Welcome to Term 3 CSPWA Newsletter
Welcome back to term 3!
As we commence Semester 2, 2020 we find ourselves in a much more positive space than we have been in. Whilst it is essential that we remain vigilant and do not become complacent about the potential of another round of Covid-19 here in WA, we are having some time now to think not just about moving forward but also looking at the learnings from our experiences over the past 6 months.
While we are cautiously moving ahead in a positive frame of mind, I am sad to be hearing stories about teachers from across all systems, commenting on how much better it is not having parents on school sites! I ask the question ‘better for who?’ At a time where we are talking more and more about the significant and positive outcomes of parent involvement and engagement in their children’s learning and the importance of the home/school partnership, how can we take this to the next level if parents as key stakeholders in this space do not feel welcome on school sites. We are so grateful to our schools and teachers in regard to the fantastic work that they are doing in reconnecting our children to school and each other, however we cannot ignore the fact that many of our parents are still feeling a level of anxiety (particularly in light of what it happening currently in the Eastern states) around their children’s wellbeing, safety and learning.
The Catholic school is a community, these days possibly the first real community our children will belong to. Therefore, it is incumbent on all of us as part of this life-giving community to find ways that we can all work together in the best interests of those we are there to serve, our children and students.
Rather than dwelling on the negatives of this situation maybe we should be looking at why teachers are feeling this way. One of the conversations we have heard is about parents (when allowed on school grounds) sometimes delaying the start of class by attempting to have ‘impromptu’ meetings with teachers at the beginning of the day. While on occasion it may be necessary to inform a teacher of some important issue concerning a child, CSPWA would suggest that schools take this opportunity to relook at their communications procedures. It may even be a good time to review these guidelines and invite some parents to be part of this process. Information should include when, how and where parents and teachers can communicate with each other. This allows for both parties to prepare themselves for a conversation that will hopefully result in a good outcome for all.
Whilst this is just one challenge that teachers are talking about there may be others that would be worth discussing together and forming some guidelines around. Guidelines that are developed in partnership between parents and teachers are much more likely to be effective, as both parties feel they have been consulted with and therefore have a vested interest in the outcome.
Karen Mapp, a family engagement expert from the US recently released a second version of her Dual Capacity-Building Framework for Family-School Partnerships and indicated through her recent research “one of the things many people said, and is actually borne out through the research, is that the relationship, the development of relational trust, between home and school, is key for any other relationship to actually take place”. How do we manage this if one half of the relationship does not feel welcome at school?
To end on a more positive note, we know that many schools together with their P&F’s and parent groups are back working together building positive and energetic school communities. We would love to share some of your stories both in our newsletter and through our social media pages. Send them through to Theresa@csp.wa.edu.au and we will showcase your activities.
Until next time, stay vigilant and stay safe.
Have you nominated yet for CSPWA Awards of Excellence in Building Positive Catholic School Communities? The Awards of Excellence have always been an integral part of the work we do at CSPWA. The awards were introduced to acknowledge and celebrate the amazing work that is carried out within our Catholic school communities that demonstrates positive outcomes for students, families and the wider school community.
This is a fantastic opportunity to recognise and celebrate the incredible things that are happening in our Catholic School communities so if you have an exceptional Principal, awesome P&F, outstanding Parent, or wonderful Parish, please nominate for these awards. Anyone in the school community can nominate their Principal, P&F, Parent, or Parish. Applications are welcome from all Catholic schools however, only affiliated schools are eligible to win a prize.
Presentation of CSPWA's Awards of Excellence 2020 will be made at Catholic Education's School Staff breakfast, which will also include the Quality Catholic Education Awards, to be held on October 16th 2020.
Nominations are now open and will close on Sept 1 2020
Schools across Australia are gearing up to sock it to poverty with Socktober in October 2020! To find out how your students can learn about mission and social justice, while making a difference and having lots of fun, check out this video!
Still have questions? Catholic Mission’s free webinar on Thursday, July 30 at 2pm will provide all the information you need, including tips and tricks from current primary and secondary teachers. A recording will be available after the session.
Register today: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_pOcLDBuFRTucubV3IYOPkA
#Socktober2020 #sockittopoverty ⚽
Or contact Judith, our Schools Engagement Coordinator at JNyamuli@catholicmission.org.au.
Lots of parents don't realise that students can study a vocational course at school, still get an ATAR and go to university, that they can start an apprenticeship at school, or that VET graduates start on higher wages than most university graduates. In fact, a lot of parents don't really know what VET is, full stop.
The Australian Parents Council is determined to try and help change this, so that parents can help their kids make smart choices about their future. And with everything that young people are facing at the moment as they venture into an uncertain world, there's never been a better time to help parents understand the full range of options available to kids in school and beyond.
Parenst are invited to be part of this free VET Myth busters webinar on Thursday August 27 7.30-9.30pm AEST.
The session is designed to answer parent questions about what vocational education and training is, and aims to provide up to date, relevant information so parents can help guide their kids into a rewarding career.
It will explore the choices available to students, alternative career paths, apprenticeships and work placements, support for trainees, and the flexible options to help kids upskill and get ready for work.
The panel of industry experts, training providers and careers advisors will be ready to answers everyone's questions. You can submit questions to the panel ahead of time via firstname.lastname@example.org.
The webinar is open to all parents and students across Australia. Simply register via https://austparents.edu.au/event/vet-mythbusters-a-parents-guide-to-vocational-education-and-training/
ABC have a new children’s fiction podcast, called Mackaroy Uncovered, that is aimed at children aged 10-12 and their parents. If you have children that fall into that age bracket you might find this interesting! All eight espisodes have been released.
Tang and Mitchell are 14-year-old best friends who live in a small country town. They spend their spare time investigating conspiracies for their YouTube show. One day they notice something very strange happening to the town’s internet between exactly 7pm and 8.04pm every night. Something…or someone… is using all the town’s data.
National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day is a national day of celebration across the country each year on 4 August, and is dedicated to celebrating and supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. Children’s Day has been run annually since 1988 and is the initiative of SNAICC – National Voice for our Children.
Applications are invited for grants of between $20,000 to $250,000 in funding for a project that will bring a profound change to disadvantaged students. Eligible schools will be able to apply for a Fair Education or Smart Giving grant, and schools can also register a project on the Fundraise Yourself platform. Applications close 11 September 2020. For more information visit the Schools Plus website.
A new report released last week sets out recommendations to improve how senior students learn about their opportunities to pursue work or further studies.
In a media release, the Australian Government welcomed the release of the final report of the Review of Senior Secondary Pathways, led by Professor Peter Shergold, Looking to the future – Report of the review of senior secondary pathways into work, further education and training.
The report makes 30 findings on the current senior secondary pathways arrangements and 20 recommendations on helping young people navigate their senior years and enter further study or the workforce including:
- Introducing a learner profile that will identify a student’s range of skills, knowledge and experiences both from inside and outside the classroom
- Developing a national strategy with the Skills Council to deliver VET to secondary students
- Strengthening career guidance by creating a network of hubs providing individualised career guidance with an initial focus on regional and remote areas
Federal Minister for Education Dan Tehan said the recommendations made by Prof Shergold worked in conjunction with the government’s plans to improve higher education and vocational education and training.
"Improving how we guide young Australians into work or further study in a way that satisfies their ambitions while ensuring they have the skills that employers’ demand will be critical to the recovery of the youth labour market," Minister Tehan said.
Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business Senator Michaelia Cash said the government strongly supported the report’s aims of strengthening the quality and relevance of vocational education and training in schools, while also supporting school-based apprenticeships and traineeships.
"Building engagement between schools and local employers exposes students to opportunities in their local area and helps them develop job-ready skills," Senator Cash said.
"The report’s focus on the importance of high-quality career guidance for students aligns with our establishment of a National Careers Institute (NCI)," she said. "The NCI is undertaking valuable work in bringing together schools, businesses, industry and career practitioners to help people successfully move through their chosen careers."
The government will consider the recommendations of the review before working closely with state and territory colleagues on a response through Education Council.
Download the report
President-Catherine Howarth (Francis Jordan CPS)
Vice President-Anna Wood (St Kieran's CPS)
Treasurer-Richard Bone (Mercy College)
Secretary-Rebeccca Furfaro (Salvado College)
We warmly welcome back our existing coucillors-
Alan Buckley (Bunbury Catholic College)
Marina Hayward (Mater Christi CPS)
Simone Northcott (St Mara Goretti CPS)
Kate Price (St Anthony's CPS Greenmount)
CSPWA would also like to welcome two new council members
Michelle Francis (Holy Cross College)
Belinda Stewart (St Elizabeth's CSP)
According to the CSPWA constitution, we have the capacity to have an additional five more council members. We are currently following up with some parents from the dioceses of Geraldton and Broome, as we feel it vitally important that the voice of the rural and remote parent is heard at the table. However, we would be very happy to hear from 2-3 parents who feel they would like to serve the wider Catholic school parent community, through participation on CSPWA Council. For anyone who would like additional information as to what the role entails, please don’t hesitate to contact Siobhan on 0409 025 683 for further information. The key pre-requisite is that you have a child in a school which is currently affiliated with Catholic School Parents WA.
CSPWA staff congratulate all council members on their nomination and we look forward to working hard with all of you in the year ahead, continuing our commitment to those parents who chose a Catholic education for their children.
To view AGM reports click
The Junior Crew Pack is a marine safety educational resource for primary school students in Years 3, 4, and 5. It focuses on 3 key marine safety topics:
- Safe use of boats.
- Personal boating safety.
- Safety of others when boating.
The program was introduced to present important marine safety knowledge and skills from the Recreational Skipper's Ticket (RST) in a way that primary aged students can appreciate.
It was developed by the DoT's Marine Education Boatshed in partnership with:
- Department of Education.
- School Curriculum and Standards Authority.
Students are awarded a Junior Crew Certificate upon completion of a number of worksheets, activities, and tasks.
This resource is available FREE to teachers in Western Australian primary schools.
The Junior Crew program is aligned to the school curriculum and teachers can offer this course as a cross-curricular program.
The program can be used to cover a number of themes, such as:
- Water safety.
- Sea and seashore.
- Lakes and rivers.
The program addresses two of the seven general capabilities of school curriculum:
- Critical and creative thinking.
- Personal and social capability.
To Find out more visit the website https://www.transport.wa.gov.au/imarine/junior-crew-program.asp