Apr 29, 2020
In This Challenging Time Prayer
In this challenging time Lord Jesus Christ, our true physician and healer, be merciful to us and bring us your aid in these troubled times. Heal all our sickness and every affliction of your people. Drive out our infirmities of soul and body; free us from all disease and especially from this pestilence.
We place in your gentle heart the elderly, the frail, people with disability, children, young people and families, our indigenous peoples, those who are poor, lonely and isolated. As you walk with us, free them from fear, and give us patience and hope together with our loving care. In your mercy deal also with the causes of our pitiful condition, that in curing our lack of faith and spiritual weakness, you may also remedy our bodily ills. We place our trust in you, the risen Lord, who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Welcome to Term Two. As you are aware, the last six weeks have been an incredibly challenging time for everyone. The COVID-19 virus has impacted on every aspect of our daily lives. Education has been no exception. I do want to thank you for your ongoing support and commitment to Our Lady’s Assumption School. We, as a staff, are very excited to see the children attend today and are looking forward to when the rest of the school community members return.
I would like to remind you that Our Lady’s Assumption School is open for your child to attend if you so choose, and we welcome their attendance. I hope, by now, you would have completed the attendance survey sent out recently. As also mentioned in our previous correspondence, you can change your mind at any time. The recent advice from the WA Chief Health Officer, Dr Andrew Robertson, confirms that the risk of transmission of the virus in the school setting is low. With the stringent cleaning protocols implemented late Term 1, and explained in a letter sent out recently to all families, we believe OLA is a controlled, clean and safe environment. Of course, you need to make an informed decision about whether you wish to send your child to school at this time.
To ensure that we respect whatever decision you make about your child’s attendance, and to enable equity for all students, our teachers will be delivering the curriculum. If your child is attending school, students will be taught by their classroom teachers using the work packs prepared prior to the end of Term 1. This means that whether your child is physically attending school or working from home they will be provided with the same teaching and learning opportunities, to the best of our ability. Teachers will get to students working from home as quickly as they can during the day.
There has recently been public and media attention regarding fees in Catholic schools and a suggestion that parents should receive discounts. I would respectfully like to make the following points:
- Parents have been guaranteed that their child’s place at Our Lady’s Assumption School is guaranteed regardless of a parent’s financial situation. I have already provided you with information regarding fee relief and information regarding the Health Care Card discount scheme. I encourage you to contact Karen Meleca at firstname.lastname@example.org directly if you have any concerns regarding school fees. Any such arrangements are, of course, confidential.
- Our Lady’s Assumption School will be refunding/crediting families the cost of any events or activities that you have been charged for and which are now not occurring, however we still have three terms to go until the end of the year and events or activities may still be going ahead at a later date. Once a decision has been made to cancel and not postpone an event, the cost will be refunded.
- All members of our wonderful staff have continued to work very hard and countless hours to support your child’s education and prepare their year level’s curriculum. You will understand that they have continued to be paid for their work. We rely on your school fees to assist us in meeting this significant ongoing financial obligation.
- Please be assured that our annual fees and charges are set at the lowest possible level to balance our yearly budget. All Catholic schools are not-for-profit, which means that if there are any surplus funds left at the end of any year, they are automatically used to offset future fee increases and/or fund future improvements for our students, including equipment and facilities.
We are currently planning for this arrangement to be in place for the first two weeks of the term with a review taking place until on the 11 May. However, as you know this situation is fluid and we will continue to respond to health and government advice.
Our staff are missing the vibrancy and excitement of having all our students at school and we are looking forward to the time, hopefully in the not too distant future, when we will see a full return to our physical school site by all our students.
As communicated previously, and directed/advised by CEWA and the Department of Health, parents and caregivers (and visitors) are not permitted on school property other than to drop off or pick up their children from the assigned drop off/pick up points.
Staff members will be on duty at these various locations and will take the children to their classrooms (Students in Years 3-6 will be permitted to walk over themselves to their classrooms). All teachers will be in their classrooms to welcome their students and prepare them for the learning to occur during the day.
The three assigned drop off / pick up points are:
- Chester Ave gate
- Flag pole gate (pedestrian access via bitumen)
- Early childhood gate (pedestrian access via bitumen)
- Kindergarten – Year 1 Students
Will be escorted to the Early childhood gate. Parents are requested to wait on the bitumen area (Church carpark).
Kindergarten and Pre-Primary children will be collected from their parents by staff from those classes to make the transition as smooth as possible.
- Year 2 – 3 Students
Will be escorted to the Flag pole gate. Parents are requested to wait on the bitumen area (Church carpark).
- Year 4 – 6 Students
Students will make their way to the Chester Ave gate Parents are requested to wait outside the school grounds.
NB: If you have children in a number of different year levels, please advise your older children which collection point you will be at so you can collect all of your children from the one meeting place.
We understand that this may not be ideal, but also request that parents try to adhere to social distancing measures.
As we wait patiently for schools and life to return to normal, we will continue to offer our students the very best teaching and learning opportunities possible, whether they are at school or home, to the best of our ability.
Term 2 Staffing
Due to staff members taking personal leave, because of the COVID-19 pandemic and maternity leave, a number of staffing changes have been made to the current OLA staffing. Ariana Rosso, an early childhood specialist, has been employed in Pre-Primary M as Ella Galipo’s replacement. Ella has taken maternity leave and is expecting her second child very soon. Ciaran Allsop has been redeployed to Year 5, replacing Bruno De Pietro, who is currently on sick leave until the end of the term. Brittany Mills, a Physical Education specialist, has been employed to replace Ciaran as the PE specialist, until the end of the term. We welcome Ariana and Brittany to OLA and thank Ciaran for accepting the Year 5 teaching role until the end of Term 2.
It was a strange feeling last Saturday not witnessing the parades and the traditional Anzac Day AFL game between Collingwood and Essendon. Although we have not celebrated the occasion as a whole school at OLA, we do, however, pay tribute to those who have served this great nation of ours. The flags at our school will be flown at half-mast this week to commemorate the lives of those lost to war or who have represented their country in war. ‘Lest We Forget’
Nell Gray Uniform Information (COVID-19)
Please refer to the attached flyer from Nell Gray about their opening hours. Our winter stock has arrived if you would like to purchase these items. Please note, Nell Gray are in the process of updating OLA’s online store so please check their website regularly if you would like to purchase items online rather than on the phone or in-store
Best wishes to all members of our wonderful community.