Weekly Newsletter

Thursday 13th December 2018

Dear Parents,


Christmas Carols

Grades combined to sing Christmas carols on Monday afternoon. The eight acts were performed on a stage borrowed from Essendon Keilor College under the basketball roof. We have captured each of the acts and uploaded these to the school web site. You can view each at by visiting: http://www.avondaleps.vic.edu.au/page/44/Christmas-Carols-2018 or selecting the Christmas Carols 2018 from the News and Events drop-down menu of the school’s splash page.


Help for parents to keep children safe online

During the school holidays, children will have increased opportunities to access the web. Internetmatters.org is a free UK web site dedicated to assisting parents manage their child’s internet activities.

Children use the internet in different ways depending on their age and so they have developed checklists for parents that give you top tips on how to help your child stay safe. A copy of a checklist for parents of 11 – 13 year old children is attached.

Link: https://www.internetmatters.org/advice/esafety-leaflets-resources/


Staff changes at Avondale for 2019

Farewell to Dani McLaren (Grade 3/4A) who is moving to the Shepparton area and will teach at ZZZ Primary School next year. We also say farewell to Jessica Todio (Prep C) who will become a mother in March. I wish to acknowledge the contribution made by both teachers and wish them a great 2019.

Welcome back Kerry Gribbin who will teach in Grade 2. Laura Farrell also returns to teach Art on Monday and Tuesday. We welcome new staff members Kate Nikolaou (Prep), Sarah Carroll (1), and Sarah Chaouk (3/4) who will start here in January. Billie Jean Fitcher and Jude McGrath have been selected to continue teaching at Avondale Primary.


2019 grade and specialist teachers

Prep                 Ms. Oliveri, Ms. Lo Grasso, Ms. Nikolaou, Ms Watson

One                  Ms. Ferraro, Ms. Collins, Ms. Glanfield/Ms. Carroll

One/Two          Ms. Siebert     

Two                  Ms. Roach, Ms. Gribbin

Three / Four     Ms. Chaouk, Ms. Fitcher, Ms. Handley, Ms. Gerace

Four / Five        Ms. Needham

Five / Six           Mr. Lumby, Mr. Barkell, Ms. McGrath, Ms. Heywood/Ms Guthrie

Arts                  Ms Farrell & Ms. Portelli, Italian Mr. Boffa, Phys Ed Mr. Cleary.


Last school day 2018

Thursday 20 December is the final day for students this year. There will be a 1 pm assembly for a 1:15 dismissal on the basketball court. 2019 student captains announced and Year 6 students will be farewelled in turn. Parents are able to take students home following assembly; aftercare will be open from1:15 pm.


Year 3/4 students construct carnival rides using STEM principles

You can view a display of constructions made by students in the second corridor. Students have applied the principles they learnt about inclined planes and spirals to make a gravity powered ride. You can place a marble at the top of the circuit and see the fantastic journey it takes to the bottom.

I congratulate students on their imaginative constructions and I’m very pleased to see materials recycled for good use. Well done all.


Avondale Heights Football Club seeks new players

The footy club is looking for players to play in its senior and junior sides. More details are available on its web-site http://www.ahfc.org.au/CONTACT.aspx.  You can contact the club manager if you or your friends are interested on 0419 877 677.

Have a great week.

Paul Mulroyan

Thursday 6th December 2018

Dear Parents,


Enrolments soar at Avondale Primary School

As the following graph shows, the school has had a steep increase in student enrolments recently. This is happening in spite of a zoning restriction enacted by the department that limits new enrolments to students for whom Avondale is their closest government primary school.


School structure for 2019.

The class structure for next year has been influenced by the number of students in each year level, the number of girls and boys and the cultural background of students.

The names of the classes does not indicate academic level, it is only a way of identifying each class, i.e. Prep A does NOT mean that students in this class are better than Prep B, C or D. The structure is:

Preps:                          Prep A, Prep B, Prep C and Prep D

One / Two                    1A, 1B, 1C, 1/2A, 2A and 2B

Three / Four                 3/4A, 3/4B, 3/4C and 3/4D

Senior classes:              4/5A, 5/6A, 5/6B, 5/6C and 5/6D

Specialist classes:          Art, LOTE (Italian) and Physical Education.

Please note that library and music classes will be taken by class teachers as part of their weekly program.


Does the office have your current email address?

This year the school will distribute student reports as a PDF file (Portable Document Format) attached to an email on Friday 14th December. The report layout is very similar to previous years where student progress is indicated in graphical form against achievement indicators. Teacher comments accompany the graphs providing an insight into your child’s effort and attitude.


2019 School Fees

The Essential Learning Student Consumables are $260 per student. This includes student book packs, bulk classroom supplies, software used in class e.g. Mathletics, Sunshine Online, specialist supplies for Art, Italian and PE. There is a voluntary contribution of $20 per family for grounds maintenance.

Thank you School Council and subcommittee members

I would like to thank the following school council members who have performed their governance duties very well this year. President Isabelle Sawtell, Vice-president Andrew Barker, Treasurer Lance Ferguson, parent members: Ajay Bhargava, Joe Kersh, Morna Ross, Carla Soul, Karena Wojcicki and community member Tony Baldwin. Jenna Heywood and Joe Scarfo are the staff representatives who contributed thoughtfully to council meetings. I also thank parents who assisted on the canteen, education, facilities, finance and fundraising sub-committees; your collective efforts have seen many improvements in 2018, these will be noted in next week’s newsletter.


I hope you have a great week.


Paul Mulroyan

Thursday 29th November 2018

Dear Parents,


The end of the 2018 school year is only three weeks away. I have been reading student reports and I’m pleased to see our students have made significant progress in their studies. As mentioned previously, this year the semester two reports will be emailed to parents. I suggest that you save the PDF file to a memory stick or portable drive for future reference.


Swimming Program

The swimming program finishes tomorrow. Several parents have commented on their child’s growing level of confidence and swimming proficiency. I wish to thank the staff of Maribyrnong Aquatic Centre, our staff and parents who assisted students during the program.


Fundraising committee news

Student Disco There are many excited students looking forward to Friday’s disco in the BER. The junior disco, Prep to Year 2, runs from 4:30 to 6 pm.

The disco for students in grades 3 - 6 runs from 7 pm to 9 pm. Students should arrive within 10 minutes of the disco starting and enter the BER, no yard supervision is available. Parents are expected to collect their child from the disco at the finishing time.


Christmas raffle donations. Many thanks to families who have donated prizes to the Christmas raffle. First prize is a wheelbarrow full of gifts, there will be other prizes, namely baskets full of amazing donations. Books of 10 tickets will be sent home with the eldest child today. Tickets are $2 each. All tickets must be returned by Friday 14th December. The raffle will be drawn 9am, Monday 17th December.


Donation received from Sam Carbone of Nelson Alexander Real Estate

I wish to thank Sam Carbone, Sophie Clemente and Nelson Alexander Real Estate for their continuing support of Avondale Primary School. Recently Sam a former student, donated a set of footy jumpers to the school.  During the brief ceremony, Sam spoke about his time at this school and showed students a medal he won when his footy team were grand final winners for Avondale Primary in interschool sport.


Yard supervision before and after school

A teacher is assigned to yard duty from 8:40 to 8:50 and from 3:15 to 3:30 daily. This information is published on the back page of our weekly newsletter. I ask that parents consider this information when deciding when to bring children to school.  If arriving earlier than the yard duty times, parents are welcome to wait until the yard is supervised.


Recommendation for a student to repeat a grade

Occasionally a class teacher may contact a parent to discuss concerns about promoting a student to the next grade level. The factors considered are: age, student achievement and social-emotional development. This is an important decision and an invitation is given to parents to discuss the matter fully with the class teacher and a senior staff member. Usually, the group will list reasons for and against the decision and give a weighting to each factor. In the end it is the parents’ choice that determines the decision. After the decision is made, an agreement form will be signed and filed at the school.


Have a great week.

Paul Mulroyan

Thursday 22nd November 2018

Dear Parents,


Kinder- Prep transition program

Our Prep teachers hosted kindergarten children in their grades today, this was the second one hour transition session for our new students. The children experienced mat time, listening to a story about farm animals, singing nursery rhymes and playing with toy farm animals. I thank our prep teachers for assisting children to become familiar and happy in the classroom.


Election Day barbecue

Many thanks to our fundraising committee and parents who have volunteered to staff the barbecue on Saturday during the election. The barbecue will start around 7am and continue to 3pm. The menu is:

  • Bacon and egg roll - $7 (morning only)
  • Sausage in bread - $2.50 (all day) Sausage with onion $3.00 (all day)
  • Hamburger - $5.00 (lunch time only) Veggie burger - $5.00 (lunch time only)
  • Soft Drinks - $1.50


Student positions of responsibility

Attached to today’s newsletter is a flyer that explains student leader positions at our school and the selection process. These positions are by the current Year 6 students. The process will start soon for the selection of 2019 student leaders.


Using the school crossing

I am dismayed to hear reports that parents are crossing Clarendon Street near the library carpark. This is not only dangerous but also sets a poor example to young students. I ask all parents to be aware that young children are watching and demonstrate responsible behaviour around our school.


Smoking by school

School Council discussed parent concern regarding smoking near the school gates. The council and I wish to remind parents of the government’s legislation: From 13 April 2015, smoking is banned within four metres of an entrance to all primary and secondary schools in Victoria, and within the school grounds, under an amendment to the Tobacco Act 1987. A similar ban applying to the entrances and grounds of Victorian childcare centres and kindergartens is also in place.


Avondale Primary website can be viewed in other languages

Did you know that this school’s website can be read in over 100 different languages? To read the website in another language simply go to the website (http://www.avondaleps.vic.edu.au/) scroll down to TRANSLATOR (under the Quick Events on the right) and select your preferred language from the drop-down list.


Bullying Prevention Action Team

I heartily congratulate Ms Heywood and Ms Guthrie on their continuing, proactive approach to preventing bullying among students. They have lead a student representative team who have regular meetings to talk about ways that we can promote friendship, getting along and prevent bullying.

The action team comprises two student representatives from each class. Students discuss junior and senior issues. The action team has developed two acronyms to promote friendship and identify steps students can take if they are not being treated in a friendly way

Avondale students are: Friendly Accepting Inclusive Respectful

Steps students can take: Say stop Tell an adult Offer help Protect others


I hope you have a great week.

Paul Mulroyan

Thursday 15th November 2018

Dear Parents,

Semester two reports
We are mid-way through the final term and teachers are assessing student growth in literacy, numeracy, art, PE, Italian and thematic studies. The semester two reports will be distributed via email, as a PDF file, on Friday 14th December.
Parents who would like a printed copy of the report can request this at the office. I also ask non-custodial parents who would like a copy of the report to confirm this with office staff and ensure that the school has your current email address.

Athletics carnival a great success
Congratulations to Green House athlete who blitz the other houses in a very strong performance last Friday. I also congratulate John Cleary on his organisation of the day. Thank you to staff and parents who assisted with activities and supported students by cheering them during the events.
This year the Aberfeldie track was not available and we fortunate enough to secure the Keilor Park track. Many parents commented positively about this facility; we will consider using this in future.
Students enjoyed the day and the opportunity to try their best in a range of athletic activities.

Grade 1/2 Special Effects movie
During the recent excursion to ACMI (Australian Centre for the Moving Image) students in Grades 1/2 A, C and D made a movie using special effects with the green screen technology. Parents of students in these grades are invited to view the movies in the BER on Friday, following the morning assembly. It is expected to take 20 minutes for the three movies.

Swimming Program starts next week
The annual 10 day swimming program has been fully subscribed and starts on Monday 19 November. Parents are welcome at the pool during the lessons and can take their own children home afterwards.

Avondale Community Garden - Open Day
The next open day is on Sunday 25th of November from 10am to 3pm. This time, there will be live music by the band ‘Times like These’. Children will make a little paper pot and plant a seed into it ready to take home, when it sprouts pot and all can be planted in the garden. Morning and afternoon tea available as well as a barbecue lunch. More information about this day full of activities can be found at: https://avondaleheightscg.weebly.com/open-day-25-november-2018.html.

As we enter a period of increased UV radiation over the warmer months, measures need to be strengthened to ensure children have reduced exposure to these damaging sunrays. For this reason the school has a ‘no hat, no play’ policy. Students are also encouraged by their class teachers to apply sunscreen before recess to exposed arms, legs neck and face.
Every classroom has a container of Coles generic sunscreen. If your child is sensitive to this brand or you prefer your child to use another product, please include your preferred product in their school bag.

Safety around the school
There was a near miss on the school crossing yesterday when a parent and pre-school child were narrowly missed by a passing motorist. Nick, our crossing guard had his sign displayed in the middle of the crossing. To the alarm of those present, the driver was distracted while engaged with her mobile phone. I ask all parents to take care when travelling near the school and ask parents of older students to consider collecting your children at 3:25 when most traffic is cleared.
Several parents have contacted Moonee Valley Council asking for 20 k.p.h. speed reduction humps to be installed on Clarendon Street near the school.

I hope you have a great week.

Paul Mulroyan

Thursday 8th November 2018

Dear Parents,


Campers learnt much on the Canberra Camp.

Many thanks to Dean Barkell, Bettina Handley, Jenna Heywood, Kendall Lumby and Ros Blake for taking a week from their private lives to accompany 70, Year Five and Six students to Canberra. This is a fantastic way for our students to earn about governance in Australia and allowing students to actually experience the places which they have studied in class. Students visited many Canberra institutions and also had a passing encounter with the Governor-General of Australia, General Sir John Cosgrove. I am pleased to report that every place visited, the staff commented very favourably on the behaviour of our group.


Grade 1/2s visit ACME

Ms Ferraro reports: The three grades was split into two groups. One group created their fairy-tale movie using green screen technology. Everyone had a turn at both acting and working behind the scenes. Meanwhile, the other group had a look in Screen Worlds - where there’s an exhibition that shows how technology has developed over the years.

In Screen Worlds there were opportunities for children to try alternate reality glasses and see themselves on screens in various ways. Then the groups swapped activities. Towards the end we had a screening where we watched the movie and heard the oohs and aahs of children seeing themselves in a fairy-tale land. It was an educational experience that incorporated our theme of fairy tales, performing arts and technology into one amazing day. 


Athletics Carnival at Keilor Park Track tomorrow

The annual house sports day is an annual event where students compete in their house teams. Every student is expected to attend and compete in a series of athletics events. All teachers will be involved in running the sports day at Keilor park. A Flexibuzz message will confirm whether the day is to go ahead at 8 am Friday morning. At this stage the forecast is very promising, stating that it will be cloudy, with a top of 19C with a slight chance of showers in the late afternoon and evening. Fingers crossed.


2019 Prep Information Evening

Last night over 80 parents attended the information session for parents of 2019 prep students. The presentation focussed upon preparing children for the transition to school and opened with a recording of several current prep students recalling their feelings on their first day at school. The take away messages were:

  • Prepare children for the transition by using a lunch box and discussing what you eat first
  • Developing your child’s skill to put on and take off a windcheater and
  • Say good bye in a warm, happy and confident manner on the first morning.


Trees to be checked on Saturday

Every year the school employs an arbourist to check and trim the trees as needed. Greg usually brings his crew on Melbourne Cup day however this year it was too wet to operate safely. Greg and his team will be working at our school on Saturday, so play areas may be restricted during his visit.

Paul Mulroyan

Thursday 1st November 2018

Dear Parents,


Grade 5/6 Camp


The Grade 5/6 students are now into the 4th day of their Canberra Tour. By this stage they will have visited the new and former Parliament Houses, the Australian War Memorial, the Royal Mint, Questacon, the National Museum as well as the Electoral Education Centre. The tour has been a valuable learning experience building on all their studies at school this year. The regular Flexibuzz messages and photos highlight how much our students are enjoying their time away. I’m sure there will be some tired but very happy children step off the buses on Friday. Thank-you to Mr Barkell, Ms Heywood, Mr Lumby, Ms Handley and Ros Blake for organising such a valuable learning experience for our students.

Canteen News

The canteen received its long awaited refurbishment this week. Di and her team of volunteers now have a much more functional work space with additional preparation and storage areas and a larger oven to prepare lunch orders for our students. Thank-you to Tom, from Tamar Cabinets, (Kaan’s Dad), for supporting the school with a very competitive price.


Grade 1/2s Visit ACMI

Grade 1/2A, 1/2C & 1/2 D had an exciting excursion to ACMI, the Australian Centre for Moving Images today. The students learned how movies are made and put together and then they were able to apply their knowledge of Fairy Tales to produce their own movie using the green screen technology. 1/2B and 1/2E will be going to ACMI on the 15th of November. Once all the 1/2s have been to ACMI, parents will be invited to attend a Grade 1/2 movie premiere in the BER, after assembly, on a Friday yet to be announced.


School Uniforms

As the weather gets warmer children often take off and leave windcheaters and jackets on the ground which is leading to an overflow of uniforms in the lost property boxes. It is a shame to see so many clothing items not being used. Please check that all your windcheaters and jackets are labelled to make them easier to be returned to their owners.



Joe Scarfo


Thursday 25th October 2018

Dear Parents,

Fourth term has been very busy with many activities that have enhanced the curriculum. The Italian Day was appreciated by students who learnt about the cultural significance and steps to the tarantella dance. Students also enjoyed the opportunity to eat a free Italian style ice-cream at lunch.   

Zoo visit by Preps

Preps visited the zoo last Friday as part of their study of animals. The students knew many of the animals from their discussion of books that were read in class; the excursion enriched students understanding. Their senses were stimulated as they saw how large or small the animals were and heard and smelt them as they walked through the zoo.  Children participated in the Early Learners Explore program where they felt animal fur, a snake’s skin and create animal habitats.

Grade 5 & 6 students visit Canberra

Most senior students are heading to Canberra from Monday 29 October to Friday 2 November for the biennial camp to the national capital. This is part of their current unit on government in Australia. Students have learnt about the three tiers of government: local, state and federal. They will now visit the new and former Parliament Houses, the Australian War memorial, the Royal Mint, Questacon, the national Museum and the Electoral Education Centre among others.

The bus leaves for Canberra at 7:30am on Monday. Students are expected here by 7am, we expect the bus to return around 5pm, depending on traffic conditions. Flexibuzz messages will be sent regularly and updates of their return journey will be provided from mid-afternoon. I wish to acknowledge the following staff who take on the duty of care for students for the duration of the camp without remuneration or compensation: Dean Barkell, Bettina Handley, Jenna Heywood, Kendall Lumby and Ros Blake.

Spring plantings growing well in school garden

New plantings of tomatoes, lettuce, spinach, leeks, eggplants and spring onions are growing very well in our garden. Many thanks to Mr Boffa and his regular crew of enthusiastic student gardeners for keeping the plants well-watered and relatively weed free.

Preps to visit Kindergarten

Prep students will visit the kindergarten next week as part of the transition program for 2019 students. The visits will take about an hour and involve students working with kinder children on several activities.


3/4s cricket skills competition

Tomorrow students in Grades 3/4 will visit Fairburn Park from 9:30 to 11:30. Students from Avondale Primary and other schools will be grouped together to work on developing cricket skills. This is a great way for children to meet their counterparts in neighbouring schools before playing them in interschool sports competitions in Years 5 and 6. Mr Cleary and class teachers will attend the session.

School Council News

Local member for Niddrie Ben Carroll accepted an invitation to visit the school council on Tuesday evening. School Council had previously presented a case for a new school building to Mr Carroll who was very sympathetic to this case. He stated that the school had provided him with sufficient information to make the case, however funds had been used for the redevelopment of the Autistic school in Doutta Gulla and the new facility at Rose Hill Secondary. Mr Carroll stated that Avondale Primary is at the top of his list for future funding.

School Council approved the upgrade to the school canteen: a new wider stove and cabinet work including drawers will be installed as well as a new food preparation and island bench.


Paul Mulroyan


Thursday 18th October 2018

Dear Parents,

Celebrating student achievement in Grades 3/4
Students in Grades 3 and 4 have been studying Early White Settlement and the Gold Rush over the past two terms. An important part of this experience was their camp, last week, at Sovereign Hill Goldfields.
Students discovered and tried some of the techniques miners used to find gold, such as panning and sluicing. They also experienced the confinement of an underground mine. This has enriched their understanding of the life and hardships faced by nineteenth century miners and their families.
I congratulate students and their teachers for the quality of their discussions and their projects that illustrate their developing understanding of our history. Pictured here are two dioramas depicting mining at Sovereign Hill; you can view these and others in the school foyer.


Congratulations Arden Stevens

Congratulations to Arden who participated in the 200m sprint and triple jump at the regional athletics meeting. Arden competed with the best athletes from schools in South West Victoria and managed to make the final in both events. A very impressive effort. Well done Arden.


Reading with children

It is the joy and love of sharing a good book on a nightly basis that sets the foundation for children’s reading success, and ensures that reading is given the priority it deserves. Reading regularly with someone who cares is the inspiration that all readers deserve.

Setting aside half an hour to read a chapter or two each week night, as children settle into bed, has many benefits for your family, it:

  • develops a love of literature and stimulates a child’s imagination
  • provides a regular bedtime routine
  • settles children ready for a good night’s sleep.

This also a good time to collect and recharge digital devices away from their bedroom.

There is more about helping your child with reading and writing at home at the Primary English Teaching Association Australia’s web page: http://www.petaa.edu.au/imis_prod/w/Teaching_Resources/Parents_guide.aspx/


Election Day barbecue – volunteers required

Our Fundraising Committee plans to hold a barbecue at the school on Saturday 24 November, the day of the next state election. This is a great opportunity to raise money from the wider community. We seek parents to work a two hour shift in a team of three or four, between 7am to around 2pm. The money raised will help meet the cost of extending our well used playground.


Have you changed your contact details?

If you have new mobile number or email address, please let the office staff (Ros or Sue) know so that your child’s record is kept up to date.

Paul Mulroyan


Thursday 11th October 2018

Dear Parents,

Be SunSmart in Terms 1 and 4

Students are required to wear a hat at recess times during the warmer months. We follow the SunSmart protocols and are quite vigilant in enforcing this directive. Students who have not brought a hat are required to spend their recess periods in the library alcove. They may visit the canteen or toilet, however they are not permitted to play with their friends in the school yard. Please ensure your child has their hat with them each day so that they can enjoy their study breaks.

Grade 3/4 students enjoy Ballarat camp.

On Monday, students had hands-on experiences panning for gold at Sovereign Hill as part of their three day camp. The camp compliments their studies into early settlement in Victoria. Students also visited the Eureka Centre where they were informed about gold mining in Ballarat.

Many thanks to the staff who cared for the students during the camp, thanks also to Amanda Gerace for regularly posting Flexibuzz messages to parents of grade 3/4 students.

Good luck Arden, well done Marley…

Congratulations and good luck to Arden Stevens who has qualified for the Western Region athletics championships at Keilor Park Track on Tuesday, October 16th. Arden will compete in the Triple Jump and 200m (11 Year Boys).

Marley Stowers also qualified for the 9/10 Girls shot-put, however she will miss the competition as she is attending Somers Camp. We heartily congratulate both students on their sporting achievement.

Homework for students

The homework policy was developed and passed by school council in 2016. The policy explains the principles. And learning focus of homework. It also provides parents with the types of homework that can be expected at various year levels. Homework should not be arduous for students, nor are parents expected to do the work for their child. If your child is having difficulty with the homework, please contact the class teacher. A copy of the policy is published with today’s newsletter.

Lost property boxes overflowing

Our two lost property boxes are overflowing with unclaimed uniform articles. Most items are windcheaters, if your child is missing part of their uniform, please check the boxes which are located in the corridors.

Canteen volunteers required for Thursdays

Di does not have any volunteers for Thursdays this term. I ask parents to consider helping once a month on this day. On days when there are no volunteers to assist, the canteen will prepare lunches only, window sales may not be possible.


Paul Mulroyan


Thursday 20th September 2018


Dear Parents



 Safety on public transport       


A report was brought to my attention recently about two of our students on a bus who were questioned by a passenger. The students answered the questions respectfully, however the witness became concerned as the questions started to seek information about their school and home. I suggest that parents discuss safety with children and provide a script such as: ’Thank you for your questions but my parents have told me not to talk to adults I do not know.’


Book Parade


Congratulations to our students who wore simple, colourful, imaginative and home-made costumes. Students looked wonderful as they paraded around the stadium in their grades. The simplicity of their outfits added to the appeal – the homemade paper mask or painted box was all that was needed to enjoy the character students portrayed. Many thanks to parents being very supportive.


School Council News


2019 School Fees will be $260 per child and a $20 grounds payment. Council discussed the cost of book packs and classroom consumables (various types of bulk paper, adhesives, paints and consumables). This year the cost of software used by students is also included. This has become a major expense for our school as enrolments increase beyond the 400 benchmark.

New books: Council approved the expenditure of $7,000 to purchase additional take-home readers for Preps to Grade 2 students. Our students have read through our current supply and new books are needed to maintain their interest. The new readers will be available for borrowing early next term.

New artificial turf: Laying artificial turf in another area was approved by council. It will be installed between the buildings near the library. The turf is very popular with students and at times becomes quite crowded; it was agreed that another area for older students will be a welcome addition.

School Uniform Online Survey: Council is seeking parents’ opinion on the quality of uniform articles, the convenience of the current supplier’s location and overall satisfaction.  There are nine questions where you rank your opinion (1 for low through to 10 for high) and one comment area. To complete this survey go to: https://goo.gl/forms/sawEFhWc7VrT6YBs1


Moonee Valley Initiative


Do you have retired relatives looking for something to do?

Moonee valley Repair Café - community information drop-in session

Are you passionate about cutting down the amount of waste you create? Do you have an old heirloom sitting in your garage in need of repair? Repair Cafés are for you and one is coming to Moonee Valley very soon!

Some enthusiastic community members are starting up a repair café in Moonee Valley and are looking for your support. They will need a range of skilled helpers, so if you can fix a punctured bike tyre, darn a sweater or rewire a 1920s tube-radio they need you! Whatever your particular talents may be, come along to this session to see how you can get involved. Don’t worry, if your can’t use a wrench or sewing machine, the group also need greeters and photographers and generally passionate people to make this amazing idea happen.

So come along to this drop-in session, make some new friends, learn more about repair cafés and whatever your particular talent may be they’d love to find a place for you!

When: 6pm-8pm, Thursday 6 October

Where: Sam Merrifield Library, 762 Mt Alexander Road, Moonee Ponds

Further information at https://www.facebook.com/events/233006950709430/


I hope you and your family have a great holiday.


Paul Mulroyan




Thursday 13th September 2018



Dear Parents,


Good bedtime habits help learning


The amount of sleep your child requires depends on their age: three to six year-olds need 10–12 hours and seven to 12 year-olds need 10–11 hours. Changing your routine to ensure children get the hours required can be challenging. The Royal Children’s Hospital has some great advice for parents at: https://www.rch.org.au/kidsinfo/fact_sheets/Bedtime_problems_Preschool/


A good night’s sleep is important for every child to be healthy, active and fully attentive at school. Digital device screens emit blue light. While this is fine during the day, of an evening it reduces levels of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin. This makes it hard for children to go to sleep. We suggest that digital devices are collected for charging overnight at least 30 minutes before bedtime. Books are a great way to prepare for sleep. To read more about the effects of blue light on sleep, you can read the article: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/q-a-why-is-blue-light-before-bedtime-bad-for-sleep/


Sports Day – Friday


This is a fun day that students enjoy each year. It is an opportunity for multi-age groups to cooperate together to get high scores in skill building activities. The sports start at 9:20am, each activity will last 20 minutes followed by a five minute transition. After the fourth rotation, students return to their grade to collect their donut or play-lunch. At 11:30, students start the second round of rotations. Lunch recess: 1:30 to 2:10. 2:15 Year 6 marking competition followed by the drawing of raffle at 2:30pm. Parents are warmly welcome to attend and assist with the activities if desired.


Garden Club news:


Students in the Garden Club today spread their homemade compost into the soil of the garden in preparation for planting. The gardeners have been perfecting their compost mix by adding organic green matter, straw, paper and water on a weekly basis. We are using it to add nutrients into our soil!


School Uniform Survey


Our school council has a five year contract with Lowes High Point to supply school uniforms. This contract will finish in 12 months. It is timely therefore to survey parents so that council can identify parent views on the quality and convenience offered by Lowes. You are invited to participate in this online survey via this link: https://goo.gl/forms/sawEFhWc7VrT6YBs1


Book Week Parade on Wednesday 19 Sept.


Students, teachers and parents enjoy our annual book week parade. This year it will be held in the gymnasium on Wednesday 19th from 9:15am. Teachers will award prizes to costumes that are based on a book character and are: imaginative, homemade, simple and colourful. Prizes will be decided in class before the parade and distributed to the winner in each class after the parade.



Semester Two reports to be emailed.


I wish to give you advanced notice that the end of year reports will be emailed to parents in December. They will be PDF files that can be stored digitally or printed. Parents will be provided with a printed copy if requested. Please ensure your current email address is provided to office staff.


I hope you have a great week


Paul Mulroyan





Thursday 3rd September 2018



Dear Parents,



New artificial turf very popular with students


Younger students are enjoying the new artificial turf area as a picnic spot, group meeting place, exercise mat or just a place to walk with an interesting feeling under-foot. When we acquire toys for the new container, students will play with them on this area.



5 minutes of your time can give our students $80,000 of improvements


The Victorian Government’s Pick My Project community grants will distribute over one million dollars to each of 15 regions across the state. The projects are selected by popular online voting. We ask all families to go to https://pickmyproject.vic.gov.au/ and login or register to vote for Avondale Primary Activity Playground. Please ask your friends and relatives to vote for our project as well. It would take over four years to raise this amount from fundraising.  Voting closes at 5pm, Monday 17 September. until 5pm, Monday 17 Septemberuntil 5pm, Monday 17 September




Online Student safety – your vigilance needed


At a recent school presentation on Bullying and Cyber Safety, students in grades 3-6 were asked by the presenter if they were engaged in social media or online games. A staggering 75-80% of children stood up and confirmed that they had agreed to the terms and conditions of joining the sites.


Many of the children seemed unaware that they were too young to be on these sites.


Most social media services require users to be at least 13 years old. This is to comply with the Children’ Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998. This is a US law preventing the collection and storage of personal information from a child under 13.This link shows social media services, the terms of use minimum age, app store and google play ratings: https://www.esafety.gov.au/education-resources/iparent/staying-safe/social-networking/is-there-an-age-limit-for-kids-on-social-media




Parent Opinion Survey - extended


The closing date for the online Parent Opinion Survey has been extended to Sunday 9 September 2018. Parents can submit completed online surveys until 11:59PM Sunday 9 September 2018.

-Should you have any technical queries regarding the “Your School, Your Say” portal, please do not hesitate to contact ORIMA Research on 1800 654 585 (toll free), or by email: pos@orima.com.

-Should you have any participation or general survey-related queries, please contact the Department by email:  parentopinion.survey@edumail.vic.gov.au



Parent Helpers information sessions – Thursday 13th September 9:30 and 2:30


Parents will need to have a current volunteer’s Working with Children check (WWC) to assist in classes, excursions and canteen next year. These are free for volunteers. Parent Information sessions will be given next week by Ms Heywood. Laptop computers will be available for parents to use immediately following the information sessions to apply for a WWC; Ms Heywood is able to provide assistance when applying online.


I hope you have a great week


Paul Mulroyan




Thursday 30th August 2018



Dear Parents,




Students should be on site by 8:45am


Having a few moments to socialise with friends before class begins, assists students settle into their studies quickly. School starts at 8:50am and that is when class rolls are taken. Students who arrive after that time must report to the office so that the CASES attendance record can be updated. Recently we have had several instances where a student entered class, without visiting the office, after the electronic roll was marked. This resulted in parents receiving a SMS reporting their child’s absence by the system.  I ask parents to ensure that your child arrives at school before the bell.




Aftercare now on site


A warm welcome to Sonya and her crew as Out of Hours School Care is now held at Avondale Primary School in our BER building.  Before care starts at 7:15am while Aftercare finishes at 6pm.  This program can accommodate up to 50 students, currently there are 38 students attending.




Students practice an off-site evacuation


I congratulate students and staff for the calm and effective way they evacuated the school buildings in yesterday’s drill. All students were sitting in their grades at the back of the oval,  3 minutes and 20 seconds after the siren was first sounded. Teachers then escorted students to the offsite assembly area outside the gymnasium.



On a sad note


Former Avondale teacher Alice Gilbert passed away last Saturday 25th August. Her funeral is next Tuesday 4th September at the Strathmore Uniting Church (Corner of Crossways and Uplands Road), commencing at 11:30 am. If you have friends or neighbours who had children here in the early 1990s, they may wish to know.



Stage one of a new play area established


We are developing a new option for students to play with toys and construction material at recess times. The new brown container near the sand pit (affectionately known as Rusty), will have materials that students can borrow to play with on the new artificial grass area. The implementation stages are:


1. Laying of the artificial turf, 2. Installation of a roller-door on the side of the container, 3. Assembly of shelving units, 4. Acquisition of resources and 5. Grand opening. Students are enjoying playing on the new area, however I ask parents to keep pets well away from the grass for hygiene reasons. Many thanks to Mr Scarfo for coordinating this project.





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