Assistant Principal - Senior School
First term is always a busy one and this year has been no exception. Senior students have settled into their classes well and the Jumpstart program at the end of 2020 helped to facilitate a smooth start to the year as students were already familiar with their classes and teachers. Already this year we have completed College photos, the swimming carnival in Glen Waverley, the school athletics carnival and student and parent Information Evenings for Years 10 and 11. The Year 12 VCE Information session, which was cancelled due to the snap lockdown, has been recorded and can be accessed on the website. We appreciate the support of all students and parents who attended these evenings which are an important medium of communication between the school and the home, ensuring that parents and students can stay abreast of the programs that students are undertaking and the important school policies and procedures that apply in the senior years of school. We trust that those who attended found these sessions worthwhile.
The second progress reports can be accessed on the Compass portal. We urge students to address any concerns that may be highlighted on them at this early stage, as falling behind can lead to a cumulative effect which can become a major hurdle unless remedial action is taken. Students need to make the effort to address overdue work immediately and can seek support from their teachers if required. Parent Teacher Interviews are an excellent opportunity to meet your child’s teachers and to discuss progress and improvement strategies face-to-face. I also remind parents and students that after school classes are held every Wednesday and Thursday in the Library and are available to all year levels. These classes are an excellent opportunity for students to complete work or do further study with the assistance and support of subject specific teachers.
Assistant Principal - Junior School
It is with great pleasure that I welcome to the college newsletter for the first time the families of all our new Year 7 students. The decision of which secondary school to send your child to is a huge one which all parents make with thought and care. As a college, we take this responsibility very seriously. As the Assistant Principal looking after your children for the first three years, I look forward to working with all the college stakeholders to ensure that all students maximize their learning outcomes and achieve their educational potential as well as providing a safe, supportive and caring environment. As a college, we welcome communication and feedback from our parents and look forward to developing a partnership that benefits the education of all students. Mr Drew King, Ms Lauren Grace, Mr Stephen Baxter and Ms Stephanie Ellin along with the very experienced Year 7 and Transition Head Ms. Brooke Mollenkopf, will be there all the way to support this important period of your child’s educational life.
At this stage of the year it is worth reminding all students of the college about their responsibilities in regard to the colleges extensive bussing network. Dromana College is very unique in that nearly all of our students rely on a bus service to get to school. At present these buses are at full capacity, and we are also providing back up buses on some routes. Students have a responsibility on these buses to always behave in a manner that ensures the safety of all travellers and reflects the colleges values. A bus driver has the huge responsibility of ensuring 57 travellers arrive at school safely, so it is imperative that all students act responsibly and in accordance with the conditions of bus travel, which is located on the school web site. If students breach the behavioural code of conduct, they are given an official warning in writing, if there are two such breaches the student can be removed from this bus service for six days. Our students have a reputation of being well behaved and respectful to the drivers and other passengers and we want this to continue in the future.
It was great attending the Year 7 camp this year. This was a fantastic opportunity for students to broaden their relationships with other students and the Year 7 staff, and to have a wonderful experience. It is always a highlight of their first year at Dromana College.
There is so much to be positive about at Dromana College in 2021. We are at school, face to face learning, developing relationships in person and not over a screen, and accessing all the wonderful curriculum and enhancement programs that Dromana College offers. I look forward to working with all Dromana College stakeholders to ensure that all students achieve their personal best and have a wonderful 2021.
Assistant Principal - Teaching and Learning
It has been a great start to the year, with all students now settled and enjoying their programs for Term 1. Dromana College is committed to providing an extensive teaching and learning program that supports all students to pursue their passions, as well as exploring new interests in a supportive and challenging learning environment. Our students can also access a wide range of enhancement and extension programs that are offered adjacent to the school day. In 2021 we are excited to have over 300 students arriving early and staying late to enjoy athletics, journalism, musical theatre, cycling and art amongst many others.
One of our Education State priorities for 2021 is learning catch-up and extension. I am immensely proud of the work that has already been implemented across our college in this area. We welcomed a number of tutors into our classrooms in Term 1 and they have been doing exceptional work with our students – supporting continued learning growth and the achievement of fundamental literacy and numeracy skills. In addition to the work of our tutors, a wide range of targeted support programs have also enabled our students see improved success with their learning. Already a very promising indication of student learning achievements to come.
Our collective focus for this year is goal setting. We pride ourselves on holding high expectations of all students and are in the process of developing a whole school goal setting framework that will support students to set similarly high expectations of themselves. As part of this work we were fortunate to have Elevate Education present to each year level at the start of the year in areas such as study skills, memory and mnemonics, time management and exam preparation. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive.
On Tuesday 16th March 2021 we held a practice NAPLAN test with our Year 9 students so that we could identify areas for growth and improvement prior to the formal tests in May. I speak on behalf of the whole Year 9 team when I say how impressed we were with the behaviour and attitude of our Year 9 cohort. Every student upheld our college value of Personal Best and the results from these diagnostic tests are already a cause for celebration. We look forward with optimism to celebrating the growth and achievement of our Year 9 students again in May.
I would like to give a special mention to the new staff that have joined our teaching team this year. They have already established great relationships with their classes, and I have every confidence they will have a positive impact on the learning outcomes of their students. Welcome!
After a long year of moving in and out of the remote learning environment it is great to finally see and hear the energy and enthusiasm of students back in their classrooms with their teachers and peers and I am motivated for a positive and productive 2021 onsite at our wonderful college.