Principal’s Comments

For various reasons I have been caused to think in the last couple of weeks about citizenship.

Our ANZAC Services held with Secondary students in Week 1 of Term reminded me of the tremendous benefits that we enjoy as citizens of our country that were won and defended through the actions of our armed forces. We live under the liberties and freedoms, we enjoy the rights and privileges that we do, because we are citizens of Australia. I was reminded of the fact that my life and freedoms are protected and defended on my my behalf.

Celebrating recently with friends their being granted Australian citizenship reminded me of how valuable it is and how strongly it is sought and how highly it is valued. It is a thing not to be taken lightly and it is worth committing to and living in accordance with the laws and standards of the land.

The news of recent weeks of there being further Citizenship issues amongst our Federal politicians reminded me of responsibilities and requirements held of citizens. Unreserved, uncompromised loyalty to the people and prosperity of the nation is essential for citizenship. Any suggestion that a person may have divided loyalties or competing interests between our community’s interests, welfare and benefit and those of another is reason to make them ineligible to be in elected office potentially influencing decisions of the parliament.

Each of these scenarios are of varied significance and represent very different aspects of “citizenship” across a broad spectrum of cultural and political importance. But the lessons they provide can be applied elsewhere.

While far from a “sovereign state” , membership of our school community carries very similar implications.

As members of this ACC MP community we have a history - a story that tells of our background, of the people and events that formed us, that we value, that we understand provide the basis on which our current experience of community stands. As member of the ACC community we recognise that we gain from the dedicated work of those that have gone before who have given so much so that we can enjoy all the benefits of being a member of this community today. We also understand that we in turn are building a brighter future for those yet to come, who will enjoy the benefit of our effort and commitment.

As members of this ACC community we have reason to celebrate - the experience of becoming a member of this community with all that that means: enjoying all its benefits and blessings, belonging to the “people” of this place.

As members of this ACC community we have obligations and loyalties to each other and to our shared culture; seeking the collective best interest rather than ours alone; accepting and abiding by the requirements made upon us as members.

As useful as this comparison may be, and I think it is, in reminding us how we can live together in community as a country or as a  school, it falls far short from the real lesson that we are to learn.

In Philippians 3:20 Paul reminds us that as Christians the most important thing for us to know is we are “citizens of heaven!”

The reality of this truth provokes us to consider the same implications.

As “citizens of heaven” we look back to the work that was done on our behalf to win for us freedom and liberty, not in political or social terms, but in a spiritual. We are free to worship, free from condemnation, free from the domination of our natures and mistakes, protected and defended from our enemy.

As “citizens of heaven” we value the opportunity that we have been provided and hold it dear. It is not presumed upon not taken for granted, rather treasured, celebrated, and rejoiced over.

As “citizens of heaven” we understand that our single loyalty and allegiance must be to that King - that we must acceptance His leadership and authority in all things and seek through our action and decision the  strengthening of His kingdom.

May God help us each day to live as citizens of heaven.

Whole School Information

Happy Mothers’ Day

Mum’s are very special people and we celebrate with every family who is recognising or remembering the love of a mother.

May all the Mums in our school community feel respected, appreciated, and deeply loved by those they care for!

Our school marked the occasion with a wonderful Mother’s Day morning tea. Over 100 members of the community joined in remembering all the love and goodness that mum’s share with their families. Thank you to all who assisted in making the Mother’s Day gift stall and morning tea such a marvelous success.

Dads - be patient; your turn a little later in the year!

Evening Parent Connect - Rescheduled

Our Parent Connect events continue to be well supported and to provide an excellent opportunity for parents to meet with members of the school to both hear about and speak to topics of importance and of interest. Aware that being scheduled during the morning the usual timing of these events prevents many parents from attending we are intent on scheduling a Parent Connect one evening.

The evening event scheduled for last term was cancelled at very late notice due to the sudden illness of our guest speaker.

We are scanning the school calendar to find another evening that is best placed to allow us to reschedule.

Watch out for further news!

On an associated note.

The most recent Parent Connect saw a lively discussion about the challenges faced by parents in keeping their children safe online. A common concern was the feeling among parents of not knowing how to set up their children’s devices to maximise security and safety.

If you would be interested in being part of workshop session designed to offer practical assistance in accessing and setting the features of your children’s devices, please contact the school to note your expression of interest.

The Government is intent supporting families and schools in prioritising online safety and has developed a number of resources to help parents and teachers keep young people safe in the cyber environment.

This link connects you to the  Officer for eSafety website.

In the meantime, use the graphic below to make a start on setting your children’s safety and security features.

Building Development

The refurbishment of the Food Technology teaching space is expected to be completed in a matter of a few weeks.

 

The schedule for the project’s completion was put back due a major revision of the scope and layout refit being undertaken. As a result we have ended up with a much larger space catering for greater numbers of students; a more efficient design for practical work; and better preparation and storage areas to accommodate a broad range of classes and hospitality for events.

Despite the inconvenience of an extended delay, the benefits of a better finished product will serve our students learning well into the future. We look forward to inviting you all to an event to celebrate the completion of this important project.

HomeWork Club comes to ACC

We are delighted to share with you news of this new initiative. To further support the work that is being done through our THRIVE Academic Mentoring program we are commencing a HomeWork Club aimed at helping students in Years 7-12 get the support they might need to complete work set for completion outside of class. Each Monday afternoon from 2:50 - 4:00 pm two teachers will be available to offer advice and assistance to any student who needs some help in starting or completing homework or assessments.

In addition, class teachers may use this provision as an opportunity to make a special appointment with a student to spend some extra time with them revising a concept of a skill.

A light afternoon refreshment will also be provided.

Particularly during this pilot phase, places may be limited, so booking a place using the online form at this link is essential.

HomeWork Club booking form: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/L3CH93H

A reminder - School Attendance and Family Travel

May we remind you that while it remains a parents prerogative to take their children out of school to undertake travel, recent changes in the legislation around recording school attendance mean that absence during term time for the purpose of  travel for family holidays are now to be recorded as “unjustified absence”. Applications for extended Leave for travel during term time for other reasons can still be applied for and approved. If you have any plans to undertake travel for an extended period of a week or more please do contact the school or download the application form from the school’s website.

https://marsdenpark.acc.edu.au/community/forms.html

NAPLAN Info.

Next week students in Years 3, 5, 7, and 9 will be participating in the NAPLAN tests. Last week the NSW Minister for Education expressed concerns that in his view the battery of NAPLAN tests were being “misused and abused”, leading to the improper “league-table ranking of schools” and to a “narrowing of teaching to the test”.

The Minister also made the point that a simple interpretation of NAPLAN results that fails to recognise the variation amongst student backgrounds and starting points or the important qualities of learning that are not measured by the tests may be misleading as to the value being added by schools.

We have been very careful to responsibly prepare students for their experience of NAPLAN without resorting to “teaching to the test”. All our teachers look forward to receiving the valuable information about student achievement that can be used to plan more effective teaching in the future.

If you would like any further information or if you have any question about the tests or your child’s participation in them, please don’t hesitate to contact the school.

Below is a link to the Parent Information page provided by the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA)

NESA Info for Parents

Change of Season - change of uniform - change to policy.

The first day of next week marks the “official” full expectation of winter Uniform requirements. Please assist us in keeping our standard of uniform high in showing pride in our community

The school’s uniform guide when can be accessed by the link below.

Unifying Uniforms

The Uniform and the Uniform Guide have been carefully and intentionally developed to help students maintain a standard of presentation that reflects well on the school. Please be advised that the uniform guide has recently been updated to provide greater clarity regarding acceptable variations to boys hairstyles and cuts.

Inserted into the policy guidelines is the following:

"Boys’ hair is to be neat, tidy, above the collar and must not hang over the face. Extreme styles, pony-tails and buns are not permitted."

We look forward to all families assisting us in maintaining high standards of uniform. If you would like to discuss any aspects of uniform, please make arrangements through reception.

Walking for Water

Next term, during week three, on Friday May 18, all of year 8 will be walking 6 kilometres around the campus to raise money for World Vision's 6K Walk to Water. 

They will also be creating a variety of awesome stalls to raise money that will help to bring life-changing clean water to children and communities in need. These stalls will be available at lunchtime on the day and all students can buy yummy goods to help the cause. Please encourage your children to bring their pocket money and change lives!

This charity event is open to family members and members from the community too. If you'd like to register and walk 6 kilometres with year 8 in the morning on May 18, please head to donate/register on our page!

https://6k-for-water-schools.everydayhero.com/au/accmp

Greater Western Sydney Careers Market

Limited places are still available for Year 10 to 12 students to attend this careers event on Thursday 24th May. The Greater Western Sydney Careers Market offers students the chance to explore and speak with the professionals from Universities, TAFE, Apprenticeship Centres, Group Training Organisations, Private Colleges, Professional Associations and Employers about further education and/or careers options available to them. You can register at the following page:

Greater Western Careers Market eventbright Registration Page

Year 9 Outdoor Education Camp

The Year 9 Outdoor Education camp is happening in Week 6 of this term. Year 9 parents should have received an email containing all relevant information and required permission forms. Please contact Ross Howard on 9421 7111 for more information.

Celebrations and Success.

Sports!

The last fortnight has seen the very successful running our our Cross Country carnivals for Primary and Secondary students. Participation by students was fantastic and both events proved to be great days of athletic effort and community spirit. Mr Keith and Mr Hearsey pass on their thanks to all the students who participated and  to all the staff and volunteers who help make the events such a success.

Congratulations also to Josh Sarina (Year 11) who was selected in the CSSA Open Boys Football Team to compete in the CIS Championships. Well done Josh. We pray you play well. 

Visual Art!

The quality of work of our students in the Creative Arts is outstanding. This was recently evident in the wonderful results achieved by students in Years 8 and 12 who entered work in the Art Competition of the Hawkesbury Show. ACC MP was awarded first place in the group painting section and

Our thanks and appreciation are extended to Visual Artist extraordinaire Mrs Suzie White for her excellent support and guidance of our art students.

Primary Take 2

Secondary Take 2

Secondary Information

Information for parents regarding changes to NAPLAN’s link to the Minimum Standards

http://educationstandards.nsw.edu.au/wps/portal/nesa/k-10/understanding-the-curriculum/naplan/naplan-parents

Supervisor Learner Driver Workshops:

If you have a learner driver in the family or will soon be supervising an L Plater then you should come along to our FREE Supervising Learner Drivers workshop.

We will be hosting this free two-hour presentation at school on Wednesday 16 May from 6.30-8.30pm. The session offers practical advice and information to parents/carers and supervisors on how to help Learner drivers become safer drivers. The presentation will provide information to help you:

  • Understand the Graduated Licensing Scheme and the current laws of L and P licence holders.
  • Complete the Learner Driver log book.
  • Understand the benefits of supervised, on-road driving experience.
  • Improve awareness of young driver issues.
  • Minimise the number of hours you need to supervise your young driver through the Safer Drivers Course and professional driving lessons.

Register your attendance here

Upcoming Events

  • Winter Uniform changeover complete: 14th May
  • NAPLAN: 15 - 18 May
  • Supervisor Learner Drivers Workshop: 16th May
  • Year 8 Walk to Water: 18th May
  • Year 12 Parent Teacher Interviews: 12th May
  • Year 9 camp: 6- 9 June
  • DE Residential Camp: 18-22 June
  • DE Residential Day School: 25-29 June
  • Last Day of Term 2: 6th July

SCHOOL CALEDNDAR