We have been attempting to get something done about our antiquated sewerage system over the past year. Finally we have been able to gain an assurance from the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development that work will commence in the next week and continue over the holidays. A recent overflow near the Art Room had us very worried and we had to make sure that something was done very quickly to maintain the system and get repairs done immediately. The North Eastern Victoria Region has been most supportive and the money will be coming for a complete replacement of the system with the necessary three phase power installed to make sure it keeps running efficiently. If you see works being carried out over the holidays you will know what is going on. The system has been here for a long time and as the school has grown it has not been able to keep pace with the increased usuage. All will be replaced and in line with the latest regulations and in keeping with our philosophy of being a green and sustainable school.
Kunshan Visitors Update
Today our Kunshan visitors left for Sydney where they will have a short stay before returning to China. They have had an amazing experience visiting our school and left after making many new Australian friends. I want to thank those families who had students to homestay with them as we could not have hosted such a successful visit without the input from our families. Both staff and student families were involved and I know it was an intense experience and very exhausting.
To have strangers who don't speak the same language in your home for seven days and nights is a huge task and every family has made these students feel so welcome and contributed to an amazing experience for these young people. Over the weekend they were taken to so many wonderful places. I have heard about visits to Healesville, Puffing Billy, Southbank, Victoria Market, Bowling, Pizza restaurants, Westfield Shoppingtown, Football games, Sporting Activities and many other activites to make them feel special and to give them an aussie experience.
They attended an official welcome from the Minister for Education Martin Dixon at the Zoo on Friday and then spent the rest of the day at the Zoo in the rain. They have been in our classes and spent time with all of our students. Yesterday we had a farewell in the hall and were treated to a dancing recital, 2 piano performances (Tchaikovsky and Beethoven) and a rendition of 'Kookaburra Sits in the Old Gum Tree' which they learned before leaving China. We also gave some wonderful performances arranged by Luc with the band (Yum drums, Jayden guitar,Ruby vocals, Justin guitar, Luc keyboard) solos by Zoe and Samantha and dancing by Sha'uri. I noticed that the students from China were very keen to take a lot of photos and videos so our performances were very well received.
Our school is very different to Kunshan Loujiang Experimental School. They have 1600 students and over 120 teachers. That is not taking into account all the support staff and cooks who provide a cooked lunch daily for everyone. The resources they have are outstanding and no expense is spared to have everything the teachers and students need for learning and teaching. It is a very different story from us who have to prioritise our spending and make sure we have enough money to fund our utilities while providing the resources for teachers to use in classes. A small group of our teaching staff will be visiting them again in the September holidays so we will renew our friendship with our Kunshan sister school. All the students at Sherbrooke have been told by the Principal of Loujiang Experimental School that they have a school in China that is their school that they can attend any time. It would be a big shock for our students as they start at 7:00am and finish at 5:00pm. However, if any of your children think they might be up for it, let me know.
The beautiful gifts presented to us are now on display in the foyer in the cabinet. Please make sure you take the time to come and look at them next time you are in the school. There is also a photo album with amazing photos of their school.
We will look forward to keeping in touch with our new friends.
Over the last month, students at sherbrooke have been creating dragonfly lanterns for the Annual Belgrave Lantern Parade. The night was a success with many primary students participating. The lanterns looked great and we look forward to a greater participation from students next year.
Students are beginning to collect examples of work for them to use in their round tables for this year. This is a very successful method of demonstrating a particular skill they have mastered and is an eagerly awaited event by those parents who have previously participated. This is a long process which completes in Term three every year. For those new parents who have not been involved before it will be a wonderful experience to witness your child teaching a skill and demonstrating their competence in a particular area.
WORKING BEE THIS FRIDAY
The Working Bee for today has been cancelled due to inclement weather.
The Swamp is of course, very wet and muddy and would not be a pleasant place to work this afternoon. Another date will be scheduled.
WATCH THIS SPACE!
First term is short this year because of the placement of Easter.
Please put these term dates in your diary.
Term 1: Thursday 31/1/13 - Thursday 28/3/13
Term 2: Monday 15/4/13 - Friday 28/6/13
Term 3: Monday 15/7/13 - Friday 20/9/13
Term 4: Monday 7/10/13 - Friday 20/12/13
Swimming Carnival Tuesday 5th March
As a school on the register for being in a high fire danger zone I am required to have a very specific and up to date plan for managing the school population during a bushfire threat. That plan is available at the school and is regularly updated by me and approved at Regional Level. Our Safer Place (Art Studio) was upgraded last year and is now compliant with the code requirements. This is our evacuation point for unexpected events. Should a Code Red Day be declared the school would be closed to all students and staff included. You would be given ample notice prior to this happening.
As with all Victorian public schools we often rely on the generosity of volunteers to help us run smoothly. At the moment we are looking for enthusiastic and reliable people to assist us in the canteen to help to provide nutritious food to our students. Even if you could just help out for one lunch time per week this would be a great help to us.If you are willing and able please contact Anne Broadribb for further details.
To see all newsletters for 2012 - 2013
Please Visit the Newsletters page under 'About Us' or click the link here: Newsletters.
Grounds & Building News:
We have several working bees during the year and these are usually held once per term. We are always grateful for the hard work done by our supporters at these events and it helps us to keep our grounds looking tidy and gets those little jobs completed that are always needing to be done around the place. We are very happy to have a new sheep shelter to keep the sheep dry prior to shearing time and this was done by one of our parents, Ben Harris who did a wonderful job with some help from students.
Dates will be set in the near future so please watch out for them.
A list outlining the work planned for the given day will be posted closer to the date.
School Social Events
The School Council will be planning events to enable parents to meet and talk with other parents. There will be fundraising activities and working bees throughout the year so please keep checking the website and the newsletter for events as they come up.
We frequently get the opportunity to have a sausage sizzle in Ferntree Gully at the Woolworths store. We would be very pleased if we could have some volunteers for the day. If you are willing to turn a few sausages for an hour or so when we have our next (date tba) please leave your name with the office or your child's classroom teacher. It is always fun and gives us just a little extra to spend on resources for the students. Last year we had one on a very windy day and it was very funny as we needed many arms to hold onto all the bits that were trying to blow away.
A very, very big thank you to all families that have paid their school fees. We really appreciate your promptness! School fees are a big part of providing the essential resources we need to deliver the curriculum to your children. We factor these fees into our budget every term.
Also it is vitally important that secondary students have the texts requested on the book list so they are not disadvantaged in any way.
Please see us at the office if you need help with school fees. It is very easy to arrange payments over a period of time.
Dallas, our new Guide Dog Puppy is a yellow Labrador. Overcoming some serious health issues she came to us when she was 16 weeks. She has settled in very well. She is keeping us all on our toes. Dallas is a cheeky puppy who loves to get everyone’s’ attention. As of yet she has not yet mastered going up the front open stairs. She is starting to wear her jacket around school and she
is learning to walk along busier roads.
Hector went in for assessment on the
8th of April, passing with caution. However he began to show signs of not coping with the tasks he was set. He has since been re-classified as a pet and sold to a family living in the Northern Suburbs. His new owners have asked us to send some puppy photos.
Absence Notification System.
Last year we intorduced a new SMS absence notification to parents/guardians advising when a student has been marked as an unexplained absence. Parents are reminded that school commences at 9:00am every day and if their child is late or does not attend morning meeting they will be marked absent and you will get a text message informing you that your child was not seen in the hall.Students who are late must sign in at the office to avoid unneccessary messages to parents. For more information please click here: SMS Notification System.
Working Bee Thankyou
A very big thankyou goes out to all those wonderful parents and children who worked at the school for fridays working bee. An enormous amount of work was completed and it is great to see our buildings looking so clean after a good high pressure cleaning. The weather was kind to us after being so threatening during the day and we were able to get a couple of hours of concentrated work done before dark.
Well done and a heartfelt thankyou to all who participated.