Dear Parents and Carers,
Schools have been asked to prepare should the time come that we are faced with a shutdown due to COVID-19. There have been no decisions made to date but it is highly desirable that all students have remote access to their learning should this occur. St Benedict’s is working proactively behind the scenes to ensure all is in place to support students. In the event of a school shutdown, student work will most likely be in the form of an online presence using shared documents and other online platforms.
To this end, please ensure you have connected with the platforms being used in your child’s Year level:
Kindergarten – Year 2 - Studyladder
Year 3 – Year 6 - Google Docs and Google Classroom
To Help with This Could You;
- Please check with your child/ren that they have access to appropriate online platforms from home.
- Please check that your child/ren have their access codes to access 'google classroom’ or ‘Studyladder’. Teachers will also ensure that their students have classroom codes recorded for ease of access.
If you know your child is having difficulties with their login or assistance is required with navigating the online learning platforms we use, please email your child's teacher or the school at Office.StBenedicts@cg.catholic.edu.au as soon as possible and help will be provided.
One challenge may be reliable internet access. If your child will not be able to access the internet or an appropriate device, please inform us via the above mentioned email address.
I am pleased to report that students and staff are happy and settled at present. Taking a proactive approach to this situation is essential. St Benedict’s will do its best to provide guided learning and engagement for our students if we are faced with a school closure. I will continue to keep you updated as information is received.
It is VITAL that we maintain accurate and current contact information for all families. If you change a phone number, email address, postal address or emergency contact, you must inform us immediately.
Our primary and most effective form of communication is via the SchoolZine App. (SZapp). Emergency announcements, including information about possible school closures, will be communicated via the app.
Please ensure you have installed the app on your devices, enabled notifications, and checked the settings for the correct year levels.
If you would like help accessing or installing this, please contact the Front Office.
The following was sent home with your child on Tuesday, so please refer to it as a reminder rather than news.
All whole school assemblies, learning celebrations, liturgies and school masses have been cancelled for this term.
All external excursions and sporting events have been cancelled.
Merit certificates and Growth Mindset awards will be presented at morning assembly on Friday.
At this stage, parent volunteers, who are healthy and feeling well, may continue to help at school. However, it is imperative that all volunteers sign in and record where in the school they will be helping. Parents and carers should not be in a classroom unless they have signed in at the Front Office.
Please note that staff members also sign in and out of the school each day.
Sick Children and Staff
All children and staff who are unwell will be sent home.
There is a shortage of teachers in Canberra, which may impact on our ability to employ enough relief teachers on any given day. We will do our best to ensure each class has a teacher, but this may not always be possible. There may be occasions when your child is given appropriate work and directed to spend time in another class for the day. All class teachers are planning to ensure that, if this is necessary, the work is relevant and will support what is planned for the term.
Though these measures could seem a little unfriendly, we will do our best to maintain a positive and welcoming demeanour. We will continue to be guided by relevant Territory, State and Federal bodies, and will put the health and safety of our students and staff first.
Catholic Education Canberra and Goulburn has prepared a fact sheet with answers to some frequently asked questions. This will be sent home today with your child.
At the moment we are in a 24 hour news cycle about the Coronavirus. The news we are being presented with can be confronting and distressing for both adults and children alike. Below is a link to a 6 minute video on SchoolTv. This video from Dr Michael Carr-Gregg, provides some tips on helping your child understand and deal with the emotional effects of the COVID-19 situation.
Just a reminder that Harmony Day is on this Friday 20th March. The Harmony Day theme is ‘Everyone Belongs’. On 20th March students are invited to dress up in clothes from their cultural heritage. If students are unable to dress in traditional clothes, they may wear orange. Students are also invited to bring a traditional recipe which will be included in a school cookbook being organised by the Year 6 Community Leaders.
It is customary at St Benedict’s to transition into the winter school uniform at the beginning of Term 2. To help with your preparation for this transition our Second Hand Uniform Shop will be holding an outdoor clothing sale tomorrow Thursday 2nd April at 3.10pm.
Parents & Friends Treasurer Needed
As mentioned in the previous week’s newsletter we are seeking a person for the position of P&F Treasurer and would love someone to volunteer for that position for the 2020 school year.
Due to the current health concerns relating to COVID-19 (Coronavirus) all Canberra and Goulburn Archdiocesan Sacramental Programs have been put on hold until further notice. This means that our St Benedict’s First Reconciliation (Saturday 4th April) is now postponed until further notice.
Mini Vinnies and School Choir
Due to the current health concerns relating to COVID-19 (Coronavirus) lunchtime choir practice and Mini Vinnies meetings will be put on hold until further notice.
Season of Lent
Gospel Reading: John 9:1-41
In this coming Sunday’s Gospel, the healing of the man born blind invites us to focus on the physical and spiritual aspects of sight and light. This scripture passage is rich with comparison language that draws the reader into the journey of the man’s experience of encounter through to enlightenment.
For an in-depth theological exploration see Loyola Press, Sunday Connection
Father in heaven,
Your love calls us to life.
Change our anger to kindness and teach us self-control.
Caritas Project Compassion
Please continue to fill your Caritas Project Compassion donation boxes! Here are some things that students can do to earn donations:
- Unpacking the dishwasher
- Taking the washing down off the line
- Caring for pets
- Drying dishes
- Taking out the rubbish
- Helping a sibling with their homework
- Cleaning their bedroom
- Putting away groceries
- Setting the dinner table
St Vincent de Paul Night Patrol
St Vincent de Paul Night Patrol are in urgent need of donations of adult size jackets, blankets and sleeping bags. If you have any of these items that you wish to donate to the Night Patrol please give them directly to Ms Wright. Thank you.
Mini Vinnies Hygiene Donation Station
The St Vincent de Paul Night Patrol is in need of mini toiletries (hotel size is perfect) to re-stock their hygiene packs to be distributed to the people who approach the van. We invite all families to make regular donations to the Mini Vinnies Hygiene Donation Station in the Front Office. This is one way our school community can help teach our children about human dignity and how we need to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to look after their body.
Items that can be donated are
- Combs/hair brushes
- Tissue packs
- Feminine hygiene products
- Soap/body wash
- Mouth wash
- Lip balm
Community Meals Program
The Community Meals freezer is one way we can assist families who are experiencing hardship. If you are able to cook a meal, please use disposable containers and label with ingredients and date. All meal donations can be brought to the Front Office. If your family requires temporary meal assistance, you can speak in confidence to any of our staff members.
A few important dates to note for this term are, please see the changes below regarding either Postponement or cancellation of events:
2 Apr South Western Region Swimming Carnival - Postponed
3 Apr Year 3/4 Blue School Mass, 10am - Cancelled
3 Apr Ways of Being Award Ceremony, 2.30pm - Will be handed out at the morning assembly
4 Apr First Reconciliation and Mass, 4.30pm - Postponed
5 Apr Palm Sunday
6 Apr Scientist Visit Years 5 and 6
7 Apr Years 1/2 and 5/6 Holy Week Liturgy, 9.30am - In Class Only
7 Apr School Board Meeting, 6pm
8 Apr Years 1/2 and 5/6 Holy Week Liturgy, 9.30am - In Class Only
9 Apr Outdoor Education day - Cancelled
9 Apr Term 1 concludes
All Friday afternoon assemblies will be cancelled until further notice - Friday awards will be handed out at the morning assembly.
The following notes have gone home this week and will be sent home via Schoolzine App. Please remember to check your child's bag daily, this is a important way to ensure you do not miss any information:
- Directors Letter - COVID-19
- Parents Letter - COVID-19
- Harmony Day - This Friday
- Camp - Postponed
- Mountain View Choir Postponed
Thank you to all the families that have already paid their school fees for Term 1. School fee reminders went home on Tuesday and all school fees are due by Friday 3rd April, if you do not have a direct debit in place. Please contact Mrs McRae at Front Reception if you have not received your school fees or would like to discuss your school fees.
Toner Cartridge Recycle
St Benedict's has been involved with Recycling all our toner cartridges for a number of years. So to help do your little bit for the environment next time you change your toner cartridge at home please remember that you are welcome to drop it into the school recycling box.
St Benedict's has been contacted by Savvy/Lowes to be informed that due to the coronavirus circumstances they are unable to receive there normal uniform orders from the China area. Please be understanding if informed some items are out of stock. At this stage Savvy/Lowes has limited stock of the Navy Sports Trackpants and Polar Fleece Jumper.
Savvy/Lowes is currectly advising that all families look at the school's clothing pool for items in the first place.
Kinder: Reuben W, Oscar Q, Hassem A
Year 1/2G: Nathaniel G and Benjamin F
Year 3/4B: Finn O
Year 3/4G: Isadora N
Year 5/6B: Brigid N, Gabriella S and Hamish M
Year 5/6G: Zack W and Michael R
The St Benedict’s Parents and Friends Committee are still raising funds for our school through www.stuckonyou.com.au. There are a variety of Easter gifts, name labels, lunch boxes, bag tags and gifts for sale through the Stuck on You website. Please use our school code: STB when you make a purchase.
- Create your own account and place your order online
- Enter our fundraising name (STB) at the checkout to transfer points to our fundraiser
When you order from Stuck on You, St Benedict’s P&F earn up to 20 per cent commission on all orders received with our school code. The P&F are awarded points for every order made. These points are then converted to money for our school. It is important to create your own account, if you order as a guest your points will not transfer to our fundraiser. Family and friends can also use our code to help fundraise for us.
Please use the below link to go directly to our fundraising page.
The Clothing Pool will be open each Tuesday and Thursday between 2.50pm to 3.15pm by appointment.
Volunteers Needed: With the Lost Property box over flowing on a daily bases we are calling for some volunteers that are willing to go through the box a couple of times a week. Items with names will be returned to students via the note bag and all other items will be washed and given to the Clothing Pool for repurchasing. Any items not related to school will be washed and given to St Vincent de Paul or put in the bin eg: lunch boxes, drink bottles, socks and shoes.
PLEASE ENSURE YOUR CHILD/REN'S CLOTHING IS LABELLED WITH THEIR NAME.
The Lost Property Box is located in the canteen area. Please take some time to go through the box on a daily basis as students will start to need their jumpers of a morning.
Tales from the TUCKSHOP
"If it starts with a T - It's Tuckshop day!
The St Benedict's Tuckshop is now running at full swing. The new range of ice creams have been a hit with the kids. Thanks to all those parents who have offered to help or introduced themselves. Our wonderful volunteers make all the difference!
- Slinky volunteers: The apple slinky volunteers have been hard at work already. Starting at 9am, the kids come and have their apples slinkied. We have 3 slinky machines and about 50 apples to get through. Volunteers leave at 9.50am suitably caffeinated. A great opportunity to see what's going on in the Tuckshop.
- Revenge of the mutant nuggets: This week we have introduced our 'mutant' chicken nuggets. Made in house using real breast chicken and our own secret recipe.
- QKR! Is the easiest way to order your lunch. Download the app today! If you already use QKR! please update your child's class from last year. The QKR! menu is being finely tuned and will be perfect soon.
- If you would like to volunteer, please leave a name and phone number with Mrs McRae at the Front Office.
King of the Tuckshop
St Benedict's Parish
Office Hours: Tuesday to Friday 9am to 12noon
Fr Dan Benedetti MGL
Fr Rembert Fernando MGL
Fr Baiju Thomas MGL
Monica Nulley-Valdes (Parish Secretary)
Weekend Mass Times:
Youth Mass 6.00pm (last Sunday of every month)
Charismatic Mass 6.00pm every Sunday
Baptisms By Appointment
Fr Dan Benedetti MGL PP
St Benedict's Catholic Community Narrabundah ACT