The term is progressing well and we have celebrated a number of key events, with others such as the ‘End of Year Christmas Concert’, ‘Year 7 Graduation’ and visits to 2019 classes, still to come!
Feedback from our Week 2 Children’s Week events has been fabulous, with many families commenting on the excellent Open Evening that showcased outstanding indoor and outdoor learning experiences. I would personally like to thank all the Governing Council members and family volunteers for assisting in the lead up to, and during the evening of, this night. A huge thank you to staff who also spent many hours organising, coordinating and ensuring a wide range of excellence in teaching and learning was showcased. A wide range of students also lead activities or performed in many ways and should be congratulated for their efforts to showcase our excellence in learning. The family feedback station was abuzz with ideas and we will be looking to determine the new name for our oval nature area from all the children’s creative suggestions. Governing Council have had the opportunity to review and discuss the parent opinion feedback responses. They have prioritised: a whole-school review of behaviour management, and our whole-school processes and teacher feedback to families about their children’s learning, as key goals to work on for our next stages of school improvement.
Pupil Free Day
Staff worked together to analyse a wide range of information to determine next steps to ensure West Lakes Shore School continues to aim for excellence in everything we do, and supports and encourages every child to achieve and do their very best. Well being data, staff and community feedback, and whole-school learner data outcomes will be analysed to prioritise key actions for our 2019-2021 strategic plan.
Class Structures 2019
The Parent opinion survey indicated the need for communication around composite classes and how and why they are created. In 2019 West Lakes Shore School R-7 will have around 612 students of varying year levels to organise into classes. Funding allocation for staffing these classes is based on a set figure per student. The school Personal Advisory Committee (PAC), consisting of the Principal and voted staff representatives, work to align the number of students and our staffing funding to determine future class structures. This work is guided by agreements around class sizes in each year level. As West Lakes Shore School is a category 6 school we work within the guidelines of between 24-26 students in each Reception to Year 2 class. In Year 3 we have between 28-30 students per class and in Years 4-7 around 30 students per class. As the number of students in each year level changes this means we identify across the whole-school a class structure that incorporates both straight and composite classes.
In all of these classes students have a wide range of abilities; research shows that teachers can be planning to support students who are performing with learning abilities of up to 7 years difference. What makes a quality learning program for every child is the teacher’s ability to differentiate for each learner; the teacher’s skill and quality approach to engage learners; and the feedback teachers provide to learners to support them to progress and improve their learning.
At West Lakes Shore School R-7, composite classes are created with a range of abilities of children in both year levels i.e. a Year 1/2 class would have students of all abilities in Year 1 and students of all abilities in Year 2.
Composite classes are created with less complexity in terms of need and have teachers who are skilled in differentiating for each learner. Composite classes are also supported with an additional teacher during the teaching of the relevant Year Level key Science curriculum areas.
At some point in your child’s time at West Lakes Shore School they are likely to be placed in a composite class. We will endeavour to ensure, wherever possible, that this does not occur for two consecutive years should class structures enable this. Family requests for children to not be placed in a composite class need a substantiated reason so PAC can consider this fairly in the context of our whole-school class structures process.
Family requests and information to support your child’s placement for 2019 closed at the end of week 1 this term. Due to the timelines and complexity of the class structure process we are now no longer able to accept any additional requests. All staff are working hard to consider parental input, alongside their professional knowledge and understanding of each individual child so we can balance classes and ensure all students are set up for the best possible success in 2019.
Should you have any specific questions in regards to class structures please feel free to contact firstname.lastname@example.org