NEWSLETTER 31 - 27th September 2022
“This is your life, joys and sorrows mingled, one succeeding the other.” Although written 200 years ago, this quote by the founder of the Sisters of Mercy, Catherine McAuley, resonates clearly and with truth today as it did 200 years ago and I thought it appropriate for this, my final report as principal of a school founded by the Mercy Sisters. Mercy values of Respect, Hospitality, Mercy and Compassion are as universal as they are ageless; it is not until we are in the depths of our sorrows or at the heights of any exaltations that we come to appreciate the importance and impact of these four Mercy values appreciating that these values are not assigned solely to the Sisters of Mercy, but are found in all the world’s major religions because they represent the love of God that is expressed in the varied faith traditions. Catherine McAuley experienced significant opposition to her desire to do what she considered God’s work in displaying mercy to the poor – her life that acted as an inspiration to others, was certainly a life of joys and sorrows. I believe she would have agreed with the American poet Ralph Waldo Emerson when he said, “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honourable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”
The importance of ‘values of service’ that we ascribe to as compass points for our relationships with others is intrinsic to who we are of people of character and it is hopefully inculcated to our students. We are in many ways curators of our own life story, relying on our perception of reality, which is anchored to our memories, to provide us with what we assume to be a broad and deep repository of knowledge, understandings and skills that equip us with life’s engagements. Our beliefs become the foundation for our actions and behaviours and form the core of who we believe we are and, subsequently, what we believe we can do in the world. Our Visible Learning project has as one of its goals students taking a significant degree of responsibility for their learning. As people who promote the virtues of being intrinsically caring, compassionate individuals, we are sometimes challenged by others who have a contrary perspective of our self-belief. As I have become older (and unfortunately not necessarily wiser) I have come to accept that I need to ask myself three questions prior to responding to those who challenge my ‘self-belief’:
- What is it that I find most challenging about the other person’s behaviour or attitude?
- Do I present with the same or similar behaviours or attitudes – how do they view me?
- How should the answers to the above questions frame my response?
Friedrich Nietzsche, the 19th century German philosopher stated that, “All things are subject to interpretation; whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth.” Our attitudes, our consciously held beliefs or opinions, lead to behaviours that, through repetition can become quite fixed and automatic - we often fail to self-reflect and we are all prone to accept the ‘truth’ of our memories and thoughts, accepting them as facts, which we come to believe, correct or not, as how we define ourselves and others. There is significant research that highlights that, whilst we ‘are’ our memories, there is a danger in underestimating the fallibility of these memories; the acceptance of thoughts, opinions and memories as facts, which leads to a distortion of the truth. This is a phenomenon that affects us all and it is one reason why I am often asking myself the three questions that I mentioned above. I hope that all in our school community continue to offer each other support of the Mercy values, however, I hope, too, that we are willing to engage in challenging what we consider to be unsubstantiated self-belief in others in a respectful manner with the realisation that we, too, need to be prepared to have our self-belief critiqued.
Julia Shaw, a Canadian scientist, focuses her studies on implanted memories and she highlights how each time we tell a story, we change our memory; we can internalise a thought or opinion into a memory that convinces ourselves that it is fact. One of our goals as educators is to assist each person to form healthy attitudes and to have confidence in any application in life. To enable integrity in this life-long undertaking, research in attitudes and beliefs compels us to be honest curators of our life, which may challenge our current perception of ourselves and others. We expect our students to be open to new information, understandings and skills in the nexus between such endeavours and the formation of not only knowledge, but character; we, too, as adults should engage in this process that has at is heart the notion of humility in that we accept that we are one part of a varied and quite complex community - humility does not mean you think less of yourself; it means you think of yourself less. In every person’s life, in every person’s day, there are examples of people who live humble lives - acting out of a ‘common good’ and often not gaining recognition or favour. However, through their actions, they are living out the Golden Rule of treating others as they would like to be treated, always with respect. Communicating through words and deeds is the finest form of communication.
As I engage in the quite mad busyness of a typical end of term workload, I remain profoundly grateful for all the ‘sorrows and joys’ that have been associated with the role and in all humility I align my no doubt expected sadness in no longer being part of St Patrick’s specifically, and education generally, by reflecting on the aspirational words of the American poet and wit, Ralph Waldo Emerson, who stated, “To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.”
Rod Linhart (Principal)
Term 1 - Thursday 3rd February - Thursday 14th April
Term 2 - Monday 2nd May - *Friday 8th July
Term 3 - Monday 25th July - Friday 30th September
Term 4 - Monday 17th October - Thursday 15th December
*Student Free Day Friday 8th July 2022
Final Day Term 3
Casual Clothes Day - Gold Coin Donation
No Inquiring Minds
First Day Term 4 - Summer Uniform
Assembly - School Captain Nomination
|Friday 21st||Inquiring Minds - 9.00 - 10.30am|
|Monday 24th||Assembly - School Captains Announced|
|Tuesday 25th||Year 6 Camp - Hobart (Depart)|
|Wednesday 26th||Year 6 Camp - Hobart|
|Thursday 27th||Year 6 Camp - Hobart|
Inquiring Minds - 9.00 - 10.30am
Year 6 Camp - Hobart (Return)
We have a number of staff currently on leave and we are grateful for the support of our relief staff who have enabled continuity of programming. Yesterday members of the school community received an announcement regarding principalship of St Patrick’s from the beginning of the 2023 school year. Carmen Aylott, who is currently the principal of St Joseph’s Queenstown and Rosebery, is looking forward to joining the St Patrick’s School community as principal beginning at the start of the 2023 school year and she hopes to make a short visit tomorrow on her way through to a Catholic Education Tasmania pilgrimage to Italy commencing this Thursday. We are looking forward to welcoming and supporting Carmen with her transition to the role at St Patrick’s next year.
Our final day for term 3 is this Friday 30th September – we wish everyone a safe and happy holiday and a reminder to ring the school number over the holidays should you have an urgent or important question regarding school. Term 4 begins on Monday 17th October with students expected to be wearing full summer uniform please - no hat, no play.
During term 4 Mr Atkins will assume the role and responsibilities of Acting-Principal. It is proposed that he will be well supported by Mrs Badcock and Mrs Marshall who will assume some of his Deputy-Principal responsibilities. It is proposed Mrs Lockyer will continue to teach three days in Year 2, allowing Mrs Fenton to teach two days in Year 2 and to also assume a two-day Student Support role, allowing Mrs Marshall an opportunity to have more time to support her shared acting Deputy-Principal role. It is proposed that Ms Zeleznik will also be at school on Tuesdays and Wednesdays undertaking tasks such as library supervision and some in-class support that was the responsibilities of the school leadership team in previous terms, thus freeing them to be of support for staff welfare and student outcomes.
On Friday Students from Years 5 and 6 had the opportunity to travel to Our Lady of Mercy school in Deloraine to take part in activities in celebration of Mercy Day.The Year5’s and 6’s, under the lead of Mrs Murray and OLM teachers, had created a day filled with activities to encourage us to see the awe of God through Science, gain more understanding of Catherine McCauley and the Sisters of Mercy as well as shining a spotlight on showing and growing our MJR values. Many students took the opportunity to meet and make new friends. We thank everyone involved for creating such a wonderful experience and look forward to hosting Our Lady of Mercy at St Patrick’s next year for Mercy Day.
In Year Six this term we have been learning about Earth’s place in Space and developing our understanding of the solar system in which we live. We started with a trip to The Hive at the beginning of the term and then undertook research into the way our solar system works as well as diving deeper into understanding more about the different planets that are part of our solar system. At school students have created reports on the solar system and researched and answered their own inquiry question about space. They have created their own incredible websites to showcase all their information. Over the past few weeks they have also been busy at home creating amazing 3D models of the solar system to complement their websites. Early next term we look forward to presenting our models and websites to the school and to our Year Six parents. Until then, enjoy some pictures of the 3D models currently in the Year Six classroom.
On Friday, 9th September, Year 3 attended an excursion to the Hive, Ulverstone. We were able to explore the artwork of Sophie Underwood’s “Boukla” exhibition. We examined the displays of the past in the Museum and participated in the Science Centre’s activities. Following this, we viewed the “Sun” program in the Planetarium. Students enjoyed pizza for lunch and then we travelled to Sacred Heart School for a play in their school playground. On our way home, we stopped at Lillico Beach to explore and have a walk together.
Congratulations to our four basketball teams for their outstanding efforts over the weekend. Our Years 5/6 B Division Girls won their final, our Years 5/6 C Division Girls won their final, our Years 3/4 B Division Boys got through to the grand final and lost narrowly by three points, and our Years 3/4 C Division Girls only lost their final by 1 point! Thank you to Mrs Meech and Mrs Harris for the time and effort involved in registering the teams and organising team kits, our wonderful coaches and managers (Dean Hingston & Mel Atkins, Kelly Mundy & Leah Lewis, Sarah O’Neill & Megan Meech, Georgie Tueon & Anita Tueon) and to all family spectators.
The School Captains and SRC members have organised a casual clothes day for this Friday 30th (last day of term) Please bring a gold coin donation as part of the fundraising for the Year 6 camp to Hobart next term.
Students enjoyed wearing their sport’s team ‘colours’ last Friday 23rd September (Wednesday 21st September if a kinder student). As usual, we commenced the day with an AFL team song assembly and children enjoyed a free hot dog and ice-cream courtesy of the school P & F and slightly longer lunch-time play.
Congratulations to the following students who have received Student of the Week.
Prep: Jaydah Blackwell for sounding out words, writing words and reading words. Well done for your hard work, you are experiencing success.
Year 1: Advika Anand For the great effort with your procedure on how to make a mask. Great work Advika.
Year 2: Darcy Wrankmore for improved application and attitude in his written work. A great achievement Darcy.
Year 3: Alexander Fawkner for his excellent attitude and application towards extending his skills in all areas.
Year 4: Ruby Warren for her positive attitude and consistent application to all learning tasks during Term 3. Well done Ruby.
Year 5: Zarna Bakes for her positive approach to learning tasks.
Year 6: Sasha Tucker for her positive attitude and welcoming spirit during our Mercy celebrations at Deloraine that allowed her to form new friendships.
Congratulations to our House Raffle winners this week:
Dooley - Jacob Hingston Martyn - Liam Becker
Byrne - Oliver Singline
St Patrick’s and Mersey Leven
Thank you to Mrs Stoessiger, Mrs Klug and Mrs Sutton who prepared the children beautifully for Mass with Fr Damien in the School Hall. Fr Damien congratulated the children on their participation and prayer during the Mass. The children have been growing seeds for the Mass and Fr Damien spoke about the children growing big and
strong just like the plants with prayer and doing good deeds for our parents and our friends.
A big thank you to Fr Damien for his enormous effort
since his arrival in April, his dedication and passion
for the Mass and for education is exceptional.
The 2022 Tasmanian School Triathlon Challenge forms went home with all students in Years 3-6 last week and is included as a downloadable form with this newsletter. The event will be held at the Mersey Bluff on Thursday 24th November. If your child/ren would like to compete in this event please return the entry forms back to the school office by no later than this Friday 30th September. Students can choose to participate as an individual or in a team. The registration fee will be covered by the school. This year we will bus our students to and from the event; however, it will be parent responsibility to get pushbikes to the Mersey Bluff by the allocated cut-off time in the morning and to collect them after the event. Further detailed information will be forwarded to families closer to the event.
Congratulations for the following students who received very pleasing results in the 2022 Tasmanian Japanese Speech Contest.
Grade 3 - Avril Lewis (Participation)
Grade 4 - Zita Omogbai-Musa (2nd Place)
Grade 5 - Zara Omogbai-Musa (Participation)
Our uniform policy does not require students to wear hats until summer uniform (the transition of which will begin in two weeks), however, advice from the Cancer Council strongly encourages the wearing of hats and being ‘Sun Smart’ in other ways once the UV rating reaches 3. This level 3 UV rating is now appearing to occur regularly with our clear, sunny spring days and we will be encouraging staff and students to wear hats in response to this sound advice from the Cancer Council.
Winter-Summer uniform transition may commence next week, with the expectations that students commence school on the first day of term 4 in full summer uniform. The school Uniform Policy is included with this week’s newsletter and is in the school diary for regular reference. With the UV rating regularly being 3 lately, we support students wearing hats during the final weeks of term 3
Thank you to Mrs Anthony and the many school staff who assisted in the collection and distribution of the annual P & F pie sale. The School P & F raised $2390.50 what an awesome effort thank you to everyone who contributed to this fundraiser.
The school urges parents to support road safety by obeying signage or staff on duty requests. And asks you remind your child(ren) to be very aware of potential traffic related dangers around the school. Sometimes for example, pedestrians or motorists take short cuts, and if students are crossing inappropriately (with or without you), or just not aware of their surrounds by always looking either way, we could have an accident. The education and care of our students is a partnership between the staff and parents and we all need to play our part, even if only to demonstrate your support to any children watching.
Unfortunately, we have had some incidences after school regarding behaviours occurring on school grounds when students are in the care of their parents that we would deem inappropriate during school hours. We acknowledge that a quick ‘catch-up’ amongst parents after school can offer the only face-to-face opportunities for parent get-togethers, however, in the light of these incidences, parents are requested to take their child or children home promptly after school please, unless their child or children are involved in a school event, such as sporting coaching, is taking place. Thank you for your cooperation and support.
Karlie offers discrete counselling services to students upon both parent's signed request. Request forms are available from the school office or can be downloaded from the school website.
Whole school assemblies have commenced again each morning – parents are welcome; please follow the COVID Safety Plan protocols – sanitize and observe personal distancing.
Please continue to follow Health advice regarding notifying us if your child contracts COVID-19. Some important considerations regarding the updated COVID-19 School Safety Plan include:
- Parents are welcome inside school buildings without masks – please sanitise upon entry and wear a mask if you are a close contact (as per Health instructions.)
- Positive cases are still required to isolate for at least 7 days.
- Close contacts are still required to follow close contact rules for 7 days including testing daily if leaving their home and wearing a mask (all persons 12 years and older) in indoor settings when outside their home.
- There is no need to sign-in at the school office unless you are collecting or dropping off your child outside the usual drop-off/pick-up times (always come to the school office and office staff will contact the class teacher please, rather than picking your child directly from the classroom.)
Colds and flu
- Students/staff with cold or flu symptoms are required to stay home and test for two consecutive days.
- If the person has twice tested negative on successive days for COVID-19 and their symptoms are mild e.g. a runny nose, there is no coughing or sneezing and, if a student they have indicated when asked that they feel well, then the person is permitted at school /workplace.
Rapid antigen tests
Schools and the TCEO will allocate rapid antigen tests to CET personnel (staff and students only) as per the following schedule:
- Provide one (1) test when requested due to the person being symptomatic.
- Provide five (5) tests when requested due to the person having household close contact status.
- If staff or students have symptoms, they should stay home and test for COVID-19.
- If it is less than 28 days since they had COVID-19, they do not need to get tested but should
still stay at home if unwell.
- If the test is positive and the person has not had a COVID-19 infection within 28 days, the person is considered a confirmed case.
- If the initial test result is negative and symptoms continue, students and staff with ongoing symptoms are advised to take a second test the following day.
- If the second test remains negative, this is sufficient to enable a return to work or school.
- If a person has returned 2 successive negative rapid antigen tests and still feels unwell consider
taking a PCR test.
- Positive rapid antigen tests must be registered on the Tasmanian Government COVID-19 website by the confirmed case or their parent/carer.
Should a student or member of staff test positive for COVID-19 they must:
- Isolate for a minimum of 7 days, provided outside the 28-day reinfection exclusion period.
- Isolate for a further 3 days if they still have symptoms on day 7.
- If test positive using a rapid antigen test, register the result with Public Health using their online declaration form or phone the Public Health Hotline 1800 671 738.
- Notify household close contacts of the need to observe close contact requirements when leaving their homes.
Parents are welcome to contact Mr Linhart at any time to discuss issues relating to their child’s education. It is important for parents to always make contact with Mr Linhart or their child’s teacher if they require elaboration or clarification on any issue. The school phone is diverted to after hours to ensure your question should be answered.
Our school community is special in many ways - dedicated staff, supportive parents, and cooperative students. Our Mercy Charism provides us with key values that, I believe, are real ingredients for our uniqueness - Compassion, Hospitality, Respect and Mercy. We try hard to live out these values and one way of displaying compassion is for us to be a support to those in our school community who have undergone a loss.
‘Inquiring Minds’ Birth to 5 program - a ‘Set-Up for Success’ Catholic Education Tasmania initiative.
Our ‘Inquiring Minds’ birth to 5 program operates each Friday during school term time from 9.00am to 10.30am;This program involves a considerable focus on communicating to parents the learning intentions of important activities that are associated with early years learning. Mrs Klug will be working to engage parents in early years learning experiences that will ensure children who are enrolling in Kindergarten, will be informed in regards to developing key social, emotional, physical and cognitive skills and understandings.