​Newsletter Number 1 / Term 1 Week 2 2020

By February 5, 2020Uncategorized

From the Principal’s Desk

Together we learn, lead and achieve.  

Dear Monty South Community,       
Welcome to our new school year and what a wonderful year it will be! You may be reading this as a new member of our community or you may be returning for another sensational year at our fantastic school! Wherever you are in your MSPS journey – welcome!

I hope the holiday period was a happy, relaxing and enjoyable one and that everyone had the opportunity to spend valuable time with family and friends. This is what life is about.

This is our first full week at school and so far, it has been great in every way. There is a calmness around the school, mixed with the excitement of starting a fresh new year. All of our students have happily re-engaged with their friends and are eagerly making new ones! There have been smiles everywhere, laughter and great chatter, indicating they are happy to be back at school.

Last Friday, our new Preps showed great confidence as they happily made their way into the new building down stairs, with school uniforms almost bigger than some of them! We welcomed 88 new Preps to the school.
This year with the new building, playing fields, sensory garden and car park complete, we are looking for a more settled year. As the year unfolds you will be amazed at the wealth of opportunities and activities that will surround you. All this is aimed at continuing to strengthen and enrich our school community. The greater your involvement in your school, the greater the personal rewards will be.

We begun the year with a Prep ‘Welcome BBQ – changed to an icy pole evening’ and we have planned Community Building programs in all classes, student reporting conferences, photo Day, Prep Welcome assembly Wednesday 4 March, Carlton Respects program in Years 5/6, Melbourne City Robots program in Year 5 and a chess tournament coming up for starters. Then of course, there is our school fete, on Sunday 15 March.

We could not wish for more in regard to our fantastic children, the outstanding and devoted staff and the commitment from our ever-supportive parents! Together we will share a great year.

A big welcome to our new and returning teaching and Education Support staff: Melanie Townson (Year 1), Eliza Crellin (Year 5), Nicholas Crowe (Year 5), Hayley Hender (Year 6), Michael Tindale (Year 5 and Learning support), Chelsea Ross (Learning Support), and Lachlan Holmes (Specialist PE). I am most fortunate to work with the finest staff imaginable.

There is a sad note for us though in that we will be saying goodbye to Amy Duckworth who has been the successful applicant for PLC Teaching Practice Instructor – Leading teacher, at the North West Regional office. She will be commencing her new role on Monday 17 February. Amy has always been a dedicated and passionate practitioner and we are not surprised that her talents have been recognised by the region. We will miss her but we thank her for her contribution to our school and in particular, her work as a Professional Learning Communities Link leader for our school. We wish her the very best for a continuing successful career.

To keep our community up-to-date with school news and events, I encourage you to check Compass as it is our main form of communication. We also send out a weekly Compass email with information and links to the latest news and events at our school. All calendar events will be on Compass and the website. Additionally, we have information on the website and we have Facebook and a Twitter account for social media posts.

Our MSPS Parents and Friends group also have their own Facebook page. Please give those pages a “like” and share them with other Monty South families you know.

As you may be aware, the situation regarding the emerging outbreak of novel coronavirus has continued to evolve.

Over the weekend, the Commonwealth’s Chief Medical Officer and Victoria’s Chief Health Officer recommended a stronger precautionary approach to managing coronavirus for travellers returned from mainland China (not including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) from 1 February 2020.

This recommendation is that parents/guardians/carers should ensure that any children returning from mainland China (not including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) who were in mainland China on or after 1 February 2020 is isolated at home and should not attend school until 14 days after they were last in mainland China.

This recommendation does not apply retrospectively. It applies only to students who were in mainland China on or after 1 February 2020.
The existing advice remains that parents/guardians/carers of students should ensure that any student is isolated at home and should not attend school for 14 days:

  • following exposure to any confirmed novel coronavirus case; or
  • after leaving Hubei Province.

If you think your children are showing relevant symptoms, please call the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to discuss further actions on 1300 651 160.

DHHS has developed fact sheets in English and Simplified Chinese which include the latest information and advice.

Additional advice and information on the steps to take can be found on the coronavirus web page which also includes advice on:

  • continuity of learning for students who are not attending school
  • international students and families hosting
  • international travel
  • maintaining good health hygiene at school
  • health promotion posters and materials
  • information, resources and contacts related to coronavirus.

Reporting conferences
Soon you will receive information via Compass about parent/ teacher interviews or as we refer to them Reporting Conferences for all students in Years 1-6 to be conducted the week commencing 17 February. These meetings are designed to provide the opportunity for you to meet your child’s teacher and share any relevant information, as well as for the teacher to show you the areas your child’s learning will be focused on.  This will be based on data collected from the end of last year and will guide the initial Individual Learning Plans.
School Council
The School Council is composed of parents, teachers and the Principal. All school councils in Victoria operate under the Education and Training Reform Act 2006. Each school council is established by an Order of the Minister for Education, which specifies the council’s membership, size and configuration, its objectives, powers, functions and accountabilities and the role of its executive officer who is the principal. The school council has particular functions in setting and monitoring the school’s direction.
School councils have three main responsibilities:

  • Finance – overseeing the development of the school’s annual budget and ensuring proper records are kept of the school’s financial operation.
  • Strategic Planning – participating in the development and monitoring of the school strategic plan.
  • Policy Development and Review – developing, reviewing and updating policies that reflect a school’s values and support the school’s broad direction outlined in its strategic plan.

The MSPS School Council Meetings will be held on the second Tuesday of the month and the final meeting of the 2019 Council will be held in the staffroom at 6.30 pm on Tuesday 11 February, 2020.
The terms of office of the following members of our School Council conclude at this meeting after two years of serving on Council.
Parent Members                                   
Nghiem Tran – Vice President
Jane Plunkett
Shayley Holland
Jenny Vergers
Department of Education and Training Members 
Mandy Redfern
Amy Duckworth
I would like to take this opportunity to also acknowledge all of the above for their contribution to School Council and sincerely thank them for their time, effort and dedication to Montmorency South PS over the last two and more years.  The school is noted for its community feel and the work by this group of people has ensured that this reputation continues. We are extremely grateful to them.
After our final meeting we will be calling for nominations to fill positions on the new 2020 School Council. The above members can opt to renominate for another term or resign. 

Sun smart Hats
It is school policy that students are expected to be wearing their MSPS Primary School hats when outside for sport, lunch and recess. This is school policy as set by our School Council after recommendations from the Department of Education. The policy is in place from 1 September to 30 April. If your child does not have a Monty South Primary School sun hat, they can be purchased from the uniform shop. Please support us in supporting your child by making sure that your child comes to school with appropriate protection. 
Mobile phones and private property
As you may be aware, the Victorian government announced a new mobile phone policy that will require students to switch their phones off and securely store them away during the school day from Term 1, 2020. Thus, when emergencies occur, parents or carers should reach their child by calling the school office.
The policy is designed to support teaching and learning in an environment that is free from unnecessary distractions, disruptions and student inattention caused by the urge to check their phones. While it is more targeted at secondary students, it is becoming more and more relevant to primary school students particularly in the senior levels.

Our new mobile phone policy was approved at School Council last December and reflects Government’s announcement, as well as the needs of our own community. If you have any concerns or questions regarding the new policy, please do not hesitate to contact me at school on 9439 6201. Please note, the policy does outline some exceptions to this policy.

The finalised policy is available for viewing on our website. Additional information regarding the policy is available on the Department of Education and Training’s website.

Private property items brought to school by students (including balls, bicycles, skateboards and scooters) are not insured and the school does not accept any responsibility for their loss or damage. We advise that all items brought to school are named.
Harvard Data Wise
In the week prior to school starting, Daniel Jacobs, Dale Weston and myself attended a Harvard course at Bastow Institute in North Melbourne. It was a very full on week and we were required to be at the course from 8am until 5.30pm. A combination of visiting lecturers from Harvard and Australia took the sessions and challenged us in our thinking.

We learnt so much regarding school improvement processes and found that the biggest challenge for us was how to bring back our understandings to the school community.

This year will be a year of school review, so what we have learnt from the Harvard course will be invaluable to help us on that journey.
I wish everyone a magnificent year and look forward to working closely with our community.

Wishing everyone a truly wonderful 2020.

Warmest regards,

Year 6 Uniforms 2020:  Additional orders
The RHS website will be open for ordering Year 6 uniforms 10 – 21 February. At closure of the online ordering, please allow six weeks for the order to arrive. 
Photo day
Student Photos will be taken on Friday 14 February.

Your child will receive a photo envelope from their teacher containing details about the photo packages available, how to order and payment details.

There are several payment methods. Online payments are easy to make. Go to http:\\www.advancedlife.com.au and use our school code WKQ FQE 54C

If you don't use online ordering, photo envelopes must be brought on photo day and handed directly to the photographer (not to the office or any teacher). Photo envelopes are not required if online ordering has been used.

Students must be in full school uniform for photo day.

All students will have a portrait photo taken, regardless of whether parents wish to purchase a photo package or not.

Parents can arrange to have a family portrait taken with siblings if they wish but must obtain a special sibling envelope from the office, or order online.
From the School Nurse

We request your assistance in attempting to reduce the spread of head lice at school. Currently there are no reported cases of head lice but we know that the best way to avoid infestation is early detection and treatment. Please find attached some advice from the Royal Children’s Hospital about how to detect and treat head lice. It is important to note students with head lice need to be excluded from school until the day after treatment has commenced. If your child has a case of head lice please report it to the School Nurse, Victoria Hall, as soon as possible.
We also request your assistance in keeping our students and staff healthy by reducing the spread of illness. To prevent further spread of illness, we ask that if your child is unwell you keep them at home until they are well. We also ask that parents talk to their children about washing their hands after using the toilet and before eating as well as encouraging them to sneeze or cough into their sleeve. If your child has an infectious disease please report it to the School Nurse, Victoria Hall, as soon as possible.
Keeping us advised of illness is very important as we have a number of immunocompromised students at the school.
Your assistance in helping to keep our students and staff happy and healthy is greatly appreciated.
Kind regards,
Victoria Hall – School Nurse
Phone: 9439 6201

Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Kitchen classes
 An invitation to join your child in their kitchen class, Term 1.
The kitchen program relies on the generosity of parent and community volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering and helping with the kitchen sessions, we would love to hear from you. Parents, grandparents, relatives and interested people from the community are very welcome.
Please contact: Cathryn Hulme (Kitchen Specialist) 0419 322 782
3A Tuesday 12.30 to 2.20 – 11 Feb, 25 Feb, 10 Mar & 24 Mar
3B Thursday 9.00 to 11.00 – 13 Feb, 27 Feb, 12 Mar & 26 Mar
3C Tuesday 12.30 to 2.20 – 18 Feb, 3 Mar & 17 Mar
3D Thursday 9.00 to 11.00 – 20 Feb, 5 Mar & 19 Mar
4A Friday 9.00 to 11.00 – 14 Feb, 28 Feb, 13 Mar & 27 Mar
4B Monday 9.00 to 11.00 – 17 Feb, 2 Mar & 16 Mar
4C Thursday 12.30 to 2.20 – 20 Feb, 5 Mar & 19 Mar
4D Tuesday 9.00 to 11.00 – 18 Feb, 3 Mar & 17 Mar
5A Tuesday 9.00 to 11.00 – 11 Feb, 25 Feb, 10 Mar & 24 Mar
5B Wednesday 12.30 to 2.20 – 12 Feb, 26 Feb, 11 Mar & 25 Mar
5C Monday 12.30 to 2.20 – 17 Feb, 2 Mar & 16 Mar
5D Wednesday 12.30 to 2.20 – 19 Feb, 4 Mar & 18 Mar
5E Monday 12.30 to 2.20 – 10 Feb, 24 Feb, 9 Mar & 23 Mar
6A Thursday 12.30 to 2.20 – 13 Feb, 27 Feb, 12Mar & 26 Mar
6B Wednesday 9.00 to 11.00 – 19 Feb, 4 Mar & 18 Mar
6C Wednesday 9.00 to 11.00 – 12 Feb, 26 Feb, 11 Mar & 25 Mar

Please note that you can view your child’s time table via compass.

Monday afternoon chess club is back for Term 1 in 2020!
The one hour sessions will be held on Mondays at 3.30pm from 3 February through until 23 March in the Year 6 rooms in the BER.
The cost is $160 (inc gst) per child and students can now be easily enrolled online at: https://ku.zone/management/programs/program_timetable/727?collapse=1&frame=weekday
Upcoming chess tournament
Venue:       St Bridget's Primary School
                  36 Sweyn St, Balwyn North
Date:         Tuesday 3 March, 2020
Time:         9:30am – 2:15 pm (approx)
Cost:          $25 per player (paid at the event)
Qualify:      NSC Primary Open state final (top 30% overall) and Primary Girls state final (top 30% girls)

RSVP: to be sent to montmorency.south.ps@edumail.vic.gov.au by February 15 for registration.
Violin lessons
Violin lessons will again available at school on Friday. Enrolment information can be collected from the office.

Dates for your diary:


Monday  10 February – Friday 20 March  

  • Year 5 City Robots Program

Friday 14 February

  • School Photo Day

Monday 17 February – Wednesday 19 February

  • Semester one reporting conferences – details on Compass.

Wednesday 4 March

  • Preps commence full time
  • Prep welcome assembly (more information to follow

Thursday March 4

  • Carlton Respects program for years 5 & 6 running on a Thursday for 4 weeks (please note the change of date) 

Sunday 15 March

  • School Fete

Looking for something to do outside of school?

Eltham Junior Football Club:
Registration Day including Jumper fittings / Training tops / Merchandise / Mouth Guards for boys under 9s to 17s and Girls under 10s to 18s.  February 9, 10am – 2pm. Panther Place Eltham. All new players welcome. To register www.elthamjfc.com.au or phone: 0438 778 325.

SealPony Football:
Sunday Mornings from 8 March.  Registrations 10 – 11am March 1 James St Reserve Heidelberg Heights.  www.sealpony.com.au ph: 0415 388 028

Eltham College open day:
Saturday 29 February, 9.30am – 2pm – Register online at elthamcollege.vic.edu.au/open-day


Newsletter attachments:

  • Living with Autism – 6 week parent program being run in Eltham by Anglicare
  • Year 7 scholarship – Eltham College
  • Headlice advice
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