St Joseph's Catholic Primary School is a community in which children,
parents and staff seek to maximise learning opportunities in a
supportive and secure environment. We offer:
St. Joseph’s Catholic Primary School is a Christ-centred community,
within the Bunbury Parish, which aspires to educate and develop the
whole child in a caring, Catholic environment, recognising and
respecting the uniqueness, dignity and the rights of others.
We would like to recognise the traditional owners of this land, the
Noongar people, on which we build our community today.
As a Catholic School religious education underpins all our curriculum
areas. We support students to develop a personal relationship with God
through our teaching and learning, especially in the way we live and
the examples we share.
Our Early Years Learning Program is governed by the Early Years
Learning Framework (EYLF), West Australian Curriculum and the National
EYLF beliefs about young children and learning are based around the ‘3
Bs’, Belonging, Being and Becoming
Belonging: Knowing where and with whom you belong.
Being: Is a time to be, to seek and make meaning of the world.
Becoming: Reflects the process of rapid and significant learning about
The Early Years Learning Programme at St Joseph’s Catholic Primary
School seeks to provide enriched environments for the students in years
Pre K-2. The program is designed to benefit the whole child. This
encompasses the physical, personal, social, emotional, cognitive and
spiritual aspects of every child.
The staff acknowledge that families are the child’s first and most
influential teachers and strive to continue to build on what has been
taught at home. We have developed an environment which encourages and
supports the reciprocal relationships and partnerships for learning
between child, family, school and the wider community. We create a
welcoming social and culturally inclusive environment where all
families are encouraged to participate and contribute to their child’s
learning and development.
Our Early Childhood Educators recognise each child’s unique
capabilities, developmental stages and learning styles. The programme
is inclusive of gender, ethnicity, intellectual and physical ability.
Through observation and assessment of students’ knowledge and abilities
educators make informed decisions to enable children to become
confident, life long learners.
The St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School Early Years Learning Programme
has high expectations for every student. We strive to maintain equity
for all and foster acceptance of others. We provide rich holistic
opportunities for students to learn in a safe, healthy, positive and
stimulating learning environment. We respect the diverse backgrounds of
all our students and make every effort to maintain collaboration and
partnerships to enrich and further build community.
Early Years Schooling - CEWA
In all curriculum areas, St Joseph's strives to provide students
learning environments which are motivating, active and collaborative.
Classrooms are inclusive places where students feel safe to take
reasonable risks whilst acquiring the creative and critical thinking
skills they need to participate fully in society as they grow and
develop. We continually utilise technology to enhance learning, expand
horizons and facilitate communication.
Students at St Joseph's study nine curriculum learning areas: Religion
and the eight learning areas of the Western Australian Curriculum. When
appropriate, the General Capabilities and Cross Curricula Priorities
are addressed through individual curriculum areas. Student learning and
progress is closely monitored and classroom programs are tailored to be
directly effective in addressing needs.
Religious Education is foundational in our Catholic school and underpins
our worldview. Students learn about the Catholic faith and traditions
through the Catholic Education Western Australia "Units of Work". This
curriculum teaches concepts developmentally and sequentially.
In the English Learning Area, students learn about the English language:
how it works and how to use it effectively. They develop an
understanding of the ways in which language operates as a social
process and how to use language in a variety of forms and situations.
They learn to speak, listen, view, read and write effectively.
In the Mathematics Learning Area, students learn to use ideas about
Number and Algebra, Measurement and Geometry, Statistics and
Probability. They learn to use mathematical ways of representing
patterns and relationships, to describe, interpret and reason about
their social and physical world. Mathematics plays a key role in the
development of students' numeracy, assists learning across the
curriculum and provides foundations for future civic and recreational
In the Science Learning Area students learn to investigate, understand
and communicate about the biological, physical and technical world and
value the processes that support life on our planet. Science helps
students to become critical thinkers by encouraging them to use
evidence to evaluate the use of science in society and its application
in daily life. Students are encouraged to collaborate and think
creatively as they make sense of the world.
Health and Physical Education provides students with an understanding of
health issues and the skills needed for confident participation in
sport and recreational activities. Participation enables students to
make responsible decisions about health and physical activity, and to
promote their own and others' well-being, resilience and relationships.
The HASS Learning Area develops students' understanding of how
individuals and groups live together and interact with their
environment. Students develop a respect for cultural heritage and a
commitment to social justice, the democratic process and ecological
sustainability. They develop the ability to ask questions, think
critically, make informed decisions, propose solutions and communicate
In The Arts Learning Area students develop creative skills, critical
appreciation and knowledge of artistic techniques and technologies in
drama, music and visual arts and combinations of arts forms. The Arts
develop students' sense of personal and cultural identity and equips
them for lifelong involvement in, and the appreciation of the arts.
Students have weekly lessons with specialist teachers in the Visual
Arts and Music Learning Areas.
In the Languages Other Than English (LOTE) Learning Area, students learn
to communicate effectively in Indonesian. They gain an understanding of
other societies, the ability to interact with people and cultures other
than their own, and practical skills which they can use in future
social, cultural and vocational areas.
In the Technology Learning Area, students apply knowledge, skills,
experience and resources to develop solutions that are designed to meet
the changing needs of individuals, societies and environments. In
Design and Technologies, students become innovative, adaptable and
reflective as they select and use appropriate materials and information
to create solutions that consider the short and long-term impact on
societies and environments. Through Digital Technologies students use
computational thinking in class via personal or class iPads and during
weekly computer lessons with a specialist teacher.
Students are given the opportunity to attend educational excursions each
year. At St Joseph's we recognise the importance of providing these
learning experiences in the wider community to broaden and extend
knowledge. Every endeavour is made to keep excursion costs to a
Homework is a reinforcement and extension of work encountered in the
classroom. It provides opportunity for children to practise and revise
skills they have been learning. Homework also gives students the
opportunity to develop home study skills.
We believe that to develop the whole child it is imperative to broaden
their educational outlook by including a wide variety of activities and
experiences. At St Joseph's, as well as the usual classroom lessons,
students have many opportunities in specialist areas.
Programmes in these areas are developed, delivered and evaluated by
specialist teaching staff.
Once a week our students from Year One to Year Six engage in fun,
creative and highly stimulating visual arts activities. These lessons
are facilitated by specialist Art teachers.
Our new STEAM area is staffed by a dedicated specialist teacher who encourages students
to think out of the box and use a hands-on approach to solving a range of challenges.
St Joseph's has a specialist teaching program for Physical Education.
Students attend weekly lessons, learning skills for a variety of
physical activities and sports. Our focus is very much on enjoyment,
participation, fitness and skills for life. Students from Years One to
Six participate in in-term swimming lessons and the school has an
annual Swimming Carnival for students in Years Four to Six.
St Joseph's also participates in the Interschool Swimming Carnival,
competing against a number of schools in the local area. Our annual
Athletics Carnival is held in fourth term, involving students from Pre
Primary to Year Six. This is followed by participation in an
Interschool Athletics competition with other schools in the area.
Students attend music lessons with specialist teachers every week and
have weekly singing practice as a whole school. St Joseph's also offers
formal training in choral singing with a Junior, Year Five and Senior
Choir. These award winning choirs participate annually in the Bunbury
Eisteddfod and The Performing Arts Festival in Perth. They also sing
regularly at sacramental Masses.
Each week, students from Years One to Six attend lessons in the
Indonesian language with a specialist Indonesian teacher.
Students from Years Four to Six who demonstrate exceptional capabilities
through a formal testing process are invited to participate in the
Enrichment Program. This program gives these students further learning
opportunities to extend their natural abilities.
It includes the development of cognitive skills, e.g. critical
thinking, problem solving, creativity etc. Students are withdrawn from
their normal class for their lesson.
At St Joseph’s we rejoice in diversity and foster the dignity,
self-esteem and integrity of each child. We acknowledge the various
learning needs of students, and are committed to providing rigorous,
meaningful and engaging learning experiences where all students can
reach their potential and delight in each other’s success.
The most effective means of supporting student learning is through a
collaborative, strategic, whole school approach that directs support to
different levels of need in response to assessment data. With this in
mind, we all – Teachers, Education Assistants, Principal, Assistant
Principals, Learning Support/Students with Disabilities Coordinator,
Parents, School Psychologist, Students with Disabilities Consultant,
Outside Agencies – work as a Professional Learning Community to
identify and coordinate the learning support needs of our students.
Together we develop, implement, monitor and evaluate educational
programs and processes by focusing on systems (what we do to
support educators), practices (what we do to support students)
and data (what we use to inform our systems and practices).
The crucial elements for supporting learners with diverse needs include
high expectations for all students; deep knowledge of the whole
child; relevant, appropriately challenging content; and
focussed, suitable pedagogy. We aim to ensure that the
needs of all students in the school are met using a three- tiered model
of support addressing universal, targeted and intensive supports for
students and educators. This model is called Response to Intervention
(RTI) and comprises three waves of support:
Wave 1 – Daily quality, differentiated
teaching in the classroom, supported by whole-school policies and
frameworks, that is designed to move all learners from where they are
to where they need to be.
Wave 2 – Wave 1 plus additional,
time-limited, tailored intervention support programs that are
identified in a Curriculum Adjustment Plan (CAP). This support is
targeted according to need, is delivered by teachers or teaching
assistants who have the skills to help learners achieve their learning
objectives, and progress is closely tracked for impact. This
intervention helps children apply their learning in mainstream lessons,
and ensures that motivation and progress in learning are sustained. The
expectation is for learners to be back on track to meet or exceed
national expectations at the end of the intervention.
Wave 3 – Wave 1 plus increasingly
individualised programs, based on independent evidence of what works.
This may involve support from a specialist teacher or highly trained EA
to support learners towards the achievement of very specific targets.
At St Joseph’s Response to Intervention (RTI) underpins how we teach
all our students. This means that students receive differentiated
teaching at class level, extra support through small group intervention
if necessary or one-on-one coaching.
Toe by Toe is a progressive program that helps students to identify
letter and sound groups, and teaches them how to effectively read
words. It moves logically and methodically until the students recognise
sounds proficiently and read more and more difficult words and
sentences. We have found that Toe by Toe improves students’ reading
significantly and gives them greater confidence in their reading and
spelling, which transfers to other learning areas. Toe by Toe involves
a coach giving one-on-one help to students for approximately ten
minutes per day, four/five times a week between 8.30 and 9.00am. It is
supervised by EAs and runs in an atmosphere of mentoring and support.
Students new to the program purchase their Toe by Toe book from the
school. Any family having financial difficulty with the cost of the
book may access some financial assistance. The program is run almost
entirely by parent and community volunteers and we always appreciate
when people offer their time.
MiniLit (for junior students) and MacqLit (for middle and senior
primary students) are systematic, synthetic phonics programs that
support students who need to revisit their phonological foundations.
They help students identify letter and sound groups, teach them to
effectively read words and support them in transferring this knowledge
to their writing. Research has found that both programs improve
students’ reading and writing significantly, giving them greater
confidence in their literacy. MiniLit and MacqLit involve a coach
giving help to small groups of four to five students for approximately
40-60 minutes per day, four times a week. Groups usually run during the
class literacy block in the MiniLit room and replace the work students
would normally do during this time. Students are provided with the
necessary books by the school.
At St Joseph’s our assessment and reporting is based on the mandated
SCSA Pre-Primary to Year 10: Teaching, Assessing and Reporting Policy.
We promote equity and excellence so that our students can be engaged,
confident, creative and successful learners who are active and informed
citizens, equipped to reach their full potential. Accordingly, all
staff have agreed to an annual literacy and numeracy assessment
calendar so they can interpret and discuss data with their peers and
use it to guide their decisions about all students and to provide
differentiated instruction that meets every student’s needs.
Standardised testing is used at designated intervals throughout the year
to create a baseline of accurate judgement about students’ progress and
to make decisions about programmes which are needed throughout the
school. We reflect on the suitability of the assessment tools we use
and are open to alternative and more suitable assessments. Teacher
constructed assessments are also used within classes to ascertain
progress through units of work and to corroborate other collected
Common DOTT provision and allocated staff meetings enable staff to
collaborate when moderating and identifying student achievement and
areas of concern. Students with learning difficulties especially need
regular assessments to guide their learning. Curriculum Adjustment
Plans, Individual Education Plans and Personalised Learning Plans are
implemented to articulate the strengths, areas of need, learning goals
and modified programmes for students requiring differentiation.
Students and parents are provided feedback through student diaries,
online communication, meetings, Learning Journey evenings and formal