Latest News

Confirmation Connection Prayer Night

Tonight we invite you to participate in our Confirmation Connection event via Zoom.

Details of the event:

Tuesday 2 June 6:30pm

In preparation for this event, you may like to prepare a special prayer space in your home.  This can be very simple using a coffee table or bench space, laying a cloth, displaying a cross, a candle and anything else you feel creates a prayerful space.  There will be an opportunity for parents to light a candle with their children during the event.

This event is intended to be a prayerful and reflective opportunity.  Information about the Confirmation Masses will be provided at a later date.

Virtual Cross Country Years 2-6 Weeks 5 and 6 Results

Please find attached the link to complete the form to sumbit times for weeks five and six. Results for weeks five and six must be submitted by Thursday the 4th of June. These will then be collected and the top performing student and the most improved student from each age group and gender will be shared with School Sport ACT. This will then be celebrated on the SSACT Facebook page and website.

Confirmation Connection Prayer Night

Next Tuesday 2 June at 6:30pm we invite you to participate in our Confirmation Connection event via Zoom.

In previous years we have gathered together in the Church for prayer night  in the lead up to the children receiving the Sacrament of Confirmation.  Even though we are currently unable to physically gather in these large numbers, and we aren't sure when we will be able to arrange for the candidates to receive their Sacrament, we believe it is very important that we maintain connection in any way we can.  Our Confirmation Connection prayer event will be an evening where we can all join in prayerful support of all involved in preparing the young people for this major step in their faith lives as they prepare to receive the Gifts of the Holy Spirit. 

Details of the event:

Tuesday 1 June 6:30pm

In preparation for this event, you may like to prepare a special prayer space in your home.  This can be very simple using a coffee table or bench space, laying a cloth, displaying a cross, a candle and anything else you feel creates a prayerful space.  There will be an opportunity for parents to light a candle with their children during the event.

This event is intended to be a prayerful and reflective opportunity.  Information about the Confirmation Masses will be provided at a later date.

As we all eagerly await the latest announcements from the government that will allow us to proceed with planning our Sacrament of Confirmation Masses, please keep the students, their families and those preparing them in your prayers. 

Pentecost Colouring Competition

Pentecost Colouring-in competition
Pentecost Sunday is Holy Spirit Parish's Feast Day and every year we celebrate by having some type of party and cake.  For this year’s event, our Parish Council had planned a fabulously free family event for all parishioners to enjoy.  Very sadly, we are not able to go ahead with this plan due to the lockdown and restrictions so we have decided to give away multiple prizes for both adults and children via this competition. We invite ALL to enter the competition, the young and the young at heart.  So get colouring now and help us celebrate our birthday in a different way!
All entries must be received by 5:00pm Saturday 30 May 2020. Winner announced at Pentecost Sunday Mass and on the Facebook page on Sunday 31 May 2020. Follow this link to find he colouring pages:

Virtual Cross Country - Years 2-6

A reminder that Virtual Cross Country times for are due tomorrow. Please use the following link to provide your week three and four times.

For further information please see the Week Two Newsletter. The link for weeks five and six will be provided next week.

Happy running! 

David Austin

Pick up Reminder

We have had a fabulous day here today and it was fantastic to see everyone back.

It felt like the first day of the year! 

Just some reminders regarding pick-up this afternoon:

1. We are maintaining normal pick-up procedures. Parents are welcome to meet students in the courtyard area (or other areas on the school grounds) but adults must practice social-distancing and are asked to collect your child and leave the grounds as quickly as possible;

2. Kindergarten students will be dismissed from class 5 minutes earlier (3:05) and will be supervised by staff on the grass area at the front of the school (adjacent to their classrooms);

3. No gathering with other parents after school please;

4.  it will no doubt be busy at drive-through/pick-up this afternoon so please be patient;

5. NO parents are to enter the classroom buildings, please.

Thanks for your continued support and understanding.

David Austin

Letter to 1MB Parents


We are looking forward to seeing many of you next week as we return to face to face teaching.

This is to advise that Mrs Shannon Malone-Brierley will be working from home for the next week. She will be back at school, face to face, from Monday 25 May 2020 (unless things change considerably in the ACT in the meantime.)

As you may be aware, Shannon’s son has Cystic Fibrosis and is highly compromised at the moment in the current health climate. We have insisted that Shannon continue remote teaching from home for Week 4.

Monday and Tuesday will be supervised by Mrs Sarah Higginbotham and Wednesday to Friday by Mrs Diana Jones. Shannon will continue to do her ‘daily lives’ and touch base with her students each day.

Thank you all for your acceptance and understanding of this matter. If you have any concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at school on 6255 7888.

Yours sincerely

David Austin

Kindergarten research study

I am a local paediatric nurse and St Clare of Assisi mum. I am writing to you about a research study I am running as part of my PhD through the University of Canberra: 'The Canberra Preschooler's Health and Nutrition Survey'. I am seeking assistance in sharing the study with your kinder families, perhaps through your newsletter or family app.

The purpose of the study is to get a snapshot of local preschool aged (4 or 5 years) children's health and nutrition. The survey includes questions about the child's dietary intake, general health and growth, chronic illnesses and use of medicines and supplements. It has full research ethics and CE Office approval (CE Office approval letter attached).
The results of the study will be used to identify any particular trends in this cohort, help guide priority setting for future research and inform local decision making. The survey takes about 15 minutes to complete and is accessible online or over the phone. The only criteria for participating is that the child is aged 4 or 5 years and lives in the ACT.  

I would be very grateful for any help you could give in sharing this study. I have attached the link



Your sincerely

Nicola Steenbergen

PhD candidate

DCO Webinars

Dear Parents,

This message arrived today from DCO today.

Join us for the next webinar in DCO Webinar series: Education and schooling during and after COVID-19.


“ADF families with school aged children are invited to join us for the next webinar in the DCO webinar series, Education and schooling during and after COVID. The webinar will be held on Wednesday, 20 May at 8pm AEST and will run for about an hour and will provide information about the support provided by our Education Liaison Officers, the role of Defence School Mentors and the funding available through our Education Assistance Scheme.

The webinar will also provide information about navigating the different state or territory education systems, and tips and strategies to manage learning at home and managing the change back to face-to-face classes at school. The webinar will finish off with a Q&A session for parents.

Don't forget to download the free Zoom app from the Apple iStore or Google Play so you can join us.”

Kind regards,

Taryn Ahern 



Getting ready for next week!

Good Shepherd Catholic Primary School will return to some sort of ‘normal’ from next Monday 18 May. School is open for the full return of students. Please communicate with your child’s teacher if they are not returning to school.

The ACT Chief Health Officer, Dr Kerryn Coleman wrote to parents last week stating “that students aged 3-19 years are not at increased risk in returning to face to face learning, and that good hygiene and environmental cleaning are the most important tools for reducing the risk of COVID-19 transmissions for staff and students in ACT schools.”

Dr Coleman goes on to say “The greatest risk of transmission in the school environment is between adults over 25 years of age. Staff and parents should avoid long periods of time in close contact with other adults. Adults, including parents, staff and volunteers should maintain physical distancing between themselves and other adults.”

I have a responsibility to ensure I provide a safe workplace for our staff. Adults have the greatest risk of transmission and I need to ensure the school has done all it can to protect our staff. All parents and visitors at school must follow the rules of social distancing and to only be on the school grounds if absolutely necessary.

Below are some Q and As that hopefully will inform you and assist us with a smooth transition back to Good Shepherd next week.

Can we (as parents) enter the school grounds?

Yes, parents and carers can enter the school grounds however, we are encouraging parents to drop students at the school gates in the morning. If you would like to wait in the courtyard or other areas for your child, please maintain social distancing with adults and leave as soon as you can (i.e no mingling with parents etc).

Can we enter school buildings?

Parents can only enter the Front Office area where social distancing measures are in place. No parents can enter the classroom buildings for the safety and well-being of staff. All adults entering the Front Office are asked to sign in at the Front Office and sanitise their hands. Signs will be displayed next week to inform parents. Please do not be offended if the staff remind you not to enter the school buildings.

If you wish to speak with your child’s teacher, please make appointments ahead of time and if possible, telephone or use email as the preferred method of contact.

What is happening with drop-off and pick-up?

We are maintaining current practices but encourage parents to use drop-off and pick-up to avoid adult contact. If you are parking and collecting your child, please leave the grounds as soon as you can and avoid contact with others.

Will Kindergarten still wait on the ‘fake grass’ every afternoon?

No. Kindergarten will now gather on the grass area near the carpark after school. We ask all Kindergarten parents to maintain 1.5 metres from each other when waiting.

What extra hygiene practices are in place at Good Shepherd for when the students return to school?

  • Increased cleaning schedules and resources onsite during the school day to wipe down and disinfect high-touch areas, including classrooms and common spaces, in addition to regular daily cleaning. Daily washing of playground equipment will occur.
  • Provision of extra hand sanitiser at key entry and exit locations across the school and within each classroom.
  • Provision of extra hand soap and so that students and staff can wash their hands frequently, particularly before and after recess and lunchtimes.
  • Frequent announcements and increased signage around the school to ensure students are practising good personal hygiene. 
  • Communal bubblers will be turned off. Please ensure your child brings a suitable water bottle to school each day.

What if my child has cold or flu-like symptoms?

No students are to attend school if they are showing any cold or flu-like symptoms.  They must remain at home and stay away from school until they are no longer showing symptoms or have attended a GP who has instructed that they are fit and safe to return. 

My child has a medical condition that places him/her at greater risk for return. What should I do?

If your child has a medical condition that places him or her at greater risk from a return to face-to-face teaching at this time, please contact your classroom teacher as soon as possible, so that we can discuss their needs in greater detail and develop an appropriate plan for these circumstances. 

What if my child becomes unwell during the school day?

Our usual first aid/sickbay procedures apply and you will be contacted to collect your child should he or she become unwell at school. We ask that if you are contacted to collect your child, that you do so as soon as possible so we can limit the number of students waiting in our sickbay. Our front office staff are first aid trained and have access to appropriate Personal Protective Equipment. (PPE) 

Will there be large gatherings such as assemblies this Term?

There will be no assemblies or large gatherings of cohorts of students for the remainder of this term.  An exception to this is an evacuation or emergency procedure that may be required. (Fire alarm etc.)

My child is not sick and does not have any medical conditions. Am I able to choose to keep him/her at home?

As a parent, you may choose to keep your child at home during this time.  However, please be aware that teachers will only be providing face-to-face lessons from the 18th of May and will not be providing separate online, remote learning.  Teachers will organise learning to be available through Seesaw and Google Classroom but will not be doing live check-ins or lessons remotely. If you intend to keep your child at home please contact your Classroom Teacher to discuss this in detail so a plan can be organised. 

What’s happening during recess and lunch periods-  are children socialising all together in the playground or separated per year group?

No, Health advice tells us we can maintain practices and we want to keep this as ‘normal’ as we can for our students. Staff will inform students to maintain social distancing habits, particularly at playtimes. There will be no staggered recess or lunch; we want to maintain as much ‘normal’ as we can ensuring social distancing measures are maintained.

What uniform is to be worn?

School winter uniform (Terms 2 and 3) must be worn by all students on site.  Sports days for individual year levels for Term 2 are the same as Term 1.

Kindergarten: Mondays and Wednesdays

Year 1: Tuesdays and Fridays

Year 2: Tuesdays and Fridays

Year 3: Tuesdays and Thursdays

Year 4: Mondays and Fridays

Year 5: Mondays and Wednesdays

Year 6: Mondays and Thursdays

Is Team Kids (Before and After School Care) running as normal?

Yes, normal procedures apply for Before and After School Care. They are also following strict social distancing and hygiene/sanitisation measures. Please contact Team Kids directly if you have any questions.

What if the situation arises that students will not be able to attend onsite schooling again?

If a situation arises where it is deemed not safe by health authorities for students or staff to be onsite, we would be able to pivot back to our comprehensive online remote learning program as required.  As per all our decisions, we continue to be informed by relevant health authorities in response to circumstances that may exist at that time.

If I wish to discuss the transition back to face-to-face learning at Good Shepherd, whom should I contact?

It is important to remember that the COVID-19 pandemic is not over; rather, it is now entering a new phase of response. It is essential that all members of the Good Shepherd community are fully committed to practising the infection mitigation strategies that we outline to ensure a safe return to school.

Please contact me: . Alternatively, for specific matters involving your child, please contact your child’s teacher. 

David Austin