St Bernadette's Primary School Dundas Valley

Newsletter 2020 Term 1 Week 2


Dear families of St Bernadette's,

Welcome to 2020!!

Since returning we have seen all of our students complete a Mathematics Assessment Interview (MAI), started Japanese classes with our new Japanese Teacher Mrs Michelina Michallef, welcomed our new Kindies and participate in a swimming carnival just to name a couple of items! So as a community of learners we are off to a great start.

As a show of support for those who have suffered unfathomable hardships and personal tragedy due to the bushfires we have decided to have a mufti day. On Friday of next week (14th Feb) we ask that the children who choose to come in casual clothes bring a gold coin that we will donate to the bushfire appeal. This will be our first of many social justice events where we as a community support those in our wider community who have fallen on hard times.

St Bernadette’s has always been an extremely generous community so I thank you in advance for your support.

Love & Light

Lisa Gerrard


As you may be aware, our school develops a goal each year that aims to increase the learning outcomes for all students. In previous years, we have had separate goals for Literacy, Numeracy and Religious Education. As we move towards a more integrated, inquiry based curriculum, we have combined our Literacy and Numeracy goal (our Learning Goal) and have have a separate Religious Education (Formation) goal. 

In 2020, our Learning Goal is “For all students to be self regulated learners who are meaningfully challenged and formed through inquiry”.  We have chosen this goal as we believe our students will benefit from being challenged to take control of their learning, develop a growth mindset and use feedback from their teachers and peers to improve their own learning. Students will work with their teachers to evaluate their work and set goals for themselves. In recent years, the New South Wales Education Standards Authority (NESA) have released new curriculum that are based on inquiry and these encourage students to engage with their learning by allowing students some level of self direction.   Throughout the year, the staff will engage in professional learning that supports this goal and will focus on feedback, goal setting and inquiry based learning. We will share more of this learning as the year progresses.

As I come to the end of my first full week, I would like to thank everyone for the warm welcome I have received here at St Bernadette’s. I have spoken to many parents and families and they have been very friendly and supportive. I can see that the staff here go out of their way to support and encourage each and every student and I am eager to be a part of your child’s learning journey too.  I would like to extend a special thank you to Lisa and all the staff who have helped me settle in here so quickly. There is a lovely sense of community here and I am excited and privileged to be a part of it. 

Mrs Willard
Assistant Principal


REFLECTION by Diane Bergant CSA Sunday 9 Feb 2020 Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time A

We live in a world where appearances frequently matter more than they should.   Contrary to this predominating tendency, Jesus teaches us that what we do flows from who and what we are.  We can enlighten the world with the message of the gospel, because our lives have been transformed by that gospel and now we ourselves are light for others.  We can serve others in various ways, only because we have been saved by God’s grace and now we are agents of that grace in the lives of others.  Our own renewal becomes the means through which God renews the world.

This may sound grandiose, but it isn’t.  It is the truth about the way God works.  Extraordinary things are accomplished through ordinary people.  Jesus grew up as the son of a carpenter; some of the apostles were fishermen; Paul was a tentmaker; we are clerks and teachers, bus drivers and doctors, bank tellers and engineers.  Like Paul we come to ministry in weakness and fear and much trembling. It is the Spirit and power of God that work the wonders, and God works them through mundane elements of life such as light and salt.

As children, many of us learned the corporal and the spiritual works of mercy.  We learned that we can practise them in every walk of life. Today’s readings remind us of this.   We may not be asked to perform extraordinary feats, but all disciples of Jesus are called upon to do the ordinary things of life in an extraordinary way.

Parents Retreat Day

Parents are invited to participate in the Retreat Day offered by CEDP on Wednesday 13 May 2020. If you would like to take this opportunity to nurture your faith, please click on the symbol link to register by Wednesday 1 April 2020.

PARISH: Altar Servers' Roster Nov 9 - March 1, 2020



Upcoming Events for Term 1

7/2 - Whole School Mass SRC Commissioning

7/2 - Assembly 2:15pm

13/2 - First Holy Communion Classes 3:30pm - 4:30pm 

14/2 - Class Mass and Reconciliation - Year 4 

14/2 - Mufti Day 

14/2 - First Holy Communion Classes 3:30pm - 4:30pm

17/2 - P&F Meeting 6:30pm 

19/2 - Parent Information Night 

2020 Term 1 Parent Calendar


Happy Birthday

3/1 - Mason N 

4/1 - Hayden W

4/1 - Lydia Y

12/1 - Sereno C

13/1 - Seaview A 

16/1 - Olivia E 

18/1 - Charles C

21/1 - Claire L 

22/1 - Elle H 

22/1 - Ella G K

23/1 - Taniil W

24/1 - Amelia L 

26/1 - Zoey L 

29/1 - Joshua A 

29/1 - Andy Z

As a community of Learners

Here are a few key events that are coming up:

SRC Commissioning Mass - This is our first whole school mass for the year. Here we commission our new SRC members and welcome our new students to our school community.

First Communion Classes - these classes will begin on Thursday 13/2 & Friday 14/2 according to the Parish Timetable. Please contact St Bernadette’s Parish if you haven’t signed up yet.

Mufti Day - This will take place on Friday 14/2. Children can dress in casual clothes with closed in shoes for a gold coin donation. The money raised by this event will be donated to the Catholic Care bushfire appeal.

Staff for 2020

Staffing for 2020.

For 2020 the staffing is as follows:

Kindergarten - Mrs Maria Sadler

Year 1 - Mrs Angela Femia

Year 2 - Mrs Stephanie Bonora & Mrs Carly Lake

Year 3 - Mrs Leanne Cakmakci

Year 4 - Miss Simone Farago & Mrs Louise Williams

Year 5 - Mr Anthony Kensell & Mrs Kerrie Kavanagh

Year 6 - Mrs Corinne Brooker & Mrs Kerrie Kavanagh

Assistant Principal Awards

Assistant Principal Awards

For 2020 we have made a change to our school awards. From now Mrs Willard will update our community on the upcoming events etc and present two students from each class with an award.

Once a term a Principal’s Morning Tea will be held where two students from each class will be selected according to the nominated criteria.

Term 1 - Encouragement

Term 2 - Positive Behaviour

Term 3 - Christian Service 

Term 4 - Academic Excellence

These Principal Awards will be handed out at the second last assembly each term. Parents will be contacted for both of these awards as usual by our office staff.

Gentle Reminder

It has come to my attention that a number of classes last year created Whatsapp groups. While I am all for open communication I can’t support this as an opportunity to make negative comments about school matters. This should also not be used in a way that makes other parents or community members feel uncomfortable. 

St Bernadette’s is a community that upholds the Catholic values where the dignity of the person is paramount. So please consider this … If it is not something that you would say to the person concerned personally then you should probably not post it on social media.

Also please be mindful when dropping off or picking up your children from school that you are considerate of other drivers when entering or leaving the Parish Carpark. During the week the centre 4 car spaces are NO PARKING spots and all other spots are REVERSE in spots. This ensures that cars can follow the arrows to keep everyone safe.

When using the Drive thru option before or after school please ensure that you do not leave your car as the Rangers will consider you parked which can secure a $340 fine. Also be mindful that queuing across the crossing or blocking Evan’s Road can also result in a fine.

As a staff we work really hard to ensure that the children in our care are where they need to be on time. If we are all patient and considerate drive thru works quite efficiently. 

COSHC is moving space

Our Cosch has now moved to the demountable classroom for 2020. They have begun using this space so that families can continue to come down the driveway, ring the buzzer to enter the school grounds outside of school hours.


Congratulations to Alvin in Year 3 for being the first person to use our bike rack!

Thank you

As you are all aware the P&F levy paid as a part of your school fees last year had to remain in the schools account as directed by our diocesean finance department. This change occurred due to a change in finance software and overall policy on how funds are managed at a school level.

In the spirit of transparency I would like to outline what the P&F levy payment purchased for our students to support their learning.

  • $9,037 - Coding and Stem resources to be used from K-6. These items provides the items needed to support the new digital technologies component of our Science syllabus.

  • $2,929 - The new projector for the Hall as the previous one stopped working.

  • $1,420 - as part payment for the new portable sound system and additional wireless microphones. This supports any outdoor events on or of the school grounds.

Each one of these purchases responded to support student learning.

The staff and students of St Bernadette’s are extremely grateful for your ongoing support. Thank you.

Parent Contact Booklet

The contact consent forms filled out at the end of 2019 are being collated and entered so this booklet will be sent home in the coming weeks. 

Explanation of Absences

CEDP promotes daily school attendance. Going to school every day is the single most important part of your child’s education. 

If your child is sick or absent you are required to notify their school on the first day of absence if at all possible.  All explanations to the school must be provided within 7 days from the first day of any period of absence. 

Absences can be explained using one of the following methods:

  • Online: log the absence directly using Skoolbag App
  • Email: the school at
  • Telephone: the school office - 8846 2600
  • Note sent with your child

Where an explanation has not been received within the 7 day timeframe or the explanation has not been accepted, the school will record the absence as unexplained or unjustified on the student’s record. The school will not be able to accept explanations which are not received within the 7 day timeframe. 

Justified reasons for student absences may include:

• being sick or having an infectious disease

• having an unavoidable medical appointment

• being required to attend a recognised religious holiday

• exceptional or urgent family circumstances e.g. attending a funeral

Why do I need to notify the school if my child is absent?

Parents of children aged 6 to 17 years are legally required to ensure their children attend school every day or provide an explanation if they are absent. Notifying the school and providing an explanation for your child’s absence will fulfil this legal responsibility.

The safety and wellbeing of students are the highest priorities for schools. Parents need to know if their child isn’t at school, and schools need to know when and why a child is absent. Notifying the school of your child’s absence helps ensure the safety and wellbeing of all children in school.

What is your responsibility?

  • Ensure your child attends school every day

  • Notify the school immediately if your child is absent

  • Provide an explanation for any absences within 7 days

  • Make sure the school has your correct contact details so that you can receive attendance information about your child

Class Parent

We are now inviting any parent who would like to be a class contact parent to contact their child’s class teacher. Should you want any further information about what this role involves please contact the school office for a role description sheet.

Thanking you in advance for your ongoing support.



Welcome to our new Kindergarten students!

A very warm and friendly welcome to all of our Kindergarten students. It has been a busy week settling the children into their new school routine, learning about school life and discovering their new classroom. As you can see in the photo's they have been busy in the classroom and our wall is filling up quickly with their beautiful pieces of work. Kindergarten have also had the opportunity to spend time in the playground, playing games and getting to know their buddies.

It has been a pleasure seeing their smiling faces everyday and we look forward to a successful first term of school.


Swimming Carnival

Hooray! After many attempts St Bernadette’s had their 2019 Swimming Carnival at Epping Aquatic Centre on Tuesday.

It was lovely to enjoy cool weather with some welcome rain, with many covered areas making the day enjoyable for all. Even though it was a small group, the children cheered heartily and had a great day. 

Thank you to the parents who were able to help on such short notice, and to those who came along to support their children. 

As always there were some fantastic individual performances on the day, though in the end it was the MacKillop house who were victorious! Junior and Senior Age Champions will be announced at assembly this Friday.

Zone Swimming Carnival

Congratulations to the following children who will represent St Bernadette’s at the Cumberland Zone Swimming Carnival at Mount Druitt pool on Wednesday, 12th February!

Ian B

Eamon B

Angelica B

Preston B

Alex C

Tania C

Raphael C

Youran D

Jessica E

Orlando F

Patrick H

Zoey L

Isla M

Jessica M

Brandon N

Olivia N

Heidi S

Lauren T

Lenita T

Orlando V


Welcome Back

Welcome back to the St Bernadette’s community! We trust that everyone had a relaxed and much well deserved break.

A very warm welcome to our Kindergarten families and new families to our community. We had the pleasure of meeting some of you on the first day, and we look forward to having you as a part of our wonderful school community.

We look forward to another great year with you all.

P&F Committee

P&F Meeting

Our first meeting for the year will be held on Monday, 17th February 2020 at 6:30pm.  

We invite you all to attend, listen in to what’s happening around our school, and give any constructive feedback or suggestions.

If you can’t attend the meeting, we encourage that you fill in the form that was sent home earlier this week with your apologies and also your suggestions and/or feedback.

We look forward to seeing you there !


Reminder: P&F Notes are due back tomorrow

A reminder that notes for the meeting are due back tomorrow. Attached is a copy of the note for your reference. 


St Bernadettes Primary School

St Bernadette's Primary, Dundas Valley is a community focused, Catholic parish school catering for boys and girls from Kindergarten to Year 6. The school strives to build a Christ-centred community where faith is integrated with daily life. We provide learning and teaching experiences which enable the children to deepen their faith understandings, investigate, solve problems and explore their learning. We recognise the importance of creating a learning environment that provides opportunities to develop 21st century learning. Technology is integrated into the learning at St Bernadette’s in all Key Learning Areas.

Attendance Rate: 81.5%