This week with our Principal - Mr Taylor

Term 4 Week 3

Dear Parents and Caregivers,


We are extremely proud of the awesome girls touch team who represented our school as the North Coast Champions on Monday and have returned as State Champions. Shaylee Bradbury, Grace Emmett, Emma Evans, Layla Hadlow, Isabelle Kilburn, Edie Nicholas, Keeley Parker, Elli Steel and Lilika Yamada were a team to be reckoned. Well done on the exceptional games played against the highest calibre of competition to win this title. This is a truly outstanding achievement and you are to be congratulated. Paul Parker and Mrs Stewart have coached and supported the girls during the season and we give our thanks to them for their commitment to the team.


Imagine being the 3rd fastest runner in NSW. That is exactly what Evie Clarkson from Banora Point PS has achieved. Last week Evie competed at State and was placed 3rd in the 10 years girls’ 200m final. 3rd fastest of all 10 years girls in the whole of NSW. Considering there are 1800+ public primary schools, Evie’s achievement is very special indeed. A stunning result. Well done Evie. We are very proud of you and your achievement.


Our school was saddened to hear of the death of Dylan Carpenter, 20 years of Banora Point. Dylan attended BPPS from 2002 to 2008. Dylan died tragically last weekend while surfing off Fingal Head. Dylan is fondly remembered by long serving staff at the school as ‘A kind and happy young man who got along with everyone.’ Our thoughts and prayers are with the Carpenter family at this most difficult of times.


Last Wednesday Banora Point welcomed our newest students to ‘big school’ for their first transition day from 10am to 11am. Transition days are an opportunity for the children to learn about and become familiar with their new environment and the people at school. Transition days also serve as an opportunity for staff to observe students and to begin making plans for how each little person can best be supported as they begin their school career. There is no more important year at school than kindergarten and Banora Point PS is very proud of all of our brand new students who visited our school Wednesday. Well done! I would particularly like to thank our Year 5 students who will be the ‘Year 6 Buddies’ for our new Kindy students next year. Your assistance was invaluable and you helped our newest students more than you will ever know. Well done!


In 2015 our SRC kindly raised funds to build an ANZAC Memorial Garden at the front of the Hall – facing the COLA. It would be greatly appreciated if parents could supervise toddlers at drop off and pick up so that they are not in the gardens as they can unknowingly cause damage to plants. Thank you for your cooperation.


I will be on leave from the NSW DoE from Tuesday 24th October to Wednesday November 1st. During this period I will travel to Chicago to attend an education conference. The conference is the ‘Expeditionary Learning 2017 National Conference’. Expeditionary Learning is a not - for - profit organisation supporting Deeper Learning practices in public schools across 30 US states. Expeditionary Learning was set up in the early 1990s as a collaboration between ‘Outward Bound’ and ‘The Harvard Graduate School of Education.’ The organisation is known to be one of the world’s leading organisations implementing student centred, project based learning. Expeditionary Learning’s Chief Academic Officer Ron Berger is a driving force in the organisation and is recognised within the education community for the ‘Austin’s Butterfly’ video and his book ‘An Ethic of Excellence.’ I brought Ron to Australia in 2016 to support staff professional learning at my former school Turramurra North PS. Deeper Learning occurs when a learner can transfer knowledge and skills learnt and apply it to a new context / situation. I will travel to Chicago at my own expense. I will pay for my own flights, car hire and accommodation expenses. The trip will also be undertaken while I am on leave. The school will cover the cost of the conference ticket only. While it may not be possible to entice Ron Berger to Australia in 2018, I will bring other leading educators from Expeditionary Learning to Banora Point to support our work. Mrs Henderson will relieve as Principal in my absence and Mrs Dance - Wilson will relieve as Deputy Principal.


Empathy – guiding our kids to understand and share others’ feelings. Relationships, relationships, relationships; three words of advice given to me years ago by a very wise leader. Relationships are at the heart of successful lives and successful organisations. One’s ability to build successful relationships should be considered one of the most important things to learn in life. Relationships are complex, but we can learn to be better relationship builders. It is never too late to learn anything in life. Empathy is central to relationship building. Empathy is known to be the ability to understand and share others’ feelings. It is the ability to place ourselves in someone else’s position and to have the desire to help or assist. An empathetic person would stop their car and assist someone with a flat tyre in the rain. They would think, about themselves in the same situation and what would help. Empathy is about understanding how and why someone else’s emotions are what they are. Empathetic people know what triggers emotions, how to support and how to help others know someone else cares for them. Empathy is not feeling sorry for someone, but rather ‘catching on’ to that person’s feelings. Empathy involves imagining ourselves in that person’s situation and thinking about what might help. It is when the person in distress knows that someone else knows, how and why you are feeling the way you are, that the difference is made. It is not always about the solution. It is about that person knowing that ‘I matter enough for someone to care about how I am feeling.’ Children learn empathy as they grow and respond to the world around them. As parents and teachers, we can guide their thinking – and reflection to help them develop their empathy. Opportunities arise every day ........

A few examples:

We all benefit through the empathy of others as life throws its challenges our way. The more empathy we can fuel in our children, the more successful their lives will be as they develop strong and life - long relationships.


Recently the school has received communications from concerned parents about the numbers of students and parents and cars in Durigan Place at 3pm each afternoon. It would appear that some parents are choosing to park and wait in Durigan Place instead of waiting in line and collecting their children via the ‘drop off zone.’ I have observed the situation on a number of occasions and on each occasion, I have observed cars with their wheels parked on the verge / footpath where children walk. This is a safety concern. The Health and Safety of students and staff at BPPS will always be our first priority. I have been in communication with Tweed Shire Council Road Safety Officer Alana Brooks. Alana has been out and observed the situation and has advised that the area will be closely monitored by council. Please ensure that you are parking carefully to keep our children safe and that you are not blocking residents’ driveways. The council has also advised that RMS do not believe Durigan Place meets requirements for a ‘school zone.’


You may have seen the raffle books come home with all students K - 6 who are eldest in the family. Please get behind this raffle. We hope to raise substantial funds. The P&C has kindly committed to donate the proceeds of the raffle to our school’s technology initiative which will see:-

We believe our technology upgrades will see Banora Point PS students enjoying access to technology matched by few other schools, public or private anywhere. Tickets are $5 each and all families are asked to sell one book of five tickets each please. You might be able to offer the tickets to colleagues at work or the wider family or even others in the street. Thank you for your help. Special thanks to the Berger Family for their magnificent donation of the holiday.

Paul Taylor