2021 APS Newsletter Issue 15

Junior School Council Report


Hello everyone,

In the past two weeks we did some fun online activities.

One of them is an online Art session. That was held on Friday the 10th of September. We followed the instructor’s guide and drew some fun giraffes step by step. Another one was Lizard Wizard. It was very exciting to see a lot of animals such as lizards, snakes, turtles and even a sugar glider on screen! 

Also, as Stanley xiaozhang mentioned during assembly, teachers have placed a purple pin on an online map to show where they would love to go after COVID. There is a challenge for you to see if you can find your teachers on the map. Don’t forget to leave a Thank You message for your teachers for the hard work they have done this Term! 

We would also like to congratulate students who received a Student of the Term Award during assembly today. On top of that, thank you to everyone who submitted an entry in the writing competition. We are looking forward to reading your stories.  

Today, we had our first virtual Moon Lantern Festival on Webex. Thank you for all the students who practised hard for the dances and a special thank you to Hao laoshi for making the videos and Ema laoshi for teaching us the dances. Although it was online, it was still as magical as the real thing in person.

Even though we are still in lockdown, we had a lot of fun events this term.

We have interviewed some students about their favourite activities throughout the term, and here is what they said. 

"I really like book week activity because we can dress up like our favourite characters." --- Rafe
"I am looking forward to going back to school and meet my teachers and friends." --- Lloyd

"I like the Father's day cooking activity." --- Lila

We hope everybody had fun this term and we look forward to seeing you back at school whether online or in person on the 4th of October.  


Principal's Report

Dear Parents, Carers and Community Members,

Well done, APS, for getting through Term 3 with Lockdowns 5.0, 5.1, 6.0, 6.1, 6.2 and 6.3...

Most certainly what has got us through over these continual lockdowns is the resilience shown through the partnership between parents, students and staff.

We have all had to adapt quickly and take on different roles everytime lockdown hits us, but without our collective effort, I could not have ever imagined that engagement would continue to be strong and that the teaching and learning would continue to be of such high quality.

Curriculum Day - Berry St Education Model Module 3

The entire APS staff team undertook Berry St Educational Model Module 3 online with St Joseph's Primary School last Friday. It was an extremely valuable training focusing on strengthen classroom engagement and students' stamina, both of which are on the staff's mind everyday as they tackle the challenge of remote learning.

Thank you to parents/carers for accommodating to the Curriculum Day arrangement!

Virtual Workshops and Programs

Virtual afternoon activities have been a big part of the Week 9 and 10 Calendar and we hope that they have helped to broaden the range of activities accessible to students.

I would particularly like to thank The Art Factory, The Lizard Wizard, Fizz Kidz for the workshops and activities over these last two weeks. These program providers have taken our school context into account in pricing and offered a very flexible approach to their delivery.

Book Week Activities

Well done to students who engaged in the various activities for Book Week, including the Dress-up Day, Premier's Reading Challenge, and the Writing and Illustration Competition. The English team has provided a fantastic offering this term, and the teachers have been extremely pleased (and proud!) with the quality of the submissions.

Travis laoshi will be reporting back in more detail in the next issue of the newsletter, but I wanted to take the opportunity to acknowledge the English teachers' work behind-the-scenes in setting these activities up, and encourage those students who are still completing their submissions to finalise their work and submit by the start of next term.

Staffing Update

I would like to take the opportunity to congratulate Marianna for having been appointed Business Manager from the 2022 School Year.

Caroline will continue to work with us, as she heads up the new Wellbeing Centre. Over the summer, we are expecting further refurbishment to be done upstairs near the Year 1/2 Area. We plan to open a Wellbeing Centre that will feature a new sensory play lab, a room for various student support services and an office that affords more privacy for Student Support Group Meetings.

We are looking forward to Caroline's leadership in the new centre, as we believe this more focused role would allow her to devote more of her time and energy in a way that truly capitalises on her expertise.

APS Alumni

Over the last few months, we have had some very pleasant contact from APS Alumni who attended the school from 1940s all the way through to 1970s. Given that it is the School's 145th anniversary next year, the School is interested in starting to collate a list of alumni from "pre-computer days."

We plan to run a series of events next year in celebration of this special year, and we hope that there will be opportunities for Alumni to be invited as guests to these events.

If you know of any APS Alumni from the last century (!) who would be interested in coming back for a visit next year or following us on social media, we would love to hear from you!

APS on Google Maps

APS held two webinars at the start of September for the general public on bilingual education which were very well attended and received. Leading up to the webinars, we have seen a sudden surge in the number of searches of our school on Google. In fact it was over 48,000 searches in August, and nearly 70,000 over the last quarter.

These numbers really highlight the importance of keeping our Google entry up-to-date and having reviews that are truly representative of our stakeholders' opinions towards us.

We would really appreciate if you could to take 3 minutes to give us a good rating and review on Google Maps, as the first impression we give to any visitor accessing our Google entry remotely goes a long way!

Term 3 Students Awards

Well done to students who received a Term 3 Award today! The teachers are very proud of you for having continued to demonstrate the school values of Curiosity, Challenge, Connectedness and Care.

If you missed out on the assembly this morning, you can find the Award Ceremony powerpoint here!

Moon Lantern Festival

Thank you to everyone for coming along to our first virtual Moon Lantern Festival!

From when we first started planning the festival in February, we have been through Plans A, B, C, D ..., to eventually, Plan X.

Thank you to Lisa and the Fundraising and Community Event Sub-Committee, Hao laoshi, Ann laoshi, Lizzie laoshi, My Hoa laoshi, Ema laoshi for your collective efforts in making the festival a reality under these extraordinary circumstances.

As everyone saw today, Hao laoshi's video editing skills have once again put a beautiful smile on everyone's face!

If you would like to re-watch any part of today's festival, here are the Youtube links:

- Story of the Moon Lantern Festival
- APS Student Performance
- Ema Laoshi's Performance
- Music for the Lantern Parade

We hope you enjoyed the festival, and here is a teaser to what Hao laoshi has in mind for an APS Lantern Collage:

Holiday Activities

The APS Office and staff will be on break from tomorrow until Sunday, 3 October. Whilst we will not be hosting any activities ourselves, we have been collating information regarding available holiday activities for families.

Marianna has put together a special article in this issue of the newsletter with activities that we have come across, and special thanks to parents/carers who have shared the information with us.

We hope the list and links will be useful for you.


Last, but least, stay safe! Enjoy the extra freedom starting tonight, whether that is picnic with 1 or 5.

Fingers crossed that we'll all be together onsite again soon!

Stanley xiaozhang

School Council Update

Hello Everyone,

Congratulations to all students, staff and carers for making it to the end of a very LONG and TIRING term!

Hopefully, the weeks of holidays are a chance to rejuvenate, just a little bit.

Here’s a brief School Council update to finish off the term.

Stanley Xiaozhang’s incredible achievement

On behalf of the School Council and the School community, I congratulate Stanley Wang xiaozhang on winning in the Education Category of the "40 under 40: Most Influential Asian-Australian Awards for 2021." Notably, Stanley xiaozhang was the only school principal to be nominated on this illustrious list.

I know that the school community is very proud of our hard-working principal. These awards are the result of a partnership between Asialink, ANU, Johnson Partners and PwC Australia that aims to recognise Asian-Australians who contribute to strong partnerships between Australia and the Asia. Stanley’s award was also highlighted in a report by ABC and the official media release by the organisers.

Well done Stanley! APS is lucky to have you.

School Council vacancy – come join the team!

There is a vacancy on School Council for a position that will be up for re-election in March 2022. So if you’re curious about how School Council operates or have always wanted to participate in School Council, please send an email to schoolcouncil@abbotsfordps.vic.edu.au. This is your opportunity to experience what it is like to participate in School Council without having to commit to a full term.

APS Staff Gratitude Padlet (Optional Activity)

To continue our journey around the world on Padlet, which has predominantly been filled with food so far, we invite all students to take a moment and share a special message with 2-3 APS staff members of your choice to show your appreciation.

This week, the colour of the map pins will be purple. Each staff member has nominated a destination of their choice for where they would like to travel to after the pandemic.

Students will need to go on an adventure around the world to find the staff member they would like to say thank you to. Please use the comment function on the post to leave your message.

Random Acts of Kindness Journal (Optional Activity)

The School Council is inviting all students to collate their experiences of Random Acts of Kindness which will be showcased in the next newsletter in an article that will be by the students, for the students.

So please take time to explain what a Random Act of Kindness is (no act of kindness is too small!) and to help your child(ren) to look out for these, record these in a manner appropriate for your child(ren) and submit these stories (and photos if possible!) to Fangni.Zhou@education.vic.gov.au by Friday, 8 October 2021.

Have a wonderful term break!


R U Okay? Day

Thursday the 16 September was R U OK? Day. This day is a national day of action dedicated to reminding everyone that every day is a day to ask ‘Are you okay?’ Students and staff wore yellow, and participated in learning tasks that guided students in recognising when they themselves, or a friend aren’t feeling okay, and what they can do to either offer support, or seek support themselves.

In these challenging times, it’s more important than ever that we recognise signs that those around us may be finding things hard, and letting them know that there is someone to talk to. Frameworks for conversations when you notice someone isn’t okay were discussed in classes, with an emphasis on when it’s a good time to seek further support from a trusted adult. Students were encouraged to identify who might be key people in their support network that could help them, and what they could say to a friend who they identified as needing help to navigate their feelings. Our teachers reported that the conversations around the topic were rich and powerful, equipping students with useful strategies to support each other, and to seek support for themselves in times of need.

Here is some of our students' work from R U OK? Day.



Compass Transition for Parents

We are currently in the process of moving our School Management System from Sentral to Compass. We are looking forward to the benefit of having a program that will better serve our school community and look forward to learning more about the program throughout Term 4.

Compass is a management system that is used widely throughout Victorian Schools, including Richmond High School, where many students continue onto.

Abbotsford Primary School will be using Compass to mark attendance, send notifications, write reports and record other welfare issues specific to students. As parents you can notify the school of your child’s absence, communicate with the school, pay for excursions and other required payments via their online payment system and provide consent through your phone via their app.

We will begin using Compass from the beginning of Term 4 - Monday 4th October 2021.

From this time, please communicate with the school via Compass as Sentral will no longer be in use. We encourage you to download the Compass App and refer to the link below to get more information and to get you started on our Compass journey!

A guide for parents & families (compass.education)

To log in you will require your unique family username and password. We will send you your log in details during the second week of the holidays so please stay tuned!

Upon first login, you will be required to change your password and confirm your email address and mobile phone number. These details may be used by our school for SMS, password recovery and email communication throughout the year.

We are currently in the preliminary stages of setting up Compass and so please be patient with us. This means that when you log in, you will likely only see minimal information at this stage.

Please understand that we are also learning this new system and do not know everything yet! We aim to have it fully functional by the start of 2022 and look forward to making our Compass journey alongside you all!

Upcoming Events

Monday, 4 Oct
Term 4 Starts

Friday, 8 Oct (8:40-9:00)
Second Hand Uniform Sale (TBC)

Friday, 15 Oct
APS Trivia (TBC)

Tuesday, 19 Oct
NAPLAN SRT Testing (More info to come)

Thursday, 21 Oct 
School Council

Friday, 29 Oct
World Teachers' Day

Monday, 1 Nov
Special Program (No formal learning program)

Monday, 8 Nov - Sunday, 14 Nov
National Recycling Week

Monday, 8 Nov - Wednesday, 10 Nov
Year 3-6 Camp (TBC)

Thursday, 11 Nov
Remembrance Day

Wednesday, 17 Nov
School Council

Tuesday, 7 Dec
Statewide Transition Day (TBC)

Wednesday, 8 Dec
School Council

Tuesday, 14 Dec
End of Year Picnic (TBC)

Thursday, 16 Dec
Reports Distrubution

Friday, 17 Dec
End of Term 4 (Early Finish 1:00pm)

Community Noticeboard






Holiday Activities for Children


The Victorian Big Build Project website has some great educational activities for children to engage in during the school holidays. They can be found here



Please find below details of 4 free webinars students can participate in over the school holidays. Best thing is, that they all cover a citizen science activity which can be taken outside, even in lockdown!

• Webinar recording: What is 'Plirding'- and how to do it!

You can now see the recording of the Webinar about 'Plirding' on 4 September - HERE.  Plirding is picking up litter while birding! Join Ann McGregor, Friends of Merri Creek Birdwatch Coordinator, Julia Cirillo, from Merri Creek Management Committee, and Freya McGregor, Coordinator of Birdability in the USA to learn the art of plirding, birds to look out for while birding, and how to pick up litter safely while contributing to the Victoria wide Litterwatch Citizen Science project. Suitable for all ages.

• Lunchtime session: ‘Top Spots For Frogging’ Froginar

Tuesday 21 September, 12noon-1pm

Where are the best spots to hear frogs? Join Melbourne Water, and Julia Cirillo, Waterwatch Coordinator at Merri Creek Management Committee, at a ‘roundtable’ discussion with experienced "froggers" from around Melbourne who will share their top sites for hearing frogs.

This family friendly event is for new froggers and experienced froggers alike and there will be time for questions and discussion. Bookings essential here: https://www.mcmc.org.au/29-front-page/front-page-blurb/1067-lunchtime-session-top-spots-for-frogging-froginar

• Frogs online with Darebin libraries!

Wednesday 22 September, 10.30-11.30am

September is Biodiversity month and it's the perfect time to learn about the ecology of our local creeks and waterways. In this wonderful watery workshop, we'll learn about the frogs that support Merri Creek with educators from the Merri Creek Management Committee. And play a kahoot quiz! Discover how you can be a citizen scientist! Bookings essential here

• Platypus back in the Merri? Meet the 'Merri Platypus Paddle'

Thursday 30 September, 7-8pm

The Merri Platypus Paddle invites you to join MCMC’s Waterwatch Coordinator and Melbourne Water’s Dr Teresa Mackintosh for an interactive and informative evening to learn more about the iconic platypus and the plan by Merri Platypus Paddle to get platypus back into Merri Creek.

In this webinar, you will find out more about platypus biology, population statistics on Merri Creek, its habitat requirements, and the ambitious and exciting plans by Merri Platypus Paddle to bring platypus back into the Merri, and how you can be a part of this. Bookings essential here.

• Free digital resources including digital puzzles! 


Yarra City Council - Free Parent Info Sessions