- News from Lynda
- Thoughts with a Cuppa
- Arrowsmith Bring a Friend
- Story Time Sessions - Term 3
- Year 5/6 Camp Cover Winers
- Sports News
- P & F Update
- Maths Challenge
- St Catherine's Concert H20: Tuesday 8 October
- Library / Learning Hub News
- Child Road Safety
- First Eucharist Candidates
- St James College Year 7 Enrolments
- Tours at De La Salle College
Thank you and Good Luck
Mrs Sandra Surace has resigned her teaching position at St Catherine’s and will not be returning in term three. I know you will join me in wishing Sandra all the best for the future as she pursues her career in another field.
I thank Sandra for her eight years of service to St Catherine’s School and for her dedication in supporting the learning and well being of students in her care over the years. In Sandra’s leadership role her organisation, energy and enthusiasm for many school events and community activities has contributed to the success of these events.
Mrs Debra Bruenjes and Mrs Carmel Donlon will continue in their current role teaching the students in 5-6SS until the end of the year. Debra will work in 5-6SS classroom on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Mrs Carmel Donlon will work in 5-6SS classroom on Tuesday.
Year 5-6 Camp
Next term on Wednesday 17 to Friday 19 July year 5-6 students along with seven staff members will be attending Camp Weekaway in Benloch. Much preparation goes into organising and planning for school camp. I wish to take the opportunity to thank the staff attending camp as they need to make alternative arrangements with their own families so they can be away overnight with our students.
School camp provides an opportunity for students to engage in activities and challenges in a safe and supportive environment. The students are very excited about spending time with their peers and participating in outdoor activities. Our students will be well cared for and supervised at all times. A final letter to parents including details about what to pack etc will be sent home this week.
I have compiled a summary document for parents indicating all the forms of communication that take place in our school. A hard copy of this document will be handed out to parents at parent teacher meetings. You can also access this document on the parent engagement platform on the side menu or the school app. If you are unsure of where or how to access school information please ask any of our staff members who will be more than willing to help.
Thank you to Julie Griffin and all the parents who volunteered to supervise students, sell glow products or bake and sell snacks at our school disco. A big thank you to Mark Inglis (Charlee’s dad) for his DJ work on the night. This was a wonderful night for our students.
School Closure Day
There will be a school closure day on Monday 5 August. There is no school for students on this day. Teachers will be engaged in Professional Learning at school on this day.
On the 1st July 2019 The Assisted Dying Law comes into effect in Victory. This law raises much debate in our Community.
A dear friend of mine, Fr Geoffrey King died of MND in May of 2015. He was a man of great Faith. He was a person of few words. But when he spoke you listened.
As we continue to debate what this law means for us as Christians who see life as a gift and not ours to take perhaps it is worth taking the time to read Geoff’s article which appeared in The Age in 2013. His reflection may help us to see things in a new way.
Edward Dooley (Mission and Faith Leader)
Life or death decision inspired by faith in God
Despite suffering motor neurone disease, I won't take my own life as Beverley Broadbent did.
By Geoffrey King (written April 2013) [Died May 7th 2015]
I read with great interest, and I hope empathy, the story about Beverley Broadbent ending her life. I think I can appreciate her choice to end her life while still able to enjoy living. But it is not a choice that I intend to make.
It is, nevertheless, a choice that confronts me. I was diagnosed almost two years ago with motor neurone disease, admittedly with a rare variant of the disease that typically progresses more slowly than the more common forms.
Already my legs are virtually useless and I spend about 14 hours a day in an electric wheelchair. I need help to get into and out of bed and to get to the toilet. More recently I have noticed the beginning of weakness in my right arm - a sign of things to come, as all of my voluntary muscles begin to shut down.
At present my determination is to live as fully as possible within these already significant limitations. I am acting dean of the united faculty of theology within the MCD University of Divinity. I am teaching one course within that faculty. As a Catholic priest I celebrate Mass several mornings a week in the church at Richmond where I live, and on Sundays at Werribee. I go to the MCG when Collingwood is playing. I go to concerts in the city, and to exhibitions at the NGV. I frequent cafes that serve good coffee. I do most of the food shopping for my small community.
For some of this I need to use a maxi taxi. But more commonly I travel simply by wheelchair or by train, courtesy of a free myki pass and the help of train drivers who put out a ramp for me. When my arms and upper body become weaker, all this will be more difficult, ultimately impossible, but I have managed thus far to adapt in ways that would a few years ago have seemed improbable to me, and I hope such adaptation can continue.
Why, however, do I choose to press on into the more horrendous parts of this motor neurone journey, rather than seeking to take Beverley Broadbent's path? Ultimately for me this is not a matter of reason, but a matter of faith. I believe in a creator (and creative) God and I believe in the paradoxical power of the cross.
For me, life is a gift from God. So far it has been an extraordinarily generous gift. I have been able to do things, and to experience things, and to go to places (places of the heart as well as geographical places) that I would never have conceived of when I was, say, 20. I have had a wonderful life, and for this I am immensely grateful. I have now entered into much darker places, but even here I find new life: there is a sense of adventure, for example, in finding how to do even simple things from the constraints of an electric wheelchair.
I know that I shall never again go for 40-kilometre walks along Washington's C&O Canal, nor wander around the Parthenon on a misty morning, nor drink a dark lager in Munich's Augustiner Bierhalle, nor go to an outdoor concert at night in the Roman Forum, nor even catch a ferry on Sydney Harbour. There is deep regret in all of that, but it is far outweighed by a sense of gratitude that I have been able to do these things in the first place.
And then there is the cross. I do not believe that suffering is meaningless, but that, like Christ's suffering, it can be redemptive. Of course, we should do all we reasonably can to prevent suffering, but we will still be confronted with it.
This awful disease puts me in solidarity with others suffering around the world. It has enabled me to enter into the world of the disabled, such as the other wheelchair passengers I meet on the train. With them I see the world with new eyes. And in small ways I have become an advocate for the disabled and for disability access. I have been inspired by the peacefulness of other motor neurone sufferers, some of them much more disabled than I am.
I have also discovered how much people love me. Prayers, good wishes, and material help have come from places expected and quite unexpected. Through my blog (geoffreysj.com), I have met new friends and reconnected with old ones. Having motor neurone disease, then, has enabled me to live life in new ways. I actually see it as a gift, a very challenging and mysterious gift, from a life-giving God.
None of this is to pretend that motor neurone is not an absolutely awful disease, that the later stages in particular are about as nasty as it gets. As a friend remarked, getting motor neurone disease is drawing the shortest of short straws. I just hope that I can maintain my positive attitude as things get a lot tougher. Nor do I want my life to be artificially prolonged, by being kept going on a ventilator, for instance, as my breathing muscles fail. At that point I want to be allowed to die, but for me that is very different from taking positive steps to end my life.
None of this is meant as a direct comment on the politics of euthanasia, nor is it an attempt to rebut the views of Beverley Broadbent. My attitude is based on my Christian faith. I do not want to impose my views on those who do not share that faith. But it is the statement of someone who wants to live life to the full, who has found some of that fullness in the unlikeliest of places, and who trusts the amazing grace that has brought me safe thus far to lead me on.
Geoffrey King is a Jesuit priest and acting dean of the united faculty of theology, a college of the MCD University of Divinity (originally known as the Melbourne College of Divinity).
For an article arguing other viewpoints on this issue you might like to read:
Each term Miss Gibbs and Mrs Bush organise a 'Bring a Friend' Session in the Arrowsmith Classroom. This provides an opportunity for the students visiting to develop a sense of what the Arrowsmith Classroom is like and how hard their friends work each and every session. It also provides the Arrowsmith students a chance to show their friends what they do and how these cognitive exercises focus on strengthening their learning capacity.
Below is a reflection by Ava Ronchi and Jack Susic who visited the classroom a couple of weeks ago.
Arrowsmith - An hour in the life of our school friends
Wow this is really hard! This was our first thoughts when we were invited to the Arrowsmith ‘Bring A Friend’ session last Thursday. We were lucky to be chosen by our friends Emily and Miles to join them in an Arrowsmith session and try some of the cognitive exercises that they do each and every day. Some of the exercises consisted of symbol recognition, lexical memory work and tracing. All of these exercises strengthen the brain in many different ways and we can see how. The Arrowsmith students work very hard on these exercises to master them and we think they have amazing persistence. We really enjoyed our experience and learned a lot about the Arrowsmith Program. Thanks for inviting us.
Any families interested in finding out more about the Arrowsmith Program. Please contact Michael Juliff firstname.lastname@example.org
Football - by Jack Thorp
On 14th June, St. Catherines played against St. James Brighton in footy. St Catherine’s won 47 to 17 and we decided to play 2 halves instead of 4 quarters due to time restraints. Oliver McDonald scored 2 goals, Jack Thorp scored 3 goals, Oscar Bowen scored 1 goal and 1 behind, Nicholas Stamatakos scored 1 behind, Daniel Argiropoulos scored 2 behinds, Peter Kokkalos scored 1 goal and Emilia Fode scored 1 behind. Best on ground was Oliver McDonald, Jack Thorp, Oscar Bowen and Miles Brown.
Netball - by Jess Lee
On the 14th of June 2019, the St Catherine’s Interschool teams went to St James Brighton to play Netball . The “A” team scored 30 goals while St James Brighton scored 17 goals. The “B” team scored 19 goals while St James Brighton scored 24 goals.
Best on court was Andy, Oscar L and Gemma.
Many thanks to the St James Brighton teachers who helped umpire us and thanks to St James Brighton for playing Netball with us!
Netball and Football Lightning Premiership
Sadly our Netball Lightning Premiership was cancelled due to weather conditions.
It has been resheduled to Thursday 27th June. All information, times, date and venue will be the same as the signed Caremonkey. Sandra Renehan will replace Kath Barca.
It was another wet day but in true football fashion we soldiered on in rain and finally sunshine.
St Catherine's won 3 games, lost one and had a draw in a friendly against the team who were to eventually beat us in the Grand Final.
It was a fantastic day for us and our team played like a well oiled machine. Every player made a contribution on the day.
The Grand Final was a close match but in the end St Anthony's were just too strong in the final minutes of the match.
I am extremely proud of our team who gave it their all on the day displaying incredible skill in very hard fought matches.
All children deserve special mention but Best on Ground goes to Daniel Argirppoulos who played consistently well in all matches, sporting a black eye for his efforts.
Well done everyone.
Unfortunately we were given misinformation on the day and we were told runners up would also go through to Districts.
Only the winners go through.
When is it safe for a child to use an adult seatbelt?
Children aged between 7 and 16 years are required to use a booster seat or adult seat belt when travelling in a vehicle. An adult lap sash seatbelt is designed for people of a minimum height of 145cms and over (the average age children reach this height is between 10 to 12 years old).
The safest option for your child will depend on your child’s height – do the five step test to find out.
The five step test
This five-step test can help assess whether a child is big enough to be safely restrained by a seatbelt. The child should be able to:
Sit with their back against the seat back
Bend their knees comfortably over the front of the seat cushion
Sit with the sash belt across their mid-shoulder
Sit with the lap belt across the top of their thighs
Remain in this position for the whole trip.
We have a height charts in various places around the school so that you can measure your child to see if they are tall enough to be in a car safely without a booster seat.
Please remember to use the ‘safety door’ when getting out of your car at school to ensure your children are getting out of the car safely – this is the curb/footpath side rear door.
Information for families about choosing a safe car seat and a safety door sticker have been placed in student Reading bags (Junior School) and schoolbags (Senior Bags).
Karen Glancy- Foundation Parent