From The Principal
Post Fire Recovery at Senior School - Waurn Ponds
It has been remarkable in the weeks post the fire that occurred at our Senior School, to see the resilient, cooperative and positive response that the students and staff of this community have shared. There have been many concessions and adjustments, including changes to learning spaces and offices and the lack of a staffroom and library to overcome.
In spite of these challenges, our community has continued to function highly and efficiently with minimum disruption and many examples of individuals going ‘the extra mile’.
Behind the scenes there has also been a wonderful team of building, maintenance, IT and administration staff who have worked tirelessly to support the teaching and learning program to continue to operate as required.
This week, the temporary library has opened with the first set of furniture and books returning, creating a warm, comfortable place for the students and staff to gather and work or relax. Next week we will see additional shelving in place to house the next delivery of resources.
I am extremely grateful to our insurers, the staff and the students for the cooperative way they have worked together to commence the process of recovery.
We will soon see the completion of the temporary offices and administration areas and the provision of a staffroom to further this recovery process.
The College leadership team has been working diligently with the insurance company to ensure that the rebuilding process of the damaged facilities was well in-hand and able to commence in a timely fashion.
Each year our College provides students in Year 11 with the opportunity to participate in Debutante Balls held in a transformed, Sports & Aquatic Centre at Middle School - Highton. After 10 weeks of practice and preparation these young men and women presented dance sets in front of their family and friends. Whilst considered by some to be old fashioned, it amazes me each year the number of students (almost 150 this year) who wish to participate in traditional dance lessons and at such a formal occasion.
For me each year, the highlight is the manner in which our fine young people conduct themselves, sharing a wonderful evening with their family and friends. I want to thank the staff and families, and particularly all of the students involved for creating such a memorable night.
Professor Guy Claxton
A highlight of the College teaching and learning initiatives that we have been introducing over the past 5 years, has been the work we have been doing with renowned and world acclaimed educational leader, Professor Guy Claxton from Kings College in London.
Professor Claxton has been a key influence on the development of 21st Century learning in many countries throughout the world for a number of years. He is a respected author and speaker of note at prominent Educational Conferences around the world.
Christian College has been privileged to work closely with Guy over the past 5 years. He has worked thoroughly with our leadership team, individual staff and visited classrooms to work with students, making a significant contribution to the positive progress we are taking to deliver, ‘The Learning That Matters’.
On Tuesday this week, Professor Claxton returned to spend the day within our community speaking with groups of staff, visiting classrooms and addressing all teaching staff in the evening. His powerful message around the concept of ‘Learning…Plus…’ was inspiring.
One member of staff summed the session with all staff as follows,
“It was very refreshing to hear Guy speak, he was able to sift through the plethora of contemporary ideas around education, and highlight the key areas in which education can take a purposeful and deliberate step forward. From my perspective, the following points stood out from the notes that I took on the night.”
- ‘Results Plus’ is the combined teaching of Knowledge and Skills, Christian Values and 21st Century Capabilities.
- As such, learning power needs to be woven into an existing and engaging curriculum. You can’t ‘teach’ BLP without something solid and purposeful to base it on.
- The death of Little Miss or Mister Perfect.
- No common language, but a repertoire of similar words.
- Smart mistakes vs sloppy/lazy mistakes.
- “Oh, that’s interesting.” Not “Well done for trying.”
I am confident that our work with Guy has commenced an undertow that is pulling our students to deeper learning as part of the learning experience at Christian College.
This is a most exciting time for our students and staff to grow together. I am very grateful that we have been able to have access to such rich experiences with such an incredible and inspiring educator.
As the end of term approaches for students at the end of next week. Our staff will be preparing for the College Retreat. This is a time for reflection, time to work together and share in the encouragement of our Christian faith and to explore our ministry with the students and within our community.
The Retreat provides a range of worship opportunities, workshops, discussion groups, guest speakers and opportunities for personal reflection. It is a significant part of our Professional Development and growth.
I take this opportunity to thank all families for the support that has been provided throughout this term. It is our partnership that brings about the positive impact that we can have on our young people.