Dear Parents and Carers,
The children have settled well into class routines and learning. Kindergarten and Year 1/2 classes have begun the introduction of the InitiaLit program and students have been highly engaged and active in their learning using this new format. We have continued with our implementation of ‘Daily Review’ in all classrooms. In the junior classrooms these have focused on Numeracy (as continual review is embedded within the InitiaLit format) and in Years 3-6 Daily Review has targeted both literacy and numeracy. Our aim with Daily Review is to assist students to move new information and skills from their short-term memory into long term memory. As some of our students have said, “It helps me make it stick!” The practice of Daily Review has also been helpful when students are absent as classes are constantly revisiting content.
Staff Professional Learning
As part of our school’s journey with the CATALYST program, last Friday our classroom teachers engaged in small group coaching sessions focussed upon Cognitive Load Theory, Daily Review and the use of high impact teaching practices across curriculum areas. Staff were very positive about their involvement and learning from these sessions and are greatly looking forward to continuing our collaboration with our coach over the remainder of the year.
In recognition of the enthusiasm shown by our teachers last year and the great work they have been doing in this space, it was exciting to receive an invitation by Ollie Lovell (Cognitive Load Theory guru) for our teachers to collaborate with him on a professional learning project he is developing. I believe that this speaks volume about the quality of teachers that we have here at St Benedict’s.
Today is Ash Wednesday which marks the beginning of Lent. You might remember Lent as being a time of giving up things. Instead of giving up – why not take up? Take up spending time in prayer each day, going to Mass, saying only kind things, being more patient, tolerant, considerate…. Pope Francis offers the following thoughts about fasting during Lent:
- Fast from hurting words and say kind words.
- Fast from sadness and be filled with gratitude.
- Fast from anger and be filled with patience.
- Fast from pessimism and be filled with hope.
- Fast from worries and have trust in God.
- Fast from complaints and contemplate simplicity.
- Fast from pressures and be prayerful.
- Fast from bitterness and fill your hearts with joy.
- Fast from selfishness and be compassionate to others.
- Fast from grudges and be reconciled.
- Fast from words and be silent so you can listen.
Last week we were informed of the appointment of Rachel Smith as Acting Principal at St Clare of Assisi, Conder until the end of 2022. We congratulate Rachel on her appointment and wish her well in this position for the year. As a result, the position of Acting Principal at St Benedict’s for Terms 2-4 has now been advertised by Catholic Education. We will inform you when an appointment has been made.
Whilst mask wearing requirements are easing across the ACT, the requirement to wear masks in school settings is not changing. If you are entering the school, all people over 12 years old (except students of St Benedict’s) are required to wear masks. We continue to encourage students in Year 3-6 to wear masks and also support any students in K-2 who wish to wear masks to do so. Our strict hygiene practices have greatly assisted us in keeping our school safe in these times. I would like to assure our community that we will continue these strict cleaning practices and the promotion of personal hygiene by our students. Our school is very grateful for everyone’s efforts in adhering to the COVID restrictions. We are very much looking forward to the time when we can once again gather as a school community and celebrate our students and families.
If you require uniform items please email the school:
with attention Mrs Hemphill or Mrs Cox with the list of items required. Please include either your telephone number or email address.
We will endeavour to fill your order and reply to you as soon as possilble.
St Benedict's Parish
Fr Rembert Fernando MGL
Fr Baiju Thomas MGL
Onela Iruthayaraj (Parish Secretary)
St Benedict’s will hold an additional Mass this evening at 5.30pm for Ash Wednesday.
Masses have recommenced at the usual times. 170 people are able to attend each Mass in person. Please follow social distancing and sanitise before entry. Face masks are no longer mandatory, but encouraged for those 12 years and above. Parishioners are not required to produce evidence of vaccination. Upon entry please sign in using the CBR app, if you are unable to do so please use the sign in sheets that are available. If you are unwell due to immunity issues it is better to stay home.