Annual School Report (2013)

St Aidan's Primary School, Rooty Hill

1-5 Adelaide St, Rooty Hill NSW 2766
Principal: Mr Ted Langford
Phone: 02 8886 9800
Fax: 02 8886 9899


About the Annual School Report

St Aidan's Primary School is registered by the Board of Studies (New South Walesas a member of the Catholic system of schools in the Diocese of Parramatta.

The Annual School Report provides parents and the wider school community with fair, accurate and objective information about various aspects of school performance and development. The Report describes achievement of school development priorities in 2013 and gives information about 2014 priorities.

This Report is a legislative requirement under the Schools Assistance Act, 2008.

The information in this Report is complemented by the school website where other school publications and newsletters can be viewed or obtained from the school

Message from key school bodies


I am proud to present to you the 2013 Annual School Report for St Aidan’s Primary School, Rooty Hill. St Aidan’s Primary School is a welcoming Catholic community. The vision is for St Aidan’s Primary School to be a vibrant learning community.

The school’s motto,Together We Are One, along with the school crest, reflects the diversity within the community: a community where unity is sought through love.

The separate pieces of the cross identify the many gifts and talents and the students from many cultural groups who contribute to the uniqueness of the school.

This year the school’s formation goal was to develop a deeper understanding of the new evangelisation and to deepen our relationship with Christ through the Gospel of Luke. Once again we continued to focus on improving the outcomes of each student in literacy.

Teachers at St Aidan's Primary School have worked enthusiastically to provide each student with purposeful and challenging learning experiences. This reinforced the importance of learning for each student.

Parent body

The parents at St Aidan’s Primary School worked in partnership with the school, building a learning community that was welcoming and inclusive, with the children at the centre of the learning.

Parents were encouraged to be involved with their children's learning and with all aspects of school life. Parents attended information meetings, workshops for teaching children to read and the use of technology and parent and teacher interviews. They were encouraged to contact the teachers at any time, regarding any matters concerning their children or school life. Parents regularly attended school assemblies, liturgies and school celebrations.

A number of parents assisted teachers in the learning spaces with reading, writing, Mathematics, creative arts and sport. 

Student body

Each day commenced for the students with a reminder that they were here to learn, work hard and be kind to each other.

During morning assembly students were informed of the day’s events or about any visitors coming to the school with a reminder of the school’s expectation that students were to greet visitors and, where possible, call them by name.

Student leaders from Year 6 had a variety of responsibilities which they carried out on a regular basis. These included: raising the flag; putting out the chess pieces; welcoming visitors to the school; assisting at Kindergarten orientation as well as a number of other duties to assist with the smooth running of the school.

Students from Year 4 and 5 were also involved in the life of the school as library monitors and members of the school radio and liturgy committees.

Who we are

History of school

St Aidan’s Primary School was established in 1907. It was founded by the Sisters of St Joseph. The school came under the care of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary in 1969. The first lay principal was appointed in 1990.

St Aidan’s Primary School has grown into a two stream school with an enrolment of over 400 students. In 2007, the community celebrated its centenary year with a mass on St Aidan’s Day. Two thousand and seven also saw the commencement of extensive refurbishing of ten classrooms and the administration block. This building project was completed in October 2008.

In 2009 the school underwent serious maintenance using the funding from the Australian Government’s National School Pride (NSP) project.

In 2010 the school utilised the funding from the Australian Government’s Building the Education Revolution (BER) to construct a new tuck shop and Year 4 learning space, and refurbish the library and Stage 3 learning space.

All grades work in flexible learning spaces where teachers design learning experiences that challenge students to work collaboratively and problem solve.

The integration of technology is a very important aspect of the learning and teaching at St Aidan's Primary School.

Location/drawing area

The school is located in Rooty Hill, a suburb of western Sydney and serves the St Aidan’s parish. The area comprises an older established residential area and more recent housing development. The school's drawing area includes Rooty Hill, Eastern Creek, Plumpton, Mt Druitt, Minchinbury, Bungarribee and a smaller area of Plumpton.

Enrolment policy

St Aidan's Primary School follows the Catholic Education, Diocese of Parramatta (CEDP) document, Enrolment Procedures in Parramatta Catholic Systemic Schools, January 2002. This document can be obtained from the school office or is available on the CEDP website

Current and previous years' student enrolments

Year Boys Girls Total
2011 202 203 405
2012 204 210 414
2013 212 202 414

Numbers have remained stable for the past two years and should continue to remain so in 2014

Characteristics of the student body

The table below shows the number of students in each of the categories listed.

Language Backgrounds other than English (LBOTE)* Student with Disabilities (SWD)* Indigenous
 352 27  0

School review and development

Annual school priorities

 Priority Reason for the priority  Steps taken to achieve the priority Status of the priority (Achieved, not yet achieved, Ongoing, no longer a priority)
Our first priority was to develop in staff, parents and students a deeper understanding of new evangelisation. This priority was chosen after consultation with staff and as a continuation of work done in 2012.
  • professional learning to develop knowledge and a common understanding of the new evangelisation and its significance in the lives of the St Aidan's Primary School community
Our second priority was to continue to improve the literacy level of each student by building teacher capacity in reading/comprehension. This priority was chosen to consolidate the learnings of previous years.
  • implementing the Catholic Education, Diocese of Parramatta (CEDP) Focus 160 approach to the teaching of literacy
  • continue the Reading Recovery program
  • analysis of National Assessment Program -Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) and other available data
  • modelling of literacy techniques
  • regular feedback to teachers
Our third priority was to improve students' outcomes in numeracy, Kindergarten to Year 6 (K-6) This priority was chosen as a result of the analysis of the National Assessment Program-Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) results 2012.
  • appointment of a lead numeracy teacher
  • modelling of lessons
  • regular feedback to teachers
Not achieved


Projected school priorities


Reason for the priority

Steps to be taken to achieve the priority

Our first priority will be to deepen staff, parents' and students' relationships with Christ through the study of the Gospel of Matthe This was chosen to further the teachers' and parents' learning about the person of Christ in order to enhance the teaching of students.
  • professional workshops
  • newsletter inclusions
  • visiting speakers
  • inclusion in teaching programs 
Our second priority will be to use data effectively in order to improve the learning outcomes for each child in reading and writing. This priority was chosen as a result of NAPLAN results 2013.
  • continue the Focus 160 approach to teaching literacy
  • staff workshops
  • analysis of data
  • professional reading
Our third priority will be to use data to improve the learning outcomes for each child in numeracy.
This priority was chosen as a result of NAPLAN results 2013.
  • participate in the Diocesan Extending Mathematical Understanding (EMU) program
  • staff workshops
  • EMU leader's training 
  • analysis of data
  • professional reading

Catholic identity

Prayer, liturgical life and faith experiences

Students and staff were regularly involved in prayer and liturgical celebrations during 2013. A number of whole-school and grade masses were attended by students, staff, parents and the parish community. These liturgies celebrated feast days and special events. The Gospel of Luke became a focal part of prayer for staff and students and was integrated into the Sharing our Story units of work in Religious Education.

The Sacrament of Penance was available to students from Years 2 to 6 where appropriate.

Liturgies were held to celebrate Ash Wednesday, Holy Week, ANZAC Day, the Assumption, St Aidan’s Feast Day, Remembrance Day and many other important events.

Members of staff were invited to prepare and participate in staff prayer on a fortnightly basis. The main focus for prayer in 2013 was developing a closer relationship with Jesus through the Gospel of Luke. Staff also participated in a Lenten program in term 1, an Advent program in term 4 and a spiritual formation day in term 3.

Community prayer included the St Mary MacKillop novena for sick students as well as the November prayer cards for deceased family and friends. These cards were collected at the end of the month and presented as part of the offertory procession during a school mass at the end of November.

Social justice

St Aidan's Primary School promoted service to others and the school supported social justice in order to extend care to those in need. In 2013 this was achieved by:

  • donating to the Catholic agency for international aid and development; the bush fire appeal; the typhoon appeal in the Philippines and the Catholic mission
  • initiating a 'knitting club' to knit rugs for the needy
  • forming a 'student safety' committee to deal with social justice issues related to students
  • donating food and other items to the St Vincent de Paul Christmas appeal

School, home and parish partnerships

The school supported St Aidan’s parish during the parish Sacramental programs and worked closely with the parish priest to ensure unity and partnership between parish and school. As the parish Sacramental coordinator was a teacher at St Aidan’s Primary School the partnership between school and parish was enhanced greatly.

Catholic Schools Week was celebrated as a community of eight schools coming together for Sunday Mass at each of the parishes. Further to this, St Aidan's Primary School held an 'open afternoon' for parents and friends.

The regular St Aidan's Primary School liturgies were well-attended by parents and members of the parish during 2013. These events and occasions were advertised in the school’s newsletter; on the electronic school noticeboard and at morning assemblies.

Data collected from the annual Quality Catholic School's survey was completed by 60 parents chosen randomly. This data was used to inform future direction of the school. In 2013 literacy and Information Technology workshops were held for parents to keep them informed about 'best practice'.

Parents also assisted in a variety of ways throughout the year. Included in this were: classroom helpers; participation in school liturgies; fund raising; school excursions and sporting events.

Religious Education

Religious Education

The school followed the Diocesan Religious Education syllabus, Sharing Our Story.

Gospel values were central to the life of the St Aidan's community. Students were taught that religion is 'a way of life' as opposed to something that takes place at a set time each day. Therefore, Religious Education underpins all that happens each day.

In 2013, the Years 4 and 6 students participated in the Parramatta Diocesan Religious Literacy Assessment. Year 4 also completed a presentation section to this assessment and consequently more teaching time was devoted to the unit of work: 'Reconciliation: God's Forgiveness and Healing'.

Professional learning of staff in Religious Education

The formation goal for staff in 2013 was to develop a deeper understanding of the new evangelisation through studying the Gospel of Luke.

Staff participated in five workshops, one being a staff development day, during which they engaged in professional dialogue and prayer as they reflected on the person of Jesus. They were also provided with professional readings to assist them in better understanding the scriptures.

The intended outcome for teachers was for them to develop their understanding of Jesus further through Luke's Gospel and assist them in teaching the students about the person of Jesus.

Learning and teaching

National Assessment Program - Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) 2013

Students in Year 3 and Year 5 across Australia participated in National Assessment Program - Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) in May 2013. The purpose of this test is to provide information to parents and teachers about the achievements of students in aspects of Literacy and aspects of Numeracy. The test provides a measure of the students’ performance against established standards and against other students in Australia. Each year the results are analysed by the school to inform teaching with a view to improving student performance.

The Commonwealth Government sets minimum acceptable standards for literacy, numeracy, reading, writing, grammar, punctuation and spelling at particular ages. These are referred to as national minimum standards. Band 2 is the minimum standard for Year 3 and band 4 is the minimum standard for Year 5. Student performance in NAPLAN in our school is compared to these standards. The percentages of students achieving at or above these national minimum standards, and the percentages of students in the top three bands are reported in the table below.

 % of students at or above national minimum standard% of students in top three bands
Year 3:    
Literacy100.00 95.00 74.55 71.70
Numeracy92.70 95.80 56.36 62.00
Reading100.00 95.30 69.09 69.30
Writing92.70 95.00 76.36 75.40
Grammar and Punctuation96.40 95.30 67.27 73.40
Spelling100.00 93.90 85.45 67.40
Year 5:    
Literacy98.00 94.00 64.00 58.17
Numeracy94.00 93.40 28.00 51.70
Reading98.00 96.20 56.00 62.80
Writing98.00 91.70 58.00 51.90
Grammar and Punctuation96.00 94.80 58.00 61.50
Spelling96.00 93.10 76.00 58.30

Year 5 boys have improved by 28 scale scores from the 2012 data in the test aspect of reading. Year 3 girls are 43 scale scores above the state average in the test aspect of spelling. Year 5 girls are 27 scale scores above the state average growth in the test aspect of writing.

Year 3 girls have shown a decrease of 34 scale scores from the 2012 data in the test aspect of grammar and punctuation. Year 5 boys are 45 scale scores below the state average in the test aspect of numeracy.

School curriculum

As a result of 2013  National Assessment Program - Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) results, the school identified reading comprehension as well as writing and numeracy as areas for improvement. Number busting and open-ended tasks for numeracy were introduced into numeracy lessons.

All students were given the opportunity to attend different cultural activities in 2013. These included a visit to the  theatre for students from Kindergarten to Year 2; participating in a cartooning workshop by Years 3 and 4 and a visit from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) where students in Stage 3 took part in various activities involving renewable forms of energy.

The Strings program for Year 4 students continued in 2013 which also saw the commencement of a school band. Students in Years 4, 5 and 6 were encouraged to join the band and experience learning a range of brass and woodwind instruments.

The school radio program continued to entertain the community and again was operated by a committee of students from Years 4, 5 and 6.

A comprehensive Orientation program was held for students enrolled for Kindergarten, 2014. Each child visited the school twice and spent time getting to know teachers and other students as well as familiarising themselves with their surroundings

Year 6 students also attended transition days in order to prepare for their move to high school.

The school was involved in a number of co-curricular activities which included:

  • the Blacktown Zone swimming carnival
  • diocesan cross country and athletics carnival
  • soccer gala days
  • tabloid sports day
  • netball gala days
  • basketball gala days
  • voice of youth public speaking
  • intra-school public speaking opportunities
  • the knitting club
  • social justice fund raisers which included a school disco

Initiatives to promote respect and responsibility

Respect and responsibility were promoted through Religious Education lessons that were based on gospel values. They were also promoted through the teaching of personal development where students were taught social skills and responsibility towards themselves and others.

Each morning at assembly students were reminded that respect for each other was of primary importance.

Parent satisfaction with the school

During 2013, Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta engaged Insight SRC to conduct the Quality Catholic Schooling (QCS) survey to provide feedback from parents, students and staff about our school. This survey will be conducted annually.

The QCS data collected and reported showed that parents were very satisfied with the Catholic culture of the school, student safety and homework. Some parents believed that more could be done to highlight social justice and increase opportunities for extra-curricular activities.

Student satisfaction with the school

The QCS data showed that students felt connected to the school, were motivated to learn and engaged in their learning. There was some concern expressed about student safety and classroom behaviour.

Teacher satisfaction with the school

The QCS data showed that teachers were satisfied with curriculum processes, professional learning and feedback. They were challenged by work demands which they believed created individual distress.

Workforce composition

Number of Staff
Number of teachers who hold teaching qualifications from a higher education institution within Australia or as recognised by AEI-NOOSR*.
Number of teachers who have a bachelor degree from a higher education institution within Australian or within AEI-NOOSR* guidelines but lacking formal teacher qualifications.
Number of teachers who do not have qualifications as above but have relevant successful teaching experience or appropriate knowledge relevant to their teaching context.
Number of teachers accredited to teach Religious Education
Number of teachers currently undertaking accreditation to teach Religious Education
Number of non-teaching staff (includes teachers aides)
Percentage of teacher who are Indigenous  0

*Australian Education International - National Office of Overseas Skills Recognition

Professional learning

In 2013, professional learning included engagement in the following:

  • two day workshop on the new English syllabus
  • early years assessment training
  • case management workshops
  • The Emerging Leaders program
  • running record analysis
  • The Experienced Principals Mentoring program
  • Quality Catholic Schooling survey - training and analysis
  • principal's masterclass
  • Focus 160 literacy
  • EMU trainer course
  • Australian College of Educational Leaders Conference
  • Primary English Teachers Association (PETA) conference - Literacy and the Australian Curriculum
  • The New Evangelisation and Luke's Gospel

All staff meetings were conducted as professional learning workshops.

Teacher attendance and retention rates

Teacher attendance

The average teacher attendance for 2013 was 95.9%.

Teacher retention

Of the 2013 teaching staff, 92% were retained from 2012.

Student attendance rates

Percentage of student attendance by Year level and school average:

Kindergarten Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Year 6 School Average
 91.9  91.8 93.8 92.4 95.7 91.8 94.6  93.1

Managing non-attendance

Regular attendance at school is essential if students are to maximise their potential. Schools, in partnership with parents and guardians, are responsible for promoting the regular attendance of students. The compulsory schooling age is 6 to 17. Parents and guardians are legally responsible for the regular attendance of their children, explaining the absences of their children in writing within seven days to the school, and taking measures to resolve attendance issues involving their children. School staff, as part of their duty of care, monitor part or whole day absences. They maintain accurate records of student attendance, follow up unexplained absences through written and verbal communication, implement programs and practices to address attendance issues when they arise, and provide clear information to students and parents regarding attendance requirements and the consequences of unsatisfactory attendance. The principal or their delegate may grant permission for late arrival at school or early departure from school, leave, or exemption from attendance only in individual cases, on written request from parents and guardians. The principal/delegate will undertake all reasonable measures to contact parents promptly if an unexplained absence occurs. If truancy is suspected, the principal will contact the parents/guardians to ascertain the reason for the absence. If a satisfactory response is not received, the matter will be referred to Catholic Education Office staff for follow up.

Pastoral care of students

Student welfare, discipline and anti-bullying policies and pastoral care

The Pastoral Care and Student Management policy reflects the school’s motto, Together We Are One.

It included expectations of students’  behaviour both within and outside the learning space as well as stating the consequences of not meeting these expectations.

It has established procedures for managing student behaviour, based on the principles of procedural fairness.

The school’s aim is to develop shared understanding of student management in the context of pastoral care and to document procedures in the day-to-day management of student behaviour.

These procedures reflect care and regard for the dignity of the individual. The policy incorporates the following:

  • student welfare
  • anti-bullying
  • social skills
  • values education

Case management meetings were introduced in 2013. Present at meetings were the principal, learning support teacher, current teacher and previous teacher. The purpose of these weekly meetings was to address in a systematic way the academic and social needs of the most vulnerable students.The case management meetings proved to be very effective and provided an avenue for discussion about the student's needs and capabilities with a view to improving teaching and student outcomes.

The school’s Anti-bullying policy can be found in the St Aidan's Primary School's Pastoral Care and Student Management policy which is located on the St Aidan’s Primary School website, in the Parent Handbook and in the Staff Handbook.    

There were no changes to the policy in 2013.

The full text of the Pastoral Care and Student Management policy can be obtained on the school’s website.

Complaints and grievances policy

The school has formal written protocols in place to address complaints and grievances. These protocols are in line with the Catholic Education, Diocese of Parramatta Complaint Handling policy. A copy of the school policy is available from the school office or is available on the CEDP website There were no changes to the policy during 2013.

Financial statement

School recurrent and capital income

School recurrent and capital income

In 2013 St Aidan's Primary School received $110,974.00 as interest subsidy.

Our school community is appreciative of the support it received from the NSW State Government under the Interest Subsidy Scheme and looks forward to the implementation of the Building Grants Assistance Scheme as these are of vital importance to the ongoing wellbeing of this school.

Fees relate to diocesan and school based fees, excursions and other private income from fundraisers.

State relates to State Recurrent Grants including per capita funding, interest subsidy and special purpose grants.

Commonwealth relates to Commonwealth Recurrent Grants including per capita funding and special purpose grants.

Capital relates to Government Capital Grants including monies received under the Building Education Revolution.

Other refers to Other Capital Income including drawdowns from the Diocesan School Building Fund to fund Capital Expenditure.

School recurrent and capital expenditure

School recurrent and capital expenditure

Salary refers to the total of all Salaries, allowances and related expenses such as superannuation, workers compensation and leave.

Non-Salary refers to all other Non-Salary Recurrent Expenses.

Capital refers to Non-Recurrent Capital Expenditure including School Buildings, Furniture and Equipment.


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