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21 March 2018
Issue Seven
Principal's Message
Assistant Principal
Religious Education
School Chaplain/Mini Vinnies
Community News
St Thomas More's Primary School
(02) 6249 8869
24 White Crescent
Campbell, Australian Capital Territory, 2612

Principal's Message

Dear Parents and Carers,

This year I have invested both professionally and financially in a focus on student outcomes and engagement. This is something that has formed part of our Improvement Plan for 2018. Our aim is to oversee student engagement and increase student outcomes for all. I believe one of the strengths here at STM is the academic rigour that teaching staff expect of their students, and of themselves.


Mrs Sharon Melhuish and Mrs Pam Sixsmith are working closely with students and teachers to achieve the aforementioned goal. Collaborative planning is occurring amongst teachers to implement and monitor interventions for students; learning conversations are an important part of what we do to ensure we are differentiating and catering for individual needs. As you could appreciate, there are MANY different abilities in our classrooms; the task of catering for all needs is impressive, but one our teachers value and are willing to dedicate their own time to the process.


At STM, we cater for students who not only find concepts difficult, but also those who need to be extended and challenged in their learning. Each year we offer enrichment classes for students in Yr. 3 to 6 who are operating approximately 2 years, or more, above their age (this is based on school and national data). Sharon and Pam will take up this role next term, as well as continuing their work with students at all levels. If your child qualifies for the Enrichment Class, you will receive a letter at the end of this term.



Making sense of children’s emotions

Children’s emotions may be more complex that they appear. Learning to manage feelings and emotions is a very important part of children’s development. Emotions affect children’s ability to learn and relate to others, as well as their overall wellbeing.

How can parents and carers help?

  • Tune into children’s feelings and try to understand things from their point of view
  • Show that you accept and respect children’s feelings
  • Remember that it’s not always easy for children to know what is bothering them, and that they may not want to talk about it
  • Show children how you manage your feelings effectively. If you act calmly it will help to reassure them that they can manage difficult feelings.
  • Acknowledge children’s efforts to manage feelings

National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence

Last Friday we joined with many other school communities around Australia to highlight the issues around bullying and violence. The National Day was a positive day of action, bringing school communities together to help find workable solutions that address bullying and violence.

NAPLAN Practice Test

Tomorrow our Yr. 3 and Yr. 5 students will participate in a NAPLAN Practice test, as part of a readiness activity. Participation will provide students with another opportunity to become familiar with the types of questions they will encounter with NAPLAN Online.


School Registration

Next week our school is under review for re-registration and accreditation; this occurs every 5 years. (We will welcome a panel of six members to our school). I am looking forward to the process and the opportunity to highlight and celebrate the wonderful teaching and learning that’s happening in our school. The registration process is also another avenue to receive feedback on the areas that will assist in the future direction of our school.


Yours sincerely,








Julie Wiley




A Message from the Chair of the STM Council

The STM Council had its first meeting for the year in Week 3 and I took on the role of Chair – a hard act to follow after Genevieve Cuddihy passed on the baton following a 6-year term on the Council, including 2 years as Chair.


The STM Council is made up of 3 teaching staff including the Principal and Assistant Principal, a number of parent representatives and the Parish Priest/s. The Principal has responsibility for the day-to-day management of the school and is supported by the work of the Council which brings in these other voices as part of the leadership to the wider school community. 


Meetings are held in Week 3 and 8 each term. If you ever want to express interest in joining the Council as a parent, the door is always open!


I look forward to serving the School in the role of Chair and see the role as bringing the views of parents and teaching staff together and building up the sense of community we have at this School.


The STM Council has an email address – your thoughts and feedback on any issues are always welcome. In particular, the Council is always keen to hear from parents about how fundraising money can be best utilised to support students at School and support our families. That email address is: [email protected].  

One of the roles of the Council is to promote the School in the local community. I think STM is one of Canberra’s best kept secrets, but a bit of promotion is good, and the best promotion is word of mouth. With enrolment time coming up for 2019, it is a great time to tell friends and colleagues about the school and what it has to offer.


I am often at the School at drop-off or pick-up, so please feel free anytime to have a chat. If you don’t know me already, your children might know my children (Gabrielle, Leah and Dominic Shoebridge; Years 6, 3 and 3).








Margaret Deerain 

(Shoebridge Family)



Assistant Principal

 School Expectations

At St Thomas More’s we Respect More, Think More and Encourage More.

 When we Respect More we respect ourselves, others and property. We play fair, safely and wear a hat. We include others and listen to one another.

When we Think More we make wise choices, be a learner and tell the truth. We take responsibility for our actions.



 When we Encourage More we praise others and take pride in ourselves, our work and the way we interact with others. We strive for excellence, are welcoming and act with compassion.

This term we are recognising students as they demonstrate these school expectations. The children collect coupons and place them in a ballot box.


On Friday at our awards assembly, we had our first draw.

Congratulations Thomas, Ava and Patrick. We acknowledge all of our students who had coupons in the raffle.

We look forward to our next draw and giving out more coupons!!


Nicole Mikkonen

Assistant Principal.

Cross Country

Our school Cross Country will be held on Wednesday April 11 at 9 am. We would love some helpers to be stationed on our course to assist our athletes.

If you can help, please contact Nicole Mikkonen or fill in the note that is going home today.

We are unable to run this event without the fabulous support of our parent volunteers.


In appreciation,


Nicole Mikkonen

Assistant Principal.

Religious Education

Heroes of Faith


Welcome to Sabbath Week! This week is an important time at St Thomas More’s School as it reminds each of us to slow down, reconnect with our family and importantly, spend time in prayer. It is also a time to be grateful for the simple things in life.

One way of showing gratitude is to be mindful of how fortunate we are to live in a land of opportunity, where we have access to basic needs such as food, water and electricity. Caritas Australia’s Lenten fundraiser ~ Project Compassion, is working towards providing these resources to many people who live below the poverty line, including people within Australia.


The theme for 2018 Project Compassion is ~ For a Just Future.

This term, our school Payer theme is ‘Act Justly’ and one way we could all do this is through donating to Project Compassion.


It is very heartwarming to hear students tell me how they have been busy doing extra chores or saving money on treats and placing their money into their project Compassion box. What a wonderful generation of young people we have who can see the importance of reaching out to those less fortunate and acting justly towards others ~ they are real ‘Heroes of Faith’.


Project Compassion boxes will be collected at the end of Term 1.


I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Happy Easter and may you all enjoy your time with loved ones over the Easter break.


Donna Victory

Religious Education Coordinator



ANZAC  Day Liturgy


Date for your diary – Friday, 13 April 2018 (Week 10) - Anzac Day Liturgy

St Thomas More's Anzac Day Liturgy will be held Friday, 13 April 2018 (Week 10) commencing 9am in Holy Faith Hall. Parents are warmly invited to attend and commemorate this special Centenary Year.


Monday Craft

Monday Craft with both 3/4 Classes in the past two weeks has been very enjoyable – what inventiveness and good humour we have at St Thomas More’s!

Deployment Groups

We have a Deployment Group for older children on Tuesday at lunchtime and another Deployment Group for younger children on Wednesday at lunchtime. Please let me know if your family has a Defence parent away (whether it be deployment, course or exercise) and your child would like to attend the Deployment Group.


Soldier on 

What  Come & Try Dragon Boating

When  Saturday 7 April 2018, 9am-12pm

Where  Lotus Bay, 1 Mariner Place, YARRALUMLA

RSVP For further information and to register your interest please email [email protected]

Info  Purple Warriors Australia (PWAUS) is a new dragon boat club solely for serving and retired ADF personnel who are wounded, injured or ill. Dragon boating is about cooperation, teamwork and fun.

What  Family Sailing Day

When  Saturday 7 April 2018, 1-3pm

Where  Lotus Bay, 1 Mariner Place, YARRALUMLA

RSVP For further information and to register your interest please email [email protected]

Info  This is a FREE activity for Soldier On participants and their families (including current & ex-service personnel). Minimum age for children is 7 years.


Feel welcome to visit or contact me on 6249 8869 or send an email to [email protected] .



Sonja Mingay DSTA

Work hours: Mon-Wed 9am-3pm, Thu 9-11am

School Chaplain/Mini Vinnies

Mini Vinnies

Mini Vinnies have been working hard during recess times this week to complete posters displaying the symbols of three certification bodies in Australia:  Fairtrade, UTZ Certified and Rainforest Alliance. When you see any of these symbols on a chocolate bar it means the that the cocoa beans used in the production of the bar have been ethically sourced from farmers engaging in good labour practices and sustainable farming methods.



Our next Mini Vinnies meeting will be Friday, 23 March (Week 7) to plan how to teach the school community about the symbols.


Fairtrade Easter Egg Raffle

Thank you so much for the donations towards the Fairtrade Easter Egg Raffle. Raffle tickets will be sold before and after school on the playground in Week 8 (1 ticket for 50cents or 3 tickets for a dollar). The raffle will be drawn at Morning Assembly on Thursday 29 March.


The aim of our Mini Vinnies Fairtrade Easter Egg Raffle is to raise awareness of the global social justice issue of child labour and slavery in the chocolate industry, particularly in West Africa where the majority of the world’s cocoa production occurs. It is very sad to think that child exploitation has occurred in the production of the Easter Eggs we are enjoying.


Stop the Traffik Australia and Baptist World Aid Australia have produced an excellent report on this topic titled ‘A Matter of Taste’ which can be viewed at


A guide listing Easter Eggs that are free from trafficked labour is at . It includes:

  • Aldi's UTZ Certified Dairy Fine, Choceur, Moser Roth and Specially Selected Easter chocolate ranges.
  • Chocolatier Australia's Fairtrade milk and dark chocolate 100g eggs, available through Coles, Woolworths, David Jones and other chocolate suppliers.
  • Coles also has a range of branded UTZ, Fairtrade and Rainforest Alliance-certified Easter chocolates.
  • The Haigh's Chocolate-made Easter egg range is UTZ Certified.
  • Devine chocolate eggs and bunnies are Fairtrade certified, and are available through IGA, other selected stores and online. 

What can we do?

  • Choose chocolate with Fairtrade, UTZ or Rainforest Alliance certification.
  • Advocate by writing letters to:
    -  chocolate producers requesting they work towards 100% ethically sourced cocoa. (Worthy of mention is Nestle, the first company in Australia to achieve 100% ethically sourced cocoa for their chocolate bar range).
    - retailers requesting they stock 100% certified chocolate. (Aldi and Haighs entire Easter Egg range are certified against human trafficking).


Feel welcome to visit or contact me on 6249 8869 or send an email to [email protected] .


Sonja Mingay
School Chaplain

Work hours: Thu 11am-3pm, Fri 9am-3pm



Catholic Schools Soccer Carnival


Community News

Bach’s St Matthew Passion at St Christopher’s Cathedral.​ 

This coming Saturday, Andrew Koll (our school flute and piano teacher) will be conducting Bach’s St Matthew Passion at St Christopher’s Cathedral. This is a wonderful opportunity to hear a musical masterpiece. Two orchestras, a choir of 80 (Canberra Choral Society) and superb soloists. Tickets are available from


School banking redemption day tomorrow morning 8.15am 


Book club


St Clare's College Enrolment 


More News
SO-ActivitiesPoster-Dragon Boating.pdf
SO-ActivitiesPoster-Dragon Boating.pdf
SO-ActivitiesPoster-Dragon Boating.pdf
SO-ActivitiesPoster-A4-sailing doc 1 (3).pdf
SO-ActivitiesPoster-Dragon Boating.pdf
SO-ActivitiesPoster-A4-sailing doc 1 (3).pdf