul Railo
Grace Bell
Emmerson Waide
Vishva Mestrige
Sean Culgan
Tiarnah Reginato
Ellie Walsh
Taskveer Chuga
Harrison Smith
Joshua Trotter
Year Four
Year Five
Year Six
Ashmeen Dhillon
Devarsh Pancholi
Fergus Shelton
Alannah Taylor
Mason Ashcroft
Kaden Olivero
Imreet Singh
Victor Catanzariti
Lucy Campbell
Martianne Javier
Luke Stone
Karanbir Singh Sidhu
Stephanie Bertoldo
3 [email protected]
Tannaya Jones & Saul Railo for making Jesus real by
cleaning up rubbish around the infants bins without being told to.
From our Assistant Principal
Virtue of the Fortnight: Love
Love is a special feeling that fills your heart.
You show love in a smile, a pleasant way of
speaking, a thoughtful act or a hug. Love is
treating people and things with special care
and kindness because they mean so much to
you. Love is treating other people just as you
would like them to treat you – with care and
Without love people feel alone. When they
don’t feel they matter to anyone, they
become unhappy. Sometimes they act angry
and don’t let others get close. Everyone
wants to be liked. Everyone likes to be loved.
When you are being loving, you help others
to feel important. They become gentler and
kinder. Love is contagious. It keeps spreading.
2015 Student Leaders
We offer our congratulations to our Year Five
students for standing up and putting themselves forward for leadership positions in our school: School Leaders, Social Justice
Leaders and House Leaders. The process of speaking and voting has now been concluded and the votes have been tallied. The
announcement of the 2015 Leaders will be made on Monday 15 December at the Whole School End of Year Assembly.
2015 Kindergarten Orientation
Our Transition program concluded last Friday 28 November. This Transition Program is aimed at having fun, with hands on
activities promoting a learning and stimulating environment, giving our 2015 Kindergarten students an opportunity to interact
with one another under the careful supervision and leadership of one of our Kindergarten Teachers and a Teacher’s Aide. Our
current Kindergarten students continued their learning program as per their normal routine with one of our regular casual
teachers leading the learning.
Semester Two Reports
Student reports were posted home on Tuesday 2 December. Should your child’s report not arrive by Friday 5 December,
please contact the Administration Office.
Parent Teacher Interviews
We will be using our online booking system (SOBS) for our optional Semester Two Parent & Teacher Interviews again this year. A
full set of instructions is available in this week’s newsletter. Parents unable to make a booking online are asked to contact the
office and leave their details and I will arrange for assistance to be provided. Each interview will be for 10 minutes and all
interviews will be conducted in classrooms for the week of 8th December to Friday 12th December. Teachers will be setting their
own times of availability before and after school time.
The window for Parent Booking opens on Monday 1st December at 9am and closes on Friday 5th December at 5pm.
Parental engagement
More than ever parents are turning to schools for advice, information and direction about how to raise their kids. Yet their
issues are increasingly complex, demanding specific advice. At St. Patrick’s we seek to provide assistance often and share our
experiences and information to help you. Attached to this newsletter is an article by Michael Grose featuring ideas for every
parent to build better relationships with their children. At
St. Patrick’s we believe that building relationships with
children is every parent’s dream. This article we have
shared with you has some simple, timely tips based
around Easing Children’s Anxiety.
4 [email protected]
End of 2014 Arrangements
As part of our natural process of listening to your feedback and being proactive in our communication, I am writing to you with
updated dates regarding the End of Year Arrangements. On behalf of the School Executive Team and The Sacred Heart Parish
We trust that this information will assist with your planning of attendance at events.
Monday 8 December –
Friday 12 December
Friday 12 December
Monday 15 December
Tuesday 16 December
Opportunity for End of
Year Parent Teacher
For Whom?
Parents and
Teachers of K-6
Time & Venue
Times to be advised via SOBS from Monday 1st
K-2 Christmas Concert
followed by picnic lunch in
school grounds
K-2 Students,
families and
10am, Fr. O’Dea Hall
Class Award Ceremonies
Years K-5 Students and families
End of Year Awards
Assembly &
Announcement of 2015
School Leaders
Whole of School and Families of
Years 5 &6 Students.
All families warmly encouraged to
Year 6 End of School Mass
and Graduation
Year 6 Students, Teachers and
Individual Classrooms
Times to be advised
12pm Fr. O’Dea Hall
Sacred Heart Parish Church
Visit to Holy Spirit Lavington
On Monday 1st December I had the privilege and pleasure of accompanying our
2015 Kindergarten Teachers, Danielle Martinello, Kayla Page and Sarah McNicol, to our sister
school Holy Spirit in Lavington, near Albury.
The purpose of our visit was to engage with the students and teachers in their contemporary
learning spaces and bring our learnings back to Griffith as we continue on our own journey here.
We were fortunate to see students interacting and working and fundamentally learning in open
spaces designed to engage the senses of the learner. Group work on cushions, on couches, on
ottomans was commonplace and everywhere we looked and everyone we spoke to knew what
their learning task and objective was. We saw and spoke to teachers who had initially been
sceptical, but had now eagerly embraced the concepts and saw the massive benefits to
themselves and their students as learners. The opportunities for co-planning, reliable data
gathering and a common language were all evidenced as planned situations to maximise student
learning outcomes. Our personal tour by Mr. Mark MacLean gave us great insight into the journey
undertaken thus far and the passion for the ways of understanding and developing each learner to develop their true potential.
The cry of "Ready, Fire, Aim" echoed throughout the school.
The visit ignited a spark which was fanned by our enthusiasm for the new and a fire of conversation about what could and
should be evidenced in a 21st Century Classroom erupted in the car on our drive home. I know that we were all grateful for the
Professional and Personal learning opportunity that it was to visit and we are very keen to make it a reality for our students here
in Griffith.
Maintain & share your awesomeness,
Alan Wedesweiler, Assistant Principal
Online Booking – Parent Teacher Interviews
How to book your Parent/Teacher Interviews
NOTE: Information entered into this booking system is outside of the school's
network and therefore under the privacy information policy of the website – their policy states that they will not disclose this information to
any other party, and nor will the information be used for any other purpose
than managing these interviews.
Visit the school website and click on the link for 'Parent/Teacher interviews'
5 [email protected]
2. Type in your email address
3. Enter your name and contact details
Enter your child’s full name and select year level from the
drop down menu
Click on the ‘Book Interviews’ box to book your interviews
Select all teachers you require interviews with by ticking
the box
Scroll and select available slots with each staff member.
The green slots are available. Grey slots are unavailable. As you
click slots they will turn pink and your child's name will appear in
the slot. You will only be able to book once with each teacher, and
only once in each time slot. Ideally you want to select interview
slots that are chronological so that you can move from one
interview to the next without having to wait around. Once you
have selected your interview slots click the 'Save' button.
Once selected you have the option of emailing or printing
your interview booking times. If you select the email option
the schedule is sent to the email address you initially
6 [email protected]
7 [email protected]
RE News
This weekend is the beginning of the new Church year, starting with the season of Advent. Advent is a unique time as we once
again prepare to focus on the significance of the birth of Jesus. As a family we can prepare for this special event by saying sorry
to anyone we may have hurt and try to mend those relationships before Christmas. We can think of those less fortunate than
ourselves. There are many who will be lonely having nowhere to go at this time and others with little food or drink and
especially no money for gifts. It can be a time for the children to sort out extra things they don’t use or wear anymore and are in
good condition that could be given to St. Vincent de Paul. I will send out a note regarding gift donations for a school donation to
Vinnies Christmas appeal. Food, snacks, drinks and even a new small gift for a baby, young boy or girl or teenage would be
greatly appreciated. With your family you may like to make your own Advent wreath and light a new candle at meal time and
think about the coming of that special baby, Jesus, and the good he brought to the world and what we can also do.
The Significance of the Advent Wreath:
• The Advent wreath is full of symbols of our Catholic faith.
• The wreath shape – the circular shape of the wreath, symbolises no beginning or end, the eternity of
God and the everlasting life found in Christ.
• Greenery - the greenery of the Advent wreath symbolises continuous life.
• Candles - the four candles represent the weeks of Advent. The three purple candles symbolise the
prayer, penance and good works we try to do during Advent. The pink candle is lit on the third Sunday
of Advent and stands for rejoicing, hope and expectation of the birth of Jesus.
We light candles for Advent because Christ is the light of the world.
Have a great week
Maryanne Dodd (Religious Co-ordinator)
P& F News
AGM for Parents and Friends Association: Meeting on Monday 8th December at 7:00pm.
“Put your hand up and become engaged in our P&F Association in 2015!
All parents are invited to the Annual General Meeting for the new positions on the
Executive of the St Patrick’s Parents and Friends Association on December 8th. This is an
exciting time of the year where the outgoing P&F members and myself will share with
everyone their achievements throughout 2014. The meeting will begin at 7:00pm and
will be held in the school library. After the AGM is completed, the election of the new
members will be held, it is expected that 2014 Year One parents will fulfil the new
executive positions that includes:
President, Treasurer, Secretary & Executive Members
From a Member of the P&F Committee....
Keep an eye/ear out for our AGM next month where nominations for next year’s committee will be
held. Traditionally the Year 2 parents run the P&F, however we welcome all parents to join. Joining
the P&F is a fantastic opportunity for parents to make new lifelong friends (as I have) and is a great
way to understand how the school works. Your children will love seeing you be a part of the school
community and knowing that you are taking an active role in their schooling through fundraising
for resources such as books and equipment, sporting and artistic events. It is hard work, but the joy
of seeing the children’s smiles is our reward.
Pastoral Care
Dear Members of our School Community,
The Seasons for Growth celebration party was a happy experience for the children. Each
child released a red balloon to indicate a new beginning. Another important season in the
church’s liturgical calendar is the Advent Season,which commenced last Sunday. Advent
means “coming and waiting”. There are three meanings of “coming” that Christians
describe in Advent. The first, and most thought of is the birth and death of Jesus, for our
salvation. The second can happen now as Jesus wants to come into our lives. And the third
will happen in the future when Jesus comes back to the world as King and Judge. May this
Advent Season help us to cease the moment so that we may reflect where we are at in our
spiritual journey and appreciate what we have, such as our family, health, work and faith.
Many Blessings,
Cath Catanzariti , Pastoral Care Coordinator
8 [email protected]
News from the Parish
EVENING WITH FRANCIS SULLIVAN: Tuesday 9 December commencing at 7.30pm in the Parish Hall.
Francis Sullivan, Chair of the Truth, Justice and Healing Council, which represents the Catholic
Church in Australia at the Royal Commission on child abuse in institutions, Francis will speak for 40
mins with a Q & A at the conclusion, followed by some supper. All welcome.
Please Pray for
We pray for all the members in our school community who
are sick and for all families who have lost loved ones.
If you have any special intentions for prayers that you would
like us to include in this section, please email Alissa in the
office on [email protected]
Dear Lord,
We entrust to your love, care & healing all families who are
experiencing grief as a result of the loss of loved ones. May your
healing spirit also restore to good health all who are ill and
others that may be enduring difficult
times in their lives.
In Jesus’ name, AMEN.
Fr Grace
Dear Friends,
On Sunday Advent began. This is a very special time to prepare for the magnificent feast day
of Christmas. The four weeks of Advent reminds us that God is faithful; he has and he will
fulfil his promises. A universal symbol of this beautiful truth is the Advent wreath with its four
candles, which Christians have been using for more than 1000 years. Its circular shape gives it
no beginning or end - perfectly symbolizing the eternity of God and his love, and
the everlasting life that Christ wants to give all of us. The different types of branches used are
all from evergreen trees, trees that remain green even during the coldest, darkest days of
winter. They remind us that Christ's love remains fresh and strong even in life's most difficult
moments - he never abandons us. Traditional wreaths include laurel and holly branches. The laurel branch was an ancient
symbol of victory; it reminds us that on the first Christmas Christ came to bring victory over sin and Satan. The holly branches
are bordered with small, prickly edges, reminding us of Christ's crown of thorns, of the suffering by which he won his victory
over sin and evil. The candle light represents Christ himself, who is the light of the world: his Word shows us how we should live,
and his love, expressed especially in the Eucharist, fills our hearts with comfort, like the warmth of a supernatural fire. We light
the candles gradually throughout Advent, because we know that the joy of salvation doesn't come fully into our lives all at once.
Rather, life as a Christian is a journey, a relationship with Jesus that has to be constantly renewed, just as a new candle is lit each
week. If we are faithful to this friendship and don't abandon our journey, the fullness of joy will eventually be ours. Christ
has promised us all of this, and he wants us to rejoice in these promises, confident that since he is faithful, he can and will fulfil
them. This Sunday at Mass we’ll lit our second candle; I hope to see you there.
God Bless,
Fr Grace,
Sacred Heart Griffith Parish Priest
Chess Club
Sydney Chess Tournament
Last weekend three of our students, Piri Karunapalan, Prateek Prasaad and Brock Twigg travelled
to Sydney to compete in the Primary Schools Country Chess finals. The competition, run by the
NSW Junior Chess League, is a state wide primary schools competition that catholic, state and
private primary schools from metropolitan and country regions participate in. The competition
was held on Saturday at the Salvation Army Centre in Glebe with students travelling from
country regions around NSW to compete. Our students participated against schools from Port
Macquarie, Singleton, Wollongong, Coonabarabran, Milthorpe and Belair.
The standard of chess and sportsmanship was outstanding
and Piri, Prateek, and Brock can be very proud of their
efforts and results. The overall country champions at the
end of the day were Wollongong and during the
competition St Patrick’s were able to beat Wollongong 2
games to 1 indicating how close the competition between
the teams was. We would like to thank Mr Adams-Jones and the St Patrick’s community for
supporting the three boys throughout the competition. A big thank you also goes to Mr Phil
Twigg who accompanied us on our trip.
A list of the final standings can be seen below.
9 [email protected]
NSW Junior Chess League Country Finals - Standings
Place Name
Score Playoff
1-2 Westport
21 1.0 2nd
21 2.0 1st
3 Millthorpe
4 Coonabarabran
5 Belair
6 Singleton Heights 15
7 St Patrick's Griffith 13.5
8 Nemingha
9 Sturt
In further chess news we are well under way in our annual St Patrick’s Chess Competition. The final three from stages two and
three have been determined.
Stage Two: Kush Patel, Adam Linos and Fergus Shelton
Stage Three: Prateek Prasaad, Brock Twigg and Micheal Montagner.
This week the boys will play a series of matches with the winners announced during our awards day ceremony. Peter Moraschi
Canteen Roster:
Wednesday 3 December: K DeMartin, C Snaidero, S Bell-Smith
Thursday 4 December: K Adams-Jones, C Pollard, P Bell
Friday 5 December: J Murray, L Campbell, R Savage
Monday 8 December: K Andreatta, J Salvestro, T Feltracco
Tuesday 9 December: B Serena, J Gulielmini
Wednesday 10 December: VOLUNTEERS NEEDED
1, 2015
29 January
26 February
26 March
30 January
27 February
27 March
L Sergi
A Sergi
M Sergi
S Sergi
6 February
6 March
23 February
23 March
24 February
24 March
25 February
25 March
K Yardley
M Dalo
V Emery
2 February
2 March
30 March
A Barbaro
D Taylor
M Macrae
3 February
3 March
31 March
D Della Franca
J Calabria
R Torresan
4 February
4 March
1 April
B Aventi
R Carlon
N Restagno
9 February
9 March
D Salmon
K Beltrame
S Bell-Smith
K Adams-Jones
L Campbell
J Murray
10 February
10 March
11 February
11 March
12 February
12 March
13 February
13 March
S Martinello
T Barbaro
20 February
20 March
L Salvestro
P Minato
V Forner
K Salvestro
5 February
5 March
2 April
S Fanani
16 February
16 March
17 February
17 March
18 February
18 March
N Codemo
A McGibbon
A Thomas
19 February
19 March
T Feltracco
J Salvestro
K Andreatta
M Andreazza
S Trotter
A Woodhouse
M Harrison
J Davidge
S Piccoli
10 [email protected]
11 [email protected]