End of Term 2 Newsletter
As we draw toward the halfway point of the year for most of us, it is obvious that for many in our school communities it has been a trying semester. With students, staff and parents falling victim to Covid-19 at different times, trying to keep everything running smoothly has been hard work.
Although the health of everyone takes priority over everything else we must remember the difficulties school communities have been facing, ensuring that children who have been absent have the opportunity to catch up on learning, that teachers and school leaders have the time to recover after they have been struck down and that families who have been dealing with one sick child after another are supported where possible. We don’t always appreciate the work that goes on behind the scenes to keep everything moving in the right direction and so I would like to offer my sincere thanks to every member of our Catholic school communities for their commitment this semester.
As always, life goes on outside of Covid-19 and we now find ourselves working under a new Labor government led by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese. On behalf of Catholic School Parents WA I would like to congratulate Prime Minister Albanese and his team and look forward to working with them, particularly the Hon Jason Clare MP, the new federal Minister for Education. Through our affiliation with Catholic School Parents Australia (CSPA) we are looking forward to establishing positive relationships with members of the new government and ensuring that they are aware of the fantastic contribution that Catholic education brings to the Australian landscape because of parents choosing this form of education for their children and young people.
Last Thursday evening saw the Catholic School Parents WA 68th AGM take place in the now familiar hybrid way with parents joining in both via Zoom and in person. I am very happy to report that we had ten nominations to council with most of last year’s councillors renominating. We also welcome Lesley Pascuzzi from Mater Christi Catholic Primary School who joins us this year. Our constitution allows for three more councillors, so if this is something you might like to know more about, please don’t hesitate to call me for more information. You will also find a link to the AGM booklet further down in the newsletter, which provides lots of information about the work we have been engaged in, in the past year, including through our affiliation with CSPA.
Many of you will have seen or heard in the media the challenge that Vaping is causing in many schools. Many parents and indeed students themselves are unaware of the harm that vaping can do. It is important that as parents we discuss this harmful habit with our young people. It beggars belief that there are those out there who think it is a good idea to create ways of encouraging children and young people to start this damaging habit. Please take the time to read the article about vaping further down and have that conversation with your child.
We have lots of events and other ways that you can engage with us and have your say coming up in the next couple of months. As mentioned in the last newsletter, the annual ‘Awards of Excellence in Building Positive School Communities’ take place this year on Friday 5th August. If you feel someone in your school community deserves an award, please download a nomination form further down in the newsletter and get creative with your reasons why.
We are also involved with two significant projects through our affiliation with CSPA.
The parent survey project will help to inform the federal government about what the challenges and concerns are for parents and families in the Catholic school sector across Australia. It is important to note that if we keep silent on these things it is likely the presumption will be that we are all okay. However, if you feel that the past couple of years particularly because of Covid-19, but maybe other reasons as well, have been difficult for your family, please take the time to complete the survey when it goes live on July 25.
The second project is about the importance of the home/school partnership and how it contributes to good mental health and wellbeing and subsequently learning. We are looking for parents/schools to get in touch regarding the great initiatives that we know are happening in schools in relation to the home school partnership.
Additional information on both projects is available in the newsletter, however as always if you would like to chat about anything in person, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
In the meantime, enjoy the break that is coming up, hopefully most of you will be able to have a little time away from the business of life and take the opportunity to have some fun family time.
Until next time, God bless.
Last Thursday 16th June saw the 68th Annual General Meeting of CSPWA take place both in person and via Zoom. Thank you to all those who took the time to attend.
In a similar format to last year, the meeting papers were all forwarded to those who registered in the days before, and the reports therefore taken as read. Thank you to CSPWA Treasurer Richard Bone who chaired the meeting in the absence of the President and Vice President due to work commitments.
The 2022 AGM papers included reports from the President, Treasurer and the Executive Director. CSPWA also provides for the AGM an Office Report which covers off a lot of the work the office engages in throughout the year. This year we also attached a copy of our new Strategic Plan. To review the AGM booklet, please click here: 2022 CSPWA AGM Booklet
The AGM also includes the opportunity for parents from affiliated schools to nominate to CSPWA Council and nominations for the year ahead include:
Catherine Howarth Frances Jordan Catholic Primary School
Anna Wood St Kieran Catholic Primary School
Richard Bone Mercy College
Marina Hayward Mercedes College
Kate Price St Anthony’s Catholic Primary School
Belinda Stewart St Elizabeth’s Catholic Primary School
Michelle Francis Holy Cross College
Alan Buckley Bunbury Catholic College
Michelle McIntosh St Luke’s College, Karratha
Lesley Pascuzzi Mater Christi Catholic Primary School
We welcome our new members and look forward to working together in the best interests of our children and young people.
Finally, according to the CSPWA constitution, we still have the capacity to co-opt another two councillors. If any parent whose school parent group is affiliated with CSPWA is interested in finding out more about what the role of councillor entails, please do not hesitate to contact Siobhan at [email protected]
CSPWA council and staff look forward to working hard on behalf of all parents who choose a Catholic education for their children in Western Australia.
The Awards of Excellence in Building Positive Catholic School Communities is an integral part of work that CSPWA does in acknowledging and celebrating the amazing work that is carried out within our Catholic school communities. This year, we have invited guests from Catholic Education WA and the Catholic Education Commission of WA to attend the awards night and witness for themselves all of the fantastic work that our Parents, Parent Groups, Principals and Parishes are doing within our Catholic school communities.
The awards night will take place on Friday 5th August from 6-9pm at the White Barn, Rose and Crown Hotel (105 Swan Street Guildford). Special guest Laura Allison, CEWA Chief Psychologist, will be speaking, followed by a presentation of the awards. Laura is a wonderful, engaging speaker and the feedback from her presentations is always outstanding. Tickets are on sale now www.trybooking.com/CAHPO and will include drinks and food.
Please consider nominating someone from your school community as CSPWA council and staff really want to acknowledge those out there who are building positive Catholic school communities, especially in times of such uncertainty. There are five award categories: Parent, Parent Group, Parish, Principal and The Agnes Weymouth Award.
** Nominations close on Thursday 30th June 2022 **
Please visit our website for the awards criteria and nomination forms: CSPWA Awards of Excellence - Catholic School Parents Western Australia
The WA Government has unveiled the first phase of the State Government's action plan to tackle vaping among teenagers and school-aged students.
It is very concerning that many vapes contain nicotine - nicotine can cause long-lasting negative effects on development, including impaired attention, learning, memory ability and altered mood. Young people who vape are 3 times as likely to take up smoking cigarettes.
Vapes can also contain the same harmful chemicals found in cleaning products, nail polish remover, weed killer and bug spray, which can lead to serious lung diseases.
The WA Government has put together some valuable resources for parents and young people to help prevent the dangers of vaping. For more information visit -
Catholic School Parents WA welcomes Madonna King as chair of our national body, Catholic School Parents Australia.
Madonna brings a wealth of knowledge and influence to her new role. She is an award-winning journalist, author and media commentator and is well known for such roles as her TV appearances, six years as a presenter on ABC radio in Brisbane, her Fairfax column, and for chairing the Queensland Anti-Cyber Bullying Taskforce in 2018.
Having written in depth about education and politics, Madonna takes on the role with a thorough knowledge of the issues affecting families with children in Catholic schools. “COVID, for example, and the legacy it continues to provide, presents ongoing and serious challenges, but so do many other issues.”
With a teenage daughter completing Year 12 at a Catholic school in Brisbane, and having written four books on the education and welfare of teen girls, she realises how vital it is for parents to be engaged in their children’s education. “Our children’s education has never been more important, and the home-school partnership plays a vital role in this,” Madonna noted.
Madonna’s professional experience is certain to enrich CSPA’s work as a national parent body and we look forward to working with her through our membership with Catholic School Parents Australia.
Catholic School Parents Australia (CSPA) is looking for members of school communities to participate in an exciting and innovative project promoting the benefits of the home-school partnership in relation to student wellbeing and learning.
CSPA, with support from the Australian Government, is developing a series of videos which will have the potential to be used in all Australian primary and secondary school communities, assisting parents and teachers to co-design parent engagement practices in their school.
The project videos focus on the vital partnership between home and school and discuss common strategies that have been shown to assist in improving student health and wellbeing, and subsequently their learning. As teachers and parents work through the videos together, they will also be encouraged to suggest how practices promoting partnership could be embedded into a school’s strategic plan.
If, at your school, the home-school partnership is prioritized and successful parent engagement practices have been even strengthened by the Covid-19 pandemic, we would love to hear from you. Take a moment and make a difference! If you have a success story to share, please contact [email protected] by the end of June 2022.
Catholic School Parents Australia (CSPA) will be working with state and territory Catholic parent bodies, school parents and friends groups, diocesan directors and principals on the rollout of a parent survey which will be available on the new ENGAGE website from 25 July.
The survey aims to capture parent perspectives on issues of concern that impact their children’s health, wellbeing and learning, to help inform future federal government policy and the Catholic education community. Feedback through this survey will also add to the bank of evidence on how parent engagement can enhance student learning and wellbeing. CSPA has partnered with the Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth (ARACY) in relation to this work.
I urge you to take the time to complete the survey when it goes live on July 25, especially if you feel that the past couple of years have been difficult for your family. As I mentioned in my introduction, if we keep silent on these things it is likely the presumption will be that we are all okay.
CSPA recently launched the ENGAGE social media platform. This new site is tailored to inform parents and carers about issues affecting Catholic schools across Australia and has a major focus on parent engagement in student learning and wellbeing.
Pilgrimage along the Camino Salvado
SAVE THE DATE!
The members of CSPWA Council and Staff would be delighted to have you join us for our first ever Parent Pilgrimage.
The Camino Salvado is a pilgrimage from Subiaco to New Norcia WA in the spirit of Dom Salvado, a pioneering monk from Santiago in Spain. The pilgrimage generally traces Dom Salvado's footsteps in 1846 when he founded Australia's unique monastery town of New Norcia.
The CSPWA pilgrimage will follow the first section of this pilgrimage route. It will commence at St Joseph's Church in Subiaco, go through the city to St Mary's Cathedral and along the river to Bardon Park in Maylands (a distance of approximately 8kms).
On Pilgrimage, we encounter God, ourselves, others and nature. The CSPWA pilgrimage will be an opportunity for participants to learn more about, and to experience the ancient faith tradition of pilgrimage, while spending time with others from our Catholic Community.
Each year Catholic Schools Guide, in partnership with Integrate AV, run a competition that is open to every Catholic school in Australia and this year schools have an opportunity to win an All New CommBox Interactive Touch Screen valued at $9500.
The competition asks schools, families and/or students to build a big lego tower, send a photo and submit their entry. It’s a fun and easy task that can be undertaken in a number of different ways. For more information about the competition, and for the terms and conditions, click here.
The winning entry will be the tallest tower, as judged by the Catholic Schools Guide and Integrate AV team. The winner will be notified on Monday 8 August and also announced on the Catholic Schools Guide website.
With more and more people seeing the benefits of online shopping, now is a great time to begin selling online. If you'd like to learn how to sell safely on Gumtree, eBay or Facebook Marketplace, or pick up tips to help your children, join eSafety's upcoming free online presentation. For more information and to register, please click here. There are upcoming sessions in July and October.
The 1-hour webinar will cover the following topics:
- What to sell online
- How to get started on the top three online selling platforms
- How to open a PayPal account and accept payments
- How to keep yourself safe while selling online