to download our 2015 School Handbook (pdf)

St. Joseph’s School
Constitution Hill Road, SORRENTO 3943
Phone: (03) 5984 1291 Fax: (03) 5984 3230
Dear Parents
On behalf of our staff and students, I warmly welcome you and your family to St Joseph’s
School and trust the experiences ahead will be rewarding.
We recognise that parents are the primary educators of their children and welcome their
involvement and participation in the educational programs at school.
We ask that you read this booklet carefully and keep it as a reference so that you are familiar with the operation of our school and are able to support and encourage us in the education of your child. Any changes to policy or procedures outlined in this handbook will be
advised through the school newsletter.
Yours sincerely,
Gavin Brennan
Principal: Mr. Gavin Brennan
Deputy Principal: Patrika Rowley
Secretary: Mrs. Lucy O’Brien
School Address: Constitution Hill Road, Sorrento, 3943
Telephone: 5984-1291
Facsimile: 5984-3230
Office Hours: 8.30am – 4:00pm
page 2
page 3—5
page 6
School Prayer
page 7
page 8
Vision Statement
page 9
The Transition Process
page 10
Physical Aspects
page 11—12
Social Aspects
page 13
Emotional Aspects
page 13—14
Intellectual Aspects
page 15
Between now and the start of school
page 16
First Day
page 17
Saying Goodbye
page 17
First Week
page 17
Weekly dates for first term
page 18
Who is going to play with my child?
page 19
When can I speak to the teacher?
page 19
Going to and from school
page 19
Library requirements and procedures
page 20
Art/Craft/Painting requirements
page 20
The Early Years
page 21
Religious Education
page 22
page 23—24
page 25
Integrated Curriculum
page 26
The Arts
page 26
Languages Other Than English
page 26
page 26
Physical Education
page 27
page 28
page 29
page 29
Active After School Communities
page 29
page 29
page 29
page 30
Book Club
page 30
page 30
page 30
Car park
page 30—31
Change of Address
page 31
Court Orders
page 31
Curriculum Days
page 31
Discipline Policy
page 32
page 32
Early Collection of children from school
page 32
Emergency Information
page 32
page 32
page 33
Fitzgerald Shield
page 33
Grouping of Classes
page 33
Health Exclusion Table
page 33
Head Lice
page 34
House Teams
page 34
Immunisation Certificate
page 34
page 34
page 35
Lost Property
page 35
page 35
page 35
page 35
Mobile Phones
page 35
page 36
Parent Involvement
page 36
Parents for Parents
page 36
Parents and Friends
page 36
Parent/Teacher Meetings
page 36
page 36
Reporting Student Progress
page 37
Return of Notes
page 37
Sacramental Program
page 37
School Bank
page 37
School Commencement Time
page 37
School Fees
page 37
School Hours
page 38
School Nurse
page 38
Secondary Education
page 38
Sign In/Sign Out Register
page 38
page 38
Staff Meetings
page 38
Student Birthdays
page 39
Student Well-Being
page 39
Student Requisites
page 39
page 39
page 39
Term Dates and Public Holidays
page 40
Thomas Hayes Award
page 40
Treasured Possessions
page 40
page 40
page 41
Visitor’s Pass
page 42
Wet Day Procedure
page 42
Working With Children
page 42
If you have any problems or concerns over the Christmas
holidays and January, the following mothers have indicated that
they can be contacted. Both these ladies had children in
grade prep during 2014
Jodie Carroll—0422 566 839
Tanya Williamson—5988 8038 or 0403 919 834
Heavenly Father,
You have called us to be the community of St. Joseph’s.
Please bless the children of our school and help us to work hard,
to co-operate with and show respect for one another.
Guide and strengthen our teachers, so that they
may lead the children gently and with care.
For the blessing of our families, we say thank you
and ask you to keep them safe.
St. Joseph’s School at Sorrento has served the needs of the southern peninsula since 1932.
In those early days, attendance at the school was less than 50, with a staff of two nuns. Now
there are around 190 children attending our school. Over the past year, the interior of the
school has been modernised to provide a modern, flexible learning environment for the children to receive a Christian-based contemporary education.
Lay principals have been leading the school since 1984 after 51 years of the school being
served by the Sisters of Mercy. In 2010, Mr Gavin Brennan was appointed to the position of
principal at our school. Our Parish Priest is Fr. Kevin Davine OMI. Fr. Davine is Parish Priest
of St Mary’s Star of the Sea Church and responsible for St Joseph’s Parish school.
The school is situated in the township of Sorrento on the Mornington Peninsula, surrounded
by national parks and beautiful beaches. A peaceful and calm atmosphere is reflected in the
environment of the school which is welcoming to all.
The school provides a private bus service which runs from Truemans Road, Tootgarook to
Sorrento. The school has an open door policy and encourages all to visit our school to meet
the principal and to see our school in action. The school is part of the parish of St Mary’s
Star of the Sea, Sorrento. There are nine class groups housed in three flexible learning
spaces and 2 classrooms. There is also a Library and Art room. Programs offered include
Reading Recovery, Physical Education and L.O.T.E. (Italian). The school shares its grounds
with the church and the faith life of the children is of prime importance in the school. St Joseph's also shares ownership of a swimming pool that enables the school to offer a comprehensive swimming program at no cost to the families, and with minimum disruption to the
All curriculum areas within the school were aligned with the AusVELS and currently includes
all the domains across Discipline Based Learning, Interdisciplinary Learning and the Physical, Personal and Social Learning.
Children have access to the latest technology through interactive whiteboards and computers in all classrooms and a computer lab. We have also added a bank of IPads and will look
to move towards a 1:1 mobile device program in the very near future. St. Joseph’s School
believes in equal access to education for all.
We believe that our school has much to offer by being a small family oriented community.
We promote a welcoming atmosphere to all families and are committed to working with parents to bring about the best educational outcomes for our children.
As a vibrant Catholic learning community, we will develop engaged,
independent and successful learners who will contribute to the world
for the good of all!
To provide a rigorous and contemporary Catholic education that integrates faith, life, culture and social and emotional wellbeing.
An understanding that each person is created in the image of God and
called to communion with Him, underpins our values at St. Joseph’s.
Team Work
The commencement of primary school is an important event in the life of every child.
The school’s transition process in the year prior to the children starting school includes the
arrangements are made to have a number of contact people
available to parents over the summer holidays;
a general information evening is held for the parents;
a staff member contacts the kindergartens that children
are currently attending;
three orientation mornings are organised for the children;
three information sessions are held for parents during
orientation mornings.
Children who are coping with their own personal needs such as eating, toileting, nose blowing, dressing and asking for assistance when necessary, will feel more confident at school.
Children need to be well enough to enjoy school.
Starting school is a tiring experience, even for a healthy child. A regular bedtime routine is
needed. Even with daylight savings a Prep child should be in bed at a reasonably early hour.
Allow at least half an hour between last T.V program and lights out to allow time for your
child to settle. Take a few minutes each night for a story or a cuddle and chat before lights
This is the ability to direct the hand with the eye.
It is very important for such things as writing, cutting, drawing, ball games.
Skills such as handling books, holding pens and pencils, pouring, cutting and playing ball
games will be developed and improved at school. Nevertheless, experience with these types
of activities before commencing school can make things easier. Encourage children to pour
water into containers, stack containers inside each other, draw with pencils, crayons, chalk,
build with construction kits; throw and catch balls, hit balls with bats.
At school, your child will frequently use the skills of walking, running, jumping, hopping and
skipping. These skills can be developed and refined by your child having the opportunity to
play freely outdoors. Discourage sitting too much in front of the television.
As jumpers and shoes are often removed during a school day, you should encourage your
child to dress himself/herself. However, many 5 years olds find it nearly impossible to tie
shoelaces. Buckles and Velcro alleviate this problem, but perseverance in teaching your
child to tie laces will achieve great results and give immense satisfaction.
Here is a suggested sequence to help your child tie shoe laces:
Knot the lace
Loop it
Wrap it round
Poke it through
Pull it tight
Have “practice school lunches” at home. Let children get used to containers you have
bought before bringing them to school, unwrap glad wrap, unscrew and screw drink lids,
peel a piece of fruit and get a drink from the tap.
Teach children when and how to use a handkerchief or tissue and make sure they are in the
habit of taking one to school.
Children will need to:
go to the toilet by themselves and undo and do up any buttons or zips.
flush the toilet
wash hands
The Prep teachers program allows regular toilet visits during the first weeks of school.
However, “accidents” occasionally happen. Alert the teacher to any particular needs your
child may have. Spare clothing is kept at school, but if you expect any problems with your
child, you could consider sending spare underclothes in your child’s schoolbag
School is not a place, it is PEOPLE. Parents can help prepare children for school by encouraging them to share toys, take turns during games, help with household chores and by allowing them to mix with other children and adults outside the family.
Children often work or play in groups at school, and this means they will need to take turns,
share materials and co-operate with others. They need to listen to what other children have
to say and realise that they are not the only ones seeking help and attention.
Children more easily adapt to school life if they can:
listen to the teachers and others
follow rules
make needs and requests known
take turns
At school, children will have to cope with their feelings in a variety of situations, e.g., when
parents leave them, when they find tasks difficult, when they are not getting attention.
(Adults are not as readily available at school as at home). They need to understand that
adults must set limits, be able to interact with other children and adults and deal with
conflict between individuals.
When parents tell a child they are going to leave but will be back, and keep their promise,
the child learns to accept separation. Parents who are cheerful and encouraging about the
things the child will do at school ease the parting. Don’t make children feel guilty after they
describe their great day at school by saying, “Didn’t you miss me?”
A child who knows he/she is loved and accepted at home will cope with the strangeness of
school. Security is also developed when parents set limits on the child’s behaviour, explain
why and make sure these limits are kept. e.g.
Bed time is 7.00 p.m.
No snacks before tea
No one expects small children to control their emotions like adults, but children who have
temper tantrums if they do not get their own way are often rejected by other children. Selfcontrol is developed at home when
parents do not give in to temper tantrums.
the child is asked to wait while the parents finish what they are doing.
parents don’t give children everything they ask for.
Confident children see themselves as being successful. Encouragement to tackle tasks of
gradually increasing difficulty, and praise for the attempt as well as for success increases
the child’s confidence. It is also a good idea to display his/her creation or work.
In the school each activity has to be tidied away before another can be started. Children
who don’t do their share are seen as a nuisance and unfair. A sense of responsibility is developed at home when parents encourage children to keep their rooms tidy, put toys away
and always finish one task or game before beginning another.
School provides a marvellous range of activities for children. Those who can choose an activity and occupy themselves will attempt more and probably learn more. Each time parents
allow children to tackle something for themselves they are encouraging the growth of independence.
Encourage your child to complete tasks. When the task becomes difficult give a little assistance and ask guiding questions to help them see the next step, then let them complete the
task. Children come to see the value of keeping on trying.
Be consistent.
Never threaten punishment you do not intend to carry out.
Try to be more positive than negative about your child’s behaviour.
Children delight in developing knowledge and understanding by seeing, hearing, touching,
tasting, smelling and doing. Many everyday activities offer important learning for children:
playing games, going on outings, building with materials, going shopping, cooking, playing
with sand and water, counting, following instructions, listening to and telling stories, reading books and drawing and writing together.
By offering your child a range of rich experiences such as these, talking about what he or
she is doing, and answering and asking questions in your home language, you are helping
your child to develop both language and an understanding of their environment.
The intellectual emphasis during the first years of school is on the development of reading
and numeracy skills. There is a strong emphasis on the development of oral language.
You can assist by:
Reading to and with your child.
Discussing pictures and having your child predict what they think the story will be
Help your child develop concepts of more, less, bigger, smaller, how many?
Teach your child to be independent with his/her own belongings and toys. It will
greatly help if he/she can recognise his/her name, his/her own coat and school requisites. Please label any clothes that may be taken off. We strongly advise embroidered
name tags, as they do not fade. Also clearly label lunch boxes and school bags.
Visit the school. Point out the different buildings and playground areas. Once school
starts, make sure your child knows that you will meet him/her at the collection area
(the veggie garden).
Plan a daily routine so that your child gets ample rest, without an afternoon sleep.
(A much earlier bed-time is often needed during the first year at school.)
Ensure that your child is able to manage clothing and use the toilet without assistance.
Make a point of chatting with your child and encourage him/her to sit quietly and
Establish a pick-up and drop-off plan, check work times, work towards a calm and orderly pace of being up, dressed, fed, organised and ready to leave the house for a
timely arrival at school. If this routine is mastered before the first day of school, your
child will not need to deal with the stress of a new morning routine.
Food: Give your child practice in eating a packed lunch at home.
Be sure your child has a balance breakfast before coming to school.
Lunches should be restricted in size, please. Some children are required to
eat too much.
No glass bottles for children’s drinks.
Aluminium foil is easier to unwrap than “glad wrap”.
Pack a healthy lunch and snack.
Show your child what food you have packed each morning and say what
food is for play time and what is for lunch time.
Make sure your child can easily open their lunch box and drink container.
Encourage your child to bring home any food they don’t eat
Please help us to reduce the amount of plastic wrap and other items of plastic that we put
into our bins. On Wednesdays we have a “NUDE FOOD” Day. We try not to bring any plastic
or plastic containers that have to be thrown out.
On your child's very first day at school, walk your child to the classroom. Take a photo if
you wish, say a cheerful, short good-bye and then allow the teacher to assist the child in the
classroom. If you are concerned about your child, please drive away and call the office at
your earliest convenience to check on your child's progress. If there is an adjustment period, it is usually very short. The staffroom will be available on the first day if you wish to stay
and have a cuppa at school for a while and chat or cry with other parents.
Short good-byes and a positive, non-worried manner convey to the child an unspoken
message that you know he/she is being left in a safe place you picked out just for them.
Parents set the pace for a child's success at school. Encourage your child to join in an activity with other children in the classroom. A short, cheerful good-bye from you can help
your child feel there is nothing to be concerned about. By the end of term one children
should be coming into the classroom by themselves and organising their bag, reader, etc.
- Thursday 29th January - Friday, 30th January 2015
All children start on the same day, Thursday 29th January 2015
Prep children to arrive at 9:00 a.m. and will finish at 1 p.m.
Only play lunch (little play) and drinks need to be brought to school by prep
children this week.
Play lunch could consist of a snack, a piece of fruit and a drink.
Please do not expect children to eat too much, especially considering the hot
Don’t forget your child’s school hat.
Monday 2nd February - Thursday 5th February.
Monday 9th February - Thursday 12th February.
Monday 16th February - Thursday 19th February.
Monday 23rd February - Thursday 26th February.
Children arrive at 9:00 a.m. and will finish at 3:30 p.m.
FOR PREP CHILDREN. No class on Fridays in February - 6th, 13th, 20th and
27th February. On these days we will be holding interviews with our prep
students and their parents. Initially, we are running a modified program in the
afternoon sessions. If you feel your child would benefit from going home early do
not hesitate to collect your child from the classroom.
During February, on days of extreme heat, please feel free to collect your
child at any time after the morning session. If it is necessary to collect your
child other than at the normal time of dismissal, you need to inform your
child’s teacher. We have a sign in/sign out register in the office for late
arrivals and early departures.
Children will need to bring both playlunch and lunch.
The school day is from 9.00 a.m. till 3.30 p.m.
All Children attend on every day of the week.
Monday 2nd March - Friday 6th March
Tuesday 10th March - Friday 13th March
Monday 16th March - Friday 20th March
Monday 23rd March - Friday 27th March
Monday 9th March is the Labour Day public holiday.
First term ends on Friday 27th March at 1.00pm.
You can be assured that your child will have friends on the playground. Parents are often
concerned about their children during recess and lunch break. You can feel confident that
your children are well supervised, and that the teachers ensure that no child is left without
friends on the playground.
Your child’s teacher is very happy for you to speak to her/him about your child, when
she/he is free to do so. Developing the habit of communication is very important. A whole
range of minor issues can be dealt with through an informal word with your child’s teacher
after school. However, if you have any particular concern that may require more lengthy
discussion, please make an appointment with the teacher at a mutually convenient time.
After the first few weeks a pattern of going to and from school will have been established.
Please let the class teacher know what the normal arrangements are, and whether there are
any alternative arrangements - such as being collected by other adults. Please ensure that
your child knows if the normal arrangements are to change. Arrive in plenty of time to collect your child and call the school if you are going to be late. For the first year you will
meet your child and their teacher at the veggie garden after school.
Child to have “Safeway” size material library bag to transport
books to and from school on library day. Library Bags can be
ordered from the student requisites list.
The Library bag should be clearly marked with your child’s
name and grade.
Each week children are to return their library books on their
library day.
Smock - preferably large enough to allow ease of movement; clearly labelled
with your child’s name.
It is recommended that the smock has elastic at sleeve ends and around neck.
Smocks to be left at school and cleaned at home, should the need arise.
Smocks can be ordered from the student requisites list.
St. Joseph’s School has a proud record of providing a balanced and sequential curriculum
for all students. Along with all other schools in Victoria, we use the Victorian Essential
Learning Standards (AusVels) to plan our curriculum.
AusVels outlines what is important for students to learn and develop during their time at
school. The Standards are designed to encourage a deep understanding of essential
knowledge, skills and behaviour. The teachers use AusVels to plan student learning, assess
students’ progress and report to parents. Students will continue to develop knowledge and
understanding in the traditional subject areas of Religion, English, Mathematics, Science,
the Humanities, Languages, Health and Physical Education and the Arts. The new approach
links traditional subject areas more closely to other important areas of learning such as the
development of physical, personal and social skills.
In the early years (Prep – Year 4), the emphasis is on establishing literacy and numeracy
skills and understandings, giving children the confidence to learn and to participate in everyday life. The early years classroom is an exciting and stimulating place where your child
will be challenged and supported during a range of activities. Time each day will be devoted to literacy and numeracy. As part of the whole class your child will read books, learn
about writing stories and solve mathematical problems with the teacher.
At other times he or she will spend time working in small groups on special literacy and
numeracy tasks with the teacher or independently with other children. Classrooms are
child-friendly places with colorful displays of children’s work, learning materials and books,
computers, construction materials and art supplies – all of which children find inviting and
St. Joseph’s School is the primary school of St. Mary’s, Star of the Sea, Parish.
The school and the parish respect, encourage and support parents in their role as first educators of their children in faith.
Our Religious Education program is fundamentally concerned with the Good News of Jesus
Christ. The basic aims of Religious Education are to develop an awareness of, an understanding of, a response to and a celebration of the life of God the Father, Jesus Christ, the
Holy Spirit, the Church and the wider world. The sources of Religious Education are the expression of God’s revelation in Scripture, Tradition, Liturgy and Life.
Each child has a copy of the text “To Know, Worship and Love.”
Our R.E. program is planned and implemented using the “Coming To Know, Worship and
Love” program with its series of textbooks and teachers’ companions.
In Year 3, the children receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation and in Year 4, they receive
the Sacrament of Eucharist. Every alternate year the Year 5 and 6 children receive the Sacrament of Confirmation.
Classroom masses, whole school masses and prayer are core components of the program.
Our English program aims to develop in students the ability to speak, listen, read, view and write
with confidence, purpose and enjoyment.
The English key learning area is organised into three stands, which are the same for all levels:
* Speaking and Listening
* Reading
* Writing
Our literacy program incorporates a range of instructional strategies to provide for the diverse
needs of all students. The teachers plan a variety of strategies every day during the reading and
writing blocks. Each instructional strategy provides a different level of teacher support and provides unique opportunities to support students as they develop into engaged, responsive and
reflective readers, writers, listeners and speakers. The structures in which the students operate
provide varying degrees of independence and responsibility.
When planning a teaching session the teacher selects the most appropriate instructional strategy with guidance from the relevant data kept for each student.
Reading Recovery is a short-term early intervention program, focusing on students who, after
one year of schooling and despite good first teaching, are not developing effective reading and
writing processes. Reading Recovery is arguably the most consistently documented and successful early literacy intervention program currently available. It is also an accelerative program
and as such is unique among intervention programs.
Within the Speaking and Learning component, some of the skills the students will master include the ability to: *
recount personal experiences in sequence
retell the main events of a story
repeat a message
listen to stories, thoughts, ideas and the views of others.
develop a feeling for the rhythm and movement of words through poems,
rhymes, jingles and songs.
Within the Writing component we encourage children to master skills which include:-
making natural scribble patterns
engaging in writing-like behaviour such as scribbling in lines, making letter shapes,
writing their own name, copying words
writing letters of the alphabet correctly
reading or inventing a message based on their own
distinguishing between writing and drawing
writing from left to right, top to bottom
Within the Reading component, the skills students will master include the ability to:
listen to a story read aloud
hold the book the right way up, turn the pages
distinguish between print and picture
display an interest in books, pictures and stories
talk in a story-telling voice
respond to a story e.g., laughter, anger
From the very beginning, children learn through modelling, that reading is pleasurable and
By learning mathematics in school, students acquire some of the skills and knowledge that
they need to deal confidently and competently with daily life. Learning mathematics involves
mastering several components: knowing mathematical facts (such as the multiplication tables),
being able to carry out mathematical procedures (such as adding numbers or drawing a graph)
and being able to use mathematics in solving problems.
For prep students, there are four strands:
* Space
* Number
* Measurement, Chance and Data
*Working Mathematically.
Some of the skills that students acquire in their first year at school are the ability to:
identify simple patterns
continue a pattern
use informal measurements of length, capacity and volume
sort materials
estimate and compare size/shape
identify sameness and difference
touch count
(1 - 20)
(1 - 20)
count out
(1 - 20)
count how many
count forward/backwards
use zero to label an empty group
use appropriate mathematical vocabulary
St. Joseph’s is involved with the ‘enVision’ program; a topic driven teaching and learning program aligned with the Australian curriculum to ensure that children are successful learners in
this important area of the curriculum.
We use an integrated approach to learning and teaching for the content areas of the Curriculum Science, The Humanities ( History, Geography and Economics), Health and Civics and Citizenship.
This integrated approach emphasises the common elements of knowledge, skills (thinking and social), values and attitudes. Integrated units of work, based around topics of relevance and interest
to students, are a vehicle for providing meaningful, connected, learning contexts. Each term one of
the four domains of Science, The Humanities, Health or Civics and Citizenship is the major focus of
the students’ work. Units are planned on a two-year cycle.
The Arts are incorporated into the teaching of the integrated curriculum. Students use art, dance,
drama, media, and music to respond to, sort out, organise, demonstrate and make meaning of the
experiences we provide in our study of Science, The Humanities, Health and Technology.
The students attend a weekly 1 hour art lesson with our specialist art teacher.
Some aspects of The Arts are also included in other areas of the curriculum. For example, dance is
one of the elements that is taught in the physical education program.
At St. Joseph’s, children learn Italian.
The study of a Language Other Than English (LOTE) has become increasingly important as Australia
has become a culturally diverse society. It develops communication skills and knowledge and helps
the children come to understand social, historical, familial relationships and other aspects of the
language and culture of the speakers of the language they are studying.
In their lessons, student are involved in listening, speaking, viewing, reading and writing activities.
At St Joseph’s children have the opportunity to learn guitar or piano during school hours. They also
have the opportunity to be part of the school choir and participate in assembly items and concerts;
e.g. the end of year Christmas concert.
A well-developed Physical Education program is not only essential for the physical development of your child but is crucially important in providing a link with all other areas of the
curriculum. For example, skills such as throwing, hitting and catching a ball can lead to your
child developing the hand-eye co-ordination skills needed to perform other activities in the
curriculum. It also provides improved social confidence during playtimes.
Physical Education aims to develop a range of physical skills, movement patterns and coordinated actions in all students. Students are given the opportunity to use these skills in
play, games, dance, gymnastics, sports, outdoor activities and recreation.
We have a specialist Physical Education teacher at St. Joseph’s.
We provide an introduction to the F.M.S. (Fundamental Motor Skills) program which aims to
develop specific skills used in playground games and in sports and ensures improved participation in such activities. At the Prep level, these skills are incorporated into the Phys. Ed.
lessons, with growing emphasis and time allotted to these skills in Grades 1 and 2.
In term 4 we provide swimming lessons as part of the Physical Education program.
The school teaches a handwriting style called Victorian Modern Cursive.
This style is recommended for all primary schools. It was developed after extensive consultation with practicing teachers and in response to requests for greater consistency, legibility
and fluency of handwriting.
Your child’s name should be written with a capital letter at the beginning of the name then
small letters. (Please not all capitals)
The regular attendance of children is expected. In case of sickness, keep your child at home and call
the doctor if necessary. Report absences the day the child is sick, before 9:30 a.m., and send a note
to the teacher when the child returns to school. (Absences notes are available from the school office). If your child gets sick at school, you’ll be contacted. It is important that the school has an
emergency number to ring if you cannot be reached. The school should be informed of changes to
emergency contact numbers, home or work phone numbers immediately.
Minor accidents are dealt with by teachers. Any accidents requiring medical attention will be
brought to the immediate attention of the parents. If parents cannot be contacted the school will
need to contact a relative or friend who can assist. In the event of an emergency, the principal will
take responsibility for permission for medical treatment. All children who receive treatment in the
sickbay are provided with a parent information slip. This will include the nature of the injury and the
treatment provided.
Children can participate in structured physical activity and sport after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays through the Active After School Communities program. Activities run between 3.45pm and
4.45pm at St. Joseph’s. Booking forms are published in the school newsletter at the beginning of
each term. There is no cost for children to participate in the program.
Anaphylaxis is a severe and sudden allergic reaction when a person is exposed to an allergen. The
most common allergens in school-aged children are eggs, peanuts, tree nuts (e.g. cashews), cow's
milk, fish and shellfish, wheat, soy, certain insect stings and medications. If your child has been diagnosed as being at risk of anaphylaxis, you should inform the school as early as possible of any foods
or items your child is allergic to and provide the school with an Anaphylaxis Management Plan. You
must also supply your child’s EpiPen® and replace it when it reaches the expiry date. School staff
regularly undertake training in recognising and responding appropriately to an anaphylactic reaction, including EpiPen® training.
The children assemble each week to share events of interest, notable achievements and pray. Classes
are rostered for a presentation.
These assemblies are held on Monday afternoons in the Church Hall from 3.00pm to provide a
means of regular contact between classes and with the Principal. Parents are always welcome to attend.
Children may bring bicycles to school provided that:
an approved safety helmet is worn;
no bicycle is ridden within school premises;
The bike is locked while at school
While all care will be taken regarding supervision of bicycles, no responsibility will be assumed by the
The opportunity is given for students to buy books through the Ashton Scholastic Book Club. Information regarding this service is sent to parents without obligation.
Each prep student is assigned a year six and a year 3 “buddy”.
The buddies do a variety of activities together during the year. The “buddy system” gives the seniors the
opportunity to exercise their leadership qualities. The system also provides each prep student with important contact people during the first years of primary school.
The school has a contract with O’Shannessy to provide daily transport to and from
school for our students. The school bus travel is free to families who live more than
4.8kms from the school and where St Joseph’s is their nearest Catholic Primary School.
It is expected that children will use the school bus if they live more than 4.8 kms from
the school.
To be eligible to use the bus children must have a current Bus Conveyance Allowance. Conveyance Allowance forms are available from the office.
Parents are asked to observe the following rules in relation to dropping children at school.
Enter via the gate nearest to the school
Do not exceed a 5kph speed limit in the school grounds
Give way to pedestrians
Park in designated bays facing the church
Accompany your child from your vehicle to the classroom or supervised play area
Exit via the gate nearest to the school
CARPARK (cont)
Students are not allowed in the car park area unless accompanied by an adult
Children enter via the main entrance if their parents park in Constitution Hill Road
Enter via the gate nearest to the school
Do not exceed a 5kph speed limit in the school grounds
Give way to pedestrians
Park in designated bays facing the church
Accompany your child from the pick up area to your vehicle
As the car park doubles as hard surface playground space during the day, there will be no
vehicle access between the hours of 9:30am and 3:15pm daily. Parents visiting the school
during the day will be required to park out on the road
The school must be notified immediately if there is a change in address or phone number at
home or in the work place of parents. This is to ensure contact in the case of emergency.
In the event where a current court order applies to children at the school, the custodial parent is obliged to present the school with a copy of the court order to ensure that the school
is aware of any custody arrangements. Where there are no court orders in place and parents
are separated, the school needs to be notified of current mutual access arrangements.
School principals, after consultation with their School/Parish Education Boards and/or appropriate parent representative groups and approval by the Parish Priest, are responsible for
the number and timing of school closure/pupil free days.
In general, the school will be closed on four days throughout the year to enable the total
staff to attend in-service curriculum activities. Parents are informed of these closures well in
Individual teachers and groups of teachers attend in-service activities throughout the year.
On these occasions, replacement teachers are employed to take the class of teachers involved. Pupil free days are used for the following purposes:
• teacher professional learning;
• curriculum development and planning;
• student assessment and reporting
Disciplinary practices aim to develop responsible self discipline among students. The discipline
policy at St Joseph’s is based on Lee Canter's Assertive Discipline Model. Specific observable
rules are established for the classroom and playground. Positive consequences are established
for students following school rules and a logical series of consequences are put in place for inappropriate behaviour. St Joseph’s School has a Responsible Behaviour statement that fully outlines the beliefs
The Classroom and Playground Discipline Plan consists of three parts
CLASS RULES that students from Prep – Grade 6 must follow at all times. Rules are to be
displayed in every classroom.
SUPPORTIVE FEEDBACK that students will receive for following the rules. Most student
behaviour interaction will be supportive feedback.
CORRECTIVE ACTIONS that result when students choose not to follow the rules. Minimalist interventions
The rules in our school are:
1. Follow directions
2. Use hands, feet and objects in a safe way
3. Listen to the speaker without interrupting
4. Move safely at all times
5. Use equipment with care
6. Speak appropriately. (No swearing, yelling or put-downs. Use manners).
In the interests of child safety and for all who use the school, dogs are not permitted on school
grounds at any time.
If children are to be collected early for dental, medical appointments etc, the classroom teacher
needs to be notified by the parent in the morning. When collecting the child, the parent must
come to the office and sign the In/Out Student Register. The child being collected will then be
called to come to the school office.
Information needed in the case of emergency is kept in the School Office. This information needs
to be updated constantly, therefore it is important that any alteration of contact persons, phone
numbers or addresses be brought to the attention of the school immediately.
Applications for enrolment of pupils for the following year's Prep class are called during Term 2.
Parents are notified about new enrolments through the school newsletter, the Parish Bulletin, the
local newspaper and on kindergarten notice boards. Children may be enrolled to start school in
February of the year in which they turn five, provided their birthday is on or before the 30th
Excursions take place in each grade of the school. They are invaluable in stimulating the children's
interest and are always preceded or followed up by class work relating to the excursion. It is expected all children will normally take part in these activities.
Parents will be notified in writing at all times when teachers plan for students to leave the school
grounds. A mobile phone accompanies any group offsite or on excursions, in order to provide immediate communication with the school or emergency services.
The Fitzgerald Shield is a house competition that runs throughout the year. The winning house for
the year is announced at the end of year assembly. Mother Mary Gabriel Fitzgerald, a Sister of Mercy,
was the first principal of St. Joseph’s School. She was principal from 1932 to 1935.
Students do not go up as a total class into the next year level. Classes are re-grouped each year and
students are mixed carefully taking into account an equal distribution of gender, academic ability,
individual, social, emotional and behavioural needs and students who would benefit by being kept
together or separated. Students from the same family will generally not be placed in the same class,
however upon specific request from parents, this will be considered. Through the school newsletter
parents are invited to participate in the class placement process by putting in writing to the school
principal specific learning needs that they wish to be considered in the placement of their child.
Your child’s health is very important. If a child is sick, he/she should not attend school as it slows
down recovery and prevents learning (further information is available from school).
Chicken Pox:
Excluded until fully recovered or for at least 5 days after
the eruption first appears.
Exclude at least 4 days after onset of rash.
Rubella (German Measles): Exclude until fully recovered or for at least four days
after onset of rash.
Impetigo (School Sores):
Exclude until appropriate treatment has commenced.
Sores on exposed surfaces must be covered with a watertight dressing.
Head Lice:
Exclude until appropriate treatment has commenced.
Hepatitis A:
Exclude until a medical certificate or recovery is received, but not before
7 days after the onset of jaundice or illness.
Hepatitis B & C:
Exclusion is not necessary.
Exclude for 9 days or until swelling goes down (whichever is sooner).
Influenza illnesses:
Exclude until well.
Re-admit the day after appropriate treatment has commenced.
Re-admit the day after appropriate treatment has commenced
Head lice are classified as ‘infestation’, they are not a disease. Please check your child’s hair regularly. Parents will be notified if the school suspects your child has head lice. Parents are responsible for the treatment of head lice. Children with head lice can be readmitted to school after
head lice treatment has commenced. A certificate from a doctor or council is not required before your child goes back to school. Head lice are not the fault of schools, other families or children.
Children are divided across four house teams. If your child has older brothers or sisters in the
school, he/she will automatically go into that team. The teams are:
Mannix (Green): Archbishop Daniel Mannix was Archbishop of Melbourne from 1917 to 1963.
He invited the Oblates to take charge of the Sorrento parish and he opened St. Joseph’s School
in January 1932.
Mazenod (Blue):
(Blue St. Eugene de Mazenod was the founder of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate
in 1826. The Oblates have been in charge of this parish since 1926.
McAuley (Red): Catherine McAuley was the founder of the Sisters of Mercy. From 1932 until
1983, the principal of St. Joseph’s was a Sister of Mercy. The Sisters taught in the school until
Bunurong (Gold): The Bunurong people were the custodians of the Mornington Peninsula for
60,000 years before white settlement.
The Health Act obliges the school to collect an Immunisation Certificate from all children at the
time of enrolment. This certificate is to be obtained by parents from Medicare.
The school has taken out a blanket Student Accident Insurance with Catholic Church Insurances
covering the total school enrolment. This policy covers students "whilst at school" only - that is,
on the school premises during school hours only and whilst participating in school camps or
authorised activities away from school. It does not include travel to or from the school.
The policy covers:- Incapacity Benefits; Loss or Damage to Teeth; Broken or Fractured Bones;
Total and Permanent Disablement; Amputation or Permanent Loss of Use of Foot / Hand / Leg /
Arm / Eye; Death.
There is no additional cost to parents as this expense is built into the Student Levy Fee Structure. Full policy details are available from the school upon request.
An “Acceptable Use” policy for Email and the Internet is in place at the school. Children not
adhering to the policy will lose the right to use the email and Internet. A “Permission To Publish” form is signed by parents before student photographs are use on the Internet. This will
be sent home in Term 1 of each school year.
All lost property is held in the side corridor of the school near the library office. At the end of
each term lost property is sorted and any un-named items are passed on to others in need of
uniform items or St Vincent de Paul.
You are asked to give your child a lunch in a lunch box if possible. It would be helpful if children bring their drinks in plastic drink bottles. It is important that each child have an amount
of lunch that can be eaten comfortably in the time allowed (10 min). We encourage parents to
provide a nutritious lunch.
PLEASE NOTE: Do not give your child drinks in glass bottles or cans as they constitute a danger. Drinks in plastic containers are fine.
The school acknowledges that certain students may require prescribed medication during the
school day to function as near to their potential as possible. The school also realises that the
administration of prescribed medication by the parent, legal guardian of the child, or by appropriate medical authorities is not always possible at the prescribed time during the school
day. The medication prescribed for the student must come in the original container and must
be labeled. There will be no changes in the dosage or the times medication is administered
without the written permission from the doctor or parent or guardian.
Where possible medication at school should be avoided. It is suggested that the parent or
guardian discuss possible alternatives to medication at school with your doctor or keep the
child at home during the course of the medication.
All money sent to the school for fees or any school activity should be in an envelope, clearly
marked as to the contents. Please do not send large amounts of cash to school with children.
We cannot be responsible for money lost in transit.
Mobile phones are not to be used at school. Mobile phones should be handed into the office
at the beginning of the school day and collected from the office at the end of the school day.
Parents are advised to contact the school office if a message is to be passed
on to their child. Portable gaming and music players are not to be brought to
school by children.
A school newsletter is compiled and sent home with the eldest child in the family on Wednesday
each week. This newsletter is a major communication link between school and home and contains information of coming events and other matters we wish to bring to your attention. Please
read the newsletter carefully and keep it for referral. Contributions from children, teachers and
parents are always welcome. Every effort is made to also send other notices home on that day.
The deadline for typing purposes is 9.00 Wednesday morning. Parents will have the option of
receiving the weekly newsletter in electronic format via email. The newsletter is also available on
the school’s website our via our school app.
Parents make an important contribution to the life of the school and there are many opportunities available for parent involvement. A most valuable assistance to the school is provided by
Classroom Helpers who support literacy in the early years P-4 classrooms. A training course can
be provided to increase parents understanding of literacy acquisition, assist in the development
of their questioning skills and assist them in providing support for small groups of students in
the literacy program. Other opportunities for parental involvement include: Class reps, Excursions, Computers, Covering of library and class books, Swimming and the Parents and Friends.
A group of parents operating through the Parents & Friends offers support to families in need.
Families may require assistance for many reasons; sickness, accident, birth of a new child and being new to the school.
Parents for Parents aims to provide support according to need and circumstance; transporting
children, providing a meal or making contact with a new family.
The Parents & Friends Association is the main formal avenue for parental involvement and participation in the life of the school. It strives to promote the welfare of the school community and
stimulate interest in the school. The two primary purposes of this group are to hold social gatherings for families to get to know each other and functions which raise funds for the school to
purchase equipment above and beyond the scope of the normal school budget.
Parents are welcome to become involved on the committee. The first meeting in the school year
is traditionally the Annual General Meeting, which is held in mid February. At this meeting all positions are declared vacant and a new committee and class representatives are elected. Priorities
and activities for the year are also established.
Parent-teacher meetings represent a perfect opportunity for parents to play an active role in
their child’s education. At St Joseph’s parent/teacher interviews are held formally in term one
and term 2 each year. They provide an opportunity for parents to discuss the progress of their
children and any concerns that either teacher or parent may have.
Teachers are also available at other times to discuss your child's educational growth. However,
parents are asked to see the teacher and make an appointment for an interview, stating the reason for this request. This ensures that the teacher is available and can prepare so that the interview is profitable for all concerned.
In common with most schools, class and individual photographs are taken each year.
Parents are given the opportunity to choose a package and pay for the package before photographs are taken. (but are under no obligation)
Reporting student progress to parents involves:
Student Work Samples Folders sent home at the end of each Semester
Parent/Teacher interviews held twice per year
Written Progress Reports sent home mid-year and end of year.
All items that are to go to the office (absentee notes, permission slips, etc.) are to go via the classroom message box.
The partnership role of parents, school, priest and parish for the effective preparation of each student is at the heart of our Sacramental Program. Children in Grade 3 are given the opportunity to
participate in the Sacrament of Reconciliation for the first time. Children in Grade 4 are invited to
participate in their First Communion and children in grade 5/6 are provided the opportunity to
celebrate the sacrament of Confirmation every second year.
The immediate preparation for each of the three sacraments mentioned above will involve the
parents, Parish and teachers. Parents who wish their children to receive the sacraments will be required to attend preparation nights and a Commitment mass. At each of these sessions, there will
be instruction from the priest/sacramental team on some aspect of the sacrament, and an explanation to parents about how to support their child's preparation. Active participation by parents is
seen as essential to the effectiveness of the program.
The school provides a banking service for children. Accounts can be lodged with the Catholic Development Fund of the Archdiocese of Melbourne. Brochures and application forms are available
at the school office. Bank day is Wednesday. Teachers collect children's bank books and send
them to the office via the classroom Message box. Bank books are returned by Thursday.
School starts at 9.00am. Classes finish at 3.30pm each day. Parents need to ensure that their children arrive at school in time to unpack their belongings and are ready for the start of school.
Lateness for school is unacceptable. Late comers cause disruption to the start of the school day
for the class, miss important instructions and create an unnecessary additional workload for
teachers and school office staff. Children who arrive late for school must be signed in at the front
School fees are determined by the Parish Priest in consultation with the principal and school accountant and are reviewed annually. Wherever possible the increase in school fees is kept in line
with CPI.
The tuition fee is charged yearly and may be paid by instalments. These funds are paid into the
school’s General Account which, together with State and Commonwealth monies, is used to pay
teachers’ salaries, maintenance costs, recurrent costs such as electricity, etc.
The building levy is charged yearly and may be paid by instalments. This levy is used to offset the
costs involved in meeting our ongoing capital expenditures.
The composite levy is charged yearly and may be paid by instalments. This money is used to pay
for materials, textbooks, excursions and other requisites.
Direct Debit and Credit Card facilities are available for paying school fees.
8:45 - 9:00
Teacher supervision of yard
9:00 - 11:00
11:00 - 11:30
11:30 - 1:30
1:30 - 2:30
2:30 - 3:30
3:30 - 3:45
Teacher supervision of yard and bus travellers
The Health Department makes available a school nurse who carries out examinations of all
children (with parental consent) in their first year of school. Specific information will be
made available at the time of her visit.
Children are able to receive a Catholic Secondary Education by enrolling at Padua College.
This is our regional Catholic Secondary school with campuses at Rosebud and Mornington.
Information about Padua can be found on their website:
On occasions children may need to be collected from school during school hours.
Parents are asked to notify the school prior to the child being collected and notified as to
who will be collecting the child. On arrival at the school, the person collecting should report
to the office to complete the Sign in/Sign out Register. Following completion of the Sign
Out register the child will be called to the school office.
Children in the senior section of the school participate in inter-school sport.
St. Joseph’s is a member of the Victorian Primary Schools Sports Association.
Through our involvement with this Association, students are able to be involved in Zone,
Regional and State events.
Staff meetings are held on Monday and Tuesday each week from 3:30 to 5:00pm. Parents
are reminded that teachers will not be available for interviews after school on these days.
While is it not necessary to celebrate birthdays at school we understand that parents often want
to celebrate their child’s birthday with their class. We do not object to this but to ensure that all
students are treated equally parents are asked to observe the following guidelines.
If cake is to be shared then parents are asked to provide a batch of cupcakes for the class.
If confectionery (lollies or chocolate) is to be shared then please provide a small bag for each
child in the class or enough to pass out so that each child receives the same item.
The classroom teacher needs to be notified at least one week in advance so that children in the
class with life-threatening allergies can be catered for on the day.
Student Wellbeing is a whole school approach in partnership with parents and the wider community. St Joseph’s makes every effort to provide a safe and supportive environment so that students feel safe and are free from harm.
We have a student wellbeing coordinator one day per week to oversee support programs offered
to students and works with the principal and teaching staff to develop and maintain a safe and
supportive school environment. Our student wellbeing coordinator also works with individual
children on social and emotional issues including grief and loss.
In addition to the materials that the school provides from the composite levy, all
students start the year with a collection of exercise books, pencils, etc.
Student requisite lists are usually distributed to parents in October. These
lists need to be returned to the school without delay so that individual
orders can be packaged for collection at the end of January—Nepean Office Smart (Rye Newsagency).
Student requisites are separate from the school fees (tuition fees, building
levy and composite levy).
Children are required to wear a wide-brimmed school hat in the playground in 1st and
4th terms. Children who do not have a wide-brimmed school hat on these days and on
any other day when the sun poses a threat to their health, will be required to sit in a
sheltered area. Parents are expected to ensure that children have a hat at school at all
times during the first and fourth terms.
We share an outdoor swimming pool and equipment with Sorrento Primary School, during first
and fourth terms. Students in grades 1—4 have lessons in firsts term. In fourth term, students
from prep - 4 have their lessons. Students in years 5 and 6 have eight intensive sessions over
three weeks during third term at the Peninsula Aquatic Centre, Rosebud. The programs we teach
are based on the Aquapac Lifesaving Society and the Victorian Auswim Association. We expect
that parents will ensure that all children fully participate in the swimming programs.
Thursday 29th January - Friday, 27th March
Monday 13th April - Friday, 26th June
Monday, 13th July - Friday, 18th September
Monday, 5th October - Friday 18th December
Labour Day
Good Friday
Easter Monday ANZAC Day
Queen’s Birthday Cup Day
Monday 9th March
Friday 3rd April
Monday 6thApril
Saturday 25th April
Monday 8th June
Tuesday 3rd November
The Thomas Hayes Award is named in honour of Fr. Thomas Hayes, O.M.I., the first Oblate
Parish Priest here at St. Mary’s, Star of the Sea, Parish. Fr. Hayes was parish priest from
1926 till 1935. The award helps us focus on the values that are at the heart of all we endeavour to do. The award is presented to a year 6 student at the end of each year.
Expensive or “treasured” possessions - toys, computer games, expensive watches, and so on
- should not to be brought to school. Children become very upset if such items are damaged or misplaced. School can not be held responsible for lost or damaged possessions.
The school tuck shop operates on Fridays each week through the voluntary help of parents.
The tuck shop sells icy poles and treats. The maximum amount to be spent over the counter is $2.00.
Lunches are not available through the Tuck-shop but can be pre-ordered at the beginning
of the day each Friday. Lunch orders are placed in the tubs at the front entrance to the
school. Lunch orders are provided by Patrick’s of Sorrento. Price lists are distributed at the
beginning of each year.
Orders must be lodged in a paper bag and contain the
following information:
Child’s name
Class and teacher’s name
The order
Money enclosed in the bag (wrapped separately)
It is expected that students of St. Joseph’s School will wear full and correct uniform.
Girls Summer
School hat
School jumper
Black School shoes
Summer dress
Boys Summer
School hat
School jumper
Black School shoes
Blue short sleeve shirt
Grey pleated shorts
Navy socks
Navy socks
Girls Winter
Boys Winter
School Beanie (opt)
School beanie (opt)
School Jumper
School Jumper
Black School shoes
Black School shoes
Blue long sleeve shirt
Blue long sleeve shirt
Winter tunic
Grey pleated pants
Navy tights or socks
Navy socks
A school rain jacket is also available
Sport Uniform
Girls Sport
School rugby top
School polo shirt
Navy Rugby shorts
White socks
Athletic shoes (runners)
Navy tracksuit pants
Boys Sport
School rugby top
School polo shirt
Navy rugby shorts
White socks
Athletic shoes (runners)
Navy tracksuit pants
Sumer and winter uniform may be worn at any time however; children may not wear a
combination of summer and winter uniforms.
School shoes are considered to be shoes made of leather or synthetic leather only.
Black Volleys of Converse leisure footwear are not acceptable.
Athletic shoes include runners and cross trainers. Basketball boots, Converse and Volleys are not appropriate footwear for sport.
Sport uniform will be worn on 2 designated days per week.
Jewellery is restricted to stud or sleeper earrings. For safety reasons necklaces and
bracelets are not to be worn,
Children are to use the St. Joseph’s school bag.
The Grade 6 rugby top is considered part of the sport uniform only.
A note from parents to explain non-compliance is expected.
All parents, friends, trades people and delivery personnel are asked to sign the Visitor’s
book at he school office upon arrival during school hours and register their name and time
of arrival. On leaving the school, visitors must sign out.
Classes proceed as normal on wet days. Children spend their lunch break and morning
recess in their classrooms under supervision. The students engage in quiet activities, e.g.
games, reading. Students are dismissed at the normal time.
In 2006, the Victorian Government introduced a new checking system to help protect
children under 18 years of age from physical or sexual harm.
The Working with Children (WWC) Check creates a mandatory minimum checking standard
across Victoria. The WWC Check helps to keep children safe by preventing those who pose
a risk to the safety of children from working with them, in either paid or volunteer work.
All volunteers at St Joseph’s who are working with children need to have a current WWC