Frequently Asked Questions

How do I enrol my student at Holy Spirit College?

Please refer to the Enrolments page on this website

What are the College office hours?

The Holy Spirit College Office is open on school days from 8:00am to 4:00pm.

After hours, a message may be left on the answering machine and a response to your enquiry will be made as soon as possible.

The College Office is open for a full week after students have finished the school year in December and re-opens a week before school recommences.  However, while full office services are not available between mid-December and mid-January, the answering machine still operates and messages are checked every few days (apart from the actual Christmas/New Year period).

Do you have a College newsletter?

A weekly “on-line” newsletter issues each Thursday.  Distribution is made via e-mail to all parents, students and community members who have registered.  The e-mail address listed in your student’s enrolment form is used for registration.  Additional e-mail addresses (perhaps a relative’s e-mail address) may be registered by contacting the College Office.   Students receive the newsletter via their school e-mail address.  The newsletter is the key to communication between HSC and your family and we encourage all Students and Parents to peruse it weekly.  Regular features include Curriculum Updates, Pastoral Care Matters and Year Level Updates, Sports Updates, Parents and Friends News, Canteen Rosters and other Local Community News.

When do I need to write a note for my student?

To ensure the safety and wellbeing of Students, notes from Parents are required in relation to the following circumstances:

  • A Student’s absence from school
  • Permission to leave the grounds during school hours
  • A valid reason for a Student not completing written homework.
  • A Student unable to wear the correct school uniform.

 

How will my student be supported at Holy Spirit College?

HSC is committed to supporting students. We have a network of support available to students:

  • Contact Group Teachers are responsible for the pastoral care of a specific group of students.  Wherever possible, the Contact Group Teacher teaches his/her respective subject to the Contact Group.

 

  • Year Level Coordinators – The Year Level Coordinator’s role includes:

–        supporting the year level as a whole;

–        being a key person to whom Students can go when they have concerns (whether personal or more general);

–        serving as a key communicator with Parents and the wider community;

–        being a first point of contact when Parents have concerns or wish to communicate with the College about personal
matters that may be affecting their Student;

–        monitoring the behaviour of the Students in a particular year level.

 

  • Studentship Coordinator

–        At HSC our Studentship Coordinator is responsible for supporting Teachers and Students with the Responsible Studentship Process through monitoring Student Application in Learning to identify and to provide support to at-risk Students.

–        The Studentship Coordinator works with both the appropriate Head of Department (HOD) and the appropriate Year Level Coordinator (YLC) to support Students in the development of appropriate goal-setting and learning plans.

 

  • Inclusive Curriculum Centre (ICC)) – The ICC supports the academic, social and personal growth of students with special needs.

 

  • Careers Advisor – The Careers Advisor provides counselling on a range of matters related to course and career planning, tertiary entrance and career advice.

 

  • Regional Indigenous Education Liaison Officer – The Liaison Officer supports the social, educational and personal growth of students of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds.

 

  • Youth Support Coordinator – Employed by Mackay Youth Support Service. The YSC supports students in Years 10 – 12 who are at risk of disengaging from school.

 

  • Campus Minister and College Chaplain – The Campus Minister and College Chaplain support students in the wider journey of school life with a focus on spirituality and holistic well-being.

 

  • College Counsellor – Our College Counsellor is also available each day for Students (individually or in small groups) and for family counselling.  Appointments are in confidence.  Student’s rights to confidentiality will be respected. However, there are legal and ethical requirements for counsellors to breach confidentiality when a student is being neglected, abused, or harmed (including self-harm), or when there is current domestic violence or danger to someone’s life, health or wellbeing. In these exceptional circumstances the College Counsellor is required to report the matter to the Principal (or his delegate) who is required to notify the appropriate authorities which may or may not include parents depending on circumstances.

 

What is Studentship?

Please click here for more information.

What is the Responsible Thinking Process?

Behaviour Management Process

The intent of our behaviour management process is to teach students, who are acting as a disturbance within the school environment, how to think of ways of reaching their goals without violating the rights of others. This is done by teaching students how to search within themselves and decide the way they want to be. A behaviour management process, to be effective, must treat students the same way as those having difficulty in an academic subject: in a positive atmosphere with understanding, respect, and patience.

This is what the Responsible Thinking Process (RTP) is all about.

We consider the Responsible Thinking Process (RTP) to be an effective way of increasing productive learning time and reducing classroom disruptions.  It also enables staff and students to build respectful relationships while enhancing the students’ ability to resolve problems through the creation of effective plans.

 

The Responsible Thinking Process at Holy Spirit College is most consistent with the Catholic Christian mission of the school, in that it provides a framework for the development of several key Gospel Values:

 

DIGNITY OF EACH PERSON – RTP provides opportunities for individual students and teachers to choose to act in a spirit of self-discipline and freedom.

INDIVIDUAL UNIQUENESS – RTP requires that the difficulties a student might experience at school need to be addressed in ways that are tailored specifically to the needs of that particular student.

VALUE OF LEARNING – RTP is designed to provide quality environments for learning, both within and outside classrooms.

JUSTICE AND RESPONSIBILITY – RTP recognises that education is an important mechanism for creating a just society and allows for individuals to learn the social, emotional, behavioural and cognitive skills they will need to become responsible members of the school and wider community.

LOVE – RTP is a set of approaches that encourages us to work constructively with individuals, while refraining from judging them. It is an appropriate means to live out the practical demands of Christian love, even of enemies.

SERVICE OF THE NEEDY – RTP suggests that many students who disrupt at school, do so because they lack the skills needed to experience success here. These students require structured assistance to support a change in their situation.

We believe the Responsible Thinking Process supports our College’s behavioural expectations.

We ask all members of our community to ensure their behaviours and attitudes:

  • allow other students to learn
  • allow teachers to teach and
  • allow students to reach their academic potential.

The Responsible Thinking Process program consists of:

  1. Responsible Thinking Questions

When a student disrupts he/she will be asked a series of questions which allow the student to reflect on the nature of the disruption and give him/her a choice in either remaining in the class/yard or going to the Responsible Thinking Classroom.

  1. Responsible Thinking Classroom (RTC)

This is a supportive environment to help all students to learn how to control their experiences at school in ways that will not disrupt and/or disturb others.

  1.  Plan

If a student is referred to the RTC he/she is required to complete a plan, which helps him/her make choices towards behaving more responsibly. The student then negotiates with his/her class teacher to resume attending the class.

  1. Student Support Meetings

The purpose of these meetings is to offer support options to students to assist them to be successful at school.

  1. Send-Home

Students may be sent home if they continue to disrupt at school or for offences of a serious nature. They may not return to school until an interview with parents has occurred.

It is hoped that students will not only learn to respect others and appreciate fully the guidelines for membership of the Holy Spirit College Community, but they will develop an increased sense of self-discipline.

How do I let the College know if my student will not be at school?

Student Absences from School

It is important that the College be kept informed of a Student’s whereabouts.  Parents are requested to contact the office on the morning of a student’s absence from school or to forward a note to the Year Coordinator upon the student’s return.  The school follows up, with either an SMS message to a parent’s designated mobile phone or a letter to the Parents, where this has not happened.

The College has a dedicated ‘Student Absent from School’ phone line …(07 4969 2699)… for notifying Student absence.

When you call, please leave the following information on the voice mail system:

ü  Student name and year level;

ü  Reason for absence;

ü  A return contact number (should we need to confirm details).

Late Passes

Holy Spirit College commences at 8:30am and concludes at 3:00pm.  Students are expected to arrive by the due time and if they are late they must obtain a late pass from the College Office.

It is quite disruptive to a Student’s own good progress when (s)he is late to school on a regular basis.

Early Departures

If, for any valid reason, a Student needs to leave the College grounds during school hours, Parents should write a note (preferably in the Student’s diary) stating the time and reason for the early departure.  The note must be signed by a Parent. The student is to show the note to their teacher and then (s)he must sign out through the College Office.  Should the student return later that day, s(he) should sign back in at the College Office before proceeding to class.

Please note that interruption of Student learning time is discouraged and therefore  requests to contact students during class without prior notification will only be carried out in situations that the College considers are of an unavoidable or urgent nature.

What happens if my student is sick or injured at school or needing medication?

First Aid and Student Illness

There is an emergency room at the College Office.  Students who are ill should not be at the College.  If illness occurs during a school day, the Student may seek entry to the First Aid room via a sick bay pass or phone call from the Teacher.  After assessment, the Student will either return to class or be sent home.  As there are often times when a number of Students can be waiting for collection, Parents are asked to collect an ill Student as promptly as possible.

It is imperative that should a Student be injured at School a Teacher is notified immediately.

This is particularly important should an injury occur during a break time.

Emergencies, whether from illness or injury, will be managed in the interest of the Student and with as much care as our expertise allows.  In any but the most minor instances, Parents are contacted to seek advice in relation to the options

available, such as seeking medical advice or ambulance.  (However, where the Principal or his nominee considers that urgent attention is called for, then an ambulance may be called without reference to the Parent.)

Legislation dictates that analgesics (e.g. Panadol) may not be distributed to Students by staff.

Arrangements for Students requiring medication at School should be made by contacting the College Office.  Parents are to provide a written request to the Assistant Principal – Welfare, complete a medication dispensing form and provide the medication in the original medication container obtained from the pharmacist.  Full details of the guidelines for administering medication at school can be obtained from the College Office.

Asthmatics should have an up to date record on their file and carry their medication at all times.  In an emergency, Ventolin will be available for sufferers.

Dehydration is a common problem in our climate and symptoms include headaches and nausea.  Students need to accept responsibility for keeping themselves appropriately hydrated through summer.  They are permitted to have a water bottle in class (except computer rooms) and they are encouraged to use the cold water bubblers.

Students with contagious conditions must abide by the usual exclusion time periods as directed by a medical practitioner.

The College should be informed of any condition which may lead to an emergency situation (e.g. epilepsy), so that a student may be afforded the best care possible.  If a Parent cannot be contacted in an emergency, the Principal (or nominee) will assume the right to make decisions related to the wellbeing of the student.

What is the process for travelling to and from school?

Student Travel/ Collection of Students

By Bicycle:

A secure bicycle storage area is provided near to the College Office.  This area is locked once classes commence for the day and opened again at the end of the school day.

By Car:

A supervised pick up line exists outside the front fence.  It is imperative that Parents using this remain in the car at all times and move forward, progressively, to where Teachers are on duty.  Signage is clear and is intended to ensure a free flow of traffic in a safe manner.

By Bus:

Students catching buses departing from the HSC Bus Stop are to remain in the supervised area, at the front of the College. We would appreciate parents enforcing the expectation that students remain in the supervised area at all times.

Buses begin arriving out the front of the College at 3:20pm. Parents picking up students after this time are asked to pick up their children from the area near the front of the Father Bucas Centre so buses can pull in safely to load students.

The Bus Interchange (located near Baxter Drive Park) is not supervised by teachers from HSC.

The following buses depart from:

HSC Bus Stop (Front of College)

170 – Northern Beaches (Eimeo/ Blacks Beach Rd)

120 – Farleigh & Seaforth

104 – Northern Beaches (Eimeo Road Interchange, Bucasia and Shoal Pt)

121 – Farleigh, Coningsby, Valetta Gardens

123 – Valetta Gardens, Coningsby, Leap & Seaforth

Includes all three Habana Buses

Early buses – Bus Interchange

165 – Sarina, Homebush, Pioneer Valley & South Mackay Area

180 – Charles Hodge Ave, Malcomson Street at approx. 3:30pm

105 – Beaconsfield, Andergrove, North Mackay & Slade Point

R6   – Mt Pleasant, Beaconsfield

City – City/Caneland leaves at approx. 3:20pm

Please note the bus companies may alter their services and schedules at times.

Bus Services

  • Seaforth, Seaforth Road
  • The Leap, Coningsby, Farleigh, Sugar Shed Road, Glenella, Valetta Gardens
  • Shoal Point, Bucasia, Eimeo, Dolphin Heads, Blacks Beach
  • Slade Point, Lamberts Beach, Andergrove, Beaconsfield
  • Mackay, South Mackay, East Mackay, West Mackay, North Mackay
  • Pleystowe, Walkerston, Planlands
  • Oakenden, Homebush, Rosella, Bakers Creek
  • Hay Point, Louisa Creek, Timberlands, Alligator Creek
  • Sarina, Sarina via Highway, Sarina via Munburra Road

Please contact Mackay Transit Coaches on 4957 3330 for further information.

Are mobile phones allowed at the College?

The College recognises that there may be genuine need for some students to have a mobile phone at school (for example, for safety before and after school hours).  Students should leave their phone at the College Office at the start of the day and collect it at the end of the school day.  The College takes no responsibility for mobile phones that are not handed in to the College office.

What are the fees for my student to attend Holy Spirit College?

A summary of current fees can be found here.

School fees are set by the Diocesan Catholic Education Office in Rockhampton and school-based costs are determined by the College.  Responsibility for the prompt payment of Fees and Charges is acknowledged as forming part of the enrolment conditions of Holy Spirit College.

The following information provides a broad overview of the major categories of costs.

A.  Diocesan determined Costs

General Tuition Fee

Tuition fees are set by the Diocesan Catholic Education Office.  Rates are determined for a single Student and for a Family, where a sliding scale of discounts applies, depending upon the number of the family’s children attending Catholic Schools in the Diocese.  (Family discounts are applied to the accounts we issue provided an application is made by the due date.)

Funding Building Costs & School/College Infrastructure

Families will appreciate that there is a substantial cost to the Diocese in maintaining and developing the existing school buildings.  It is necessary to raise capital income to service related debt or to otherwise support capital works.  Each family will be charged a building levy per term, in conjunction with normal school fee billings, as detailed in the Diocesan Tuition Fee Schedule.

As this amount forms a collectable part of school fees no tax deduction is possible.

B.  College determined Costs

General Levy

The General Levy is to cover the cost of software licencing, printing, general resources, library books, student diary, newsletter, sports days and other compulsory activities and presentations.

Subject/Consumable Levy

The Subject/Consumable levy covers the costs of core and elective subjects, IT, camps, retreats, excursions and pastoral care expenses.

Parents & Friends Levy

An amount is levied each term as the fairest and least taxing mode of contributing to the P & F at the College.  Although P & F social events are organised, this levy eliminates fund raising activities.

Specific detail, regarding School Costs for the particular year, is provided in separate accompanying information and/or is distributed to families at the start of the school year.

Accounts are sent out each term and are payable by the “Due Date” shown on the Fee Statement.  Arrangements must be made with the Finance Office for late payment of fees and additional charges may be incurred. Timely communication in relation to outstanding School Fees can assist us to assist parents to avoid the additional on-costs associated with debt collection procedures. We make every effort to work with families when we are kept informed of relevant circumstances.  As Diocesan Policy states, “School Fees comprise an annualised amount that is dissected to a per Term/per Week basis for the convenience of family budgeting, therefore whilst a Student is enrolled at this College, School Fees remain payable in full during any period of absence unless agreed to in writing by the College Principal.  Payments can be made by cash, cheque, credit card, direct debit authority or internet banking.  Further details can be obtained from the Finance Office.

Where families are in difficult financial circumstances, either temporarily or otherwise, concessions on tuition fees are available upon application to the College ‘Catholic Education Assistance Fund’ (CEAF).  Supporting documentation (e.g. Centrelink Statements, Bank Statements, payslips etc) needs to be submitted.  Confidential applications should be referred to the Finance Officer, in the first instance.

What are the times for each teaching period and when is recess?

College Timetable

Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday

Tuesday

8:30 – 8:50Contact Groups8:30 – 8:45Contact Groups
8:55 – 9:50Period 18:50 – 9:40Period 1
9:55 – 10:50Period 29:45 – 10:35Period 2
10:40 – 11:15Assembly
10:50 – 11:40Recess11:15 – 11:55Recess
11:40 – 12:35Period 312:00 – 12:50Period 3
12:40 – 1:35Period 412:55 – 1:45Period 4
1:35 – 2:00Recess1:45 – 2:05Recess
2:00 – 3:00Period 52:10 – 3:00Period 5

 

Do students have to wear a uniform and, if so, where can I get them?

Yes the College has a uniform and it is expected that all Students of HSC will wear the correct uniform in an appropriate manner.

For more information, please click here

Do I have to purchase text books for my student?

Textbook Hire Scheme

Holy Spirit College operates a textbook hire scheme for students.  This scheme makes a significant contribution to reducing schooling costs for HSC families.

Texts and class sets required for curriculum needs are purchased by the school and loaned to students for the school year.  These texts will be issued to students in class groups during the first week of school.

The textbook hire scheme is financed through the Queensland Government’s Textbook and Resource Allowance for Students and is authorised by the P&F Association.  This scheme involves no cost to Parents.

In order for the textbook hire scheme to be successful, it is important that Students take appropriate care of issued texts.  As with all library resources, Students will be required to pay for any damage or loss of texts during the year.

Do I have to buy a computer for my student?

As part of the Year 8 Curriculum, Students at Holy Spirit College take advantage of a ‘digital assistant’ as they begin their secondary education through the DAPR~8 Program (Digital Assistant Program ~ Year 8).

Students commence using their own digital assistant at school and at home from Semester 2.  This allows students to be confident in managing their new high school environment before taking on the responsibility of a digital device in their everyday learning.

This week, Year 8 students will receive a Digital Assistant Program (DAPR~8) information pack which outlines the following options:

  • Option A – Purchase a notebook computer through the College package

Full specifications and purchase alternatives are detailed in the Information Package.

  • Option B – Provide a notebook computer which meets the College minimum specifications

Families can provide a notebook computer that can be brought to school either currently owned or newly purchased.  Information regarding suitable devices and questions to ask when selecting a device are detailed in the information pack.

Computer Bags

All students require a computer bag which provides a high level of protection. The College package notebook computer measures 13.3” and requires a bag that is as strong as possible. Please avoid bags with little padding and bags that can be pressed in on the sides and edges. A strong bag, such as the one included as an option in the College package, makes a significant difference to the safety of the computer.

Microsoft Office Professional

The College package includes Microsoft Office Professional however if you are considering Option B (providing your own notebook computer) please note students in the DAPR~8 Program can access Microsoft Office Professional for free through the College IT HelpDesk.

 

Please contact the College if you have questions regarding the program.

Are there lockers for my student to use?

A limited number of lockers have been purchased by the P&F Association for the convenience of students.  These lockers are not accessible after hours.

Early newsletters in Term 1 will offer locker hire for a small fee, which includes the provision of a combination lock.

What do you do with the information I provide to you?

Diocesan & College Privacy Legislation Compliance Statement

Information we collect

Our College collects and records personal, sensitive and health information from students and parents/guardians before and during the course of a student’s enrolment at our College.

Purpose of collection

The primary purpose of collecting and recording this information is to enable the provision of quality Catholic education. In addition, some of the information we collect and record is to satisfy the school’s legal obligations, particularly to enable the school to discharge its duty of care to students and parents/guardians.  This information may also be used for appropriate parish purposes.

Disclosure of information

This information may be disclosed by us for administrative and educational purposes to others including, but not limited to, personnel within Rockhampton Diocesan Catholic Education Office, other systemic schools, medical practitioners, people providing services to schools, such as specialist visiting teachers and consultants.

Our privacy position

Catholic Schools and the Diocesan Catholic Education Office of the Diocese of Rockhampton are bound by the Privacy Amendment (Private Sector) Act 2000, and have adopted the ten (10) National Privacy Principles.  A privacy statement detailing our practices and procedures for the use and management of the personal, sensitive and health information we collect and record can be obtained upon request from the Diocesan Catholic Education Office (PO Box 524 Rockhampton 4700).

Information required

If we do not obtain the personal, sensitive or health information referred to above, we may not be able to enrol or continue to enrol your son/daughter.

By completing and submitting the College enrolment form you have confirmed your understanding of, and agreement with, the above.

How do I make a complaint regarding privacy obligations?

Procedures for the handling of complaints regarding breach of the Diocese of Rockhampton Catholic Schools and Diocesan Catholic Education Office’s privacy obligations.

Parent/Guardians, students and prospective employees (all part of the Diocese of Rockhampton Catholic Education Community and for purposes of Privacy Legislation considered as the Diocese of Rockhampton Catholic Education’s ‘consumers’) have the right to make a complaint about any breach of our obligations.

Privacy issues or concerns arising within schools can be directed on a confidential basis, in the first instance to the Principal at Holy Spirit College.  Alternatively, if an individual believes that privacy has been breached and, further, that this matter is unable to be resolved at the school or local level, a complaint may be made, in writing, to the Director, Diocesan Catholic Education Office, PO Box 524, Rockhampton, 4700.  Similarly, privacy issues or concerns arising from within the Rockhampton Diocesan Catholic Education Office should be directed on a confidential basis to the Director.

Procedures for access to and correction of personal, sensitive and health information within Catholic schools and Diocesan Catholic Education Office (Diocese of Rockhampton).

Parent/Guardians, students and prospective employees (all part of the Catholic education community within the Dioceses of Rockhampton and for the purposes of Privacy Legislation, considered as Catholic Education’s ‘consumers’) have the right to request access to personal, sensitive and health information regarding them, held by the Diocesan schools and the Diocesan Catholic Education Office.

If any of the personal, sensitive or health information regarding a consumer is inaccurate, incomplete or out of date, consumers have the right to make any updates or corrections.

 

No fee will be charged for making a request to access the information, but an administrative fee may be charged to cover any costs incurred in fulfilling the request.

Access will generally be allowed except where:

  • it would unreasonably impact on the privacy of other individuals;
  • the request is frivolous or vexatious;
  • the information relates to existing or anticipated legal proceedings between the parties and the information would not be accessible through discovery;
  • it would reveal a negotiation position;
  • it would be unlawful;
  • denying access is required or authorised by or under law;
  • providing access is likely to prejudice the presentation, detection, investigation, prosecution or punishment of an unlawful activity, the activity of a law enforcement agency or legal proceeding;
  • providing access is likely to reveal evaluation generated within the organisation in connection with commercially sensitive decision making processes;

Requests for access to and correction of personal, sensitive or health information held within schools should be directed, in the first instance, to individual school Principals.  Similarly, written requests for access to and correction of personal, sensitive or health information held within the Diocesan Catholic Education Office should be directed to the Director at PO Box 524, Rockhampton, 4700.

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