From the Principal
Last Saturday, August 26, it was wonderful to be able to open the Secondary Campus for our 2017 Open Day. A record high number of 73 families toured the school, as a demonstration of the excellent and growing reputation the College has in the area.
Families had an opportunity to tour classrooms and see the innovative learning experiences that are on offer to our students, witness the Creative Arts Precinct alive with singing, art work, dance and drama, see GBC matches in full swing, and come to learn more about the developments at the College for 2018 which include new subjects for Year 7 and 8 students, a new Year 7 Precinct designed around the learning and student care needs of that year group, and the opening of our new Resource Centre.
As the day unfolded and afterwards, we received consistently high praise for our student guides. Visitors spoke about their warmth, initiative and friendliness. I am very proud of them all, and thank them for being fabulous ambassadors for the College.
The Secondary Campus was buzzing with activity and positivity, and it was wonderful to be a part of it.
Over the past few months, conscious of our responsibility to provide excellent teaching and learning outcomes for our students, the College has formed a working group, consisting of staff from both campuses, to look at ways to further strengthen the academic outcomes of all students across the College. As part of this process, the Strengthening Academic Outcomes Working Group has worked collaboratively to devise a new Learner Framework, which will help to provide even greater consistency to the ways in which teachers approach their lessons and provide a central focus for the exit outcomes we have for our graduates.
The Learner Framework will be implemented in 2018, and will underpin all learning experiences for students from Kindergarten to Year 12. The Learner Framework has been devised to complement our learning experiences under the Australian Curriculum, and advance our abilities to deliver high quality outcomes in the core areas of literacy, numeracy and digital literacy.
Coming out of the Learner Framework will be very targeted professional development for staff to ensure that all staff are equipped with the knowledge, skills and strategies to assist students in developing their abilities across the 6 areas identified in the framework, areas which are identified by leaders in the field as crucial for young people to develop today and for their futures.
Microsoft Innovative Educator
At TSAC, our wonderful teaching staff are fully committed to lifelong learning and being at the cutting edge of developments in teaching and learning in their fields. As a College, we encourage them in this and invest in their professional development. One such example is Laura Bain, Primary eLearning Coordinator, who we learned this week has been accepted as a Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert.
MIE Experts are teachers selected for their global educational vision in the ways that they use technology to pave the way for better learning and student outcomes. MIE Experts work hand-in-hand with Microsoft to lead innovation in education, advocate for the effective use of technology in the classroom, share ideas with a global network of peers, and become thought leaders in the edtech space.
In order to reach Expert status, Laura had to gain MIE accreditation, which is achieved after completing hours of online study and participation in the Microsoft Educator Community. She then submitted a digital portfolio of her work with students, and provided examples of innovative practices with technology.
Gaining Expert status is far from easy, and in the 30 years that the program has been running there are less than 90 MIE Experts in Australia.
We are very proud of Laura for her achievement which, combined with her existing Certified Apple Teacher status, means that your children are being taught by a highly qualified and expert leader in her field.
Chelsea Livingston – USQ Get Writing Prize
This week, Dr Sharon Bickle, lecturer in English Literature at USQ, visited Secondary assembly to award Year 9 student Chelsea Livingston with her first and second prizes in a national creative writing competition.
The national competition provided secondary aged students with an opportunity to submit poetry or short story entries. Chelsea submitted both, and out of a field of 200 entries won the short story competition with her story called ‘A Forgotten Past’ and came runner up with her poem, ‘Stained’.
Dr Bickle, a judge for the competition, said that ‘often when we are judging the stories, the judges disagree about which story should get the prize — then we have to argue it out until we come to a decision. This year, both judges were in complete agreement — Chelsea’s story was significantly better than all the other stories.’ She went on to say that the winning of these awards confirms Chelsea ‘as one of the most promising of Australia’s young writers.’
We are very proud of Chelsea, and will keep a close eye on her progress as a writer. I encourage you to follow the links below, where you can read Chelsea’s two award winning pieces.