Blog Post 7/3/19

To The School Community,

It is a relief to be writing this bulletin in a more forgiving week weather wise. I would like to thank the students and staff for their persistence in what was extremely hot weather last week. I am sure that the visits to the river after school for some families would have been part of the routine on hot days and I’m glad our students live in Barwon Heads.

Student Learning

Moving through the classrooms since my last Principal’s Bulletin has again drawn to my attention the need to share with you some of the strategies/tasks that teachers and students use in the classroom. An important part of developing and delivering a task for students is that the task caters for different needs and ability levels of the student in a cohort.

I want to share with you the process that the year 3 – 4  team are using to respond to the comprehension needs of the students. Through pretesting tools listed on our assessment schedule, the team is mapping the comprehension needs of the students in the cohort. Using the information about the students, the teachers are creating menus of strategies that best respond to the needs of the students delving into the DET Literacy Portal as well as Fountas and Pinnell (our main textbook for teaching reading) as the key resources for ideas. Added to this and most impressively the team has gone a fair way down the road in matching reading material to the types of comprehension strategies that will be taught to the students using the workshop model that has been successful at our school in the last 12-18 months. I would like to congratulate the staff on their efforts but most importantly how the students engage in reading to enable this to occur.

In the year 5/6 area, there has been a focus on Democracy leading up to the election that will occur in May sometime. The students are now in a phase where they are comparing and contrasting Australia’s Democracy to the other governments around the world. What stood out was the student’s ability to compare and contrast effectively and capture their thinking. The discussions around whether democracy was the most effective model of government was interesting, particularly when exploring countries where voting wasn’t compulsory.

Riding Safely

This year we have a record number of students at the school with an enrolment of 511. With this increase, there also comes with it a greater number of students who travel to and from school using their bikes.

We are fortunate to have such an active community who encourage active travel. Unfortunately this year there have been a number of reports of unsafe riding, particularly after school. I ask all parents to discuss riding safely which includes wearing helmets, not riding in groups across the width of the road. We have had 2 near misses that could have been much worse than a near miss.

Thinking this through further I am looking for a core group of parents to work with me in creating an initiative that involves Parents who can act as Ride Safe Supervisors walking school bus style from different points around Barwon Heads.

If you are somebody who already rides and would be interested in building this idea with me please contact me at school ASAP.

Other actions to be carried out will be an application to the COGG for increased signage in designated locations to create more awareness of our students riding home.

I will also be liaising with the Victoria Police – Bellarine- Community liaison to develop further strategies and possible responses.

Parent Partners

Parent partners have been finalised and ready to spring into action. In the next week your parent partner will set up a Facebook Page to use as the main source of communication for your class. It will be your responsibility to check the page if you choose. We have decided this is the best method to avoid over communication considering the school pushes out a great deal of information each week via Compass. If you are not a Face Book user please let us know and we will provide the Parent Partner with your email address.

The format for the pages will follow the structure in the examples below

BHPS – Grade 3/4E (Olsen) 2019

BHPS –  Prep A ( Harris) 2019

Try to join during next week next week if you can. The Parent Partners are looking forward to connecting with you to help you connect even more to our school.

This week is not an assembly week and I would like to remind you to check the calendar dates on the website or Compass.

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