Like ourselves, Jesus has choices. Entering (as best we can) Jesus’ mind at the commencement of his ministry (Mark 1:12-15), we witness his encounter with John the Baptist, who has emerged from contemplative time in the desert, courageously calling for repentance and proclaiming the coming of the Messiah. John baptises Jesus. Elsewhere Jesus says of John – greater has never been born of woman. What a mighty man he was! I’m reminded of that Russian politician Alexei Navalny - prepared to suffer the consequences for what is right rather than fly below the authority’s radar.
The Spirit descends on Jesus and the Father hails him as “beloved Son”. Wow! Jesus’ response is the model for us.
First a retreat – the Spirit inspires him to take contemplation time in the wilderness. We can imagine what inducements Satan might have tried to make Jesus abandon his mission.
“C’mon – God has just claimed you as his beloved Son – you are the man – numero uno! You can do anything; have anything you want! Imagine the magic you can do – you can really go places! Don’t waste your talents with these peasants – you’re for the big time.”
And we can imagine Jesus’ strength, supported by angels, in resisting Satan’s blandishments. Instead we visualise him prayerfully, reflectively discerning just what the Father wants of him. Confident of the Father’s will, he knows the cost. As the pieces fall into place, John is arrested and Jesus, focussed by his desert experience, begins his ministry in his home region of Galilee – among the ordinary people where most of his ministry will take place. Here is the model par excellence for us. Quiet, prayerful contemplation of what the Father wants for me? Is it the easy, self-centred way of fame, fortune, power, glamour and self-interest? Or is it the selfless, self-sacrificing way of John and Alexei? How do we, like Jesus, bring the Good News of the Kingdom among the ordinary people and circumstances of our lives? Lent is the best time for contemplation of what the Father wants of us.
Deacon Mark Kelly
ASH WEDNESDAY PRAYER SERVICE ON-LINE
Although the Victorian lockdown has prevented us from gathering today to mark the beginning of Lent, we can use some of our time to pray quietly at home.
Fr Chris Monaghan CP (Holy Cross Centre, Templestowe) has prepared a 10 minute prayer service with music, prayer, Gospel and reflection. You can access the video at:
Wishing you a blessed Lenten Season. Kind regards, Sophy Morley.
BOOKINGS FOR MASSES
Weekend of February 20th & 21st:
This will bring up the list of Masses.
Click on book now button and follow the prompts
Click on the Mass you wish to attend (please only choose one Mass)
Then click on the number of tickets required.
(Please note Children over 12 months need to have a ticket booked)
Then fill in your details.
Click on purchase ticket. TICKETS ARE FREE.
Make sure that you have completed the purchase of your ticket by checking your email confirmation. If you do not get an email confirming your ticket please contact the parish office.
(You don’t need to print or bring your ticket.)
You must book in to come to a Sunday Mass, please do not just turn up. Warragul & Drouin Masses are strictly limited to 80 people. Neerim South 50 people.
If you have any issues please call Prue at the Parish office p: 5623 1642.
DROUIN FICIFOLIA FESTIVAL WORSHIP SERVICE
Venue: St Ita's Catholic Church, Victoria St, Drouin.
Time: 7.00 pm.
Date: Sunday 21st February 2021.
ALL WELCOME. MASKS REQUIRED.
Today we received some very welcome news from the State Government that schools can return to onsite learning, tomorrow, Thursday 18th February.
St Ita’s will revert back to the same drop off and pick up procedures that we have been running from the start of the school year at the Drouin Rec Reserve and the School Admin entrance. We will also maintain the rigorous Covid-19 protocols to keep everyone in our community healthy and safe.
I would like to take this time to thank all our parents for their ongoing support and patience during these uncertain Covid-19 times. It is a tough gig when you have to change and adapt to support your child’s learning from home and you have all done an amazing job with this.
I also need to give thanks to our wonderful St Ita’s staff whose efforts with planning and student support were nothing short of outstanding over the 5-day shutdown.
When our learning community received word last Friday that we were going back into lock down, the St Ita’s staff displayed their amazing character and professionalism to revert into a remote learning mindset. In a limited time frame, they worked in their teams to put together a quality-learning program designed to meet the needs of all their children.
The shutdown also helped highlight the success of our Whole School Approach to Positive Behaviour (WSAPB) that we introduced across our school last year for all our students, staff and parents. We want all our learning community to be inclusive, respectful and compassionate people, whilst developing resilience within and working through tough times and challenges as a team.
As Principal of St Ita’s, I understand the pressures and anxiety that remote learning can bring to the family unit. I also believe that open, honest and clear communication is a key component of working together to create a respectful child centred learning environment. If you need to talk to me about your challenges, your uncertainty or your fears, please do not hesitate to contact me by calling School Admin on 5623-7222.
Thanks for continuing to remain positive, respectful and supportive of each other as we work together through these challenging times. It is very much appreciated.
Today we had the opportunity to conduct a little Ash Wednesday Liturgy for our staff and students who were onsite for remote learning. Ash Wednesday is the first day of LENT, a time for the friends of Jesus to prepare for Easter. Easter is the time to celebrate how much God loves us and that God is the giver of life. It is the most important feast that Christians celebrate.
During the 40 days of Lent, we prepare for Easter by taking time to be quiet in our hearts, by praying, by doing good deeds, by being forgiving and asking for forgiveness. We will receive ashes on our foreheads today to remind us that we need to try to be more like Jesus.
The imposition of ashes is a solemn ritual that signals the beginning of the holy season of Lent.
The ashes come from a previous Palm Sunday. The palms are burned, the ashes collected and then crushed into a fine, sooty powder and placed into bowls.
The ashes are usually blessed by the priest during the Ash Wednesday Mass after the homily. Then, in a Communion-like procession, people are invited to come forward, and the ashes are applied to each person’s forehead in the shape of a cross as the minister or priest proclaims: “Remember that you are dust, and unto dust you shall return” (Genesis 3:19).
VICTORIA ST PARKING
Can I plese request all parents that are parking along Victoria St to drop off or pick up children from school, to please park along the school side of Victoria St only to avoid congestion & as a safety precaution for passing traffic. Please do not park on the residential side of Victoria St. Please observe the no-parking signs in front of the school admin building.
Teaching your child how to handle their fears will help them learn confidence and resilience.
by Charity Ferreira
Anxiety at drop-off, monsters under the bed, fear of sleeping alone. These top the list of fears kids commonly wrestle with in kindergarten. Kids’ fears can be frustrating, inconvenient, and baffling for parents. They’re also developmentally normal, says Dr. Veronica Raggi, a researcher and clinical psychologist who has treated children and adolescents with anxiety in private practice, school, and hospital settings including New York University and the University of Maryland, College Park. If your child balks at sleeping alone or sheds tears at kindergarten drop-off, Raggi says there are some things you can do to help your child cope with her fears in the short term and learn confidence and resilience in the process. Parenting win!
KEEP CALM AND CONFIDENT
It’s important for parents to manage their own anxiety about the transition to kindergarten, Raggi says. If your child has separation anxiety, you may feel nervous, sad, or distressed yourself. And you are likely communicating your own distress to your child. “Sometimes parents will inadvertently give off non-verbal cues whether that’s in their facial expression, their body language, maybe they hover,” says Raggi. “Even young kids are adept at picking up some of these little cues that the parent is experiencing their own anxiety and the message then becomes ‘my parent is anxious there must be something dangerous or not okay about this situation.’ The more the parent can convey calm and confidence in new or uncertain situations, the more likely the child is going to perceive that situation as safe.”
MAKE GOODBYES SHORT AND SWEET
If your child is clingy at drop-off, make your goodbye as drama-free as possible. A kiss, an “I love you,” and a “Have a good day, I’ll see you soon,” and then, it’s best to leave. You may be tempted to stay, thinking it will ease the transition, Raggi says, but that can reinforce the anxiety your child feels about being separated from you. Instead of connecting with the teacher or integrating into the classroom, they’re focused on the fact that they don’t want you to leave.
DON’T OVER-TALK IT
You may be trying to reassure your child that the new school, sitter, or after-school activity is going to be just fine. But don’t go overboard with the conversation. “Parents might talk too much about the situation, saying you’re going to be okay, there’s nothing to worry about, or maybe they talk through the plan in greater detail than the child is even requesting,” Raggi says. “This kind of alerts the child to, ‘Oh, something’s different about this situation. Mom looks a little worried. Mom’s prepping me. Maybe this is something I need to be cautious or concerned about.'” Your kindergartener’s attention span may not be long enough to sustain an extensive conversation anyway. So answer any questions he has, but keep it matter-of-fact.
KEEP ROUTINES FAMILIAR AND COMFORTING
Another thing that helps with the transition to kindergarten, Raggi says, is to keep the morning routine, well, routine. “They have their preferred breakfast. They’re expected to engage in the tasks they normally would in the morning, just a very calm kind of setting, and then on the walk to school or the drive to school, chatting about enjoyable topics, whether it’s something fun you’re going to do later in the day or a favourite TV show.” When parents model that they are comfortable in the situation, she says, kids often follow suit.
LET THEM COME UP WITH STRATEGIES
Learning how to handle his fearful feelings will offer big advantages to your child in the long run. It’s tempting to take over when your child expresses anxiety or worry, Raggi says, but rather than telling him that everything will be ok or that he doesn’t need to worry, ask your child, what might be something you could do about it if you feel afraid? Convey belief in your child’s ability to handle the situations that are coming up. By learning to self-soothe, she says, your child learns that he can handle his negative emotions. “If the parent is always stepping in to take ownership of the problem and provide more support than may be necessary and not allowing the child to have to kind of sit with and manage a little bit of distress, they’re really not learning the distress-tolerance skills they need to feel more independent and competent at handling their own problems as they come up.”
TAKE BABY STEPS
When a child has a significant fear that is affecting her functioning or the family’s (hello, bedtime), parents have to balance warmth and validation with limit setting and boundaries so that they aren’t enabling avoidance, Raggi says. A professional can be a big help with developing a gradual series of steps to help your child build confidence in facing their anxiety. For example, you may decide that you won’t let your child sleep in bed with you, because that will reinforce her fear and her dependence on you. But if she’s struggling, you want to help her build toward the final goal of being able to sleep alone.
“Some parents who’ve been physically present for their child to fall asleep for a number of years, work on a process where they start to sit in the chair next to their child, and then move the chair closer to the door. Or, start with intervals of time when the child is rewarded for lying in bed independently for just a few minutes while the parent brushes their own teeth. And then the parent checks in. And then we fade out the check-ins over time.”
DO A POST - GAME RECAP
A little bit of processing after successfully dealing with something that frightened them can help kids connect with their own power to handle their fears. Keep the discussion simple, Raggi says. Try a few questions like, “Remember earlier in the day, you were really afraid, or you told me, ‘I’m not going to have a good day.’ or ‘I can’t do it’. And you came back and it seems like you had an okay day. What do you think?” Or, “Do you think it went better than you thought it would?” This helps your child recognize that when she feels afraid, it doesn’t mean bad things are going to happen, and that she can handle it.
Some of the more negative views about using rewards talk about reward systems feeling like bribery, or squelching kids’ internal motivation. “But there really isn’t evidence to suggest that reward systems ruin a child or ruin motivation,” Raggi says. While they are contraindicated when a child’s internal motivation for something is already high, she says, when your child has to do something that is scary or hard for them, having a little external motivation can make a big difference and move things in a positive direction.
“Something simple, whether it’s stickers or points that lead to a privilege or a prize can really go a long way in helping them to consider doing those things that they might otherwise resist. And, obviously, that leads to the mastery, and feeling good about themselves, and then you fade out the reward system over time.”
PARENT-TEACHER TELEPHONE INTERVIEWS
Parent-Teacher interviews will take place by telephone on Monday 22nd February and Wednesday 24th February from 3.50pm (with the exception of Grade 3V and Foundation F A/N whom will take place on Monday 22nd and Thursday 25th February instead of the Wednesday.)
- Please book your interview time on-line via the school interviews website: https://www.schoolinterviews.com.au/
- Please use the booking code: zbuhn
- Siblings will need to be booked at different times.
- The teacher will call you on your mobile - please make sure your up-to-date contact details are advised on Operoo.
MARIST-SION YEAR 7 - 2022 - INFORMATION EVENT
All current Grade 6 students and their parents are invited to attend the Year 7 Information evening for 2022 at Marist Sion College, Warragul as per details below on Wednesday 10th March.
- Enrolment information will be available at the event.
- Registration is required in the hall on arrival.
- Masks are mandatory. Social distancing will be observed.
SCHOOL FEES & FEE CONCESSION
The 2021 school fee statements were emailed to all families yesterday.
Fees are payable annually by the end of March or per term by the 4th week of each term. BPAY details are available on the school fee statement. School fees must be paid in full by the end of the school year they are due, December 2021.
If any families would like to pay off their fees either weekly, fortnightly or monthly, please set up a direct debit schedule by completing a Direct Debit Form and returning to the school office at your earliest convenience. Please calculate the total fees payable by the number of weeks/payments required for your fees to be paid by December 2021. For any assistance please contact the school Admin office via email on: firstname.lastname@example.org
For any families that have recently received a Government means-tested health care concession card & have not already advised the school office, please forward a copy of your card to the office to check your eligibility, as a fee concession may apply. The card must be in the name of the parent/fee payer for a fee concession to apply with the student details listed on the card. A CSEF (Camp, Sport & Excursion Fund) form must also be completed.
If your current Health Care concession card has expired, or is due to expire and your card is re-issued, please send a copy of your new card details to the office as soon as possible for the concession to be checked and applied to your fees.
The Conveyance Allowance application is now open for term 1 for any families that qualify for the travel allowance as per the criteria below.
You may apply to claim this Government Allowance if:
- You live more than 4.8 kilometres by the shortest practical route from our school and we are the closest Catholic school to your place of residence.
- You live more than 4.8 kilometres from our school and you cannot access a bus.
- You access a bus and live more than 4.8 kilometres from the bus stop.
You must lodge a new application each year.
Eligibility is assessed when the School completes your child’s application on the Government Student Conveyance Allowance System (SCAS). If approved, the allowance payable is based on the one way distance to make the journey to and from school. No private car allowance is payable if the journey to and from school could be made using a public transport service or contract school bus.
COVID DROP OFF AND PICK UP FOR ALL ST ITA’S STUDENTS AND FAMILIES
Could all St Ita's families please follow the procedures set out below.
• There is no parking in the Drouin Rec Reserve or in the St Ita’s School Admin car-park areas
• Please follow the car line loops for drop off and pick up of children. Teachers will be there to assist children to enter and exit cars. Please do not exit your vehicles in car line.
• Family surnames A-G can be dropped off between 8.30am and 8.50am and picked up at the front of School Admin car-line from 3.20pm -3.45pm.
• Family surnames H-Z can be dropped off between 8.30am and 8.50am and picked up at the Drouin Rec Reserve car loop from 3.20pm -3.45pm.
• If you are a Foundation parent and you wish to walk your child to the main gate at Admin, you will need to park your car along the school side of Victoria St or reverse park in the church car park and walk up to the main admin gate. (Please do not park your car at Drouin Rec Reserve or in the Admin car park and if you park along Victoria St/Church, you must exit your car with your children to walk to the school entry.) Please note the no-parking signs in front of the school along Victoria St.
• Any parents wishing to enter the school to meet with your child’s class teacher or Principal must ring admin first on 5623-7222 and make an appointment, making sure that they sign in on-arrival.
• Any parents entering the school are required to wear a mask when on site.
We thank you for your continued support during these challenging times.
SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION 2021
Unfortunately, due to the new circuit breaker actions introduced to stop the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) across Victoria from late last Thursday night, all weekend Masses last week were cancelled. Due to the unpredictability of this happening again Fr Peter is inviting our Reconciliation families to come along to make your family's commitment at the end of any one of the following Masses below over the next two weekends.
Please book online to attend one of these Masses, you will find the link in our ‘Parish Bulletin’ section of this newsletter.
Please note: The link is for this weekend’s Masses either Saturday 20th or Sunday 21st February. If you are wanting to book for the weekend of February 27th/ 28th you will need to use the link in next week’s bulletin.
For the families that are not able to attend one of these Masses you will be able to make your Commitment at one of our Reconciliation workshops.
St Ignatius Church. Main Neerim Sth Rd, Neerim South - Saturday: Vigil 5.30pm
St Joseph’s Church. Witton Street, Warragul - Saturday Vigil: 7.00pm
St Joseph’s Church. Witton Street, Warragul - Sunday: 9.00am
St Ita’s Church. Victoria Street, Drouin - Sunday: 10.30am
The next Reconciliation meeting will be a parent/child workshop on Wednesday 3rd March at 7pm at St Ita's School or on Thursday 4th March at 4pm or 7pm at St Joseph's Church Warragul.
SENIOR HOUSE SWIMMING CARNIVAL
Last Thursday we were blessed with a beautiful morning for our annual Grade 3-6 House Swimming Carnival at the Warragul Outdoor Pool. The students showed great house spirit and sportsmanship throughout the day!
Considering the interruptions to swimming last year it was pleasing to see so many students put their hand up and attempt the 50m and 25m events.
Thank you to all the staff that assisted with the day and a special thanks to Marist-Sion College for supplying and setting up the shade tents.
and the winners were..............
- Congratulations to Red House who were our winners on the day with 250 points,
- Blue House - runners up with 228 points,
- Green House - received 154 points and
- Gold House - finished with 116 points.
Congratulations to our age champions:
9/10 Boys - Zephyr Ledger
9/10 Girls - Indie Joiner
11 Boys - Nate Joiner
11 Girls - Olivia Jinks
12/13 Boys - Jett Proctor
12/13 Girls - Emmersyn Kneebone
Well done to everyone that participated,
Mr Joe Black.
GRADE 6 BOMBER JACKETS
Our Grade 6 students will be excited to try on sample Bomber jackets this week for sizing, ready to order by Friday 5th March if they would like to purchase a jacket. Order forms will be sent home tomorrow. Payment is preferred by flexischools where possible.
Any students with shoulder length hair or longer must tie their hair neatly back using school colours: red, blue, white or black.
We have had several cases of head lice confirmed at school. If lice are found, students are permitted to attend school once the hair has been treated. We recommend a further treatment after 7 days to ensure any juvenile lice have all been detected.
LUNCH ORDERS - order early for a Friday
Lunch & snack orders are available from our school canteen every Monday, Wednesday and Friday during the school term. Orders are placed via Flexischools.
Due to the overwhelming demand statewide for Flexischools on-line system for school lunch orders every Friday, we are requesting St Ita's parents to please order your Friday lunch orders on-line early and order the day before on a Thursday evening or earlier, whenever possible to avoid any delays and technical issues.
If you do need to order on a Friday morning, please try and order before 7am and please check you receive a confirmation email of your order.
Flexischools does give you the opportunity to order for future dates or as a re-ocurring order if your child has a lunch order every Friday, you may want to choose this option.
BOOK CLUB issue 1: orders close today.
Book club catalogues orders are placed on-line via the Scholastic bookclub website - LOOP. We do not accept cash/manual orders. For every order placed the school receives reward points to purchase new books for our library. Click here to visit Book Club on-line
Orders for issue 1 are due today, Wednesday 17th February for this issue to be delivered free to school.