Welcome to term 4 2021
Until a machine is developed to scan our brains and read all the information we retain, exams are a necessary evil! As our Year 12 young people start their final exams (ATAR runs from November 1 to November 19) and many others prepare for end of year exams, things can get stressful in the home environment as children begin to get anxious, doubt themselves or fear they haven’t done enough. These exam stress tips are from our website and are to help you and your child get through this time. Remember to be kind to yourself, keep things in perspective and remind your child that they are not their exam result. There are many pathways that our children can take once they finish school and a blip at exam time will soon be forgotten as they move forward.
Another great resource is Headspace - the national youth mental health foundation funded by the Australian Government. Please find here a link to anther article that may find useful in managing the stress in your household.
School Leavers Week this year runs between Monday 22 November - Thursday 25 November.
With the hard work, exam stress and 12 years of schooling coming to an end, one of the rewards for our year 12's is School Leavers. An exciting time of changing responsibility and exploring freedoms, it can also be an anxious time for parents. There are support systems available in schoolies for our kids to seek advice or ask for help should they need it and that is the fantastic Red Frog service. Red Frogs are volunteers that “act as the eyes and ears in accommodation venues and out on the streets, providing a positive peer presence” and you can arrange a visit from a Red Frog to your school leaver to talk, cook them pancakes or give them a hand to “keep their room in a liveable condition”! Here is a link to tips for parents from Red Frogs and is worth a read:
Here is their website:
Vaccination requirements for School Leavers.
There are now requirements from the Western Australian government for school leavers, staff, volunteers and the local community to have at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccination by November 22 for the Dunsborough school leavers event. Please check the government health website for any updates to this prior to the event through the link below:
Official Leavers website
Last but certainly not least, here is the official site for WA Leavers which is compiled in partnership with WA Police and has a lot of very useful and practical information including:
. Before they go: information for parents.
. Stay Safe Tips for Leavers
. Being Drug Aware
With half of all adult mental health issues emerging before a child turns 14, and only 50% of children getting mental health assistance in Australia, more help needs to be available to our children. To start addressing this the government has released a national strategy to address mental health issues in children aged 0 to 12. It is a world first for a national government to write a national strategy on the mental health and wellbeing of children for the first 12 years of their life and involve their families and communities. The strategy focuses on the four areas of Family and Community, the Service System, Education setting and Evidence and Evaluation. A two-page summary of the strategy can be read here:
as well as the full 120-page report here:
If you need to find a resource in the area of mental health, visit the Head to Health website. Head to Health is a digital mental health resource set up by the Australian Health Department and is a comprehensive coverage of apps, online programs, online forums, digital information resources and phone services. The resource list is comprehensive and has free or low-cost services and has something relevant for all ages. An example of how to use this resource is in the parent section “Chat Starter” on how to start a chat about mental health issues. My favourite suggestion is as follows:
Dance & Download
Dancing is a great way to express yourself. You, your family, Elders, friends or anyone in your household might like to pick some songs and dance. If you're in different households, a video call to dance and move is a great alternative to face to face when restrictions are tight.
I can already hear my kids rolling their eyes and groaning!
Here is the link to the parent section:
It is fast approaching Annual General Meeting season and at this time of year, some of our executives step down from their positions as President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer and new volunteers need to be found. So why volunteer?
. It is for the children. Once we have children our lives (and time!) are never the same again. We are changed for the better and they are a driving force behind a lot of things we do. We might only get paid in hugs, kisses, and fridge artwork (less if you have a teen!) but it is worth it in the end.
. Fosters a sense of community. It takes a village to raise a child and, in a world where we don’t always live with our family close by, our village becomes more diverse and often school centred.
. It is a great way to learn skills. Getting involved with the P&F is a great way to start building skills if you have been out of the workforce for a while.
. Friendraising, friendraising, friendraising. It is a great way to get to know people outside of your child’s classroom group and helps to build a school with a strong sense of community. A school with a strong sense of community is one that is caring and supportive and great to be a part of, a win-win!
. Sharing the load. If doesn't matter what time you can give to the P&F, it is still valuable and helps to share the load amongst the community – many hands make light work.
. Give something back. We never know what is around the corner and helping out when you can, contributes to the pool of helpers. This way, when someone needs help, there is plenty on offer, and you don't have to rely on the same people all the time.
. Learn new skills and confidence. There is usually help available if you are undertaking a position that is new to you. CSPWA can provide lots of help including online resources, access to the online induction or by organising a school visit from our very friendly Liaison Officer. Past members of the executive can also be a great source of information.
If you are considering joining the P&F we would strongly encourage you to go to a meeting. You don’t have to participate straight away, but it will help you to break the ice and we are sure you will be warmly welcomed. Then you can think about what role would suit you and take the plunge!
World Teachers' Day is celebrated in Australia on the last Friday of October, this year on the 29th.
If there is one thing the pandemic has taught us, it is the value of relationships. Research shows us that the student /teacher relationship has a hugely significant impact on the outcomes for children and young people. As parents we are now fully aware (if we weren't already!) of the outstanding work our teachers do in helping to bring our children to their full potential. Although here in WA we have been particularly lucky in that we have had to spend very little time in lockdown and our children have continued to benefit from face to face teaching - we are aware that our teachers have been ready to adjust to the on-line environment should the need have arisen.
Parents and carers in Catholic schools have always appreciated what teachers do in their role as educators, however it has been even more evident in the past couple of years. As with a lot of things we can take it for granted too often, however World Teachers' Day is a reminder to us as parents to extend our thanks and gratitude to those in whom we trust with the care and education of our precious children and young people. We encourage all parents to take some time on Friday 29 to acknowledge your child's teacher/s, whether it is through a whole school event, a class morning tea or a thank you email.
You will find some additional ideas in the link provided below if you are short of creative juices.
And to all the teachers out there, Catholic School Parents WA extend our warmest thanks for all you do - you are so very much appreciated.
Friday 15 October saw the annual CEWA staff breakfast, celebrating and acknowledging teachers and staff who had acheived 30 and 40 years of service. We are blessed in Catholic Education to have such a wealth of teaching experience and to retain such fantastic staff.
The Quality Catholic Education Award winners were also announced at the event. The QCE awards recognise programs and initiatives in Catholic schools across Western Australia that support the vision of providing Christ-centred, student-focused engaged learning environments. This year schools were nominated across the four categories that are informed by the four Pillars of Strategic Directions and Quality Catholic Education plus the new heritage category:
We would like to congratulate all the winners and the nominees, and we acknowledge the award winners in each category below.
The Catholic Identity category acknowledges initiatives that demonstrate contemporary models of Christ-centred leadership and focus on inspiring all in the school community to actively live the Gospel. This award will recognise an outstanding Catholic Identity project or initiative developed by a Catholic school in Western Australia (one Primary and one Secondary).
In Catholic schools across Western Australia, there are many initiatives and projects, led by dedicated individuals and teams, that demonstrate a deep commitment to providing engaged learning environments where all students are supported to discover their potential.
The Education award recognises outstanding school projects and initiatives that inspire and support students in their learning and make a significant contribution to educational outcomes of students and staff in Catholic schools.
The Community Award is centred on the mission of Catholic schools to provide inclusive and welcoming communities where the diverse needs of all students are supported, where partnerships with parents are valued and where all are inspired to actively live the Gospel.
This award recognises the commitment and dedication of staff, students and parents in fostering Christ-centred learning communities centred on supporting the diverse needs of students, staff and the school community.
Keeping pace with the diverse learning needs of WA’s population is vital in ensuring that Catholic schools remain sustainable and responsive in a changing educational landscape. This includes a clear focus on providing accessible and affordable education for all WA families who choose Catholic education.
The Stewardship category acknowledges outstanding initiatives and projects that have or continue to provide an accessible, affordable educational choice for those families that seek a Catholic education, as well as initiatives and projects that demonstrate initiative and commitment to supporting the needs of students, staff and community.
Faith in the Future
In 2021, we reflect and give thanks for the contributions of those who have gone before us in Catholic education, celebrating 50 Years Together as the Catholic Education Western Australia (CEWA) system. Nationally we also commemorate the rich 200-year history of Catholic education in Australia.
The Faith in the Future Award category recognises, celebrates and leverages the contributions of the laity and religious orders and their charisms in witnessing to the mission of Catholic education and its faith story.
Through the Job skills program under the McGowan Governement, 210 Tafe courses in areas that are anticipated to have high demand have had a significant course fee reduction. Co-funded by the Commonwealth Governement, the list of courses are comprehensive and include qualifications in aged care, construction, mental health and the automotive servies, with a further 30 courses to be added in early 2022. This is fantastic initiative by the government and is a great opportunity for anyone considering a Tafe qualification. To find further information or to see if you qualify for the program, please see the link below:
October is the month dedicated to the Rosary and the Vatican has a special offer of a free e-book for families. The 21-page e-book is available through the link below and features a free Click to Prayer Rosary, watercolour illustrations of the mysteries and questions to help families discuss and share faith stories.
The e-book is available on Amazon Kindle and Google Play Books as well as online from www.laityfamilylife.va in English, Spanish, Italian, French and Portuguese.
Today’s announcement by the McGowan government has seen an increase in the vaccination requirements for WA workers. Please see the following link for full details of the occupations and dates that vaccinations are required by.
If you need a vaccination certificate for your employer, this is how to obtain one: