Principal's Post

Seriously good things are happening. No matter where I turn at the moment there is a sense of gratitude that I find surrounding me. Whether it is here at St Columba’s or within all other moments that make up my life, it just seems relentlessly positive. There was a saying I once heard, cannot remember who from, but it was, ‘fear and worries disappear when we are grateful’. This is so true. I am not sure if I have told you before, but every day I wake up and am in the habit of asking myself these three things:

  1. What am I grateful for in my life?
  2. Who will I serve today?
  3. What is one exciting thing about my day?

I also say a quick good morning to St Mary of the Cross MacKillop. I connected with Mary Mack when I was the Principal there, and still connect with her as I walk through our St Columba’s church in the morning and afternoon. She keeps an eye out for all of us. She knows what we need and when we need it. So I usually say a quick Hail Mary while making the morning coffee. Sometimes I challenge myself to say as many Hail Marys as I can within the time it takes for the kettle to boil. Yes, I know, no percolator, pods or coffee machine, just the kettle and some instant coffee.

Anyhow, my point is to stay focused on gratefulness. Changes the world you know. Changes who we are as people. Try these three questions right now, and no matter what time you read this, I promise you, the world will change for that moment. You still have time, right now to do it. There will be something that you can still do that is so exciting. Now, that could be the fact you might go to sleep half an hour earlier because your kids are asleep, and yes, sleep, precious sleep awaits. Now imagine having an undisturbed night’s sleep, there is something that I take for granted now, but for you guys with young families, this must be the absolute GOLD!

Here are just a few examples of the attitude of gratefulness over the last couple of weeks happening right here, right now.


Sacrament of Penance

Gratefulness in abundance last night. I love this sacrament. It is the quiet sacrament that forms the foundations of goodness, compassion and true understanding of each of us as people. During this sacrament, we sit in silence for over half an hour, being present to the experience of our children and their connection to the gift of forgiveness. I am not sure why, but it always gets to me, but especially last night. Maybe it is the emotional Italian that comes out in me, but I had a cricket ball in my throat last night when I went to speak at the end of the evening to thank everyone. Found myself a bit choked up. I wanted to say a special thank you to our teachers who prepared our kids and to our parents for their support. Thank you especially to Penny, Mitch, Kerry and Megan for the effort and care that went into the evening. Also to Carolyn and Julie from our parish for their care of our students from other year levels that made their sacrament with our Year 3s. Talking to them after the sacrament confirmed again for me just how blessed we are to have our school and parish so closely connected. Wonderful people who always go out of their way to support us. To Fr Andrew, who sincerely cares for our kids. His gentleness with our families and staff is something we appreciate immensely. Fr Nelson, who was my priest at St Augustine’s when I was first a Principal, assisted Fr Andrew last night. We could not ask for more. Fr Nelson is just like Fr Andrew. No wonder they are good mates.

To our staff who came along to support our kids. We are always grateful for the extras you do to genuinely care for our families and kids, but also for each other. This is quality. To our families, for your reverence during the ceremony. You continue to show what is true about St Columba’s people. You show it in actions and the way you kept the specialness of the evening at the centre. This respect is something that came through your children in the way they received the sacrament for the first time. You model for your children in every instance, and this was significant. It is like the choir. Our parents who were waiting to collect the choir kids waited patiently and respectfully. Again, going the extra yards to support what we do. It was just another example of the specialness of this place, the specialness of the people. No wonder I love it here.


Wine and Cheese Night

How crazy was the weather that came through last Friday around 6 pm? Now, if ever there was a sign of gratefulness, have a look at the numbers of parents that rolled up. The storm hit and the downpour came, but nothing was going to stop the energy of our St Col’s families. Your response as parents is something the P & F were extremely grateful for. Your actions of turning up showed the team of organisers just how grateful you were for the work they had put into getting the night prepared. Never underestimate this goodness. It is what creates a culture of we can do anything if we stick together. You know it, the chopsticks theory. Put one or two chopsticks together, then we are breakable. Get ten, twenty, one hundred chopsticks, bound together, UNBREAKABLE! Clear as day on Friday night.

I always talk about how I am the luckiest principal in the world because I have our St Col’s Kids, but never think I do not know how lucky I am to have you as parents. Special thanks to our P & F for organising a terrific night for our parents. You created a warm and relaxed atmosphere for everyone, even with the challenges of the rain and the cold. Quality people, good times.


Book Week Parade

Where do we begin to thank everyone for their efforts in creating a pretty special morning to start the week? We know how much effort goes into a Book Week Parade, especially when on a Monday morning. To all our parents and kids, WOW! You always bring such enthusiasm and excitement to days such as this. Special mention to Rita Cuthbert, our librarian. What a champion of books and the driver of the excitement around the week. Rita creates such a welcoming and inviting environment within the walls of our library and beyond. It is a place where we can find adventure, quiet and so much more. Thank you again to our staff who always engage and participate with energy for our Book Week Parade. Fun times and again and abundance of good people.


Website Notifications

As we continue to develop our website, we have set up notifications to parents that will come through SMS. The two key notifications will be when The Donegal [newsletter] goes live and for Merit Award winners. Merit Award notifications will go out to parents by Tuesday morning on the week of the Assembly. Thank you again for your feedback on the website. Our team continues to work on managing the website to ensure it meets the needs of our parents.


Father’s Day Breakfast

The Pastoral Care team are busy organising breakfast for all the dad’s/grandad’s/Uncles.  The breakfast is on Friday 30th August at 7.30am.  Cost is $2.50 per child and $2.50 per adult.  Further information and RSVP slips are attached to this newsletter.

Kindy dads are also invited to visit the classroom for a ‘Stay and Play’ from 8.20am to 8.45am on the morning of the Father’s Day breakfast.



Morning Tea Get Together

A couple of months back, Trish and Faye, icons of St Columba’s School, held an afternoon tea for any parents who wished to meet for a cuppa. The dynamic duo would like to hold a couple of morning teas in the next few weeks. A cuppa and a chat. The dates are Tuesday 3 September and Thursday 5 September both at 9.00 am. The reason for the two morning teas in the one week is to allow our Pre-Kindy parents the opportunity to attend after dropping their little ones off at school. All parents are welcome to attend. Special thanks to Trish and Faye for continuing to add to our community spirit and the connection of our families to St Columba’s. It is always about the people.


School Uniform Update

A uniform focus over the next couple of weeks with be hair ties, scrunchies, bows and earrings. The following is a reminder regarding the colours that can be worn.

Hair ties, scrunchies, bows etc:

Academic Uniform: Black, white and green.

Sport Uniforms: Faction colours with their sport uniform.


Earrings must be studs or sleepers. Decorative earrings are not to be worn.


School Banking

School banking continues on a Tuesday morning, however we will need a parent to volunteer to take on the role as banking coordinator in the near future. Jennifer Benfell has been volunteering her time over the last couple of years, but will not be continuing into the future. Jen will keep the banking going for the remainder of the term as we seek another parent to take the role on. If you have any interest in finding out more about what is required, please check in with Lisa at the office and we will put you in contact with Jen. We thank Jen for her time and commitment to school banking. We sincerely appreciate the time committed and the passion with which Jen has taken this on.


Athletics Carnival 2019

As we build up to the 2019 Athletics Carnival on Friday 20 September, Jo McCluskey is organising all events over the coming weeks. Some students have been mentioning to Jo that they will not be here on the day. If you know your child will be away on the day due to other commitments, please send through an absentee note via the school website so as Jo can plan more accurately for the individual and team game events. We appreciate your effort sis assisting with this matter.


Nikon Microscope

Recently, we received a donation of a Nikon Microscope. We thank Mark Doyle for the microscope as students will be using this to look at details of samples throughout their activities. It will certainly have the WOW factor when they start looking at rock samples etc.


Quiz Night – Bayswater City Saints Netball Club and Bayswater Bears Football Club

Our Bayswater City Saints and Bayswater Bears are holding a combined Quiz Night on Saturday 24 August 2019 at 6:00pm. This is a terrific opportunity to test your pop quiz skills against the best. These two community clubs provide wonderful opportunities for our St Columba’s kids to participate in weekend sport. It promises to be a fun-filled night. Please see further details in our Community News section.

With the busyness of the weeks ahead, please continue to find the moments of gratefulness. It will make a difference to your day. We find so many connections when we do start out day with the three things I said at the start of my Post. Look after yourself, be gentle and find time to be still when you get the chance. I hear you, be still, when can I get a chance for that?

All the best for the final round of the AFL this weekend. The Dockers and Kangas are out, so all the best to the Coasters. Looking good for a Top 2 spot. That will set you on the campaign for back-to-back. Hope the Dockers fans out there are going okay after Ross Lyon departing yesterday.

Thanks again for always being a wonderful support for your children and our community. Enjoy!



School Counsellor News


What to Say When Your Child Doesn’t Want to Go to School
By The Understood Team






There are lots of reasons kids might ask to stay home from school sometimes, including just needing to take a day off to recharge. But if your child often wants to skip school, it’s important to understand why. How you respond can either shut down a conversation or open it up.

Here are some helpful things to say when your child doesn’t want to go to school:

Your child says…You may think…What might be going onWhat you can say
“I don’t feel like going.”Your child doesn’t take school seriously.Kids don’t usually act out for no reason. It’s possible your child is having a hard time at school. It could be something very recent or something that’s been building for a long time.“I wonder if you want to stay home because things aren’t going well at school. When you get home, let’s talk about what’s most difficult and figure out what we can do to make it better.”
“I’m too tired to go.”Your child gets plenty of sleep, so that’s just an excuse.School can be exhausting. That’s especially true if kids are struggling in some way. It takes a lot of energy to try to keep up or hide difficulties.“It surprises me you’re tired. I thought you were sleeping well. Is there something you’ve been working extra hard at or that’s using up a lot of your energy? Sometimes, just worrying can be tiring.”
“I hate school.”Your child’s being overdramatic.Sometimes a specific bad experience or trouble with one aspect of school can cast a cloud over everything else.“I know there’s a lot that you like at school. Is there something in particular that’s making you so unhappy that you want to stay home?”
“The kids are mean.”Your child has a few friends, so this must be an overreaction.It can be tough for some kids to size up social situations and fit in. They may even be the targets of bullying.“I’m sorry kids are being mean. What are they doing? Can you tell me who they are or what grade they’re in? Would you like me to talk to your teacher and come up with a plan?”
“School’s too hard.”Your child does OK in school, so this is about not wanting to work hard.School isn’t always easy, even when kids seem to be doing OK. Sometimes kids can’t meet all the expectations. And when that happens, they can feel like failures.“It sounds like things aren’t going as well as you’d like at school. What’s the most challenging thing about school right now?”
“I forgot to do my homework again.”Your child’s irresponsible.For some kids, keeping track of assignments and managing time is really tough, no matter how hard they try. And if it happens a lot, they might feel embarrassed about it.“You seem to be having trouble staying on top of your work. Do you feel like that’s a challenge for you? We can try different ways to help you stay organized.”

When you talk to your child about not wanting to go to school, it helps you understand what’s going on. Kids don’t always know what to say, though. So it’s important to pay attention to when and why your child gets frustrated.

Find out what to do if you think your child is being bullied. Help your child build self-advocacy skills, too. It’s important for kids to be able to speak up for themselves, especially if they’re struggling with something.

The Understood Team is made up of passionate writers, editors, and community moderators, many of whom have children who learn and think differently.




Jennifer Maughan
Social Worker
Tuesday & Wednesday
9208 2703



P & F News

The next P&F meeting is Tuesday the 17th of September at 7.30pm

All are welcome to attend


Wine and Cheese Night

Friday night was our Wine and Cheese night. Thank you to everyone who came and braved the horrendous weather! It turned out to be a hugely successful event and we are thrilled with the results and the money raised to buy maths and literacy resources for all St Columba’s students.

These events can not happen without the support of our school and local community. Special thanks goes to Damian Katich, Pippa Harris, Rebecca Scott and Leston DeMello who put in several hours to help put the night together. It couldn’t of been done without them.

Thanks also to Dan Bull who hosted our evening and did a fantastic job and to Nyssa Bull, Nhi Walsh, Briony Partington and Lisa Slocum’s husband, Aaron, who gave up their night to serve us all yummy wine and beer. Our school and local community donated vouchers and hampers for our very successful silent auction, thank you to Greg Bentley, Salvatore Pizzata, Ben Silverman, Ryan Smith, Pippa Harris and Emilie Pitter for their generous donations.

If you would like to order Wine from Hay Shed Hill Winery, order forms have been sent home this week to your eldest child. These wines have been generously discounted and for every case sold Hay Shed Hill will give $40 back to the school. Extra order forms are attached to this newsletter or available from the school office, so if you would like to share the order forms with friends and family please feel free to do so. Order forms must be in by the 30th of August. All wine will be delivered to the school free of charge.


Rachel Lange
P&F President

Library News

2019 CBCA Book Week 
Reading is my SECRET POWER

Dress Up Parade (Kindy-Year 6)


Book of the Year: Younger Readers
Entries in this category may be fiction, drama or poetry and should be appropriate in style and content for readers from the middle to upper primary years. Ages 7-12 years.



Honour Books

Merrison, Carl & Hustler, Hakea BLACK COCKATOO



Book of the Year: Early Childhood
Entries in this category may be fiction, drama or poetry and should be appropriate in style andcontent for children who are at pre-reading or early stages of reading. Ages 0-6 years.


Lester, Alison TRICKY’S BAD DAY

Honour Books




Picture Book of the Year
Entries in this category should be outstanding books of the Picture Book genre in which the author and illustrator achieve artistic and literary unity or, in wordless picture books, where the story, theme or concept is unified through illustrations. Ages 0-18 years (NB. Some of these books may be for mature readers). Arranged by illustrator.


Tan, Shaun CICADA

Honour Books


Speechley, Michael THE ALL NEW MUST HAVE ORANGE 430


Eve Pownall Award
Entries in this category should be books that have the prime intention of documenting factual material with consideration given to imaginative presentation, interpretation and variation of style. Ages 0-18 years.


Vass, Coral
(illus. by Dub Leffler) SORRY DAY

Honour Books

Greenwood, Mark  (illus. by Andrew McLean) THE HAPPINESS BOX: A WARTIME BOOK OF HOPE





CBCA Award for New Illustrator
This Award aims to recognise and encourage new talent in the field of Australian children’s book illustration. Ages 0-18 years.


Gray-Barnett, Daniel GRANDMA Z



A warm invitation is extended to all families to visit the library from 8:15am most mornings. (Please note, when Mrs. Cuthbert is unavailable, the library is closed.)

Kindy & Pre-Kindy families take advantage to come and read all our fabulous picture books with your little ones till 8:45am.

YES! Library open most lunch times 1:15 – 1:35 daily.




Class of the Week

Year 5 Green








If any families have childrens magazines that they no longer need, the students at lunch time would enjoy reading them.








Homework/Library Bag

Just a reminder that students require the school green ‘Homework and Library Bag’ in order to borrow from the Library. Many students will already have the bag from previous years.

The ‘Homework and Library Bags’ can be purchased from the Uniform Shop at a cost of $10.







Rita Cuthbert
Library Officer

Pastoral Care

Happy Birthday to:

Abbie Hartus 2G
Caleb High 6G
Chloe Bouteloup 1G
Girishma Berigai 3W
Lincoln Markovic PKG
Elizabeth Kennewell KG
Havarna Bova PPG
William North 2W
Audrey Lawes 2G
Olivia Pincus 5G
Taj O’Shea 4G

Families rostered to bring in the raffle prize will be notified through the newsletter and on lists outside the classrooms. New families to St Columba’s will be rostered later in the year. Pastoral Care Team

Week 6 (28/8/19)
Week 7 (4/9/19)

Kindy Green

Week 6 Alexander Khoo
Week 7 Elizabeth Kennewell

Kindy White

Week 6 Alexander Lilleyman
Week 7 Eve Hamilton

PP Green

Week 6 Sebastian Strachan
Week 7 Emma Silverman

PP White

Week 6 Luca Scagnetti
Week 7 Sofia Jaramillo Restrepo

Year 1 Green

Week 6 Chloe Smith
Week 7 Arthur Pitter

Year 1 White

Week 6 Alexis Stewart
Week 7 Lucas Giuffre

Year 2 Green

Week 6 Tayla Green
Week 7 Evan Nguyen

Year 2 White

Week 6 Oliver May
Week 7 Elizabeth Wright

Year 3 Green

Week 6 Liam Jarvis
Week 7 Ava Moretta

Year 3 White

Week 6 Natasha Juszkiewicz
Week 7 Dante Felt

Year 4 Green

Week 6 Abigail Hornby
Week 7 Taj Debono

Year 4 White

Week 6 Willow Bull
Week 7 Rory Shanahan

Year 5 Green

Week 6 Nicholas Kryachok
Week 7 Ruby Dodd

Year 5 White

Week 6 Fionn Veale
Week 7 Mathilda Meyers

Year 6 Green

Week 6 Roman Hube
Week 7 Eva Ierace

Year 6 White

Week 6 Sophia Figueiredo
Week 7 Roman Kaless

Community Notices


Mark this down in your diaries everyone fundraiser with the Bayswater City Saints Netball Club. 

Why not grab a table (of 10) and come along!!!!

 Amazing pendant up for grabs!!!!!!!!       










St Columba’s School Bayswater

32 Roberts Street, Bayswater WA 6053
PO Box 61, Bayswater WA 6933
Phone: (08) 9208 2700