2021 | Issue 1 - 29 January / Յունուար

From the Principal

Celebrating 30 Years of Schooling

Dear Parents,

30 years ago, dedicated members and supporters of the Armenian General Benevolent Union - Sydney Chapter, were able to witness for the first time the opening of the main entrance door to AGBU Alexander Primary School. As a result, the Armenian community of Sydney could send their children to a new bilingual school, situated in the tranquil bush setting of Duffys Forest. A year earlier or during the initial year of the school, the first classes were located at Belrose public school, as the school grounds were still being built, thanks to our beloved benefactors Dr Alex and Mrs Isabelle Alexander. Their vision to preserve the Armenian language, culture and identity was made possible thanks to the support of the AGBU Central Board and the great generosity of its Honorary Life President Mr Alex Manoogian.

Today, on our 30th Year of Schooling at Duffys Forest, we reflect on our past achievements, successes and challenges and look forward with renewed commitment to our service to the community. Service that has stayed focused on its mission and proudly produced many fine, well rounded and well educated youngsters. It is even more gratifying to see these graduates, now as young adults, are taking an active role in the community. In the true sense of our motto ‘To Grow & Serve’ - they have grown and are ready to serve the larger Australian community as well as being ambassadors for their Armenian heritage.

Over the past three decades AGBU Alexander Primary School has set the foundation in educating future leaders. This is not only evident in the community but also in the current School Board where two of its graduates have already taken leadership, and I'm happy to state that these soon to be fathers are ready to direct their school to the next generation. With your continued support and dedication, their task and that of the School Board, is to ensure that this magnificent educational institution, situated on 5-acres of beautiful bush land in Duffys Forest, is able to serve the needs of the Armenian community for the next 30 years.

Welcome Back!

A warm welcome to all members of the Alexander school family for another exciting year! A special welcome to our new students. They have settled in well and seem quite comfortable with their new found friends and environment. For the rest of the students, it took no time for them to resume their routines looking relaxed and eager to learn after a long break. It’s an excellent start to the new school year!

During this morning's assembly, Father Avetis Hambardzumyan welcomed everyone and led a special prayer, officially marking the start of the school’s 2021 Academic Year. The students recited the Lord’s Prayer and after receiving personal blessings from the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, moved with excitement to their new classrooms.

Lord Jesus, we ask for Your help as we begin this new Academic Year of Celebration. Allow us to experience Your presence in the many blessings You put before us. Open our eyes to the new challenges and exciting opportunities that this new school year brings. Open our heart and mind to new friends and new teachers. Give us a generous spirit to be enthusiastic with our studies and courage to accept new opportunities. Help us to be attentive to one another and let us experience Your presence in our new friends. Jesus, inspire us to do our best this year! Amen

Manoug Demirjian

Morning Assembly...

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First Lessons...

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More photos available to parents through the Shared Drive folder

School Routine Notices

Homework &/or Home Reading will be assigned by the teachers for Years K-6 from next week. Please refer to the “Homework Policy” (available on the School App and emailed to parents) to familiarise yourself with the school’s expectations on home study. The teachers will provide more information for each class and during our Parent Information Evening.

School Supplies

Years Prep - 2 | All supplies are provided by the school. Students don't need to purchase any books or stationary.

Please note: Textas and erasers are not permitted for P/K students.

Students in upper grades need to purchase the following personal stationery supplies:

Years 3-6 | Two pencil cases that need to remain at school for classroom use only. One is to be left in the English and the other in the Armenian classroom. Each pencil case should have a packet of lead (HB) pencils (No Pacers), eraser, sharpener, 30cm ruler (wooden or plastic, not metal), glue stick, scissors, highlighter, two red pens (medium point), coloured pencils and textas.

They also require two blue pens and a geometry set, a USB, headphones for their laptops and a mouse.

Please note: Correction fluid (liquid paper or whiteout) is banned.

Covering Books - Teachers will send home textbooks and exercise books over the next week or so. Please cover textbooks, diaries and exercise books with clear contact only. Some book covers for exercise books will be made by students and/or supplied by the school before contact is applied. Clear contact must be used as teachers will group books into subject areas based on the colours of book covers. This assists with easy sorting and classifying.

Prep/Kindergarten students should have a change of underwear and socks in their school bag daily.

Toys are not permitted at school. P-K class teachers will advise parents with a note, when and if toys are permitted for “News” sessions. Toys will be confiscated. (Please note: Nintendo DS, PSP and iPods are permitted during bus travel only, and responsibility for safekeeping rests with students)

Birthdays - Prep - K students only are welcome to celebrate their birthdays at school with a cake. Cakes should be as plain as possible with only a small quantity of icing. Parents should notify the school office or class teacher one day in advance if they plan to celebrate at school with a birthday cake. Please do not provide “Party/Lolly Bags” as part of the celebration.

Uniform - Please note the correct school uniform in the School Diary or in your Enrolment Package. Also refer to the “Uniform Policy - Parent Handout” to understand the school’s policy on this. Girls should come to school wearing their sports briefs and are not allowed to wear coloured long boxer type shorts under their summer uniform. Students are also not allowed to wear coloured T-shirt under their summer and/or sports uniform. Plain stud earrings or sleepers are allowed for girls. Dark blue hair ribbons, clips and scrunchies should be worn.

Label Clothing -All removable clothing including jumpers, hats, track suit tops and pants, must be clearly marked with your child’s name. This will assist the school with lost clothing.

Sports Day - will be on Wednesdays. All students must wear complete summer sports uniform as obtained from school. Please note predominantly white coloured sports shoes and all white socks (not anklets) are required. Summer sports uniform is worn in Terms 1 & 4, and winter sports uniform in Terms 2 & 3.

Students not participating in a sports session must bring a signed note from parents with a full explanation.

Sports Shoes - Students are allowed to bring sports shoes to school for play. They are allowed to leave a second pair of sports shoes (predominantly white) at school to change at lunchtime for play (eg soccer) then change back.

School Hats must be at school daily. One of our school rules is ...“No Hat, No Play”. Students without hats will not be able to use the playground area during play time. They are to sit down in the shade, read a book by themselves and not play.

Students who do not have a hat break the school Uniform Code and will receive a cross in the Red Book.

Sunscreen - Parents are reminded that application of sunscreen on children in the morning is essential. It is recommended that students carry sunscreen (roll-on types only) in school bags to reapply. An SPF factor of 15+ (or greater) broad-spectrum, water resistant sunscreen is recommended.

Healthy Lunches - Our school health policy insists that only nutritional foods – low fat, low sugar – are consumed at school. We are very proud of the quality of food our canteen provides. We remind all parents to support our policy by continuing to send only healthy type foods in lunch boxes. We expect only one snack type of food for Morning Tea. Definitely no sweets, chips, chocolates, jam, nutella and “junk” food are permitted.

Fresh fruit and vegetables are essential foods for children.

Occasionally and in moderation, the school canteen will treat students with a cake stall. The school Newsletter will advise parents of these days.

Library borrowing will not start until next term. Students must have library bags to borrow books. A library rule is no library bag, no borrowing. Students are rewarded for remembering to bring in their bags. Library bags are simply drawstring bags with dimensions of approximately 30cm wide and 38cm long. Any fabric may be used but please ensure its durability.

Absences By law student absences from school must be explained with a written note from parents. Notes can be in English or Armenian and should be sent on the day the student returns to school following an absence. Notes are legal records and must be written in pen and signed by a parent. Notes are to be addressed to your child’s classroom teacher. Please ensure the following information is provided in a note: Student’s name, date/s of absence, reason for absence, parent’s signature, date when note is written. Parents can also use the School App to send a Form with the above information to the school office.

Information Update Forms - “Student Information Update” forms for each student will be sent home early next week. The Student Information forms are replaced in our school filing system at the beginning of each year. Therefore, it is important for the school to identify any changes to student details including telephone numbers, address or health risks (e.g. asthma and/or allergy development). Please remember, signatures of both parents in residence are required.

Parents are requested to have completed/updated forms returned to school as soon as possible.

Bus Passes - The students are expected to use their Opal Cards from last year. New students need to apply or lost ones need to be replaced by an online application. Students are permitted to travel without a card only until the end of February. Opal Cards must be presented or tapped on and off thereafter otherwise students are required to pay fare. Please check your child/ren’s card to ensure details are correct. Contact the school office immediately should there be any errors.

This photo means one thing... school is back!

Gymnastics is Back!

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The well received and requested gymnastics program is back again this year. ‘Be Skilled Be Fit’ will be back to run the sessions on our Sports days, which has been set on Wednesdays for this Term.

Birthdays of the Week

Happy Holiday Birthdays to…

Levon P. | Lia G. | David K. | Adelin G. | Mrs Talar Bedikian | Mrs Seta Keoshgerian


On behalf of the AGBU Alexander Primary School Board, Teachers, Students and Parents we like to congratulate

Mr & Mrs Jacques and Angineh Kolokossian

and their son Davit

on the birth of their son and baby brother!

Unforgettable Memories | Անմոռաց Յիշատակներ

2020 Graduates

Good Luck in High School!

Good luck to our 2020 Graduates who are starting High School this week!

A good time to share their 'Unforgettable Memories' video, available on our YouTube page "AGBUAPS", where you find many more!

Dates to Remember

29/01/21 Students Start 2021 School Year

03/02/21 Sports Day - Start of Gymnastics

15/02/21 Parent Information Evening

30/03/21 Life Education Van Visit (Healthy Harold)

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SELECT HERE FOR: Community announcements.

Newsletter moves Online!

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For 30 Years, the weekly 'Newsletter' was published, printed and distributed to the school families as the main source of information. This important communication tool not only disseminated news from the classrooms, but also provided the permission slips for the parents to complete and return to the office.

With the majority of parent communication now taking place over a variety of electronic devices, it was time for a review of the Newsletter. Therefore, you are now able to witness the change to our Newsletter... it has been moved to an online version! As a result, it has been transformed and revitalised as a significant online communication tool with the school community.

We look forward to your feedback and review.