Irymple Primary School
Irymple Primary Finalist in School Excellence Awards
Irymple Primary School has been nominated as one of 4 schools to reach the State Finals of the ‘School Excellence Awards ‘ for the State of Victoria under the category of – ‘Outstanding Inclusive Education’. The winner will be announced in late October in Melbourne with finalists from each category present.
As a school we have undertaken a proud five-year journey that has significantly reduced the barriers to learning for its students with additional needs.
Inclusive practice and culture is at the core of our school’s commitment to deliver an equitable and positive learning climate for every student.
The school has focused on providing a supportive setting which is responsive to student's backgrounds, interests and skills. We have been proactive in adapting its culture, policies and practices to accommodate students with additional needs so that they feel safe and valued at all times.
An intensive period of research and professional development has enabled our staff to design and deliver high-impact inclusive teaching and learning strategies.
Language and Literacy programs have been a key focus, as our school recognises the inherent value of communication skills in student self-esteem and inclusive outcomes.
We have been able to forge strong networks with community agencies in order to provide vital support where complex student needs are identified.
A whole-school vision has encompassed every aspect of school life; to deliver the physical, teaching and social supports needed for our school to deliver a positive learning experience for every student.
Congratulations to every staff member at our great school!
NAPLAN results - Outstanding
We have now had a chance to analyse our 2018 NAPLAN results in detail as a part of our normal School Review. We have a really pleasing range of results across the spectrum, but we as a school have truly received some excellent individual student results.
It is always so abundantly clear that the children who:
- Have caring and dedicated teachers
- Attend school each day
- Work hard throughout the year,
- Participate in every day’s academic and social activities,
- Read daily,
- Complete weekly Homework tasks and
- Have unwavering parent support
- do extremely well on these external tests that match individual performances to those of the same age children across the state of Victoria and Australia. Generally the results very accurately reflect the children’s capabilities under test conditions and on unseen tasks without the opportunity for teacher assistance.
It is just one more set of data that we use in the whole assessment process, but it is clearly a great testament to the strong teaching and learning that takes place at this school, that so many of our students can individually match or better the results of children across the state. Well done to all the students in Years 3 and 5, their parents and their teachers since Prep.
Thank you to members of the Parents’ Club, for coming in to school each week on Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons, to assist parents with the purchasing of the new school uniform items. We are happy that so many children have purchased hats and are wearing them. From 1st September we are expected as a SUN SMART accredited school to enforce the wearing of hats.
ICAS Results – Still awaiting the results
Our ICAS results are usually delivered by stage of the term, but as yet they have not been received. The International Competitions and Assessments for Schools (ICAS) are independent skills-based assessments with a competition element. Commonly referred to as the UNSW tests, ICAS is unique, being the most comprehensive generally available suite of academic assessments and school tests for Primary and Secondary school students.
Over one million student entries are accepted from over 6,300 schools in Australia and New Zealand annually. In addition, students from over 20 countries including Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Singapore, South Africa and the USA participate in ICAS each year.
Participation is a privilege and results that are given credits and distinctions place students with the tops students in Australia and beyond.
Computer Selections for 2019
Please be on the lookout for the note regarding Year 2 to 6 preferences for 2019. Purchased computers will be imaged with all the latest school software and will remain under strict DET usage agreements. At the end of the period they will be re-imaged with Microsoft Windows and remain the property of the purchasing family.
We are attempting to give every student the access and learning opportunities that we are required to offer for preparation for 21st century learning. In addition to this we are maintaining sets of iPads for use in the junior units with the many teaching and learning applications that are available. If you have any questions please see Mrs Baird or Mr Thompson as we would be happy to assist any families.
There are still at least 30 or more winter tops in the lost property area. Please come and have a look if your child has lost any items as many of the long sleeve tops appear to be near new. There are also a few lunch boxes and drink bottles that someone must own.
Technology at Home Advice
With the use of netbooks, computers and smart phones at home increasing, we often get asked for advice on safe use of technology at home. Here are a few tips;
- Set rules for internet use including time limits online.
- Expect your child to always use technology out in the open. They will think twice about browsing inappropriate websites.
- Talk to your child about what age appropriate and inappropriate websites are.
- Expect your child to treat others online how they would like to be treated.
- Stay aware of technology risks by visiting www.cybersmart.gov.au
- Set good examples with your own technology use.
Parents can encourage positive use of technology by;
- Spending time exploring the internet with your child to understand how they are using it.
- Talk to your child about the new skills they are learning on computers and the internet.
- Maintain good communication with your child and an active interest in their life.
- Encourage a balance of technology use and physical activity.
We will continue to include regular technology tips in future newsletters!
We are asking all parents to be extremely vigilant if their children are playing the following two games:
- Five Nights at Freddy's
They are both highly addictive games and should not be being played by children of primary school age according the game creators who have given an Age rating of 12+. We are having a number of students having difficulty with leaving the gaming issues between players at home. One game (Five Nights at Freddy's) is a frightening game for primary aged children. In addition to the risk of addiction is the lack of ability and time sleeping that occurs when gaming is daily and for hours on end. Some children as a result of gaming are so overtired that they are unable to make the best learning and friendship decisions at school.
Fathers’ Day Stall
Thank you to all the volunteers from the Parents’ Club for purchasing the extensive selection of goods to sell to the children. We also thank all the volunteers for assisting on the stall on Friday. The wide selection gave all children something that appealed to them to give to their Dad, a grandparent, uncle or special friend. Some had great difficulty deciding what to buy, others seemed to need a little more time for the selection. As we have a small number of children that attend our school who do not have a dad to celebrate with on this day we have encouraged them to think about and acknowledge any significant other male in their life like a grandfather, uncle or special family friend. We hope that all families shared a wonderful memory or experience with a significant male in their family on Sunday.
Years 3 to 6 Netbook Program for 2019
If you have a student in Years 2 to 5 at present please ensure that you have read the note sent home last week regarding the Netbook program for 2019 and beyond. The options are explained in detail. We have to work towards a sustainable provision of ICT with one to one access as we now operate in a user pay model as do Primary Schools across the State. We already have one of the best school Netbook programs in Sunraysia and this moves us to the most effective level of usage for all students.
Swan Hill and Roses’ Gap Camps
Both camps are coming up and we wish the staff, students and parent helpers all the very best for the time they are away.
Staff Car Park
The staff car park is not to be used for parent pick-ups as it is an unsupervised area and parents are calling children to cars that are pulled up and waiting for children. Only DHHS carers or Out of Home Carers have permission to pull into the car park as they need to pick up quickly and often move on to another school with multiple children in their care. Most people always park in the designated areas and we are very grateful for this as they are in supervised areas and also monitored by security cameras. Please do not park on the corner coming into the drop off zone as the bus lines have made a complaint as they cannot get around the corner safely and are afraid of sideswiping a car.
After School Play
It is important that all children have a clear place to be after school. Racing around unsupervised is not one of the options. One student was seriously injured on Friday due to a much bigger student running into them and having a full on head clash. The only options are:
- Walk straight to a parent/carer car
- Catch the bus to Irymple Secondary College
- Wait with the teacher for the later bus in the GP room
- Wait for a parent who is late outside the GP room and sitting down.
5 staff are on duty and they cannot supervise unsupervised children and assist students with the front gate exits, cars and crossings. We ask that parents assist us with this as the 15 minutes after school is not a designated playtime.
Thank you to Mr Alan Baker and Mrs Jayne McNerney for supervising the children on at the Mini Olympics on Wednesday.
Congratulations to all the children who attended. A number of students have achieved a level where they will represent the Region in Bendigo early next term.
- Morgan Anderson - Hurdles 1st, Triple Jump 1st
- Charlie Carr – 200m 3rd in heat
- Shelby Talent – Triple Jump 5th, Long Jump 9th
- Chloe Williams – 100m 3rd, Long Jump 6th
- Sofia Bakogianis - 1500m placing unknown
- Jeff Mendoza – 100m 3rd
- Taylor Saxby – High Jump 3rd, Long Jump 2nd
- Estelle Floramo – High Jump 2nd, 200m 1st
- Joshua Furey – 800m 1st, 1500m 3rd
- Jordan McKenzie – Discus 5th
- Evie Oldham – Triple Jump 5th, 100m placing unknown
- Sienna Primarano – 800m 5th
- Cobey Teague – 200m placing unknown, 1500m 3rd
- Christopher Panaretos – Discus 6th
- Mitchell McClure – Triple Jump 4th, 100m 4th in heat
- Gillian Rakua – Discus 4th
- Charlie Cooper – Hurdles placing unknown, Long Jump 4th
- Anna Temoana – Shot Put 3rd
The students effort and behaviour on the day was outstanding.
Congratulations to the staff and students on their results. We have received some outstanding results that parents and students should be very proud of.
Results were sent home with the students on Tuesday afternoon. Again we have exceeded the results of like schools across the State in Literacy and Numeracy. Our students in the top two bands of Literacy and Numeracy have achieved some outstanding results and have matched or bettered State results at Year 3 and Year 5.
Thank you to all the children that participated in The Beat on Wednesday night. They put in an amazing performance and it was a real credit to their time in the choir. A big thank you to the parents that assisted backstage as well as the guiding teachers Mrs Webb and Ms Hawkes. It was great to see our return to this local musical event.
Sun Smart Reminder
As from 1st September Government Schools are to follow Sun-smart recommendations and require all students to wear hats during all outdoor activities that involve exposure to the sun. To ensure a smooth transition back to hats please check that names are clearly visible on all hats as some tend to fade over time. Children are advised it they have sport on a particular day to have their own tube of sunscreen to apply as required for this time. From day 1 next term, hats are not only recommended, but compulsory.
We have had a few sick children over the past two weeks with extremely heavy colds and in some cases vomiting as well. We can only ask parents to please keep children home for at least 24 hours after vomiting has ceased. It is not fair to children or the staff and their small children for the rules regarding transmission to be disregarded. Good hygiene is critical to breaking the chain of transmission. Every year at this time we get a spike and we continue to remind the children about washing hands thoroughly with soap.
Once again a big thank you to all the parents that attended sports day last Thursday 23rd August and all the parents that also supported the School Canteen by buying a snack or lunch on the day. We are very grateful to a small group of parents past and present that assisted to cover the increased patronage on the day. It is traditionally one of our best canteen sales days for the year. Thank you to Mr Gregor Allan and the Year 10 Out-door Education students from Irymple Secondary College also, as they did a fantastic job in supporting us on the day. Their assistance on the day made it a special day for all the children and parents watching. We were lucky to have good weather and were really pleased with the fact that so many parents were able to make it for part of the day or for the whole day. Thank you to Mr Pettit who co-ordinated much of the day in advance and for Mr Baker for assuming this role in his absence due to the birth of his son Oliver. With 6 staff away on the day wea are very grateful to all the Casual Relief Teachers that filled the spots with such enthusiasm. A really enjoyable day!
Prep (Foundation) Enrolment Reminder and New Students
Please refer any families that you know of who are intending to enrol here to hand in the forms as soon as possible. Please assist us with this matter if you have a younger sibling to attend as we are in the process of estimating staffing for next year and it is very difficult if numbers are not finalised.
A reminder to our parents of Grade 3 & 4 that camp payments need to be finalised when possible and Grade 2 money for their Excursion and Sleep Over along with permission notes to be paid and returned as soon as possible.
Footy Colours Day
Footy Colours Day will be on the Last Day of Term being 21st September. Students are encouraged to come school in their favourite footy team colours.
The Department of Education and Training (DET) Parent opinion survey has now closed. Thank you to all the parents that assisted us by completing our survey.
Assistant Principal Appointment
Congratulations to Mrs Alice Baird who was appointed to the Assistant Principal position last week. We are always lucky to get many applications for our teaching and leadership positions – a testament to the strong teaching team that we already have at this school. Thank you to the panel members Mr Alan Baker (Staff representative), Mrs Michelle Thompson (School Council Representative) and Mr Andrew Ough (Senior Education Improvement Leader for the Mallee Network). As a result of Mrs Baird’s appointment we now have the ‘Learning Specialist – leading teacher position to fill as Mrs Baird previously held this role. We hope to have this position finalised by the end of Term 3.
Thank you to all the parents that joined us on the day. It was terrific that so many parents ordered a lunch to share with their children on the day as well. The effort put in by all the children was excellent. Thank you to all the staff that assisted the children with their sporting endeavours and the encouragement given to all. We have a very large number of children eligible for the Mini Olympics this year and we congratulate all the children who will be representing our school. Thank you to Mr Baker in Mr Pettit’s absence and the classroom teachers that spent the time prior to prepare the children as well as possible for the day. A great day for staff, parents and all the children. A big thank you also goes to the parents who assisted in the canteen. The presence and assistance of the Year 10 PE students from Irymple Secondary College was also very much appreciated.
Major Excursions Protocols
With major excursions coming up soon we will be briefing parents attending on the use of mobile phones and social media which comply with DET procedures. It is not allowed, for example, to take photographs of other people’s children and upload them onto Facebook or to send to parents back at home. It is also not appropriate to offer a phone for children to speak with parents during sessions and at night time. Staff will all have phones and will be responsible for these tasks in all circumstances and are aware of all the photo sharing requirements of our students. Due to custody issues and parent wishes, some children do not have their parents’ permission to be photographed or their photographs to be shared electronically. School Council has approved the statement to all parents attending School Camps back in 2015.
Thank you to all that have completed the online survey. We appreciate your time and feedback!
Attendance at School – 85% attendance or less
In Week 8 (in two weeks’ time) all parents whose children have an attendance rate of 85% or less will receive formal notification from the school. We are required to follow up all high absences, particularly those that are unexplained. This is of major concern and in the category where we may need to notify the Department of Education and Training (DET) and the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). ‘We cannot teach children who are not here’. Teachers should not also have to contend with so many catch up conversations as a result of non-genuine reasons. A day off school for shopping or a day off for a Birthday is not acceptable. We remain extremely concerned for a small number of our students.
Sections 2.1.1 and 2.1.2 of the Education and Training Reform Act 2006 state - It is the duty of the parent of a child of not less than 6 nor more than 17 years of age to enrol the child at a registered school and to ensure the child attends the school at all times when the school is open for the child's instruction. It is an offence for parent to fail to comply with this duty without a reasonable excuse.
If family circumstances prevent regular attendance our Primary Welfare Officer – Mrs Muller is available to confidentially discuss any issues and help to achieve regular attendance and re-engage students with consistent education. Whilst this only applies to approximately 20 students at this point in the year it equates to 21 days absent if an attendance rate of 82% is recorded. This is one month of school already missed in 2018. Naturally long term illness with a Doctor's Certificate is not included in the data.
“It is not OK to be Away!” – Victorian DET
Healthy Foods for Everyone
We continue to encourage families to provide healthy foods for children in their lunchboxes. While many parents provide beautiful lunches for their children that include fresh fruit and vegetables there are still a number of children regularly eating lunch and snack foods each day that are totally pre-packed and very high in sugar, salt and fat. We continue to thank all the families that drop off fresh fruit for us to share with the children that are in need of a further snack at school. Any fresh or dried fruit is suitable and we always pass it on to the children in need of a top up. Children given quality fruit will eat it and our apple program funded by our wonderful Parent’s Club allows for no child to go without fruit if it is not available at home.
Please be aware that behaviour and language on all buses is to be exemplary at all times. Any incidences on buses can carry a penalty of being banned from bus travel and a suspension from school that may also lead to the inability to attend major camps and graduation (if a student is in Year 6). The majority of children do the right thing all the time and we are very proud of them. The ‘best behaviour’ is also the ‘safest behaviour’ on a moving vehicle!
Walking to and From School
Do you know how competent your child is walking or scooting to school each day? We often get reports of near misses involving our children.
Once again some amazing outfits experienced at our book parade on Friday morning. Thank you to Mrs Humphrey for organising the day and the new books for the staff. Beyond all the activities, it is the celebration of reading. We have high expectations across the school for reading and it really has enormous benefits. ‘Reading is a passport to success’. Sadly some students are substituting long hours on computers for reading and the replacement does not have the same benefits. Thank you to all the staff that designed such a range of interesting activities with the new shortlisted books and some old favourites.