Principal's Report 

From Christian's desk....

World Teachers’ Day

Tomorrow is World Teachers’ Day. This year, more than ever, I’m sure you’d agree our teachers are deserving of a HUGE acknowledgement! Their dedication and commitment towards improving the lives of the children in their care this year has been nothing short of sensational.

You are the school’s greatest resource!

 

Event Days in Week 5

Don’t forget to wear something bright to ‘Colour Your Threads’ next Wednesday, November 4th, as the school celebrates Positive Education Day. On Thursday 5th the school will engage in Outdoor Classroom Day – don’t forget your hats!

 

K-P Transition & Y6 Graduation

Following the latest easing of COVID-related restrictions, our staff have been putting in place adjusted plans for both K-P Transition and Year 6 Graduation. We have set aside dates to allow our 2021 Preps an initial three, thirty-minute sessions of on-site transition alongside nine of their future classmates.  At this stage we’re still restricted in regards to the adults who are able to attend Year 6 Graduation, however it looks like it could be ‘otherwise normal’ for our Graduating Class of 2020. 

Relative to both, we still hold out hope that the restrictions will ease further.  It is our hope that all Prep 2021 students will be able to have a ‘Meet Your Teacher’ transition session together.  We’d love to have some ability for parent attendance for Year 6 Graduation; in the meantime, live streaming or videoing are options we’re exploring.

Thank you to the staff for their tireless work in planning and re-planning in this ever-changing landscape. Your collective ongoing dedication to provide the students with the best possible experience is extremely admirable.

In the meantime, here's some pics of last year's Graduation celebrations, to get you in the mood:

 

Tutors in schools  

Recently Education Minister Merlino announced additional funding would be provided to schools to employ tutors to support students whose academic growth has been adversely impacted over the period of Remote Learning. At this stage there isn’t much to report from DET in this area, other than the closing date for suitably qualified professionals is 8th November.  Our school will look to enriching our already strong Learning Enhancement program with our allocation of resources, once they become available.

Parent Opinion Survey

All school families have this year been invited to share their views about our school, via the Department of Education's Parent Opinion Survey.  This survey is available online until November 13th and our secure link is sitting on your Compass landing page.  If you have not already done so, please take the time to complete this survey.  Your feedback is anonymous and gives us valuable insight into future planning.  The Department is also watching our response rate, so please take the time to let them know you care.

Student Attitudes to School Survey

Annually, students in Years 4 – 6 are invited to participate in the Department of Education and Training Student Attitudes to School Survey (AtoSS). The information below outlines the purpose, confidentiality measures and opt out options. 

About the survey

We value student voice as a means to improving student engagement, wellbeing and quality instruction and are conducting a survey to find out what your child thinks of our school. 

The AtoSS is an annual student survey offered by the Department of Education and Training to assist schools in gaining an understanding of students' perceptions and experience of school. 

This year, the survey also includes some questions about student health and wellbeing and student perceptions of COVID-19. Understanding health and wellbeing needs has always been important, but especially so this year, and the Department is providing this survey to allow schools to capture this information to support students. Students will be asked about their thoughts and feelings in relation to their school, family, friends, health (including mental health) and wellbeing, and bullying.

The health and wellbeing questions are taken from another Department survey called the Victorian Student Health and Wellbeing Survey (VSHAWS) that has been conducted with a sample of schools in Victoria since 2014. The questions about COVID-19 have been developed by or recommended by the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute. 

This year, the AtoSS will be conducted over the period Thursday 5 November to Friday 13 November.

What are the risks?

While we do not anticipate many risks of participation, some students may find the survey questions to be more personal and sensitive in nature this year. Should you agree for your child to participate, they are still free to skip questions or to withdraw at any stage if the survey makes them upset or uncomfortable.

What are the benefits?

In our experience, the majority of young people enjoy having the chance to have their say. Our school will use the survey results to plan programs and activities to improve your child's schooling experience.

What will my child be asked to do?

Your child will be invited to complete the survey online during class time using a purpose built secure online survey tool.  It is important to note that we are not in any way “testing” your child. Please note:

  • Student participation in the survey is voluntary and students may withdraw at any time.
  • The survey will take around 30-40 minutes to complete.  How is my child’s confidentiality protected?

Your child will be provided with a unique login to complete the survey from their teacher. The student login is an assigned identifier that may be used to link data for statistical and research purposes only. Personally identifiable data will not be recorded in the survey response file. This ensures that the confidentiality of your child’s responses is protected at all times.

How will results be reported?

The survey results will be reported back to the school in an aggregate form in term 4. All survey data that is made available in reports are for groups of students only so that no individual student can be identified. Data suppression rules are used for schools with low student numbers per year level.

Options for participation

Participation in this survey is voluntary. If you do not wish for your child to do the survey, please opt out via email to: 

Leigh.Dixon@education.vic.gov.au (Senior School students) or Liam.Sommers@education.vic.gov.au (Year 4 students).

Please do so before Wednesday 4 November stating that you wish to opt out of your child’s participation, along with their name, school and year level.

If the school does not receive a Refusal of Consent email from yourself before the survey commencement date mentioned within this letter, it means that you give your consent for your child to participate in the 2020 Attitudes to School Survey.

A copy of the survey that we are asking your child to complete is available. Please contact the administration office if you would like to see the survey before making your decision about whether you would like your child to participate. 

If you would like more information, please speak to Leigh Dixon (Senior), Liam Sommers (Year 4), or contact the Department at attitudes.school.survey@education.vic.gov.au.

Christian Holdsworth  -  Principal