Principal’s Report – 2019 Issue 09

Dear Parents

Infant Jesus School ~ Strategic Plan 2019 – 2023

At Infant Jesus School, each child is recognised as a precious gift from God with their own unique talents and abilities. In recognising this, we provide a Catholic environment that nurtures this individuality, while enhancing a love of learning. We #ExpectGreatThings from all in our community and in doing so, aspire to be a world-class Catholic school where students and staff flourish.

It is with pleasure that I present our Strategic Plan 2019 – 2023 which will guide the next stage of our journey towards this aspiration. All families will receive a copy of the new Strategic Plan this week.

In formulating this Strategic Plan, the School Board and staff have assessed many features of the school’s journey to date – where we have come from, how well we are going as a school and what are the emerging challenges, trends and opportunities likely to be faced in the future.

The feedback we have received through this process suggests that we are performing well and are held in high regard, both in Western Australia and internationally. But, as the renowned author, Jim Collins suggests, ‘good is the enemy of great’ and so as A LEADing Learning School, we strive for even more.

The learning program we offer at Infant Jesus School provides a broad and diverse range of educational experiences so that every person can enjoy achievement and success. At the same time, we are cognisant of the new Strategic Directions of the Catholic Education Commission of WA (CECWA) and their call to be Catholic schools of excellence, Pastoral Catholic communities, Accessible, affordable and sustainable schools and to ensure Christ-centred leadership is evident. Knowing this, our Strategic Plan sets out the desired outcomes, goals and the strategies, to bring these about over the next three years. The plan is to:

  • Build on our strong foundations
  • Identify priorities that will advance our aspiration.

The plan recognises that there is much research indicating the positive, long-term effect of quality early learning on the educational, social and health outcomes of children in later life. A focus on Kindergarten to Year Two, early intervention where required, and providing wrap-around support services, is therefore a strong element in this plan.

Similarly, ensuring that the breadth of opportunities for our talented students as they progress through the primary years is also a focus. It should be noted that there are a number of very successful programs and initiatives at the school that are not referred to in this plan. These will continue. This document highlights only the areas we are targeting for additional attention and focus.

I look forward to continuing to work in partnership with parents as we embark on this plan and the ongoing provision of an outstanding, Leading Learning School in the Morley area and Catholic Education Western Australia.

Our four priorities align with the strategic imperatives of Catholic Education Western Australia and will influence the work we do as a school (further detailed explanation is contained within the Infant Jesus School Strategic Plan);

    Contemporary models of Gospel leadership that are inclusive, flexible and responsive to the increasing requirements of Church, governments and society.
    Effective, contemporary pedagogy and mission-inspired practice and outreach.
    Inclusive communities welcoming and supporting students and families with diverse learning and social needs.
    Responsiveness to the diverse needs of students and the surrounding communities.

I take this opportunity to thank all people that were involved with the development and formulation of this Strategic Plan; the School Board, P&F Executive, School Staff, Students and the School Leadership Team. Many thanks to all for your efforts and input into this process and for assisting and guiding with the direction of our school.

Grandparents Day 
What a fantastic turn-out we had for Grandparents Day last Friday. We had over 340 responses to attend the Liturgy and morning tea. It was a wonderful celebration of a very important group within our school, “Our Grandparents”. Many thanks to the students and staff involved in organising and coordinating this celebration. A special “Thank You” to Mrs Fran Ienco for organising and preparing the delicious morning tea.

School Uniform 2020
All parents should have received a letter from me outlining some of the changes we are making to the uniform from the beginning of 2020. Please read this letter carefully as there are some changes to the school uniform and parents need to consider the current and future expectations of your child’s uniform.

Some of the changes include:

  • upgrade our boys’ shorts and trousers from grey to navy blue
  • a newly designed Girls’ summer dress which will give our school a unique and bespoke look
  • a new school faction colour polo (in addition to the compulsory white School Polo)
  • implementation of a reversible school/faction hat
  • newly designed Pre-Primary polo
  • an Infant Jesus School Kindergarten t-shirt
  • A new school track jacket and track pant
  • A change in our school socks for our boys to navy and white
  • Various school accessories (e.g. scarf, hair accessories, school bag etc)

The school is providing ALL children (Years 1-6) with a new Faction Sport Polo and a new reversible school hat (Pre-Primary–Year 6). Our Pre-Primary children will move to a compulsory school uniform (Sport Uniform only) with a newly designed polo that will be individual to this year level, as well as the new hat. They will not receive (or require) a Faction Sport Polo.

We are also designing a Kindergarten t-shirt that will be optional for this year level.

I appreciate that parents may have purchased uniforms for their children to last for a couple of years. While we will encourage families to move to the new uniform, it will not necessarily be practicable or affordable for all. Therefore, the expectation is that all children will be in the correct school uniform by 2022.

Miss Mitzi Phoebe has been appointed as the Acting Assistant Principal for Term Three this year. Mitzi will be replacing Mr Frank Colangelo who will be taking Long Service Leave next term. We look forward to Mitzi taking on the leadership role within the school and wish Frank all the best for his Long Service Leave.

P&F “Rock Star” Bingo Night
Our P&F Executive committee are gearing up once again to host their Bingo Night with this year’s theme being “Rock Star”. Most of the tables have been sold, but there are few tables left. I really encourage parents to attend this function as it is a fantastic night of fun, singing, reminiscing and laughter.

School Cross Country Championship
Just a reminder to all parents that the Infant Jesus School Cross Country Championship will be held on Friday, 28 June at Lightning Park in Noranda. Currently the children are preparing for the Carnival during Physical Education and our Running Club. Running Club is held every Wednesday and Friday morning.

Long distance running is an integral part of the Physical Education Curriculum and all children in Year 1 – Year 6 are encouraged to participate. The aim of the carnival is participation, so all children are encouraged to give it a go. Please see further information in the ‘Sport News’ section of the Veritas. This carnival will begin at 9.00am with our Year Six students running 2000m.

Pre-Kindergarten 2020 – Applications are Now Due
Enrolments are now being taken for siblings and new students wishing to commence Pre-Kindergarten at Infant Jesus School in 2020. Families with children eligible for Kindergarten in 2020 are required to fill out a Pre-Kindergarten Enrolment Application Form.

Infant Jesus School will continue to operate half day Pre-Kindergarten groups next year with the days of attendance being Tuesday and Thursday.

Pre-Kindergarten places are limited so it is important that parents within the Infant Jesus School community submit their applications as soon as possible. Forms can be obtained from the office.

From My Readings This Week…

Avoiding the Politics of Parenting

My daughter, who had a sleep adverse baby couldn’t believe her ears when a new mum in a mother’s group proudly announced that her four-month-old slept through the night. My daughter thought, “What am I doing wrong?”

Approaching this mother to discover her sleep secret, my daughter learned that this boast was made on the back of some dodgy data. The four-year-old had slept the night through once, but this mother thought it was worth boasting about.

I welcomed my daughter to the politics of parenting where benchmarking of kids’ physical and social development, their behaviour and academic progress can become a constant.

The Pitfall of Benchmarking with other children
Comparing your child with others is a stress-inducing and, ultimately, useless activity. It’s hard to resist, as we tend to assess our progress in any area of life by checking out how we compare with our peers.

When you were a child in school you probably compared yourself to your schoolmates. Your teachers may not have graded you, but you knew who the smart kids were and where you ranked in the pecking order.

Now that you have kids of your own do you still keep an eye on your peers? Do you use the progress and behaviour of their kids as benchmarks to help you assess your own performance as well as your child’s progress? Or perhaps you compare your child to yourself at the same age?

Benchmarking children’s progress with that of other children is not a wise parenting strategy. Inevitably, it will lead to parent frustration, as there will always be a child who performs better than your own on any scale you use.

Kids develop at their own rates
Each child has his or her own developmental clock, which is nearly impossible to alter. There are late bloomers, early developers, bright sparks and steady-as-you-go kids everywhere. It’s the first group that can cause the most concern for parents who habitually compare children to siblings, their friends’ kids and even themselves when they were in school.

The trick is to focus on your child’s improvement and effort and use your child’s results as the benchmark for his or her progress and development. “Your spelling is better today than it was a month ago” is a better measure of progress than “Your spelling is the best in the class!”

Gender matters
It’s no secret that different architects developed boys’ and girls’ brains. One major difference lies around timing, or maturity. The maturity gap between boys and girls is anywhere between 12 months and two years and seems to be consistent all the way to adulthood.

Quite simply, girls have a developmental head start over boys in areas such as handwriting, verbal skills and relationship skills. Boys benefit greatly from teaching strategies designed for their specific needs. They also benefit from having teachers and parents who recognise that patience is a virtue when teaching and raising boys, as it seems to take longer for many boys to learn and develop.

Kids have different talents, interests and strengths
So your eight-year-old can’t hit a tennis ball like Novak Djokavic, even though your neighbour’s child can. Perhaps your neighbour’s teenager is a piano virtuoso, while your fourteen-year old’s idea of musical talent is listening to Spotify while doing homework. Comparisons are stressful, as they can bear no relationship to children’s interests and talents.

It’s better to help your child or young person identify his or her own talents and interests. And also recognise that strengths and interests may be completely different than those of his or her peers and siblings.

Avoid linking your parenting self-esteem to your child’s performance
Take pride on your children’s performance at school, in sport or their leisure activities. Seeing your child doing well is one of the unsung pleasures of parenting. You should also celebrate their achievements and milestones such as taking their first steps, getting their first goal in a game or getting great marks at school.

However, you shouldn’t have too much personal stake in your children’s success or in their milestones, as this close association makes it hard to separate yourself from them. It may also lead to excessive parental pressure for kids to do well, which is an acknowledged source of anxiety for many children and young people.

The maxim “You are not your child” is a challenging but essential parental concept to live by. Doing so takes real maturity and altruism, but it is the absolute foundation of that powerful thing known as ‘unconditional love’.
By Michael Grose

Prayer for the Week
Glory be to the Father,
Who by His almighty power and love created me,
making me in the image and likeness of God.

Glory be to the Son,
Who by His precious Blood delivered me from hell,
and opened for me the gates of heaven.

Glory be to the Holy Spirit,
Who has sanctified me in the sacrament of Baptism,
and continues to sanctify me
by the graces I receive daily from His bounty.

Glory be to the Three adorable Persons of the Holy Trinity,
now and forever.

Thought for the Week

Children’s games are hardly games. Children are never more serious than when they play.
Michel de Montaigne

 Have a great week.


Paul Hille


© Infant Jesus School 2017
17 Smith St, Morley WA 6062
Tel: (08) 9276 1769 | Fax: (08) 9276 2998

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