Absences or Withdrawal from School
Parents are asked to inform the school in writing if their child is to be absent from school for any length of time. A reasonable explanation is required when the child is late for school in the morning.
Once a child has arrived at school he/she shall not leave the school without the permission of a teacher and the Principal or one of the Assistant Principals. This permission will not be granted unless it has been requested in writing from the parents. This includes going home at lunch time. In an emergency, permission should be requested by telephone. Families need to be responsible for keeping relevant staff well informed about circumstances that influence the children's schooling and general care between 8.30am and 3.30 pm.
Custody/access rights information should be re-stated at the beginning of each year or whenever such circumstances arise. (Sensitive information is always treated in the strictest of confidence). It would be helpful if changes to normal drop off and pick up arrangements could be conveyed to staff. Parents or their delegates are asked not to take children from the school without notification to the classroom teacher. Parents are requested to sign students out at the office if they are collecting a child for an appointment. When students are returned to school, it is necessary to sign them in again.
Assemblies are held each Friday at 8.50am. On occasions, classes’ present assembly items and special assemblies may be organised as necessary. Class item Assemblies are rostered for Terms Two and Three and are published in the Term Planner and the Weekly School newsletter, “Concern”.
Attendance at School
Daily attendance is recorded in a Classroom Register of Attendance. Parents are asked to ensure children arrive at school punctually. Late arrival at school disrupts lessons, therefore parents are asked to ensure children are at school ready to start their day prior to the first bell at 8.50 a.m. After several occasions of a child arriving late for school, a letter will be sent home to parents advising them of the situation and calling for parents to rectify the problem.
The following three awards, Achievement, Religious and Encouragement are offered to all children in each of the year levels. These awards see a Book Prize presented at the end of year Christmas Concert and Prize Night.
The additional awards of Citizenship, Creativity and Sport, (for both a Boy and a Girl), are offered specifically to Year Seven Graduates.
The Parish Scholarship is available to a school student from any year level, and the Iacobellis Scholarship is awarded to a Year Six Student, for use towards fees in Year Seven of the following year.
This award is for consistently good results and achievement in academic areas (language, mathematics and other learning areas). The recipient of this award would have demonstrated a strong, consistent and independent work ethic throughout the year.
This award is for Christian living – a display of faith in action, (for example, a commitment to service or participation in spiritual development), and the ability to apply the learned content and knowledge to his or her everyday life both within the classroom and out of school. Within the sacramental years, children would have demonstrated a level of maturity and commitment within their faith.
This award is for the child who has strived to overcome some difficulties and has consistently applied him/herself to required tasks, with pleasing results.
Parish Scholarship and Year Six Iacobellis Scholarship
These scholarships are for children who are considered worthy recipients of a scholarship that will assist with tuition fees. They are to assist a family with the costs of education and would be awarded to children who are applying themselves wholeheartedly to set tasks and their studies. They are not necessarily in recognition of excellence in the academic field, but highlight a consistently hard working attitude to all, the child undertakes.
The St Patrick’s Parish Scholarship is awarded to assist a child to successfully integrate their religious knowledge and understanding within their lives. The scholarship recognises the child’s active involvement within the parish and assists in a child’s faith formation and religious development, ensuring this is strengthened, in their time at St Patrick’s School and covers the cost of the year’s Tuition fees. (Aimed at maintaining a child’s Catholicity)
It is the responsibility of the Year Six teacher to nominate a candidate for the Iacobellis Scholarship. This Scholarship assists with the Tuition fees for a student in Year Seven, and is aimed at recognising the hard work and diligence a child displays in all aspects of their lives here at St Patrick’s School.
Children are encouraged to arrive at school at 8.30 a.m. Classrooms open from this time and this is a signal to children to prepare for the day's work.
The first bell rings at 8.50 am and classes commence at this time.
10.30am Morning Recess
10.50am Classes Resume
12.30pm Lunch (Covered Area until 12.45pm)
1.10pm- Warning Bell for toilet visit, washing and drinking fountains.
1.15pm Classes Resume
2.00pm Crunch and Sip
3.15pm Bus Bell
3.20pm School Ends
Please note, Early Close on each and every Monday-
2.25pm Bus Bell
2.30pm School Ends
Children are not to be at school before 8.30am and are to leave by 3.30pm. Outside these hours, school staff are engaged in various duties and do not provide supervision of students. Teachers’ duty of care extends to students between 8.30am and 3.30pm.
Bicycles may be ridden to and from school by children. The police recommend that children below 8 years of age do not ride to school unless accompanied by an adult. It is compulsory for cyclists to wear properly fitted safety helmets. No student is permitted to use another student’s bike. Lectures on bike, pedestrian and general road safety will be given by the appropriate authorities from time to time.
Bus Routines, Behaviour / rules
- Children are to remain seated at all time.
- An acceptable noise level is to be maintained.
- Children are to be respectful and courteous towards the driver, supervising adult and other passengers.
- Children are to conduct themselves in a responsible manner which reflects the expected behaviour of the school.
Class Masses/Prayer Services
During each term, each year level will plan for a Mass or Liturgy at a date that is suitable. The Assistant Principal (Religious Education) will coordinate this timetable.
The Mass/Liturgy will either follow the feast day that it falls on or be related to the unit of work that the class is currently covering. Participation in Masses is seen as an opportunity to develop the children’s understanding of the Eucharist and a response to the Religious Education Unit that has been studied.
The whole school will gather to celebrate the Eucharist together at least once a term. Year 3-7 children will celebrate the sacrament of Reconciliation at least once per year depending on the availability of the parish priest. Parents are encouraged to attend any Masses or Liturgies held in the school and all will be advertised via the school newsletter, Concern, and the Term Planner. Each classroom has a prayer/focus centre. Prayers in the afternoon and morning are part of all class daily routines.
We place high value on effective communication between home and school. There are a variety of ways we do this as can be seen below:
School to Parents
- Weekly Newsletter (Wednesdays)
- Term Planner (issued at the commencement of each term)
- Occasional news bulletins.
Teacher to Parent
- Permission notes for excursions and camps
- Class Summaries informing parents about class activities and Learning Area content.
- Homework diary where relevant.
- Teacher parent/meetings held at the beginning of Term One.
- Parent/teacher interviews held at the beginning of Term Two (Three Way Conferences) and if necessary at other times.
Parents wishing to discuss children’s problems or progress should make an appointment with the teacher first. This can be arranged by sending a note to the class teacher requesting a time to be organised that is convenient to both parties, or by calling the School Office.
Parents are welcome to contact the Principal to discuss any school matters. However, classroom related issues are best discussed with teachers first, because invariably, solutions to difficulties are found there.
An emergency evacuation policy exists which details procedures and responsibilities should the need arise for students, staff, parents and visitors to be evacuated from the school buildings and/or the school site. Emergency drills are practiced at least twice per year. All visitors, including parent volunteers, are required to sign the Visitors’ Book at the School Office and also again, when leaving the School.
Excursions and Camps
Parents are notified, in writing, regarding each excursion and written permission to participate is requested. Excursions and camps are aimed at enriching the work in the classroom, increasing general knowledge, developing an appreciation of our country, socially enjoying each other's company and encouraging class spirit.
Generally the children will have an opportunity to participate in a school camp in Year Six. The needs of the class and experience of the teacher will be taken into consideration when plans are formulated. Each camp will provide its own distinct ethos, thereby ensuring variety and a broad range of experiences. Children will be supervised at all times. The ratio of teachers to students will be determined by the type of activities being conducted on camp. All parents are required to complete the necessary excursion/camp forms before their child is permitted to participate. Parents will be notified, either by letter or meeting, as to camp plans and procedures, and are encouraged to contact teachers concerning any problems. Parental involvement on excursions is welcomed. Parents require a “Working with Children Check Card” to participate in any overnight Camp experiences.
First Aid Procedures
Staff members are trained to a level of proficiency in First Aid. The school will support and fund further training when necessary. However, those who are trained are there to advise and not necessarily to attend to all injuries.
St Patrick’s School’s children are not to share food items at any times, due to food intolerances and allergies. Parents are asked to reinforce this message at home. At recess all students are responsible for the cleanliness of the school and foodstuff, papers, etc., must be placed in the bins, and recycling / composting buckets as appropriate that are provided.
Lunch is consumed between 12.30 p.m. - 12.45 p.m. in the Covered Area. Teachers will supervise the cleanliness of the immediate area. Students will not be dismissed until their eating area is clean. All children must have a water bottle and piece of fruit for the Crunch and Sip break that is scheduled each afternoon.
Chewing gum/bubble gum and cool drink is not permitted at school at any time.
In cases of infectious disease, a doctor's advice regarding absence from school is to be followed. A doctor's certificate may be requested for serious illness necessitating long absences from school. If a child becomes sick or has a serious accident at school, parents will be notified by telephone. If parents are unable to be contacted, then staff on the authority of the Principal will take the necessary action as specified on the child's record card.
If your child requires medication during the school day please inform the class teacher, and collect and complete a Medication Request Form from the school office. Medication should always be left with teachers for safe-keeping. A staff member will then administer the medicine. However, the administration of Ventolin via nebulisers, etc., drugs via syringes and other complicated procedures must remain the responsibility of parents.
Serious medical conditions should be brought to the attention of the school and an Action Plan created to cover all eventualities. Parents are asked to check their child’s hair for head lice or eggs on a weekly basis. Treatment is available from the chemist and should commence as soon as the infestation is discovered. The school should also be informed and children kept at home until 24 hours after treatment.
We require the following Exclusion notice to be observed in cases of infectious diseases. Please keep this - it could save a telephone call later:
- Chicken Pox, Mumps: Exclude until completely recovered, or until at least 5 days after the eruption appears. Children should return when scabs are dry.
- Measles/Rubella (German Measles): Until a Medical Certificate is produced or 7 days from onset of rash. (4 days Rubella).
- Whooping Cough: Medical Certificate or 2 weeks from onset, or for 5 days after starting antibiotics. In any case not before ‘whoop’ has ceased.
- Impetigo (School Sores): Exclusion for 24 hours after treatment commenced and sores covered.
- Ringworm: Until Medical Certificate is produced stating that treatment has been carried out or 24 hours after treatment has commenced.
- Scabies: Until Medical Certificate is produced stating that treatment has been carried out or 24 hours after treatment has commenced.
- Conjunctivitis: Until discharge from eyes has ceased or 3 days after beginning antibiotic treatment.
- Influenza: Exclude until completely recovered.
- Head Lice: Exclude until 24 hours after treatment has commenced.
Medication Request Form
Medication request forms can be obtained from the school office and need to be completed and signed before any medication can be administered during the day. When leaving medication at school please make sure that it is clearly marked with your child’s name and class. All medication along with the request form should be handed either to the class teacher or left at the front office. For safety reasons, no medication should be kept in your child’s bag or desk.
The overall aim of assigning homework is to produce higher levels of student achievement. The purposes of homework are to:
- Revise and reinforce class content;
- Develop responsible home study habits;
- Provide opportunities to complete unfinished class work in accordance with time frame;
- Provide further opportunities for teachers’ evaluation; and
- Keep parents informed of the classroom content taught and their child’s progress.
Homework is an aspect of school that encourages children to take responsibility for their own learning, to make decisions and accept consequences. Homework provides children with opportunities to become more independent, successful students. Homework should therefore, be treated by the child, parent and teacher as a valued and integral part of the learning process.
We believe that homework is a purposeful out-of-class learning experience, and, therefore:
- the task is clearly defined to the child by the teacher;
- the homework task is relevant to the current classroom content; Colouring in or “busy work” is deemed to be an appropriate homework task.
- the task is at a level appropriate for the child, so that he/she can be expected to undertake it with minimal assistance from parents or others; (this is not to say that homework, on some occasions, cannot be a co-operative strategy). It is stressed that children need to complete the task(s) set. Teachers will monitor student completion of homework and parents are asked to encourage children to complete homework.
- The task is not dependent on resources to which a child would not normally have access to at home.
The following is an APPROXIMATE guide to the time allocated on a daily (Monday – Thursday) basis for a child in each section of the school. An emphasis is placed on reading, spelling and tables practice.
|Junior Primary (Years 1, 2)||Up to 15 minutes for written and oral work.|
|Middle Primary (Years 3, 4, 5)||Up to 30 minutes for written work.|
|Upper Primary (Years 6, 7)||30-45 minutes for written work.|
Individual teachers will work within the above APPROXIMATE homework time allocations. Some nights may not comply with above homework time allocation guidelines, however, on average the above guideline times will be adhered to. Teachers will attempt to give children a few nights to complete homework so children can apportion time required. (e.g. contract package) Years 1-7 Classes use homework diaries as an aid to assist parents in encouraging children to complete homework. These must be signed by parents every night.
Where there is a legitimate excuse for homework being incomplete, parents are asked to forward a note. Teachers may negotiate homework tasks with their children to allow for the completion of certain other skills. e.g. cooking, crossword puzzles, research or games etc. over the week.
Homework assignments need to be clear, relevant and purposeful. Concepts and tasks should be treated and developed in the classroom before being assigned as homework. This allows the child to undertake and complete the homework confidently and independently. Homework activities may include some reading, revision of previous work, practice in a particular process, advance preparation for new topics, completion of unfinished class work or research based activities.
Children should receive feedback from teachers as soon as possible after completing the homework. The amount of time set for homework should not be over-long. Relaxation and activities outside of school are important aspects of the child's total development and their value should not be underestimated.
The parents' role in their children's homework should be one of support. Maintaining a positive attitude and encouraging the child to work independently are important aspects of that support. Initially parents may need to help with general organisation and keeping to a schedule. Parents also need to see that the child has a comfortable well-lit and quiet place to work.
Parents are not expected to correct their child's work as the information gained from the child's efforts is important for re-teaching or future planning by the teacher. This does not preclude a parent from advising or instructing their child at their own discretion. They must be careful, however, not to mask any serious conceptual difficulties the child may be experiencing.
The school recognises the increasing pressures of family life and the demands on parents' time. For this reason, homework schedules (see above) are to be closely observed and the homework policy reviewed in relation to rapidly changing lifestyles. Parents are asked to inform teachers of reasons for homework not being completed. If a reasonable attempt has been made but the work is not finished, parents are asked to inform teachers that genuine commitment has been shown to the completion of set tasks.
All students are covered by a comprehensive world-wide 365 day, 24 hour disability / accident insurance policy from Catholic Church Insurances. A flyer from CCI is distributed to parents annually detailing claimable items. Due to the large number of students, we are able to offer this policy at a greatly reduced rate which is charged on the Schedule of Fees A "Personal Accident for Voluntary Workers" insurance covers parents and friends who come to the school by invitation to assist in school initiated projects. Such persons might be those who assist with: working bees, school fetes, excursions, etc.
The school also holds a Public Liability policy, along with Buildings and Contents policies.
Inevitably, children leave or misplace items of clothing. Parents are urged to ensure all items are clearly labelled with child’s surname and class, as this will allow items to be returned as soon as they are found.
At the beginning of Term One, an Annual / Term statement is issued. Thereafter, statements are issued per term. Fees are payable by the date specified on the invoice issued to families and can be paid by cheque, cash, direct debit, B-Pay or Eftpos. The School does not take American Express or Diners Card.
The fees structure comprises the following:
Tuition fees (each child)
Building Levy (per family)
Amenities fee (each child)
P & F Levy (per family)
Insurance Levy (per child)
Excursions (as organised by class teacher, invoiced by and payable at the School Office)
The School Board determines the school fees on an annual basis. Parents can expect an increase each year in line with the CPI (Consumer Price Index). The School Board operates within the guidelines set by the Catholic Education Office.
Parents should be reminded to detail clearly contents of money envelopes, and children should be encouraged to hand in money on arrival at school. Please endeavour to send in correct money when paying cash.
Parents are welcome in the school and are encouraged to help out in classes. Many teachers are very keen to enlist the support of parents to help with small group work, photocopying, sport, etc. There are a number of other ways in which parents can help out, including attending working bees, helping in the school canteen, library roster etc.
The P & F Association holds a number of functions during the year and invariably there are a lot of jobs to be done to see these through to a successful conclusion. Your help and contributions would always be greatly appreciated.
Parents and Friends' Association
The P & F Association is an integral part of the school's operation. Participation in the activities ofthe P & F Association is an opportunity for parents to show their commitment to their own school as well as to the whole system of Catholic Education in W.A.
The P & F Association, as well as assisting in the provision of material needs for the school, can be a valuable means of co-ordinating the spiritual and educational forces of the home and school. The P & F Association is affiliated with the P & F Federation of WA which represents local associations at a state and national level, and approaches governments and educational authorities on their behalf.
Meetings are held on a monthly basis (third Monday of every month during school term) and all families are encouraged to attend. The P & F and School Board hold their Annual General Meetings at an annual School Community Meeting in November.
Please exercise patience, skill and tolerance when using the car park. Arrows have been painted in the carpark. Please follow these to help keep a smooth flow to the traffic. Do not park in the yellow Kiss and Drive Zone on Annie St, as this is a drop off zone only. Do not park in the circular drive-through of the church and do not park in the bus bays on Avon and Beaufort Streets. Your co-operation with this is greatly appreciated.
If toys, games, etc., are brought to school they may be shown for news but not used at any other time. Children are discouraged from bringing these to school. The school does not accept responsibility for damage or loss of any personal possessions of students. Students’ mobile phones must be handed into the office each morning before school and collected at 3.15pm.
Each year parents are given the opportunity to acquire class, family and individual photographs. Parents will be notified of the date when it becomes available.
Physical Education and Sport
Physical Education is a compulsory part of our school curriculum and all children are expected to participate in the activities unless prevented from doing so for medical reasons, and then a note is required. The children are expected to wear school sports uniform during physical education and sport periods.
PP – Year 7: These classes have one Physical Education lesson per week. The programme consists of a whole range of large and small motor skills - running, walking, skipping, leaping, hopping, jumping, etc. A wide range of ball handling skills are taught. Use of beanbags, balls, hoops, ropes, etc., are introduced as well as team games.
Duration of the lessons:
Junior Primary 50 minutes
Middle & Upper 50 minutes
Children in Years 1 - 7 are taught the skills of games such as hockey, soccer, netball, basketball, softball, football, cricket, and athletics. Faction Athletics, Cross Country and Swimming Carnivals are organised each year. Interschool Carnivals follow these Faction events, for selected competitors. Interm Swimming lessons are usually conducted in Term One or late in Term Four. Other events / clinics may be arranged from time to time.
Catholic children in Year Three are eligible for reception of Penance (First Reconciliation). Following this, Catholic children are eligible to receive the Eucharist (First Communion) in Year Four. Catholic children in Year Seven are eligible to receive Confirmation. Parents are an integral part of this preparation and are encouraged to assist the class teacher in any way they can. Parent information sessions are held in collaboration with the Parish, as part of the preparation for each sacrament and parents are required to attend.
Safe School Policy
Creating a safe and supportive school environment where the rights of all members of the St Patrick’s School community are respected, underpins the philosophy of the Safe School. The development of appropriate and acceptable behaviour is the responsibility of students, staff and parents.
The full Student Management and Anti Bullying policies are available to parents on request from the school.
This policy provides a comprehensive whole school response to behaviour management to ensure all children, parents and staff feel respected, safe and valued. It is promoted through formal and informal curriculum, teaching and learning, organisation, ethos and school-home community links. Parents should be aware of and support the following school rules to their children:
Out of Class Rules
Respect others Speak nicely to others. Include everyone when playing. Keep hands and feet to yourself. Speak truthfully about others.
Respect property Only take what is yours. Take care of other people’s property. Put things back in the correct place. Look after and return sports equipment.
Always use your manners Always speak to others in a polite and friendly tone. Please and thank you to all.
Move safely around the School. Always walk on paved areas, verandahs and around corners. Respect the environment and use the footpaths. Let others through doorways first.
Always wear the correct school Uniform. Tuck in shirts, only one pair of plain earrings and watch. Correct socks. No make-up/ coloured nail-polish. Full winter summer or sport uniform. Hats to be worn during outdoor times during Terms One and Four.
In Class Rules
Follow directions Listen to the teacher. Ask questions if you are not sure. Ask for permission to leave the room. Respect others. Speak politely and use good manners. Wait for your turn to speak. No physical, verbal or emotional bullying.
Respect property. Take care of other people’s property. Return borrowed items in same condition. Keep desks and chairs clean. Look after and return sports equipment. Look after computers.
Think Safety! Move around the room carefully. Only ever pass objects to others. Only enter the room when a teacher is present.
Bullying occurs when somebody who is less powerful than another person or group is deliberately and (typically) repeatedly hurt without in anyway deserving that treatment. At St Patrick’s School we believe that every student has a right to feel safe; therefore bullying will not be tolerated. St Patrick’s School takes a proactive approach to bullying and includes evidencebased anti-bullying materials and support strategies as part of the whole school program. Parents are encouraged at all times to communicate to the school any incidents of bullying. Support materials and detailed information about the interventions strategies are available to parents on request at the School Office.
The school faction system is organised to promote team spirit, pride and loyalty through the various sporting and fundraising activities undertaken. The names of the factions are: Prendiville (Red), McLeod(Green) Gibney (Gold).
The services of a psychologist can be accessed through the Non- Government Schools’ Psychology Service (NGSPS) to assist students, parents and staff to optimise student learning and development. Psychologists can provide individual assistance for a student across a diverse range of issues including learning, behaviour, social and/or emotional difficulties, as well as work with small groups or a whole class to address issues that may arise. The psychologist also contributes to the development and implementation of relevant policies and programmes in the school.
Teachers who are concerned about a student can refer them to the psychologist who would then organise a meeting with parents. The psychologist must obtain written parental consent before providing any assistance for a student. Parents who are concerned about their child are encouraged to speak with the relevant teacher about their concerns which may then result in a referral to the psychologist. In some cases, consultation with the psychologist may result in the recommendation of support through a suitable external agency – details on the range of available support in the local area can be provided by the psychologist.
Parents are asked to support the school by encouraging children to develop a sense of responsibility towards their school and each other, and to show respect and friendship by their manner and dress. Children are expected to greet visitors to the school politely and cheerfully welcome them to the school.
Secondary Schools in our district are: St Joseph’s College in Albany and Katanning Senior High School.
Records are compiled for each child in the school. Records comprise:
- Copies of reports.
- Psychologists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Pathologists, etc.
- Specific test results.
- Standardised tests.
- Any other necessary correspondence from parents, etc.
Children are fully supervised between 8.30am and 3.30pm. Parents should ensure they do not leave children on the school grounds outside these hours. Teachers who are busy in their rooms before / after school cannot be expected to take responsibility for unattended children outside of these hours.
All children must be dropped off/picked up via the car park or the Annie St entrance. At the end of school, children are to wait in the Covered Area, or if they are junior children, must wait for collection from the Years One and Two classrooms. Students remain seated until collected by a parent, they are not to walk through the car-park unattended. Children must not play in the car park.
Students are supervised while eating their lunches and while they are at play during morning and lunch recesses and a teacher supervises in the areas of the car park and bus stops. Children using the school buses must obey the bus rules (see point 12.0) and wait quietly at the bus stops. A Bus Duty teacher assists children when catching buses in the afternoon. Children unaccompanied by parents must travel directly between home and school. It is of paramount importance that children be made to realise that they should never accept lifts from strangers.
Verandahs and eating areas Teachers and students are responsible for keeping their own areas tidy and free from litter. Food and drink is only consumed in designated areas. Children are encouraged to be environmentally conscious by participating in, e.g., litter drives, tidying up, recycling etc.
Classrooms Teachers and students are responsible for the general appearance and tidiness of their classrooms. Floors will be left free of litter and chairs will be stacked to facilitate cleaning.
General Purpose areas Classes using areas are to leave them neat and free from litter before leaving. Equipment will be returned and placed neatly in storage areas after use. The use of school equipment (e.g., computers, sports gear) is only permitted under strict supervision, during school.
School property and equipment All class texts are to be cared for. Parents will be charged for the cost of any damaged or lost texts. Any damage to school property should be reported. Depending on the cause and extent of any wilful damage or damage resulting from the breaking of school rules to any school property, a contribution towards the repair or replacement may be requested.
Wearing of the school uniform is compulsory at school and when travelling to and from school. Shirts are to be tucked in and shoes kept cleaned and in good order. Hair must be neat and styled in a manner in keeping with primary school standards.