Address: Willett Avenue, Oak Park VIC 3046
T:(03) 9306 9182 E: William.Nolan@education.vic.gov.au
June 18th 2020
Oak Park Primary School will work collaboratively to provide a stimulating, safe and challenging learning environment that promotes resilient, innovative thinkers.
Calendar of Events
A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the social unrest we were seeing on our TV screens and on social media. This has continued with numerous demonstrations in Australia and in many other countries protesting against racial discrimination.
This has relevance to our students and community. The concepts of racism, ‘casual’ racism and unconscious bias are something we all need to think about. As a teacher and a parent, I have often wondered where racist attitudes spring from and how do we prevent them from spreading.
I saw a film clip the other day that showed two girls, best friends, about nine years old, who were reunited after a couple of months of being in lockdown. They smiled, cried, hugged each other and danced. It was beautiful to see. One was black and one was white. Clearly, kids aren’t born with racist views.
Ruby Bridges, an American civil rights activist who worked hard to desegregate schools in the US, once said, ‘Racism is a grown-up disease, and we should stop using our kids to spread it.’
Where does this grown-up disease come from? Is it that we feel the need to be part of a group - to belong – and we feel more a part of the group when others are excluded? And somehow there’s a part of some people that is suspicious of ‘difference’? Be that race, gender or even footy team.
Sometimes as we get older, we are exposed to a range of influences that if not challenged, can have a negative impact on our outlook or attitudes. I used to play a game with students in my class where I would forcefully put one side of an argument and it wouldn’t be very hard to have the whole class supporting that view. Then, I would forcefully argue the opposing view and bring all the kids over to that side. Then we would talk about why it was so easy for me to change their minds.
Part of the reasons why they were easily led was because it was their teacher who was arguing the point. I guess there was a level of respect and trust there which made it easier – but then kids do trust a broad range of sources, some highly questionable.
I learned with my own kids that we have to be proactive and intervene when they easily accept a proposition that is put to them. On the one hand, I wanted my kids to listen to me and accept what I put to them (because I thought it was right), but then I also wanted them to think and come to their own conclusions about things. It is so hard.
Parents & Students…… Every Wednesday Grant runs our Chess Club which has now started up at school once again. Grant has been running an online class for students, but it’s now returned to face to face.
Students are paged in an announcement made just prior to lunchtime, and are expected to make their way to Chess Club. Students are then called by name if they’ve forgotten.
We’d love to see all students who are involved in Chess attending their class.
Unfortunately we are unable to continue to provide the student banking with the Bendigo Bank.
There has been a drop in the number of participates and it no longer warrants a staff member ensuring the banking is completed.
Of course, please feel free to continue with the student banking at any of the Bendigo Bank branches.
Casual Clothes Day
Screen Time Tips
Oak Park Primary Schools unique QR Code
How to… All you need to do is hover your phone camera over the QR Code then press ‘OPEN/ALLOW’ then ‘OK’ in their internet browser (e.g. Safari). For older phones parents will need to download a free QR Code Reader App. Your venue’s unique QR Code is printed on your posters.
School Contacts - Please take note of new email address