Welcome to our Week 5 Newsletter for Term 1. This term has presented us with a range of challenges and changes, and we are so very grateful for your support as we ride the wave of change together. I am pleased to let you know that you no longer need to check in at Education sites so we will begin removing the QR codes from our gates. Masks remain and we also ask that you only enter the site if your child cannot be dropped off at the gate. If you do need to enter, we ask that you move off in a timely manner rather than waiting within the school grounds. We could not have foreseen the numbers of positive cases that we have had throughout the school community, and we will continue to follow the advice given to us by the Education Outbreak team of SA Health.
Over the past couple of weeks our Year 6, and then Year 5 families have been asked to stay home for a 3-day circuit breaker to prevent further spread and to ensure that all positive cases are discovered before students return. We understand that this is very difficult for you and are also aware that there may still be more interruptions for other year levels in the coming weeks. We also have numbers of staff out isolating so we ask for your patience as we cover essential roles. If you or someone in your household does receive a positive COVID-19 result, please let us know and report positive RAT tests to SA Health.
SA Health has also asked us to encourage you to consider vaccination along with physical distancing, face masks and hygiene practices. They also clarified that siblings of students who are confirmed cases are close contacts, not classroom contacts, and should not be attending school. Once your child has recovered from COVID-19 and isolated for the 10 days, they can return to school and will not need to be cleared again for 8 weeks. If you and your children are unwell, please know that we are praying for you and looking forward to your healthy return. If children are home and healthy, we have provided information about some ‘at home’ work that children can access including some literacy and maths apps with logins that you have received. Please follow the link to our website for access https://www.bethany.sa.edu.au/for-parents/covid19-student-info . Once again if children are unwell, we encourage them to rest and recover.
We have sent out information to the relevant year levels for our Athletics Days however we have a further update as we will be moving our Athletics days to early next term. We will also be updating our cross-country day so stay tuned. The best place to view all information is the school’s website, which will be updated as needed – BCS Sports Website Page. At this time, Reception students are booked in for their swimming lessons in Week 9 which we will continue to assess as we get closer to the time and have more current health information.
Next Monday is a public holiday for the Adelaide Cup so we encourage you to enjoy some time to rest and be refreshed. Our Reception students start their Wednesday’s at school next week and are then full-time for the remainder of the year. This first 5 weeks does provide a good transition to school, and I have been very proud of the settled start our students have had considering all the changes around them.
We have sent out a broadcast earlier this week to register interest in choir for Years 2 to Year 6 students. Choir will meet weekly on Wednesday afternoons from 3:15-4:15pm in the PAC. We will be in touch with those who register interest to confirm the start date.
Dental for Schools will be visiting in Week 8 and Week 9 and you will have received a notice at the beginning of the term. Forms are due by March 15th and if you have any questions, you can contact Dental for Schools on 7225 8142.
I was reminded of the words of Jesus in John 14:27 to his disciples and I would like to encourage you that He has given us the gift of ‘peace of mind and heart’. This peace may not be seen around you, but we can rely on Him to bring peace within. I pray that you will find some times of refreshing and rest and that His peace will fill your heart and mind.
Forgive us for doing wrong, as we forgive others.
The Importance of School
Every child in Australia has not only the right to an education, but it is actually unlawful for them to be prevented from coming to school. It is a legal obligation for parents to enrol a child into a school.
Being enrolled into a school means so much more than fulfilling a law. Students being an active, present member of a school community helps develop critically important social and emotional skills, connectivity with a community and academic growth. There is a significant amount of research to support the need of consistent attendance at school, which includes the findings that school absenteeism is cumulative, and it can have an impact on academic success and school attendance in the latter years of school (Hancock et al, 2013; Zubrick, 2014).
If we think of schooling as an active choice to get fit and healthy to achieve a fitness goal for the future. We begin a physical fitness training and healthy eating programme that aims to get us to get our goal. If we aim to run a triathlon, we don’t start at the finishing line. We have to build up our physical and mental stamina in order to cross the finish line successfully.
Schools do this gradual building up of social, emotional, physical and academic stamina over the time a child begins their formal education. This is safe guarded by following a national curriculum to ensure the journey toward success is followed. Not everyone learns at the same rate, just as not all athletes train at the same rate. That would be like asking someone like me take up training for a triathlon alongside a seasoned triathlete. I am not going to have the same needs as that athlete. However, schools have highly trained educators who are able to make professional decisions to help support children of a similar age to go through a process of systematic learning.
Sometimes a child will need additional support. This support within school comes from our Diverse Learning Team. Together, in partnership with the child’s teacher and parents, the Diverse Learning Team staff will determine the areas of need and provide the required support so that the child is provided the necessary skills and access to additional support.
Occasionally a family may feel that their child will benefit from additional tuition, which is on top of the school support. Tuition outside of school can prove to be a positive experience, however private tuition is a supplement to formal schooling, not a substitution.
Teachers spend years training beyond their university degree to provide sequential learning plans. If private tuition occurs within school hours, the child might have 1:1 literacy and math in the 1-2 hour sessions, but will miss the other curriculum areas and the fundamental building blocks taught in class for literacy and numeracy, which will negate the benefits of private tuition.
Navigating a worldwide pandemic has challenged many areas of society, and education has not been spared. South Australia seems to have been spared from much of the pandemic which began in 2020 despite the notable state ‘lockdowns’ experienced in 2020-2021. Generally speaking, however, we have not seen prolonged, consistent lockdowns requiring excessive online learning.
Truly, our greatest challenge has been coming into 2022 with our borders opened and the COVID-19 Omicron variant raising our case numbers and hospitalisations to a previously unheard number. This has caused some anxiety amongst some of our families attending Bethany Christian School (BCS).
One response to the anxiety over COVID has to been to withhold a child from their face-to-face learning. We know that vaccines help our immune systems to learn how to fight an illness, but they do not stop us from getting sick. Withholding a child from school because they have not yet been vaccinated or are not fully vaccinated is not a valid reason for not attending school.
Any child who misses school must have an authorised absence. This is because there is a very strong link between student attendance and a child’s academic achievement, and the more absences a child has increases the impact of their learning. In short, “every day counts and there is no ‘safe’ threshold for absences” (Hancock et al. 2013). As a school, we are required by law to report our attendance statistics. There are three instances where ongoing absences are formally authorised via educational forms:
These forms can be collected at our Administration office upon request. Once they are filled in, they are then submitted to the Principal for official authorisation. The ED175 B applications must include a plan of getting the child back to full time school attendance within a 4 week period. Filling in the form does not automatically approve your child’s absence, as this is at the Principal’s discretion. Please be very aware that withdrawing a child from school for in school hours private tuition most likely will be an unauthorised absence.
In short, no absence is considered unimportant. Your child’s whole education is vitally important, as there is a direct correlation to their future academic and employment success (AITSL, 2019). If you are worried about your child’s academic progress or about COVID-19, please speak to your child’s teacher. For any COVID-19 related queries, please ask to speak to our school nurse, Priya Wilson. We are here to help.
AITSL. (2019). Spotlight: Attendance Matters. Retrieved from aitsl: Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership Limited: https://www.aitsl.edu.au/tools-resources/resource/spotlight-attendance-matters
Hancock, K. J., Shepherd, C. C., Lawrence, D., & & Zubrick, S. R. (2013). Student attendance and educational outcomes: Every day counts. Canberra: Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.
Zubrick, S. (2014). School Attendance: Equities and inequities in growth trajectories of academic performance. ACER: Quality and Equality; What does research tell us? Adelaide: ACER.
“The effects of non-attendance on achievement are cumulative and can impact both academic achievement and attendance in future years of schooling” – Hancock et al., 2013; Zubrick, 2014
Term 1 Reminders
Please remember to keep our children safe. Observe the rules of our car parks. Please do not queue while waiting for your child. This causes our lines to be exceptionally long and frustratingly slow. If your child is not at the turning circle or the kiss ‘n’ drop when you arrive, please go and park.
Our turning circle and kiss ‘n’ drop areas only work efficiently if drivers are patient, courteous and remember that it is a privilege which comes with responsibility, not a right. Please show respect to the teaching staff trying to manage the traffic on school site. Let’s be kind to one another and work together to keep our children safe.
A massive thank you to all our parent school community for following our COVID-19 safe practices, avoiding coming on site and wearing a mask. COVID-19 is a tremendous challenge for us all. While we have had active cases of COVID-19 on school site, this might have been far worse had we had a greater number of people on site.
I wish you all the very best for you and your family in the week ahead.
God bless you,
As it is Week 5 of Term 1, all full fee payments are due by this Friday to take advantage of the 5% discount. The school is also well aware that with the current COVID conditions the school community is facing there could be financial constraints on families who are now in isolation. As a school, we are always here to assist if we can. One particular resource from Services Australia might be of assistance to you. The link will take you to the government’s pandemic leave disaster payment where you could be eligible for up to $750 a week in support from the government during this time. https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/pandemic-leave-disaster-payment
As always if you wish to speak to the finance team for further help or clarification, they can be contacted via firstname.lastname@example.org and a phone call appointment can be arranged to see what further assistance may be available.
Netball | Reception – Year 6
(must already be 5 years old)
Bethany Christian School offers a Weekly Netball program.
This is a user pay program staffed by approved volunteer coaches
AFL Football | Year 2 - 6
Bethany Christian School offers a Weekly AFL Program.
This is a user pay program staffed by approved volunteer coaches
Thank you to those parents who have raised questions about the status of classroom contact notification and participating in weekend sports.
There are no mandates as to what must occur if your child is a classroom contact and so we ask you to use your discretion as to what impact attending the event will have on your child and others they will be in contact with. The advice is to minimise risk to others when outside of school. Should your child display symptoms then please do not attend the weekend match and follow SA Health recommendations.
Please communicate your attendance each week with your team coach so they know if they have enough players to take the court, please do this as early as reasonably possible.
Thank you for your continued support.
|Sport||Grade||Div||Team||Opponent||Coach's Pick||Match Result|
|Netball||U08||U08||Wild Stars||Gems Emerald||Hannah Mc||L||0||15|
|Netball||U10||U10||Bright Stars||Salisbury North Hawks Green||Ariana D||L||0||6|
|Basketball||U08||Blue||Bulls||Heccies 8||Jaxon C||D||8||8|
|Basketball||U10||Orange||Boomers||Wings Bombers||Elijah C||L||10||12|
|Sport||Grade||Div||Team||Opponent||Coach's Pick||Match Result|
|Netball||U08||U08||Wild Stars||Salisbury North Hawks Green||Elise B||L||1||6|
|Netball||U10||U10||Bright Stars||Renegades Gold||Ira P||L||0||6|
|Basketball||U08||Blue||Bulls||76ers Dolphins||Blake H||W||8||7|
|Basketball||U10||Orange||Boomers||Kings Eagles||Charlie M||W||13||7|
|Monday 14th March||Adelaide Cup Day|
|Monday 28th March to Friday 8th April||School Dental Visits|
|Thursday 7th April||Parent Teacher Interviews|
|Monday 4th April to Friday 8th April||Swimming Lessons for Receptions|
|Monday 11th April||Pupil Free Day|
|Tuesday 12th April||Parent Teacher Interviews|
|Thursday 14th April||Last day of term - 12.10pm dismissal|
|2022 Term Dates|
|Term 1||Monday 14th February to Thursday 14th April|
|Term 2||Tuesday 3rd May to Friday 8th July|
|Term 3||Tuesday 26th July to Friday 30th September|
|Term 4||Monday 17th October to Wednesday 14th December|
|ELC||Monday to Friday|
|RHan||Tuesday and Thursday|
|RHay||Monday and Friday|
|RK||Tuesday and Thursday|
|1TC||Thursday and Friday|
|1D||Thursday and Friday|
|1P||Thursday and Friday|
|2WS||Thursday and Friday|
|2R||Thursday and Friday|
|2Z||Thursday and Friday|
|3HR||Monday and Friday|
|3M||Monday and Thursday|
|3T||Tuesday and Friday|
|4G||Tuesday and Thursday|
|4PS||Monday and Wednesday|
|4W||Monday and Friday|
|5R||Wednesday and Friday|
|5K||Tuesday and Thursday|
|5T||Wednesday and Friday|
|6SC||Wednesday and Friday|
|6T||Wednesday and Friday|
|6W||Wednesday and Friday|
Newsletter published: Wednesday, March 9 2022< Back to newsletters