Term 1 Newsletter 2nd March - 2023
Welcome to Week 6 - School Renewal and Improvement Cycle
St Francis de Sales scheduled for our quadrennial school review will be on Monday 17 April to Thursday 20 April. The Toowoomba Catholic Schools Office has a School Renewal and Improvement Framework in place which has as a key element a quadrennial school review. In this review a review team consisting of senior staff from the Toowoomba Catholic Schools (TCS) Teaching and Learning Directorate and a peer principal from another school in the Diocese visit the school for three days.
Through a process of appreciative inquiry, review team members interview staff, parents/carers, students and community members. The questions asked are, “In your opinion, what is going well at the school?” and “What could be done better?” The purpose is for the review team to report to the school community its findings and suggested improvement strategies. These inform the process of strategic plan development and the annual action plans which are also linked to the TCS Strategic Plan. The aim is to assist schools to strategically plan to improve teaching and learning and these reviews occur in all TCS schools.
The review team would like to hear from the school community and I encourage anyone who is interested to have their say. Your feedback is important and will help us to continue to achieve the two pillars of TCS: that all students will come to personally know Jesus and that all students will achieve academic success.
Feedback can be provided to the review team in person or by telephone. All feedback remains confidential. Please contact the school office if you are interested in speaking to a reviewer. You may also register your interest by emailing Brendan.Redinger@twb.catholic.edu.au
Thank you again for your continued and on going support.
Parent Teacher Interviews in week 9/10
These interviews are most important and are designed to provide parents with the opportunity to gain a greater understanding of your child’s progress and wellbeing at school. They are also a great avenue for dialogue around achievements, areas which require some further improvement and ways parents can assist. Each teacher is required to have an interview sheet which parents are required to sign as record of the discussion. Just a reminder that if you are unavailable to attend your parent teacher interview please contact the school so another time can be arranged. I sincerely thank the teachers for their efforts in preparing and organising these interviews and to you, the parents for scheduling time for this important meeting.
Cross Country Training
It has been wonderful to see so many of our students and staff participating in the Cross Country Training in the mornings. It begins at 8:00am every morning on our school oval. Students, staff and parents are all welcome to attend. These sessions are not just for those interested in cross country running but a great way to improve fitness and train with your mates. It has been great to see the increase in numbers in attendance. Spread the word as it would be great to see even more show up for a run on the oval on these mornings. A reminder that our annual cross country carnival will be held on Thursday 8 March at 9:00am on our oval – weather depending.
Learner Qualities Survey
Please provide your feedback for our development to our learning qualities survey https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=_f1LV0RCBUK3EBaPWwxYDXWvxb3NWgJErohAXKpvaJNUQzNEMEc4S0lZNU5SNE5IWlpCSU9KUkVUQi4u
Please click on the link and submit your feedback – will only take 5 mins to complete
It is that time of year again where we urgently request for any families who may have a child eligible for Prep in 2024 to ensure an enrolment application has been submitted. Children who are born between 1/07/2018 to 30/06/2019 are eligible to enter next year’s Prep program. It is vitally important to spread the word to our community and get them to secured a place for their child for 2024.
Families should have received their first school fee invoices for the year about a week ago. Please double check your emails and if you have not received one, contact the office asap. We have several options for families to pay these fees. Please do not hesitate to contact the office to arrange internet banking, direct debit, repayment plans etc. It is vital that all families meet their financial commitment to the school. Not only is regular payment of fees a condition of enrolment, but school fees are also a major source of income. Consequently, our ability to continue to provide the best possible staffing levels and student resources relies heavily on your timely payment of school fees and levies.
Why do school fees exist?
They exist because Catholic schools, only receive 74% (Federal 58.4%; State Gov 15.6%) of the total cost associated with per student funding compared to 96.8% (76.3% State Gov; 20.5% Fed Gov) which Ed. Qld schools receive. School fees and levies exist to bridge the government funding shortfall. As you can see from the above figures, Ed. Qld schools’ main source of funding is received from the State Government while the majority of funding for Catholic Schools is sourced from the Federal Government.
Where do school fees & levies go?
As mentioned before, the fees and levies you pay are a major source of income and are directed towards additional teacher and support staff wages, classroom resourcing, capital projects, IT upgrades, building & grounds maintenance, library and curriculum resourcing and of course general operating expenses such as insurance, rates, electricity etc.
Families also need to keep in mind that the school has always strived to keep fees and levies to an absolute minimum. School fee amounts are reviewed at the end of each year and any necessary increases are discussed and agreed upon by TCS Finance support team and the Principal. When you consider the resourcing levels and amount of free of charge opportunities available for students here at St Francis, the level of fees is extremely reasonable. Of course, we do understand that from time to time, families fall on financial hardship. Our fees and levies are not designed to be a burden on any family. All we ask is that you contact the office to make an appointment to come in and discuss alternative payment options or concessions.
Changes to Calendar Events:
The list of school events are located on the school’s webpage – https://sfdssclifton.schoolzineplus.com/calendar
This is a great way of keeping up to date with upcoming events. Emails, notifications and Facebook posts will also occur throughout the year to inform and remind you of upcoming events etc. Please see the next couple of events happening very soon:-
Wed Mar 8 – SD trials for RL, Netball, Soccer
Thurs Mar 9 – School Cross Country – at St Francis
Fri Mar 10 – CD tennis trials
Wed 15 Mar – NAPLAN writing Yr3 & 5
Thurs 16 Mar – Whole school excursion to Medical Indigenous Celebrations
All week - Parent Teacher Interviews; NAPLAN assessment for Year 3 & 5
All week - Parent Teacher Interviews
Sunday 26 March – Family Sunday Mass – all are welcome to attending – 9:30am at Clifton Church
Wed 29 March Cross Country – Pilton
Thurs 30 March – Easter Holy Week Celebrations – 2:00pm – MPC
Fri 31 March – Toowoomba Show Holiday – School Closed
Term 2 – Week 1
Mon 17 April – Pupil Free Day
Tues & Wed 18/19 April – School Review
Thank you for reading and your continued support.
As it is week 6 of the term, your child is now busily working through the Term 1 learning. As a school, we are extremely proud of our St Francis students and their reading knowledge and skills! Our teachers have been completing phonemic and letter knowledge testing and reading assessments over the last two weeks. When teachers, assess, we are endeavoring to:
- monitor ongoing student progress in reading.
- identify students’ reading levels.
- identify the knowledge, skills and students use when reading unseen texts.
- assess students’ fluency when they read aloud.
- determine students’ comprehension understanding within and beyond the text.
- identify targeted needs of the students and to direct teaching and learning.
In class, we teach the students to answer various types of comprehension questions. During the up coming Parent-Teacher Interviews, your child’s teacher may discuss some of these question types with you and explain your child’s reading goals using some of these question types. So what are they and what are we asking the children to do?
- Literal - Finding information that is given directly in the text where answers can be found in a single sentence.
- Reorganisation - Reconstructing two or more literal pieces of information contained in the text either within two adjacent sentences or scattered throughout the text.
- Inference - Deducting information not given directly in the text often described as ‘simple’ inference because relevant information is not widely scattered.
- Evaluation - Gathering information and drawing inferences often described as ‘complex’ inference because the relevant information is more widely spread.
- Reaction - Expressing an opinion based on the information given in the text.
- Vocabulary - Determining the meaning of unknown words from context.
How clever are our St Francis readers to do all of that!!
PREP/YEAR 1/Year 2
Prep/Year 1/Year 2
For many of our younger students, a highlight of their week is our P/1/2 Co-operative Learning Time. In this time, students develop their language and social skills as they learn to negotiate group dynamics. This learning session, allows student to collaborate and compromise with others, recognise and respond to their own feelings and those of others. They learn to share, take turns, resolve conflicts and adhere to the rules. Below are a few photos from our Co-operative Learning session.
During Religion lessons, we have been listening, viewing and discussing the Parable of the Prodigal Son. In this story, we learnt about the importance of forgiveness and how forgiveness can help us to have positive relationships. We learnt that God’s love is unconditional and that He is willing to forgive us and welcome us with open arms.
During Science lessons, Prep and Year 1 students have enjoyed the opportunity to act like ‘real scientist’ by investigating and discussing the properties of various materials in order to create a suitable raincoat for teddy.
Year 2 have enjoyed discussions around the materials used, special features and their purpose of superhero outfits. Students were then asked to design a superhero outfit that matches design requirements.
My New Gallery
Last week we were super excited to design and create a speed car during our Science unit on forces. We used cardboard, milk bottle tops, skewers, balloons and tape to create our cars. We used contact force to thrust our cars on different surfaces. We discovered different surfaces had different amounts of friction which made our cars move faster or slower. We used non-contact force within the balloon to assist our cars in moving. This task required creative thinkers who were able to quickly solve problems.
We are studying the parable of Jesus Heals the Blind Man. We are breaking open the word in several ways- images, actions, viewing and reading. We will consider the three worlds of the text when making meaning of the parable- world behind the text, world of the text and the world in front of the text. The children loved acting out the story and taking turns in each character.
During Math we are continuing to learn about angles, area, perimeter and symmetry. We've been challenged by the extensive mathematical vocabulary associated with these concepts. We've considered the jobs that would involve these concepts and have listed- engineer, welding, farming, tiling, caprentry, building, landscaping, fencing and concreting.
Year 5/6 News
In Religion this week, we have been focusing on the question, “What is Living faith?” The students have done an excellent job explaining what faith is and as a class, we made our own definition:
Faith is believing in something you can’t necessarily prove.
From here, we will continue to explore scripture texts to determine what the text tells us about faith and belief.
We have been a hive of activity in English in the last two weeks! The students have learnt about character descriptions, building tension in their stories and the Seven Sensational Story Starters. We have used the Lion Witch and the Wardrobe for some inspiration, and below, you will be able to view some fantastic character descriptions.
In HASS, we have been learning about the rise of democracy in Australia, to understand the basis for the structure of our government. Why do we have a Prime Minister and not a President? This was one of our fabulous conversation starters.
Mr and Mrs Beaver. Written by Harvey Kuhn
Mr. Beaver was very good at singing. He's also very talented. Building lots of things. Mr. Beaver on the other hand is loving and caring. She is like a retired old lady that is creative and agile.
While Mr. Beaver is out Mrs. Beaver is cooking and she is always prepared for the worst. Even though they're small, both do big projects and they have fun.
Happily, they're both kindhearted. There is usually food on the frying pan. One thing for sure, is that they both have big striped tails.
Mr and Mrs Beaver. Written by Eve Skillington
Kind old Mrs. Beaver sat cozily in her old, tattered rocking chair. Her spectacles perched on her short nose, intrigued by her wrinkled hands, working away at her knitted masterpiece. She sat there listening to the sound of the frying pan sizzling in the background. Her old, battered tale swung as the rocking chair squeaked back and forth.
Her brown and grey fluffy hair shone as the light from the fire touched it. Her loving eyes longed for her dear Mr. Beaver to come bursting through the door at any moment. From then from inside their little home was the sound of light footsteps. She jumped out of her rocking chair and darted outside.
There standing in the distance was Mr. Beaver as cold as ice. Mrs. Beaver swung her arms around him and held him tight in her arms. As they strode back to the house the beavers grasped each other's hands. They looked at each other lovingly and shared a small kiss.
Mr and Mrs Beaver. Written by Emmett Harrigan
Mr. and Mrs. Beaver are kind and loving. They are very welcoming. Mrs Beaver is white, grey and brown and has claws and glasses.
Mr Beaver is dark grey black and white. He has very sharp claws.
The Beavers live near the White Witch’s castle.
PE with Mr Red
Over the past couple of weeks students have learnt how to use the ‘forehand and backhand’ drills in tennis, while practising for the upcoming cross country on Thursday 9 March at 9:00am on our school oval.
List of sporting successes across the last two weeks. Congratulations to the following students who have made and represented the various teams in these different sports:-
- Eve and Matilda Skillington, Mick Willet, Chole Stace and Rhys Gascoyne
- Mick Willett and Rhys Gascoyne
- Eve Skillington and Katherine James – both made it for Southern Downs (SD)
CD Rugby League
- Archie Joppich, Thomas Patterson, Mick Willett, Bryce Bateman – all made it through to SD
- Eve Skillington, Archie Joppich, Mick Willett, Thomas Patterson, Natalie Patterson, Matilda Skillington, Rhys Gascoyne, Charlotte Trimingham, Joseph Ramsey
(All the best for your up coming trials)
Yours in sport
P & F UNIFORM SHOP
Uniform Shop Co-Ordinator: Kylie Hay
Contact Details: firstname.lastname@example.org or 0487 582 107
Uniform Shop Days: MOST Thursdays & Fridays
If you would like uniforms, please fill in the updated Invoice Sheet and email or text Kylie to either arrange a time to meet or for the order to be sent home with your child. If you have an old invoice copy, please bin it and replace with our updated one. This can be found on the Facebook Page or request one from me directly.
UNIFORM SHOP NEWS
- We now have EFTPOS available in the Uniform Shop at the time of collection
- We have some good quality second hand winter uniforms and also summer uniforms available for $5 per item if you’re looking for an extra jumper, shirt, shorts etc. Please note that only limited sizes and items are available but you are welcome to request second hand if available.
- We are no longer stocking the following items however we still have limited stock available for a discounted price if you would still like to purchase them.
- Green Fleece Vest $10
- Sizes 4,6,8,12 & 14 available
- Long Sleeve Boys Polo Shirts $15
- Sizes 4,10,12,14 & Small available
- Girls Green Long Formal Pants $10
- All sizes except 10 available
- Girls Green Long Sports Pants $15
- Sizes 4,6,8,10 & 16 available
- Green Fleece Vest $10
If you urgently require uniforms on a day other than Thursday or Friday, please let me know and I can arrange this with the staff at St Francis De Sales. Please note I do work and will get back to as soon as I possibly can.
STUDENT PROTECTION CONTACTS
Feeling Safe- All students have a right to feel safe and be safe.
If you are concerned about any form of abuse that is immediate, you should call 000. A significant risk or harm to a student, whether or not you have formed this belief on reasonable ground, should immediately be raised with one of our Student Protection Contacts.
We do recommend the setting-up of a direct debit facility to pay regular amounts into the school account. This alleviates overdue bills.
SCHOOL Bank Details
Reminder: All P&F payments & Uniform payments are paid to a different bank account NOT the school account.
P&F Bank Details