St Patrick's Primary School Pakenham
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136 Princes Highway
Pakenham VIC 3810

Phone: 03 5943 9000


"That they may all be one, as you Father, are in me and I am in you"


Newsletter for 11th March 2021

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Newsletter for 11th March 2021

Dear Parents,

Our chosen profession, whatever that may be, affords us the opportunity to take a day off if we are unwell, or even change jobs if we wish. However, the most important job that we do does not afford this luxury - the job of being a parent. It is a full time 24/7 permanent unpaid position that is the most rewarding, whilst at the same time most challenging, job that we will ever do.  We don’t have the option of not continuing in the role once we have become a parent regardless of the age of our children.

I am sure that parents reading this newsletter would agree that the experience of parenting is very different to what you might have imagined it to be like.  Every day throws up different challenges and experiences and there is no guidebook that you can refer to that covers all situations.  Why is it so hard at times?  Because our children are our most precious possessions and their happiness has a direct impact on our own happiness.  We want more than anything else to be successful in our parenting role to give our children the best possible start in life.  It is the job that we are most desperate to succeed in. 

Here at St Patrick’s we want exactly what you want, for your children to get the very best start in life as possible.  The responsibility of being in the care of your most precious possession is never lost on us and we want to work with you to help to achieve this common goal.  We are on your side!

If you are experiencing a tough period for whatever reason, please keep us informed as we can make adjustments as required for your child at school.  We may also be able to channel you into professional help if it is deemed necessary.  We have many pastoral programs that operate within the school on a need to basis.  During the more difficult times it is our hope that we can assist in making the role of parenting a little easier.  Please have confidence that all issues remain confidential.  

You are welcome to make an appointment with your child’s teacher, or school leadership, at any time should you have issues or concerns.  If your concern is particularly pastoral care related that is part of Megan Escalante’s Deputy role and I would encourage you to contact her. 

Confirmation for 2020 Grade Six Students

Congratulations to our 2020 Year Six students who celebrated the Sacrament of Confirmation last night with Bishop Greg Bennet, Fr Janeesh and Fr Paul.  It was a wonderful celebration and they enjoyed the extra special benefit of being the first students that Bishop Greg has Confirmed in our Diocese.   On behalf of everyone I thank Bishop Greg Bennet, Fr Janeesh, Fr Paul, Siji, Noleen Chalmers and the whole Sacramental Team. 


As mentioned last week all children in the school have been provided with brand headphones that they can use when accessing digital technology.  Every child has their own headphones that will be stored in a sealed bag and will be their responsibility.  I am sure that parents appreciate that this has been a significant expense to the school. We ask that you please speak to your child about the importance of caring for their headphones responsibly as families will have to pay if a replacement is required.

Pick Up and Drop Off

Again, I remind parents that whilst it is great that we now have the opportunity again to park cars in the carpark, you must walk over and collect your child.  For the safety of the students please do not call for your children to walk across to your car unaccompanied. 


SIMON is our new in class Learning Management Software and PAM is the Parent Access Module for this software.   To begin with parents will be able to use PAM to notify the school of student absences and keep track of student attendance as well as email your class teacher.   Going forward PAM will be where parents will receive notifications from school, check the School Calendar, will be able to book Family Learning Conversations (Parent Teacher Interviews) and will be able to access School reports.   Please read the information on how to set up your PAM account further in this newsletter.

2022 Foundation (Prep) Tours

We are currently taking Foundation enrolments and running 2022 Foundation (Prep) Tours by appointment.  If you know of anyone considering St Pat’s for their child please ask them to call the school Office on 5943-9000 and book a tour.

COVID Procedures

I remind parents that the following procedures are in place for the safety of all;

  • Masks are not required to be worn by parents at all times when in the school, only in situations where you are unable to social distance.
  • Parents wishing to come into the grounds to drop off or collect their children must scan the QR code on the way in and wait out the front of the classroom. Please do not enter the rooms and social distance whilst waiting.  You must limit your visit to less than 15 minutes, gates open at 3pm at the end of the day.
  • Parents waiting for children in the pick-up lines need to ensure that their children know which carpark to go to.
  • If you do park your car you must walk over and collect your child. Please do not call for your children to walk across to your car unaccompanied. 
  • Meetings with staff are by appointment only. Any parent that is going to be in the school for more than 15 minutes needs to sign on and complete the COVID form at the Office.
  • Please communicate with staff via phone or email.
  • The Office is open if required, however, please observe the density limits (maximum of 6 people). It is preferable to phone or email if possible rather than come to the Office.
  • All extra cleaning and hand hygiene that was in place is still being adhered to.
  • Please do not send food items to share with others when it is your child’s birthday as they cannot be handed out.
  • If your child is sick, or displaying symptoms, please keep them at home. Children that present as sick or displaying symptoms at school will be sent home.
  • Bubble taps are operational at school.
  • An ample amount of sports equipment will be provided at school so we ask that students do not bring equipment from home.











Boi 2DG, Malsawm 2DG, Cung 4SM, Ladu 6L, Emily 5SA, Paul 2G, Emily 2G, Lucas 1W, Tino 5RS



Wednesday 31st March 2021

Last day of Term 1 for students

Thursday 1st April 2021

Student Free Day

Friday 2nd April 2021

Good Friday

SIMON -  a Learning Management Software solution for schools.

St Patrick’s Primary school is now using SIMON in the classroom to keep track of your child’s progress and learning as well as attendance.  SIMON will also be used for School Reports and Student Wellbeing.


PAM, SIMON’s Parent Access Module

 PAM (Parent Access Module) is our new Parent to School communication platform.   PAM provides real time access to keep parents updated with their children’s progress, important dates and messages. Relevant resources – calendar events, student reports, parent notified absences, absence data and sick bay notes can all be accessed via PAM.

Parents can easily book Parent Teacher interviews through PAM, and access teacher email addresses. 


Parents would have received an email from on Friday 5th March that contains instructions and a link for them to click on.  Please check your JUNK or SPAM mailbox if you do not receive this email.  PAM accounts are linked via your email address that we have in our systems.  If you have recently changed your email or you can not find the email sent on Friday please call or email us on

Click on the 'forget password' link to set your password and then verify your email address.  (Email addresses must be verified for PAM to work properly).  Once your email is verified, your email can be used as the username for your account.

Once you have successfully logged in, you can save PAM to your homescreen on your device.

If you have any issues or need help with PAM please contact the school via email,

Parent Notified Absences via PAM

Once you have PAM set up and saved to your home screen you can easily send in Parent Notifed absences.   Please use this platform going forward as this automaticaly syncs with the class roll.   This will fix the issues of recieveing SMS notifications even though you had already notified the school. 

The Be You wesite has some great articles about anxiety.  Please see the link below. 

If any families are struggling at this time and would like to reach out for a chat or support please contact Meg Escalante, our Wellbeing officer, via email on

You can also visit the Be You website which has contact numbers for you to call. 


Congratulations to all the students (last year's Grade 6) who participated in the Sacrament of Confirmation this week!  Bishop Greg was a lovely celebrant and announced that the night would go down in history, because their special day was HIS first Confirmation ceremony to be celebrated in the Sale Diocese. He chatted to all candidates and sponsors before everyone went in, afterwards a number of parents and grandparents commented on how he made the ceremony more intimate and older siblings thought he was ‘cool’!

Our next Sacrament is First Eucharist in May, and there will be approximately 180 recipients, so I’ll forward details onto everyone as everything is finalised.

Please keep an eye on Operoo. 


Sacrament Dates for 2021

First Holy Communion - Grade 4 and Grade 5 Students

21st and 22nd April - Parent Workshop

Communion Masses - Every Saturday and Sunday in May - Booking details will be given out during the Workshops. 

Confirmation - Grade 6 Students

22nd July - Parent Workshop

31st July - 1st August - Enrolment Masses

7th and 8th August - Formation Masses

14th and 15th August - Formation Masses

20th and 21st August - Confirmation Masses

Reconciliation - Grade 3 Students

14th October - Parent Workshop

20th and 21st October - Reconcilation 

School Photographs for 2021 - St Patricks Pakenham

School Photos were taken last week! 

If you didn't get a chance to order, do not worry, a code went home with your child yesterday which you can use to order.  If you didn't receive a code and you haven't already ordered photos please contact the photographer directly on the phone number below. 

Orders will need to be placed online at using your unique code.  


If you have any inquiries, please contact us on (03) 5942 5234

Have you installed the new SZapp?   

Skoolbag is no longer being used, install SZapp now! 

 Follow the installation guide below to install the new app on your smart devices.  



Communication is sent via Operoo's email system so please make sure this is set up and up to date.  If you need to update or change an email address please log on to your existing account and click on the 3 lines in the top right corner.  A menu will open up, click on 'My Account' then on 'Change My Email'.  Then all you have to do is follow the instructions.  (Enter your new email and verify it).  Then you will be good to go.   We will be notified of your new email address and we will be able to update it in our system.   

Dont forget to update your contact details in your childs profile as well! 

Please click on the link for detailed instructions.

If you do not follow these steps and we update it from our end all the data you have entered will be lost and you will have to create a new account and profile. 

Please log in and accept the ICT User Agreement for 2021 if you havent already done so!

Please remember to update any details in Operooo, for example change of address or phone number,  this will send us a message that your details have changed and we are then able to update our database.

Don't forget to upload your child's hayfever letters including symptoms specific to your child!

If you have any problems using Operoo, please call into the school office preferably on a Monday, Thursday or Friday and we will be able to help you.  

Paddy's Kitchen's purpose is to make a difference in people's lives, by providing a fresh, nutritious meal in a friendly environment.  Paddy's Kitchen serves every 1st and 3rd Sunday of the month from St Patrick's Pakenham, Parish hall.  Dinner at 6pm

Paddy’s Kitchen is an outreach program initiated by the parishioners of St. Patrick’s Church, Pakenham, to serve our community.
Students, staff and parents of St Patrick’s school have been playing an important role to reach out to the community by volunteering to help with cooking, serving and cleaning.  As one of the team leaders of Paddy’s’ Kitchen, I would like to invite the parents and friends of St Patrick’s school to be involved and assist to reach out to our beautiful Pakenham community.
Through this program, our school community makes it evident that, ‘The person is not only sacred but also social. Moreover, we believe we have a right and a duty to participate in society, seeking together the common good and well-being of all, especially poor and vulnerable people.’

Please email me if you have any questions with how you can be a part of Paddy’s Kitchen.
Tresa Andrews