OGPS Newsletter

19 March 2020
Issue Four
Key Dates
Principal's Message
Principal Awards
Whole School News
Artists in the Spotlight
Green Team
Fundraising News
Canteen/Uniform Shop News
Orchard Grove Primary School
(03) 9894 3400
101 Orchard Grove
Blackburn South, Victoria, 3130

Key Dates


Friday 20th March

Canteen open

No Assembly


Thursday 26th March

3 Way student/parent/teacher conferences (postponed)

Normal school day for students


Friday 27th March

Last day Term 1 - 2.30pm dismissal

Ride2School day

No assembly

Oli's Free Dress Day (gold coin donation)


Tuesday 14th April

Term 2 starts


Friday 17th April

School photos

Assembly 2.40pm 


Friday 24th April

Assembly 2.40pm 


Friday 1st May

Assembly 2.40pm


Saturday 2nd May

Working bee 9-12


Sunday 10th May

Mother’s Day


2020 Term Dates

Term 1   30th January – 27th March

Term 2   14th April – 26th June

Term 3   13th July – 18th September

Term 4   5th October – 18th December

2020 Camp Dates

Year 3       12th – 14th August

Year 4       13th – 15th May

Year 5       1st – 5th June

Year 6       date to be advised

2020 Working Bee Dates

Term 2     Saturday 2nd May  - 9.00am - 12.00pm

Term 3     Sunday 2nd August  - 9.00am - 12.00pm

Term 4     Saturday 24th October  - 9.00am - 12.00pm

Principal's Message

School Philosophy

Orchard Grove Primary School is committed to providing a safe, nurturing environment that engages curiosity, promotes learning, personal growth and wellbeing for all students. We strive to develop adaptability and resilience so students can become valued members of the local and global communities and be prepared for future life experiences.

From the Principal

Hi everyone,

Well, we are definitely living in interesting times and it is a stressful period for everyone but, here at school, we are all doing well. I would like to thank our community for your emails, texts and messages of support for the way OGPS has been handling the COVID-19 crisis. I realise that we have been bombarding you through Compass with alerts to explain what measures we are putting in place and any news we may have to share with you, however, the feedback has been that you have appreciated the level of communication. 

Yesterday, I sent you a link to a YouTube clip by Dr Peter Lin, who I think has done a great job in explaining about the virus, its behaviour, how it spreads and what we can do to minimise this.  I hope you have found it helpful; if you haven't watched it yet, I would encourage you to do so.

Hand Sanitizer

At the moment we do have enough hand sanitiser, however, if the school remains open, we will run out and we are finding it difficult to source the amount of sanitiser that we need. If you have any that you would be prepared to donate to your child's classroom it would be gratefully received.  We are aware that soap and water are the best and most effective way of removing germs and viruses, however, sanitiser, particularly in the classroom, can be very helpful too. At the moment we have it on backorder with a number of suppliers, but they can't tell us when they will be able to fill our order, so donations would be fantastic.

We do have many families that have decided to keep their children at home during this period and we totally understand and support their decision. If this applies to your family, when logging your child's absence on Compass, please put the absence as 'Parent Choice' then, in the description box, put COVID-19.

At school, it is still business as usual and normal classroom programs are continuing. In the event of a Government decision to close schools, we will be providing work for your children to do while they are at home. We would encourage you to think of a way you can provide a quiet study space at home for your child in the event of a school closure and have a schedule for your child to follow each day to make sure the work is completed. Our staff are currently preparing and working behind the scenes to ensure that we provide a variety of learning options that the children will be able to access at home.

Three-Way Conference

Three-Way Conferences scheduled for next Thursday 26th March have been postponed to a date yet to be decided. If the schools are still open, next Thursday will revert to a normal school day and we will have early dismissal at 2:30 pm on Friday 27th March.

Channel 9 Today Show

On a much happier note, last week, on Wednesday, we had a visit from a film crew with the Today Show that came to do a story about Ruby, our school dog.  They have been interested in Ruby, as our dog program is very different to most.  Usually, therapy/assistant dogs in schools are attached to one carer or visitor and stay with that person, and the dog is not generally accessible for all students. I describe Ruby as a bit like a free-range chicken; a FRED dog - free range educational dog. Even though I am her main carer, Ruby is timetabled into classes and whoever is the adult in the room becomes her carer for that time. This makes her very accessible to the students and allows her to connect and bond with all students, and she has become 'one of us'.

In this way, Ruby has quite an impact on students, whether it be for a child with anxiety, on the spectrum, one who needs a friend or someone to read to, or just because she loves and accepts everybody and is therapeutic for us all.  Being at OGPS is just Ruby's way of life; she has now been at the school for eight years and does not enjoy being left at home. Holidays are particularly difficult for her as she misses the kids terribly. 

The film crew stayed for nearly four hours, following Ruby into different rooms, talking to kids and staff, and generally filming her in action. It was a lot of fun and they certainly have lots of material to edit.  We haven't been told when the story will be aired, but they will inform us when they know. As it is a 'good news' story, they could run it at any time over the next few months, but we will be sure to let you know so you can watch or record the show.  Having the Channel 9 crew here certainly was a fabulous distraction and brought us a little bit of joy last Wednesday in the middle of a very confusing time. We will look forward to seeing the segment sometime soon.

Curriculum Day

Curriculum Day on 14th April has also been postponed to a date yet to be decided. We were joining with five other schools to have professional learning day with Di Siemon, who is an outstanding maths educator.  Given the ruling around the banning of large groups of people, it is necessary that we cancel the professional development and reschedule it for later in the year. If the school is open for the first week back of term, then April 14th will return to a normal school day for students.

Well, we are definitely heading into uncertain times and we will continue to keep you informed along the way as to what is happening at a school level. Our community is strong and, together, we can ride this out as we continue to support one another. While we have your children in our care, we will continue to reinforce good hygiene habits and keep the children as calm as we can. School is a good distraction and to keep life as normal as possible for the children will help with their anxiety.


Take care everyone and talk soon.

Glenda Harry



Principal Awards

6th March

























































13th March




































Whole School News

Forms/Payments Due

- Easter raffle tickets - due 23rd March

- Hot Cross Bun orders - due 20th March

Message from Sophie Polites

Well, after six and a half years of having the position of Canteen Manager at OGPS, it’s time for me to hang up my apron and follow a new journey with a new career. It’s certainly a very exciting time for me, but of course comes with some sadness in having to leave our wonderful school community, which has become a big part of my life.

It’s been a pleasure providing healthy lunches to all the students over the years, and getting to know them all, and of course the parents who have assisted me in providing lunches. I’ve met some wonderful parents in my time, and will always be grateful to them for their help, support and the many funny, enjoyable moments we have shared. My heartfelt thanks to all of you, and it was a pleasure to meet you all.

I’d like to thank Ms Harry and the teaching staff for all their support and especially the admin team who supported, guided and assisted me 3 days a week, and especially with the organisation of special events, such as, Sushi Day and Pie Day. These special lunch days were enormously successful, and involved many hours of administration, so the assistance was greatly appreciated.

I hope your new Canteen Manager, Huar, is welcomed with open arms, and has the support and assistance that she will require to operate the canteen, and I wish her all the very best for her new role.

To all the students, I wish you all the best for your Primary School and future lives. You are given a wonderful opportunity to learn, so make the most of it, by working towards your goals and aspirations, with much enjoyment along the way. Dare to Dream, and believe that you are capable of anything with persistence and hard work, because dreams do come true !

With incredibly mixed emotions, I bid you all farewell.  Stay happy, safe and healthy always.

I will miss you all.


Artists in the Spotlight

Welcome to the new corner of the newsletter, 'Artists in the Spotlight'. On the display board near the office and staffroom, there is a new display dedicated to celebrating the incredible artists we have at OGPS. This display will showcase the artists that have demonstrated attention to detail, dedication, enthusiasm and willingness to try new things when they visit the art room. 




Our first artists in the spotlight are Lucca 2CB, Joshua 2CB and Armaan 2TK for their use of line, shape and colour to portray emotion in their artwork. Can you guess which emotion they were portraying? 




Make sure you keep your eyes open for this display and check out the rest of the artwork examples around the school.


Stay ARTrageous everyone, Mrs Syme.

Green Team

This week, Green Team did an activity where we used fruit and vegetable scraps to make garlands of food for the school chickens. This was a great way to show the students how we can use food scraps instead of putting them in landfill. As a bonus, the chickens enjoyed their treat!



These students meet every Monday lunchtime. It is so lovely to have a group of kids who are dedicated to making our school and our environment a cleaner place!

Fundraising News

Easter Raffle

Raffle tickets for the Easter Raffle are due back Monday 23rd March. 

For now, winners will be announced on Friday 27th March and prizes will be sent home with students.


We are asking families to donate items that we can put together in hampers or use as prizes in our Easter Raffle.

Donations can be left in the box at the school office until Tuesday 24th March.

Thank you for all your support.

Entertainment Books

Canteen/Uniform Shop News


Canteen is not open on the first day and last day of each term.


Canteen is only open on Wednesdays and Fridays in Term 3 & 4. 


Canteen Menu 

We will provide the new menu as soon as it is available.


The Uniform Shop is open Thursday mornings from 9:00am - 9:30pm.  

Uniform orders can also be placed at the school office and they will be processed and sent home with students on Thursdays.

Uniform Order Form


School holidays are just around the corner. Our partner, TeamKids have a wonderful mix of excursions, incursions and in-house days planned that promise to keep the kids happy, engaged and having fun. Download the Autumn Program here.







OGPS Newsletter
Canteen Summer Menu 2019.pdf
2019 Uniform Price List May.pdf
Orchard Grove Primary.pdf