Principal's Blog Principal's Blog

Before And After School Arrangements

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Parents and caregivers are reminded that there are before and after school arrangements with which we must comply to ensure the safety of our whole school community each day. At Grace, we are blessed to have a fantastic Out of School Hours Care Facility which operates from 6:30am - 8:30am in the morning and from 3:00pm – 6:00pm in the afternoon. If you know your children are going to be unsupervised before 8:00am or after 3:20pm, I urge you to enrol your children in this facility to ensure their safe care.  ...Read More


THOUGHTS ON EDUCATION...

Thursday, July 26, 2018

One of the roles I hold is the Independent Schools’ Representative for Queensland on the Australian Primary Principals’ Association. This association has representation from the State, Catholic and Independent Sector in every state and we meet every 12 weeks to discuss issues from a federal perspective in relation to Australian Primary Schools. Issues which come up at most meetings are NAPLAN and its relevance, NAPLAN on line and the ability of some schools to have sufficient hardware to cope with it, a child’s ability to participate fully in NAPLAN especially once on line, funding fairness, teacher preparedness (we discuss ways for teachers to be trained to cope with a modern teaching environment), indigenous issues in education, report cards and emerging trends and many other primary school related issues. Over the past two meetings we have been hearing from a psychologist by the name of Professor Frank Oberklaid. Professor Oberklaid’s longitudinal studies are demonstrating the things which are most important for children to thrive in our world. He argues that as much early intervention as possible allows for the best longitudinal results. Much of his work is relevant to 0 – 3 year old but I think it has relevance right up to our 12 year olds. Professor Oberklaid’s main suggestions are summarised in a program entitled Thrive with Five and I list them here for your consideration. Professor Oberklaid contends that if parents and schools work together on these five issues, then a child will thrive.  ...Read More


Musical

Thursday, June 21, 2018

I again extend my sincere appreciation to our community for our musical this year. Our students excelled and had great fun. They really showed us how to participate in large
events, be mindful of one another and to be independent at times. We were really impressed with the students. The parents who helped out were extraordinary. Beth Ben Karmona and Andrea Cunningham gave up hours of time to help prepare students and at the event were incredibly supportive. An army of mothers helped with sewing, makeup, hair and moving sets. As I said at our Saturday night performance, I am terrified I will leave a name out so I won’t mention individuals, but we were very, very grateful to the parents who helped out (and I think who had a bit of fun along the way!). I am even grateful to parents who just organised their children to be on time and ready for their back stage preparation – it was appreciated. The staff worked as a team and some even brought their teenage children to help out back stage. It was a huge task but done so well. I will mention Mrs Luostarinen who has not had a lunch break all year because she’s been rehearsing leads and organising sections of the musical. Thank you for your talent and skill and that you are such fun to work with – I know the students love you!  ...Read More


Thank you

Thursday, June 07, 2018

Thank you to the 108 parents who completed the recent survey put out by Lutheran Education Australia. Strong trends for Grace Lutheran Primary School includedTeachers having high expectations for each child’s learning  ...Read More


Reading Success

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Any parent who comes into school to listen to a variety of children in our younger years read out loud will note the differences in fluency and word attack which is apparent between children of the same age. As I visit upper primary classrooms, it is again obvious the students who are struggling with texts and the others who are able to easily work out the written word. Of course some strugglers have specific learning difficulties and they need a special program which is offered at school. But the majority of our students have no learning difficulties and should engage readily with the written word. Parents can be enormously helpful with this skill for children of any reading level and here are the strategies which are recommended by experts who study children and how they engage with quality literature.   ...Read More


Happy Mother’s Day

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Happy mother’s day to all the mums, grandmothers and special friends in our community. This year 25 mothers joined me for a lunch at the Belvedere and what a fun time was had by all. We hope to make this an annual event. I know it is hard for people to take time off for such a special gathering, but I was grateful to those who were able to make it. I would also like to thank Katie Marshall and Ali King for organising our Mother’s Day stall this year. This is such an important activity in our school and watching the joy children have at buying a special gift for their mother is a delight.  ...Read More


Developing Grit

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Do you ever follow the Grace College bus with their ‘Grit, Grace, Growth’ logo? I love the word grit, to say, it to think about it and to apply it. I find it interesting that we talk about grit so much in educational circles at the moment and attempt to find ways to have children persevere when challenged rather than just giving up quickly.  ...Read More


End of Term

Thursday, March 29, 2018

What an exciting last two weeks we have had! Our Commonwealth Games Harmony Day was a great day of celebration with Luke Howarth MP attending and presenting a flag and our students all participating in activities which enhance inclusion and harmonious relationships. Our School Captains wrote the message for the day and it included the words:  ...Read More


Optimism

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Following on from my article in the last Ripples, I recently heard the educational consultant Tony Ryan speak. To begin his presentation he gave us much data which demonstrated that our world is not all gloom and doom as we would think each evening as we watch our news services. He showed us that our life expectancy generally in the 21st Century is the highest ever recorded – in fact he talked about people in the western world starting to live to 150 years of age in the not too distant future – I think I’ll be very tired by then! He told us that for the first time in recorded history, China is now free from famine, before 1000AD 15% of people in the world died due to violence related issues and now it is 1% and that poverty, whilst it still exists is far down statistically than from years ago. Tony asked us to think about how we can prepare our young people for an extraordinary future and he argued that it is through teaching capabilities such as adaptive agility, empathy, inquiry and initiative. Tony dwelt on ‘empathy’ as a dialogue and he urged us to move from hopeless talk to hopeful talk with ourselves and with our children. As a Christian, I believe the gospel teaches us hope and I know that at any low points in my life, it is through scripture and prayer that I regain hope. My faith tells me that there is always hope, another day, a brighter future and security in knowing where my destiny lies. Tony’s book is ‘The Next Generation’ and if you want to have an interesting read on how we can prepare hopeful, resilient, perseverant children – I recommend it to you.  ...Read More


A True Man of Character

Thursday, March 01, 2018

Last week a great crusader for God passed from this world into the next. His name was Reverend Billy Graham. For many of you, he would seem just an old man, but I have met people who attended his crusades in the 1970s and 80s and who were deeply moved by the words he had to say. Rev Graham’s legacy is converting tens, possibly hundreds of thousands of people to Christianity. He was 99 years old when he died - what an incredible man. Billy Graham was a man of words – written and spoken and I am sure they will be unpacked for years to come. One of my favourite quotes of Billy Graham’s is  ...Read More