St Joseph’s Primary School - O'Connor
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Boronia Drive
O'Connor ACT 2602

Phone: 02 6248 9818
Fax: 02 6247 1792

Week 5 Term 3 2020 Newsletter

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Week 5 Term 3 2020 Newsletter

Dear Parents, Carers and the St Joseph’s Community,

COVID-19 Update

ACT continues to experience no new cases of COVID-19, but we need to remain acutely aware of the challenges being faced by other states and areas. This means that we must continue to follow the advice of health officials and maintain current protocols to ensure the health and safety of all in our community. At present, the measures being taken here at St Joseph’s include:

  • Any student, parent or staff member who has visited a COVID-19 hotspot must self-isolate for 14 days from the time of leaving the hotspot. Similarly, anyone having been in close contact with someone confirmed as having COVID-19. By definition, the following applies:
    • A close contact is someone who has been near enough to a person with COVID-19 while they were infectious that there is a reasonable chance they will have become infected with COVID-19.  A close contact is only someone who has been officially contacted by NSW or ACT Health directly.
    • A casual contact is defined as someone who has had face-to-face contact for less than 15 minutes cumulative over the course of a week, or been in the same close space for less than 2 hours, with a person with COVID-19 infection while they are infectious.
    • You need to isolate yourself in your home or another suitable place of residence if you have been identified as a close contact of a person with confirmed COVID-19 infection. Home isolation is enforceable under the Public Health Order.
  • All parents and visitors are still to limit their attendance in and around the school. This includes afternoon pick up – if you can use drive through, please do.
  • All students, parents and staff who are unwell, or exhibiting flu-like symptoms are not to attend the school. If at school, they are to be collected or go home as necessary.
  • Current Safety and Hygiene Protocols

In line with all ACT schools, we are currently not able to move beyond Stage 2.2 on the Easing of Restrictions Roadmap for Schools.  This means that we are now looking ahead to end of year events and how we may be able to facilitate these to celebrate student and school-wide achievements and milestones.

Further information is available at on the Catholic Education Canberra Goulburn website.

ACT Election - Saturday 17 October

There are 7 weeks until the ACT Election and we are now seeing candidates from all parties at shopping centres (or even receiving phone calls from them). I encourage you to approach candidates at the shopping centres and mention or discuss the value of ACT Catholic Schools and quiz them on their party’s support for ACT Catholic Schools. 

In the ACT, there are 29 systemic Catholic Schools who educate 15 000 students. In Canberra, Catholic schools are very similar to public schools, with our schools having almost exactly the same average ICSEA score (1077-1076). Our schools are inclusive, support families from all backgrounds, and operate on a modest budget.

Did you know that when you compare the total funding that Catholic schools in each state/territory receive, the ACT are the second lowest funded Catholic schools in the country? This is particularly impacted by the ACT Government’s low funding of Catholic schools.

Have a chat to the candidates and mention that you are a parent in an ACT Catholic School and funding of Catholic Schools is an important issue for you.

2020 Parent Satisfaction Survey

FINAL REMINDER - Each year parents are invited to respond to an online survey seeking feedback on the progress of our school. The responses received are included in forward planning for the following year and to identify successes and areas for growth. The survey closes today, Wednesday 19 August.

ELC Vacation Care

Each holiday break our ELC offers Vacation Care for ELC students, as well as for our Foundation and Year 1 students. Information and enrolment forms can be collected from the ELC Office.

Family Maths Week

Congratulations to Cindy and Ben L, Madeleine and Eoin S and Aidan M for the fabulous board games they created as part of Maths Week activities. 


Yours in Christ,

Cameron Tarrant


At times in our community, we have the need to welcome new families, celebrate new arrivals and to keep others in our thoughts and prayers. We have had a number of new babies born in 2020 and also loved ones who have needed our prayers, and we keep them all in our thoughts at this time. However, each week from now, we have added this section to our newsletter to share with the community. 

  • Congratuations to the Sajler family (Anthony Yr 4 Gold) on the safe arrival of Rafael Sajler. 
  • Congratuations also to Melanie Stratford (Yr 6 Silver teacher) who is expecting a new arrival in February 2021. 

  • Our sympathies and thoughts are with Nate R (Yr 4 Gold) and his family on the passsing of his grandfather.
  • Our sympathies and thoughts are with Linley Ellis (Yr 6 Lime teacher) and her family on the passing of her grandmother.


Please feel free to let the school know anything that you would like mentioned in the newsletter. 

Religious Life of St Joseph's


Year 3 Retreat and Reconciliation

Last Friday, all students in Year 3 and the children who had been preparing for the Sacrament of Reconciliation participated in a Retreat Day in the Parish Centre. We spent a wonderful day together where we explored the Parable of the Prodigal Son and the Parable of the Lost Sheep through scripture drama. The students who had prepared for the Sacrament of Reconciliation were joined by their families in the church as they participated in this special Sacrament.

Callum Aidan Hayden
Christopher Hamish Eoin
Blake Maeve Lachlan
Marnie Kayla Isaac
Sam Olivia Esmee
Lawrence James Janek
Sophie Louis Ashley
Georgina Scarlett Lily
Tom Georgina

First Holy Communion

Children who are enrolled in the Sacrament of First Holy communion were given home formation materials last week. Families can choose when to do the sessions and are welcome to join with other families to share the experience. The Retreat Day will be held in the Parish Centre before the Sacrament on Friday 11th September. The Sacrament date is Sunday 13 September with separate masses as required with numbers. Please keep these children in your prayers as they prepare for this important milestone in their faith journey with their families.

Violet Myah Jack
Adah Georgina Anthony
Hudson Troy Maggie
Bridget Benjamin Joseph
Jacob Anthony Dominic
Sam Hamish Erika
Marnie Nathan Reese
Josephine Daniel Lottie
Pritika Lucy Zoe
Benjamin Antonija Jacob
Diego James Max
Maria Alexander


Formation for The Sacrament of Confirmation will be a home based program. There would be formation for both children and parents. Families can choose when to do the sessions and are welcome to join with other families to share the experience. A Retreat Day will be held in the Parish Centre before the Sacrament on a date to be confirmed. The Sacrament date is Sunday 1 November with separate masses as required with numbers.

Our St Joseph Charism

This year as a staff we have been working together to further understand our Josephite Charism. This week we spent time breaking open the Saint May Mackillop Prayer which we have been learning as part of our year 6 led prayer each Friday.


Melanie Stratford

Religious Education Coordinator

Sustainability in Action

Sustainably Science Week

Creating Science Projects that focus on bringing sustainability to the ocean, Year 5 has created and designed some outstanding ideas!


Ocean/ CSS (Cheap, Sustainable, Safe)

Amy and Addison have developed an alternative shark net. “It’s made from recycled metal and plastic bottles. It prevents animals from getting stuck and also keeps rubbish from washing up on our beaches.”

The Anti-Bycatch Project

Kristian and Pavell have created their model through Minecraft. “We will put speakers in the water that put out a sound that sends sea-turtles and sharks away so that they do not get caught in fishing nets with other fish.”



Clean-O (short for Clean the Ocean 2020)

Made by Hamish and Ashley, This contraption is solar-powered and collects rubbish from docks and harbours. “It has a conveyor belt that collects the rubbish and drops it into a bucket.”



Marina Cleana 3000

Olvia and Roshni have also created a solar-powered rubbish collector. “It collects plastic through mesh bags that are so tightly woven, it can even collect microplastics. It has a filter to collect oil as well, and will know when it’s time to return to its dock with it’s sensor.”




“I am among those who think Science has great beauty.”- Marie Curie

Ryan McGee

Sustainability Coordinator 

Defence School Mentor News

Year 1 Defence students attended a Tyler Turtle workshop today that covered tips and hints for handling emotions and some great relaxation techniques. The session is specifically designed for young Defence children to help them navigate the military lifestyle. Foundation will be also participating over the coming weeks. During first break, Defence Kids Club enjoyed a relaxing craft session and the seniors enjoyed a brisk winter’s lunchtime walk.


Sally Adams

Defence School Mentor 


Thank You!

A big thank you to our wonderful families who have dropped off uniforms to go into the second-hand clothing pool. We have a large range of items available at a very cheap price! More donations are always welcome. 

Congratulations to this week's award recipients. 

Students are now receiving their Awards at Morning Gathering on Friday, but we are still unable to welcome parents to join us. 

Foundation Red

Enoch A

Azrielle T

Foundation White

Anne P

Dakota W

1 Purple

Lucy M

Teilo K

1 Teal

Jacob S

Chloe F-S

2 Magenta

Aidan M

Bonnie P

2 Yellow

Taj T

Dylan McG

Keone S

3 Black

Kayla N

Nova S

3 Navy

Scarlett P

Lachlan S

4 Gold

Nathan N

Anthony S

Violet W

4 Green

Reese McG

Yuetsho W

5 Blue

Hamish D

Josephine S

5 Orange

Jeremy S

Amalija S

6 Lime

Milana R

Harry S

6 Silver

Wylie A

Rose W


Olivia F

Roshni N

Happy birthday to these students celebrating their birthdays this week:Birthday_Cake.png

Claire A
Sophia M
Kennedy W


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