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St John's School, Silkwood
Motto Always Reaching for New Heights St-Johns-logo-RGB.jpg
Address Harold St, SILKWOOD QLD 4856
Postal Address PO Box 252, SILKWOOD QLD 4856
Phone Number (07) 4065 2193
Fax Number (07) 4065 2355
Email Address principal.silkwood@cns.catholic.edu.au
Web Site http://www.stjohnssilkwood.qld.edu.au
Total Enrolments 66 Peta Bryan
Year Levels Offered P-6
Student Population Co-Educational
Principal Peta Bryan
Parish PriestFr Kerry Crowley Southern Deanery Dean
Parish Number (07) 4065 2128

About our School

The small rural school of St John’s at Silkwood prides itself on being both Christ and child centred, providing excellent learning opportunities for the students it serves. The school is located in the heart of the Southern Deanery on the Cassowary Coast. Geographically placed in between the larger towns of Mission Beach, Tully and Innisfail, the school draws many of its students not only from Silkwood, but also the surrounding communities of Kurrimine Beach, Mission Beach and El Arish.

St John’s proud history commenced in 1948 when the school was opened by the Missionary Franciscan Sisters. The school comprised of children from the Silkwood area who were mainly of Italian descent and whose parents worked in the sugar cane industry. The Sisters served the local community for forty years, leaving in 1987. Today the dedicated lay staff continues the proud tradition of quality Catholic Education to many of the children and grandchildren of those first students.

The current St John’s community is respectful of the past and excited about the future, as it plays its part in inspiring St John’s students to live the school motto of “Always Reaching For New Heights.”

Distinctive Curriculum Offerings

St John’s is proud to offer several distinctive curriculum features to existing and prospective parents and indeed the wider Silkwood community.

St John’s is proud to be able to deliver “one stop learning” for students from Prep through to Year Six . Our stand alone Kindergarten facility presently caters for 3-5 year olds three days a week (Tuesday, Thursday and Friday).

Many of our current P-6 students first met at St John’s Silkwood Community Kindergarten. This service is affiliated with Catholic Early Learning and Care (Diocese of Cairns) and offers a program designed for children aged three and a half years and older. The program aims to enhance a child’s physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, creative and social development.

The curriculum taught at St John's School encompasses all of the Australian Curriculum Learning Areas, with an emphasis placed on Religious Education, English, Science, Hass, The Arts and Technology. Programs are created with the understanding that children develop and learn differently and with an awareness of multiple intelligence's and different learning styles.

St John’s offers a number of specialist programs. “Social and Emotional Learning” is developed through the “You Can Do It!” program to help foster better social and emotional intelligence. A music tuition program caters for the musically talented students and provides an additional opportunity for performance at special assemblies that feature our musicians. Physical Education is provided by a specialist teacher. The school is also very well resourced in Information and Communications Technology (ICT).  In addition to classroom computers, the school offers students access to laptops, chromebooks and iPads which can be transported into classrooms, the library or outdoor learning areas. Interactive White Boards which are located in all classrooms and the new library are providing many new 21st century teaching and learning opportunities for the school community. The integration of iPads, chromebooks and other ICT's has enhanced our teaching and learning outcomes across the curriculum.

St John's is committed to a variety of assessment and reporting procedures that demonstrate student achievement and success at their respective level of development. Student Portfolios and parent / teacher conferences are completed in both first and second semester which provide a formal opportunity for students, parents and the classroom teacher to celebrate aspects of each students' learning journey and set goals for the following semester or year. St John’s also send out a school based student report card at the completion of both semester one and two which provides parents with a detailed account of a student's overall achievement across all aspects of school life.

Extra Curricular Activities

Excursions and Camps

Excursions and camps are part of the curriculum at St John's.  School camp for the years 3-6 students has provided an opportunity for students to visit a diversity of interesting places including O'Brien's Creek, Undarra, Cooktown, Tinaroo, Charters Towers and recently the Dinosaur trail.

  • Students in Prep- 6 are expected to participate in any excursions that have been organised.
  •  Students in Yr4/5/6 are expected to participate in any camp that is organised.

Student Council

The SRC is made up by school leaders and sport's house captains. Regular meetings include an agenda, minute taking  and decision making processes.

Premier's Reading Challenge

All students from P-6 participate in the Premier's Reading Challenge. Students are asked to read 15-20 books over a period of three months and receive a certificate from Premier.

School Sports

  • School Cross Country for all students P-6
  • District Cross Country for all eligible students
  • School Inter-house Athletics carnival for all students P-6
  • District Athletics Carnival for all eligible students
  • School Swimming Carnival for all students P-6

Swimming Program

Swimming lessons for P-6 students are held in Term Three. The objective of this program is to raise student's water awareness and safety.

Other Sports

  • Soccer is without question the most popular pursuit of both male and female students, many of whom are members of the Silkwood Soccer Club and Peninsula Representative teams. St John's has an active association with the Silkwood, Mena Creek Sports Association which provides inter-school and representative sporting opportunities for our students.
  • Tennis lessons have been included as part of a School Sporting Grant. 

The construction of an 800 square metre undercover sports facility enhances outdoor learning opportunities in all weather conditions for our students.

The library and classrooms provides a state of the art learning facility to promote contemporary and digital education. Our extensive sporting fields are complimented by two synthetic run ups for our long jump pits and a full size 400m athletics track.

SPEECH /DRAMA- YOUNG PERFORMERS

St John’s has had a long association with Mrs Tina Patane who visits St John’s to take a large number of our students for private Speech and Drama lessons. Additionally, Mrs Patane instructs and conducts the whole school in preparation of Choral Verse speaking. Each year the students participate in the Innisfail Young Performers Eisteddfod, with much success.

INSTRUMENTAL MUSIC PROGRAM

A music tuition program provides small group music instruction with a qualified music tutor.

 At St John’s, the unique gifts and talents of all students are valued. Within and beyond the school, every effort is made to find new and innovative ways to celebrate these.

Social Climate

St John’s School is a true reflection of the friendly and community minded Parish and town in which it is located. People who are new to the school (children, families and staff) are always welcomed openly. The work ethic and tireless commitment of the families of St John’s maintains an optimistic and committed view towards the future for their children.

Parents gather for regular social evenings each term which alternate in focus from parents versus students soccer games to lawn bowls challenges. Our pizza nights have proven to be a highlight of the school year!

St John’s is very fortunate to have access to a school counsellor and benefit greatly from regular visits from our Parish Priest.

 

Parent Involvement

The school prides itself on an incredibly hard working and effective Parents and Friends Association. The Parents and Friends are involved in coordinating the school tuckshop, uniform shop, social events, working bees as well as being the major source of raising revenue for the school. The St John's Parents and Friends Association has a unique constitution that reinforces the School Board functionality of its purpose. 

St John’s School recognises and respects that parents are the first educators and as such, are important stake holders in optimising the educational outcomes of their children. The ongoing partnership between the school and parents occurs formally four times a year (Assessment and Reporting) and informally daily, weekly and each term. Parent information evenings, year and term overviews, assemblies, newsletters, open days, parent helpers in class, excursions, sports coaching, sacramental programmes and camps are all ways staff and parents work together for the benefit of students.

The small school enrolment (35 families) creates a family atmosphere at St John’s. Another benefit of a small school is the capacity for everyone to become involved in the social and family orientated events held each year.

Parent Satisfaction

Through the sample of parents surveyed, the majority of parents report that St John’s School always aims to improve the education it provides. The majority of parents said that St John’s lives out the Catholic values of witness and service. From the same sample, the majority of parent’s report that St John's offers a broad and relevant curriculum, encouraging each child to achieve to the best of their ability. 96.6% of parents agreed that classrooms are well-presented and stimulating places for learning. These results have indicated our commitment to be child centered in all that we do in the delivery of curriculum. St John’s will continue to be a place of continual improvement and renewal.

Data Last Updated Tue 30 May 2017

Staff Reporting Data
Qualification Highest level of attainment Doctoral / Post-doctoral Masters Bachelor degree Diploma Certificate
% Staff with this qualification 0% 12% 35% 12% 6%

Workforce composition
Headcount FTE (Full-time equivalent)
Teaching Staff8 6.2
Non-Teaching Staff 9 3.36
Indigenous 1 0.16

Total funds expended on teacher professional development$5310

Teaching Staff Involved in Professional Development100%

Major Professional Development Initiatives

    

  • Visible Learning
  • Evidence In Action
  • Three Worlds of the Religious Text
  • Meditation using Scripture
  •  Teaching Strategies for ASD
  • TREWTH Conference
  • Differentiated Learning
  • Managing Challenging Behaviours
  •  CES Curriculum Conference
  • Religious Education Unit Planning for Composite Schools
  •  Social Emotional Learning
  •  Literacy / Numeracy Coaching
  •  Guided Reading
  • Aspiring Leaders Program
  • Joanne Dooner Writing
  • Numeracy  Data Analysis
  • Parent Engagement Workshop
  • Thinking Outside the Box
  •  Spirituality
  •  Information Communication Technology
  •  Developing English Language
  • Data and NAPLAN Analysis
  • Consistency of Teacher Judgement
  • First Aid
  • Siloam Retreat
  •  Professor Thomas Groome
  •  NAPLAN - Principles of Good Writing.

Average staff attendance rate for the school year, based on unplanned absences of sick and emergency leave for periods up to 5 days99%

Percentage of teaching staff retained from the previous school year83.00%

Staff Satisfaction

The majority of staff at St John’s agreed that the school lives out Catholic values in their words and actions, promoting justice , compassion and service. Our staff strongly agrees that St John’s delivers quality educational outcomes  for students, encouraging students to develop a love of learning. The majority of staff believe that they are provided with the training and  professional development needed to do job well. Staff are very supportive of each other and enjoy a great working relationship with their colleagues.

Data Last Updated Thu Jun 22 2017

Student Reporting Data
Average student attendance rates
Prep YR 1 YR 2 YR 3 YR 4 YR 5 YR 6
92.92% 91.95% 95.54% 93.56% 94.85% 96.09% 93.06%
How non-attendance is managed by the school

At St John's parents are requested to make contact with the school via telephone or email on the day that the student is absent. Unexplained absences are followed  up with a telephone call from the school. If patterns of non-attendance the principal will request a meeting. These procedures are outlined in the parent handbook as well as published in the school newsletter.

The distance travelled

At St John's we use the principles of visible learning and visible teaching. Teachers recognise learning through the eyes of the students and see themselves as learners. Evidence is used to create innovation in the learning environment.  The characteristics of a good learner are promoted in all aspects of school life.  These include the following: articulating what they are learning and why, understanding assessment tools and what their results mean, positively supporting their peer's learning, setting goals and actively seeking feedback.

We recognise the need to teach thinking strategies which encourage higher order thinking skills placing a high priority on empowering students with thinking skills such as: The ability to reason, To make informed judgments, To critically evaluate information, Thinking creatively. The Numeracy Coaching Program enhanced teaching and learning at St John's. Significant time and money has been invested into professional development, purchasing and organisation of resources.

Where are we going ?

St John's School staff is committed to achieving excellence in teaching and learning. Alignment between the Mission and Vision statements has the enhanced effect of providing a safe, supportive and challenging learning environment for the students. A school wide focus on our vision "plant the seed, nurture the gifts and celebrate the harvest", promotes student achievement.

The staff at St John's is working to ensure that we have a collaborative approach to teaching, learning and assessment that is explicit and promotes visible learning. Leadership and staff have implemented a professional learning community to develop a continuous cycle of inquire to collect information to improve teaching and learning practices which will lead to improved student outcomes. St John's ambition is for students to develop a lifelong engagement with learning. St John's has established high standards for our students and responds to individual needs through differentiated programming.

Student Satisfaction

100% of students are proud to be a student of St John's. The majority of students agreed that Religion is an important part of school life and they are encouraged to develop personal faith. 95.2% of students believe St John's is a great school.  All students agreed that the school rules are fair and consistent. They also strongly agreed that the school is well organised and runs  smoothly. 100% of students feel comfortable in participating in class activities and that students are encouraged to do the best they can. The students also strongly agreed that learning is important to them. From the same sample, 100% students said that learning was interesting and  challenging and makes them think.

Data Last Updated Tue May 30 2017

Reading, Writing & Numeracy Results - Year 3, 2016
Reading Average Score for the school 378.292
Average Score for Queensland 427.632
% students at or above the national benchmark 90%
Writing Average Score for the school 408.777
Average Score for Queensland 420.141
% students at or above the national benchmark 90%
Spelling Average Score for the school 384.94
Average Score for Queensland 415.204
% students at or above the national benchmark 90%
Grammar and Punctuation Average Score for the school 447.267
Average Score for Queensland 439.375
% students at or above the national benchmark 100%
Numeracy Average Score for the school 365.283
Average Score for Queensland 400.942
% students at or above the national benchmark 90%

Data Last Updated Mon Jun 26 2017

Reading, Writing & Numeracy Results - Year 5, 2016
Reading Average Score for the school 441.294
Average Score for Queensland 507.478
% students at or above the national benchmark 87.5%
Writing Average Score for the school 463.711
Average Score for Queensland 474.369
% students at or above the national benchmark 100%
Spelling Average Score for the school 451.391
Average Score for Queensland 491.655
% students at or above the national benchmark 87.5%
Grammar and Punctuation Average Score for the school 446.964
Average Score for Queensland 512.334
% students at or above the national benchmark 87.5%
Numeracy Average Score for the school 458.359
Average Score for Queensland 494.654
% students at or above the national benchmark 100%

Data Last Updated Mon Jun 26 2017

School Funding By Source
Income 2016

Australian Government recurrent funding$1,274,198

State/Territory Government recurrent funding$135,730

Fees, charges and parent contributions$72,316

Other private sources$24,088

Total gross income (excluding income from government capital grants)$1,506,332


Deductions
Deductions 2016

Income allocated to current capital projects$6,443

Income allocated to future capital projects and diocesan capital funds$0

Income allocated to debt servicing (including principal repayments and interest on loans)$0


Subtotal$6,443

Total net recurrent income$1,499,889


Schools And Colleges

There are 29 Catholic schools and colleges in the Diocese of Cairns. With the exception of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart School at Thursday Island and St Joseph’s Parish School, Weipa, all schools and colleges are within two hours driving time from Cairns.

The Cairns Diocese has two Prep to Year 12 colleges (St Andrew's Catholic College at Redlynch and MacKillop Catholic College, Mount Peter), 20 primary schools and 7 secondary colleges. Of those, St Augustine's College, Cairns is an All Boys college and St Monica's College, Cairns is an All Girls college. In addition to day schooling, St Augustine's offers boarding for students of St Augustine's and St Monica's. Mount St Bernard College, Herberton (MSB) is a day and boarding secondary college for boys and girls.

In 2016, Catholic Education opened two new schools to meet growing demand. MacKillop Catholic College is located in the Cairns southern growth corridor at Mount Peter and offers Prep to Year 3 in 2016. It will grow to full Prep to Year 12 status, with the possible early commencement of secondary in 2018. St Joseph’s Parish School opened in Weipa, offering Prep to Year 6.

In a strong initiative towards social justice engagement, Catholic Education opened a Flexi School for disengaged young people in Cairns and Cooktown in 2015. Holy Spirit College caters for students aged between 11 and 17 who have disengaged from education or for whom enrolling in a mainstream secondary school is not the best alternative. Holy Spirit College has capacity to enrol up to 52 students in Cairns and up to 38 in Cooktown, of whom up to 32 can be weekly boarders drawn from the wider community including HopeVale and WujalWujal.