Important Dates to Remember

2023
  
 Term 2 
 Friday 23rd June2.30pm Finish - Last day of Term 2
 Term 3 
 Monday 10th JulyFirst Day of Term 3
 Monday 24th July - Friday 4th AugustFoundation - Year 4 Intensive Swimming Program (Daily for 2 weeks)
 Friday 18th AugustYear 4-6 Music Concert
 Wednesday 23rd AugustBook Week Parade
 Friday 15th SeptemberFooty Colours Day 
2.30pm Finish - Last day of Term 3
 Term 4 
 Monday 6th NovemberPupil Free Professional Practice Day
 Tuesday 7th NovemberPublic Holiday
 Wednesday 6th December - Friday 8th DecemberYear 5/6 Portsea Camp 
(Wednesday to Friday)
 Wednesday 13th December - Friday 15th DecemberYear 3/4 Camp Rumbug
(Wednesday to Friday)
 Wednesday 20th December1.30pm Finish - Last day of Term 4


Principal's Message

Hello FPS community,

It has been another eventful semester at FPS and it seems crazy that we are approaching the halfway mark of the school year. I have had a busy term and it has stopped me from being quite as visible as I would normally like to be so I thought I should make sure you know that I am healthy and well and I have no plans to go anywhere anytime soon. You’re stuck with me! The recruitment process in our sector is very time-consuming and it has been the core of my work this term. Even in the midst of a teacher shortage, we are working hard to never compromise on the high expectations we hold for our job candidates and this can mean multiple cycles to find the right person for us.

As things ease off with recruitment and capital works, we are aiming to return to a fortnightly newsletter from Term Three onwards.

At the end of this week, we will farewell Rachel and Claudia from the Year 3 team and wish them all the best for their next adventures. We also say bye for now to Karen who will be taking a break from her casual role in the office to focus on her family commitments. We have welcomed a number of new staff recently. Kylie and Suzi have settled into FC, Jenelle has enjoyed her start in the art room, Kate has been a fabulous addition to our education support team, and Anna is looking forward to meeting the Year 4-6 students in Term Three as they return to language learning. A huge thanks to our wonderful staff who are so great at welcoming new staff and supporting them as they learn the ropes.

In Year 3, we have appointed Carmen Dennis to the English teacher position and Eleonora Ilari to one of the part-time Italian teacher positions. Carmen will commence in Week Three and Eleonora in Week One and we will continue the search for an additional Italian teacher to co-teach with Eleonora.

Jackie, Nick, and Hannah attended this term’s bilingual teacher network day at Richmond West PS where they visited classrooms, connected with colleagues from across the network, and shared practices with a focus on mathematics in a bilingual context. We are looking forward to hosting the network in Term Three. In the Bilingual Principal Network Executive, we have been working hard on an evidence based vision for bilingual education including a number of system recommendations. Last week, we had the privilege of attending a meeting with the Deputy Secretary to discuss our work in this area and we are pleased to share that we will be meeting regularly across the year to further the discussions.

You will notice small works continuing across the school and with defect rectification also taking place. The oval will be ready for use from the first week of Term Three and we can’t wait to see the last of the temporary fences disappear.

Curriculum Day

Last week, we had our last full day workshop with our literacy consultant, Terri Campbell. We have developed a new writing scope that incorporates the seven purposes for writing; to narrate, to persuade, to recount, to describe, to transact, to instruct, and to explain. On the curriculum day, our teaching teams and leaders worked to develop learning grids that align with each of the seven purposes across the year levels, both for English and Italian literacy. These grids will guide the development of our units of work and support assessment and student goal setting. They will also support writing for an authentic purpose as learners build the language and structure of texts to reach the relevant audience for their unit of inquiry.

We were able to make grids for three writing purposes and a small working party will complete the work across the year. Next semester, we shift our professional learning focus to Mathematics, wahoo!!!!! Another highlight of the day was Sarah Mildner, our talented music teacher, leading the staff in a short singing session that filled our cups to the brim!

Curriculum Day June 2023 Image BCurriculum Day June 2023 Image ACurriculum Day June 2023 Image C

School Council Update

Hi FPS Community
My name is Meredith, and I am pleased to be writing the School Council update for you this month.

To introduce a little about myself, my daughter Cleo started with FPS in 2017 and is now in Grade 6.  I live and work in the local community with the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, and have been involved in a few fun FPS activities over the years - as a parent class rep, member of the Social Club, grant-writer, policy reviewer, cake-maker and Readathon fundraiser!  Lately I’ve partnered with current/former students and community members to create our fabulous FPS Community Mosaic, which has recently been mounted in the Bluestone foyer.

I’ve been part of the School Council since 2020 as a parent member, and it’s been great to be part of a group working hard to shape the great learning environment our children deserve.  Please read on for highlights from our last meeting in May.

We agreed to prioritise five Sub-Committees for the remainder of 2023: Finance, Digital Technology, Buildings & Grounds, Staff Wellbeing and Community engagement (including Reconciliation Action Planning and Inclusion).  As Principal, Jen is an honorary member of each Sub-Committee.  If you are interested in joining any of these groups, please email footscray.ps@education.vic.gov.au. Meetings occur approximately once a month.

School Council approved and endorsed a new Statement of Values and Philosophy.  A key part of FPS’s policy library, the purpose of the Statement is to outline the values of our school community and explain the vision, mission and objectives of our school.  The Statement also outlines the behavioural expectations of school leaders, staff, students and community members, and the shared responsibility to create a positive learning environment.

We also discussed how the difference between the roles and responsibilities of Principal and School Council is not always obvious, and how to better help community members to direct their queries.  We hope the attached information helps clarify this.  In summary, School Council has a limited governance and oversight role, whereas the Principal manages the operational activities of the school and delivery of education to each student.  The Principal is also responsible for the care, safety and welfare of students at the school.  Questions and queries to the School Council are always welcome, and we can be contacted directly via raylene.varone@education.vic.gov.au

In closing, I’d like to say a big thanks to the FPS leadership team  and the entire school teaching faculty for the way in which they continue to go “above and beyond” to support the school  and our students.  For weathering challenges big and small - from a fenced-off oval to staff shortages due to illness - we thank you!

Meredith Jones
Parent Member, FPS School Council



Student Reports

On Thursday 22nd June your child/ren’s report will be provided to you via Compass.

This year our reports will follow the same format as previous years. Some of you may be aware that we are reassessing our reporting approach. This will involve on-going conversations with students, teachers, and families across the year. We will provide updates about this reporting investigation later in the year.

The current achievement report is based on teacher judgements and an examination of evidence of learning, informal and formal, which was collected throughout this semester. The report contains a written comment from your child/ren’s classroom teacher/s, that reflects their assessment of your child’s learning and opportunities for growth going forward.

The report also includes an indication of student achievement in the essential knowledge and skills for key areas of learning (English, Mathematics, cross-curriculum subjects for the Unit of Inquiry, and specialist subjects). Teachers have collected assessment data to make a judgement about your child’s progress against each of the standards described.

You will also receive information about your child/ren’s ‘work habits’ for each subject, e.g., effort and behaviour.

Some students will also receive a comment on their achievement in the TLI (Tutor Learning Initiative).



Parent-teacher Conferences

Our parent-teacher conferences will take place in the second week of Term 3, on Monday 17th and Tuesday 18th July.

  • Monday 17th July
    - 3.40pm - 5.50pm for all year levels

  • Tuesday 18th July

    - 3.40pm - 4.50pm for Foundation, Year 1 and Year 3

    - 2.40pm - 4.50pm for Year 2, Year 4 and Year 5/6 families

These conferences are an opportunity for families and teachers to talk through their child's report. We will be offering a choice to families as to whether they would like Webex or face-to-face. Like previous years, all conferences are for a maximum of 10 minutes.

For our F-3 families, as we are unable to accommodate both English and Italian teachers meeting with families, you will see your child’s homeroom teacher only. Should you have a specific question you would like answered please make sure this is forwarded to your child’s homeroom teacher the week before conferences, so they have time to meet with their teaching partner to prepare. Alternatively, you can contact either teacher if you have further questions.

Like last year, the 10 minute conferences will follow the below format:

  • Sharing successes and strengths
  • Any areas relevant to the student's report
  • Areas the student is working towards
  • Anything else families would like their child's teacher to know


Celebrations of Learning

The Term Two Celebrations of Learning saw our classrooms open to welcome in families and the wider school community. The purpose of these open classrooms is to provide the community with an opportunity to see the wonderful learning that takes place at FPS. The focus is on the unit of inquiry that has been explored over the term through many different media. This term we shared a variety of work ranging from podcasts in the Year 5/6 area through to giant cardboard cities constructed by our Foundation students showcasing their learning about the function of communities. It was wonderful seeing parents sitting with their children, asking questions about their learning. A big thank you to parents who sat with students whose adults were unable to attend - more evidence of our caring community. Joining us in classrooms allows you to see how our day to day learning happens through the support of anchor charts, word walls, planned play, classroom libraries, student samples on the walls, and the many other creative and inspiring displays that our teachers design.

Next term we will all be inquiring into Sharing the Planet; an inquiry into rights and responsibilities in the struggle to share finite resources with other people and living things; communities and the relationships within and between them; access to equal opportunities; peace and conflict resolution.

If you feel you have any expertise in any of these areas, please let your child’s teacher know. We love to have experts from the community share their knowledge. If your expertise cannot be used at your child’s year level, be brave and come and talk to another grade!

The Term 3 Celebrations of Learning will take place in either Week 9 or 10. As soon as we confirm the date we will let you know!
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Foundation Information Evening

We had our second Foundation 2024 information session and our final tour for this term and we were pleased to see large numbers of families in attendance. We strongly encourage all families with children starting school at FPS next year to enrol now to help us finalise numbers and start recruitment early. This is particularly important when we are seeking new Italian teachers. At this stage we anticipate three Foundation classes again, with the possibility of four if enrolments continue at the current rate. Thank you to Kathy, Chris, Caroline, Jackie, and Emily for supporting our information nights and sharing all the great things about how we learn and grow at FPS.

Foundation Information Evening



Breakfast Club Visitors

Last week, we were asked to host a press conference for the Premier, Daniel Andrews, Education Minister, Natalie Hutchins, Local MP, Katie Hall, and Foodbank Australia. The press conference focussed on the continued support from the Victorian Government and Foodbank Australia of the School Breakfast Club Program. You might not know but each Friday morning before school Nick Boffa (Year 2 Team Leader/Teacher), Jenny Campbell (Mental Health Wellbeing Leader), Shell Thomas (Parent) and a group of student leaders (shown in the photo below) volunteer their time to run a School Breakfast Club. Foodbank Australia also provide food packages for families who find themselves in need. If you would like to know a little more about how to access the food packs, please email Jenny Campbell at jenny.campbell@education.vic.gov.au.

Breakfast Club Visitors Image 1

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Footscray PS Community Mosaic

We are delighted to finally share that we have mounted our beautiful Footscray Primary School Community Mosaic. This project has taken over a year to put together by our incredibly creative and talented parent, Meredith Jones.

Work commenced on the mosaic in 2021 to celebrate the school’s 160th Anniversary.  Over 18 months, Meredith brought together former and current students, family and friends of the school, community members and local businesses to produce the artwork.

Inspired by design ideas from students, the finished mosaic stands over 3m tall, weighs 200kg and is made entirely of donated and recycled materials from the local community.

Of special note are the 442 handmade tiles incorporated into the artwork by small groups of students.  During lunchtimes, the groups worked together to place the tiles into the mosaic design using sticky adhesive grout. Each tile features the name of a community member connected with the school between 1885 – 2023, representing the many personal stories which make up the Footscray Primary School journey so far.

The completed mosaic was displayed for the first time at our FPS Community Day in Term One this year, where visitors could follow the photo journey about the construction of the mosaic. As of last week, the mosaic is now on display in our foyer at the front office in the Bluestone administration building. This welcoming display is the first location that all our school visitors must attend, and we are super proud to have this mosaic represent our school community.

Our sincere thanks go to everyone involved in producing and supporting the mosaic.   

Please drop in at the office when you get a chance to enjoy this superb piece of community artwork as a lasting legacy to be enjoyed for many years to come!

And thank you, Meredith!

Community Mosaic



School Community Pantry

Did you know that we have a community pantry? The pantry is located in the Bluestone Building near the office area. The community pantry can be used by any school families as needed.

The pantry needs school community support. If your family can spare $5 and pick up a few extra groceries in your shop, it makes the world of difference to other families. All brands are welcome.

Your donations are appreciated.  We are particularly looking for the following items:

Pantry Staples

  • Rice
  • Dried Pasta
  • Noodles (Asian style)
  • Flour – all types
  • Spices
  • Dried lentils, beans, soup mixes
  • Tomato sauce, soya sauce, chilli sauce
  • Canned tuna
  • Canned tomatoes
  • Teabags/coffee
  • Long life milk (including small ones)
  • Biscuits/school lunch snacks

Cleaning and Toiletries

  • Dishwashing liquid and Clothes washing liquid
  • Shampoo/conditioner
  • Toothbrushes/toothpaste (cheap packs of 10 we can split up)
  • Deodorants
  • Sanitary products

Thank you

School Pantry Image 1School Pantry Image 1

Term 3 Important Dates

  • Swimming for Foundation to Year 4 is daily between July 24th to 4th August. Permission notes and further information about this event will be distributing to families very soon.
  • Foundation to Year 3 music concert is on Wednesday 16th
  • Year 4-6 Music concert is on Friday 18th 
  • Book Week Parade Wednesday 23rd of August.
  • Footy Colours Day Friday 15th of September- Free Dress Day- Gold coin donation with money raised supporting children with cancer.


Every Day Matters

Teachers and leaders at Footscray Primary monitor attendance patterns to ensure student’s wellbeing and school engagement. If you are experiencing any difficulties in regard to attending school, please contact our Mental Health and Wellbeing Leader, Jenny Campbell.

Every Day Matters

When students have an unexplained absence, as a school we will follow these steps:

  1.  You will receive a SMS from Compass alerting you to the absence
  2. The class teacher will call or email you if your child has been absent for 2 or more days
  3. Your child may be referred to our Mental Health and Wellbeing Leader and you may receive an email/phone call to follow up

Footscray Primary School Attendance Policy can be found on our website:
https://www.footscrayps.vic.edu.au/uploaded_files/media/attendance_2022_policy.pdf



Student Engagement Groups

This term, FPS have introduced small student engagement groups during session 5 four days a week. These groups are being run by our Mental Health and Wellbeing Leader, Jenny Campbell and our new Education Support Staff, Kate Hamlet. Students have been given the opportunity to connect with peers while engaging in a range of different activities. This term they have been learning about taking responsibility for ourselves and our environment. They learnt how to identify weeds while getting the garden beds ready to plant some bean seeds. Next term we are looking forward to learning how to compost as well as watching our garden grow.

Our students have expressed interest in exploring pottery, art, bike skills and cooking. If you have skills or experience in any of these areas and would like to volunteer to participate in these sessions, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Please email Jenny at jenny.campbell@education.vic.gov.au



Student Engagement Groups Image 2

Student Engagement Groups Image 3Student Engagement Groups Image 1




School Policy Update

As a Victorian Government School, Footscray Primary School operate within policies developed by the Department of Education. A number of these policies are compulsory for all government schools, with others available for school use dependent on school context and needs. Our School Council review and ratify policies that are due to expire or require review at each council meeting.

While policies may not sound like the most exciting or inviting literature for casual reading, they play an extremely important role in guiding the consistent operation in many elements of school life. Policies communicate consistent expectations, processes, and frameworks that families and staff can refer to as needed. Several policies have recently been passed via School Council, including:

  • Bullying Prevention
  • Statement of Values and School Philosophy
  • Student Engagement and Wellbeing
These policies can be found on our school website (About > Policies). We will continue to bring ongoing updates to you as further policies are reviewed. Policies often require community consultation, and we are always eager to partner with family members interested in this area of school life. If you would like to be involved in ongoing policy consultation and development, please email Chris Wilson at chris.wilson3@education.vic.gov.au

Italian Classes for Adults

This term, a group of adults from our FPS families have been learning Italiano with our language assistant, Laura. In the classes, they have been learning how to communicate using Italian and have covered lots of different topics, such as introducing themselves and talking about everyday life, dining out, describing people and animals, giving and asking directions.

The groups include beginners and some ‘students’ with a bit more experience and are free for FPS families.

If you would like to participate in one of our classes: contact Laura by email - laura.bellieni@education.vic.gov.au

Italiano Classes at FPS



Kindergarten Story time in Italiano

Laura and Federica, our Italian language assistants, have been out and about visiting nearby kindergartens for Story Time in Italiano. If your local kindergarten would like us to visit to read a story and sing some songs in italiano, let us know - footscray.ps@education.vic.gov.au

Kindergarten Story Time



Message from the Canteen

When submitting your lunch orders, please use the students name (not parents) and the students current class.  This will ensure that all lunch orders are delivered correctly.

Thank you,
Vinh

Community Information

CWA Footscray - Craft De-Stash Market Saturday 8th July

CWA Craft De stash Market