Italian Bilingual School

Italian Bilingual School

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Italian Bilingual School

Excellence through Bilingualism

Preps Information Handbook

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Italian Bilingual School

Excellence through Bilingualism

SCHOOL: 30-32 See Street, Meadowbank NSW 2114

Telephone: 9807 2272 Fax: 9807 8020

Website Address:

Email Address: info


This booklet is intended as a guide to support you to get to know the routines and expectations regarding the preschool’s organisation. Of course, if you cannot find the answer to your query in this booklet, please don’t hesitate to ask your child’s teacher.

Facts About Our Preparatory Program

Welcome to the Italian Bilingual School Preps. Our school was established in 2002 with seven students at Five Dock Public School and moved to Casa d’Italia where it has grown and developed into one of the most incredible bilingual programs in Australia. The school moved to new premises at Meadowbank in 2013.


The Preps offers a full day program five days a week with your choice of days.


Preps may arrive at school from 8:45am and their lessons will start at 9:15am. Children may be collected at 3:00pm each day or wait for the bus to take them back to Leichhardt for OOSH. The Preps is closed on public holidays and during school vacation periods.


The Preps is staffed by an English and Italian teacher who both work with the students at different times of the day. They are supported by a Teacher’s Aide and are given a very structured program.


1. The Italian Bilingual School aims to provide a bilingual and bicultural education incorporating a European perspective, thus leading to a broadening of students’ personal and educational horizons.

2. The Italian Bilingual School aims to foster the development of the individual child, helping in the realization of individual talents and promoting a global education which acknowledges the interconnectedness of cultures and languages.

3. The Italian Bilingual School has at its core the aim of promoting the English and Italian languages and cultures amongst the wider community.

4. The school is inclusive, co-educational and non-denominational.

5. The school promotes respect for self and others; understanding; a life-long love of learning and the ability to think creatively, critically and independently.

Learning to understand, speak, read, write and think in two or more languages opens up whole worlds of possibilities for children and adults alike. The experience can be both empowering and liberating; one is not constrained by the boundaries inherent in any one language or culture, but rather is able to see beyond, to explore, understand and appreciate the wealth that is to be found in each and every language.



Hair eye colour 001The Italian Bilingual School offers Preps classes for four year old children with the aim to:

  1. assist children to adjust to the highly structured nature of formal schooling and
  1. help them to become accustomed to a bilingual environment and, in particular, to the sound of the Italian language.

The Prep class, provided within the facilities of the Italian Bilingual School, comprises a structured program where the children are exposed to the Italian and the English language every day. In the course of the day children work at their desks as well as on floor activities in group work, pair work and individual work. The program focuses on the development of early literacy and numeracy skills, linking the children’s skill development in logical progression to that of Kindergarten students.

In keeping with the teaching methodology utilised by the school, students learn by being immersed in the language; they learn through the language rather than just ‘about’ the language. Hence, no translation takes place; it is therefore important to be mindful of this fact when determining the extent to which the children are able to produce the language. The time required before children are able to produce the language will vary from individual to individual; research points to a five year period necessary to acquire a second language. In summary, children derive a lot of enjoyment from their learning; it is important not to hinder this by placing expectations on them too early: a little patience and understanding of the complexities of the process of learning a second language will go a long way to ensuring a positive and constructive experience for you and your child.

Readiness of children

IMG 1490In order to attend the Preps class children must be four years of age.

Whilst the age of four is the entry point into the Preps class, it is imperative that children have a reasonable degree of self-sufficiency before they can be accepted due to the highly structured nature of the program.

This includes being able to attend to themselves in the toilet; being able to change clothes if needed; to open and close lunch containers; to take turns; to listen and follow the teacher’s instructions; to stay on task for longer periods of time; to share with other children; to understand the ‘hands off’ rule of the school. It may not be possible to assess a child’s readiness until they actually begin, therefore, if the teachers determine, that while the child may be four, they are not quite ready for this particular context, we would communicate this to you within the first two weeks of attendance.

IMG 1496



Summer uniform

White polo t-shirt (logo to be purchased from Reception and sewn onto t-shirt)

Navy shorts

Running shoes

IBS school hat

Winter uniform

White polo t-shirt (logo to be purchased from Reception and sewn onto t-shirt)

Navy track suit pants

Navy jumper

Running shoes

IBS school hat

Uniform may be purchased from Kmart, Best and Less or Target.


The school day begins at 9.15am and ends at 3.00pm for students attending Preps classes. It is imperative that you collect your child on time as this then enables the families of the Primary students to collect their children at 3.15pm.

IBS has a Kiss and Drop Zone at the front of the school in See Street. Parents can utilise this area in the morning and afternoons. Parents can also find street parking in the surrounding areas of the school and make their way to the front gate where they can leave their children to enter the school grounds.

Should you need to collect your child at any other time on any occasion; you need to notify the school in writing by completing an ‘Early Release Form’ (pink) available from the front office.

Entry and Exit to the School


1) A Kiss and Drop zone can be used by parents ‘dropping off’ and ‘picking up’ students.

2) Students/Parents are to enter through the main gate on See St. The students place their bag on the appropriate line and go to the playground area where they will be supervised by a teacher.


1) A Kiss and Drop zone can be used by parents ‘dropping off’ and ‘picking up’ students.

2) Preps parents can collect their children at 3:00pm from the assigned area.

Parents/caregivers need to notify the school in the event of someone else collecting their child. Proof of identity may be required if the person is not known to the staff.

Custody of children

Please provide the school with a certified copy of a Court order if you have sole custody of your child/children.

Change of address

It is important that the school be notified of any change of address, telephone numbers or other relevant contact information. Please ensure that you do so as soon as any changes to the details provided to the school become applicable.


Please contact the school in the morning to notify of any absence. On your child’s return, an Absentee (green) note must be given to the class teacher stating the date/s of absence and reason; these must be signed by the primary caregiver. A medical certificate is required where an absence exceeds three days, unless extended leave has been previously requested in writing and granted by the school (eg. for an overseas trip).

Disease and illness

Children with infectious diseases must remain away from school for the period as stated by the Health Department. Please consult with your doctor before returning your child to school.

Children who have not been immunised against tetanus, diphtheria, whooping cough, polio, measles, mumps and rubella, must remain at home if there is an outbreak within the school.

Parents must notify the school if your child has contracted an infectious


General guideline for time away from school:-

Mumps –14 days after swelling appears
Rubella – 4 days after rash appears
Conjunctivitis-doctor's advice
Whooping Cough – 14 days and other family members 14 days after exposure
Chicken Pox /Measles- doctor's advice

Medicines (policy extract)

Medicines can be administered to students by the Senior First Aid Officer only upon presentation of an Authorisation to Administer Medication Form (Yellow). Medications are to be handed to the Administration

Coordinator, they must not be left in the student’s bag. These are to then be collected by the parent/caregiver each afternoon.

Parents are required to provide updated information regarding their children’s health, including changes to medical practitioner contact details and any other relevant information that will assist us in caring for the welfare of our students.

Discipline (policy extract)

Discipline is a continuous process of learning and development of skills and behaviour. We at the Italian Bilingual School are committed to fostering the development of responsible and caring individuals who are able to understand the consequences of their behaviour and make choices accordingly.

Our approach to discipline is tempered by a philosophy based on the values of self respect, respect for others and justice. We provide a structured environment in which those value systems are embedded and guide our students towards self-discipline and independence. Our discipline procedures aim to help children:

  • become aware of the rights of individuals;
  • find alternatives for conflict resolution;
  • be consistent and fair;
  • understand clear, fair and reasonable rules;
  • own their behaviour and learn to accept the consequences of their actions;
  • learn to cooperate with others.

We have three basic pillars ….. That Students should be “Safe Respectful Learners”

The Italian Bilingual School does not explicitly or implicitly sanction corporal punishment by any agent, including parents, to enforce discipline at the school.

Sun safety (policy extract)

The school has a ‘no hat, no play’ policy, it is therefore essential that every student has his/her hat with them every day. In the interest of sun safety, students should also wear their hats to and from school if they are to walk any distance. Regulation IBS hats are available and may be purchased directly from the school.

Students are encouraged to use sun block particularly during the warmer times of the year.

Parents / Carers and IBS

We, as your child’s educators, see our role as a collaborative one with that of our students’ families; we therefore strongly encourage participation from parents/carers where this fits with the wishes and availability in each individual situation. There is absolutely no obligation to be directly involved with the school unless you so wish.

How can I be involved in my child’s schooling?

There are a number of options available to people wanting to be directly involved in their child’s schooling, some examples are:

  • Shared reading activities
  • Shared writing activities
  • Shared computer activities
  • Helping with art and craft activities
  • Helping to prepare costumes/props for special occasions
  • Assisting during excursions

The best way to become involved in the IBS school community is through the P&F association. The association works closely with the school to support its aims and objectives and to promote a close-knit relationship among our families.

Communication and information

At IBS we value open communication and encourage you to contact us as the need arises. Should you wish to discuss any aspect of your child’s schooling with the teacher, you can arrange a mutually convenient time to do so. You may make an appointment to speak to the teacher either directly by speaking with the teacher after school, or by telephoning reception and advising the teacher that you would like them to return your call so that you may arrange a suitable time.

The school also issues a bi-weekly newsletter (email, hard copy or both) providing information and news concerning the school community. The school website provides a vast array of information including a school events calendar, recent news, copy of the Newsletter, multimedia clips and class presentations.

A notice board displaying general information relevant to all students is placed in the corridor for regular viewing.



Fees for the Preps Program are payable in the first week of each Term. Payment may be made directly to the school by direct transfer, cash, credit card or cheques made out to IBS or Co.As.It. No refunds will be given for withdrawal or non attendance. Please note: late payment of fees may jeopardise your child’s enrolment.

Please familiarise yourself with the Terms and Conditions document you have signed as part of the enrolment process. The document contains important information regarding the implications of late or non-payment of fees.

Prohibited items

The following items ARE NOT ALLOWED:

  • Chewing gum;
  • CD or cassette players; iPods, ipads from home.
  • bats and toy weapons;
  • expensive toys, e.g. Gameboy or swap cards

Recess and lunch

At IBS we encourage healthy eating habits. The IBS Canteen adheres to the NSW Canteen Association’s healthy food policies and is run according to the standards set by the Association.

Children learn about nutrition and a healthy lifestyle in their curriculum studies from the earliest stages of schooling, it is therefore important to continue to encourage them to make good choices, this does not mean that they should not have special treats, rather that they should not be the basis of their daily food intake. It is also a good idea to involve the children in the decision making process when organizing their lunch and recess if possible.

It is important to ensure that your child can open and close any containers without too much difficulty as this also promotes independence and confidence. Some food items can be quite messy for the children, so please keep this in mind; again the easier it is for the child to eat his/her lunch the better, particularly as they will want to have enough time left for free play.