Ongoing improvement – our learning community

In the last In Fide edition, I wrote about our Student Leaders making a commitment to improving the learning culture in their classes and across the school. The senior student’s focus on their studies has been exemplary to date, with many positive comments from students and teaching staff. Likewise, there are many positive examples of learning happening across Years 7-11 as they strive for personal excellence using the resources available to them at the school. Our teachers too are looking at continuous improvement to their teaching practices.

Parents I have spoken to during the term are inquisitive of the newly established Professional Learning Afternoons (PLAs). The introduction of the new PLAs is to further help our staff with their teaching practice.

The early finish for students has allowed time for our staff to better reflect on their teaching practice and implement positive changes to their teaching to improve student learning. It is allowing an opportunity to analyse individual and cohort data and interpret this to tailor lessons for each student. It is allowing teachers to go into depth with their own learning about our Catholic Carmelite story, researched based High Impact Teaching Strategies (HITS), our new Whitefriars Pedagogy, and Student Wellbeing strategies.

The teacher collaboration will improve teacher efficacy and even more explicit teaching instruction. Through working together in collaboration and having a belief that all students can achieve will benefit the results for each boy in our community.

The PLAs is giving staff time to use an action research approach to their learning, including coaching, seeking student feedback, classroom observations, professional reading and accessing best practice examples happening at universities or other schools. Teachers are driving improvement within our classrooms to ensure our boys are beneficiaries of curriculum development, innovative and thought-provoking pedagogy, and assessing for learning.

There have been many students who have accessed the Academic Study Centre after school on a Monday afternoon. For Year 12s this time on Day 6 provides a valuable time to work in the Academic Study Centre to prepare for the week ahead and assessments. A reminder that the Academic Study Centre is open on all Day 6s. The Library (7-10) and Academic Study Centre (11-12) are open each afternoon with supervision and support available, thus catering for all students.

Mr Mark Ashmore

Deputy Principal – Learning and Teaching