Weekly eNews

Junior School

A word from the Headmaster, Ross Featherston

Welcome back!

Another school year begins and with it lots of optimism, hope, energy and enthusiasm. As I mentioned in my welcome video message sent earlier in the week (see below), we enter 2017 in excellent shape and with great things planned for our BGS community.

Our positive start to the year was celebrated nationwide, with two BGS stories running in the national media. The Herald Sun ran a story on how we’re engaging our prep boys in mindfulness and wellbeing training (re-posted on our website here). As you know, we are extremely proud of our school-wide wellbeing program. The Age ran a story about Jordan Bourke, one of our new Indigenous students, and the huge contrast his new school experience will be from his home. 

Best wishes to you and your son/s as we begin another exciting year at BGS. And don’t forget that the best way you can support your son in his school year is to know what’s going on. I urge you to attend your parent information night/s and look forward to seeing you there.


From the Head of Junior School, Peter Tellefson

It is a pleasure to welcome you all to the 2017 school year. The Year 5 and 6 team were all smiles as they entered the newly refurbished classroom spaces, and all the boys are intrigued by the construction work in the creek area and wait with great anticipation to access the space.  Most of the boys are excited to be back, staff will establish routines quickly and I am sure you are all happy to have your son back at school!

A special welcome to our new boys and their families; time will fly quickly, and I am sure with the supportive network that exists at the Junior School you will quickly feel a strong sense of connection and belonging.

Welcome to our new staff: Luke Fensling (6 Investigator), Victoria Fisher (3 Burke), Jacqui Stenniken (5 Scott) and Samara Madden (Prep Kurrajong).  We also welcome back Cindy van Dijk (5 Melville), who is returning from long service leave.




Junior School happenings and reminders

  • Nut-restricted policy reminder. An important reminder to parents to co-operate with the School policy and not include nuts or food containing a high concentration of nuts, such as peanut butter, in your boys’ lunches.
  • Welcome morning tea and the JPG. Thank you to Brigitte McGregor and the JPG Executive who organised and hosted the welcome morning tea yesterday morning. The JPG plays such an important role in the life of the School, not only through fundraising, but even more so by maintaining a sense of connection and community.
  • Parents and Working with Children Check. BGS has a policy which requires parents who wish to assist or participate in any class activities or programs to have a current Working with Children Check. Click here to access an application form, which can be completed online.
  • 2017 Junior School Handbook. Parents are encouraged to access the 2017 Junior School Handbook which will answer many questions, and assist with your son’s transition. Please click here to view.
  • Car park safety. When entering and exiting the Grosvenor Street car park the safety of our boys is paramount. The drop-off/pick-up zone is on the left-hand side of the driveway. Parents who use the drop-off/pick-up zone will need to approach this area via the northern (Oval) side of the tree at the far end of the car park. The exit lane is on the right-hand side; these areas are clearly marked. To assist with the flow of traffic in the car park we ask all boys from the ELC and Junior School not to play on the Adventure Playground after school. I would ask all parents to support this request.
  • The Tuckshop is organised and staffed by Alliance. Orders can be placed online via the Flexischool’s website by 8.30am each day at www.flexischools.com.au.
  • Parents visiting during School hours are to access the Junior School via Reception, and receive a Visitor’s Pass. Parents are asked not to go directly to classrooms. If parents collect their sons during School hours they need to complete sign-out details at the Office. Parents are to make appointments, where possible, outside School hours.


It’s all about ‘the beginning’ in the ELC

I’m not sure who was more excited on Wednesday – the boys, the parents, or our ELC staff! We could hardly wait to begin our first day. Whether the boys were returning from last year or starting their first day at BGS, the emotions were just the same – excited, anxious and hopeful for a wonderful year ahead.

We all know the importance of building secure and safe relationships in life, and for the youngest boys in the School, this is where it all begins for their learning journey. Learning isn’t just about ABC and 1, 2, 3, it’s about finding their sense of self and being the best they can be. This term we will focus on knowing each boy – their strengths, interests, capabilities, character and learning styles. However, to learn about their true self we first need to build a close relationship and develop trust. What a privilege! Our commencement program allows us to first support the boys and families with the transition, and also start to develop a connection while in the smaller groups. I would like to thank all families for their support over this time.

As I have said to a few parents there may be a honeymoon period whilst the boys settle into their 2017 groups. All might surprisingly go well and your son bounces into the classroom each morning, however some may then come to the realisation that this is ‘big boy school’ and experience separation anxiety. This is 100% normal and we are prepared for the wave of tears and tantrums to potentially hit. Please feel free to chat to our staff for strategies or help if this occurs. A great idea can be to leave something of yours with your son so they know you will be returning – spare keys, a scarf, photo etc.

We look forward to a great term ahead and remind parents to download the School Stream app and select your son’s class to receive all of our information.

Amelia Barrow
Director of the Early Learning Centre


Celebrating sons and grandsons of Old Boys

Boys take great pride when following in the steps of their fathers or grandfathers. When Old Boys enrol their sons at BGS, the School also takes much pleasure in celebrating this multi-generational link. To assist us, we ask parents of our multi-generational BGS boys to click here and complete the ‘BGS Generations Form’ so that the School can acknowledge our current second, third and fourth generation BGS boys. If parents have already completed this form, there is no need to complete the form again.

Please return completed forms to Peter Toms at the BGS Development Office, 90 Outer Crescent, Brighton VIC 3186 or by email ptoms@brightongrammar.vic.edu.au.


JPG news

Year Level Representatives and volunteers

The JPG are looking for Year Level Representatives, and a general pool of volunteers to assist on any level. For Year Level Reps, it is preferable we have one volunteer from each class, but two to four people per year level is great.

Representatives work as a team to co-ordinate social events within their year level and arrange volunteers for one event per year within their year level (i.e. mustering four volunteers to deliver food to classrooms for the end of term lunches). Tasks are neither onerous nor time consuming and it is an opportunity to facilitate communication, connectedness and contribution within the School community.

Please email juniorparents@brightongrammar.vic.edu.au if you are interested in being involved, either representing your year level or any form of volunteering. The Term 1 JPG meetings will be on 7 February and 7 March and will both be held at G. B. Robertson Hall from 8.45am to 9.30am.


Junior School Welcome Picnic

Save the date: Friday 3 March. The BGS Junior School Family Night is on Friday 3 March in the Junior School grounds. This is an opportunity for families to get together informally, welcome new families and bring a picnic. Boys can play while parents socialise. Tables will be provided in the red square and the JPG will provide a free sausage sizzle and icy poles for the boys on a first in first served basis. BYO picnic and drinks.


OSHClub: Welcome to Term 1 

We hope you all had a great summer break. We will be running long service day care to accommodate for ELC and Prep transition days. Please ensure you have booked your boy in for days that you require care – if we do not have any bookings prior to the day, we will not be opening for service. To make a booking login or enrol at www.oshclub.com.au.

At our Before School Care program we provide breakfast and walk ELC and Preps to school, older students will be sent 5 minutes before the bell. At After Care we provide afternoon tea and a range of fun activities. We ask that your children brings a hat for After Care during Terms 1 and 4. Looking forward to a great year at OSHClub with new and familiar faces!

Please feel free to contact us with any feedback, questions or concerns:

  • Head Office: 03 8564 9000.
  • Program Contact:  0422 193 377 (Kinder) 0401 143 440 (Primary).
  • Kinder Coordinator: Jacquie Amato, Primary Coordinator: Emma Callery, Assistants: Kate Rushen.

All families must be enrolled to attend the program and/or Vacation Care, and remember it is free to enrol your children online. Please create an account online at www.oshclub.com.au.

All bookings and cancellations can also be managed via your online account. For on-the-day/emergency After School Care bookings please contact the School Office and the Coordinator direct at the program (text messages to the program mobile are preferred). Before School Care can be booked in the same fashion, or just come in.