Newcastle East Public School

Australia's oldest school - since 1816

Telephone02 4929 2911

Emailnewcastlee-p.school@det.nsw.edu.au

Frequently Asked Questions

What are Classroom Helpers?

Families are often invited by individual class teachers to be parent helpers in the class room. This may involve helping with tasks such as reading, maths groups, sewing or co operative play groups. It is more common for parent helpers to be requested in the infants school. Your class teacher will provide further information about requirements, times and days this may occur. All parent helpers are required to sign into the school office before entering the class room.

What is Monday Morning Assembly?

Families are encouraged to attend the schools weekly whole school assembly. It occurs in the COLA at 8.45 each Monday morning. If there has been a public holiday or if it is the first day back of term, the assembly is often conducted on a Tuesday morning at 8.45. It is a great way to hear about what is happening in the school as important announcements are communicated here. Our classes will take turns in hosting the assembly. Student merit awards are presented here each week.

What is the Newsletter?

The Hilltop News is the school's weekly newsletter. It is published each week on a Tuesday afternoon. It informs families about what is happening at school. There is a calendar attached to the end of each newsletter with the terms activities on it. A link to the newsletter can be emailed to you weekly, you can access the newsletter via the website the school app or obtain a printed copy from the office. At times there are student activities advertised at the end of the newsletter. The cost of advertising is $5 per week. 

Clap Out On the last day of school the year six students and other students leaving the school are clapped out of the school. Students, teachers, parents and friends are welcome to form a line from the COLA to the front entrance of the school and a slow clap is commenced. To a drum beat, the students then pass by the line to say their last farewell to the school. Each student who is leaving will also get to ring the bell. This is a traditional, highly ritualised way to wish our students well in high school.

What is Presentation Day?

Occurs as a formal assembly under the COLA in the last week of the school year. The Principal presents their yearly report as do the P & C and school council. All children receive a certificate and major prizes are awarded to selected students from each grade. Awards from the library, maths, sports, citizenship, creative art and dux of the school are also presented at the assembly.

What is School Council?

The School Council consists of representatives from the parent community, the school Principal, teachers and a community representative. There are ten scheduled meetings per year and generally are held on the third Monday of the month straight after P&C Meetings at 7.00pm in the school staff room. Everyone is welcome to attend meetings. The School Council is governed by a constitution. The aims of the council are to maximise the quality of educational outcomes of all children in the school. The objectives of the school council are to ensure responsible planning in the short, medium and long term through policy development and strategic planning. The AGM is held in the last meeting of the year. There is a 3 year tenure on being a voting member of the school council.

What is the Parents and Citizens Association (P & C)?

The Parents and Citizens meet ten times a year usually on the third Monday of each month from 5:30pm in the staff tea room. The committee consists of parents, the school Principal and teachers. The P&C is responsible for fund raising activities for the school as well as managing OOSH (Out of School Hours care) and the canteen. Money raised, goes towards physical upgrades to the school as well as to enhance learning environments and resources for our students. All school community members are welcome to attend or volunteer for fund raising activities at anytime. The AGM is held in the first meeting of year.

What is French?

French lessons are offered by the Alliance Francaise of Newcastle, which is an association that promotes French language and culture. They have cultural events (French film festival, French Fridays) and classes for adults, high school students and children.

Classes are after school and on Saturdays for the first nine weeks of each term and last one hour. Prices are 90 dollars for one term as an early bird or 110 dollars for the term. For more information and enrolments contact : www.afnewcastle.com.au

What is Choir?

The choir is a large group of students who have some choral ability and enjoy singing. Students from years 3-6 audition at the beginning of the school year to become members of the choir. Choir practice is held with Mrs Edge's on Friday afternoons from 1.45pm in the library.

What is the Dance Troupe?

Dance Troupe is a large group of students who have some dance ability and enjoy dancing. Students from years 3-6 audition at the beginning of the school year to become members of the dance Troupe. Dance practice is held in the COLA during primary sports time on Fridays.

What are the Sporting Houses?

The school is divided into four houses. These groups are named after some of the first families that attended NEPS. Initially there were 16 students who attended the school. The Eckford family was well represented having 5 children attend the school when it opened.

The house colours are:

Red = Ross

Blue = Fraser

Yellow = Murphy

Green = Eckford

If you are not sure which house you are in, please contact the school office.

What is the Swimming Carnival?

The swimming carnival is usually held in February in term 1 of the school year. Students turning 8-13 years old in this year and are capable of swimming 25 metres (any stroke including dog paddle) are to attend. Kinder and Year 1 students do not attend the carnival. The school arranges for buses to transport the students to and from Mayfield pool where the carnival is held. Students participating in 50M events may be selected to represent NEPS at the zone carnival. Students should wear either the standard school sports uniform or clothing that reflects the colour of their house. Students are encouraged to wear their swimmers to school under their uniform and bring a change of underwear. Students must wear sunscreen and a broad brimmed hat. Rash vests are also advisable. Please pack a towel, goggles, recess, lunch and lots of water to drink. The pool's canteen will also be available throughout the day. A permission slip for carnival attendance and payment for transport and pool admission must be completed prior to leaving school for the carnival.

What is Cross Country and Grandparents Day?

The cross country carnival is usually held in March in term 1 of the school year. Students turning 8-13 years old in this year participate. The carnival is usually combined with a Grandparents Day in which families are invited to attend to enjoy the day. Students under the age of 8 participate in non-competitive games throughout the day. Students participating in the cross country may be selected to represent NEPS at the zone carnival. Students should wear either the standard school sports uniform or clothing that reflects the colour of their house. Students must wear sunscreen and a broad brimmed hat. Please pack recess, lunch and lots of water to drink. A permission slip for carnival attendance and payment for transport (if required) must be completed prior to leaving school for the carnival.

What is the Athletics Carnival?

The athletics carnival is usually held in May in term 2 of the school year. All students participate in the athletics carnival. Kinder, year 1 and 2 participate in their age running race and non competitive games through our the day. Years 3-6participate in running races, high jump, long jump and shot put. The school arranges for buses to transport the students to and from the athletics stadium at Newcastle West where the carnival is held. Students participating in events maybe selected to represent NEPS at the zone athletics carnival. Students should wear either the standard school sports uniform or clothing that reflects the colour of their house. Students must wear sunscreen and a broad brimmed hat. Please pack recess, lunch and lots of water to drink. A permission slip for carnival attendance and payment for transport must be completed prior to leaving school for the carnival.

What is Harmony Day?

Harmony Day is a day of cultural respect for everyone who calls Australia home –from the traditional owners of this land to those who have come from many countries around the world. By participating in Harmony Day activities, we can learn and understand how all Australians from diverse backgrounds equally belong to this nation and enrich it. At NEPS, the children participate in many different activities to celebrate this day. There is usually a school assembly where families are invited to attend to help the children celebrate cultural diversity. The day is an out of uniform day and children are able to dress in traditional costumes from around the world.

What is Education Week?

Education Week is held each year in public schools across the state. Local and regional activities and events showcase and highlight the quality and diversity of education across NSW. Various events are held for the children at NEPS during this week.

What is Book Week?

Each year, schools and public libraries across Australia spend a week celebrating books and Australian authors and illustrators. Class room teachers, teacher librarians and public librarians develop activities, offer competitions and tell stories relating to a theme to highlight the importance of reading. At NEPS, the children participate in many different activities to celebrate this week. There is usually a school assembly where families are invited to attend to watch a parade in which the children display themselves as their favourite character from a book. The National Board of the Children's Book Council of Australia appoints a committee to select award winning books. These are available for purchase for families to donate to the school library.

What is the Easter Hat Parade?

Held during the school term where the children design and make an Easter hat. The Infants School usually make hats in class with supplies brought from home. Parents and careers are invite to help the children make their amazing creations. Children from the primary school usually make hats at home and bring the creations in for the annual Easter hat parade. A school assembly is held where families are invited to attend to observe the marvellous hats on show.

What is the School Disco?

A whole school disco is usually held under the COLA in the last week of terms 1, 2, and 3. A DJ is hired to host the dancing and there is a BBQ and drinks stall held to raise money for the P & C. Children must be supervised at all times by an adult and children are required to remain in the COLA.

What is Scripture?

Special Religious Education is education in the beliefs and practices of an approved religious persuasion by authorised representatives of that persuasion. At NEPS, non denominational Christian religion is taught. Upon enrolment at NSW public schools, parents are asked a series of questions related to their religious background. It is important to note that families must ‘opt in' to scripture lessons. Classes are available for all years from kindergarten to year six dependant on volunteer availability.

What is Primary Ethics?

Primary Ethics is the first authorised provider of philosophical ethics classes. These classes are made available to children who don't attend the Special Religious Education (SRE) classes at their schools. Parents are asked to opt in at the time of enrolment. They are a non-profit organisation, established by the St James Ethics Centre. Primary Ethics consists of volunteers including parents, grandparents and other members of the wider community. Ethics classes are taught within a 'community of enquiry'. This is created by bringing the children into a circle where our trained teachers use stories, pictures and other stimulus materials to engage the children in a lively and interesting discussion. The children are taught how to present a reasoned view and to debate a topic respectfully. They are actively encouraged to listen to and debate with their peers. The curriculum covers a broad range of topics which our students and teachers explore with interest and enthusiasm. It is important to note that families must ‘opt in' to ethics lessons. Classes are available for all years from kindergarten to year six dependant on volunteer availability. For more information about primary ethics www.primaryethics.com.au

What are Music Lessons?

Private music lessons are held at the school during lesson time. Instruments such as piano, drumming and guitar are taught. For teachers details and more information about costs and availability please contact the school office.

What is the Band?

The NEPS School Band comprises of children who play percussion (drums, cymbals, glockenspiel, keyboard etc), brass (trumpet, trombone, euphonium) wind (alto and tenor saxophones, clarinet and flute) as well strings (double bass player and violin).The NEPS Band caters for Creative and Practical Arts Students interested in music and musical instruments. Children from Year 2 onwards are welcome to attend. There is a selection of instruments available for hire through the school. Band rehearsal is every Thursday morning in the Special Purpose Room at 8am to 8:45am. Band practice is lead by our talented and dedicated Band Master. All Band members are expected to practise daily, for at least 15 minutes, which fosters improvement in ability and confidence. There is a cost of $5 per week for Band membership. There are also tutors who visit the school weekly for individual lessons during school hours for an additional fee. The NEPS School Band usually plays at Recital Nights, participates in BandLink and Bandfest and plays at special school assemblies. For more information please contact the school office.