Welcome to week 6 and 7
I hope that your long weekend was filled with great activities with your family and friends. I know that some days off for our staff were very welcomed in yet another busy term. Our teaching staff are immersed in report writing at present and are putting in lots of extra hours to ensure that the formal reporting requirements are met for the end of semester 2. We thank everyone for the efforts of Walktober and joining us for breakfast on Friday morning.
We welcomed our new Preps on Wednesday. The Prep space was alive with wonder and everyone was brimming with excitement. I loved being in the space to meet everyone and welcome them to our beautiful school. As you can see Xavier, Steveland and Scarlett were all smiles and busy as bees.
At this time there is a lot of work going into ensuring adequate staffing for 2020. As our enrolments continue to decrease each year, this has an impact on funding and staffing. Thankfully we have 38 Preps enrolled for 2020 which is the same number of Preps we welcomed for 2019. With 56 Year 6's leaving this means we drop down again.
We will always continue to ensure the best teacher to student ratios and expert educators. As far as we can tell, the decrease in enrolments in the area is due to the changing demographics of Noble Park and surrounding areas, growth in house prices and affordability of a new home with many families taking the opportunity to build and move out to growth corridors such as Cranbourne, Clyde and Narre Warren. This of course means that schools in those areas are growing and schools in areas such as Noble Park are shrinking. Catholic Education Melbourne are working with all schools to try and implement measures to ensure enrolments are maintained.
I would like to take this opportunity to farewell several staff members who will not be returning in 2020 and many who will be taking up new opportunities. We farewell Miss Ellen Fitzgerald who has been on extended leave this year. Ellen is travelling and living abroad and will continue to do so in 2020. We farewell and thank Miss Marnie Newbound, who has been with us for the past 18 months and has been an important part of the 5/6 learning spaces. Marnie takes up another teaching role at Holy Family Doveton and we know she will be a great asset as she nurtures relationships with her learners so beautifully. To Sue Brown, our Home and School Liaison who has forged significant partnerships and opportunities over the past 9 years in collaboration with our SMAG schools and become a very valued and respected member of staff at St Anthony's, St Gerard's and St Mary's. Sue cannot be replaced and Sue's passion and expertise in the area of family engagement has enriched our school community and enabled many opportunities for staff, families and students in multiple ways. We wish Sue all the very best and we will miss her greatly. Mrs Kirsty Platon begins her Maternity leave at the end of the year and for the duration of 2020. We hope to see Kirsty again in 2021. We wish all of these wonderful people much happiness in their future endeavors and thank them for being an important part of the St Anthony's community.
Enjoy the next couple of weeks and we journey closer to Advent. Please go gently as the end of year can bring anxiety and worry with the transition to new schools, levels and new challenges. It is a time to look after each other more carefully and mindfully.
As always if you have any feedback, ideas or you need any assistance at all, you are always most welcome to see me, Mr James Gow, Mrs Glennis Kerr or any member of the wider school leadership team.