Newsletter 2 2021
Dear Parents/Caregivers, Students, Staff, and Friends of St Raphael’s School,
Today we celebrated Ash Wednesday with a Liturgy led by Fr Denis. This day marks the beginning of the Liturgical season of Lent. The 40 days of Lent, leading into Easter are a reminder of the 40 days Jesus spent in the desert before beginning his ministry. The name of the day comes from the custom of marking the sign of the cross on one’s forehead to symbolise the death and remorse for past wrong doings. Traditionally the ashes are created from burning the palms used in the church on Palm Sunday the previous year. During the 40 days of Lent, we are reminded to think about how we can listen to God, reflect on our attitudes and how we can show care and kindness to one another. How can we share God’s love in our actions and words?
Last year we applied for and were successful in our application for a grant of $400 000 from the Commonwealth and State Capital Grants Program to redesign parts of the school. Parents/caregivers will have noticed that the upper level of the main building is not currently in use because we moved our senior classes to the free standing transportables this year to make way for the building refurbishment. In conjunction with Catholic Education SA, we have engaged Studio Nine Architects to work with us in designing contemporary learning spaces for our community. I will keep families informed as we progress with our developments.
As you read the newsletter you will find a section calling for parent/caregiver nominations for membership to the School Board. I ask that parents/caregivers consider nominating for the School Board. Retiring from the School Board this year are Sue Gabel, Michelle Santin, Bridget Kearins and Jennifer Harvey, Parish Pastoral representative. We meet twice per term and begin our meetings at 6:00 pm. We aim to conclude our meetings by 7:30 pm leaving some time for parents/caregivers to return home and spend some quality time with their families. Please consider nominating to become part of our School Board. If you wish to learn more about the Board, I am happy to have a conversation with interested parents/caregivers.
You will find the link to the nominations page here including information about the Annual General Meeting (AGM) being held on Tuesday 16 March 2021 at 6:00pm.
Lastly, thank you to all families who supported us by donating a gold coin to our Shrove Tuesday pancake morning. All money raised will be donated to Project Compassion. It is always so wonderful to welcome families to the school. We thank Emma Alexander who prepared the pancake batter for us all to enjoy and to our loyal chickens who supplied all the eggs!
‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
With every best wish,
This week marks a very important time in our Liturgical calendar. Today is Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. We gathered as a whole school for a reflective Liturgy led by Father Denis. Our Liturgy focused on the theme of beginning again, just like the Australian landscape after bushfires. Father Denis encouraged us to think about the following during these 40 days of Lent:
To remove things that hold us back
To allow new life to begin to grow and
To prepare our hearts for the Easter light to emerge.
Project Compassion: “Be More”
One of our major fundraising efforts at St Raphael’s School is Project Compassion. We kicked this off yesterday at our Shrove Tuesday breakfast. Many thanks to all who supported this annual fundraising appeal. Classes will have boxes on their prayer tables during Lent and we encourage children to donate any spare change towards Caritas Australia who do charitable works worldwide. Please see the attached link for more information. www.caritas.org.au
On Saturday evening the St Raphael’s School staff were welcomed at the Parish Mass to make their commitment prayer of service to our school community. Part of our pledge included “may we always be conscious of the dignity of those whom we serve so we build a faith – filled community that encourages learning and belonging”. It was a beautiful service and lovely to see the staff and parishioners connected in this way.
Sacramental Program 2021
Pauline Connell, Father Denis and I have been discussing our plans for the Sacramental Program for 2021. If you have a child interested in receiving their sacraments this year, please contact the Parish Office for more information. We are committed to ensuring the program is a partnership between Parish, school and home and look forward to journeying together in both the preparation and celebrations.
Each week our staff gathers together to share in prayer. As a staff, we value this time to join with one another in faith. This morning our reading from Mark spoke to us about the Kingdom of God being at hand and that no matter the challenging circumstances we may find ourselves in, we will discover, with God’s help, that we are far stronger than we think.
Have a great week ahead.
FOR THE HEART......
“But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything will reward you.” (Matthew 6:3-4)
Assistant Principal Religious Identity and Mission
Sacraments of Initiation 2021
Families who wish to explore their child preparing for the Sacraments of Reconciliation, Confirmation and First Communion this year are advised the Information Evening will be held in St Paul’s Church on Wednesday 24th March at 7pm. Attendance at this meeting is a requirement to learn how the programme will be delivered this year and to answer questions you may have. Children do not attend this meeting. Like all areas of their development, children mature at different times. Typically children enrolled in the programme are aged 8-12 years but must be at least 7 years of age. We do not attach the Sacraments to specific school year levels, rather together we can discern if your child is ready. If you would like to learn more, please email Pauline at email@example.com to register your interest and attendance at the meeting. Kelly Manera will be involved with the programme and is able to answer questions for you too.
This week we begin our time of reflection before Easter. The church calls this time Lent. You will notice that the priests will change from green (Ordinary Time) to purple vestments. I wonder what changes people might notice in us as we try to slow down and think more deeply about our faith and how we can be the best person we can possibly be? Lent has often been thought of as a time when we give up something, but equally it is a time when we take things on. We can try to complain less and take on being grateful and satisfied. We can be more helpful at home and school without being asked. What will you take on for the next 40 days?
The Science of Reading
Our Reception to Year 3 classes have now embarked on the first stage of our new approach to teaching reading, spelling and grammar. Each morning learners are engaging in explicit teaching to build their:
- phonological awareness (recognising the smaller components in words)
- phonemic awareness (recognising the individual sounds in the spoken word), and
- phonics skills (recognising that letters represent the sounds in print)
Learning in this way is multi-sensory, engaging auditory (listening), oral (speaking) and written processes.
We have engaged Linda Clune, a Specialist Dyslexia Multi-Sensory Teacher to work intensely with our teachers to build expertise in this approach. Many families attended Linda’s very informative session earlier in the term. By way of follow up, Linda has asked me to share the following links for families who are wanting to find out more about this approach.
Alison Clarke – What’s Wrong with Predictive Text
Five From Five website
The Science of Reading website
We are also currently in the process of looking at our older learners who may have gaps in their phonological and phonemic awareness and putting into place some intervention to help our learners bridge these gaps.
Assistant Principal – Director of Learning
There are currently vacancies in piano, drums and voice. If your child would like to learn an instrument, information is available from the office. Please complete an expression of interest form and tutors will contact you directly.
Last Friday I held the first session of the Ukulele Choir. It was a chance for students in Year 2-4 to have a try to see if they would like to join. To my delight, it was more popular than expected and I had more students than ukuleles! Please return forms ASAP as places will be given to these students first. I can’t wait to share a performance with you.
Performing Arts Coordinator
Sports Day 2021
Sports Day is just over 5 weeks away – Thursday 25 March from 9:15am – 1:00pm. It will be held on the school grounds. All families are most welcome to come along and support the students. Our new students to the school have been placed into a team. Classes have started practising in PE lessons for this active, fun-filled event. It would be great to see you all there!
Trial for Catholic Schools Swimming Carnival Team 2021
Trials will take place on Friday 26 February for Year 3 to 6 students who are interested in representing the school in the annual Catholic Schools Swimming Carnival. The trial will take place on Friday 26 February from 4:00 – 5:00pm at Burnside Pool. It is a requirement that students must be able to swim 25 metres without stopping in reasonably deep water.
Once the trial is complete, a team will be selected and those students selected will be expected to attend two additional training sessions leading into the event. The actual carnival will be held on Thursday 18 March from 10:00am – 12:00pm at SA Aquatic Centre at Marion.
Kelly Sports Clinics
All families received a flyer from Kelly Sports a fortnight ago advertising a 6-week sports program available to interested students at our school. We are offering a MULTI-SPORTS program to students in Reception to Year 3 and a VOLLEYBALL program for Year 4 to Year 6 students. The programs will commence next Tuesday 23 February on the school grounds from 3:15 – 4:15pm. Not too late to register (see attached flyer).
Hot Weather Policy
Our school sports policy recommends that all trainings, games and sports programs will be cancelled if the forecasted temperature is 36C or above according to the BOM (Bureau of Meteorology) website. If unsure, please contact the school after 2pm on the day to determine if it will go ahead.
There are flyers attached to this week’s newsletter regarding local community AFL sports events/programs on offer.
P.E. and Sports Coordinator
St Raphael’s School Parents and Friends Committee Meeting
The Loft at St Raphael’s School
Monday 22 February 2021 from 6pm - 7pm
We are excited about the possibilities this committee brings to our school community. We invite those interested to come along and participate.
We look forward to seeing you on Monday 22 February at 6:00pm.
School Fee accounts have been mailed out to all families.
Accounts paid in full by no later than 1 March will receive 5% discount on Tuition fees.
Upfront Payment Discounts per family:
1 child family $140.00
2 children family $245.00
3 children family $315.00
Please deduct this amount from your payment.
Regular payments from a bank or credit card can be arranged fortnightly or monthly. Direct Debit forms are available from the front office or from the school website and are due on 22 February 2021.
School Card application forms for 2021 are available from the front office or apply online:
Discounts for eligible school card families will be applied once application is approved.
I am happy to advise that we return to a normal summer menu this week, with lots of favourites now available again. Thank you for your continued support of the Canteen. Please find attached an up to date menu, some prices may have changed from last year, so if you are not using Qkr! to place your order, please ensure you refer to our updated menu by clicking here for the latest prices.
Year 6 Aquatics
St Raphael’s School Parents and Friends Committee Meeting
AGM and School Board
Swimming Carnival Year 3 - Year 6
Sports Day 2021
Upcoming EventsSee All Events
Pupil Free Dates 2021
Term 1 Friday 9 April
Term 2 Friday 2 July
Term 3 Monday 19 July
Term 4 Friday 10 December
Miss Rowson's Reception Class Page
Parish BulletinPlease click here to read the latest Parish Bulletin
Child Speech Pathologist Talk
Child Speech Pathologist Talk
Thursday, 25 February 2021
7:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Unley Town Hall, Oxford Terrace, Unley
Please see attached flyer here.
Cabra Dominican College - Year 7, 2023 intake
Cabra Dominican College is accepting enrolments for their Year 7, 2023 intake:
Applications for enrolment will close on Friday 9 April, 2021. Siblings of existing students will also need to complete an enrolment application form.
Enrolment Interviews will be conducted in the last week of May, 2021.