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 3 Term 2 2021 Newsletter

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Week 3 Term 2 2021 Newsletter

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

Education and schools are constantly in a state of change, much within our control, some brought about through need and others through a desire to improve what we are already doing well. This week there is important information for all parents as we prepare to make a number of changes in different areas of our school.

Compass Parent Portal

Catholic Education is rolling out a new school management platform called Compass. The Compass Parent Portal is an online portal that will allow you to interact with the school and access up-to-date information. This platform will allow access to the following features:

  • Submitting absence notes
  • Accessing and returning permission notes
  • Viewing your child’s academic report
  • Communicating with your child’s teacher
  • Further capacity to be introduced over time

Next Monday 10 May, we will send you your log-in credentials along with instructions on how to log into the Parent Portal either through the Compass app (Android & IOS) or desktop. This will be the only requirement at this stage. There will be regular reminders and promotion of the introduction of the new platform.

From Monday 24 May, the student absentee capacity on SZapp will be disabled and all absences will need to be submitted via the Compass Parent Portal. This is to ensure parents are accessing and becoming familiar with the new platform in a carefully managed way. Submitting the absentee on Compass directly aligns with the class roll and removes a number of administrative steps here at school.

On Wednesday 16 June, Semester 1 Student Reports will be made available to parents, via the Compass Parent Portal. This will be the only way that school reports will be shared, they will not be sent home as a hard copy.

Over the remainder of the year, we will continue to support the introduction of further capacity within the Compass platform. Please contact the school if you have any questions or challenges as we transition to this new school management platform.

Changes to Early Learning Centres from 2022

Catholic Education operates eight regional Early Learning Centres across Canberra, one of which we are fortunate to have located here at St Joseph’s. A review of the Early Learning Centres was undertaken in collaboration with the University of Wollongong, our communities, families, and other stakeholders. Based on the findings of this review, Catholic Education is making some enhancements to the Catholic Early Learning offer from 2022.

From 2022 ELCs will offer two sessions:

  • Preschool (9.00am to 3.00pm) and
  • Preschool Plus (8.00am to 5.30pm) program

Families will have the option to choose a five day a week or five day a fortnight of Preschool, or Preschool Plus sessions, as well as the option to enrol for school terms only (40 weeks) or school terms and holidays (48 weeks).

As part of these changes in 2022, there will no longer be Before and After School Care offered within the Early Learning Centre, that is available to younger students in Foundation and Year 1.

If you have any questions about enrolling in the Early Learning Centre for 2022, or these changes, please contact the Director Molly Henson or myself.

Reporting - Semester 1 2021

In the coming weeks, all classroom teachers will begin the process of creating each child’s Semester 1 2021 report. In line with changes being implemented by Catholic Education, the structure of the reports for Semester 1 will be as follows.

For Foundation students:

  • Achievement in each subject will be reported using a four-point scale (Well Above Expectations, Above Expectations, Meeting Expectations and Working Towards Expectations).

For Year 1 to Year 6 students:

  • Academic grades for each subject using a five-point scale from A-E will be reported using the Australian Curriculum Achievement Standards.

For all students:

  • Strand Achievement will be reported in English, Mathematics, Humanities and Social Sciences, Health and Physical Education, and The Arts using a five-point scale (Excellent, High, Sound, Basic, Elementary).
  • Engagement with Learning statements, which are taken directly from the Australian Curriculum, will provide specific information about your child’s Critical and Creative Thinking, and Personal and Social Responsibility, using a three-point scale (Beginning, Developing, Consistently).
  • Individual student comments will not be used in the Semester 1 Reports.

Clear communication is an important feature of effective reporting. The Semester Report in this format encourages parent engagement and conversation about student learning. We want the report to be the entry point for purposeful and informative parent / teacher interviews where we can engage in genuine conversation about each child’s strengths, challenges, effort and areas for growth.

Following the Semester 1 Reports being made available on Wednesday 16 June on the new Compass Parent Portal, it is expected that all parents will make a time to meet with the teacher to discuss the report and to set goals for the second half of the year.

This new approach to Academic Reporting is a developing process. Further work will be undertaken in the coming months to determine how progress and achievement is best reported based on what we know to be important information about a student’s learning and progress.

Enrolment Time

It is now enrolment time, so please promote our wonderful school to family and friends and encourage them to come for a visit.


Enrolment Open Days – Monday 10 May 9.30 – 11.00am and Wednesday 12 May 4.30 – 6.00pm. 

Mother’s Day Breakfast and Prayer Assembly

I wish all our mums, grandmothers, aunties and special women in our lives, a wonderful Mother’s Day on Sunday. We are looking forward to seeing many of you on Friday morning at our Mother's Day Breakfast from 7.45am. 

St Joseph’s P&F Community BBQ

On Sunday 16 May from 3pm, the St Joseph’s Parents and Friends (P&F) are hosting a community BBQ and picnic here at school. All families are invited to come along for a sausage sizzle or bring along their own picnic to enjoy on the oval. It will just be an opportunity to come together and enjoy what we hope will be more beautiful autumn weather. Please save the date as more information is to come.


Yours in Christ, 

Cameron Tarrant



Welcome back to Term Two,

We hope that you and your family were able to find some time to share a book or two during the Easter break and enjoy the beautiful sunshine.

Thank you to all those families who worked hard to find any overdue books and have returned them. This means that the popular titles that many students wait patiently to be returned, can now be reborrowed and enjoyed by other students.

We are very busy in the Library processing and covering hundreds of new books to add to our collection. We are dedicated to allowing students access to wonderful literature through our Library and we try to keep up to date with new titles. Students are always welcome to ask for new titles that they would like to see added to our Library.

We welcome any donations of good quality books or collections that you are no longer needing at home. When donating, please send them either to the Front Office or have your child bring them to their library lesson.

Just a reminder that orders for the Scholastic Book Club close next Thursday 13 May.

Lastly, our school will be involved in the Chief Minister's Reading Challenge. Each student has been enrolled and will need to read 30 titles to complete the challenge. Students in Foundation to Year 2 will read their books during Library times. Year 3-6 will complete an individual reading log that can include readers, class novels or their own personal reading. Once each student has completed the log we then are able to be gifted vouchers to purchase new books for our Library.

Georgina and Catherine

Sports News

Calling St Joseph’s skiers and snowboarders

Does your child ski or snowboard? We are seeking interest for participation in the 2021 Interschools Snowsports Championships. If your child/children ski or snowboard then this is a great way to have fun and improve their skills while representing our fantastic school on the snow.

What is it?

The Interschools Snowsports Championships is a series of snowsports competitions where students compete for their school as part of a team or individually.

When is it?

The Southern NSW & ACT Interschools Snowsport Championships are to be held at Perisher from Tuesday 20 July to Friday 23 July.

Who can participate?

School students from Kindergarten to Year 12 can compete. Children compete against their own age groups.

Skill level?

School students from all ability levels are encouraged to enter, with an emphasis on fun and participation. It is advised that all competitors are able to execute link turns and ride a chairlift/T-bar confidently prior to competing.

Costs / Accommodation

There are some fees for registering and racing and parents/guardians are responsible for arranging accommodation, meals & tickets for the duration of the Championship (20-23/7/21) which will be held at Perisher. Perisher has guaranteed tickets will be available for purchase by participants for the event dates.

Register Interest

Email Christina Grant ( to ask questions or register your interest. To register a team St Joseph’s will need 3 or more students for at least 1 event type (Alpine, ski or snowboard cross/moguls or cross-country). We will need to decide if we are going to participate by the end of April as school entries open in May 2021.

More Information?

If enough students are interested we will organise an information night / Zoom meeting to share further details. You can also find more information on the Interschools website:

Koby Allan

Sports Coordinator

Defence School Mentor News
Defence Kids Club is back in full swing this week. Children meet every Thursday first break in the library. It is a great chance for students to connect with other children who are also from military families. All Defence kids are welcome to bring along a friend or two to join in the fun.

Sally Adams

Defence School Mentor

Does your child need a new

water bottle? 

The new St Joseph's water bottles have arrived, and for the first couple of weeks come with a little extra inside. The water bottles are available through the Uniform Shop on Qkr! for $12.00 and for a limited time, might have a voucher to the canteen, House Points, extra play time... or even being Principal for the day! 


Congratulations to this week's award recipients. 

Students receive their award at Friday morning assembly at 8.50am. Parents are again welcome to attend this assembly, but photos will continue to be taken each week and shared via SZapp. 

Foundation Red

Max B

Yvonne G

Foundation White

Manuela S

Mira K

1 Purple

Gwen V F

Isla C

1 Teal

Claire A

Ivy E

2 Magenta

Karma L

Liam B

2 Yellow

Aria K

Vairaj B

3 Black

Luke D

Aidan M

Shamita B

3 Navy

Ted V F

Sebastian R

4 Gold

Hamish McR

Nova S

4 Green

Callum A

Olivia O

5 Blue

Zoe B

Maggie M

5 Orange

Marnie C

Benjamin L

6 Lime

Olivia F

Frankie Q

6 Silver

Elise M

Joshua O'K

Sport Tihana B

Happy birthday to these students celebrating their birthdays this week:


Liam B
James M
Taj T
Frieda C