Term 1 Week 4 2024
‘We do whatever it takes to lead the way in Love, Learning, Faith, School Spirit, Sport & Community’
Dear families and friends,
Learning is defined as a change in Long-term memory
Explicit & Direct Teaching Instruction
We have researched far and wide to see what the most successful schools are doing to get better learning results for all their kids. They are using the Science of Cognitive Load and Learning. The Direct/Explicit approach is having a huge impact from England to Canberra and many other places in and outside of Australia. We have invested good time, including on our holidays, to research and visit some of these schools and organisations. Our student results we believe need to be better, and thus the reason for us investing good time in making some strong positive changes for our school in going forward. We will showcase this learning for parents at some stage this year once we have a very good grasp on what we are doing ourselves. This is exciting for me and our school community and I am confident that our SMP kids will improve in their learning.
2025 Kinder Enrolment Open Friday 1 March
This is the online enrolment form link that will be live from next Friday (not live now):
Existing families then click on Existing Families with a Diocese Lismore Compass username and password link, as this will already have saved data from previous enrolment.
New families click on New Families to the Diocese of Lismore.
Please use the jot form that is available to request assistance from the Diocese.
Our students will learn, understand and enact our school vision to ensure we are the best version of ourselves that we can be. I will share this information with you via Newsletter, App, Digital Sign and Facebook so you can support your child in their growth and development.
We Respect Ourselves & Others
We display the Face of Jesus in our words & actions
We have high expectations
We give good effort & persist
We display pride
We use our manners
We display effort, fairness & honesty in our play
We embrace our community and accept all
2024 School Improvement Plan
This plan has been constructed from many areas including: Student, Parent & Staff Tell Them From Me Surveys, NAPLAN, Other school assessments such as PAT, National School Improvement Tool, 2023 School Improvement Plan, Fullness of Life Framework Reflection Tools, Conversations had with families, staff and students etc.
Clear and Consistent Pedagogy
- Confident teachers delivering explicit / direct instruction.
- Consistent student growth through the delivery of explicit direct instruction
- Good honest feedback and support to each other (on the above)
- Staff to be competent and confident role models of Catholic faith
This comes from our 3 year plan for improvement below:
Assistant Principal's News - Mission
Friday Church Visits
At SMP, our students are very lucky to be so close in proximity to our parish church. Not all schools have this privilege. As a school community our students have the opportunity to celebrate a Liturgy of Word and/or Prayer Service once or twice each term in the church. We warmly invite all family members to join us with our Friday church visits during Term 1:
- 23/2 @ 1.00pm - Years 1, 2 & 3
- 8/3 @ 1.00pm - Years 4 & 5
- 22/3 @ 1.00pm - Kinder & Year 6
- 27/3 - Holy Week prayer services ~ Kinder, Years 1, 2 & 3 @ 1.00pm ~ Years 4, 5 & 6 @ 2:10pm
"Three SixTeen" Church Youth Group
One again this term, we will be running an after school youth group at the church for our Years 2-6 students that focuses on bringing kids together for fun, food and understanding about God in their lives. The program is called “Three SixTeen” and will be co-ordinated by various SMP staff members. The idea of the session is for students to have lots of fun and participate in enjoyable activities.
ThreeSixTeen will be held 2 times in Term 1 after school from 3:30pm-5:00pm (see dates below). Our teachers will collect the students after the home time bell and have some afternoon tea for the students until 3:30pm. We will then all walk to the Relihan Centre. Parents would be required to pick their child up from the Relihan Centre at 5:00pm.
If your child would like to attend the program, they must register via the link emailed out on Compass.
- Term 1 dates - Friday 8th March & Friday 22nd March (3:30pm-5pm)
Behaviour Level System
At SMP, we have very high expectations on student behaviour and place a lot of emphasis on this. With this in mind, we also do know that kids will make mistakes and require further support in this area at times. Our number 1 approach to ‘behaviour management’ in the school is through proactive strategies that make the greatest impact, most notably, building strong, supportive and trusting relationships with our students.
This year, we have introduced a new ‘Behaviour Level System’ in the school. At times, some students may find it difficult to be engaged in their learning in class or facing challenges on the playground and need further support with this. This is what our new system roughly looks like:
Assistant Principal's News Teaching & Learning
In 2024, NAPLAN will be held from Wednesday 13 March to Monday 25 March. Students in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 who are enrolled at a school are expected to participate in four NAPLAN tests:
- conventions of language (spelling, grammar and punctuation)
All schools in NSW undertake NAPLAN online. However, Year 3 students do the writing test on paper. Teachers will ensure students are familiar with the format of the tests before the NAPLAN test window.
At SMP we are holding the NAPLAN assessments on the following dates.
- Wednesday 13th March - Writing
- Thursday 14th March- Conventions of Language and Reading
- Monday 18th March- Numeracy
If your child would benefit from any learning adjustments during the NAPLAN assessments, Paula McIntyre will be in contact in the coming weeks to let you know what this will look like.
If you have any questions or concerns about the NAPLAN assessments please do not hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Student Led Conferences- SAVE THE DATE
We are holding our first Student-Led Conferences on the 8th and 9th April. More information will be sent out closer to the date, including on how to book in for these important meetings.
AP Teaching & Learning
Stage 2 Instructional Leader
Stage 2 English
This Term Years 3 and 4 have been using the Reading Mastery Transformations Programme to explicitly teach English skills. This programme has three areas of focus each day: Reading, Spelling and Language Arts. The teachers lead the programme using an online platform in each of the three areas. The lessons are sequential and build on each other each day. There lessons use the explicit, direct format where repetition, coupled with teacher modelling, shared practice and independent application are used extensiely throughout the morning to ensure students master the content being covered in the programme. Ongoing assessment is a feature of the programme with a Spelling Assessment every 5 lessons, and Reading and Language Arts being assessed every 10 lessons. Data is collected from these assessments to track student results and remedial lessons are given to students who need it to ensure they are mastering the content and skills. Students have textbooks and workbooks in each of the areas of focus. The resources are very engaging and students are already showing growth in their learning. It has been great to see the engaement on the learning tasks across all of the Year 3 and 4 classes this term. If you would like more information on these Programmes, pleaase feel free to contact me or your child's teacher.
Stage 2 Instructional Leader
Leader of Faith
Sacramental Programs at SMP
Baptised Catholic students will have the opportunity to continue their faith journey through the reception of the Sacraments of Initiation.
Year 3 - Sacrament of Confirmation - Tuesday 13 August
Year 4 - Sacrament of Reconciliation:
Reflection Night Wednesday 13 March 6.00pm - Church
Sacrament - First Reconciliation - Wednesday 20 March 6.00pm
Year 4 - Sacrament of Holy Communion - September (Date TBC)
For each sacrament, a ‘Night of Reflection’ takes place the week prior for ½ hour in our Church.
Those students involved in First Reconciliation received a note last Friday. Attached was an enrolment form to be signed and returned to the school office. Any questions, please contact Karen McDonald.
All families with students making any of the above three sacraments this year, have been especially invited by Fr Peter and our school to join us at our Family Mass on Saturday 16 March at 6.00pm.
If your family is new to SMP and you have Baptised Catholic children in Primary Classes who have for some reason, missed the opportunity to make these sacraments and you wish them to do so, please make contact with the School Office in the coming days so their names can be added.
If your child has been baptised a Catholic since their school enrolment, please know you need to bring a copy of their Baptismal Certificate to the School Office for us to update ‘child’s religion’ in our system. This will ensure their name appears on lists for the sacraments when they enter Year 3 and Year 4.
Any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact Mr Irvine or Miss McDonald.
Leader of Faith
SMP had 24 swimmers attend the Zone Swimming Carnival on Tuesday, February 13th. All swam their absolute best, with some achieving new personal best times. Congratulations to the following students for being awarded the overall champion in their age group: Lucy Hancock - Junior Girl Champion, Tom McCormack - 11 years Boy Champion. With everyone’s teamwork, support, and hard work, SMP managed to achieve second place overall at the carnival. What an achievement!
Thank you to all parents and carers who came to support the students. A special thank you to Mrs Vicki Gardner and Mrs Jo MacPherson for attending and also assisting with timekeeping on the day. We have a number of students who have qualified to attend the Diocesan Carnival in various events in the coming weeks. Congratulations to all!
A massive congratulations to Thomas McCormack, who recently participated in both the Queensland Championships and the NSW Country Championships. Tommy demonstrated exceptional performances, securing 7 Gold and 2 Silver medals. As a school community, we are immensely proud of Tom's accomplishments. This is indeed a remarkable achievement!
Zone Winter Sports Trials
We had a number of students who tried out to make the Richmond Zone teams for Netball, Rugby League, Rugby Union and Soccer. Congratulations to all for representing SMP with great pride and sportsmanship.
Cross Country Carnival
On Thursday March 7th, SMP will be holding our annual Cross Country Carnival.
Kindergarten and Year 1 will depart school at 10:30 am as their races are later in the day. Please see the course below of where the students will be running.
Congratulations to our Year 6 Colour House Captains for our 2024 Cross Country Carnival.
Thomas McCormack and Eva Crompton
Sophie Derrig and Toby Makejev
Dallas Murphy and Hudson Scully
Sonny McInnes and Sophie Leadley
Distances and approximate times for each race:
Who & How Far
Opening Ceremony (Years 2-6)
12/13yo – 3km
11yo – 3km
10yo – 2km
9yo – 2km
8yo – 2km
7yo – 1km
5/6yo – 750m
Colour House Shirts
Colour House Sports Shirts ($27.95) are now available for purchase through local retailer, Incy Wincy Kids.
Leader of Inclusion
2024 St Mary’s Primary Learning Support Team
We are very blessed at SMP to have a dedicated team to support all students to achieve their full potential. Our Learning Support Team is made up of a team of dedicated, experienced educators who are focused on supporting students.
Student Support Educators
Our Student Support Educators work in all classrooms to provide additional support for our students, especially in English & Maths.
School Speech Pathologist
Karla Carey is employed at our school every Monday and Friday. She completes assessments and monitors students. Karla also works closely with teachers and Student Support Educators to plan and implement strategies to support students with communication or literacy difficulties and works with small groups and families. Please note, that Karla is unable to offer one-on-one speech therapy support.
Learning Support Teachers
Marianne Bullpitt will teach intervention groups and support students & teachers in Kindergarten - Year 2. Paula McIntyre will teach intervention groups and support students & teachers Year 3 - Year 6. Please contact your child’s classroom teacher, Marianne & Paula if you have any questions or concerns about your child’s learning.
To support your child within the school setting it is important to provide the school office with a copy of up-to-date medical plans and additional needs assessments. It is also advisable to ask your paediatrician and medical professionals to forward all requests for assessments, suggested strategies, medical information, and reports to our school office - email@example.com
Leader of Inclusion
Happy birthday t0 Thomas Gillett Louis Neil Kianna Boyle Knox Johnston Evie Nicholls Vian Dibley Willow Benn Rhani Hollis Emily Butler Elena Vidler Paige Lawrence Asher MacMahon Felicity Doyle Chayton Dow Lyla Martin Wyatt McCormack Mia Latta Tegan Clark Axel Fright Charlie Fahey and Brianna Macdonald who have recently celebrated their birthday.