Michael Gray, Principal
Dear Parents, Guardians, Students, Staff and our wider School Community
With beautiful weather forecast for Monday, I look forward to our students enjoying our wonderful grounds.
The facility was certainly enhanced and improved with much work completed over the summer break. Thanks to all staff from St. Joseph’s involved; especially Cathy Duynhoven (Business Manager) Andrew Miles, Sharyn O’Bray and Nigel Gray (Facility Staff), David Carlin (Builder), many contractors and a team of University students working during their break to clean, wash and tidy all our learning areas.
A further highlight of the works completed was the donation of time and materials by a past staff member (Mr Bernie Dunn) who constructed the interactive playground school car. This car is designed to support occupational therapy with moving parts for all younger students to build their co-ordination in a fun way. Toddlers visiting our school are also welcome to use this equipment. Our playground works also include a strong maintenance regime to ensure safety and good working order.
The school grounds works are funded via our school fees and this year included two funding partners; the Warrnambool City Council (web address https://www.warrnambool.vic.gov.au/) with the Bromfield Road crossing, pathway and new bridge; along with Midfield Meats International (web address https://midfield.com.au/) supporting our specialised school playground improvements to the value of $10,000.
Key Works Completed during the summer break included:
- Final school fencing completion and the car park of tennis court area cleaned.
- New footbridge over Russell Creek
- Access to Bromfield Road Children’s Crossing
- Long Jump & Triple Jump pit installed
- New Allen Oval seating
- New garden beds
- Playground equipment
- Disability access ramp
- Cleaning repairs and general maintenance and the
- Installation of two new learning areas.
The highlight of all this work was the installation of 26 new interactive televisions. These units connect to our school technology system to ensure access to high-end ICT support to classroom learning. I especially thank Pat Allen and Tom Beks; along with the school facilities team for the great installation work. These units replace old electronic whiteboards and allow full interactivity, clear vision and outstanding sound. The beauty of this work was a new screen for every classroom ready to go for the first school day.
Child Safety: 1) General Health and Wellbeing: Coronavirus.
To support public health and help share community information I can provide the following information about the virus. I note that our focus with our students is discussion of the importance of personal hygiene, especially at school of washing hands after using the bathrooms, staying at home if unwell, coughing or sneezing into a handkerchief; or if not the elbow area of your arm.
The Australian government has advised that people at most risk of serious infection are:
- Those with compromised immune systems
- Elderly people
- Young children and babies
- People with diagnosed heart and lung conditions
- Aboriginal and Torres-Strait Islanders
Preventative measures to consider now are:
- Follow DFAT travel advice for overseas travel
- Review travel plans to avoid having people near places where the virus has spread.
- Stay informed about the virus. Refer to the Australian Department of Health for updated information and advice on mitigating risks or treating suspected symptoms of novel coronavirus
- Encourage the practise of good hygiene for coughing and sneezing, and washing hands
- See a doctor if you feel unwell or have a fever
- Reinforce the importance of following any new protocol or processes supporting public health.
As recommended by the Australian Government Department of Health, visit the homepage at www.health.gov.au Any questions call the Public Health Information Line on 1800 004 599 or contact your state or territory Public Health Authority, in Victoria, this is • VIC call 1300 651 160. Australia’s health authorities are taking an active and precautionary response to protect citizens at home and abroad, and monitoring developments closely.
Of note St. Joseph’s Primary School and our local Catholic Network Schools also have a partnership program with Doshisha Elementary School in Kyoto, Japan. Students and families exchange and visit each other annually. With the virus a world health concern we will review, from a pro-active risk assessment perspective these programs.
Safety: 2) Historical Sex Abuse Article, For Your Information
The following information is provided regarding an Age newspaper weekend electronic edition and the Warrnambool Standard (Possible Publication). For parent and staff information; an ex-Christian brother, Rex Francis Elmer, pleaded guilty to sex offences in the Warrnambool area and various other Catholic institutions. In the Age story the reporter mentioned a St. Joseph's school, I believe this was one of the original schools started by the Christian Brothers in Warrnambool.
In 1935 our current St. Joseph’s Parish Primary School was started at the old Lava Street site, now Koala Childcare. Our St Joseph’s Parish Primary School was then re-located to the Botanic Road site here in Warrnambool and opened in 1986.
At the time of the charges against Brother Elmer, he was at the Christian Brothers College which did have a boys primary school section. In 1981 the Christian Brothers ceased providing primary education. From my understanding, when the junior section of CBC was closed some of the boys transferred to local Catholic parish primary schools. The early sponsors and founders of our St. Joseph's Parish Primary School were lay parishioners, various parish priests and the Sisters of Mercy. The principals in the early days of St. Joseph’s Parish Primary School were Sisters of Mercy and in our latter year’s laypeople.
With the above said St. Joseph’s Parish Primary School continues to vigorously support sex abuse disclosure and will support all victims of any abuse. We acknowledge the monumental betrayal of trust these events cause and that truth is important to on-going support and help. Our current procedures, policies, culture and action support and build a child-safe community. St. Joseph’s Parish Primary School is both a nurturing and happy environment for all and we are ready to support whoever needs our help.
The full article Age article can be found at:
Support in this area is available via Victorian Help Lines which are accessible on 24 hours a day. The Victoria Police information Sheets can be found on
Safety: 3) Mandatory Reporting to child protection in Victoria
Department of Health and Human Services have a site where Mandatory Reporting information is available. Further, recently Beth Allen, Acting Director Children and Families Policy Branch Children and Families Division wrote to all Victorian Catholic Schools announcing a change in Victorian legislation under the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 in September 2019. The act now states that a ‘person in religious ministry’ will become a mandatory reporter to Child Protection without any exemptions for religious confessions from the 17th February 2020. The definition of a person in religious ministry is a person appointed, ordained or otherwise recognised as a religious or spiritual leader of a religious institution. A religious institution is an entity that operates under the auspices of any faith and provides activities, facilities, programs or services.
Michael Gray, Principal
3:30pm - 5:30pm, Monday 17th February
3:30pm - 6:00pm, Tuesday 18th February
3:30pm - 5:30pm, Wednesday 19th February (Room D1 and D5)
Formal Parent Teacher Interviews are conducted twice yearly in Terms 1 and 2.
The first Parent Teacher interviews are held early in Term 1 to allow parents to formally meet their child’s classroom teacher, discuss their child’s needs and to allow the teacher to gain information pertinent to the student having a successful year of learning.
The second Parent Teacher interviews are late in Term 2 to allow the parents and teachers to discuss students’ mid year formal written reports.
Bookings are made via PAM and are now open.
New email address
Well, what a busy first three weeks of term in the way of all things Sport. Tennis, Swimming, Athletics, new notice boards and administration procedures! We are both learning a lot and having fun at the same time. We have just set up a new email address to try and make it easier for students, parents and staff to access the best information regarding sport and physical education at St Joseph’s. If you have any questions about upcoming events, team results or Schools Sport Victoria guidelines then please send emails to email@example.com
Last Friday saw over 60 students from Years 3 - 6 have a go at making it past the set qualifying times for this year’s Division Swimming Championships. We would like to express our sincere thanks to the group of parents who were able to help us out on the day to ensure the trials ran smoothly. All results will be posted on the Sports Notice Board in the Hall foyer this week. The Division Swimming Championships takes place on Friday 13th March 2020.
Tennis Team Training Times
Reminder to all named tennis players for the District Team are required to bring their racquets for training today Monday 17th February and Monday 24th February before the competition to be held on Friday 28th February.
Middle/Senior School Sports - Requesting Parent Helpers!
Monday 2nd March, 2020 is the date for this year’s Senior School Sports (years 3-6), held here at St Joseph’s Primary School on the Allen Oval. This event cannot operate without volunteers from our school community. If you think that you might be able to spare a couple of hours to support us at one of the stations, then please complete the form below as this will enable us to create a more organised schedule of events for the day.
Emily Lloyd, Sports Co-ordinator
Senior Reconciliation is a Sacramental Program for Grade 6 students who have completed their Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist Sacraments.
Please complete this form and make $20 payment through CDFpay (our online ordering system).
At least one parent is required to attend the Parent Information meeting at the church.
Contact Leanne at the Parish on 5562 2231 with any queries.
Friday 21st February 2020 - Registration and payment closes
7:30pm, Tuesday 25th February 2020 - Parent information meeting
5:30pm, Tuesday 24th March 2019 - Sacrament of Reconciliation
In our school comminuty we have some students and staff that have a variety of specific diagnosed medical conditions.
Please find attached some information in regards to Anaphylaxis awareness in our school. Take some time to read over this information.
Other medical conditions that are within our school community are Epilepsy, Vision Impairment, Ataxic Cerebral Palsy and Diabeties. All students, staff and families manage these conditions extremley well and are able to participate actively in school programs and events. Sometimes community support is needed. Further information on the various conditions noted above from The Royal Children's Hospital website is linked below.
Thank you to all our families for sending along their children all ready for school photos. The day ran very smoothly and we have received positive feedback in regards to the earlier start time for family photos.
There is a photo catchup day on Tuesday 18th February for any student who was absent on the day or did not have their photo taken on the day for various reasons.
If you have any queries regarding your order please contact Glen Watson Photography either by email or phone. The school does not have any details of any orders.
As many children are bringing icy poles for celebrating birthdays we are requesting that on the day if any icypoles are left over that these be please taken home. We are having many additional icy poles left over and storage in our freezer is limited. Many thanks.
For the purpose of an individual child’s celebration or birthday a lemonade icy pole or Zooper Dooper are a recommended option for these occasions. It is not compulsory to celebrate all birthdays through the classroom.
Icy poles can be placed by the parent directly into the freezer in canteen. Please label with child's name and room number and let the classroom teacher know. Average classroom numbers are Foundation (22), Year 1 (19), Years 2 (24) Years 3/4 (25) and Year 5 (23) and Year 6 (23).
Term 1 Canteen Roster
Copies of our Term 1 Roster were sent home earlier in the week.
We rely on our volunteers and are also in need of more parents to assist. Training is arranged by our Canteen Co-ordinator Tania Hughes. Please consider volunteering, even if only once per term, all help most appreciated.