Newsletter October 20th, 2020
Founder of the Sisters of St Joseph, she was canonised on October 17, 2010 at Saint Peter’s Basilica, Rome. Pope Benedict XVI proclaimed Mary’s sainthood during a Canonisation Mass, in the presence of many thousands of people.
To mark the tenth anniversary of her canonization, the Sisters of St Joseph have produced a prayer booklet and accompanying vignettes to honour the occasion.
Ever-present God, you gifted us with Mary MacKillop
whose life inspires us never to lose hope.
Build our confidence in your strengthening presence
especially in the darkest moments of our lives.
Be present with hope for those suffering trauma,
injustice, illness and despair at this time in our world.
We ask this through Christ accompanying us.
The smiles on the faces of the children I greet each morning certainly warms each of our hearts and is a very clear and visible sign that the students are certainly very happy to be back with their teachers and friends at school on a daily basis. All members of our community are to be applauded and commended for the manner in which everyone is working hard to re-adjust to the routines and expectations of life back at school. We have noticed that a number of students are still struggling to maintain complete focus for the whole school day. However, we are confident they will all be very soon back into the ‘complete swing’ of things.
Hopefully everyone who has been past the school recently will notice something missing! That’s right our sports shed has gone! All of the sports equipment has been moved to what is known as the ‘green shed’ located on the boundary near Mill Rose cottage. My sincere thanks to all of the staff for preparing for this move by transferring all of the sports equipment to its new home. In particular I would like to acknowledge Crossroads Trading who assisted with removal of unwanted items, and Therese Winter and Lucinda Kennedy who did a power of work towards the end of last term and during our recent holidays, in clearing out the incredible collection of items from the shed in preparation for the move. An awesome job done - thank you! They are definitely two people you need around when cleaning up anything.
Take care, Gabe.
The Governance of schools in the Diocese of Ballarat is transitioning to DOBCEL (Diocese of Ballarat Catholic Education Limited) - a company formed to oversee the legal and compliance requirements of schools in our Diocese. The Bishop is the company and the Board conducts the work. This means that schools will no longer have the Parish Priest as their governing authority.
Over time the demands of governing (OH&S, legal obligations and responsibilities, insurance, compliance) have become larger while the number of priests and their capacity to ‘run’ schools has decreased. It was also a recommendation from the Royal Commission that parish priests no longer be responsible for the governing of schools. As a result parish Schools including St. Brigid’s Ballan and St. Patrick’s in Gordon will become part of the new structure as of January 1st, 2021. The principal and staff will be employed by the company.
Education policy in the Diocese will now be set by DOBCEL rather than by the Ballarat Diocesan Schools Education Board (BDSAC). Everything else about the school should remain essentially the same. All school land will remain the property of the Parish held in trust by the Roman Catholic Trusts Corporation (RCTC). Our School Advisory Council will participate in a meeting this evening with Sandra Harvey and Kim Butler from the CEO to further understand the changes and implications of this move.
This week is Book Week (rescheduled from Term three) with the theme: Curious Creatures, Wild Minds. Our Book Week Dress up day is on Thursday and due to our present circumstances, we cannot host our Parade in the same way we have done in previous years. Unfortunately we cannot have parents, grandparents, friends and extended family attend on the school site this year. We have an alternative plan which will allow everyone the chance to still ‘see’ the fantastic efforts you all still go to in coming up with clever and creative costumes to celebrate this event. Each class will create a video of their parade, and then with the assistance of our resident IT expert, Emma Anticaglia, this will be transformed into a video which will be available on Seesaw for all to see.
Now that we are all back at school full time and are moving into the warmer months it is expected that all children will be wearing their correct summer uniform. If for any reason your child is not wearing their correct uniform it is expected that a note or explanation is provided by parents. Incorrect uniforms can cause tension both at school and home. If one child is allowed to constantly wear incorrect uniform, this can then create a flow on effect for others, as students can see it as a justice issue. Your support in ensuring children wear the correct uniform would be greatly appreciated.
On the uniform front, I am wondering if there are any parents who might be interested in investigating the possibility of pants or shorts for our girls. We need some interested people to investigate what the options might be available. If you are interested please let us know at the office. With thanks!
Up until last night, under the Covid-19 restrictions, school photos we not permitted to proceed. As a staff we had been busy making alternative plans to be able to acknowledge in particular our Preps and Year 6's. However, the great news is that last night Daniel Andrews announced on his Facebook Page (complete with his own school photo) that school photos are now permissible. Great news for everyone! Our School Photo Date is TUESDAY 17TH NOVEMBER. More details will follow shortly.
Bookclub Issue 7 is available for online LOOP orders. If you are interested in ordering online, please do so by Friday 30th October via scholastic.com.au/LOOP or download the scholastic app. The catalogue can be viewed in the link below.
When orders arrive at school you will be notified by SMS to collect books from the administration foyer.
Friday 23rd October - Grand Final Holiday
Tuesday 3rd November - Melbourne Cup Day
Please find attached a great article written by John Hattie ( renowned educational research and leader) on the impact of distance learning. John writes that, “It is not the time in class, but what we do in the time we have, that matters”. He goes on to state, “What we do matters, not the medium of doing it". I would recommend reading this article as it may ease the level of anxiousness felt by some as they worry about the time students have been out of school in 2020. The article can be viewed here.
It is indeed wonderful to see everyone back in the art room this term.
Because we have been out of it for so long the plan is to get really hands on and a lot of 3D construction will hopefully take place. To this end I am putting out a call for shoe boxes. Are you like me and never throw out a shoe box because it might one day come in handy? I hope so! The trouble is, I haven’t bought 100 pairs of shoes… That “come in handy’ moment has arrived and we are in need of a shoe box for each child. If you can help please send in your shoe boxes. All will be gratefully received and put to good creative use.
Thanks, Trish Lannen
Last term due to an unfortunate accident, the father of Tiffany Cooke (mum to Scarlett, Leah, Shakkia and Alannah) has lost absolutely everything as the result of a house fire. If any family has any furniture or household items that they may be able to donate to assist the family get back on their feet it would be so grateful. You can ring the School Office and we will put you in touch with Tiffany. Please DO NOT deliver any goods to school without speaking to someone in the office first. Thanks in anticipation.
At our fortnightly Parish Leadership meeting last week, we welcomed Tracey O’Neill (Chair and Director of DOBCEL) and Fr Andrew Hayes (Deputy Chair of DOBCEL) to explain what this means as far as the Parish of Gordon is concerned. Diocese of
Ballarat Catholic Education Limited (DOBCEL) is the company established by Bishop Paul Bird to become the governing body for schools in the Ballarat Diocese. DOBCEL will manage and operate Catholic schools in the Diocese of Ballarat, including the employment of current and future staff at Catholic schools and the Catholic Education Office in the Diocese of Ballarat. Parish schools, including St Patrick’s Gordon and St Brigid’s Ballan, that are part of the new structure, as of January 01, 2021, will now be governed by a diocesan company, DOBCEL rather than by the Parish Priest on behalf of the parish. The principal and staff will be employed by the company. Education policy in the Diocese will now be set by DOBCEL rather than by the Ballarat Diocesan Schools Education Board (BDSAC). Everything else about the school should remain essentially the same. All school land will remain the property of the Parish held in trust by the Roman Catholic Trusts Corporation (RCTC). The property will be recorded on the DOBCEL’s balance sheets as lease hold improvements and right-to-use assets. Members of the transition team will meet with the two principals to determine what property remains under Parish and what will be
deemed school land. DOBCEL will assume all liabilities and debts. Any debts will continue to be serviced from school income and loans. This is a new and exciting chapter in the life of Parishes and Parish Catholic schools and if you would like to know more you can visit their website on https://ceob.edu.au.
Ballan Cricket Club - Season 2020/21
Ballan Cricket Club is preparing hopefully for a return to cricket sometime next month.
Any boys or girls who are interested in playing cricket this season please let the club know.
They have Under 11's (play Saturday morning), Under 13's (play Friday night), Under 15's (play Saturday morning) & Under 17's (play Saturday morning).
Please contact Peter McGregor on 0419 597 810 or email email@example.com for further information.