Port Noarlunga Primary School

Principal’s Update — Week 5, Term 1, 2022

Mar 1, 2022 | principal's update, school info

Quick links to sections in this post:

Good News Story

Principal’s Update

Staffing Update

School Events Calendar

Good News Story

Yard duty is a part of the weekly routine for staff. I have four duties timetabled but try to get out into the yard more often. So far this year I have experienced:

  • Two Year 1 students acting out the Lion King on a branch – singing and roaring included.
  • Some Year 1 to Year 3 boys using sticks to drill holes in bark chips to make jewelry.
  • A Year 4 student giving me their business card for their home business that donates to charity.
  • Random hugs from students from all year levels…very hard to sidestep these and not offend children but I’m doing my best.
  • Great soccer matches with a student referee who has their own whistle and cards. They also have the respect and attention of a large and diverse group of students. Awesome stuff.


Welcome to the first of my fortnightly Principal Updates for 2022. This is a new commitment that I am trialling after conversations with families. Initially, I was planning on a weekly blog post but a realistic view of my workload and my desire to produce something of high quality led to a fortnightly blog.

The goal of this piece is to lessen the word count and information overload that can happen on Class Dojo. We continue to review and refresh our communication methods and realise that this will take some time to achieve at a standard that we can all live with.

At times, I will need to post urgent information on Class Dojo that the whole school community needs to know. I am hopeful that by providing incidental information in the blog, that the important information isn’t missed.

We are putting a calendar on the website with key dates and we would like the website to be the major source of information at a whole school level. Class Dojo can be used for important whole of school posts and class sharing. Class Dojo will continue to be the main source of communication between teachers and families.

2022 hasn’t started as we would like however, we are seeing the lessening of some restrictions which restores some ‘normalcy’ to our lives. I urge parents who have children in Year 2 or below to remember that you haven’t yet experienced a year of schooling at Port Noarlunga Primary School that hasn’t been interrupted or impacted by COVID restrictions. There are a number of things that we had in place prior to March 2020 that have been put on hold or adapted to suit restrictions. We continue to look for ways to innovate and be more inclusive of families when restrictions are in place. This is a constantly evolving, ever changing situation that we adapt to as best we can.

We have choir starting again this week (1/3/2022) and this will be the first choir session for the year. Our Year 4/5/6 students are able to join and participate in the Choir that meets each week on Tuesdays. We have a Junior Choir on Friday afternoons for students in Year 1/2/3. These are both very well supported by our students.

Week 6 (next week) sees an increase in activities with some classes involved in Water Safety Lessons and Aquatics sessions. On Friday, 6 of our classes are participating in a Nature Play Incursion. These different activities are paid through the Activity (Excursion/Incursion) Levy that is part of your annual school fees. By the time you read this post we will have had the Governing Council AGM and have a new Chairperson and Governing Council elected. This is a great way to become involved in the school and we welcome all families to get involved where possible.


Shona Thompson, Year 3/4 class teacher and Aboriginal Education Teacher (AET), is embarking on a new employment adventure from Week 6 (7 March 2022) and thus, we have needed to find a replacement teacher to work with Danni Baumann in Room 16-2. We have employed Joshua Wright to fulfil that role. He will teach on Monday – Wednesday in Room 16-2. Josh is NOT related to me and our common surname is a coincidence. We wish Shona every success and happiness in her new role.

Joshua MacWilliams will take on the role of Aboriginal Education Teacher. This, coupled with his leadership role as Pedagogy and Practice Coordinator, means that he will not be able to take up his position as Reception teacher in 2022. I am very happy to announce that Tayla Bayly will be able to continue as the fulltime teacher in the Reception class which will ensure that there is no disruption to the teaching and learning. I understand that there were families who were looking forward to their child being in Mr Josh’s class but unfortunately that is not able to happen in 2022.

This year we are trialling a new leadership structure that we are confident will suit the needs of our school.

Victoria Corbett continues in her role of Student Wellbeing Leader and her focus in in the area of student support in learning and some behaviour.

Joshua MacWilliams has moved into his new role as Pedagogy and Practice Coordinator which when coupled with the AET and Student Voice components of his work, will support the teachers in their teaching and learning, and in feedback practices across the school.

Dana Lauck has completed her Psychology degree and is working 2 days per week as our Behaviour Practitioner. She is working intensely with a small number of students and families currently as well as supporting staff in their work.

Karen Thorburn has taken on an extra day a week to manage timetabling, schedules, bookings and all of the tedious and time-consuming parts of the ‘normal’ leadership work. Karen has vast experience in managing all areas of the school and we are grateful that we can look to her for support and advice in this area.

Vicki McCarthy, as our Business Manager, leads Finance, WHS, Grounds and a number of other areas of the school. She also line manages a number of our ancillary staff (SSOs) as our most senior SSO at the school. It is an exciting time and the team has hit the ground running.

I hope that this has provided you with a little more information and helped to clarify somethings.

Take care,

Events Calendar

School events can be found on our web page:


You can find ‘Events’ in the main menu on the front page at all times.

Event notifications will also be posted to ClassDojo.

Enquiries: contact the school.

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