Kotara South Public School Newsletter

24 February 2021 | Week 5 | Term 1

From the Principal

Welcome to week 5 of term. Can you believe that today is half way through term 1 ! Can hardly believe it myself. The term has started very smoothly and students have been very engaged in high quality learning and. Our Instructional Leaders, Learning and Support Coordinator, Intervention teachers and School Learning Support Officers have been super busy putting in place support programs and working with students and staff to ensure that these interventions programs are differentiated to meet the needs of each and every student in our school.  Our support staff pride themselves in knowing our students and what they need in their learning. 

Last week we held our Meet the Teacher time zoom sessions. There were questions across each stage zoom around homework. I would like to address homework as a whole school item. Our students at KSPS have a very diverse and full life outside of school. Most of our students have a diverse range of commitments outside of school that takes not only their time, but parents as well. The short time between school hours, dinner and bedtime is already full. We therefore ask parents not to look for formalised homework each week. Instead, we ask you to read with or to your child each afternoon or evening. Regular and consistent reading habits developed overtime dramatically improve reading abilities. Below are a few starting points for reading at home:

1.      ensure the book that is chosen is a topic that your child understands and can make connections with and they perhaps make the book choice.

2.      Children get to hear how an adult fluently reads aloud

3.      You are both able to discuss the book / what is read after you have finished reading for the day. Perhaps discussing the character or the setting helps your child to understand a little deeper the connections in the story.

4.      Make the time enjoyable and a time to connect, even if it’s only for 5-10 mins, it forms a positive habit.

Today students from KSPS will be attending the Newcastle City Zone swimming carnival at Lambton pool. We wish all our students the best of luck and we know you will do your best. A big thank you to the KSPS Team Teacher Mrs Bird and to the Newcastle City Zone PSSA President Mr John who make these events possible.

This Friday, Scripture/Ethics lessons start up again for the year. These lessons are delivered by accredited volunteer external providers and  will take place Friday morning at 9am for approx.30mins per week. Parents have a choice to have their child in either Scripture (generic religious based instruction), Ethics, (ethical instruction using scenarios) or non-scripture (neither). Students in years 1 -6 will remain in their identified classes from 2020, unless a parent sends in a note to change classes. Notes have gone out to Kinder parents and new students to the school, asking what class they would prefer their child in. Please ensure that you return this note ASAP to have your child placed into the preferred class. Please know that there are class limits of 22 for Ethics. There is a waiting list and this is filled by the Ethics coordinator. Both Scripture and Ethics are looking for volunteers to teach lessons each week. If you can assist, please contact the school and we will put you in touch with the either of the coordinators.

During the week there has been some classroom maintenance in 3/4C and 3/4M. Thank you to the students and their teachers for the flexibility in the spaces that they have been working in over the last few days whilst this takes place. Everything should be back to normal by Friday.

Recently, we have had some parents request permission for external agencies to be working with students in school time. Please contact Mrs Fear- our Learning and Support Coordinator for further information regarding this process. This is an individual case-by-case decision based around the educational merits for each child and the best meeting the operational needs of the school and minimal disruption to the student and the class teacher.

Next Wednesday 3 March, our Year 6 Ministers are hosting their first fundraising event for the year. This is a Crazy sock day. Please see details from the Ministers further on in this newsletter.

All public school are currently undergoing the writing of the new School Improvement Plan for a four year cycle. Next week the school executive will be consolidating our situational analysis and sharing that with our Director of Educational Leadership. KSPS is also scheduled for the process of External Validation on 19 May. These two whole school processes will form the basis of our direction in the coming years.

A reminder that the Premier's Reading Challenge opens for students on the 1st of March. Here is the link to register. PRC website-home. More information next newsletter.

Our amazing P & C are back at it, working hard to raise funds for our school. Please support our P & C who support us. Keep these dates handy so you can support us.  Events coming up for the P & C are:  Bunnings BBQ on 21 March, Athletics carnival 26 March, Easter raffle 1 April. Please lend a helping hand where you can

A HUGE thank you to all those parents and carers who have already paid their voluntary contributions this year. A whopping 50% of our families have paid in 48 hours of receiving their invoices. These funds go directly to providing all manner of items for your child at school. Those families who pay their Voluntary Contribution fees before the end of term will go into the $100 draw for a VISA gift card.

Be safe, look after yourselves and make the moments matter



Mrs Maxworthy


Instructional Leader News

This term I have been working closely with all K-2 classes in my role as Instructional Leader.  This involves working in each classroom for two sessions every week.  During this time I am working closely with the K-2 teachers to develop and implement quality teaching and learning in English – especially reading and writing. 

In 1/2E we are using the text Macca the Alpaca to model quality literature.  Through this text, Mr Eldridge and I are working with students to develop their comprehension skills by developing their understanding of what ‘good readers do when they read’.  We are also using this text to model the structure of narrative writing.  Students are analysing the characters and setting of the text and using this to develop their own character profiles.  They are also identifying the beginning, middle and end of the book so that they can construct cohesive narrative texts independently.  Mr Eldridge and I team teach as well as work with small groups to model and guide the writing process.

Catherine Ward – Instructional Leader/K-2 Assistant Principal 

Counsellor Corner

The way you talk to yourself can really impact your confidence. The effect can be good or bad depending on whether your self-talk is positive or negative.

What is self-talk?

Self-talk is basically your inner voice, the voice in your mind that says the things you don’t necessarily say out loud. We often don’t even realise that this running commentary is going on in the background, but our self-talk can have a big influence on how we feel about who we are.

The difference between positive and negative self-talk

Positive self-talk makes you feel good about yourself and the things that are going on in your life. It’s like having an optimistic voice in your head that always looks on the bright side.

Examples: ‘I am doing the best I can’, ‘I can totally make it through this exam’, ‘I don’t feel great right now, but things could be worse’

Negative self-talk makes you feel pretty crappy about yourself and the things that are going on. It can put a downer on anything, even something good.

Examples: ‘I should be doing better’, ‘Everyone thinks I’m an idiot’, ‘Everything’s crap’, ‘Nothing’s ever going to get better.’

Negative self-talk tends to make people pretty miserable and can even impact on their recovery from mental health difficulties. But it’s not possible, or helpful, to be positive all the time, either. So, how can you make your self-talk work for you?

Why should I practise?

The more you work on improving your self-talk, the easier you’ll find it. It’s kind of like practising an instrument or going to sports training: it won’t be easy to start with, but you’ll get better with time.

It might not seem like much, but self-talk is a huge part of our self-esteem and confidence. By working on replacing negative self-talk with more positive self-talk, you’re more likely to feel in control of stuff that’s going on in your life and to achieve your goals.

[Source: https://au.reachout.com/articles/3-ways-to-talk-yourself-up]


Crazy Sock Day

On Wednesday 3rd March week 6, the whole school will holding a year 6 fundraiser. On this day, all students and staff are asked to take part in a CRAZY SOCK day.  For this event, please bring in a gold coin donation and wear your normal school uniform. Students must also remember to wear their black school shoes on this day. This occasion hopes to bring a fun and inclusive experience to all, so get involved and wear your CRAZY SOCKS.

Years 6 Welfare Ministers

Phoebe Thiem and Leila Donnelly  

Good for kids - Summer Fun

Assembly Awards

Week 3 and 4


Louis Summerville
Marcus Bruton
Adelaide Wills
Mia Herkentrup-Albring
Arden McCurley
Annabelle Walsh

Cooper Mason
Ruby O'Brien
Scarlett Migus
Charlie Robinson
Saxon Tyrie
Natalie Henderson


Zahli Hac
Eloise Postol
Xanthe Vickerman
Conor Tynan
Beau Simpson
Luca Bridges


Daniel West-Sooby

Niamh McKinney
Nina Thomson
Isaac Smith
Jessica Kelly
Jesse Rabbitt


Maddie Stormon
Eli Parsons
Jamie Henderson
Edison Hornby-Howell
Xan Dwyer
Georgia Menzies


Bryce Gundry
William Harris
Layne Alexander
Lily O'Brien
Kodah Wicks (Goldsmith)
Charlotte Burton


Zander Peters
Lia Sheldon
Imogen Moran
Cooper Hill
Maverick Wood
Maya O'Brien


Archie Wilson
Joseph Kyle-Whitson
Ryley Hayes
Haylee Kokkin
Sonny Hulsman
Phoebe Thiem


Xavier Spencer
Gretta Horscroft-Smith
Jasper Roberts
Finn Askew
Jordyn Cutbush
Isla O'Brien


Paige Cutro
Caden Densham
Abby Kearns
Steffen Herkentrup-Albring
Jakson Simpson
Elin Zentiner


Arabella Willmott
Gabriela Vyslysel
Annie Kocon
Rio Cristaudo
Matilda Page
Sebastian Castagna


Phoebe cannon
Liam Sharpe
Luciana Gentle Torres
Chase Hain
Mathew Zerndt
Lucas O'Connor


Toby Sneddon
Emily Furner
Levi Rigby
Austin Wood
Bobby McKee
Sarah Andresen
Ivy Owens
Finn O'Brien
Joe Forrester
Jada Capriotti
Blake Mitchison
Ava Russell

Upcoming Events

Keep track of school events by signing up for notifications on the Skoolbag app. ‘What’s On’ reminders are posted each Sunday evening. Or, please check the Events page of the KSPS Website for upcoming dates and details.

Contact information

Kotara South Public School provides a supportive learning community where students are valued and encouraged to reach their full potential.

Strive to Achieve

P&C Association

The Annual General Meeting – not as scary as it sounds!

The KSPS P&C Annual General Meeting (or AGM) is held each year in March; this year it will be on Wednesday 10 March at 6.30pm, followed by a regular meeting at 7pm. During the meeting, all positions are declared vacant and the executive team for 2021 is voted in. The President and Treasurer also present reports summarising our activities for the previous year. We’d love to encourage all members, new and old, to attend the AGM and stay for the regular meeting afterwards. Please don’t stay away because you don’t want to be voted in! The majority of positions already have nominations submitted, and no-one will be asked to do something that they don’t want to do. If no-one is nominated for a position, it will remain vacant.

If you would like to nominate yourself or someone else for a position (President, Vice President x 2, Treasurer, Secretary, Events coordinator, Uniform Shop coordinator), please email the P&C for a nomination form. Please note that you need to be a paid-up member of the P&C to nominate someone, hold a position or vote at P&C meetings, so please join (or rejoin) the P&C if you haven’t already done so by purchasing a $2 membership via the Uniform Shop online store.

Do you want to make a real difference? Join our Executive team for 2020

While we have people who have already nominated for several of the P&C’s executive positions, we are on the lookout for someone to join our friendly and supportive team.

Events coordinator: This position has been called Fundraising coordinator but it’s probably more accurate to describe it as an event management position. If you love organising people and events then this is the role for you! We need someone to oversee the overall fundraising calendar for the year, make sure we continue to have people in place to coordinate each event, and to keep track of our overall profits to make sure we are able to hit our fundraising targets. If you have some ideas for other events we can add to our repertoire, even better!

If you are interested in this position or have any questions about the role, please get in touch via the P&C email.


The BEST school canteen managed by the fantastic Mrs Fiona Best is open five days a week, but this can only happen with the help of volunteers. Your support is greatly appreciated, whether it is once a year, once a month or every week.

You can find the online roster here: Online Canteen Roster. Mrs Best is still in need of helpers to fill out the roster for this term. Each shift is from school drop off (around 8.30-8.50am) until approximately midday. Fiona will send you home with a delicious lunch as a thank you for your assistance. Please note that no children are allowed in the canteen while you are helping. Thank you so much for supporting the BEST canteen!

If you haven’t already done so, why not try ordering your child’s lunch with our Qkr! phone app. It’s easy to set up and use. Instructions can be found on the school website here.

Uniform Shop

Our uniform shop co-ordinator, Stephanie Dooley, fills uniform shop orders on Tuesday mornings between 8.30am and 9am. Please order and pay using our online store: https://kotara-south-public-school-pc-association.square.site/. Orders received before 8.30am on Tuesday will go home with your child that day [please note orders are delayed this week due to illness, but will come home later in the week]. It is important to include your child’s name and class in the “Notes to Seller” part of the online checkout so we can send the orders to your child’s class to take home with them.

In-person visits to the uniform shop are available by appointment only. Please email the P&C or the uniform shop (kspsuniforms@gmail.com) if you need to make an appointment.

Bunnings BBQ – Sunday 21 march

Our first fundraiser for the year is a Bunnings BBQ at the Kotara store on Sunday 21 March. We will need volunteers to help cook and serve between 8.30am and 4.00pm. If you are able to help please fill out the online sign up form.

Easter Raffle coming soon

We are so happy to be holding an Easter Raffle again this year, with the raffle drawn on Thursday 1 April (last day of term). We will be asking for donations of chocolate Easter eggs, baskets or other Easter themed products soon. Tickets will be sold a little differently this year – we are going online! Please look out for more information in our next newsletter and on Skoolbag and Facebook.