The St Francis of Assisi Parent Handbook contains all the information you and your child will need.
You can print a full version to read at your convenience by pressing the ‘Print to PDF’ button at the top of the page. Please note that it is a large file and may take a few moments to load.
If you have any further questions in relation to school times, dates, policies or other general enquiries, please feel free to contact us.
The St Francis of Assisi Parent Handbook contains all the information you and your child will need.
Welcome & Introduction
Thank you for entrusting your children to us during this important stage of their education. The staff at St Francis of Assisi Primary is very aware that your child is God's gift to both you and your family, and to the wider community of the world. We will strive to assist you in the education of your children, helping them to grow spiritually, academically, physically and emotionally.
Our hope for your children is that they will be happy here at St Francis’ School, participating in a variety of enriching experiences and challenges that will enable them to develop their many abilities to their fullest potential. We believe that children learn best when they feel good about themselves, valuing who they are and what they can do. To this end, we will endeavour to help the children develop their gifts.
We also believe that all youngsters have the potential to learn even better, when they see parents and teachers interested in their achievements and mutually supportive of their learning experiences. For these reasons, we encourage you to feel free to talk with us and help us to know and understand your child even better. May your child, with the care, love and concern that surrounds them, grow in the peace, strength, gentleness and love of Christ, the centre-point of our lives.
Our vision for the children of St Francis of Assisi, Glendenning, is for them to belong to a peaceful, Catholic community, which celebrates its cultural diversity, is accepting of each child’s individuality and strives to follow Franciscan traditions of responsibility, gentleness, respect, compassion and generosity of spirit.
It is hoped that the contents of this booklet will provide opportunity for parents and children to share a common understanding of the expectations of the school, and so present opportunities for growth and learning.
‘Let parents and teachers perform their services as partners and pay due regard to every educational activity, so that the children entrusted to our care may grow to full maturity in Christ.’
[Declaration on Christian Education. Vatican II]
|School Contact Details||Parish Contact Details|
Mrs Jenny Bellenger
Miss Deborah Sheridan
School Office Times
8:30 am – 3:30 pm Monday to Friday
St Francis of Assisi Primary
Phone: 02 9832 3062
Rev Gerard O'Dempsey OFM Cap
Phone: 02 9832 4461
St Francis of Assisi Primary, Glendenning, aims to help each child develop as a happy, fulfilled, Christian person, who is willing to contribute to our world in positive ways.
With this aim in mind, we hope to help to lead the children to:
- understand that they are becoming responsible for their own actions
- develop their God-given gifts in order to be happy and fulfilled people
- pursue academic and cultural goals in our Christ-centred environment
- realise that God loves everyone, and has a special plan for each of us
- come to know that Jesus Christ invites us to follow his way of life.
The children are encouraged and helped to develop their knowledge and love of Jesus through their daily prayer, their Religious Education lessons, and in school prayer celebrations, which parents are always most welcome.
The General rules for students at St Francis of Assisi Primary are:
- Be peaceful.
- Be safe.
- Be a learner.
- Be responsible.
- Be respectful.
Your child's regular attendance at school is essential to their learning. If, however, through illness, or other causes, your child is absent, please send a note of explanation to school upon your child’s return. There is a legal requirement to explain a child’s absence from school. It is also a safety precaution for your child.
In the case of families travelling interstate/overseas for extended periods, it is expected that prior notice be given to the principal. All absences are recorded in the class roll which is a legal document and may be asked for at any time by school supervisors.
If there is an Order from the Family Law Court with regard to your child, it is essential that a copy of this be kept in the principal’s office. The school has the responsibility to address the specific issues in the order.
Some children travel to and from school each day by bus. Busways delivers the children at the Stone Street entrance to the school. The same happens in the afternoons—the children are assembled into the three bus lines (including early bus), and are supervised until they get onto their bus and leave for home.
Other children walk to school. They can enter the school via the gates in Stone Street, Armitage Drive or Gregory Street.
The children who are brought to school by car can be dropped at the Gregory Street gate, or parents can park off Stone Street and bring their children into the playground.
If parents enter the school playground in the morning, they are asked to wait in the Canteen area. The teachers’ duty of care and supervision responsibility is hampered when a large number of adults move around the playground in the morning.
Playground supervision commences each morning at 8:25 am. Prior to this time, the teaching staff is expected to be available for prayer, meetings and class preparation.
At St Francis of Assisi we believe that when gathering as a school for an assembly we are seeking to create:
- a sense of community
- a sharing community
- a school spirit and identity
- a pride in belonging
- a time to celebrate
- a space where the Spirit is present.
- Whole school assembly on Friday afternoon (fortnightly).
- Special assemblies, e.g. Feasts, Mothers’ and Fathers’ Days.
Awards belief statement
At St Francis of Assisi Primary we believe that awards are presented to students:
- to promote and affirm self-worth
- to praise attitude, behaviours and work
- to encourage greater effort
- to reward effort and excellence
- to publicly recognise and to acknowledge endeavours and achievements.
Awards are presented at:
- module assemblies
- school assemblies
- special assemblies.
- Respect Award - this will be awarded to a child from each class, each fortnight (Friday afternoon). The recipient will be acknowledged in the school newsletter.
- Classroom Award – this will be awarded to children in their class, who achieve their personal goals.
NOTE: Students who receive a RESPECT award will be invited to a Morning Tea with the Principal at the end of that term (Infants will be separate to Primary morning tea).
‘Where two or more are gathered in my name, I am there with them.’
Please enquire at the school office for further information about our Before and After School Care option, exclusive to students at our school, and operated by the Catholic Education Office Parramatta.
Bus passes are available for all children from Kindergarten to Year 2 for free bus travel to and from school. Children in the primary classes, Years 3-6, who live beyond a radius of 1.6 km from school are also eligible for free bus travel. Bus pass application forms are available at the school office.
If your child loses his/her bus pass, please contact the school office and request an application for a replacement form. The application is verified by the school office and returned to the family to be posted or taken to Busways, Glendenning depot. The cost is $10.00. A suggestion is to attach the bus pass securely to your child's bag.
Busways has the right to withdraw a child's bus pass if the child's behaviour is poor. Please encourage your child to behave sensibly and safely on the bus. Their own safety and the safety of others depends upon it.
If your child leaves belongings on the bus, it is your responsibility to contact Busways on 9625 8900.
The purpose of the canteen is to prepare lunches for the children. Orders can be placed online through Munch Monitor, or placed directly at the canteen before the bell rings. If ordering online, you will need to create an account with Munch Monitors using the initial login and password. The orders are filled and returned to the children at 10:55 am and 12:50 pm. Parents are responsible for their child's lunch orders. If ordering over the counter for recess and lunch, orders need to be written on separate bags labelled with the order and whether it is for recess or lunch. Children who have no lunch (for whatever reason) will have a sandwich made for them and a note sent home.
Click here to be redirected to the Munch Monitors website: https://www.munchmonitor.com/
Initial Login is sfoag and the password is munch2761
St Francis of Assisi school has established guidelines for handling incidents associated with safety and emergency situations. In times of crisis, we may include the services of the Catholic Education Office Trauma Counselling Services and Support Network.
Due to the size of the school, the dismissal procedures need to run smoothly at 3:00 pm. The safety of all children is a priority. Children move to their dismissal areas at 3:00 pm and leave school in the following ways:
- Children who walk home (‘the walkers’)
- The Stone Street walkers leave the school via the Stone Street gate opposite and down from Burger King.
- The Gregory Street walkers leave the school via the Gregory Street pedestrian gate.
- The children who travel home by bus leave the school via the Stone Street Gate.
- The children who meet their parents on the car line will be taken to the pick-up bay via the pedestrian gate in Armitage Drive. Parents should wait in their cars in the queue and move forward as the car in front leaves.
- Children who attend ‘After School Care’ on the smaller buses leave the school via Armitage Drive.
- Children who attend the ‘Early Learning Centre’ across the road, need to assemble outside the Year 3 module and are then escorted out by a teacher via Stone Street.
- The children who leave the school with their parents or care-giver need to assemble in the Parent collect lines.
- Those who go to the east (Hungry Jack side) leave via the Stone Street gate. Parents who leave via the Stone Street gate are asked to wait near the Canteen.
- Those who go to the west (towards Red Rooster side) leave via the Gregory Street gate. Parents who leave via the Gregory Street gate are asked to wait outside the gate.
All children are encouraged to borrow and exchange books at their weekly class library lesson. Please take an interest in your child's library books and read their books with them. In order to borrow from the library, all children are required to have a library bag in which to carry their books.
After checking carefully, students should report lost property to the class teacher. It is important that parents mark clearly all items of clothing. All unclaimed items of clothing are placed in bins that are left outside the staffroom during the day.
It is important for children to arrive at school on time. If they are coming to school late, an adult must come into the office to sign them in. No student will be permitted to leave the school grounds for any purpose, without the written consent of parents.
Parents are reminded that the playground is unsupervised before 8:25 am. Children arriving at school before this time are to remain seated in the Canteen area until the duty teacher arrives.
The Commonwealth Bank provides facilities for our children to bank regularly. Application forms for new accounts are available at the school office. Banking day is Wednesday and the children's deposit books are returned to them via the classroom teacher. There is no obligation for your child to open an account, or to bank through the school, but the school does receive a small annual commission for offering this service, which is put towards classroom resources.
A detailed plan has been formulated in the event of an emergency requiring the total school population to be moved to a ‘safe area’.
The plan concerns the safety of all and as a result children must follow it to the letter. Speed and cooperation are the two essential elements of the plan. Maps are displayed in each classroom and fire drills will be practiced regularly.
Excursions away from school are an important part of the education process. From time to time during the school year, you will be asked to give your permission for your child to participate in an excursion. These events are integral to the children's learning and all children are expected to attend. Expenses are kept to a minimum to ensure maximum participation. Excursions are well-planned. The teachers will explain to you how they support the classroom programs.
Permission notes for excursions should be sent to the letterbox located at the student office with the child's name and class clearly marked. It does take a little more time to prepare an envelope but it helps if your child misplaces it. In most instances the cost of the excursion will be invoiced to your school fees account.
|Classes Commence||8:55 am|
||10:55 – 11.25 am|
||12:55 - 1:30 pm
Each year official days are set aside for the development of staff. These days are used by staff to plan curriculum. You will be advised of the dates as soon as these have been confirmed.
If wishing to make an appointment (e.g. to see the classroom teacher or collect your child early from school), it is necessary to come to the office and see the secretary in the first instance.
In the interest of safety, all persons entering the school grounds during class times are required to enter via the school office. Both parents and tradesmen must sign in and out of the ‘Visitor’s’ logbook. The ‘Visitor’s’ tag supplied must be clearly displayed at all times.
Please notify your child’s teacher and office staff immediately of any changes to your contact details so that you may be contacted in the event of an emergency.
Each Thursday, a school newsletter is sent home with the children and archived on the school website.
The weekly newsletter is an important feature of our community. The Principal uses the newsletter to write to parents each week and link a topic of special interest to an aspect of our Catholic faith. Sharing stories of faith and hope through the newsletter is one way that our school is able to reach out to all in our community and encourage parents, students and staff to work together to reveal aspects of God's wisdom and love to the world.
The newsletter also contains important information about events at school, ensuring that you are kept up-to-date.
The office box is located outside the student office entrance. Children place all notes, letters and excursion permissions into this box.
Parents are always free to make an appointment to speak with the class teachers. There are formal times of reporting in place. At the moment these are:
- Goal setting – this takes place in the first few weeks of the school year where we have an opportunity to meet the parents and discuss your child’s goals for the year.
- Midyear Statements of Progress are sent home early in June and are followed by a formal parent/teacher interview so that the reports can be discussed.
- End-of-year Summary Reports arrive home early December and you may request an interview.
Teachers will always call parents to arrange interviews if they are concerned about a child’s progress. Likewise, parents should arrange an appointment with their child's class teacher if they are anxious about their child's learning or behaviour. Parent/teacher communication is essential if the partnership between home and school is to be effective.
The school diary is another form of communication between home and school. Parents and teachers are encouraged to use this each day.
Class teachers are not available for interviews during class time.
Embracing Learning at St Francis of Assisi Primary
At St Francis of Assisi we believe that students should be encouraged to explore different activities to develop their talents, skills and interests, including:
- creative and performing arts opportunities in choir, music and drama
- school Choir and Band: We have various opportunities to enjoy and perform at functions such as the Diocesan Creative Arts Expo and Eisteddfods
- Book Week activities that enhance our reading program
- Year 6 Diocesan ‘Voice of Youth’ public speaking competition
- sporting events which encourage enjoyment for all
- representing the school by competing at inter-diocesan and state level in various arenas in netball, touch football, basketball and soccer
- transition programs, including the Kindergarten Starting School program, which is held over four sessions in Term 4 of the year before the student starts school, and Year 6 high school transition preparation
- student leadership opportunities, including formal leadership responsibilities for Year 6 students
- excursions and incursions, including in-school performances aimed at developing and deepening students’ knowledge, understanding and skills across a wide range of subject areas.
As educators, we face the enormous task of making schooling relevant for today's learners. While there is no single roadmap, we work within and across networks to improve the learning outcomes for each and every student through what we offer.
Our Religious Education program, Sharing Our Story, encourages our students to come to know Jesus and our Catholic heritage. We support this through our pastoral care, Mass attendance and prayer. We say the Angelus regularly as a whole school and offer a calendar of liturgical celebrations. We assemble as a community each term, and celebrate liturgies to reaffirm our commitment to being part of the Mission of the Good Shepherd, and are supported by our parish priest. Parish-based Sacramental programs for the preparation of our students for the Sacraments of Reconciliation, Eucharist and Confirmation are also conducted in our parishes of Good Shepherd, Plumpton and Holy Family, Emerton.
Our English program caters for the children's interests, abilities and individual needs and focuses on learning skills in reading, writing, listening and speaking.
We have a 'hands on' program designed to stimulate and challenge the students with mathematical concepts in number, space, geometry, patterns, algebra and measurement.
History and Geography
History and Geography exposes the children to people, traditions, lifestyles, changes in our world, and caring for our environment. Outdoor education is a developing facet of our curriculum, in response to environmental awareness. This incorporates caring for our school environment and sharing these good habits at home and in our neighbourhood.
Science and Technology
Science and Technology encourages 'hands on' experiences so that the children may explore scientific and technological areas relevant to their lives.
Technology is integral in today’s learning. We utilise a collection of interactive whiteboards, flip videos, iPads, laptop banks and digital cameras, and incorporate new technology into all aspects of classroom life. Our technology allows all students to access school work from home.
Each class enjoys music and drama lessons that offer the children the opportunity to develop their talents freely and wisely in an encouraging environment. The Music program is based on the creative arts syllabus. There is also a school choir, a dance group and visits from performers (such as Musica Viva and concerts). Creative arts are also integrated within other key learning areas.
Personal Development, Health and Physical Education
Personal Development, Health and Physical Education addresses student’s physical, social and emotional wellbeing. Each class has a sport/physical education lesson weekly. Students in Years 3 to 6 are given the opportunity to compete in local cluster, zone and diocesan events.
Health & Medication
From time to time, children contract infectious diseases such as Chicken Pox, Measles, Impetigo, Scabies, Diphtheria, Glandular Fever, Whooping Cough, Mumps, Ringworm, Conjunctivitis, and German Measles.
All of the above are highly infectious/contagious and require that the child be kept at home until the infection has cleared. The Principal must notify Public Health if there is an incidence of any of these diseases at the school.
Our facilities for the treatment of injuries at the school sick bay are for basic first aid. If you are in any way doubtful about the fitness/health of your child for school on a particular day, you should make arrangements for his/her care at home.
Should your child become sick or suffer an accident at school you (or the emergency contact person) will be contacted to take your child home.
In the case of serious accident, an ambulance will be called to attend to the child at school, and/or to transport the child to the nearest hospital.
In such cases parents will be contacted immediately.
This is why it is important for every family to provide an emergency contact person as well as up-to-date home and work phone numbers.
Some children require medication at school. Medication must be prescribed by a doctor or it cannot be administered at school. Written instructions must accompany the medication. The instructions should include:
- the child's name and name of medication
- the amount to be administered.
Medication is always administered at 11:30 am to accommodate a four hourly regime. Please use the appropriate school form for permission to administer medication.
- Only prescription medication will be administered by the staff of St Francis of Assisi school.
- Medication must be kept in the office and not in the classroom.
- Panadol will not be administered at school unless written instructions are received from your family doctor.
Uniform & Grooming
The school office has sample uniforms to try on and order forms are available. The order will be filled for you and will be available for collection or arrangements can be made to have it sent home with your child. All uniform items must be paid for at the school office at the time of ordering. The sports uniform, hats, bags, and library bags are available for purchase at the school office all year.
|Checked dress||Navy blue shorts|
|White socks||Navy Blue|
|Black shoes||Black shoes|
|Navy blue hair ties or ribbon||Lemon short sleeved shirt with school logo|
|Green school hat||Green school hat|
|Checked tunic||Navy blue trousers|
|Lemon long sleeved shirt||Lemon long sleeved shirt with school logo|
|Checked scissor tie||Checked tie|
|White socks or navy blue stockings||Navy socks|
|Black shoes||Black shoes|
|Navy blue hair ties or ribbons||Green school hat|
|Green school hat||School jacket|
|School sports shorts||School sports shorts|
|School sports shirt||School sports shirt|
|Plain white socks||Plain white socks|
|Plain white sports shoes||Plain white sports shoes|
|Green school hat||Green school hat|
|In winter long sports pants are available for boys and girls|
We take pride in our school uniform and encourage the children to do so too. It is important that the youngsters wear the appropriate uniform on the correct day to suit the activities planned.
Please write your child's name clearly on all their uniform items so that they can be returned to you if lost (and found)!
The school hat and school bag are essential items of school uniform. The wearing of the school hat and using the
St Francis school bag is compulsory.
What to do When
If you are going to be late collecting your child in the afternoon, please contact the school office by telephone before 2:30 pm so that a message can be passed on to your child.
If you wish to collect your child early from school please send a note to your child’s teacher and complete a ‘partial absence form’ at the office before collecting your child. Your child will be called to the office for you to take them home.
If you wish to see the Principal, please contact the school office to make an appointment.
If you wish to see your child’s teacher you need to write a letter to the teacher with your contact details and reason for the appointment. If there is no response, please enquire at the school office, or write a letter in your child’s school diary to make a mutually convenient time.
- Keep your child at home, phone the school office and on your child’s return, send a note of explanation to the classroom teacher.
- Parents are asked not to send their child to school when he/she is not well. Children get very distressed when they are sick and they also run the risk of infecting the other children.
- If your child is well enough to return to school, but still requires medication, written notification stating dosage should be given to the office staff. Medication, where possible, should be in measured doses.
If your child loses a school uniform item you should ask the office staff or check the lost property box. Please ensure that all items of clothing are clearly marked with your child’s name.
Policies and Procedures
St Francis of Assisi has a number of school-based policies and procedures that govern various aspects of our School life. These provide the framework within which we operate.
The Catholic Education Office, Parramatta Diocese also provides advice and recommendations on educational and administrative policies and priorities, and monitors policy implementation.