Principal Team Report
It is very impressive how quickly our new Year 7 students have settled in to the routines of secondary school. After only three weeks, they are navigating the timetable and the College grounds like experts, they have transferred from “tubs” to “lockers” and “play" to “recess” and they certainly look like they feel at home. Last week we shared an evening of music, food and activities with many of our Year 7s and their families at the Year 7 Welcome Picnic. It was a very pleasant evening, not too hot and not too cold, Goldilocks would have been very happy! Many staff were present and the musical performances were a real highlight. We were well supported by members of the PFA and student leadership team and Ray White Real Estate once again sponsored a coffee van for the evening. Preparations are well underway for the Year 7 Camp which departs next week and we are pleased that all Year 7 students will be attending this transition camp. Last Friday they were welcomed to their first whole school assembly and we “badged” our current Year 12s in recognition of their final year at our College. Friday will be the first introduction for our Year 7s to our whole school swimming carnival, once again we are hopeful of pleasant weather.
Over the last three weeks Marianne and I have spent a number of days visiting classrooms across College. We have not only been pleased with how well the Year 7s have settled but also the whole school. Our classrooms are calm learning environments where teachers are clearly planning carefully structured and engaging lessons and students are active learners. If you are wondering what is happening in your son/daughter's classroom please take some time to consult Compass to view Course outlines and lesson plans. This will provide you with valuable information to assist conversations around the learning that is happening every day. Many classes are coming to the end of the first unit of work and so assessment tasks and SACs (School Assessed Coursework – for VCE Unit ¾ subjects) are currently being posted with feedback. This information will form part of the conversations which will take place during Parent/Teacher/Student conferences on 3 April.
Last week Paul Hamer, Member for Box Hill in the Victorian State Parliament, joined the Principal team, Mat Douglas, our facilities officer, and our College Council President, Kyle Joustra, on one of our tours of the school. Paul replaced Robert Clark in the recent State election. Paul indicated that he had been made aware of our need for an injection of funding by many members of the wider community and he was keen to see first-hand the condition of our buildings. We will continue to lobby hard for additional funding for our College and hope our community will support us to ensure that the needs of Koonung Secondary College are high on the Government’s priority list.
This week, Conor Sheehan and the Senior School team have conducted two information evenings. The first, on Monday night, provided valuable information to parents and students undertaking their VCE (Years 11 and 12). Chris Sheehan detailed information about the structure and processes that govern the VCE, Karen Riding outlined the career pathways that students need to start investigating from as early as Year 10 and Conor covered helpful advice to support students and parents navigate these two very demanding years. On Tuesday night the team welcomed the the parents of Year 10 students into the Senior School. This is an important year for our students as they move out of the comfort of their form group and really start to explore their passions and find their future direction. Once again we are very fortunate to have Karen Riding and the careers staff to support our students to navigate this complex environment. We were very pleased with the extremely high attendance rate at these two evenings. We often refer to the importance of a partnership between students, parents and staff and it is so pleasing to see that this partnership is extremely strong at Koonung.