A Time for Preparation, Appreciation and Compassion

Dear Parents/Caregivers and students,

This term we have witnessed college events which are in addition to the daily timetabled learning and teaching experiences. Some of these events have been our 2017 HSC High Achievers Assembly, the Year 7 Welcome BBQ, Ash Wednesday Liturgy, Caritas-Project Compassion Fundraising, Information Evenings, Swimming Carnival, Parent/Principal Chat Groups and our recent Open Evening. Each event has helped develop our great community at St John Paul II and each one has enhanced our community faith formation and educational endeavours.

The Open Evening which was held recently highlighted everything that we do here as a community with staff and students displaying our school to the wider community with genuine warmth and enthusiasm. The teaching and support staff are to be congratulated on their professionalism and dedication to the school during the event. Then we had the students assisting throughout the evening with our tour guides performing magnificently. The Open Evening saw 228 families of Year 6 students attending the Schofields Campus as they look to enrol in Year 7 2019. Additionally there were large numbers of families with students wishing to enrol in Years 8 to 11. Such healthy numbers reflect the great name the college has in the wider community for providing students and families with a comprehensive, challenging and faith filled education. The approach we take to educating our students is reflected in the adage that we are creating “a unique and dynamic learning experience”.

Our Open Evening attendance numbers should also serve to remind parents and caregivers that it is important to submit enrolment applications promptly to ensure a place at St John Paul II Catholic College in 2019. If you know of a family that wishes to enrol their son/daughter in Year 7 at the college in 2019 and they do not attend Mary Immaculate, St Joseph’s, or St John’s Primary Schools, please advise them to contact the college to obtain an enrolment information pack prior to the end of term one vacation break. Enrolments are also available for any other students who are not currently at St John Paul II Catholic College, especially Year 11 for 2019.

Onto matters of practical importance to current families it must be noted that the changeover from summer to winter uniform for Term 2 is always difficult to determine with our changing weather patterns. However, we have decided that Week 1 being the changeover period when students can choose to wear winter or summer uniform –– not a mixture of them –– depending on the weather, with the beginning of Week 2 being the time all students should be in their Winter Uniform.

To assist with your planning, our next Staff Learning - Pupil Free Day is Monday 30 April. Thus, all Year 7-12 students will return to classes for the commencement of Term 2 on Tuesday 1 May. The other Staff Learning-Pupil Free Days for this year are Friday 8 June, Monday 15 October, Thursday 20 December and Friday 21 December. Please contact the college a week before each Staff Learning-Pupil Free Day if you require supervision for your children on these days at school.

At the end of this term we say farewell to Mrs Kristine Hutchinson who has been a member of our teaching staff for the last five years. We are also farewelling Ms Rachel Aquilina on Friday, 20 April, who has been our Marketing and Communication officer for the last four years. Both of these positions will be advertised in the next week. We welcome Mr Kel Haynes to our college who has been appointed as Business Manger replacing Andrew Noney who retired at the end of last year.

As we move closer to Easter our students are continuing their Lenten practice of working for Project Compassion and each Home Room is completing a daily donation. Caritas Australia’s annual Lenten fundraising and awareness-raising appeal is an extraordinary, ongoing demonstration of the faith, love and generosity of the Catholic community and caring supporters throughout Australia to help end poverty, promote justice and uphold dignity.