Attendance / Absence
Regular attendance is vital to the continuity of your child’s education. Should illness or an emergency prevent your child from attending school, please remember to ring the Office before 9.30am. If you know this in advance please let either the Class Teacher/Guardian or the Office know. Please also note that it is a legal requirement that a written communication be given to the School explaining any absence.
Monday and Tuesday 9.30am to 12.30pm for children under 3 accompanied by parents.
Wednesday and Thursday 9.30am to 2.30pm. These days are similar to a traditional family day care, for children under 5 requiring child care. Parents may stay or go as arranged.
Friday 10 am to 2 pm
Monday to Friday: 9am until 3pm
Monday to Friday
Monday to Thursday 9.00am to 3.00pm
Friday 9.00am to 12.30pm
Primary, Middle & High School
Monday to Friday – 8.50am – 3.00pm
Supervision of students
The School provides supervision of students from 8.30am to 3.15pm. Parents must be prompt in collecting students at the end of the day. Parents working at School after hours or attending courses are responsible for the supervision of their own children. It is suggested this should be conducted away from the School.
During school hours students may only leave the grounds with a written request from a parent or guardian.
The School works on a guideline of appropriate adults per students for any excursions requiring supervision. Whenever children travel in private vehicles they are strapped one per seat belt.
Coming and going to School
To ensure the safety of your children, we need to know as a general rule how he/she is coming and going to School. Should you need to make alternative arrangements in picking them up one day, please inform the Office.
Parents may drop off their children in the morning and pick them up at the close of School but are asked not to linger or gather around the classrooms. Shearwater has recently constructed an extensive car park and bus turning circle complete with a drop off “Kiss and Drive” lane. The car park (70 places) is designed to accommodate the Teachers and visitors’ parking. In order to minimise Left Bank Road traffic – a concern of local residents – we ask that students use the six buses that are allocated on the run to Shearwater. The buses serve students throughout the Shire (and beyond) and drive directly to Shearwater.
The School Student Transport Scheme
The NSW Government provides support for students to access education through the School Student Transport Scheme (S ST S). That Scheme provides subsidised travel for eligible school students on rail, bus, ferry and long distance coaches. A subsidy is also available for transport to and from school in private vehicles in areas where there is no public transport. The Ministry of Transport manages the Scheme through its regional offices located in Newcastle, Parramatta and Wollongong. Transport operators issue passes to eligible students, and school verifies students’ eligibility and liaises with transport providers.
The Scheme can only be used for travel between home and school, and for approved travel commencing between the hours of 6.30 a.m. and 6.30 p.m. Monday to Friday on school days. It does not extend to activities such as school excursions, sports and work experience or attendance at joint secondary/TAFE programs, High school multi-campus, Saturday schools, Pre-schools, mini-schools (except for full-time geographically isolated distance education students), before and after school care or child minding premises.
To be eligible for the Scheme an applicant must be: a resident of NSW, 4 years and 6 months of age or older and enrolled as one of the following:
– an infant student (K-2) regardless of the distance between their home and school
– a primary student (Years 3-6) who lives more than1.6 km (radial distance) from school, or 2.3 kms or more by the most direct practical walking route to the nearest entry point to the school
– a secondary student (Year 7-12) who lives more than 2 km (radial distance) from school, or 2.9kms or more by the most direct practical walking route to the nearest entry point to the school.
How to apply?
Application forms are available from the school. Forms must be completed and signed by a parent or guardian if the student is under 16 years of age.
A separate application must be lodged for each part of the trip undertaken with a different transport operator. For instance, a journey using the services of two bus operators and CityRail requires three applications. If a trip is undertaken on two separate services of the same transport operator, only one application is necessary.
The completed application form(s) should be returned to the school, which will verify that the student is enrolled. Schools also do an initial check on the student’s eligibility on radial distance grounds.
The school will forward the application form(s) to the transport operator, who will assess whether the student meets the distance eligibility criteria.
If eligible, the operator will issue the student with a pass, which indicates that it is solely for travel under the Scheme. In some cases (such as in rural areas) passes are not issued, as the operator knows the students.
A new application must be completed when a student:
enrolls in kindergarten
progresses from Year 2 to be an eligible student in Year 3
progresses from Year 6 to Year 7
changes name, school and/or address
applies for an additional travel pass in a joint/dual custody situation.
Students driving to School
Student Vehicles will only be permitted after a request in writing from the parent/guardian. This is in keeping with the School’s commitment to keep traffic along Left Bank Road to a minimum. (cf Appendix, Permission forms)
Exceptions : Picking up children and/or visiting school DURING or AFTER School hours
All visitors to the School – including ex-students and parents – are to report to the Office on arrival. Visitors will be issued with an identification tag and need to be escorted around the School grounds.
Visits by ex-students are welcome but need to be organised by the Office or Teachers. Ex-students visiting for social purposes will be deterred. If equipment or books need to be picked up, organise this straight after school hours.
The Shearwater grounds are private property and are patrolled by security after hours. Visits are out of bounds during this time.
Morning tea and lunch should be brought to School each day. The children eat together in Class groups and, although they don’t share their lunches, these occasions are very much a social and community activity. Please be conscious of minimizing the amount of throwaway packaging (e.g.: yoghurts, poppers etc.) A fresh wholesome lunch with water is preferred (water dispensers are available throughout the school) to packaged juices. Also, no lollies, chewing gum or bubble gum.
Shearwater Catering runs a tuckshop and catering services, all of which are covered in great detail in the section 2) Shearwater, the Mullumbimby Steiner School: Other things that make our school special: Our community of little businesses and services: Shearwater Catering
Teachers ask for tidiness and cleanliness of hair, nails and clothing. There is no school uniform. Children should wear loose, comfortable clothing. Clothing, especially T-shirts, displaying inappropriate images or slogans are not acceptable.
Strong protective shoes are necessary in winter. In summer sandals are appropriate, but thongs are NOT acceptable due to occupational Health & Safety regulations. In under seven’s and primary classrooms each child requires a pair of slippers for indoor activities. These slippers are also used for Eurythmy and are available from the School shop. Gumboots and shoes must be left outside the classroom door.
Hats are essential in spring and summer. The most suitable hats provide adequate protection for the face, ears and neck. If a student comes to School without a hat they will not be able to play outside.
Physical Education, Games, Sport
Students are required to have a change of clothing for PE lessons. A T-shirt, shorts and appropriate footwear are suggested.
Please label everything your child brings to school: footwear, lunch boxes, bags, jumpers, coats, swimmers, hats and anything else that comes to school regularly and may get lost.
There is a lost property box next to the Office. If your child is missing clothing, check the box as soon as possible as the contents are regularly recycled to the Opportunity Shop.