St Monica's Primary remains committed to supporting all students whatever their learning needs.
We understand that each child is unique and learns in a variety of ways and at different rates. Our commitment to improving the learning outcomes for each student ensures that strengths are nurtured in a Christian environment.
In some cases, children have learning difficulties or disabilities that require additional programs and support. Through pastoral care, our learning support teams are able to meet students’ individual needs.
Social Skills Program
St Monica's Primary follows a Social Skills program that looks at bullying in Term 1; respect of self, others, the environment and God in Term 2; the development of skills in group situations in Term 3; and an emphasis on personal safety and strategies to deal with a variety of situations in Term 4.
Our Social Skills program K-6, is guided by the PDHPE syllabus and the Talking and Listening Component of the English syllabus. We also incorporate the Peer Support Program which complements and reinforces the school program.
Our school community strongly supports the intellectual, physical, emotional, and spiritual growth of each student. Families are supported in times of sickness or grief through the Parent Representative Group, providing transport, meals or home visits.
Children who may need hospital care are given a gift basket of goodies and we celebrate the birthday, of a relative or personal best of students through our newsletter.
Seasons for Growth
Seasons for Growth is a support program offered to children who experience grief or loss through death of a relative or friend, marriage separation or divorce. The program is offered to all children from Kindergarten to Year 6 and is an 8 week program followed by 2 'reconnector' meetings later in the year.
Gifted and Talented
We understand that not every child learns in the same way, and that many children have additional specific interests.
Over the past three years, a Gifted and Talented program has been initiated within the K-2 module involving research skills and literacy studies. This year, Years 1-4 are involved in a variety of contracts based around themes, novels and special interests. The children have the opportunity to present their projects to their group and classmates.
The aim of peer support at St Monica's is to provide an opportunity for children to work together in small K-6 groups allowing them to develop a peer network.
The program begins with a leadership training program of the Year 6 children. The children learn how to manage a small group, recognise and be able to cater for differences in their group, as well as learn a variety of strategies and games that can be used in each session.
The program consists of 5 sessions. Each session focuses on the social skills from the social skills program.
Session 1 - Getting to Know You
Session 2 - Including Others
Session 3 - Good Listener
Session 4 - Communicating
Session 5 - Being a Good Friend
The children in each group are led by their Year 6 leader. The classroom teacher provides support to the Year 6 leader if needed.
At the end of the 5 sessions, the Peer Support Groups participate in a Mass together.
It is the belief and practice of the staff of St Monica's, that wherever possible, children with special needs should be integrated into the mainstream classroom. The philosophy is one of inclusion--inclusion meaning recognising the importance and dignity of individual students. A variety of models is used from team teaching to group or individual, and withdrawal, depending on the needs of the student and teachers involved.
The responsibility for children with special needs rests with the whole school. The Special Education teacher and Teacher's Assistant are key people in the whole-school approach to children with special needs.
Peer Reading Tutor Program
The Peer Reading Tutor Program is a reading program run by trained Year 6 tutors. The sessions run three mornings each week for 20 minutes from 8.30am - 8.50am.
Tutors in the program are supervised by the Special Education teacher, and the children who are assisted with their reading, are selected from Years 1 and 2.
This program has been successfully run for the past 5 years.
Aspect Unit - Learning Support Centre
The LSC is one of ten satellite classes supported from the Western Sydney School for children with Autism. St Monica's, as the host school, works in partnership with Aspect by providing integration involving spiritual, social, academic and sporting opportunities.
The class is a primary class for children aged from nine to twelve years and is supported by a teacher and teacher's aide.
Integration is accommodated in the mainstream classroom, with the assistance of an aide, with a view to independent integration where possible. Students are included in some programs on a regular basis e.g. whole school activities, playground activities and some excursions.