St Bernadette's Primary School Dundas Valley

Newsletter 2020 Term 4 Week 6


Dear families of St Bernadette's,

Last Monday we held our P&F AGM. It was great to see so many parents come along and hear some up to date school news. As many of you know I sent out a motion for dissolution of the P&F in its current form. There was much discussion around this and I would like to clear up a couple of myths.

Myth 1 - that the school doesn't want a P&F anymore.

This is not true at all. As a school community we welcome all assistance from Parents in any form possible. We know how important it is for our children to see the school work with their parents and vise versa.

Myth 2 - that parents will not have any say in what happens in the school.


Once again, we welcome all feedback and suggestions. With this Parent committee model we want to encourage parents to participate without the hassle of having to adhere to our strict financial protocols. So what we would like to do is hold a morning tea at the beginning of each year to invite parents to make suggestions on fundraising ideas for the year. So we can still have canteen days, disco etc but all items needing to be purchased will be done via the school but the running of the day will go to the group of parents who have volunteered. Under no circumstances are we trying to cut out suggestions from Parents. 

Myth 3 - That the school will not tell parents what the money raised will be spent on.

Any fundraising event will have a clear outline of how money will be spent so parents will have the opportunity to opt in or out depending on how they feel about the suggested cause.

 The new committee will be made up of parents, Jackie and myself. We will meet once a term to discuss suggestions and organisation of upcoming events. 

As we move forward to 2021 we hope that we will be able to return to what I’m now calling a new normal, where we can finally welcome the wider community back onsite to celebrate learning with us.

Stay well and take care,

Love & Light

Lisa Gerrard

(on behalf of the St Bernadette’s staff & students)

 Attendance Rate:  86.7%  - To unpack this a little more, this means that 85.1% of our students have an attendance rate of 90% -100%. 

From the Assistant Principal...

Although we are coming to the end of the year, we might still have some challenges ahead. It is important in these situations that we respond with resilience and that we teach our children how to respond with resilience.  Resilience is the ability to cope when things go wrong, being able to bounce back, hold your head up high and move forward. It can be hard to teach this to our children and it can be hard to respond this way ourselves as adults!

As parents and teachers, modelling resilience ourselves is the most important way we teach children about resilience. When we face a challenge - from something fairly minor such as our footy team not winning to major life changes like moving house or the death of a loved one, it is important that we try and demonstrate that we can find positives in upsetting situations, we can talk to others to work through our problems and that we learn something from a negative situation. 

We encourage resilience in our children by:

Encouraging independence - let kids have a go and take a (controlled!) risk so that if they do succeed they’ll feel positive. If they don’t succeed, they can learn something for next time.

Having them learn about and express their emotions - it’s okay to feel upset when something does go our way but children should recognise that and learn how to move forward.

Develop and maintain good relationships with their peers and other adults - they’ll always have someone they can talk to and share their thoughts with. 

Mrs Willard
Assistant Principal  


Sunday 22 November 2020

REFLECTION by Dianne Bergant CSA

We have now come to the end of the liturgical year, the point that marks the transition from one period to another. Today we see that the kingdom of God is inclusive. Its embrace is as comprehensive as is the embrace of God. Criteria for membership are not based on obedience to the commandments or on conformity to ritual obligation, but on the bonds of love and concern.

What we do for others, we do for Christ, because Christ is identified with those in need. We very seldom see the face of the glorified Christ in the faces of the needy; it is more often the face of the disfigured Christ that is turned to us. We see his fear and his shame, his brokenness and sense of loss. As difficult as it may be to look into such eyes, it is precisely the needy with whom Christ is identified.

Having entered into the frailty of human nature, identified himself with the needy, and handed himself over to death, in the end Christ will have conquered all. It is a curious kingdom that he has won, a kingdom of the weak rather than the strong. He has turned the standards of the world upside down. He has shown that it does not take strength to ignore or to exploit the needy, but it does take strength to overcome our own selfishness in order to serve them. The kingdom that Christ hands over to God is a kingdom of love and care.

Year 4 RE

The students in Year 4 are participating in a Learning Cycle from the Draft New Religious Education Curriculum in Term 4, entitled “How is God Present in my Life?”. They have created these beautiful word clouds to help compare and contrast the notions of secular faith and religious faith.

By JohnLuke

By Sarah

By Veronica

By Lachlan

Jasmine I's Baptism

Altar Servers Roster Nov 21 2020 - March 21 2021



Important Dates for your diary

Term 4, 2020:

Kindergarten Orientation Thursday 3 December 2020

Students Last day of Term: Tuesday 15 December 2020

Term 1, 2021

Staff development day: Wednesday 27 January 2021

MAI Years 1 - 6: Thursday 28 January 2021

MAI Kindy: Friday 29 January 2021

First Day Term 1 2021 for Years 1 - 6 - Friday 29 January 2021

Kindergarten First Day: Monday 1 February 2021

Community of Learners

During the coming weeks we will begin the process of selecting our new Student Representative Council (SRC) members for 2021. Traditionally this is made up of 12 members, 8 from Yr 6 and 4 from Yr 5. These students will be chosen by staff and their peers via a ballot. The successful candidates will be announced in our last newsletter for 2020.

Some changes to our protocols

Year 6 end of year dinner: 

From this year the school will no longer be organising an end of year dinner for the Year 6 students. A couple of reasons include: asking staff to supervise students out of hours and that the event takes place in a licensed venue. 

This does not mean that a group of parents cannot take over the organisation of this event but it will not be a school run event and raise money etc. The only reason that I have not published this before now is due to the fact that up until fairly recently we were still getting conflicting advice on whether or not this event could take place.


Washing of the tubs:

This will no longer be done as it is unsafe.


Newly Added: 

Our gift to our Yr 6 students is on their last day when they will participate in a Motiv8 sport day. 


Things that remain:

  • A Mass at the end of the Year.

  • A gathering for morning tea in the Hall (Food provided by Year 5)

  • Viewing of the photostory

  • Awards 

  • Fun medals 

Kinder Orientation

Due to the easing of some of the Covid restrictions we will be able to have one day for Kindy Orientation. The date of this will be Thursday December 3rd between 9.30 - 11.30am. Due to covid restrictions we cannot have our usual guest speakers in the Hall but we will have a meet and greet downstairs near the Canteen. Here we will open the second hand uniform shop and offer some refreshments. We will also have a place to register your details to stay in contact with others in your child’s class

Class Contact Parents

I would like to formally thank our 2020 class contact parents for all that you have done to support our staff and parents throughout a very challenging year.

Some of the responsibilities of a class contact parent will include:

  • Liaising with the class teacher to share any upcoming news that is specific to your child’s class.

  • Organising a possible social catch up during the holidays to keep in touch with other parents in a relaxed setting.

  • Liaise and be a part of our new Parent Council. This will ensure that all parent voices are heard when it comes to organising or suggesting fundraising events. Thus every parent will have multiple avenues to hear about events.

  • Take a role in facilitating the class run event eg Canteen Day, Disco etc. 

If you are interested in being a class contact parent in 2021 please let us know via the school email address : attention to Lisa Gerrard.

School Contacts Book

Would you like to be on our school contact list for 2021??

Please fill out the form sent out via Skoolbag prior to the end of 2020 and return it to the school office.

Gentle reminders

Gentle Reminders:

Sending sick children to school: 

Please remember when your child is unwell, especially with cold or flu symptoms, that they will be sent home and can return to school once cleared by a doctor or when Covid test results are negative. These protocols are in place to protect all students, their families and staff.


Picking children up in the afternoon:

It has come to my attention that the following is occurring:

  • Children are being called up from the pick up area outside Kindy to a parent waiting across the road. The child subsequently ran across Cox Crescent while the drive through was in progress! A staff member actually had to jump out into the street to ensure the students safety. Should this continue the children involved will be asked to wait in the office for their parent to park and escort them safely to their car.


  • Parents pulling up in the drive through queue, then one parent jumps out, retrieves their child and overtakes all other cars. Should this continue the children involved will be asked to wait in the office for their parent to park and escort them safely to their car.


  • Parents coming to the Hall to pick up their children. This not only causes congestion and a lack of social distancing but it causes unnecessary interruptions and slows down the afternoon pick up process.

The safety of your children is paramount and we would appreciate your cooperation.

Zoom Assemblies

There will be a zoom assembly this week and the link will be shared via the normal channels.

Wacky Wednesday

Funds raised for the Year 6 Graduation Evening totalled $335.30. Thank you for your generosity.


In week 4, Stage 3 had the experience of going to Canberra. But, due to Covid 19 we were not able to go there physically, this was devastating. Until Mr Kensell and Mrs Brooker put all their effort and time towards a virtual tour. They spent their free time and hours so all of us could still have the learning and fun experience of Canberra. 

On the 5th of November 2020: This day was the first day of our Canberra tours. We had an entertaining and imaginative plane ride and a Qantas youtube video on the TV of what the real experience of a plane would have been like. Once we arrived in ‘Canberra’ we got to have a virtual tour to the Museum of Australian Democracy or Old Parliament House. The people running the tour were from the company MoAd. 

The person we were greeted by was a kind woman named Jessica. She was super nice and gave us the fun experience we deserved. We learnt about the House of Representatives and the Senate. We learnt about King George the Fifth and his statue located at the entry. And how we had to wear gloves so the heat and sweat from our hands didn’t ruin the bronze on the statue.

Unlike if we actually went to the Old Parliament House we saw rooms that are secretive. Such as the radio room. This radio room helped the local people hear the conversations made in the rooms. 

Then we went to the New Parliament House and were greeted by Andrew. He talked about the history of the New Parliament House and how it is derived from the Old Parliament house. We got to do a fun and educational activity. This activity was about making our own electorate. What we had to do was make up our electorate name, where we were going to do it and what we would work on in our electorate. The school day came to an end... well not for Stage 3. We got to stay at school until 6:30 and have sausage sandwiches for dinner!

6th of November 2020: This was the second and final day of our Canberra experience. Firstly we had a few activities and moved straight into learning about the Australian War Memorial. First, the guide talked about a boat from World War and the bullet holes through it. She then moved on and talked about the equipment the soldiers would have used in the war to help them. While this was happening our school bell went off singing the song al la la la la la bamba. 

We were also talking about a specific family that their sons went to war. We wrote a letter to them pretending to be their parents. After this we went and talked about the Unknown Soldier and how every country has one dead soldier and no one knows who it is. This then leads to the Eternal Flame and how it never blows out. This flame represents every soldier that lost their life the same as the poppy wall. The poppy wall had names of hundreds of soldiers in the war and this is how we remember them. 

After this very educational tour we went to the National Portrait Gallery where we learnt about Indigenous art and portraits of people. We even got to make some of our own portraits and had to show our cultural background. While this was happening we got ice blocks and were shown to our seats in the plane again. We had another Qantas video and we left Canberra but with an experience. The whole of Stage 3 had really good fun and we all learnt something new. 

We had the best experience ever. Thank you teachers!


Today the winning house for the first few weeks of Term 4 was announced. Congratulations to Clare for winning the second time this year. Their recognition time will be celebrated this week.

The token count to date is:





Clare Recognition Day

Clare will receive their recognition for winning the most tokens in the first half of Term 4 this Friday. As Clare has already won this year the students in the house colour got to choose from the second tier of recognition, which involved a food treat. The students voted on hot chips.

The PBS4L focus for the next fortnight is we care for property and the environment. At St Bernadette’s we look after our own belongings, those that belong to others and also those that belong to the school. It is a way in which we keep the environment clean and tidy, it shows respect and also that we are grateful for the belongings that we have been given.

Happy Birthday

6/11 - Adam K 

6/11 - Ashtyn C

8/11 - Scarlett T

10/11 - Christian M

12/11- Caleb L

15/11 - Brandon N

18/11 - Caroline Z

19/11 - Nolan J


Community Health Advice

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.