Healesville Primary School


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Week 1 - Term 1 - Friday 29th January 2021

From the Principal's Desk…

Dear Parents and Carers,

I hope that everyone had an enjoyable holiday with family and friends.

We are very excited to begin this new school year. Staff came in over the holidays to begin the set up of their rooms to find that we were having every light in the school replaced with more energy efficient, brighter lighting. The electrician has been extremely busy, and a huge proportion of the gym floor is covered with the old fittings and globes. This was an Education Department initiative that cost us nothing. Our rooms are now finished and waiting for our students on Friday.

Over the past two days staff have undertaken further professional learning around School Wide Positive Behaviours and Writing. They have also planned all their start up lessons. I would like to thank all of our staff for their hard work, dedication and positive attitude – it is going to be a fantastic year at HPS!

The book packs remained at school this year and our students will receive their supplies in class. The reason for this was we did not want to have all our families coming onsite at the one time in case COVID restrictions changed.

As I mentioned briefly via Dojo on Wednesday, we had some great news regarding another Departmental Initiative – the Primary Maths Science Specialist Initiative. Basically, the department will pay for a full time top of the scale teacher salary to cover the replacement of two current teachers whilst they undertake the training in a part time capacity over two years. Chris Kent and Troy Stafford will be those two teachers. We decided to choose Maths as our focus because we have had a very strong Literacy focus for the past few years. To enable minimal disruption to the teaching and learning of students in their classes the department recommends a job share situation. Therefore, as well as sharing the Maths training and specialist role they will also job share a five/six class. They will begin their training in March of this year. Once they have completed the initial sessions in term one, they will then begin to work in all other classes of the school – training those teachers. For the first month of term the class will have both teachers present and teaching – an amazing situation. This has meant that we were then a class teacher short. Emily Bradford will be the class teacher of the three/four class, this is also a bonus for HPS as she is a great teacher. We are very happy to have her join the three/ four team.

Last year it was also announced that every school in Victoria would be receiving money to employ a teacher / tutor to assist in bridging the gap due to remote learning. This was to be Emily’s role however with her moving to a classroom we needed to employ someone. Fenna Hogg who was planning on cutting back to begin the pathway to retirement has changed those plans and will now be our Teacher / Tutor for three days a week. Again, great news for us! Fenna has already undertaken small group intervention literacy training and will have further training for this role.

Bek Clark will be out of a class this year, she is our Learning Specialist – Literacy. Bek will be assisting teachers with their Literacy planning as well as coaching and mentoring all teachers on best practice teaching and learning in Literacy.

It is also very exciting to welcome back Sharon Gellert in her new role for 2021 as our STEM Specialist Teacher. Sharon as you know is our ICT guru and we look forward to her teaching the students all things – Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths.

Rosie House notified me towards the end of the break that she would be taking leave for all of Term One and Two and possibly beyond. This meant that we needed a teacher for The Arts and PE. Again, thank you Fenna – she will be teaching The Arts two days a week. Fenna will be teaching Visual Art in Term One and Two and Performing Arts will be taught in Term Three and Term Four. Ali Bryan who was teaching PE last year is returning to this role, thank you Ali. Ali will also be teaching in the Grade One/ Two on Fridays. It has been quite a frantic week for logistics planning but everything has come together. The staff are excited and energized to be returning and we have so many opportunities this year – it will be a great year


The following is our full staffing structure:

Name - Time Fraction - Role - Level/Subject

Tracey Robertson-Smith - 1.0 - Principal

Sharyn Borg - 1.0 - Class Teacher - Prep/One

Georgia Horsley - 1.0 - Class Teacher - Prep/One

Kelly Laidlaw - 0.8 - Class Teacher - One/Two

Ali Bryan - 0.2 - Class Teacher - One/Two

Emily Bradford - 1.0 - Class Teacher - Three/Four

Marlene Williams - 1.0 - Class Teacher - Three/Four

Catherine Vermeltfoort - 1.0 - Class Teacher - Four/Five

Megan Bult - 1.0 - Class Teacher - Five/Six

Troy Stafford - 0.5 - Class Teacher - Five/Six

Chris Kent - 0.5 - Class Teacher - Five/Six

Bek Clarke - 0.5 - Learning Specialist - Literacy/PSD

Troy Stafford - 0.5 - PMSI - Maths

Chris Kent - 0.5 - PMSI - Maths

Sharon Gellert - 0.4 - Specialist - STEM

Fenna Hogg - 0.4 - Specialist - The Arts

Ali Bryan - 0.4 - Specialist - P.E.

Fenna Hogg - 0.6 - Teacher - Teacher/Tutor Program

Simone King - 0.8 - Administration

Louise George - 0.8 - Business Manager

Penny Mentiplay - 0.4 - Chaplain

Tina Stewart - Integration Aide + Quick Smart Maths

Margaret Balsdon - Integration Aide

Andy Collett - Integration Aide

Maidi Mitchell - Integration Aide + Library

Eleanor Bruce - LLI

Tracey Robertson-Smith

Friday 5 Feb - Assembly

Thursday 11 Feb - House Swimming Sports

Friday 12 Feb - Newsletter

Tuesday 16 Feb - School Council Meeting

Friday 19 Feb - District Swimming

Friday 19 Feb - Assembly

Friday 26 Feb - Newsletter

Monday 1 Mar - Division Swim

Friday 5 Mar - Assembly

Monday 8 Mar - Labour Day Holiday

Friday 12 Mar - Newsletter

Friday 19 Mar - Colour Run - TBC

Friday 19 Mar - Assembly - TBC

Tuesday 23 Mar - School Council

Wednesday 24 Mar - SCHOOL PHOTO DAY


Friday 26 Mar - Newsletter

Monday 29 Mar - District Athletics

Thursday 1 Apr - Last Day of Term 1

Thursday 1 Apr - Assembly

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