It is rare we have a quiet start to the year in a school. Here at MESC a quiet week is probably on the endangered list. The major reason for this is the undoubted commitment we all have for the continued improvement of our programs and growth of our students.
Angela Pollard has accepted a Senior Education Improvement Leader role supporting Northern Peninsula schools for most of Term 1. It is no surprise her skills have been sought to support and improve education beyond our walls. This is also a reflection of our work here at MESC and that we are part of a system. In Angela’s words “The appointment recognises the exceptional work that is occurring here at MESC and is an acknowledgement that the team we have in place is well-positioned to maintain our positive approaches to all we do. As an 'Influencer' school [the highest rating a school can be given by the Education Department], I also know that progress will continue.” I know the collective collaboration of the teams we have in place here at MESC and everyone continuing to work together has us well placed to navigate the next month. We also know Angela is only a phone call away.
The Year 7 Summit Camp was a great success. A big thank you to the staff who gave up their time supporting the camp. We are already seeing the benefits of this time spent together, with increased knowledge of the students and the connections the students have made with each other.
Last week our student leaders went on camp to Blairgowrie. I was lucky enough to have dinner with them on Thursday night and listen to leaders from all year levels present to the Mount Eliza Lions Club guests. Led superbly by our College Captains Trinity Joseph and Samantha Howlett all students impressed with their knowledge of our school and ideas for the year ahead. It was great to see students from year 8 to 12 working together. Student leaders from Year 7 will be selected in the coming weeks.
Congratulations to Kimmuli on their come from behind win at our Swimming Sports. Thank you to everyone who supported this whole school event and especially to Amy Leonard for her organisation and leadership of the day.
This year we have introduced important support for students in Monday afternoon Redemption. This weekly program has been created to support all of our students from Year 7 to 12 stay up to date with their learning. When a student falls behind with their school work or level of understanding without immediate action it can quickly domino into a greater gap. Our redemption program intends to recognise when this is occurring and provide students with the supervised time and support to catch up and move on to their next phase of learning.
I would like to share with you our key improvement strategies for 2020:
- Improve the impact of teaching through a whole school approach to data, including the generation, analysis and use of student achievement data to inform the design and differentiated learning opportunities for all students.
- Activate student voice and agency to establish an authentic learning partnership throughout the school which develops independent and self-regulating learners.
All staff are currently in the process of developing goals and strategies in relation to these with the aim of improving knowledge, teaching practice, engagement and most importantly student outcomes.
Looking forward to a very successful 2020 for Mount Eliza Secondary College.
YEAR 10 UPDATE
What a fantastic start to the year we have had as a Year 10 cohort.
I am incredibly impressed by how well the students have begun the year and all the work done by staff to assure the students in year 10 have had a positive start to 2020.
All students have been training for sports day during the past three Connect sessions and we have seen some outstanding sporting displays. Intermediate sport shall take place on the 18th of February. Good luck, everyone!
I am sure we shall achieve great things this year and look forward to keeping you all up to date with our progress.
LETTER TO PARENTS
The letter below was published at https://whatedsaid.wordpress.com/2019/09/13/an-open-letter-to-parents/ on 13 September 2019. As we work together at ensuring our students are ‘Happy’, ‘Smart’ and ‘Prepared’ for the life ahead, we would like our parents to consider this letter and think of different ways we talk to them to support rather than put pressure.
We know how much you love your children. Many of us are parents too and if we aren’t, you can rest assured that we wouldn’t be educators unless we cared deeply about children, so we know that many of the following things are important to you. Take a moment to consider which of these you most wish for…
- My child succeeds without struggle
- My child is above average at school
- My child is admired by others
- My child is well behaved and works hard to get good grades
- My child excels in sporting competitions
- My child produces impressive work at school
- My child is extended by her teachers
- My child’s class gets homework to help them do better at school
- My child is popular with his peers
- My child is always happy at school
Our teachers have been reading Contextual Wellbeing, by Helen Street, which is based on extensive research, and it turns out that the pressure induced by the items on this list, despite being instinctive desires of many parents, can actually undermine children’s wellbeing.
Now consider the list below…
- My child is valued as an individual
- My child feels a sense of belonging
- My child’s strengths matter more than his weaknesses
- My child is intrinsically motivated
- My child forms meaningful relationships
- My child experiences personal growth
- My child contributes to the community
- My child loves learning
- My child has ownership of her decisions and accepts the consequences
- My child is allowed to fail and learn from his mistakes
We asked parents who attended our informal session last week to sort all these aspirations into two groups. Once they got going, it quickly became clear which would put pressure on their children and which would support them in becoming well adjusted, valued and valuable members of society, content within themselves. We ask you to think about it too…
‘Wellbeing is a state of health, happiness and positive engagement that arises from membership of an equitable, inclusive and cohesive environment’ (Helen Street 2016 )