Dear Parents

I will start with a special request.

Special Busy Bee (this Saturday)

Opportunity has been knocking for one passerby to the school who has taken to upgrading their own garden with plants from the school. Several of the woolly bushes planted along Vahland Avenue have disappeared over the last week, simply by reaching into the yard from the footpath and removing one or two plants at a time.

In response it is necessary to shift these plants further away from the fence, in turn this is going to be better as they tend to grow to a width that will eventually be at fence level. Shifting requires 40 x 1 metre of turf (kikuya) to be lifted (which is new in itself and, pleased to send to a good home if wanted); another 20 x 1 metres of not so good turf lifted and binned; the tempting plants relocated by half a metre further inside the boundary fence and; mulch spread along this 60 metre strip.

My special request is for a band of willing helpers to be onsite from 6.45am this Saturday 17 November armed with spades, shovels, rakes and the like suitable for this undertaking. The more helpers in attendance, the quicker the job completed (a good ten hours work for one person). If you are free and the start is not too early, please let the Front Office know of your availability and attendance.

The work will save Mr McArdle valuable time spent away from the many tasks he already has to do and, at the same time, make it difficult for whoever it is undertaking their own garden makeover, to be able to complete their scheduled work at the school's expense.

Annual General Meetings

Thank you to staff and parents for attending this week's AGM's for both School Board and P&F. The low numbers in attendance did not deter from our success in having all Executive positions on the P&F and all vacancies at School Board level filled. My thanks to those members from our school community for volunteering their time and service to this school community.

The new membership of the School Board for next year is:


Chairperson - Marina Spence (parent of child currently in Yr 3)

Secretary - *Ray Spry (Yr 3, 1, PK)

Treasurer - Joey Carlos (Yr 6, Yr 2)


Fr Thai Vu (Parish Priest)

David Barns/ Allen McMahon (Principal)

Board membership (General)

Don Albertini (Yr 4)

*Brad Bird (Yr 3, PP, PK)

*Jason Figliomeni (Yr 3, PP, younger pre-school age)

*Tony Petta (Yr 3, K)

Board membership (Representative)

Christine Walsh (Parish Rep)

Una Henderson (P&F)

  • *joining Board at this time.

I would also like to express on behalf of the community here at Orana a vote of thanks to the following members who have served their terms and are leaving the Board. The school is a better place for having had such dedicated and professional individuals.

Frank Italiano (as Board Chair for last two years - six years service)

Reena D'Souza (currently Yr 4 parent and having served four years)

Jim Coten (Yr 3 parent; six years service)

The new Executive for P&F in 2013 will be:


Una Henderson (Yr 1 parent)

Vice President

Kylie Rutherford (Yr 4)


Erin Leech (Yr 1, K)


Sarah Dunleavy (Yr 6; Yr 4; Yr 2)

Thank you to Jo Malins (Yr 4, Yr 1, K) who steps down from position of Secretary of the P&F at this time and who has provided a great deal of time and expertise to the position as well as being highly organised in this role.

Return to School Booklist

These have been sent home with your child today. With the demise of Wooldridges earlier this year, the new supplier for Back to School orders is OfficeMax.

There are three options for ordering - online, fax or post; or hand pick from store (located in Willetton).

Delivery is to a nominated address with a short turnover from ordering to delivery.

School Performance (DVD)

Today, order forms for the purchase of DVD's of The Land of Oz have been sent home with the eldest child in your family.There is a DVD for each of the night performances. The White performance for students in the W classes and the Blue performance for students in the B classes. There is a dual DVD for families with students in both the White and Blue classes.

The DVD's are available for $25.00 and payment needs to be made at the same time as the order. The preferred method of payment is by cash or by cheque made payable to Orana Catholic Primary School. Orders should be placed by Friday 23 November.

Thank you in anticipation for your support. There is no fundraising attached to the sale of the DVD's. The purchase price has been calculated to only cover the cost of production of the DVD and the licensing requirements involved.

Class Groupings 2013

The following is re-printed for the final time this year before class placements are determined for 2013 school year.

Discussions regarding class placements for next year will shortly commence. In consultation with your child's present class teacher, I will be compiling the class lists for 2013. There are a number of factors which must be taken into account when balancing classes, including academic ability, gender, interpersonal relationships, and social dynamics. Parental requests is an additional factor and I would like to make clear my policy on this.

Parental requests can only be met in exceptional circumstances. However if you believe that there is such a circumstance in relation to your child, you are invited to outline this in writing and addressed to me by Monday 19 November. No requests will be considered after this date and please do not ask your child for their preferred teacher as this does not constitute an exceptional circumstance. When writing your request, please be clear on the reason for such as unsubstantiated requests cannot be considered. The class lists will be posted on a school notice board from 19 December.

Please note that I will not be conducting interviews with parents regarding class placement. The above process is an opportunity for you to explain, in writing, the exceptional circumstance you believe is present with regard your child's placement in 2013. Finally it should be said that requests will be considered on their merit but do remain as such, requests. The final allocation of students to the respective classes for 2013 is at the school's discretion taking into consideration all of the above mentioned factors. In some circumstances it is not appropriate nor prudent to elaborate on the decision made.

Remembrance Day

Thank you to our year 6 students for leading the service on Monday and to the students and parents for their attendance and reverence.

Swimming Lessons

These have commenced and continue daily through until Friday 23 November. Swimming lesson times are;

Year 3B and 1B - 12.50pm

Year 3W and 1W -1.30pm

Year 2B and 2W - 2.10pm

Thanks to all for the extra effort in ensuring children are able to attend these as part of the school's curriculum

Long Service Leave

Mrs Laila DiLena (PPB) will finish for the year tomorrow 16 November and goes on Long Service Leave for the remainder of this school year. Mrs Franca Surjan will be in charge of PPB class for the remainder of this school year.

Out of School Hours Care

Following public consultation and input from Staff, School Board and Catholic Education Office this school will move to extend the operation of OSHC to accommodate 4 year old students (Kindergarten) as from the week beginning Monday 4 February. Attendance details are still to be finalized with detailed information made available in full to all Kindergarten and Pre-kindergarten parents (eligible when their children are at kindergarten age) at the Orientation Day for PK and K parents on 30 November 2012.


Recently I have received correspondence from some of our neighbours in Chelmer Way concerned that parents are disregarding property by parking or crossing onto their front lawn areas resulting in damage to reticulation, lawns and gardens. In the same correspondence it was raised about the backing of traffic around the sharp bend on Chelmer Way. I again ask for parental patience, consideration for our neighbours and adherence to practising safe road usage at all times.

On a slightly different matter, we were visited by Council Rangers earlier in the week monitoring traffic along Querrin Avenue immediately after end of school day.

In addition to the above, a reminder that the school drop-off-zone is purely for dropping off and picking up students. Our Office has been approached by concerned parents about others leaving cars unattended at drop-off-zone. I encourage all drivers to pay attention to this matter.


Tomorrow morning assembly with honour certificates for students in middle and upper years.

David Barns