Notes explaining a child's absence must be sent to the class teacher as soon as possible after or prior to an absence. A phone call to the front office to indicate a child will be absent is a good safety measure.
Please do not send children to school if they are unwell. Parents will be contacted as soon as possible in the event of a child falling ill or sustaining injury at school.
Communication between school and home is highly valued. Parents are asked to make an appointment for any discussion with the Principal, Deputy Principal, Counsellor or Teachers. An appointment will be arranged at the earliest possible time and attention will be given immediately to urgent issues.
Arrival at School
Please ensure children arrive at school in time to commence lessons at 9:00am. A late arrival is very disruptive and often your child will miss important announcements. Children should not arrive before 8:40am as there is no staff supervision before this time.
Kindergarten - Year 6: Thursday 2:00pm in the Hall. Assemblies are run by the School Leaders with the assistance of Executive staff. Parents are welcome to attend assemblies, particularly if their child or class is presenting an item. Assemblies will include time for celebration of children's achievements.
Aussie & Effort Assemblies: A Whole School Assembly is held at 2:00pm on the first Thursday of each month in the Hall to celebrate the Aussie of the Month and Effort Achievers.
Merit Certificates and similar awards are presented at weekly assemblies. These awards encourage children and provide positive reinforcement for achievement. End of year Achievement Awards are presented to students in each class together with Versatility and Citizenship Awards for Year 6 students who have shown exceptional all-round achievement.
After School Care
Out of hours school care is available in the Hall from 3:00pm until 6:00pm. This is operated by the Woden Community Service who may be contacted on 6282 2644 or 6281 1169. The service also assists with before school and holiday care.
Before School Care
Out of hours school care is available in the Hall from 7.15am until 9.00am. This is operated by Woden Community Services.
Bicycles and scooters are to be placed in the bike area between the Library and the Paterson building and should be locked. Once locked up, children should move to the playground. Helmets should be worn for riding to and from school and for any class activities on bicycles.
Research has shown that for safety reasons children under ten years should not ride bicycles on the road unaccompanied.
While we endeavour to take all care, the school cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage to bicycles or scooters.
Children are able to deposit money with the Commonwealth Bank at the school. The school receives a small commission on all transactions. Forms for new accounts are available at the front office. Currently Wednesday is School Banking Day.
Children living out of the Garran area may come to school by bus. Special school buses come from the Tuggeranong Valley and Isaacs areas. ACTION will publish timetables in the Canberra Times. ACTION may be contacted on 13 17 10. The ACTION website is also very useful.
Clean Schools (14kb)
Court Orders/Parenting Agreements
Please discuss any special circumstances with the Principal and lodge copies of these orders/agreements with the Business Manager. They are treated confidentially in our school.
The Curriculum is divided into Key Learning Areas (KLAs). These are:-
- The Arts
- Studies of Society and the Environment
- Health and Physical Education
- Languages Other Than English
When teachers discuss your child's academic progress at school, either at interview or through the student report, it is these outcomes which form the basis of the discussion. Copies of curriculum documents are available for loan, however it is probably of more benefit to parents to discuss these at the initial Parent Information Evening or at interview with your child/children's teacher. The ACT DET has undertaken curriculum renewal, and published its Every Chance to Learn document.
The curriculum is enhanced in many ways through the teacher's individual interests and expertise. The following extra curriculum activities are available:-
Brass Bands During the first term of Year Five, all children are assessed for inclusion in the Instrumental Music Program ACT (IMPACT). Twenty two children are selected to receive an instrument and tuition supplied by an itinerant music teacher. Garran is a brass school and provides a teacher to assist with this program. Children are expected to remain in the program for two years. Contributed costs cover tuition, music scores, insurance, buses for combined practices and repairs. This is a most economical and effective program and students selected are most fortunate. There is a Year 5 Band and a Year 6 Band.
Accelerated Learning Program These classes have been established to provide a significantly differentiated curriculum for children of high intellectual ability or children who would benefit from a different learning approach. Children are selected by a placement panel after reviewing information provided by teachers, parents and other relevant tests. Please contact the Deputy Principal if you wish any further information or to discuss placement of your child in this program.
Recorder All students in Year 2 learn the recorder. All students in Year 3 to 6 have to option to join recorder ensembles. Students are selected for twelve months and will be tutored in the descant, alto or tenor recorders.
The School Canteen operates Monday to Friday. It is located next to the entrance of the Library. Lunch orders should be completed at the canteen before school. The Canteen will be open at recess and 25 minutes at lunchtime. Lunch orders will be collected by classroom monitors from the canteen at 12:50pm.
Boy and girl school captains are elected each year by students from Year 3 - 6. Four school leaders are also elected and these six students take responsibility for running the school assemblies and assist with other public functions and activities. They act as ambassadors for Garran Primary School.
Crossing the Road
Staff encourage children to use the school crossing to cross the road. Parents should model this safety behaviour for their children.
Please take care when using the school car park. When dropping children at school please do so at the kerb in front of and on the school side - children are able to walk from the footpath, and the congestion in the car park is very dangerous for children. To ease congestion, perhaps you could meet your children in the Scout Hall car park, or come a few minutes after the bell to allow for easier picking up. If you are visiting the school, please park in parking places and not in the car park turning circle.
Change of Contact Numbers
Contact numbers and addresses need to be kept up to date with the Front Office. Children can be distressed unnecessarily when sickness or illness occurs and the contact number is out of date.
The counsellor is available to discuss individual children's issues and progress and is on premises on Wednesdays between 9am and 10am and all day on Thursdays and Fridays. Teachers may refer a child to the counsellor, in which case parents will be notified. Parents wishing to meet with the counsellor should make an appointment through the front office on 6205 5844.
If your child comes home with an issue relating to school matters please listen to your child, then speak to the teacher to clarify the situation if necessary. Should you want to discuss the matter further, the Principal or Deputy Principal are available and happy to assist in solving difficulties.
Dogs on School Grounds
Under Department of Urban Services policies, dogs are not permitted on school grounds.
Section 42 of the Act defines places where dogs are prohibited. These include the grounds of a child care centre, preschool, primary school, high school or secondary college during school hours or when school sport including training is being conducted unless the keeper of the dog resides in the grounds, or a dog is taken into the grounds with the approval of the principal.
Dogs are prohibited within 10 metres of anything designed for play by children in a public place if children are playing on it and on playing fields anywhere where sport or training for sport is being played.
To enrol in Kindergarten, children must be 5 years of age by April 30. Children living within the Priority Enrolment Area, Garran, O'Malley and Phillip north of Hindmarsh Drive have priority to enrol at Garran Primary.
Other enrolments will be considered dependant on school enrolment numbers. Our enrolment procedures are consistent with departmental policies.
The Deputy Principal who is responsible for enrolments, will interview parents before enrolment. Follow the link to the ACT Department of Education's Policy: Priority Enrolment Areas.
Excursions may be planned as a culmination of a theme of study, part of study area or for a specific social experience. Any family having difficulty in paying for a particular excursion should contact either the Principal or Deputy Principal to make alternative arrangements. Teachers will notify parents at the Information Evening about camps and excursions for the class group.
Parents will be notified well in advance about excursions. Permission notes must be returned for all out of school excursions before students can attend. Link to the ACT Department of Education Policy on Excursions
Enquiries can be made through: firstname.lastname@example.org
To ensure access and equity in the provision of education, like all government schools Garran Primary has established an Equity Fund to support the needs of students who might not otherwise be in a position to take advantage of the opportunities provided by their schools.
Several activities will be held during the year to raise funds for the P&C Association to provide supplementary resources for the children. The Garran Gazette will keep you informed regarding fund-raising activities and your attendance at P&C monthly meetings will keep you up-to-date with information. The P&C Association sends home a newsletter as well. Parents are encouraged to attend P&C meetings.
The School Captains conduct a Garran Government meeting each week. Classes from Year K - 6 elect representatives, for one term, to attend government meetings. The Garran Government is an important key voice for the student population.
A house system operates within the school for sporting and other events. Children are allocated to one of the houses on enrolment - Dennis (blue), Gilmore (green), Hudson (red), Palmer (yellow). The house names, decided when the school was established, represent prominent English poets and writers, literature being an area of intense interest for Sir Robert Garran. Many Garran streets are similarly named.
For homework to have value it must be relevant, achievable and interesting. It should be a way of involving parents in their child's education, not as research assistants but as partners.
Homework may take many forms: oral and written activities, collecting, reading, constructing, games or discussing TV programs. Apart from what is set by the teacher it all depends on how involved you want to be in your child's education. Building the relationship is number one. Praise their efforts, set realistic expectations and let them enjoy learning.
Under the Homework Policy set by the School Board children in Kindergarten to Year 2 should have occasional homework set at the teacher's discretion. For the middle classes (Years 3 and 4) homework should take no more than 20 minutes, while for senior students it increases to 30 minutes per night.
The ACT Department of Health advises that all children attending school in the ACT should be immunised against diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, polio, measles, mumps, rubella and HIB (Haemophilus influenza type b). We would ask that you check your child's present immunisation status to see whether it is complete for his/her age. ACT Public Health regulations require schools to request proof of up-to-date immunisation when enrolling. Failure to provide this may result in your child being excluded from school should an outbreak of an infectious disease occur. A copy of exclusion periods for students with infectious disease is available here. Parents are asked to adhere closely to these requirements unless medical advice to the contrary is provided in writing.
Integration of Children from the Learner Support Unit (LSU)
Garran has one class of children with intellectual disability. These children are integrated wherever possible into mainstream classes.
Interviews regarding progress or information that may impact on your child's learning may be held at any time at the request of a parent or teacher. An appointment is essential to ensure a suitable, mutually convenient time.
An information evening for parents will be arranged about the 4th week of Term One. Each unit will explain to parents their organisation, expectations and any plans for excursions etc. Costly excursions such as camps and excursions will be notified at this stage to allow parents to budget for them.
Children are accepted into Kindergarten if they turn 5 years of age on or before 30 April. Early entry to school must be negotiated with the Director of Schools.
Leaving the School
Please inform the front office staff when students are moving interstate or transferring to another school in the ACT.
Ensure all articles of clothing are labelled with your child's name. Lost items are collected and if named, owners are easily traced. There is a lost property box in the foyer of the Franklin Building containing found items.
The Library opening times are: 8.30-9.00am Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday and 1.00-1.25pm Monday to Friday.
Children are encouraged to borrow books any time during the day when the Library is open. Children may borrow books for up to two weeks at a time.
To enable specific projects to be completed a library fund has been established for which the contributions are tax-deductible. Donations over $2:00 paid to the Library Fund are tax deductible, and the amount suggested per family is $50.
Lists of items recommended for student use will be sent home during the first week of the school year. Parents having difficulty paying should contact the Principal, Deputy Principal or Business Manager. Payments can be made using EFTPOS or Credit Card (Visa, Mastercard and Bankcard only).
Children who need to take medication should bring their medication to the front office for safe keeping. It should be accompanied by written instructions from their doctor and should be clearly labelled. Apart from asthma puffers, medication must not be kept in children's bags. Follow the link to the ACT Department of Education policy on Administration of Medication
Newsletter Parent Communication
The Garran Gazette Newsletter is sent home via email every Thursday. Reports on class excursions, special events, P&C Association, School Board and any group or individual work of note (including illustrations) may be included in the Gazette. This newsletter is the main conveyor of the latest information from the school to parents. Link to our on line Newsletter
All permission notes for activities outside the school must be returned to the school signed by a parent/carer. Students cannot attend an excursion without a signed permission note.
There is no supervision before 8:40am. From 8:30am supervision is provided on the Paterson and Franklin playgrounds and in the Library. In case of an emergency between 8:40am-9:00am assistance can be obtained from the Front Office or Staff Room.
Recess: 11:00 - 11:20am - Staff members supervise the playground.
Lunch: 1:00 -1:50 - Staff members supervise the playground and the Library.
Term 1 Parent Information Evening/Detailed Parent Teacher interview in week 9.
Term 2 Detailed student report sent home.
Term 3 Learning Journey
Term 4 Detailed Student Report sent home.
Garran Primary follows the the ACT Department of Education guidelines for Risk Management.
Developing school and class rules is a collaborative effort and are designed for the safety and security of the whole community. School and class rules are regularly discussed during class meetings, Garran Goverment meetings and assemblies and should be clear to all students. They are:
• bullying and harassment, physical violence or verbal abuse is unacceptable
• building passes are required to enter school buildings during recess and lunch
• appropriate sunsmart hats must be worn on the playground
• bicycle racks, canteen and front of the main school building are no play areas
Student Welfare and Management An Overview
Garran Primary School's student management policy aims to develop positive relationships between students, teachers, parents and the community. Our school provides a caring learning environment which recognizes the strong partnership between home and school, seeking to develop each child intellectually, socially and physically towards his/her potential.
Staff at Garran recognise the immense value of a vibrant, meaningful, differentiated curriculum that fully engages all students in their learning. By developing programs that are inclusive of all students, teachers minimize the possibility of disengagement and conflict. At Garran Primary School, we strongly believe that positive school relationships maximize students' potential for learning, emotional development, social growth and achieving their personal best.
Everyone in the school community has rights and responsibilities. Through our Civics & Citizenship and Values Education programs, we aim to teach students about their rights and responsibilities as they strive to become responsible citizens in our democratic society.
Standing in a lovely valley
Beneath the skies of blue,
Shines the Primary School of Garran
Clear for all to view.
Lift the chorus, speed it onward
Ever loyal be.
Listen as we sing its motto
Garran Primary School follows the Sun Protection Policy Guidelines for ACT Schools, "No Hat-No Play". A key requirement of the Sun Protection Policy is for students to wear hats which protect the face, neck and ears whenever the students are outside. Students without suitable hats are not permitted to play outside at recess and lunchtime. Parents are requested to buy a school hat from the clothing pool (or the school office) and also provide a sun protection factor (SPF) 15 plus water resistant sunscreen. The school has provided additional outdoor seating and tree planting as measures to support the policy.
The school operates on a four term system with holidays set by the ACT Department of Education and Training. Link to Term Dates
Lessons commence 9:00 am
Recess 11:00am - 11:20am
Lunch 12:50pm - 1:50pm
Home 3:00 pm
Children should not arrive before 8:40am as there is no supervision available before this time. For safety reasons it is important that children DO NOT play on equipment before or after school hours.
Extra curricular classes are held out of school hours. The programs vary with the availability of teachers. These programs are facilitated by the school and are a private arrangement between your tutor. Some of the activities include: key board, dance, piano and chess. Ask at the front office for more information regarding enrolment of these activities.
Children's toys, unless specifically asked for by a teacher, should be kept at home. It is difficult for children to care for these properly at school.
Garran Primary is proud of its school uniform and children are expected to wear school uniform each day. The Board policy strongly encourages students to wear school uniform and must be worn on excursions.
The clothing pool is operated by parent volunteers and current opening times are: Monday of the odd weeks, 8.45-9.15am and Wednesdays of the even weeks, 2.45-3.15pm.
Suitable shoes are essential. Students require shoes the have an enclosed toe such as sneakers, leather shoes or boots. Well fitting shoes are important as ill fitting shoes can have negative long term effects on children's feet. Open toed shoes such as sandals can result in injuries on the playground and are therefore discouraged.
Earrings: small sleepers or studs may be worn. Children will be asked to remove inappropriate earrings for their own personal safety.
Parents are most welcome to assist with many school tasks and classroom activities. Teachers will send home notes seeking assistance for specific activities and at the Information Evening, teachers will advise of the assistance they would need. Children enjoy seeing their parents hepling at the school and it provides an excellent avenue of communication.
Parent help in the canteen is also very welcome. Under ACT Department of Education's policy, volunteers are required to complete a "volunteers in schools" form and must sign in and out on each visit using the sign in book located at the front office. Please ring our business manager on 6205 5844 if you wish to volunteer your services.
Voluntary Contributions - Departmental Statement
For many years, students have benefited from the additional resources provided through voluntary financial contributions from parents, carers and other citizens. These contributions have assisted the school to conduct additional programs and activities and purchase educational material.
The School Board has suggested the following contribution will directly support the educational programs by the school. This voluntary contribution may be made in full or in part or by instalments. These contributions have been used to purchase materials for used across the all KLA's as well as in the Library, Information Technology, Science, Health and PE Visual and Performimng Arts.
Section 27 of the Educational Act 2004 however clearly states that:
a) each contribution must be voluntary;
b) a child is not to be refused benefits or services because the child's parents do not make a contribution;
c) a child is not harassed for contributions;
d) any record of contribution is confidential.
Schools may offer to facilitate some specific optional items, activities and services for which parents may be required to pay if they want their child to access them. There is further information on the ACT Department of Education's Statement: Requesting Financial Contributions from parents.
Whilst the ACT Department of Education and Training (DET) provides a per capita grant to cover basic requirements of students, considerably more finance is required to maintain the standard of education which we have been able to attain at Garran Primary. Parents are asked to provide a Voluntary Contribution to enable the purchase of many of the items which the school uses for the children. Some of the past purchases have been:-
- play equipment
- library books and resources
- DVD recorders, video camera
- reading sets
- television sets
- guided readers and home readers
- sports equipment
This year's voluntary contribution is set and the amount of contribution suggested per year is :-
$60 for one child
$100 for two children
$125 for three or more children.
Voluntary Contribution Form (34kb)
Water Saving Initiatives
Garran Primary School is undertaking a number of initiatives in an effort to save our precious water resource.
The Australian Government's Community Water Grants and the ACT Department of Education's school upgrade program co-funded the installation of dual-flush toilets, timed low-flow tapware and low water use urinals throughout the school in 2008.
Drip irrigation is installed in all gardens and low water use, locally endemic plants are used in landscaping projects.
Hand watering with tank water is also carried out where possible.
It is anticipated that the savings in water use will be around two million litres per year on pre-upgrade figures.
Read more about Garran Primary's water saving initiatives.