From the Middle School Leader

1 September 2017

IT issues flowchart

The students in the senior school have been asked to follow the attached flowchart when they have IT difficulties:

What do I do when I need IT help?

  • Follow the appropriate model as defined above,
  • Don’t find Mr. Hayes yourself and tell him
  • Don’t send Mr. Hayes an email with IT issues

Food for thought

The following two articles discuss parent relationships with their children. I found them useful.

 http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/life-and-relationships/parenting/i-went-on-holiday-with-just-one-of-my-kids-and-im-making-it-a-new-tradition-20170823-gy28us.html

http://community.today.com/parentingteam/post/how-to-ruin-your-relationship-with-your-teenager?cid=sm_fbn_pt

Consequences of non submission of assessment

Please find above the flowchart regarding non submission of assessment which is part of the College’s Senior School Assessment Guidleines which can be found at

https://mmcc.fireflycloud.net.au/Resources/Senior%20School%20%5BFi%5D/Senior%20School%20Information%20%5BFrh%5D/Policies%20and%20Documents%20%5BF181%5D/Policies/Senior%20School_Assessment%20Guidelines.pdf

A number of students need to ensure that they have adhered to assignment criteria sheets. The criteria sheets are very prescriptive and will lead to student success. Teachers also spend countless hours providing feedback on drafts. Students need to use this feedback to improve their final draft. All drafts should be submitted as if they are final drafts.

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News from the Senior School

4 August 2017

Brainstorm Production

On Monday, the students attended a Brainstorm production that focused on cyber bullying, social media, texting, bystanders and exclusion. This was an informative show with very relevant information. The students also viewed videos from Firefly (eSafety link in Senior School Information) during Wednesday’s assembly. The videos would be very worthwhile for parents to view also.

Following is a list of suggestions for parents offered by police to help protect children from becoming a victim on the Internet:

  • Keep your computer in a family room, not in a bedroom, that way you can supervise its use and what is being accessed. 
  • Understand parenting controls on your internet browser and how to block websites and emails. 
  • Don't allow your child to submit personal information online without your permission or knowledge of why they are submitting it. 
  • Try to interact with your child while they are on the internet - expressing an interest can be both informative, reassuring and educational to both you and the child. 
  • Not everyone on the internet is who he or she may seem. Changing your identity is an easy process and strangers online may be difficult to recognise. 
  • Familiarise yourself and talk to your child about who they contact online. 
  • Never allow your child to have an unsupervised meeting off-line with anyone they meet online. 
  • Educate your child on the dangers of opening mail, especially those with attachments. 

Study Tips

Study tips will be published at http://mmcc.fireflycloud.net.au/senior-school-information/study-tips each week. This week’s tips focus on planning, organization, homework and after school routines.

eSafety

eSafety tips will also be published at http://mmcc.fireflycloud.net.au/senior-school-information/esafety each week. This week’s tips focus on digital DNA, safe web surfing and protecting personal information.

Firefly

A reminder to parents that they can log on to Firefly using their child's login to access any of the following links and information, see student assessment tasks and access the content relevant to specific learning areas.

 

Code of Presentation

Congratulations to the students who wear their uniforms with pride. The current College Code of Presentation can be found on pages 17 and 18 of the College Diary. It can also be located at http://mmcc.fireflycloud.net.au/senior-school-information/uniform. The College’s expectation is that this code is adhered to door to door i.e. the uniform is worn correctly at all times, even outside of school hours.

Some sections to note:

HAIR: Hair styles of both boys and girls should be neat and tidy in appearance and should not be of an extreme type that will draw attention to themselves. No beads, colours, rat’s tails, tracks, etc. Moderation in appearance is required. Students should not use dye or blonding compounds in their hair, except for natural highlights that are natural to the individual students own hair colour. Hair should be cut in such a way that is does not hang over the students face.

BOYS HAIR: Pony tails are not permitted for boys and hair must be cut above the collar. It should be no shorter than a “Number 2” Hair should be clean, well groomed and neat. Boys must be clean shaven at all times.

GIRLS HAIR: Long hair should be tied up if it is shoulder length or longer. All hair accessories must be in the College colours.

JEWELLERY: Girls may wear a single pair of studs (no larger than a match head) or sleepers (no larger than a 5 cent piece) on the lower lobe. Students may also wear a religious necklace only. Boys and girls, no ear cuffs, rings, bracelets or neck chains. No other form of body piercing is permitted.

MAKE UP: Make up and nail polish are not permitted.

 

Homework Schedule

As a general guideline, homework will be undertaken nightly, following scheduled lessons, or over several nights in larger blocks of time.

Year Level

Homework Expectation

Expectation

Yrs 7 and 8

1 – 1 ½ hrs per night (average)        

Completion of set work / assignments/ study

Yrs 9 and 10

1 ½ - 2 hrs per night (average)

Completion of set work / assignments/ study

Yrs 11 and 12

2 – 3 hrs per night (average)

Completion of set work / assignments/ study

 

We also ask all parents to encourage their child to read every night/or as often as possible.

The completion of all types of homework is taken very seriously at Mary MacKillop Catholic College.

Where a student persistently fails to complete homework satisfactorily, the teacher will take appropriate action and, if necessary, will contact parents.

All students are to have their diary with them in each lesson so their homework can be written down.

NOTE: The expectation is that if a child does not have set homework activities or assignments that they are revising the content from the day's lessons to maximise retention and understanding.

 

Senior Assessment Schedule

The Term 3 senior assessment schedules have been uploaded on Firefly:

http://mmcc.fireflycloud.net.au/senior-school-information/year-7-assessment

http://mmcc.fireflycloud.net.au/senior-school-information/year-8-assessment

http://mmcc.fireflycloud.net.au/senior-school-information/year-9-assessment

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Fruit Creations Mystery Meal

4 August 2017

The Year 8 Food Technology students created some fantastic meals on Friday 14th July as part of a Mystery Meal assignment. Focusing their design efforts on cooking with a staple ingredient such as potato, sweet potato, corn and pumpkin, students cooked up an array of healthy and delicious light meals that tantalized the taste buds. Recently, the Year 7 students also had a challenge to create an attractive fruity design to encourage their peers to eat 2 serves of fruit per day. This was a terrific opportunity for students to combine creativity with culinary skills with some colourful fruit creations developed by each group.

It is wonderful to see these young chefs working together to learn about the importance of healthy eating while also having great fun in the kitchen!

Vivienne Holman (Teacher) & Connie Coverdale (Design Technology Aide)

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From the Principal, Peter Murphy

21 July 2017

Catholic Education Week

Sunday, July 23 celebrates the commencement of Catholic Education Week. I invite all families to join in this celebration by coming to the 8:00 am Sunday Mass. As a way of thanking the Parishioners and College families, we will be hosting a bacon and egg roll breakfast. All are welcome, and it’s free!

Catholic Education Week is an opportunity for all Catholic schools to celebrate and promote their distinctive mission and ethos. 

Catholic education strives to make a difference in the lives of those in our schools and in the wider community by challenging young people to live out the message of Jesus and to reach their full potential as compassionate, contributing, life-giving members of society.

Catholic education:

  • Is a faith based education which places the values of Jesus at its centre
  • Is a high quality, holistic education for 1 in 5 young Queenslanders, educating them to be well-informed, highly skilled and constructive members of the community
  • Values diversity and treats each student with dignity enabling them in turn to promote and respect the dignity of all
  • Nurtures in students a commitment to social justice and a critical social consciousness
  • Prepares students for global responsibilities through stewardship of the earth’s resources
  • Is an integral part of the local and universal Church
  • Occurs in welcoming, inclusive, and connected communities.

 

The theme for this year's Catholic Education Week celebrations will be:

Sharing the Journey

The idea of journey as a central theme has been drawn from a number of quotes from Pope Francis as well as a number of biblical references. Pope Francis has said: 

Today, we need a Church capable of walking at people’s side, of doing more than simply listening to them; a Church which accompanies them on their journey. 

The whole journey of life is a journey of preparation…to see, to feel, to understand the beauty of what lies ahead, of the homeland towards which we walk. 

What is important is the whole journey by which we arrive at the mission the Lord entrusts to us.

 

School Improvement Survey

This year our school will be participating in a School Review and Improvement survey managed by Research Australia Development and Innovation Institute (RADII). As well as school staff and students from Years 5 - 9, all parents are invited to participate in the survey. The survey provides valuable feedback for the future directions of our school.

On Monday, July 24 RADII will send all parents a personalised invitation to complete the survey online. If both parents' email addresses are on file at the school, the invitation will be sent to both parents. However, the survey will close once the first person has completed it. If you do not wish to complete the survey simply delete it.

The survey will take approximately 10 minutes to complete. You can complete the survey from anywhere you have access to the internet. The survey will close on Sunday, 13 August 2017 for parents.

I encourage you to be very honest in your responses to the surveys. All responses go directly to RADII so they are confidential and anonymous. When the surveys are completed, and responses aggregated by RADII, overall data is sent to us so that we can then share the findings with you.

 

Further Expansion

Mary MacKillop Catholic College is growing.

Construction has commenced for Stage 2 of the secondary section of the College. This stage will create a permanent senior school administration building, a Technology building to initially incorporate Metal Technology, Timber Technology, and STEM. The build will introduce an additional Science laboratory, Graphics room, Textiles Technology, four more general learning rooms as well as spaces to accommodate Music and Art.

The existing MacKillop Centre will soon be unable to accommodate the College population. Stage 2 of building creates a second auditorium space with the capacity to expand over time to accommodate a population of up to 1500. Its initial form in 2018 it will be a shelter area incorporating toilets, change rooms and store rooms.

In 2018 Mary MacKillop Catholic College will extend its enrolment to offer classes from P-10. This growth will continue until the College will present its first Year 12 group in 2020. In the coming year, the College anticipates running three streams of classes for Year 7. This represents a positive enrolment trend as the senior section of the College continues to gain a reputation as a place of educational excellence.

In such a competitive educational market, it has been most important to create points of difference that would allow the College to shine when compared to other good schools. Mary Mac now boasts after school programs in Drama, Music, Art, and Dance. After school Homework classes are available four afternoons each week. The instrumental program, commenced 18 months ago, now has an impressive 115 students taking individual instrument tuition. Once proficient with their instrument, students are invited to participate in various ensembles including guitar, wind, brass, string, drum, and vocal.

Community positive regard for the College has resulted in an unprecedented number of enrolment applications for Prep 2018. In order to be able to accommodate this demand, the College has sought approval from the Catholic Schools Office to operate a fourth Prep class.

 

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From the Principal, Peter Murphy

9 June 2017

CHARACTER…

Manette O’Neill was a teacher on New York’s lower East Side.  One day she gave a mathematics test to her class.  When she corrected the papers, she found that twelve boys had given the same unusually wrong answer to the same problem.  She had the boys stay after the school.  She didn’t ask any questions.  She didn’t make any accusations.  She simply wrote 23 words on the blackboard and had the boys copy them one hundred times.

Here is what Ms O’Neill wrote:

The measure of a man’s character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.

(Thomas Babington Macauley)

Years later, author Jerome Weidman recalled the incident, saying:

I don’t know about the other eleven boys.  Speaking for the only one of the dozen with whom I am on intimate terms, I can say this was the most important single lesson of my life.

Young people learn many important lessons at school. Very often the most profound learnings, attitudes and understandings, the ones that can be life moulding, come from the example and wisdom a significant teacher. I say this with no intention of devaluing the place of the formal curriculum, but rather to recognise the important role of teacher. A young person’s love of learning, care for others, belief in self, love and respect, are all learnings that grow from good student/teacher relationships. Faith, similarly, is ‘caught’ rather than taught. St. Paul often reminded the early Christian communities that others would be inspired to follow Christ by their example – first do Christianity and only then talk about it. (This is quite a loose interpretation of St Paul’s letters, but, I believe, true to the spirit.)

At Mary MacKillop Catholic College we have a great many excellent teachers, whose lived example speak with a clarity and lasting impression that words will never match. I take the opportunity this week to remind us of this important fact and to formally thank the teachers for the work that they lovingly take on for the benefit of all.

A teacher affects eternity, he can never tell where his influence stops. (Henry Adams)

 

ANTI-BULLYING STRATEGIES

At Mary MacKillop Catholic College -

  • We want to base our relationships on the teaching of Jesus:

“Whatever you do to the least of my brothers and sisters you do unto me.”

  • We want a safe, secure and welcoming place in which everyone is treated with dignity and respect.
  • We do not want bullying. This means that no one should be hurt, threatened, frightened or harassed by physical or verbal means.
  • We do not want therefore, any gossiping, name-calling, teasing, intimidating, excluding, swearing at or humiliating, using threats or stand over tactics, throwing objects, taking or using possessions without permission, hitting, pushing, or fighting, hiding or damaging somebody’s belongings, hurtful looks, rude gestures, making faces, etc.
  • We want everyone – teachers, students and parents – to deal with bullying, which may involve reporting it, whether they are targets or witnesses.
  • We want to ensure anyone can protest against bullying and get support from the school.

You can create an environment free from Bullying by…..

  • Dealing with conflicts openly, peacefully and respectfully.
  • Accepting responsibility for your words and actions.
  • Taking appropriate action if you are being bullied or if you become aware that someone else is being bullied.
  • Examining your behaviour and stopping any bullying you have been doing, even if you don’t think it is all that serious.
  • Responding to victims of bullying in a supportive and caring way.
  • Demanding that bullies stop that behaviour.

If you Bully someone else…..

  • You will be required to stop it.
  • Your teachers and College Leadership Team will monitor your behaviour.
  • The normal disciplinary consequences will follow.
  • Your parents will be informed.
  • You may be required to get help to change your pattern of behaviour.

Remember…..

Bullying has no place in our College.

When Bullying happens between students…..

If you are being bullied you can choose how to respond to the situation.  Whatever you decide to do, act promptly to prevent the problem getting worse.

Positive Strategies

What Not to Do

  1. Try to handle it yourself
  • Be assertive; look the person in the eye.
  • Predict situations that may lead to bullying and avoid these.
  • Control your fear.
  • Look at your behaviour and see if it is, in any way, contributing to the bullying.
  • Realise they are trying to upset you – don’t give them the satisfaction.

     2. Get some advice from

  • Your teachers
  • Your parents
  • The counsellor
  • A trusted adult
  • Another staff member
  • A member of the College leadership team

      3. Report the bullying to a teacher, counsellor or a member    of the College leadership team and keep reporting it until it  stops.

Don’t argue with them.

Don’t act with aggression or retaliate in any way.

Don’t ignore them unless you are excellent at never showing any irritation.

Don’t just do nothing; the situation will only continue

Don’t say ‘I’ll keep it all to myself’, and then be miserable.

   

In the coming weeks, all students in Years 4 to 9 will complete the annual antibullying survey. This represents a central piece of data, collected to inform the College of actions to reduce the incidence of bullying and encourage and enhance a safe and welcoming environment.

Prior to completing the survey, all students will be reminded of what bullying is and of what it is not.

Our College is generally a safe and supportive environment for young people. Proactive strategies such as the antibullying survey and its subsequent follow up, help ensure that the College remains such a place and is deliberately taking action to improve.

 

PREP ENROLMENTS 2018

Enrolment applications for Prep 2018 are very strong. Once the College offers enrolment for 2018 it is highly likely that there will be no remaining places for late applications.

Unfortunately, our enrolment data does not allow the College to determine if an existing family has a child expecting to commence school in 2018. I would dearly love to avoid the situation where an existing family misses out. To this end, I request all families to ensure that they have their Prep enrolment applications in to the College as a matter of urgency. Additionally, if you are aware of a family not currently connected to the College who are intending to apply for a Prep enrolment, please encourage them to act now.

 

Talking to children about Terrorism

Unfortunately, in recent months, there is a near weekly incident of terrorism in some part of the world. Michael Grose, a highly respected psychologist and author, has released the following information for parents who may be grappling with how to sensibly and effectively address this concern when it is raised by their child. Please see the attachment to read his advice.

 

ATHLETICS CARNIVAL

My Congratulations go to Kate McWha, our Sport Coordinator, for her exceptional efforts in creating and coordinating an event that maximised student participation and involvement. Students experienced a much greater sense of pride, commitment and growth in House spirit. They were extremely active throughout the day. Many parents spoke to me of how pleased they were with the new format, especially with the nominated event times that allowed them to ensure that they would be present for their child’s favoured events.

I am delighted with the changes in the 2017 Athletics Carnival and look forward to an even better event in 2018.

 

Brett Forte

On Wednesday this week a funeral was held to celebrate the life of Senior Constable Brett Forte. As a Christian community, we believe that, in death, life is changed - not ended. We believe that all that binds us together in life and friendship does not end in death. I invite each family in the Mary MacKillop community to pray this prayer or one of their own choice for the Forte family.

Father,

your son declared blessed all those who mourn,

knowing that no-one can mourn unless they love very much.

Bring courage and strength to those who now mourn

because they have loved greatly.

In your loving kindness bring them healing and inner peace,

and lead the one they mourn into your kingdom

of light, happiness, and peace. 

Amen

 

God bless

Peter Murphy

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Food Revolution Day 2017

26 May 2017

Year 7 and Year 8 students had the opportunity to cook pizzas and investigate the amount of sugar present in popular drinks as part of Food Revolution Day on Friday, 19 May 2017. The day was designed to educate and inspire people to cook healthy food using fresh ingredients.

Each student created a pizza masterpiece using a yeast based dough and a range of delicious toppings. Our young chefs had a fantastic time sharing their pizzas with friends and family and are keen to learn some more life cooking skills.

Connie Coverdale, Laboratory, Food, and Applied Design & Technology Aid

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Senior School Open Day 2017

11 May 2017

The College Open Day showcased many of the wonderful things that are happening in our senior school. The vast majority of our senior students volunteered to assist, as did 100% of the senior school staff and many of the junior school staff. In addition to this we had this assistance of many, many parents, who not only cooked and served, but also spread the good word of their own experience at Mary MacKillop.

Student performances were outstanding and the whole morning exemplified the both welcome and culture of excellence we strive maintain and develop. We are a highly regarded College in our region. Thank you and ‘Well done’ to all.

Peter Murphy, Principal

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