St Monica's Primary North Parramatta Newsletter

Term 2 Week 10 - 1 July 2020

Principal's Message

Dear Parents and Carers,

On Monday, we held our first whole school assembly in a long time and it was so nice to gather as a school community.  It felt strange not to have parents as part of our gathering, however, we are so grateful for technology and the ability for parents and grandparents to join us via YouTube.  There were a few technical difficulties, which we will iron out for next time.  We will hold our assemblies next term every second Monday afternoon at 2:40pm and will continue to stream these LIVE via YouTube.

This week brings Term 2 to an end and what a term it has been!  When we are stressed and busy with our fast-paced and hectic lives, we sometimes forget to be grateful for the little things, the big things, and all the things in between. 

What are you grateful for?

  • I am grateful to the staff of St Monica’s - their flexibility, professionalism and patience is to be commended and is appreciated enormously.  

  • I am grateful for the students of St Monica’s - their smiles each morning give me a reason to work a little bit harder.  

  • I am grateful for the St Monica’s parent community - their acceptance of me and their messages of thanks and support are humbling.  

  • I am grateful for my family and friends - their patience as I started a new job in a new school this year has been tested and their support is unending.

This is one of my favourite songs that I play to remind myself how grateful I am for having God in my life and for my many other blessings.

Have a safe and blessed holiday and take a moment to be grateful for all of your blessings.

Lisa Howell


Important Dates

Term 2       School ends 3:00 pm -  Friday 3 July 2020

Term 3       School resumes  - Monday 20 July 2020

                    Staff Development Day to be advised

Term 4       Staff Development Day -  Thursday 17 December 2020
                    Staff Development Day - Friday 18 December 2020


School Starting time

School start time is 8:50 am.  Gates will be closed after the morning bell. Students arriving after 8:50 am will need to be signed in at the office via Daking Street.  

Positive Risk Taking

Dear Parents,

A blind man had been waiting a while at a busy road for someone to offer to guide him across, when he felt a tap on his shoulder. “Excuse me,” said the tapper, “I’m blind; would you mind guiding me across the road?” The first blind man took the arm of the second blind man and they both crossed the road. After the event the first blind man, who was George Shearing the famous Jazz Pianist, commented: “What could I do? I took him across and it was the biggest thrill of my life!” 

This incident illustrates that sometimes taking a risk can help reduce our dependency on others and lead to the discovery of new capabilities and personal satisfaction. When it comes to our children and risk taking, we would not want them to step out “blindly” when someone taps them on the shoulder and offer them a “dare”. Part of raising our children is to help them to define boundaries. It’s a balancing act that requires knowing when to let children take risks in safe environments, as against taking risks in situations where they would endanger themselves or others. 

Taking risks allows children to understand the concept of trial and error. Success will certainly build self-confidence within our children and, inevitably, failure will not only make them acknowledge their boundaries, but will provide them with opportunities to cope with the negative emotions that accompany failure. Self- confident children have the inner fortitude to try new things, even if there is a possibility of failure. So, if we can control our urge to step in and provide solutions, we may witness our children engage in creative thinking; also, we might witness our children explore their own abilities and rejoice in their own accomplishments.

It’s possible, that we parents might guide our children away from challenging situations, so we won't be inconvenienced in some way. “However, children’s development involves taking risks and operating outside of their comfort zone. If we constantly prevent our children from taking risks, they may stagnate within their own comfort zone and impede their own development.” (David Eager. University of Technology, Sydney.) 

Positive risk-taking behaviour can be most beneficial to our children and the more practice they have with identifying risks and acting accordingly, the better prepared they will be to handle potentially dangerous situations and to solve problems in the future. Of course, our children need to know how to differentiate between good, healthy risks, such as bush walking and bad destructive risks, such as sitting endlessly with computer games and being a possible candidate for childhood obesity.

Risk-taking allows our children to try new physical activities, test the limits of their physical, intellectual and emotional development and gain mastery over their bodies. Risk-taking prepares our children for interaction with the real world beyond what might be our overprotective homes. If our children are not exposed to risk- taking, they could become fearful and timid children who lack confidence and decision- making skills. 

Peace and Best Wishes,

Mary-Anne Stenning

Assistant Principal

Unexplained Absence Letters sent home today

Dear Parents and Carers, 

Unexplained Absence Letters  (for partial and whole day absences) have been sent home today with your child.    You will only receive a letter if your child has an Unexplained Absence.

Absences between 24/03/2020 and 22/05/2020 have been recorded as Flexible  (During COVID 19 remote learning).  If your child attended school during this period but arrived late on any day, you will need to provide an explanation.

Please provide an explanation for all absences prior to 24/03/2020 and after 25/05/2020. 

Kindly complete the letter and return it to school by Friday 3 July 2020.  If we do not receive an explanation for your child's absence, it will be recorded as an Unexplained Absence on their attendance record. 

PBS4L End of Term 2 Awards

Congratulations to the following students who received Awards at our End of Term Assembly which was held on Monday 29 June.   The Assembly was livestreamed via YouTube.

Being SafeBeing RespectfulBeing a Learner
St Monica's Award 
(for perseverance)


Aiva BernardezJasper CorinMatina HaramisLottie Stewart
Year 1Koey MwangiHarshit SharmaKyra AdlakhaNaina Anandh
Year 2Skylar NoronhaAngus GrahamAmelia CoreraAlessia La Macchia
Year 3Pare NaderSelini TissathejaLucas AlvarezBraxton Cooper
Year 4Calista SorianoManuela SalibEva TranMia Siemsen
Year 5Kristian RomicL'Lysse PuyatAshton DardagosMonica Salic
Year 6Elizabeth TomanZi Han LinPeter Talampas Charli Meldrum

New PBS4L Reward System at St Monica’s

Our student reward system has had a facelift and our students are loving the changes!


Individual students receive a "bee" from teachers to promote and reward appropriate behaviour in the classroom and on the playground.  The bees are collected into a class jar or into the new class boxes in the playground.

Bees can also be earned in the library when borrowing & returning books and even when students visit the office and display respectful behaviour!

The grade/stage is rewarded as soon as they fill the jar or box - with bees given out freely and frequently, students can contribute to and enjoy a whole class reward often.

Some of the frequent class rewards given this week have been:

ES15 minutes early playtime at lunch
Year 15 minute game of Heads Down,Thumbs Up &
5 minute early mark for lunch
Year 210 minutes free choice sport
Stage 25 minute game of 4 Corners/ Kahoot
Stage 3Early mark for lunch

Some other great ideas for reward time might be - crazy sock day / jersey day / crazy hat day


Our assembly awards have also had a facelift & are now renamed and presented to students for Being Safe, Being Respectful, Being a Learner and a St Monica's Award. 

The recipients of these rewards are chosen by their classroom teacher each term to reward students who are consistently safe, respectful and a learner.

Mrs Rita Davino on behalf of the PBS4L Committee

Hillsbus Service Changes Commencing 4 July 2020

Due to Parramatta Light Rail construction, Route 600, 601, 603, 604, 606, 609, 625, 706 will operate through O’Connell Street. This may affect the travel of students from Term 3, 2020.

We remind students they must have a valid Opal card to travel on school buses, and must tap on and off morning and afternoon.

Monday-Thursday: 8.30am-8.50am  (OPEN TO ALL CLASSES)

Extra Borrowing Times for Classes:

Monday:     YEAR 2  Recess 

Tuesday:    YEAR 1   Lunch 

Wednesday: STAGE 2 & YEAR 5 Recess

Thursday:   ES1 & YEAR 6 Lunch (storytime)

We have a great range of new books in the library to suit all age levels

Please encourage your children to come & borrow -  

a ‘bee’ for their class reward jar is given when a student borrows a book and then another given when the book is returned!


‘Bookworm of the Term’ 

ES1 - Domenic Galati

Year 1 - Isla Siemsen

Year 2 - Sarah Talampas

Year 3 - Olivia Szymanski

Year 4 - Annabelle Boasiako

Year 5 - Tiara Arredondo

Year 6 - Parmida Foroutan

These are the students who have borrowed the most books in their class this term.

 They have won a book prize and will now have their name & face displayed on our Bookworm Farm in the library until next term!
Well Done!

Mrs Rita Davino, Library Assistant

Building Child Safe Communities - Volunteer Undertaking

Dear Parents/Carers 

In Catholic Education Diocese Parramatta (CEDP), we see parents and carers as partners in your child's learning journey. Parents and carers are encouraged to become involved in our schools in many important ways such as supporting classroom learning, being part of advisory groups, mentoring programs, coaching sporting teams and supporting other extra-curricular activities, canteen support and other kinds of help.

 A range of checks and undertakings are required for people who work for or provide services to CEDP. These checks reduce potential risk and form part of our strategy to build child safe communities.

CEDP has launched a new Building Child Safe Communities form and online training module that all volunteers are required to complete. 

The purpose of this training is to inform you of the standards of behaviour and other requirements that must be adhered to when volunteering for CEDP.

The undertaking should take no more than 5 minutes to complete and the training module approximately 10 minutes. Once the form and training modules are submitted, an automated email will be sent to you within two business days to confirm the status of your submission.

The undertaking form will expire within two years or when your Working With Children Check expires (if applicable), whichever is sooner.  At that time you will need to complete the undertaking form and training module again. You will receive an automatic reminder email when this occurs. 

Further information on the new online form and training module can be found at and clicking on About Us/Building Child Safe Communities.  Within the form you will also find help sheets and a video tutorial to assist you. 

Thank you in advance for your support.

Lisa Howell


If you wish to assist with school events, it is a mandatory requirement that you complete the Building Child Safe Communities (BCSC) form and Online Training Module prior to assisting.  

Once your form has been “Submitted”, the system will generate an automated email to  confirm the status of your submission within 24 hours.  All Volunteers need a BCSC status that is Approved to provide services to our school. 

You must provide your BCSC number to the school prior to assisting at an event.  

No Volunteer (parents included) will be granted permission to assist with a school event without a valid BCSC number. 

St Monica's Lifesavers

Thank you to our Lifesavers for Week 9 & 10.

For Week 7, we would like to thank: Charlize, Riana, Aimee Akiko, Siria, William, Ashton, Monica, Yiannis, Manson, Ashleigh, Theo, Theresa, Ruby G, Noah, Ryan, Elizabeth, Nika, Gabi, Alicia, Evan, Kobe, Yiannis, Manson, Michael, Madeline, Aaliyah and Ruby K.

For Week 8, we would like to thank:  Tiara, John, Lola, Gabbi, Max, Andrew, Kristian, Peter, Sanoy, Nathan, Theo, Zi Han, Evan, Kobe, Yiannis, Tiara, Riana, Noah, Liam, Alicia, Parmida, Sanoy, Peter, Theo, Sara, Menuk and Samuel.

Therese Coutinho and Lauren Hartz

Religious Education Coordinator, Leader of Learning

Lost Property

Has your child lost clothing at school?  It is easy to return items that are clearly marked with a child’s name but we have many items where the name is not very clear and some which do not have any name on them at all.

Please check that all your children’s belongings are clearly labelled so that they can be returned to your child (including lunch boxes and drink bottles).

Trial of the Draft New R.E. Curriculum in Term3

Dear Parents and Carers,

Religious Education in the Diocese of Parramatta has undergone much change in the last two years. Term 3 2020 marks the next step towards a new curriculum that will replace ‘Sharing Our Story’, the current curriculum that has been in place for over 20 years.

The process of developing a new approach, currently known as the Draft New Curriculum, has been a collaboration with students, parents, teachers, clergy and system leaders. This innovative and ambitious project has led to the development of Learning Cycles (one per term), that apply scripture and tradition in a meaningful way to the contemporary life of young people. This endeavour supports our students to grow in faith and understanding through prayer, reason and action in daily life. 

In Term 3, using experiential learning through student inquiry, students in all Learning Stages, across St. Monica’s, will engage with a Learning Cycle (unit of work) from the Draft New Curriculum. In preparation for the 2021 implementation, teachers are continuing to participate in extensive theological formation and professional learning.  

This is an exciting opportunity for our faith community of St. Monica’s to continue to honour our commitment to empowering all our young people to discover a meaningful and flourishing life. 

We look forward to sharing this journey with you throughout the term.

Therese Coutinho

Religious Education Coordinator

Keeping families and children well – COVID-19 Bulletin

Please click here to find the latest COVID-19 bulletin from the Western Sydney Munch & Move and Live Life Well @ School team.  This will be the final bulletin for Term 2.  The bulletin has been created to support your staff,children and families throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. It contains helpful information about the coronavirus (COVID-19) as well as tips for maintaining health and wellbeing during this time. This issue has information specific to the school holidays.

School Banking resumes in Term 3

Due to COVID-19 guidelines, School Banking was temporarily ceased. We are now able to advise that School Banking will resume in Term 3.  Students are reminded to bring their Deposit Books to school on Wednesday.  Banking is processed on Wednesday mornings.  Parents are reminded that Foreign Currency cannot be accepted.   Any Foreign Currency received will be returned in your child's Deposit Book. 

Thank you!

Thank you to the Parent Involvement Committee (PIC) who organised the Pie and Sausage Roll Day for students and staff last Friday 26th June.  Thank you to our parent helpers: Trish Forsyth, Kim Graham, Joy Munda Cruz, Min Chen, Emmeline Yongsiri, Anne Doolan, Tiff Cooper and Vanessa Talty who assisted on the day.

Kiss ‘n’ Ride

Our students’ safety is our priority.  Please follow these procedures to ensure all students are safe in the morning and the afternoon.

MORNING 8:20 - 8:50am

  • There are 2 gates open in the morning - the hall gate and the playground gate.  2 cars can drop off children at the one time - one at each gate.  If you are the first car (at the hall gate), please move forward so that the 2nd vehicle can approach the playground gate.

  • Students are to exit out of the vehicle on the driver’s side ONLY.

  • Parents ARE NOT to get out of their car.  If your child is unable to get themselves out of the car with their bag, please park.

  • An extra staff member will be on duty each morning from 8:30am to monitor this procedure from Monday.

AFTERNOON 3:00 - 3:30pm

  • From Monday, we will revert back to Kiss ‘n’ Ride commencing at 3:00pm for all students.  I strongly encourage parents to delay their pick up times to reduce traffic on Daking Street.  If too many people arrive at 3pm and the traffic is considered unsafe, we will need to consider other options once again.  

  • Parents and students are directed to Bay 1, 2 or 3.  Please do not move from your bay until the car/s in front have moved off.

  • Students are to enter the vehicle on the driver’s side ONLY.

  • Parents ARE NOT to get out of their car.  If your child is unable to get themselves in the car with their bag, please park.

Thank you to the majority of parents who continue to adhere to these safety procedures.

School Fees Relief

Thank you to those families who have paid their fees. We understand that many families are affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in terms of loss of income. Please do not hesitate to contact us as there are many ways that we can provide support to families. 

Fee Relief information and procedures to apply for Fee Relief can be accessed by clicking this link.

Alternatively you may contact Mrs Lata Rebello, School Finance Officer on 8832 4100 who will be able to assist you.   All conversations will remain strictly private and confidential.

Welcomeasy Winter Menu

Welcomeasy's new Winter Menu is now available. 

Parents can order student lunches online.  Lunches are delivered to school each  day.


Uniform Supplier - Oz Fashions

All school clothing requirements are available for purchase through Oz Fashions  

 Oz Fashions location:   115-127 Parramatta Road, Granville                           Phone:  9897 3121

 Opening Hours:        Monday-Friday   9:00am - 5:30pm                         Saturday  9:00am - 4:00pm

 Parking is available on site.    

The SkoolBag app is the easiest way keep up with school events, last minute notices, newsletters and all school communications.