Handbook

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The St Michael's Primary Parent Handbook covers all the information you and your child will need.


If you have any further questions in relation to school times, dates, policies or other general enquiries please feel free to contact St Michael’s Primary, Baulkham Hills by phone on (02) 9865 1600 during weekdays between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm.

General Information

Dear Parents & Children

St Michael’s Primary School is one of the largest systemic schools in the Diocese of Parramatta, with a population of 800 students, and over 50 teaching and ancillary staff. Established now for almost 50 years, St Michael’s has grown from a school which commenced in temporary accommodation in 1971 with 173 pupils and 12 staff to the present, well-resourced school.

St Michael’s Parish is the main drawing area for enrolment at the school. There is active participation from parents in the life of the school through involvement in the Parents and Friends Association and its subcommittees. Parents also help with reading, school banking, the Uniform shop, Stop and Drop, Canteen, Bookclub and sporting activities. All parents and other adults involved in any way with the children and their activities are required each year to complete ‘Child Protection training' via the school website before participating in school activities.

On behalf of the St Michael's Primary School community I would like to extend to you a warm welcome.

We look forward to you joining our school community.

Mrs Danuta Maka
Principal

St Michael's is a systemic school situated in the Diocese of Parramatta.

From the time of its foundation in 1971 as a Parish School, St Michael's has promoted the Christian values that prompted its establishment.

The school aims to provide a learning environment that is stimulating, appropriate and in line with current educational practices, while at the same time maintaining the best from the past.

From the time of its establishment, the school has emerged as a vibrant Catholic school catering to the diverse needs of the many children who are part of the St Michael's Parish Family. From 1971 until 1990 the school was administered by the Sisters of Mercy. The first lay Principal was appointed in 1991.

St Michael's is part of a school system that operates under the leadership and coordination of Catholic Education, Diocese of Parramatta. This operates on behalf of Bishop Vincent Long Van Nguyen.

Parramatta Diocese, established in 1986 looks after nearly 50 parishes, 54 primary schools and 21 secondary schools.

Catholic schools are seen as:

  • signs to the world of a religious presence reflecting the person and teaching of Jesus Christ as understood and expressed in the Catholic tradition
  • places where young people can experience the rich heritage of Catholic teachings, culture and tradition
  • communities of hope reflecting God's love for us and our love for each other
  • centres of learning, striving towards excellence in all areas of human growth
  • witnesses to justice and equity, and a living demonstration of a particular concern for the poor and for those of other faiths and of no faith; and agents of change taking a leadership role on moral and values issues.

Our parish priest is Fr Wim Hoekstra and our assistant priests are Fr Zvonimir Gavranovic & Fr John Byung Chan Ji. All children have opportunities to participate in regular Liturgies and Reconciliation.

St Michael's also runs school-based sacramental programs to support the efforts of the local parish and to support family-centred preparation for the Sacraments of Reconciliation, Eucharist and Confirmation.

An integrated Religious Education Program is implemented throughout the school.

The school follows the Catholic Education, Diocese of Parramatta Religious Education Program.

Meaningful and relevant lessons in Religious Education are part of the school day and Gospel values and attitudes permeate all aspects of school life.

Children have the opportunity to celebrate liturgies which reflect the liturgical seasons and the life of the school.

Absence due to Illness

If your child is away from school for any reason, a written note of explanation to your child's teacher is necessary. If your child is to be absent from school for a week or longer, please notify the school office and your child's teacher. Notes are also required for part absences (if they are absent for part of the day). These notes are kept as official records.

Taking leave during the year

Requirements for student absence and travel

  • 1-4 days absence: Parents must notify the school principal by mail or email (written).

  • 5 or more days absence: Parents must complete and submit the Application for Extended Leave form (A1) prior to commencing leave. If approved the Principal issues a Certificate of Extended Leave (C1). If the principal declines this application (i.e it is not within the best interest of the child to take leave and be absent from school), a letter notifying parents that the application has been declined would be forthcoming.

Exemption from attendance

This relates to students who wish to participate in an accredited Elite Sports Program/Elite Arts Program, Employment in the Entertainment Industry or where there are exceptional circumstances.

  • If the intended absence will be under 100 days, parents should complete and submit the Exemption from Attendance (A2) to the principal. The principal has the authority to approve up to 100 days each calendar year. If approved the principal will issue a Certificate of Approval.

  • If the intended absence will be over 100 days, parents must complete and submit the Exemption from Attendance (A2) to the principal who will make a recommendation to the Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta (CEDP) Director System Performance (DSP).

  • The DSP will then investigate the matter and will make a recommendation to the Executive Director. The Executive Director reviews the Exemption from Attendance and forwards a recommendation to the Minister of Education. If this application is approved the principal, will issue a Certificate of Approval (C2). Should this application be declined by the Minister, the principal will issue a letter of decline.

For additional information on accredited Elite Sport Program and Elite Arts program, contact the school office.

Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta has procedures and guidelines in place to achieve high standards of student attendance in collaboration with parents. Parents are required by law to ensure that children aged between 6 and 17 attend school. Schools are required to monitor and keep a register of student attendance in accordance with common codes which explain absences.

These forms are located in the Notes & Forms section of the website.

Partial absences

Written notes are also required for part absences, i.e. if absent for part of the day. All these notes are kept with the class roll as official records of attendance.

Appointments

If your child needs to be collected before the end of the school day due to an appointment, please write a note in your child's diary or send a letter addressed to the teacher.

The parent is required to collect the child from the school office and sign the partial absence slip.

Notes explaining any absences need to be signed and dated.

Accidents / sickness at school

If your child is sick or has an accident at school, the office staff or class teacher make the decision regarding parent contact.

For this reason it is vital that you keep us up-to-date with home and work contact telephone numbers.

A whole school assembly is held each week at 9.00am on Friday mornings in our school hall. At this time the school comes together in prayer and celebration. The children are given information, praise for good work and at times clarification of the school's expectations with regard to behaviour.

Parents are very welcome to attend this assembly.

The assessment of student learning is a continuous process. Students maintain Work Sample Books which provide a record of progress and achievement. These work samples are used during school conferences.

Term 1

In early Term 1, each grade provides meetings for parents/caregivers to:

  • personally meet their child's teacher
  • convey any information about their child that is relevant to their child's educational development.

At the beginning of each school year the parents/caregivers are provided with information that:

  • conveys information about the year's activities.
  • outlines the school Code of Conduct, which parents and child are required to sign.

Term 2

Parent/student/teacher conferences are held towards the end of Term 2.

While most conferences include the student in discussion it is possible to alter this arrangement.

Discussion centres on:

  • progress to date (evidence of learning from Work Sample Book).
  • issues related to the students' wellbeing and social skills (mid-year student and teacher evaluation report).

A conference timetable is communicated well in advance for parent convenience.

Term 3

Work Sample Books are brought home for parents to peruse and discuss with their child his/her achievements. Parents are also asked to write a comment.

Term 4

A comprehensive written report stating the students progress against learning outcomes is prepared by all relevant staff for distribution to parents and caregivers.

Staff are available to discuss student progress/matters of concern/welfare at any time. We ask parents to make an appointment to ensure quality time is made available. Appointments can be made through the school office.

Student of the Week Award

At the weekly assembly, a child from each class is awarded a certificate for his or her contribution during that week. 

Student of the Term Award

At the end of each term each class teacher selects a child for the 'Student of the Term' award. The student receives a certificate and a book. The Student of the Term award is awarded to a child who has satisfied some of the following criteria:

  • can work independently
  • respects the feelings of others
  • participates with enthusiasm
  • displays Christian charity while playing with peers
  • cares for the environment
  • wears the school uniform with pride
  • works to the best of his/her ability
  • works co-operatively in groups

Citizen of the Term Award

At the end of each term, each class teacher will also select a child who has been a good citizen during the term. Children receive a book which is donated by the Parents and Friends Association.

All children of Kindergarten, Year 1 and Year 2 are entitled to free bus travel to and from school.

Children in Years 3 to 6 who live more than 1.6km radius from the school also receive free travel. Children from Years 3 – 6 who are not eligible for free travel, can apply for a paid bus pass directly from the bus company.

Bus passes are issued to all eligible children on application at the School Office and must be carried at all times and produced on request. The bus company can withdraw the pass in cases of misbehaviour. If the bus pass is lost, application must be made directly to Westbus and a fee will be charged.

The bus company associated with school bus travel is Westbus (a division of ComfortDelgro Cabcharge) and they can be contacted by telephone on 9890 0000.

Music

Music is an important part of our school curriculum. St Michael’s has a specialist Music Teacher who takes each class each week. We have a school choir who assist with Liturgies and Masses. Children in Years 3 - 6 are able to audition for the school choir.

Band

Children from Years 3-6 may also learn an instrument and perform with the school band (on a parent pays basis). Instrument lessons take place during school hours.

Creative Arts

Creative Arts are an integral part of school life at St Michael's. Children are able to display their talents for dance, drama and singing in many ways at St Michael's.

School Concerts

St Michael's has held a number of whole school concerts over the last 9 years including 'Backtrack' in 2002; 'Starstruck' in 2004; 'Christmas in the Hills' in 2008, and many more.

Creative Arts Expo

Every three years the Diocese of Parramatta holds a Creative Arts Expo. St Michael's takes part with other local Catholic primary schools. Children from our school participate in a combined school choir and band, as well as the school performing an item of dance, drama and singing.

School Newsletter

The School Newsletter is sent home to parents every second Thursday by email. The Newsletter is also uploaded to the school website every second Thursday. The School Newsletter provides an important means of communicating with parents. 

Parents are asked for their email addresses when their first child commences at St Michael's. Parents are asked to inform the school office if their email address changes.

School Website

The school website is a good source of information. It contains information, photos, current and archived Newsletters and school policies.

An out of school hours centre is run within the grounds of the school. This service provides before and after school care for children from Kindergarten to Year 6. Fees and hours can be discussed with the coordinator by telephoning 0499 993 489.

St Michael’s has a staff of 54 consisting of:

Principal, Assistant Principal, 37 classroom teachers, 4 Support Services teachers, 1 Teacher Librarian, 1 Library Assistant, 1 Music teacher, 1 PDHPE teacher, 4 teacher assistants, 4 Office staff and 1 Maintenance person.

School Leadership Team

The School Leadership Team is made up of the Principal, the Assistant Principal, the Religious Education Coordinator, Assistant Religious Education Coordinator and Subject Coordinators. All members of the Leadership team play an important part in the leadership of the school.

Release from Teaching (Leadership Team)

Staff on the School Leadership Team are provided with release from classroom teaching. The amount of time given varies with the degree of responsibility, from full-time release to half a day each week. Each teacher is provided with release from face to face on a Pro-rata basis. Teachers with over 31 children in their class are also provided with additional release time. Kindergarten teachers are provided with additional teaching assistance if there are more than 27 children in the class.

Relief Teachers

When teachers are absent due to inservice, illness or family matters, qualified relief staff are employed to teach the children. Where possible the aim is to provide a degree of continuity. The relief teacher will normally follow the program of the classroom teacher.

To allow for whole staff development, the Catholic Education Office allows six pupil free days each year. The first day of each year is one of the allocated days. The other days occur throughout the year. On these days the school staff work together on a selected focus related to Spiritual Enrichment, Curriculum, Professional or Personal Development.

Children are not required to come to school on these days. 

Dates are advised well in advance in the School Calendar and Newsletters.

Morning tea: 11.00am - 11.30am

Lunch break: 1.00pm - 1.40pm

Crunch and Sip break

St Michael's has a 'Crunch and Sip' break at 10.00am each day. The children eat a small piece of fruit or vegetable and have a drink of water. Parents are asked to provide a small quantity of fruit or vegetable and a bottle of water (no glass) each day for their children. This is to encourage children to eat fruit and vegetables and drink water. Research has shown that the children are healthier and perform better when eating fruit and vegetables regularly and drinking water.

Kindergarten children are introduced to Crunch and Sip over the first few weeks of school after the children have settled into their classes.

Parents are welcomed in the school and are encouraged to take an active interest in their child's education.

Parents are invited to help in classrooms with reading, maths and arts and craft activities. We also encourage parents to help in our school library to cover books and volunteer for Stop and Drop, Canteen and Student banking.

All parent volunteers must complete the Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta's Child protection training module and Child Protection Undertaking requirements.  The link is on our website.

Canteen

The Canteen is open every day. It is run by an outside provider, Mel's Tasty Bites.

School Banking

Banking is conducted at the school each Tuesday. Banking is computerised and its function is administered by parents. The school is paid for performing this service and monies raised go into P&F funds. Early in the school year Kindergarten children are sent home a school banking package.
A bank account can be opened at any time by asking for an application package at the school office.

Parents and Friends Association

The St Michael's P&F meets once a term. The meetings are usually held at 7.30 pm in the school hall. Times and dates, as well as the agendas are advertised in the school Newsletter. There are regular social and fundraising activities throughout the year. Everyone is welcome to come along.

The Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta provides advice and recommendations on educational and administrative policies and priorities, and monitors policy implementation. These provide the framework within which we operate.

St Michael's Primary also has a number of school-based policies and procedures that govern various aspects of our school life. The system and school based policies can all be found on the 'Policies and Procedures' page of our website under the 'About Us' section.

These include:

  • Academic Assessment
    The school assesses what the children learn in order to determine the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values that have been acquired by the learner.

  • Asthma Management Plan
    Managing the awareness of and understanding amongst school personnel of the symptoms and triggers of students and most importantly the management of a student's asthma in the school environment.

  • Back Path
    At St Michael’s School we believe that all children should be provided with a safe environment and when being collected from school, children should be collected by a person authorised to do so. Our aim is to establish practices that provide children with a safe environment prior to parent pick-up, following dismissal in the afternoon and to assist parents with an orderly collection of their children.

  • Canteen
    The canteen at St Michael’s school was established by parents and supported by the school to provide an alternative source of nutrition to the students.

  • Child Protection
    St Michael’s Primary school promotes the diocesan policy on Child Protection and the relevant state/federal legislation.

  • Children with Medical Conditions
    The policy reflects the importance that the staff place on ensuring that they are cognisant of the needs of children in their care and that the school policy provides them with the knowledge required for adequately providing duty of care.

  • Collection of Children Before Dismissal
    Parents who enrol their children at St Michael’s school do so with full knowledge that the school day concludes at 3.10 pm following dismissal.

  • Communication
    This policy aims to provide channels in which issues of significance to the school community can be discussed.

  • Communication of arrangements for going home in the afternoon
    At St Michael’s Primary School we believe that all children should be provided with a safe environment and have clear communication on their going home arrangements. It is the responsibility of parents to advise their children on their going home arrangements prior to attending school each day. Our aim is to establish practices which give a child certainty regarding their going home arrangements to help minimise the stress and confusion for the child.

  • Complaints and Grievances
    From time to time concerns may arise between different groups within the school community. At St Michael’s we aim to attempt resolution as soon as any concerns arise.

  • Computers in the Classroom
    In order to promote effective use of and respect for the computers in our classrooms, the following guidelines are to be observed in all classrooms.

  • Drugs
    All children have the right to attend a school that is free of illegal substances.

  • Excursions
    A school excursion is a learning experience which takes place either at school or outside the school with the approval of the principal and the consent of the parents.

  • Extreme Weather
    As the staff at St Michael’s Primary School we understand the importance of ensuring the Safety of our community at all times irrespective of climatic conditions.

  • School Fence
    A fence around the perimeter of St Michael’s school has been provided by Catholic Education, Parramatta Diocese to ensure that all students and staff are provided with an environment that is safe.

  • Fire Safety
    St Michael’s staff operates under the premise that as well as providing quality education to its students, their safety is of equal importance hence the development of a policy relating to Fire Safety and its applicability in a school setting.

  • First Aid and Illness
    The policy provides guidelines for the care of the children when injured or sick and recognises the level of training of the school First Aid staff.

  • Fruit and Water
    As part of the ongoing relationship between home and school, St Michael’s staff supports the concept of a fruit, vegetable and water break.

  • Homework
    Our policy on homework for student at St Michael's.

  • Late Arrival of Students
    As part of the ongoing relationship between home and school, St Michael’s staff believes that it is a parental responsibility to ensure that children arrive at school at the correct time.

  • Medication - Non Prescription
    Our policy concerning requests that a non-prescription drug be administered.

  • Medication - Prescription
    The schools’ responsibility regarding the supervision of children who take prescribed medication.

  • Mobile Phones
    The School's policy regarding the inappropriate use of mobile phones by children.

  • Parent Pick up Area
    At St Michael’s School we believe that all children should be provided with a safe environment and when being collected from school, children should be collected by a person authorised to do so. Our aim is to establish practices that provide children with a safe environment prior to parent pick-up, following dismissal in the afternoon and to assist parents with an orderly collection of their children.

  • Parish Car Park
    At St Michael's Primary School we believe that all children should be provided with an environment that is safe. It is a privilege for St Michael’s to use the Parish carpark. This privilege is to be respected by all who use the carpark so that St Michael’s Primary School can continue to use the carpark. Our aim is to ensure the health and safety of all persons accessing the Parish carpark at all times.

  • Bullying
    St Michael’s does not tolerate bullying in any form, therefore all members of the school community are committed to ensuring that a safe and caring environment is evident at all times. The St Michael’s community supports the premise that self worth and self esteem flourish where individuals feel safe and happy.

  • Privacy Amendment Act
    The sensitive information we hold on children, including details of their residence, contact phone, fax and e-mail numbers, behaviour within school, reports on academic attainment, health information and family situations is not open to public scrutiny and is available only to those staff who are delegated by the school authority. Also see the Diocesan Privacy Policy.

  • Provision of Support for Children in NSW Rep Teams
    We believe that children who progress from St Michael’s school through to represent Mackillop at a PSSA State Tournament and are then selected in the NSW State team could receive some assistance from the Parents and Friends Association.

  • Racism
    St Michael’s Primary, Baulkham Hills rejects all forms of racism. It is committed to the elimination of racial discrimination – including direct and indirect racism, racial vilification and harassment – in its organisation, structures and culture, in its curriculum, and in the learning and working environments for which it is responsible.

  • Religious Education
    Religious Education is at the heart of the Catholic School. Principal, teacher and student work in partnership with parent and pastor to form the school faith community at St Michael’s.

  • Road Safety
    It is important that all children are aware of the strategies that ensure that they are safe when they traverse roads. Hence St Michael’s has formulated a Road Safety Policy.

  • School Website
    The St Michael's website provides a window through which St Michael’s school and its operation can be viewed.

  • Slow and Go
    Practices that provide children with a safe environment prior to parent pick-up following dismissal in the afternoon and to assist parents with an orderly collection of their children.

  • Social Skills
    A policy designed to introduce and enforce basic social skills.

  • Stop and Drop
    St Michael's aims to provide a service that will assist with the free flow of traffic as well as providing a safe set down area for children before school.

  • Year 6 Student Leadership Policy & Procedures
    The purpose of this policy is to clarify the formal leadership roles available to students at St Michael’s Primary School by explaining the selection process, the expectations of the school of any student in a leadership position, how to maintain leadership status and what legacy each leader is expected to leave for those that follow them.

  • Supervision of Children
    Teaching staff supervise children as part of their role when they are in the classroom or on the playground from 8.20am until 3.40pm.

  • Uniform
    Guidelines on what is appropriate to wear to school.

  • Well Being Policy
    At St Michael’s, we focus on positively encouraging and rewarding appropriate behaviour. We believe that it is important for children to develop responsibility for their own actions and to accept the consequences that occur because of that behaviour. We focus on developing the children’s social skills and encourage them to become cooperative, resilient members of the community.

If you require any further information concerning polices or procedures St Michael’s Primary Baulkham Hills welcomes your contact the school by phone on 9865 1600 between 8:30am and 3:30pm (on school days).

Arrival

There is limited parking available in the Parish carpark. If you do choose to park in the Parish carpark, please follow the traffic around the traffic island and then park, do not turn across 'Stop and Drop' traffic.

Please do not park in the designated Parish spaces, they are for Church visitors only.

Alternately there is street parking. Please take note of parking restrictions in Chapel Lane. The school operates a ‘Stop and Drop’ system in the mornings from 8:15am in the Parish car park.

Families who arrive late at school (after the 8.50 am bell) must go to the office first. Parents must sign their children in and children must collect a ‘late card' before going to class. This is for the safety of the children.

The main school gate (opposite the pedestrian crossing in Chapel Lane) remains open all day from 8.00 am until 3.40 pm. Please use this gate if you visit the school during the day. The gates leading from the car park and the gate at the end of the back path are opened at 8.15am.  The large gates at the bottom of the carpark remain open for OOSH families to enter and leave.

Teachers will be on playground duty in the school from 8.20 am. Children should not be dropped at school before this time. The responsibility before 8.20 am lies with the parents. The school does not accept responsibility for children prior to 8.20 am.

All children wait in the undercover area on the top playground until the teachers come on duty at 8.20 am.

Parking in the mornings

There is limited parking available in the Parish carpark. If you do choose to park in the Parish carpark, please follow the traffic around the traffic island and then park, do not turn across 'Stop and Drop' traffic. Please do not park in the designated Parish spaces, they are for Church visitors only. Alternately there is street parking. Please take note of the parking restrictions in Chapel Lane. The school operates a 'Stop and Drop' system in the mornings from 8.15 am through the parish car park.

A ‘Stop and Drop’ system operates in the mornings for the safe 'drop off' of your children at school. ‘Stop and Drop’ commences at 8.15 am and is organised and run by parents.

Cars enter the car park from Chapel Lane. Please queue down Chapel Lane alongside the school.

Do not turn from the other side of the road into the carpark (there is no right turn from Chapel Lane into the car park after 8.15 am).

Two parents wait at the walkway to the school within the car park and open doors as the car stops. Children need to be ready to alight with their school bags and hats. Cars then proceed through the car park around the traffic island and out onto Chapel Lane.

Dismissal

A teacher walks the ‘back path’ children down to the back gate following dismissal at 3.10pm. The gate is then locked and the teacher returns to assist with supervision at ‘Slow and Go’.

It is expected that all parents support the school’s policy regarding the collection of students.

A ‘Slow and Go’ system operates in the afternoons for the safe and easy pickup of children.

Parents are required to have a family number. The family number is provided by the school at the beginning of the school year.

A note is sent home to new families explaining the ‘Slow and Go’ system, with a tear off slip to apply for a family number. The family number needs to be displayed on the left side of the front window of the car.

Cars enter the parish car park beside the school (next to the units) from 3.20 pm, proceed down to the undercover area and pull up in the designated coloured parking spaces. The teacher calls out the car number and colour over the microphone. Children wait in the undercover area and must know their family number. Children wait for their number to be called, proceed to the colour, wait for the car to stop, open the door and enter. Cars then wait and proceed in a line out the gates and through the school car park..

‘Slow and Go’ finishes at 3:40pm.

Any children not collected will wait at the office for collection. A phone call is expected to explain the delay.

School finishes at 3.10 pm.

Parent Pick Up Area

If you are collecting your children in person, please collect them from the top playground following the dismissal bell. In some circumstances (if it is raining or extremely hot), an announcement is made and dismissal is from classrooms.

Children who are not collected at dismissal time wait on the top playground Undercover area for their parents with the children waiting for 'Slow and Go'.

Please do not expect your children to meet you at your car. You must walk into the school grounds to collect your child/children.

Children who catch a bus are supervised on the top playground until their bus arrives.

'Slow and Go'

Children who are being collected via 'Slow and Go' wait on the top playground.

Back Path walkers

A teacher walks the 'back path' children down to the back gate following dismissal at 3.10 pm. Any child not collected at the back gate are walked back with the teacher to the 'Slow and Go' area after the gate has been locked.  

It is expected that all parents will support the school's policy regarding the collection of students.

Kindergarten Information

Starting School is an exciting event for the children. Even though they are eager to begin, school means some big changes in your child’s life.

For example:

  • first separation from home and family
  • first steps to independence
  • new feelings
  • new friends
  • new experiences

For children and parents the first day of school is a big event. Letting go can be hard, but don’t let your doubts or nervousness dampen your child’s enthusiasm. If you have a positive attitude and look forward to the first day of school, your child will probably do the same.

It’s natural for children to experience some fears about school (as well as excitement). Questions that they might ask include:

  • Who is going to help me?
  • Will I miss home?
  • Will the other children like me?
  • Will the teachers like me?
  • What happens when I need to go to the toilet?
  • Who is going to meet me after school?

Discuss any fears about school before the first day. Be positive and reassuring - say that everything will be all right. Try to make your child happy and confident about entering the school environment.

We care about you and your child’s feelings and hope to make the first day of school as happy as possible.

The Kindergarten Teachers

Kindergarten children will begin school for a shorter period of time on their first day of school.

It would be appreciated if once you see your child settled you leave the classroom as soon as possible. Please do not remain in doorways as this is very unsettling for the children and teachers. If your child is distressed please try not to worry as he or she will settle within a very short time, once you leave. Please trust us as we have had a great deal of experience with children.

From the first full day onwards, children will be at school from 8.45 am - 3.10 pm and will be working in different class groups. A letter will be sent home in January advising parents of their child’s class and teacher.

School Hours

The school day commences at 8.45 am and concludes at 3.10 pm.

From the first full day and onwards:-

8.45 am

  • Morning Bell
  • Children line up in undercover area on the top playground

3.10 pm

  • School finishes
  • Children are escorted by their teacher to the top playground
  • Parents can meet children on the top playground
  • If parents are not present at dismissal time, children remain on the top playground to wait for parent collection or to go home via ‘Slow and Go’
  • Children are not allowed to meet parents in the carpark or walk through the carpark unescorted or walk home.

The children will need the following items. They should to be sent to school in a plastic bag clearly marked with child’s full name

  • Library/Excursion/Swim bag (purchased from Oz Fashions, labelled with child’s name)
  • St Michael’s note pouch (purchased from Oz Fashions, labelled with child’s name)
  • A painting smock (preferably not plastic) labelled with child’s name.
  • A raincoat to be kept in school bag at all times.
  • 1 large box of tissues.
  • 4 packets of wet wipes.

Other requirements:

  • School Bag - as all the bags are very similar it is important that the children can identify their bag easily eg: bright ribbon, special key ring.
  • Lunch box/drink bottle (clearly labelled with child’s name). Your child must be able to open these.
  • Spare underpants and socks in a plastic bag (ALL YEAR).
  • School Hat (clearly labelled with child’s name).
  • The school uniform, especially jackets and hats should have the name of the child clearly marked on the inside tag.

Experts say that if the answer to nearly all these questions is 'YES' your child should fit into infants school “very well indeed” and should make rapid progress with his/her reading fairly soon after he/she starts.

  • Is he/she normally happy?
  • Can he/she perform normal daily routine tasks without an adult being present, e.g. Doing up shoelaces?
  • Can he/she accept criticism without getting upset?
  • Does he/she mix well with other children?
  • Can he/she join in a conversation without being too “pushy”?
  • Does he/she share most of his/her things and take his/her turn when required?
  • Is he/she persistent - e.g. Does he/she finish what he/she starts?
  • Can he/she work with others without distraction?
  • Can he/she hold a book firmly and turn the pages by himself/herself?
  • Can he/she use scissors well i.e. Accurately?
  • Does he/she exhibit the beginnings of organisation and method in the way he/she tackles his/her work?
  • Can he/she remember simple instructions?
  • Can he/she re-tell a simple story in the order it was told?
  • Can he/she express simple ideas clearly?
  • Has he/she finished with baby talk?
  • Does he/she pronounce words clearly?
  • Is he/she well acquainted with his/her immediate environment and can he/she talk about it?
  • Has he/she a fairly wide vocabulary?
  • Is his/her visual discrimination good (i.e. Can he/she, for example, spot one letter difference between words)?
  • Has he/she good auditory discrimination (i.e. Can he/she distinguish between words that sound nearly the same)?
  • Can he/she make up rhymes to simple words?
  • Does he/she know his/her left hand from his/her right? Does he/she know that print starts on the left hand side and progresses to the right?
  • Can he/she use his/her imagination to tell the story in a picture and to extract simple inferences?
  • Does he/she enjoy looking at books? Does he/she show real interest in the printed word?
  • Can he/she hold a pencil correctly and draw in bold, confident lines? Can he/she copy a circle, a square, a cross and a rectangle?
  • Can he/she model things with clay and plasticene?

Preparing your child for school

The following activities are suggestions to help prepare your child for school:

  • writing their first name with a capital letter at the beginning, eg. Timothy, Stephanie.
  • scribbling/drawing with pencils/crayons
  • gluing
  • using scissors
  • colouring
  • tracing
  • tearing or cutting paper/magazines
  • play dough modelling
  • sand play
  • threading beads
  • throwing/catching balls

Helpful Hints

  • Mark all items clearly - not just initials etc on clothing.
  • Before school starts show your child that learning is fun by:
    • arranging household items - putting things away
    • cooking snacks
    • playing games with words
    • learning their last name, address, phone number
    • reading books together
    • sticking to a routine - getting enough sleep
    • dressing themselves - make it a game and use an egg-timer to indicate the time it takes.
  • It would be good if your child is able to do the following:
    • put on/take off school shoes.
    • tie shoelaces
    • put on/take off outer garments (school jacket)
    • do up buttons/zippers
    • tuck in shirt
    • open and close school bag
    • open and close lunch box/drink bottle
    • unwrap gladwrap from lunch
  • Children should be able to take themselves to the toilet unassisted and they should be able to flush the toilet and wash their hands
  • Give your child sufficient food and drink (not too much)
  • Let them know which is the little lunch and which is the big lunch
  • Please pack the little lunch in a paper bag and the big lunch in a separate container.

Frequently Asked Questions

To find out how your child is progressing your first point of contact is the classroom teacher. If a number of teachers are involved with your child, the classroom teachers will ensure that they have some input.

The school curriculum is based on the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) requirements on what should be taught in all primary schools irrespective of whether they are government, systemic or independent. The Religious Education Curriculum for schools is set by the Diocese of Parramatta. It is used in all schools in the Parramatta Diocese. Teachers in a particular grade plan the units of work that will be taught each term. The school has a whole school program of work.

Relief teachers usually work in a number of schools and quite often they do not know where they will be working until a few hours before school begins. We have a number of regular relief teachers and we try to utilise their talents to replace teachers on either Long Service Leave or extended periods of Sick Leave. It is often extremely difficult to find replacement staff.

The school operates during school hours to provide tuition for the students who are enrolled. The school does not have the right to operate a separate business after school hours.

The size of the class is dependent on the number of children applying for a place in a particular year who satisfy the enrolment criteria. No class has more than 33 children.

School fees are set by the Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta (CEDP). The school collects the fees and then remits them in their entirety to CEDP. CEDP provides funds four times each year.

There is an established formula for funding for primary and secondary schools and for cleaning costs. The funds we receive from CEDP are used to pay our ongoing costs such as water, electricity, garbage collection, photocopier hire, and minor maintenance. We charge a maintenance fee to upgrade various school resources.

The building levy is set by Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta. Funds collected by schools are used for new buildings and refurbishment.

At St Michael's Primary School, Baulkham Hills, the dignity of each individual is valued and the rights and beliefs of all members of the community are respected. St Michael's follows the Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta Complaint Handling Policy and Procedures which is available from the school office and on the school website.

However, from time to time concerns may arise between different groups within the school community.  At St Michael’s we aim to attempt resolution as soon as any concerns arise.

Parents

Complaints or grievances pertaining to classroom issues or that relate to other children are to be dealt with by school personnel. It is not appropriate for parents to approach other children or other parents while on school premises to resolve issues. The recommended procedure to be followed by parents is:

  • The first point of contact is the child’s class teacher. An appointment with the teacher should be made via the school office or directly with the teacher
  • If parents are not satisfied with the solutions offered or believe they have not been given a fair hearing, they are encouraged to make an appointment with either the Principal or Assistant Principal, to discuss the issue further. 
  • Parents are reminded that there are always two sides to every story and while it is important to listen to their own child, it is also just as important not to draw conclusions or make accusations until all the facts are known.
  • Parents may also contact Catholic Education, Diocese of Parramatta for further discussion.
  • All parties should aim to work towards a mutually agreeable solution to the grievance.

Students

The recommended procedure for students who have complaints or grievances is:

  • If and when issues arise in the classroom, students are encouraged to speak to the class teacher in order to seek assistance in finding a resolution.
  • Students encountering problems on the playground are asked to talk to the staff member on duty, who will then refer it to the class teacher or one of the school’s Leadership team if necessary.
  • Students may also speak to any other staff member regarding any issues.

Uniform

Uniforms are supplied by Oz Fashions.

To order the school uniform you can download the order from the 'Uniform' page of the school’s website and email it to elle@ozfashions.com.au.

Copies of the uniform order form are also available in the school office and Oz Fashions are on site during the Kindergarten Orientation Days.

To make an order please fill in what you require, as well as your child’s name, class (if known) or year group, and your payment details. Please be sure to provide your name and contact number in case Oz Fashions need to get in touch with you regarding your order.

Deliveries are made to the school every Tuesday and Friday mornings, except school holidays and public holidays (although  orders can still be placed during holidays).

Any queries regarding the uniform, please contact Oz Fashions – Elle on 0421 216 414

Other required uniform items include:

  • The school bag with the school logo (compulsory and only available from Oz Fashions)
  • The homework bag is for all children from Kindergarten to Year 6
  • The school hat (available for purchase at the school office)

The school policy is: No Hat - Sit in the Shade near the office and this is strictly enforced.  

Once a term, the P&F will have a sale of second hand uniforms that have been donated by parents.

At St Michael's we foster in students a strong sense of community and pride.

This is why we require all students to wear their full uniform, especially when representing the school at sport or for any other purpose. We ask parents to ensure that they are familiar with our school uniform guidelines.

More information in regards to the uniform requirements, school hats, backpacks and uniforms for kindergarten students can be located on the 'Uniform' page of our website under the 'Enrolment' section.