Our students are treated with dignity and respect. Their happiness and safety are our top priorities.
A Place to Belong
As part of a system of Catholic schools in the Diocese of Parramatta, our students are treated with dignity and respect. Their safety and wellbeing are our top priorities. The wellbeing and safety of all students is central to the purpose of Catholic education and we acknowledge that healthy relationships and exceptional pastoral care are core to each child’s positive experience at school.
Schools in the Diocese of Parramatta have a strong focus on pastoral care, and in addition the support of our school counsellor, additional resourcing is provided for wellbeing initiatives overseen by the Wellbeing Coordinator. The Wellbeing Coordinator is supported by staff on the Wellbeing and Behaviour Team, Leading Counsellors as well as K-12 System Counsellors in the implementation of these wellbeing initiatives.
St Joseph's is committed to providing a learning environment where students can thrive, feel safe and supported, and are nurtured to grow, belong and be confident.
St Joseph's equips students with the knowledge and skills to cultivate their wellbeing through Religious Education, health, and wellbeing classes. We believe this sense of wellbeing and connectedness promotes healthy personal development in students and contributes to their academic success.
We support the social and emotional welfare of students and their families through effective strategies, recommendations, policies and procedures, guidelines and tools. Our strong focus on pastoral care includes school counsellors and wellbeing initiatives to support students.
Our school celebrates the inclusion of all students, supporting the learning needs of every individual and providing learning opportunities to build their social skills.
Our Wellbeing Initiatives
Positive Behaviour Support for Learning (PBS4L)
This whole school framework helps our school to ensure our students are safe, respectful learners. As a school community we live out these key principles and embed them in everything we do on the playground and in the classroom.
Together students take part in activities that aim to:
- empower each student to support each other and contribute positively to the school community
- develop students’ understanding of what it means to be safe, respectful and a learner
- build a sense of school community.
Social Support - Pied Piper Club
This is run during lunch for students who are finding it difficult coping with the demands of the playground.
A teacher works with the student and their friend to develop skills to play cooperatively, take turns and make new friends.
The School Counsellor at St Joseph’s plays a key role in all areas of school life, working with:
- staff to ensure that the ideals of our pastoral care policy is being implemented effectively
- class groups requiring additional support to be safe, respectful learners individual students who require explicit support
- parents through phone calls and meetings with teachers.
Pastoral care programs at each year level are designed to help build resilience, independence and courage within each student.
Pastoral Care Initiatives
We have four house teams. These teams form the basis for our Sports and Swimming Carnival and for other sporting activities throughout the year. All children are allocated to a house on enrolment, with children who have an older sibling already at school being allocated to the same house team as their sibling.
The four sports teams and their relevant colour are:
- Fitzpatrick - Yellow
- Breslin - Red
- Rosen - Green
- MacKillop - Blue
Recognition of Students
Positive behaviours are celebrated. At assembly each fortnight, students are recognised for their achievements with Merit Awards. Once each term Joey awards are presented to students who are safe, respectful learners. Each classroom has a positive reward system which also recognises students who are displaying safe, respectful and learner behaviours.
Experiencing leadership gives students confidence, celebrates strengths and prepares young people to make a contribution to our community and world. At St Joseph's we offer an extensive Year 6 Leadership program of leadership skills and qualities development. It may include interaction with leaders from other local Catholic schools, as well as a program of planned activities and events, including organising assemblies, to help the student leaders refine their leadership skills and build teamwork.
In addition senior students act as mentors for younger students with our Buddy Program.
A thoughtful approach to welcoming students is something that our school is really proud to offer local families. Transition programs are important for all students to prepare for new beginnings. We run an orientation program to make the milestone of starting 'big school' as easy as possible for students and their families.
Each child is assigned a Year 6 buddy during their Orientation to school. The Year 6 buddies read stories and complete craft activities during Buddy Time and are also a point of contact and support for the Kinder students in the playground. The buddy system is a positive model in that it allows the Year 6 students to assume responsibility for a younger child, while at the same time giving the Kinder child an older role model.
Building Child Safe Communities
We are committed to providing children and young people with school environments where they are safe, informed and participate, and where the adult community works together with them towards making this happen.
We care about every student!
Contact St Joseph's today to find out how we can help your child.