Thank you to all parents and carers who were able to attend our recent parent-teacher interviews; we had an extremely positive level of participation across the school and this is a great reflection of family engagement with your child’s learning. All staff are committed to working in partnership with you and I encourage you to contact your child’s class teacher throughout the year if the need arises.
Recently I attended the annual Department For Education's school and pre-school leaders conference. Education Minister John Gardner and Chief Executive Rick Persse addressed the group and both spoke about the Department’s key aspirations for public education. These aspirations focused on all students becoming confident and creative individuals who become active contributors to society and are able to find a pathway for a successful life. Both speakers commented on the growth that has been achieved within the state’s public education system in relation to various measures (PAT assessments, Phonics Screening, Wellbeing and Engagement) along with higher rates of SACE completion in secondary schools. The efforts of all educators in navigating through the challenges presented by COVID-19 in 2020 was also acknowledged.
As this is our final newsletter for the term I would like to thank all students and staff for their efforts throughout the term. Staff have worked very hard to set the foundations for a productive year; ensuring classrooms are focused on learning and that expectations have been set that reflect our school values. Well done to our students also, it is always enjoyable to visit classrooms and observe them engaging in their learning and to talk about their class work. I would also like to thank the support provided by families which is evident in many ways and we look forward to your ongoing help throughout the remainder of the year.
Tomorrow is our Sports Day which will be an exciting day for everyone! Please take the time to read the reminders below.
· The day will commence at 9am and conclude at 2.00pm (Governing Council have approved an early dismissal for the Easter break).
· Due to COVID-19 guidelines a boundary rope will surround the oval area where students will be participating in events (this is shown in the Sports Day booklet). Visitors will be expected to stay behind the rope. Efforts will be made so that parents/carers will be able to view their child/ren’s events however we need to ensure physical distancing requirements are being met (adults are expected to maintain 1.5 metres between themselves and other adults and children other than their own). Our Sports Day does not require the presence of COVID marshals so we request all spectators to support the success of the event by being mindful of this expectation.
· Please note there will be some events in the gym therefore only students and staff will be allowed in this area. We will be interested to see how the roped off areas go as this may be a practice that is maintained in future years (some safety concerns have been raised in the past about young children and visitors encroaching upon events creating the risk of an accident/injury occurring).
· Visitors are required to use the QR sign in as they enter the school grounds and physical distance.
· Students are to go to their class after the first morning bell so that the roll can be taken.
· The day will commence at 9am on the sprints track where students will meet in their teams prior to starting their first event.
· The canteen will be available for children only on the day. Students are encouraged to bring a water bottle, recess and lunch if needed. A coffee van will be on site for all visitors.
Mobile Phone and Personal Device Policy
The Department for Education has recently confirmed its policy regarding student use of mobile phones and personal devices. Under the department’s policy, primary aged students are not permitted to access their mobile phones and personal devices during the school day (unless they have an approved exemption as outlined in the policy). Along with this expectation, we have been required to develop a school policy to further describe the management of this area. A copy of the policy has been provided in this week’s newsletter and is also available on the school’s website. We thank parents and carers in advance for your support with the expectations outlined in the policy. If you have any queries or require any clarification, please contact the school.
School Zone Safety Pilot Project
Our school has been contacted by the Charles Sturt Council to participate in a School Zone Safety Pilot Project, which is a collaboration between the Council, the University of Adelaide and SAGE Automation.
Within school zones, South Australia has the rule of a lowered speed limit of 25km/h 'when children present', requiring drivers to slow at any time of the day when children may be in the streets adjacent to school, including irregular events such as early dismissal and after-hours extra-curricular activities.
The School Zone Safety Pilot Project will assist motorists to identify whether children are present within our school zone through the application of ‘smart technology’. The technology aims to assist drivers to identify when pedestrians are within the school zone and raise driver self-awareness about the speed they travel in the zone through the following process:
· Heat sensing bollards detect the presence of pedestrians within the school zone;
· Radars detect the approaching speed of motorists;
· An illuminated sign panel directs drivers to “CHECK SPEED” should the system detect a pedestrian within the zone and should a driver approach the school zone at a speed exceeding 25km/h.
The school zone in Military Road (adjacent our school near the OSHC and Performing Arts building) has been identified as the location for this technology. Governing Council have endorsed this project and it is expected that the infrastructure will be installed during the April school holidays.
COVID-19 Update: QR Codes
The Department for Education has indicated that it is no longer necessary for parents and carers to check-in at the school gate to enter school grounds, however, it is a requirement when entering classrooms or buildings within the school (we are also required to use the QR sign in for events such as Sports Day). For people without smart phones, this can be done via a hand written record that will be available in the Front Office.
Please be aware that all visitors must continue to sign in at the Front Office as a part of our normal processes.
As mentioned in our previous newsletter our year 3, 5 and 7 students will be participating in NAPLAN assessments in Term 2 (the testing window is from Tuesday May 11 – Friday May 21). Whilst we encourage all students to participate in NAPLAN there are options for families who do not want their child to participate. This can be done through seeking either an exemption or withdrawal. Please speak to your child’s teacher before the end of term if this is something that you want to discuss further.
In the mornings, prior to the first bell, we request that only Rec-Yr 2 students play in this area. Students are not to play near the entrance doors of the junior primary building.
After school riding of bikes and scooters in the school grounds
As there are many people, including staff, still moving around the school after dismissal time we request that students do not use this equipment until 3.30pm.
These expectations have been established to support a safe environment and we thank you in advance for your support with these matters.