Reflecting on Mid August 2019 | go to Calendar »

Newsletter - Mid August 2019

1. From The Principal

Dear Families,

Welcome to the mid-August edition of the St John’s Reflection. I hope you were all able to take advantage of a little bit of the early Spring weather over the past weekend.

Regional Soccer Finals

A very big congratulations to our mixed soccer team who played in the Regional Finals last Monday in Fawkner. The team won their first game but lost the second game by one point meaning they were unable to play in the Grand Final. They did, however, play extremely well on an individual and on a team basis and should be incredibly proud of their efforts. I am sure that the entire school community will join me in saying congratulations and well done in representing the school and yourselves in the best of sporting traditions – a fantastic effort! Thanks to Miss Stephanie and all the parent volunteers who made the trek in support of the children too.

Update on Jayda’s Karate Championships

Jayda returned from Thailand this week after competing in the Asia Oceania Championships. She followed up her great performance at the National Championships with a 5th in the Kumite exercises and a 6th in the Kata exercises at this international level. Congratulations on a wonderful level of performance at this elite level, Jayda.

Parents and Friends Comedy Night

Last Saturday the Parents and Friends held this year’s major fundraiser and social night with a Comedy Show and silent and online auctions. While the number of those attending was smaller than had been hoped for, those who were there enjoyed some laughs provided by four up and coming comics, some lovely food and beverages, and the competition provided by attempting to “win” the bidding on the auction items on offer. A very big thank you goes out to the P&F Executive and the organising sub-committee for all the work that went into presenting this night and getting it off the ground. Thanks too to those local businesses that have supported the school in the donation of goods and services for the auction items, their support is extremely valuable and most appreciated (see the list of these businesses in the Parents and Friends section of this reflection).

First Communion

The sacrament of First Communion is coming up on Sunday 8th September for some of the children in Grades 3 and 4 and they are currently busy preparing for this. As Greta will be away with her family on the day, Fr Martin kindly agreed to have Greta undertake this sacrament at the recent whole school Mass for the Feast of the Assumption of Mary. Congratulations on this important step in your faith journey Greta, we hope the day was very special for you and for your family.

Children’s Book Week

This week we have marked the importance of reading, and the wonderful literature available to our children, as we celebrated the Children’s Book Council of Australia Book Week. Yesterday the children and staff all dressed up as various characters from favourite and popular books and there seemed to be no end of inventiveness (I suspect that many parents and children put a lot of thought into some of the costumes that were on display). The junior students were also able to view an entertaining puppet show yesterday while today we were privileged to have Sunshine, an author/illustrator, work with the children and discuss the the process of designing illustrations and pictures for stories. I have also shared a book titled Sally and the Magical Sneeze with some of the classes. Sally and the Magical Sneeze was written by an ex-student of St John’s, Simon Taylor, who dedicated the book to “imagination” and urged the readers to “let it puff out of you like a magical sneeze.” Sally and the Magical Sneeze is published by Larrikin House and available for purchase for $20 per copy in hardback edition.

Sally and the Magical Sneeze

Staff Leave

Mr Anthony Falcone, our Physical Education teacher, is currently on a period of Long Service Leave and enjoying a long awaited overseas holiday with his wife Laura. Anthony will return to duties at the beginning of next term. We have made arrangements to have the PE classes covered for the rest of term, including in the last week of term to make up for this week’s missed lesson. On two of the weeks we will have a guest facilitator from Athletics Australia leading workshops across the school with the children, something to look forward to.

Sally Barker, one of our hard working Learning Support Officers, will be taking a period of leave to travel overseas with her husband Marcello. Sally will be away from us for a period of four weeks in total and return to duties in Week 3 next term. We have arranged to have her duties covered by some familiar faces to our school in the time she is away and I will welcome her temporary replacements in the next reflection.

I will also be absent from the school for the final two weeks of this term as I am travelling on pilgrimage to Israel, with 17 of my local colleague principals from Catholic schools in the North Central Zone, to visit various sites in the Holy Land and to “walk in the footsteps of Jesus”. During the short time I am away Melanie Granata will be Acting Principal and I am sure that I leave the school in good hands until my return.

Looking forward to next term, Mrs Carlie Dowley will be returning to St John’s at the conclusion of her parental leave. Carlie will be with us in the final two weeks of this term to reacquaint herself with school life; she will be taking Performing Arts while I am away and working in Grade 2/3 on the Fridays that Melanie is Acting Principal.

They’re Calling You – Zoos Victoria Campaign

Our Environment Captain, Grace, is keen to promote a campaign that our school can be part of to aid Zoos Victoria and the conservation of  Eastern Lowland and Mountain Gorillas in Central Africa. Grace writes that “This term our school is involved with Zoos Vic in their Fighting Extinction campaign, ‘They’re Calling On You’. What is terrific about this is it streams into what we’re learning in Inquiry and RE about ‘Sharing The Planet’, and why all living creatures have a right to live happily on this planet…. Our school will be running a mobile phone drive, where you can drop off old and broken phones and accessories to be given to Zoos Vic. The phones are reused or recycled and the funds raised go to the Gorilla Doctors who give medical care to the Gorillas in their home, and to Zoos Vic to help them with their conservation programs.”

Thanks, Grace, for promoting this worthwhile campaign. Grace’s article can be read in full later in this reflection or by clicking this link.

Deepest Sympathy

As a community, we extend our deepest sympathy to the Tyrrell family on the passing of Norman Tyrrell aged 83, father to Michael and grandfather to Ned (Grade 6). Norman passed away peacefully on the morning of Saturday the 9th of August. Eternal rest grant unto him O Lord, and may perpetual light shine upon him.

Until next time, respectfully, Daniel 🙂

2. From The Parish


Download the latest newsletters from the Parish

Parish Newsletter August 17-18

3. From The P&F

It’s a wrap! Comedy Night done and dusted!

Our major fundraiser is over for another year and what a fabulous night!

Thank you so much to each and every person who helped make this night such a fun-filled and entertaining night. It may have been cold outside but in our little corner of Clifton Hill, there was only warmth, conviviality, laughter and great company!

We may be a small community but I feel like we punch above our weight when it comes to getting these events off the ground! One of the great things about this event is not just the opportunity to raise some money for our kid’s school, but to socialise with our friends within the school community in an environment that is relaxed and free from the distraction of our (no doubt adorable but very time consuming) children!!

It’s a chance to catch up with other parents, teachers, friends from the parish and our wider circle and strengthen those bonds that actually make us the community that we are all so proud of and which sets us apart from many larger schools.

We were so happy to welcome our parish priest Fr Martin, and the parish secretary Joan as well as alumni families, and our wonderful St John’s staff were there in fine form as well. Communities only stay strong if they are nourished, so for those unable to make it, we would love to see you next year!

However of course we do aim to raise some money and thanks to the generosity of not just our school community but the wider parish community, we were able to raise over $5000, which will go towards our Science, Technology and Music equipment.

To all those people who donated items for our hampers or donated larger items and vouchers or procured these from our local community, THANK YOU! To those who bought a ticket and came along, bought auction items, participated in the online auctions, enjoyed the food, partook in the wine and cocktails, helped to set up, wrap hampers, serve and clean up at the end of the night, THANK YOU!

And to our sponsors below, again THANK YOU!

  • Bop ’til you Drop
  • Piedemonte’s Supermarket
  • Uncle Drew’s Cafe
  • Cross Docks
  • Utilitaire (Karen Evans)
  • Including You (Belinda & Dominic)
  • Luna Park
  • Bon Tempo
  • Supermaxi
  • North Fitzroy Arms Hotel
  • Skaterz Roller Blade & Skate Rink
  • Quilty Family
  • Hutchinson Family
  • Montalto/Ficarra Family
  • Manickam Family
  • Emma Vecchi
  • McIntosh Family


Finally it would be remiss of me not to thank a few people that have poured many hours of hard work into this event both before and on the night. To the P&F Committee and class rep’s, thank you!  To Bec and Nelson, who were largely responsible for our amazing Mexican Fiesta behind the bar, Muchos Grazias!!

To Bernie and Vince, for stepping in and doing whatever needed to be done, before you could tell them it needed doing! Thank you!!  And to our incredibly competent and always cheerful Major Events Coordinator Melissa McIntosh, thank you so much for another successful and seamless event!

A couple of reminders:

Fathers Day Stall and Raffle.

  • We will be having our annual Father’s Day Stall next Friday August 30th. A flyer with more info will go out this week
  • The raffle tickets will also be going home later in the

Baker’s Delight Friday Lunch Orders:

Please note that Baker’s Delight Friday Lunch Orders are up and running. Get your order in Thursday evening for a Friday delivery. You can also order ahead for your convenience

Ordering is done online just go to: to order directly.

4. ZOOS VIC Fighting Extinction

This term our school is involved with Zoos Vic in their Fighting Extinction campaign, ‘They’re Calling On You’. What is terrific about this is it streams into what we’re learning in Inquiry and RE about ‘Sharing The Planet’, and why all living creatures have a right to live happily on this planet.

You may already know that ‘They’re Calling On You’ is a campaign supporting the conservation of the Eastern Lowland and Mountain Gorillas in Central Africa. Their habitat is being destroyed by deforestation caused by illegal mining for Coltan which is used in making many of our everyday electronic devices. These Gorillas are classed as Critically Endangered for this and other threats such as disease and poaching.

Our school will be running a mobile phone drive, where you can drop off old and broken phones and accessories to be given to Zoos Vic. The phones are reused or recycled and the funds raised go to the Gorilla Doctors who give medical care to the Gorillas in their home, and to Zoos Vic to help them with their conservation programs. This also means less Coltan is dug up and so less habitat is lost, and also less phones end up in landfill.

Another good thing about ‘They’re Calling On You’ is it creates awareness about the situation and what we can do to help. How can we help? Bring in your unused phones and accessories. Let your family, friends, neighbours, community and workplace know that they can help too. Remember to turn off your phone and delete all your personal data.

I or one of the other Planet Kids will have a talk with each class about this campaign. When we went on our excursion this term to Werribee Zoo we learnt about Fighting Extinction and habitat loss. We encountered the Western Lowland Gorillas who came out to eat and play. They are also Critically Endangered because of habitat loss, poaching and disease.

If you want to learn more just go to this link and head to Zoos Vic.

It’s all worth it for our Gorilla friends!
Grace C. (Environment Captain)

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