Message from Rael Week 4 Term 1 2020

Another busy week in the life of CMS!

We have our first Working Bee of the year this weekend and will be here from 8-11am on Saturday morning. Viv Watson has done a wonderful job of finding lots of little jobs around the school that will aid in grounds beautification. There are plenty to do, and a huge variety of large-ish and small jobs. If you’re able to pop in, that’d be great, but there’s no obligation for the whole morning…if you’re able to be here for maybe an hour or so, that’s awesome also. We’ll wrap up by 11am, and will have a sausage sizzle to send you away with 😊

You will hopefully have seen the information regarding the Swim and Survive program for children aged 5+ in Week 7. I feel that, in Australia, all children should undertake this program or a program of this nature; I’m happy to have been able to link with Royal Life Saving Australia to have it in place. I very much envisage that this will become an annual fixture in our calendar. For this program, children and staff will travel by bus to CISAC in Bruce for a lesson each afternoon; gymnastics won’t take place during this week. Swim and Survive is a comprehensive swimming and water safety initiative of Royal Life Saving that seeks to increase the swimming and water safety skills of all Australian children in order to prevent drowning and increase participation in safe aquatic activity. Please register by 10 March to ensure your child can attend.

As all schools do, we work to ensure the best outcomes for children as they strive to reach for their potential. To support this, and to enrich ourselves with better information, we have made the decision here at CMS to implement some diagnostic testing. Using the Australian Council for Educational Research’s (ACER) Progressive Achievement Tests, we will build a more comprehensive picture of where children are in their learning and use the data to support future planning work for each child, especially in better identifying and understanding where there may be gaps that can then be addressed.

ACER’s Progressive Achievement approach is used in thousands of schools in Australia and around the world. The approach focuses on assessing and monitoring student growth over time and is underpinned by an understanding that students of the same age and in the same year of school can be at very different points in their learning and development. This is an Australian test designed to provide objective, norm-referenced information to teachers about the level of achievement attained by their students in skills and understanding in the areas of literacy and numeracy. This assessment will be carried out once a year for children in Year 1 to Year 6. These tests align with our curriculum and pedagogy, and won’t compromise the children’s experience in our classrooms at all.

To support your child, this diagnostic testing is used:

  • to identify gaps in the child’s learning
  • to establish a base line when a child enters the school
  • to support forward planning as to how best help the child overcome any potential learning difficulties and gaps in their learning
  • to assess the child’s progress while at the same time examining where to direct the teaching focus next
  • to allow us to better track growth over time

As always, should you have any questions or queries, or would just like to talk more around this, please don’t hesitate to be in touch.

The potential health threat from Covid-19 is still very much in the news and in our minds. I have linked here the latest ACT Health advice. Of course, should the situation change for where we are currently, we will follow advice and act accordingly.

Upcoming dates for your diaries…our AGM is at 7pm on Tuesday 17 March, and our next P&F meeting is on Thursday 12 March. All are welcome to both 😊

Have a great weekend!

Kindest regards,


Rael Matthews
Acting Principal


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