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​Newsletter Number 13 / Term 3 Week 9 2020

By | Uncategorized
From the Principal’s Desk
 Together we learn, lead and achieve.  

Dear Monty South Community,       
The final two weeks of Term 3 are drawing to a close and I am happy to say, each day brings more daylight hours and a little more warmth in the sun. Spring is truly here and immediately it makes you feel so much better.

As a team we have decided that our focus for the next two weeks of term will be the social and emotional needs of our students as well as having fun. We want to make sure we make those connections we talked about so much at the start of this term.

Staff and students are weary and I can only imagine how parents are feeling as they have taken on a job that most were not qualified to do; be a home teacher. So to take the pressure off everyone, we are looking to reduce the priority tasks, organise some fun activities and ensure there are more social and fun catch-ups via WebEX.

We are also starting to plan some celebratory activities for Term 4, with the first being a Footy Colours Day and a Book Parade. We had earmarked these to take place in the week beginning 19 October. However, this is now dependent on COVID-19 case numbers. We will keep you informed.
We are definitely planning for 2021 to be our ‘Big Bang’ year. We have already booked in Kaboom sports (a multi-age tabloid sports event) in the first few weeks of Term 1, to welcome all students back and really focus on making sure we connect and have fun. We have also booked in the Resiliency Project to work across a number of year levels and we will again our focus on connection and social and emotional needs. It is going to be a fun year.

Roadmap for schools
Yesterday the Premier delivered his press conference where he outlined his plans for the state moving forward and being able to ease Stage 4 restrictions.
Since then, the Victorian Government has released its plan for easing coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions. It includes the following decisions about school operations.

All schools will continue to provide remote and flexible learning for the remainder of Term 3, except specialist schools in rural and regional Victoria, consistent with current settings.

During the first week of Term 4, 5 – 9 October, remote and flexible learning will continue for all students, except in specialist schools in rural and regional Victoria.

VCE and VCAL students can only attend on-site for essential assessments during this week, including the General Achievement Test (GAT) on Wednesday 7 October.

On-site supervision for children of permitted workers and vulnerable students will continue to be provided consistent with existing guidelines.
From 12 October for schools in metropolitan Melbourne
Students in Prep to Year 2 return to full-time on-site schooling. The existing remote learning program will not continue for these year levels.

Students in specialist schools return to full-time on-site schooling. Schools can offer learning materials for students who continue to learn from home.
Year 11 and 12 students will now attend on-site schooling full time, and Year 10 students enrolled in a VCE or VCAL program will attend on-site for these classes.
Remote and flexible learning will continue for all students in Year 3 to Year 10, other than for children of permitted workers and vulnerable students.
Date subject to health advice
All students from Year 3 to Year 10 in metropolitan Melbourne will continue with remote and flexible learning. A date for the return of these year levels to face-to-face learning will be subject to further health advice.
During the staged return, outside school hours care will be available to students attending for on-site supervision and progressively for the relevant year levels returning to on-site learning.

Vacation care may operate during the school holidays but only for students who are eligible for on-site supervision at school in Term 3.
There will be further guidance for schools provided by the Department of Education, later this week, including a revised Schools Operations Guide for Term 4. We will certainly keep you updated as we go along the path to returning to school full time.
Grounds update
While you have all been off site, we have been working on our grounds and Year 6 area. There were a number of bricks that had been lifted up and stored when we were building near the portables.  We have used as many as we can creating steps outside the Year 6 rooms and also the outdoor Year 6 space. 
There have also been a number of plants replaced in the gardens that had been trodden on and mulch laid. We want to make sure we are looking good to welcome back our students in Term 4.
Victorian High Ability Programs.
Congratulations are extended to our Year 6 students Celine Rodwell, Judah Brady and Raph Hendry who have been selected to take part in the new DET Victorian High Ability Program.
The Victorian High-Ability Program will see high-ability Years 5 – 8 students across Victorian government schools participate in a 10-week virtual enrichment program.

Delivery will be through composite classes of students in Years 5 – 6 and Years 7 – 8, as follows:

  •  Primary mathematics for Years 5 – 6 students
  •  Secondary mathematics for Years 7 – 8 students
  •  Primary English for Years 5 – 6 students
  •  Secondary English course for Years 7 – 8 students

Celine, Judah and Raph have been selected to take part in the Primary English program which will focus on tasks that stimulate students’ critical thinking, problem solving and creativity – enriching their understanding of English. The program will not focus on accelerating students through core Victorian Curriculum content. They will certainly be challenged though.
We are so thrilled that they have been selected and we are very proud of them.  Wonderful effort guys! 
Aladdin Kids
The Performing Arts team plans to film at the end of this term was not viable once Stage 4 restrictions were put into place. The next plan was to turn the attention to see what was possible for Christmas or the end of Term 4.
They now realise with social distancing and restrictions still be in place they have very little time to pull together a piece that takes thirty hours minimum rehearsal. At this stage, we are thinking of what alternative performances we can do and Jude, Emily and Andy will keep you informed. 

It is indeed very disappointing but we will try and focus on finding something to do instead. It won’t replace the production but it will be something fun.

Diamond Valley community support
DVCS are available to support parents, families and other individuals who may require some additional support at this time.

Help is available by means of educational grants, food relief, transport assistance, prescription assistance, hygiene support, legal & financial counselling, tax help, referrals to specialist services and other support.  DVCS can be contacted on 9435 8282 or

National eSmart week 6-12 September
This week is eSmart Week which is run by the Alannah and Madeline Foundation. We are an eSmart school and usually would celebrate this week at school.

Jenny Hutchinson, our very clever ICT curriculum coordinator has planned some activities for every year level. With all the issues that we brought to your attention in our last newsletter with TikTok and Roadmaps and the posting of images without permission, we feel it is a very important issue.   So we are encouraging teachers to do the activities. 

Jenny will also provide teachers with some discussion questions such as, ‘Is your time between screens and other activities well balanced?’

Staff news
We were very saddened to hear of the death of Jess Head’s father last week and also Justin Shears’ father. We extend our sincere condolences to both families at this very sad time. 

I would also like to take the opportunity to thank Larissa Wilson who took over Jess Head’s class while she took leave to be with her father.  It gave Jess great comfort knowing her class were being well looked after.

Book recommendation
One of the more pleasant aspects of the COVID-19 lockdown has been more opportunities to read.  Reading for enjoyment and also to grow my knowledge and perspectives. This term, a book was recommended to me by a colleague from both a parent and an educator perspective.

The book is called ‘Everyday Resilience’ by Michelle Mitchell and aims to show every family and educator how they can nurture and develop resilience in children and adolescents. It talks of seven key traits-courage, gratitude, empathy, self-awareness, responsibility, self-care and contribution.

The author answers questions such as:
– How can I help my child be more confident?
– What do I say when my child is rejected by friends?
– How can I help a child who is struggling academically?
– What do I say when my child says, “I can’t“?
– How do I help an anxious child or a shy child find their voice?
– What can I do to help them discover their potential?

The book is recommended as a practical and simple to follow resource. 

Warmest regards,


Michael Carr Gregg presentation

By | Uncategorized

Hi all in our MSPS community

I am just sending through a link that I received today regarding a presentation for families from Michael Carr Gregg  on September 15th.  It can be found at:
He did another webinar  recently which was well attended with over 1200 participants.  From all reports it was very good.  Apparently, the presentations book out extremely fast and so I am sending it around today, hoping those that wish to attend will be successful. 

There have been no more updates from the Department regarding Term 4 at this stage.  I do know they have teams of people considering multiple factors, such as K-P transition and also Year 6 to 7 transition and student well being. As soon as we hear, I will let you all know.  Again, thank you for those that contributed to the remote learning survey Term 3, we have collated the results and  discussing with staff and school council next week.

Kind regards,
Leanne Sheean

Jess Head absence

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Dear parents and carers,
I write to inform you that Jess Head will be absent from her remote teaching sessions over the next few days possibly longer, as her father is gravely ill. 

Jess's father was recently diagnosed with cancer but unfortunately he has deteriorated markedly and the family have been called in to palliative care to say goodbye to him.  

I know you will join me and send our very best wishes and thoughts to Jess, her mother and extended family.

Kind regards
Leanne Sheean

​Newsletter Number 13 / Term 3 Week 7 2020

By | Uncategorized
From the Principal’s Desk
 Together we learn, lead and achieve.  

Dear Monty South Community,       
It is hard to believe that we are in week seven of Term 3 already.  I hope everyone is keeping warm in this rather cold weather we are experiencing. I am looking forward to spring and a little more sunshine.

Remote learning
Last week we sent out a survey in relation to remote learning.  We would like to thank everyone who has responded to the survey so far. It is now our task to collate all of your responses to see if the changes and adjustments we made hit their target.

Remote learning certainly has been a new experience for all of us and it is important that we work together to make the process easier and more purposeful for everyone.  As I have said previously if something is not clear for you, please do not hesitate to contact your child’s teacher through Seesaw or WebEx, or just call us in the office for support. We will always respond.

One of the biggest impacts the COVID-19 restrictions have had on all of us, particularly the students is the ability to make connections with each other. During the past week Jhye Burton and Jay Reynolds have set up clubs for the students to participate in. Jhye runs basketball drills, fitness clubs, lego club, social catch-ups and online games sessions for the Years 3 – 6’s and Jay runs storytime, show and tell lego clubs, social catch-ups and music/dance/rhyme/yoga sessions for the Prep to Year 2 students.

The level of engagement we have had so far has been wonderful and the students have responded well to these sessions.  These clubs will continue throughout Remote Learning 2.0.
TikTok is a video-sharing app which some of our students have been using during remote learning. Users can upload and share short videos of themselves lip-syncing to songs or acting out comedy sketches, and add special effects. They can gain followers (‘fans’) and browse other people’s videos.

The age recommendation is 13 and above. However, you don’t have to prove your age when creating an account, so younger children can still use it easily. It’s most popular with under-16s.
Our students have been excited to able to create some wonderful videos, but unfortunately it has recently come to our attention that some students have experienced issues with the use of TikTok. One student has had their account hacked by someone from overseas. This hacker has then assumed the student’s identity and used it to message others.  Another student has been accessing in appropriate websites.
Roblox is an online game that some students have been accessing at home as it isn’t a program permitted or accessible at school.   It is for ages 12+.  It is advertised as ‘the ultimate virtual universe that lets you play, create, and be anything you can imagine’. The precautionary warning we are giving is that some of our students have discovered its ability to allow for communication between people.
Attached to the newsletter you will find some useful Cyber safety advice which can be used as conversation starters with your children and tips on what you can do as a parent to help your child avoid these pitfalls.
Year 6 area
Those of you who have walked through the school ground or travelled along Grand Boulevard may have noticed that there are changes happening in front of the Year 6 classrooms. 

This section is being developed as a space for the Year 6’s to meet and spend time together.  There will be seating areas and lots of plants and the pavers that were taken up to make way for the new building will be re-laid.  Also incorporated into the area will be an outdoor table tennis table which is sure to provide the students with lots of fun.
Bush Block
Tara De Bondi has been working with a group from Haas and Gray who are Indigenous Horticulturists to remove weeds in the bush block particularly the woody weeds. This work will help to prepare the bush block for future planting of indigenous species rather than the invasive varieties that have previously been planted there. 

Cath Kingshott has also been assisting in this work. Both Tara and Cath have found it has been a fantastic opportunity to develop their own knowledge about the area which they can then pass onto the students.

Tara was very grateful for the assistance of the Ballock family whose house runs beside the bush block. They very kindly allowed Tara and the group to access water from their site.

Mental health in primary schools project
Montmorency South is one of 10 schools in the Mental Health in Primary Schools pilot project. The pilot will be delivered in partnership between the Department of Education and Training, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute and the Melbourne Graduate School of Education. The pilot will provide training and resources to support staff to understand and respond to mental health issues that affect primary school aged students. It will also focus on building strong connections between schools and local health services so that students and families are getting the support they need.

Leanne Sheean, Yo Robertson, Hayley Hender and Laura Johnstone have commenced their training. When they have completed their training sessions they will work with the staff.  

Professor Frank Oberklaid, from the Centre for Community Child Health, a department of The Royal Children’s Hospital said
“Primary schools are an ideal platform from which to provide mental health services because virtually all children attend school and teachers are in an ideal position to identify children with emerging or existing mental health issues and help put in place effective early intervention strategies.”
This is a great opportunity for Montmorency South.

Dear Year 3-6 performers and parents,

As I’m sure you’re aware, our plan to film at the end of this term can no longer go ahead with the extension of restrictions to the end of Term 3, at least.  I had hoped to turn our attention to see what was possible for an ‘Arabian Christmas’ at the end of Term 4. We now realise the social distancing restrictions may more than likely still be in place. Or, if lifted would not give us the time required, even modified, to pull together a piece that takes thirty hours minimum rehearsal together.

Apologies I have not contacted you earlier, as conditions out of our control have continued to change, as have our plans!

Our team hopes to make the best of a unique situation and this requires us to be creative and stay inspired.  We will keep you informed along the way.

Take care, Jude, Em and Andy.
Each night at sunset the world’s largest colony of Little Penguins walk up the beach in Phillip Island to their homes. As visitors are no longer allowed due to COVID restrictions Phillip Island Nature Parks will be live streaming the Penguin parade from 6pm Tuesday 25 August. The livestream will happen on their Facebook Page and YouTube channel. This free 30 minute stream will run nightly from Tuesday.  According to Phillip Island Nature Parks, this is perhaps the world’s first livestream of a natural wildlife event at a regular time.
Warmest regards,

Scholastic Issue 6
Hi everyone. Just letting you know that Scholastic Book Club issues 6 are now available.  You can go on their website to view the latest issue. If you do order from their brochure the books will have to be sent to your home, not to school. There will be a charge of $5.99. Hope you are all staying fit and healthy.
Love Clare Bear
CLC virtual tour
Virtual Tours are available on various dates by visiting
Year 7 applications for 2020 close on Friday 9 October.
Get active E-challenge
RHS sports, the company who supply our school uniforms have created an online challenge.
Games incorporating a mix of Throwing, Jumping and Running events.
Free music lessons
In the interest of keeping music alive during the Covid-19 crisis, DSE Music Tuition is giving access to a full term of both piano and guitar lessons – free to every student across Victoria, no catch, no conditions.
The lessons are streamed video lessons via our streaming platform, can be watched on any device (smart TV, desktop, laptop, tablet or phone) and include additional learning material (sheet music, audio files, etc).
Link to access free lessons: or call 0416 586 483
0416 586 483
Online chess tournaments
Northern Star Chess is offering an online program of online inter-school chess tournaments for Term 3. Students can enter individually or as a team. This Friday is your last chance to participate.
Available Events:
Format: 7 round Swiss, 10 minutes per player per game.
Tournament entry fee: $12 per player
Tournament Dates:
Friday 28 August – 1pm to 3.15pm (approx)
For more information:
Or, please contact Pearl 0407 072 250 or
Power of M – Music Mindfulness Movement is running free mini workshops every day for the duration of the lockdown to help keep families happy and healthy.
The workshops are 20-30 mins and include a different topic each day such as: Self care, kindness, nutrition, gratitude etc. 
Each session consists of: stretching, yoga, positive affirmations, a live performance of a song on the topic, relaxation breathing and meditation. 
The workshops run Live through the Power of M Facebook Page everyday at 12 noon Mon-Fri. 
To access the live workshop tune into Facebook at 12 noon and head on to the Power of M Facebook Page 
If you would like to receive a notification for the live session please like the page. 
A recap of the sessions is also available for on demand viewing post the Facebook live presentation as recordings on both Facebook and YouTube for those unable to tune into the live session.
The links are below: 
Facebook Page: 
YouTube channel:

Online art classes  Artists and instructors take the classes in real-time on Zoom.  Suitable for all ages.  $12.50 per class + gst.

Whitefriars Catholic College for Boys – virtual tours
Registration for Q&A sessions with Principal Mark Murphy or a virtual tour or a virtual tour with question time with staff & students please visit the Whitefriars website.

Food Relief Information
Red Cross, Brotherhood of St Laurence and the Department of Health and Human Services have implemented the Extreme Hardship Support Program to provide emergency financial assistance to people who are unable to access income support.
To be eligible for this program a person must:

  • live in Victoria, and
  • be unable to access Commonwealth income support (such as JobKeeper or JobSeeker) or the Victorian International Student Emergency Relief Fund, and
  • have zero or very limited income, savings or community support
  • be a temporary or provisional visa holder, or an undocumented migrant.

To apply for emergency financial assistance go to Applicants will need their passport and bank statements showing transactions for the last three months. From Wednesday it will also possible to call a dedicated phone line on 1800 855 240. Speak to someone at Red Cross if you do not have the right visa or bank documents.
FAQs and a fact sheet for community organisations are now available on the
This emergency financial assistance complements other Victorian Government hardship supports available to all people living in Victoria, including the $1500 worker support payment, the $300 test isolation payment, the and the rent relief grant.

DET update

By | Uncategorized

Dear parents, carers, and staff
As indicated yesterday, the Victorian Government announced that, on the advice of the Victorian Chief Health Officer, regional and rural Victoria will move to Stage 3 restrictions and metropolitan Melbourne will move to Stage 4 restrictions to slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).
These requirements apply to all schools across the government, Catholic and independent sectors and across all metropolitan Melbourne and rural and regional Victoria.
The changes to schools’ operations will come into effect from Wednesday 5 August, following a student free day on Tuesday 4 August, and are likely to apply until the end of Term 3.
As outlined in the Chief Health Officer’s advice on Friday, schools remain safe places for staff and students – but these steps are critical measures to reduce the movement of students and families across the state. 
There are implications for our school, and for families in our school community.
A summary of what the changes mean for schools in Melbourne is below.

  • Prep to Year 10 students will continue with remote and flexible learning.
  • The criteria for students that can attend on-site has changed as follows:
    • children whose parents are permitted workers. The Victorian Government will provide further advice about this over the coming days
    • vulnerable children in out of home care, children known to child protection and other agencies and children the school identifies as vulnerable
    • children with a disability who also fit one of the above two categories.


  • All Year 11 and 12 provision for both VCE and VCAL will move to remote and flexible learning.
  • The GAT will be rescheduled from Wednesday 9 September to Wednesday 7 October.
  • The schedule for the VCE examinations and release of results will remain as previously advised.
  • Further information about consideration of disadvantage and coronavirus (COVID-19) will be provided shortly.


  • On-site provision in specialist schools will only be available to children whose parents are permitted workers, and vulnerable children.


  • Tuesday 4 August will be a student-free day across Victoria to enable teachers, especially in rural and regional Victoria, to prepare for flexible and remote learning. For MSPS students at home, it will be a catch up day of their remote learning. 
  • Wednesday 5 August will be the first day of new arrangements for schools across Victoria
  • This is a day ahead of the statewide introduction of the Stage 3 restrictions in rural and regional Victoria, but will provide for a smooth transition and will enable as much continuity of learning as possible.


  • Schools will ensure sufficient staff are available for necessary on site supervision.
  • Staff not required for on site supervision will work from home.

I will provide an update soon about arrangements for remote and flexible learning at our school.
Thank you for your understanding and support.
Leanne Sheean

Term 3 Covid-19 update

By | Uncategorized

Dear parents and carers of MSPS

No doubt you have heard the news  that we are about to embark on further restrictions.  
At this stage, there has been no information sent from the Department of Education but I have been in touch with the North West Region office. They have advised me that tomorrow, Monday,  will be as per normal Stage 3 lockdown; so students who were going to attend onsite remote learning will  still be able to do so.  However, Tuesday will be a pupil free day. 
I am presuming that more information will be sent by the Department tomorrow and I will be able to update your further.

Newsletter Number 11 / Term 3 Week 2 2020

By | Uncategorized
From the Principal’s Desk
     Together we learn, lead and achieve.  

Dear Monty South Community,       
Welcome to Term 3, 2020 which is shaping up to be another exceptional term at MSPS.

Sincere gratitude is extended to all community members and in particular, to our students for persevering through our second stage three lockdown. Thank you for being cooperative, responsible and adaptable. This is helping to keep yourself, your family and your community safe. 

Remote learning
We have been very happy with the way the students have returned to remote learning and we are so proud of their amazing efforts to complete the work required and link in with their teachers as needed.

One staff member told me the work produced this week (from Prep to Year 6) has been a real “mood lifter”. For them, seeing students completing tasks with the help of their parents and siblings and having students complete tasks together over Facetime/WebEx has really made things seem little bit brighter. Some families are being so creative with this round of remote learning and it's made the staff member really appreciate being part of the Monty South community. 

Thank you
We’ve had some lovely feedback, which is always pleasing to receive.  Some has been around the change to the specialists’ tasks being sent out the day before the catch-up day, rather than at the beginning of the week, as was the case last term. The change came about for a number of reasons, but it does suit the specialist teachers. We have a lot of part time specialist staff who are only able to provide feedback to students on a particular day. Loading it the night before also makes it consistent with what is happening across the school.

However, if you have two or more children and you would like them to do the task together as a family, there is no reason why you can’t delay completing the task until later in the week when it has been delivered to all your children. We are more than happy to accommodate your situation. One thing we do know is there is no right or wrong way for families. It is important to do what best suits your situation. 

Video message
Jenny Hutchinson has prepared a video for students and families to help welcome everyone back to Term 3, 2020. This is intended to help refresh and motivate the students and prepare them for phase two of flexible and remote learning. You can see the video on the MSPS Facebook page.

Thank you Jenny for doing such a brilliant job.
Data reporting conferences
I would like to encourage all parents to take up the opportunity provided with Data reporting conferences this week, to discuss your child’s learning and the progression they have made.

As we have made these sessions longer because the staff are also reporting on Semester 1, we have a reduced number of timeslots. In some classes, not everyone will be able to find a timeslot, hence, we have opened up Thursday 30 July to parents for Conferences, from 9am to 5pm if needed. Nevertheless, Wednesday is still the official Conference day. Thursday will be a consolidation/catch-up day for remote teaching and learning.

As Wednesday 29 and Thursday 30 July fall under the remote learning guidelines, onsite supervision will continue to be available for those students who have previously been accessing it.

Face masks
As mandated last week, all staff at school are required to wear face masks in all areas of the school when not teaching. Students who attend primary schools for on-site supervision will not be required to wear a face mask. Children who are aged 12 by Year 6 will not be required to wear face masks as recommended by the Victorian Chief Health Officer. In some cases, students are choosing to wear one and that is fine by us.

Parents/carers must not enter the school unless wearing a face mask. The Department of Health and Human Services website has advice about face masks including the different types that can be used; how to make your own; how to safely wear one and how to safely remove one.

We are still going to hold virtual school assemblies every fortnight to again provide opportunities for our Year 6 school leaders. This will be a little more difficult as the students are mostly off site but we feel we can do it. Of course, with data reporting conferences happening this week, virtual assembly will not commence until, Wednesday 5 August.

Baby news
Congratulations to Harry Sullivan (PB) who has a new baby brother,Darcy Jack Sullivan, who arrived on July 8. Harry and his other brother Flynn were very excited to welcome the new arrival. Mum, Liz is home now and Harry, Flynn and dad, Luke are helping look after her and Darcy. 

Also some wonderful news for ex-staff member Amy Duckworth who is expecting her first child in September. I spoke to her last week and she is feeling fit and well. We wish Amy and Mick our very best wishes as they embark on this exciting time.
Warmest regards,
Captain's corner
Please see attached our current French edition of Captains corner.
Power of M workshop (ISO edition) free on Facebook live

Mon-Fri at 12pm for of 20-30 minutes, these sessions are mini workshops that cover varying topics such as: self-care, kindness, nutrition, gratitude etc.
Each session consists of: stretching, yoga, positive affirmations, relaxation breathing and meditation.
The links are below:
Facebook Page:  

Leap ahead Learning:
Pre-prep kinder program – limited vacancies for 2021!
Offering structured programs in literacy, numeracy, social skills, wellbeing / mindfulness. Japanese, gross & fine motor, oral language & all areas of general school readiness.   Ph: 0407 324 901