Photo: Setsubun, Feb 2020

Huntingdale Primary School

20 February 2020
Issue Two
Principal and Assistant Principal's Page
School Council
Dates to Remember 
Huntingdale Primary School
03 9544 2318
Grange Street
Oakleigh South, Victoria, 3167

Principal and Assistant Principal's Page

Principal's Report

It’s been a busy fortnight at the school. The weather has been a real mix - typical of Melbourne!

Thank you to our parents who have been paying their school fees and expenses. If you have any questions about this, please see the office.


Year 6 Tops

The Year 6 tops and jackets have arrived. The Year 6 students I have spoken to are really happy with how the clothes look and fit. They really stand out in the school to everyone! Below is a photo of Hue and Aaliyah showing off their new uniform. Thank you to Mrs Penfold for helping organise the tops.


Parents as Partners

This year our Parents as Partners night will be held on Tuesday 25th February.


The purpose of the Parents as Partners Night is for:

  • Students to show their parents their classroom and introduce their teachers.
  • Teachers to share key information about the school year e.g. timetables, homework etc.
  • Parents to share information about their child that would assist the school in their education.

The format has changed this year and we are going to have a ‘meet and greet’ sessions 1:1 with parents.

  • Years 3-6 - 10 minute (English teachers) and 5 minute (Japanese teachers)
  • Years F-2- 10 minute interviews together with the English/Japanese teachers- these will run over two nights Tuesday and Wednesday

Parents will need to access the online booking system (link below) to make an appointment time. Appointments range from 4.10-8.00pm. You must make an appointment time.

Parents can login via Flexibuzz. You can also use this link:


EVENT CODE:    7pdhy


During your session, the classroom teacher will give you a pack of key information about your child’s learning. In return we ask you to fill in a form detailing some basic information about your child and their learning to help build an understanding between the parents and teacher. The letter has already been sent home. We ask that you come prepared with it completed. 


During the night on the basketball court we will have some tables set up with information about the school.


We hope you take this opportunity to meet your child’s teachers to develop a strong working partnership between home and school.


School Council Nominations

School Council Nominations have now opened. We are looking for 4 parent representatives and 1 DET representative. We can also co-op up to 2 community representatives. If you are interested or considering running for school council please come to the school office to grab a nomination form. If you want more information about what School Council does, please come and see me.


Once we have received nominations we will ascertain whether we require a ballot based on the number of nominations and vacancies.  Please keep your eyes peeled for more updates as they come to hand on Flex Buzz.

         Event                                                           date


a. Notice of election and call for      nominations

Wed 12 February 

b. Closing date for nominations & deciding if a ballot is required

Wed 26 February 

c. Date by which the list of candidates and nominators will be posted (if needed)

Monday 2 March  

d. Date by which ballot papers will be prepared and distributed (if needed)

Wed 4 March 

e. Close of ballot (if needed)

Wed 11 March 

f. Vote count (if needed)

Thu 12 March 

g.  Declaration of poll (if needed)

Fri 13 March 

h.  Special council meeting to co-opt Community members (the Principal will preside)

Tue 24 March 

i.  First council meeting to elect office bearers (the Principal will preside)

Tue 24 March 


School Review Parent Survey

In Term 2, 2020, our school will be participating in a School Review. This occurs every four years and is a part of our School Improvement Cycle. We collect data from many sources to reflect on the last four years at Huntingdale and to help improve and inform future directions of our school.


We would greatly appreciate your feedback by answering a survey to help us prepare for our review.


Please use the following link:


This survey will close on Friday 6 March.

Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback.


Supervision of students and approaching students

Just a reminder to parents about supervision in the yard. In the morning we have a teacher on yard duty from 8.45am. Before this time, parents must supervise their own child, and be within eye sight, in the school grounds. We have noticed a number of children who are arriving early to school and are unsupervised, which is not safe. Students are not permitted to be on school grounds before 8.45am unsupervised.  After school, a teacher is on yard duty until 3.45pm. After this time, it is the responsibility of parents to look after and supervise your children and ensure that they are within your eye sight. We have a before and after school care programs run by Team Kids to look after children.  For more details please see the following web link:


When out in the yard before or after school, we ask that all parents be in eyesight of their child. Sometimes incidences happen between students in the yard before and after school. We ask that parents do not approach children that are not their own to sort out disputes, but come to the office to ask for assistance from a teacher.



Late last year, the teaching staff reviewed our teaching of respect. As a result we have an updated poster about how respect relates to children, parents, staff and visitors at Huntingdale.  As part of our Creating Our Learning Community (COLC) students will complete activities related to respect. 


We all have our part to play in modelling and teaching our children about respect. Students should demonstrate respect before school, in school and after school, when walking the street, being with your family. It is something we should do at all times.


Using terms such as ‘idiot’, ‘loser’, ‘sucks’, ‘stupid’, ‘fat’ or swearing are disrespectful to others. Swearing is unacceptable at school and in the community and I trust that all parents will remind their child of this.


Students should have respect for the school and its property - simple things such as pushing in chairs, putting rubbish in the bins, taking care of school property. This should also extend to the home and when out in the community.

We also should show respect in events such as assembly or guest speakers - by giving eye contract, clapping at the right time, sitting still, not talking to our friends.

Together parents and the school have the responsibility of building children’s understanding of respect. I ask that parents reflect on this and discuss with their children about respect and supporting the school in teaching this.

The Grade 2 Teachers have worked on Respect with their students and their work is photographed below.


Team Kids Term 1 Holiday Program

Due to building works at Huntingdale Primary School during the upcoming school holiday period, our Vacation Care program will not be able to run during the April School Holidays.


TeamKids operates programs at the following neighbouring schools/venues and encourage you to book into programs at one of these venues as an alternative option during this period:


Oakleigh Primary School

Malvern Valley Primary School

St Patrick’s Primary – Murrumbeena


McKinnon Primary School

Mount Waverley North Primary School


Please don’t hesitate to contact the school directly if you require any information regarding the building project, or TeamKids Customer Service team on 1300 035 000 for any information on booking into our neighbouring programs.


Lunch Box Tips

In the last newsletter I introduced families to

This newsletter I have included a flyer about becoming a waste warrior. Did you know that more than half of items in school bins come from food packaging brought from home? When packing your child’s lunchbox:

  • Choose foods that create less waste and minimise use of single use plastics.
  • Eliminate the need for portion packing and wrapping by using rubbish free lunch boxes


Emperor's Birthday Reception

Last week Naomi and I attended a reception at the Consul General of Japan’s residence to celebrate the Emperor's Birthday Reception. Mr Matsunaga, who many of you will remember attended our school production in 2018 (and did an amazing back flip) did an excellent speech and detailed the history of the first known encounter between Australia and Japan. I have attached his speech which you may like to read.


International Mother Tongue Day

On Friday 21 February it is International Mother Tongue Day.

The aim of this day is to recognise that keeping up your ‘family’ language is as important as learning English or any other second or third language.

In fact students who know and learn more than one language are able to make connections between languages and it also helps them overall with learning. The Department of Education and Training have information for parents about language learning. Please visit the website:

Language learning at Huntingdale

Late last year, ANZUK (a teaching agency) worked with our teachers to make a short video about language learning at Huntingdale. You can see this video on our website:

Have a great fortnight!


Ruth Biddle


Assistant Principal's Report

What a busy fortnight! It’s great to see everyone smiling and working together to create a positive learning atmosphere. I have enjoyed meeting many of our new Foundation parents whilst out of afternoon yard duty.


Classroom Visits

I have had the pleasure of visiting all grades to read the book ‘Little Mouse Wants an Apple’ written by Nakae Yoshio, Illustrated by Ueno Noriko. This book talks about how we can work together to overcome a challenge. The message for students is  to build connectedness that will enable them to aptly deal with difficult situations in their lives both now and in the future. This text provided a platform for discussion linked with the Play is The Way messages. Students brought up the link between the book and the Play is The Way message of “Be brave-participate to progress”,  “Pursue your personal best no matter who you work with” and “Treat others as you would like them to treat you”. Reading this book to students and also discussing the Play is The Way’s posters emphasises that Student Wellbeing is  important at Huntingdale PS



Setsubun literally means “division of seasons”. However, “setsubun” has now come to mean the day before the first day of spring. It usually occurs around February 3rd. On this day, in a custom called mame-maki, people throw and scatter roasted soy beans inside and outside their houses while saying “Get goblins out of the house! Invite happiness into the home!”

Nishikubo sensei taught the song “Oni no pantsu wa ii pantsu!” in music class to Grade 1 students.   Students made an Origami box each and threw beans to Oni (Nishikubo sensei and Japanese volunteer assistants). Students enjoyed the day!


Buddy Sessions

This year we have tried new buddy sessions. Not only between Foundation and Grade 6 students, all students have a buddie class. Here is a snapshot from the buddie session between 3/4P, 2K & 2H. They worked together to find out the commonalities and differences between buddies, then had picnic together. Teachers and students all enjoyed the sessions together.



The term ‘bullying’ is used regularly in the context of schools. Bu​llying is a serious issue for everyone in the school community. It can happen anywhere, anytime, and can have devastating effects.  It is the responsibility of everyone to make a stand and lend a hand to prevent and respond to bullying behaviour.


Bullying is repeated verbal, physical, social or psychological aggressive behaviour by a person or group directed towards a less powerful person or group that is intended to cause harm, distress or fear.


Types of bullying behaviour

There are some specific types of bullying behaviour:

  • verbal or written abuse - such as targeted name-calling or jokes, or displaying offensive posters
  • violence - including threats of violence
  • sexual harassment - unwelcome or unreciprocated conduct of a sexual nature, which could reasonably be expected to cause offence, humiliation or intimidation
  • homophobia and other hostile behaviour towards students relating to gender and sexuality
  • discrimination including racial discrimination - treating people differently because of their identity
  • cyberbullying - either online or via mobile phone.


What is not bullying?

There are also some behaviours, which, although they might be unpleasant or distressing, are not bullying:

  • mutual conflict - which involves a disagreement, but not an imbalance of power. Unresolved mutual conflict can develop into bullying if one of the parties targets the other repeatedly in retaliation.
  • single-episode acts of nastiness or physical aggression, or aggression directed towards many different people, is not bullying
  • social rejection or dislike is not bullying unless it involves deliberate and repeated attempts to cause distress, exclude or create dislike by others

Source- Department of Education and Training- Bully Stoppers

The most important thing we can do is to empower children with what to do if they feel they are being bullied.

As part of our Creating Our Learning Community unit of work students complete the ‘helping hand’ activity. On each finger on the hand, students write a trusted person they can talk to at school if they need to. This hand includes Principal Kate, myself and any other teachers your child identifies with. This may be their Japanese Teacher, a teacher they have had previously or Jenny our Chaplain. Students are also encouraged to think of a helping hand for home. This could include the names of their parents, relatives or family friends that can help your child.

What can you do to support your child if they feel they are being bullied?

  1. Encourage and empower your child to ‘speak up’ about the incidences that have happened.
  2. Go and talk to the classroom teacher- They can be the first ‘port of call’ to investigate. If needed the classroom teacher may ask for support from me as the Assistant Principal to be involved in the investigating process.
  3. Offer your child support- take regular time to talk to them about how school is going and listen to them.
  4. Continue and maintain regular contact with the school- so we are all on the ‘same page’ and are monitoring the situation effectively.
  5. Get extra help if needed-Sometimes children need the support of an independent person such as a counsellor. A range of services are available both internally and externally from the school.
  6. Help your child to ‘move forward’- an important part of the process is to allow your child to reflect on what has happened, talk about it and then have the capacity to move on from the incident, so they can continue to come to school, see their friends and enjoy school life.


The school has a duty of care to assist both the victims and perpetrators of bullying. Often there is an underlying cause for bullying behaviours. Sometimes the perpetrator has been bullied themselves or they are stressed about other aspects of their life. The school uses the ‘Play is the Way’ framework with students and is beginning the process of the 3R’s- reflection, repair and restitution to help empower all children in dealing with difficult situations.


If you have any questions about bullying please come and see me or your child’s teacher.


Student Leadership

Mr Tolliday has started working with our Student Leaders on developing their leadership skills as they grow into their new roles at the school. It will be great to see how they grow as leaders.


Have a great week

Naomi Mori-Hanazono

Assistant Principal

School Council


With four councillors finishing their terms in the 2019 School Council, we have a need for new volunteers from our school community to be involved in providing their thoughts, ideas and energy into the HPS School Council 2020.  I encourage you all to consider being involved in this rewarding experience in making a difference for the children and community at HPS.


Please visit Gill at the office, or contact me on if you are interested in finding out more about what is involved.


What is the School Council?


School Councils play a key role in Victorian government schools.  Any parents of students, and other community members can become School Councillors, alongside the Principal and other DET employees.  Participating as a school council member is a rewarding and challenging experience.  The school council supports the principal to provide the best possible educational outcomes for students.  No prior experience is required, and the strength of the council comes from the diversity in our councillors experiences, skills and cultures.


The School council is involved in functions such as:

  • Financial oversight
  • Strategic planning
  • Policy development
  • Community building
  • Maintenance of school grounds and facilities
  • Representation of school community views
  • And more…


Most of the above is straight from the Department of Education and Training website, and provides a summary of the mechanics of the School Council, but being involved in the School council is about more than the governance. 


To me, It is about sharing your ideas, helping strengthen the school community, and bringing diversity of opinions and experiences into the direction of the school.  Your time really does make a difference!  As the African proverbs goes, It really does take a village to raise a child.


This year is jam-packed full of projects, including the oval construction, the main building replacement, the outdoor learning garden and much more.  We’ll also be undertaking the school’s strategic plan which will set the direction for the next four years, and will continue our lobbying efforts to refresh our masterplan and attract further funding from the state budget in May.


Making a difference

There are many ways to make a difference with your time and expertise at HPS.  The guide below, I hope will help guide you on ways that you can help.


I like to….

Then perhaps volunteer for…

Help build communities…

Contribute to the school direction…

Be involved in strategic planning…

Provide input into the building upgrades…

Help with communicating to the community…

School Council…

Use my hands…

Be with nature…

Build things…

Be in the outdoors…

Cook bbqs...

Sustainability and Grounds Subcommittee

Talk to people…

Help build communities…

Advocate for our school in the community…

Build extra-curricular opportunities…

Help organise the Japan trip…


Community Links Subcommittee

Deal with politics and strategy…

Lobbying the government…

Use my marketing experience…

Promote our Language Lighthouse Initiatives…

Provide input into school policies…


Education and Future Directions Subcommittee

Help strengthen the school community…

Organise community events…

Meet new people…

Cook food and help at stalls…

Help fundraise…

Or just help out here and there…


Watashi Mo (Parents & Friends)

Read with kids (Japanese or English)…

Help with class excursions…

Volunteer to assist my child’s teacher…


Class Volunteer

Please visit Gill at the office to see how you can help, or contact me on if you are interested in finding out more about being involved.



Chris Leffler,

School Council President


When you help your kids ask the right questions, you give them a tool to overcome worry and grow in empathy.


At any one time a child sometimes gets ignored when their older siblings play together and are not inclusive. If you notice this happening, gently challenge the older kids by saying: “What if you were the one being left out? How would that make you feel?”

Instead of merely correcting their behaviour, try to use scenarios to remind them to treat others the way they themselves would want to be treated. “Whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them.”  Tell them stories from your own life when you chose to show empathy. When you have an opportunity to remind them of the joy that comes from turning outward, it helps them make the switch from asking, “What if I don’t get what I want?” to “What if I were in the other person’s shoes?”

The wrong what-ifs

While the right kind of what-ifs can help our kids turn outward and put others first, the wrong kind of what-ifs can turn them inward and paralyse them with worry or fear. If a child continually wonders, ‘What if something bad happens to me?’ they will not be able to thrive in the here and now; they will find it difficult to consider others’ needs above their own because they are too preoccupied with their own worries.

As parents, how can we help our children replace the wrong what-ifs with the right ones? With my kids, I also remind them of their great-grandmother’s secret to conquering the fearful what-ifs: Whenever she was feeling down because of a challenging circumstance, she chose to find someone who was far worse off than she was and serve that person in some practical way. Every time she did this, she discovered the unmatched joy and fulfilment of turning outward.

The best what-ifs

By helping our kids embrace the right kind of what-ifs and resist the wrong ones, we can prevent both worry and selfishness from taking up residence in our children’s hearts and hindering them from the outward-focused life that everybody has the potential to live.




Dates to Remember 

February 2020

Tue 25 - Parents as Partners night - all grades - pm to 8pm

Wed 26 - Parents as Partners night - only grades Found to 2 - 4pm to 6pm

Wed 26 - Foundation online testing. No school for Foundation students

Fri 28 - School  Clean-up Australia Day

March 2020

Fri 6 - Curriculum Day - No students

Mon 9 - Labour Day - Public holiday

Tue 10 - Nihongo Sports Night - Davies Reserve

Fri 20 - South Oakleigh College Cultural event - Junior and Senior Choir and Taiko performing - commencing 5pm

Fri 20 - Grades 5/6 Sports Gala Day 

Mon 23 - No assembly

Fri 27 - Last Day of Term 1 - 2.30 pm dismissal - 1.55pm Assembly

April 2020

Tue 14 - First Day of Term 2 

Wed 15 - Fri 17 - Grade 3 to 6 Camp

Term Dates 2020

Term 1: 28 January (teachers start) to 27 March * 
Term 2: 14 April to 26 June 
Term 3: 13 July to 18 September 
Term 4: 5 October to 18 December

Click here to see Term Dates up to 2025



Huntingdale Primary School
Emperor Speach.pdf
Consul General Speach.pdf
Invitation Letter - For Parents March 2019.pdf