1 September 2016

Newsletter 15/2016

Principal’s Report

Morning Tea with the Principal
Over these last two weeks I have enjoyed the pleasure of the company of:
  • Holly 1O;  Sammy 1O;  Ryan PB; Dexter 1O;  Bam 2P; Callum 5/6R
  • Lee 1A;  Molly 1A;  Amy 1A;  Josh 4W;  Holly 4W;  Lauren 5/6R
Thank you very much to these students for the delightful conversations and laughs during this time!
Building Works Update
You may have seen our Facebook page posts this past week that showed our buildings works have finally begun! Whilst the planning process seemed to take forever for some of us, now that the time has come, it certainly does not take builders long to knock out a few walls! In response to our Facebook posts, members of our community asked a couple of questions that I thought I would answer within this newsletter as I am sure many more parents have been wondering similar things:
Question: What building works is actually being conducted?
Answer: The main building housed the grade 3 and 4 classrooms. These 4 classrooms are being gutted (as pictured on the Facebook page), and re-designed into a new open learning classroom environment that the grade 3 and 4 classes will move back into on completion. Brand new student toilets are being developed near this new learning area (almost opposite the principal office), which will mean that the 3/4 children will be able to access student toilets without going outside to the toilet (much like the BER senior building; within the space, but not ‘in’ the space).
New student toilets are also being created for the junior students, also allowing inside building access (utilising some of the PE storage room, meaning they will be near the Kids Café). Brand new outside access toilets are being developed as well (you may recall that the current student toilet block is going to be demolished). The student toilets (not in use at this time) near the hall are also being completely gutted and redeveloped into new male and female student toilets.
The staff toilet is also going to be redeveloped to allow for several unisex staff toilets.
The ‘reading pit (hole)’ area in between the prep rooms is going to be ‘filled’ in due to the OHS concern it presents. This will also mean that this center area will be able to be developed in the future into a more user-friendly learning space between the prep classrooms.
Question: What about asbestos removal?
Answer: Asbestos removal was completed before the works began on a weekend. Clearance of air monitoring is mandated as a part of asbestos removal. The school sited air clearance certificates on the weekend of removal to ensure the school was safe for students, parents and staff to enter on the Monday morning.
Acacia Kindergarten Redevelopment Update
I understand from listening to parents and through parent feedback that the proposal for redeveloping Acacia Kindergarten on Mentone Park PS site may have come as a surprise to members of our community. Certainly I would like to ensure that the process of the possible kinder redevelopment is transparent to our community from here forward.
Kingston City Council as governing body over local preschools is waiting on approval for a grant submission they have forwarded to the government. This grant would fund a large sum of the capital required for this venture, the remaining funds they would self-fund. If Kingston City Council are unsuccessful in their application, we are led to believe the venture would not move forward at this time.
Kingston City Council believe the timeline for the funding outcome will be much closer to the end of this year. At this stage there has been an initial conversation with Kingston City Council, Acacia Kindergarten committee, the Department of Education and Training (as owners of MPPS land), and the school of where a possible site location of the redevelopment on MPPS might be. There has been much to consider, including safety of preschool children, school children and parents; car access and parking possibilities; frontage and identity as Acacia Kinder; school ground space and future space requirements of the school, amongst many other considerations. There has also been initial discussions around the benefits of this venture for MPPS, including establishment of a possible consistent prep enrolment; buddy and leadership role possibilities for our students; joint community ventures to strengthen our student’s connectedness to MPPS; utilising each educational setting’s expertise in order to strengthen and broaden the educational opportunities for all of our students. At this stage 4 possible site options on MPPS have been initially discussed. If successful in the grant submission, the next stage will be consulting with all key stakeholders, including our parent community, on the possibilities of the best site location for our school and also for Acacia kinder.
I will include more information in upcoming newsletters as we receive it at school. If you have any further questions at all please do not hesitate in contacting me through our school office. Thank you.
Father’s Day Breakfast & Stall
We had many fathers and grandfathers able to make our Father’s Day Breakfast this morning which was terrific to see and be a part of! The Kids Café was certainly very busy! And it was also terrific to see so many Dads outside before the bell playing ball games on the basketball court with their children as well – what a fabulous atmosphere and start to our day here today! Many thanks to all of our helpers this morning that made for such a special morning for our students and their fathers and ‘important males’.
A very special thank you to our amazing PFA parents as well who also spent the time at school today helping out with our Father’s Day Stall enabling our students to purchase something special for their Dads!
We are very lucky to have the parent support that we do here at Mentone Park!
Prep Enrolments for 2017
Just a reminder that if you have a child starting prep next year in 2017 to please ensure you have their enrolment forms in at the office. Having all possible prep enrolments in at this time of the year is very important to schools as we begin our class structures and staff planning conversations. Knowing our expected prep enrolments at this time of the year assists us greatly in this long process. Thank you very much in advance.

Warm Regards

Renée Kennedy




Saturday 3rd September, 10am – 2pm

Only 2 more sleeps until our working bee! Thank you to those who have already indicated their intention to attend. If you have not yet let me know that you are coming, please do so via the form sent out on tiqbiz or just email me at mentone.park.ps@edumail.vic.gov.au. 

Surely there couldn’t possibly be anything more fun that getting together with like-minded community members for a common purpose – that is, beautifying the grounds of the school where our kids spend 5 days a week!  Don’t forget there will be a prize draw at assembly with all adults in attendance in the draw.

A sausage sizzle, snacks and drinks will be provided for all participants.  According to my weather apps, there is a 50% chance of showers, but I’m determined not to let it dampen our spirits! None-the-less if it is too wet, I will send out a tiqbiz notification to inform people early as to whether we need to reschedule.

 The focus of work for the day will be:
  • Weeding, pruning and general tidying of garden beds.
  • Trimming back hedges and trees around the senior playground area
  • Raking the soft-fall around the equipment in the senior and junior playgrounds
  • Spreading mulch
  • Scooping leaves and debris out of gutters and drains
  • General tidying of school grounds

Hope to see you there!

Health and Wellbeing – Self-Esteem

2 newsletter issues ago, I talked about self-esteem – what it is and the importance of building self-esteem. So how do we know if someone has low self-esteem? It’s important to be able to recognise the signs within ourselves and then we can assist others in building their self-esteem also.  

The following are excerpts from the Reachout.com website. Reach Out is Australia’s leading online mental health organisation for young people, providing practical support to help them get through everything from everyday issues to tough times. Click here to view the Reach Out website where you can find links and resources.    http://about.au.reachout.com/what-we-do/

Signs of low self-esteem

It’s totally normal for people to feel down about themselves from time to time, but when these feelings start to hang around all the time it’s usually an indication of low self-esteem. If you have low self-esteem it means that you have negative ideas about your worth and value as a person. There are various signs of low self-esteem, including:
  • Being really critical of yourself
  • Focusing on the negatives and ignoring your accomplishments
  • Comparing yourself to others
  • Not accepting any compliments that you receive
  • Negative self-talk

Causes of low self-esteem

The first step to building up self-esteem is figuring out why it’s low in the first place. There are lots of different things that could be the cause of low self-esteem, including:
  • Loneliness
  • Poor academic performance
  • Bullying
  • Neglect
  • Abuse
  • Feeling like you’re the odd one out
  • Being unemployed
  • Something going on at a deeper level
Sometimes it can be hard to identify what the cause of your low self-esteem is. It might be something that you’ve never really thought about, or maybe it’s too difficult to determine when it first started. Whether or not you know exactly what the cause is, there are steps that you can take to build your confidence and bring your self-esteem up to where it belongs. 

Steps to improve low self-esteem


1. Positive self-talk
The way that you think about yourself has a huge influence on your self-esteem. If you keep telling yourself that you’re no good, you might just start to believe it even though it’s not true. If you notice that you practise negative self-talk often, find some ways that you can challenge your negative thinking and build your confidence levels.
2. Don’t compare yourself to others
It can be really tempting to measure our own worth against other people. So what if your friend is awesome at table tennis and gets great marks? You just need to figure out what your niche is. Everyone is great at something - what are your strengths?
3. Exercise
Exercise helps to improve your mood! Simple!
4. Don’t strive for perfection
It’s really great if you want to do things well, but keep in mind that perfection isn’t possible!
5. Don’t beat yourself up when you make a mistake
Everyone on the planet makes mistakes - it’s in our basic human nature. Why should you be any different? When you muck something up, don’t stress, just learn from it and move on. 
6. Focus on the things you can change
There’s no point wasting all your energy thinking about things that you can’t change. Why don’t you have a think about some of the things that are in your power to control and see what you can do about those?
7. Do things that you enjoy
If you’re doing things that you enjoy you’re more likely to be thinking positively. Schedule time for fun and relaxation into every day.
8. Celebrate the small stuff
Start small and work your way up – you can’t expect any huge progress to be made overnight. 
9. Be helpful and considerate
Not only is helping people a great way to boost the moods of others, but you might find that you feel better about yourself after doing something particularly thoughtful.
10. Surround yourself with supportive people
Don’t hang around people who bring you down. Find a group of people who make you feel good about yourself and avoid those who tend to trigger your negative thinking. 


Term 3, Week 8


Congratulations to Maria and her brilliant band on their first performance at last week's assembly! Your rendition of Rip Tide was amazing and we cannot wait for your next performance! WOW!!

Alison Lough

Assistant Principal


Bunnings Thank You

WOW!!!   What an extremely busy day we had
A big ‘Thank You’ to the volunteers that kindly gave up their time on Saturday to come and help at our Bunning’s Sausage Sizzle on Saturday 20th August 2016:  Stacey Buchanan, Andrew, Wendy & Lachlan Davis, Jenny Olechnowicz, Andrew Curtis, Tiffany Corbin, Renée Kennedy, Libby Buchanan, Mathew Killmister, Ange Hately, Lucy Robertson, Monica Jean, Tara Shepherd, Philippa Penson, Greg Noble & Chris Costello.
A BIG ‘Thank You’ to Baker’s Delight at Thrift Park who kindly donated the bread and Stacey Buchanan who organised the drinks and sauce to be donated.
Thank you to Anne Leggett for purchasing our requirements for the day and for calling in during the day and taking some of the children to the playground and supervising whilst the adults cooked more and more sausages. All of which was very much appreciated!
To the children that did a wonderful job helping on the day – Molly B, Jack & Mitchell D, Abbey & Chloe P-N, Hannah C & Tom B.  You were all amazing and a wonderful help.
To the families and friends that came down to Bunnings and purchased a sausage (or two) and a drink, thank you for your support.
Total Profit Raised:   $2,635.23


Fathers Day Breakfast

Thank you to the following wonderful parents, siblings and teachers who helped this morning to make the Fathers Day Breakfast a huge success!
Cheryl Nancarrow, Christine Graham, Anna Buist, Melinda Van Cuylenberg, Jodi O'Sullivan, Tiffany Corbin, Beck Hitchcock, Andrew, Wendy & Lachlan Davis, Lisa Grimsey, Lucy Barclay, Jenny Olechnowicz, Fiona Nobes, Stacey Buchanan, Noela Unwin & Justine Arentz.

Fathers Day Stall

A huge thank you to  Vicki Limnios who co-ordinated the Fathers Day Stall  and to the wonderful parents who helped today running the stall. 
Georgie, Mel Van Cuylenberg, Jo Gray, Tatiana, Stacey Buchanan, Kym Pike, Kate Solomon, Kim Foale, Wendy Davis, Cheryl Nancarrow, Megan Marshall & Amy Tonkin.


Reminder to return all raffle ticket money, tickets and unsold tickets to the office by Wednesday 7th September.


This week at OSHC we have enjoyed free play.
We are looking forward to vacation care and the fun that it will bring. If you haven’t booked your child/ren in, please book in as soon as possible the details are on our YLV website or come in and grab a copy from Anicca.
Cassandra has joined the team and will be helping out on casual bases. Please make her feel welcome.  Spring is around the corner and what a wonderful season we will have. We are enjoying our week and hope you are too.
Stay warm from the OSHC Team



Dear Parents,

Below is the class roster for the rest of the school year.
Please click here to volunteer for any of the dates below.


The Kids’ Cafe Team

Term 3

Sept 2nd 3S
9th closed - Footy Day
16th cleaning - all welcome

Term 4

Oct 7th 3G
14th 4H
21st 4W
28th 5/6L
Nov 4th 5/6R
11th 5/6S
18th all Preps & Grade 1
25th all grades 2 & 3

Dec 2nd all Grades 4, 5 & 6
9th cleaning - all welcome

Working With Children Check Reminder

All parents/guardians, visitors & volunteers to the school MUST sign in & out of the school and display their WWCC in a lanyard, which is available at the school office.

The Department of Education requires any person involved in an activity where children may be present to have a current WWCC or have supplied proof that they have applied for a WWCC with the Department of Justice. All schools are required to comply with the Working with Children Act 2005.

Volunteers are expected to carry the WWCC card on their person at all times when working or volunteering at the school or during school related activities.

There is no fee for this check. Apply now by visiting:


The Department of Education & Early Childhood Development and Mentone Park Primary School do not endorse the products or services of any private advertiser. They accept no responsibility for accuracy of information contained in advertisements or claims made by them.

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