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Newman News Term 4 Week 9: From the Vice Principal

09 Dec 2021

As the end of the school year draws to a close it is an appropriate time to sincerely thank all members of our Marist family. To our staff, parents, and students, we are grateful for your efforts, collaboration and perseverance. Together we made 2021 another productive and fruitful year, enabled by the Marist characteristics of the love of work, presence and simplicity, essential ingredients for growth.

Growth occurs in many forms, be it in the human mind, a muscle, the body, learning an instrument, attuning to a new friendship or relationship, or learning new skills and content. Regardless of where the growth happens, the same formula applies: stress+ rest = growth.  Those mathematicians and scientists out there are very familiar with balancing equations. What you do to one side of an equation will be reflected on the other. If there is too much stress and not enough rest, growth will be inhibited. Likewise, if there is too much rest and not enough stress, growth will be inhibited. Rest comes in many forms and is quite individual. Play, laughter and fun are excellent rest providers, as are prayer, sleep, self-reflection, silence, and meditation.

Our hope is that the holiday period provides all students and staff with a great opportunity for down time and rest. In many ways, learning stress is heightened as we conclude the year, but that’s okay – we can now look forward to a longer period of well-deserved rest and relaxation, to balance the equation.

We wish you all a happy, holy, and restful holiday break and we look forward to welcoming you back in 2022, well-rested and ready for another wonderful year of growth.

Term Dates – 2022

Click here to view the term dates for 2022

Reporting

Newman College is committed to an academic reporting process which if fulsome, timely and accurate. Families may have noted that Semester Two reports contain both a Course Grade and a State Grade. In the past, students have received a state grade only, which is reflection of how your child has progressed against the achievement standards of the Western Australian Curriculum and the state cohort. As of Semester Two 2021, Newman College will also communicate a course grade. This grade reflects your child’s achievement in the learning program and assessments of the course delivered.

In many instances, your child will receive the same letter for both their course and state grade. However, there may the times where your child receives two different letter grades for the same subject. For example, a student in Year Ten Extension Mathematics may receive a State ‘A’ grade, but they receive a ‘C’ Course grade. This affirms that the student is demonstrating excellent achievement when compared to the state cohort. However, the student has received a ‘C’ Course grade as a reflection of their achievement within the extended curriculum they have accessed.
Please note that Religious Education, Year Nine Design Thinking and Year Ten Just Start It do not receive state grades.

Australian Curriculum judging standards are used to discern the end of year grade of student reports across the College. It is important to acknowledge the variety of inputs that are taken into consideration when reporting on each learning area. These inputs include, but are not limited to, formative and summative assessment, observations and running records. Learning attributes provide families and students with an insight into how students apply themselves to their learning and the classroom environment.

Families in Years K – 10 will have access to their reports from 4.00pm on Thursday 9 December.

Please ensure you can log into SEQTA to retrieve the reports. Any families leaving Newman College, including our class of 2021 students, are reminded to download all reports from SEQTA as files will be archived at the end of December and will no longer be accessible.

Thank you to all teachers for their preparation, professionalism, and attention to accurate and meaningful reporting as a critical element of our learning cycle.

Allwell Testing 

Allwell Reports for Years 2, 4, 8 and 10 will be available on SEQTA from 4.00pm on Thursday 9 December. Our current Year 6 and new Year 7 2022 Allwell results will be uploaded on SEQTA in 2022.

Christmas Carols 

Unfortunately, due to the forecast of very hot weather, we had to cancel our carols event that had been scheduled for Wednesday 8 December.  This decision was made to ensure the health and safety of students, staff, and family members.

Students did get the opportunity to sing their carols and a virtual concert was created.  This can be viewed on our YouTube channel by clicking here.

We hope you enjoy the presentation.  Merry Christmas!!!!

Marcellin Awards Ceremonies

On Thursday 25 November, students in Years 7 – 11 came together to celebrate their many achievements.

Click here for a full list of Award Winners.

Booklists 

To provide students with consistent, predictable routines at the commencement of each day we will be moving Pastoral Care Group (PCG) to the beginning of the day. PCG class is critically important for relationship building, delivery of important messages and wellbeing programs, and for reiterating whole of school expectations in relation to our Newman College Norms.   This change has occurred after feedback from both students and staff on the effectiveness of the PCG classes in relation to the intent of the program. Period times for 2022 are listed below.

Booklists are available here.

Learning Support Audit

Associate Professor Dianne Chambers, a well-respected author, presenter, and lecturer from the University of Notre Dame, conducted an audit this year of our Learning and Education Support structures, processes and policies. We now have her report, and we look forward to planning the enaction of the recommendations as a priority in the near future. The executive summary can be found below. If you are interested in hearing more about the report findings, please contact me directly via lucie.McCrory@cewa.edu.au .

Executive Summary 

The review of learning and education support at Newman College was undertaken as part of a regular review of processes and provisions offered at the school to support students with additional needs and disabilities. The remit for the researcher was to gather data by way of interviews with key stakeholders (leadership, teachers), examination of documents (policy, job descriptions and planning formats) and through focus group interviews (parents and students). These data were collected over the period of one month and provided an overview of the learning and education support services offered at Newman College and the perception of these services by key stakeholders.

The results from analysing the data are presented in aggregated form to ensure any one individual was not identified, although most who provided information were not concerned about their voices being heard (and welcomed this approach). The results indicated that there were many staff at the college who were exemplary in regards to their support of students with additional needs and disabilities, and that these staff should be highly valued by the college and their knowledge shared with all staff.

There were a number of areas identified that could be strengthened including: teacher expectations; planning; behavioural approach; role clarification; funding; communication; and training. Each of these areas are discussed in relation to measures that can be taken to improve processes at the college. There are four main recommendations that the researcher suggests are most critical for the college to consider. These are:

  1. Clarification of roles in the diversity team and employment of additional learning support personnel.
  2. Examination of behavioural expectations and consequences, including development of strategies to address anxiety across the college.
  3. Provide additional training for teachers in providing reasonable adjustments in the classroom.
  4. Communicate any changes/directions in the college clearly to parents.

It is hoped that these recommendations will assist the college in strengthening its use of evidence-based practices to support students with disabilities across all campuses and to ensure consistency in approaches taken.

Staff Farewells 

The following members of the College community will be leaving us to explore new pathways.  The College would like to thank them for their dedication, service and support they afforded to both students and staff.  Our wish for you is that your Marist spirituality continues to give you strength and that you take away fond memories of your time here at Newman College.

Paul Cranley, Torren Diletti, Debra Needham, Joe Ricciardone, Steven Tsocas, Edward York, Catherine Bagg, Suzanne Hunter, Teresa Fisher, Sofia Ward, Maree Grayden, Dixie Johnstone, Shannon Young.

Code of Conduct 

The Keeping Safe Child Protection curriculum is a program that spans from 3 years up to Year 12.  Our College delivers this curriculum during classroom teaching, and through the Wellbeing Programs and Health curriculum.

As a Catholic community we are committed to educating the whole person. In order to do this, we need to ensure a safe, supportive and engaging environment. The basis for this environment is that all in the community model what healthy, respectful relationships look like. The Code of Conduct is the definitive guide to the behaviours we want to model to, and expect from, our children and young people. We want to create a culture that assists our children and young people on their learning journey. We can only achieve such a culture in partnership with all who participate in our community. The Keeping Safe Child Protection curriculum is a program that spans from 3 years up to Year 12.  Our College delivers this curriculum during classroom teaching, and through the Wellbeing Programs and Health curriculum.

A reminder to all families that the Code of Conduct can be accessed via the College website. The Code is mandated by Catholic Education Western Australia and the application of the code extends to all staff, students, parents, guardians, caregivers and volunteers.

Any perceived breaches of the Code can be discussed with a member of the Senior Leadership Team. As always, if students ever need support, they are encouraged to contact their Leader of Wellbeing, a College psychologist, Counsellor or classroom teacher.

The Code seeks to value the dignity of every person, foster positive relationships, ensure confidentiality and accountability and supports professional boundaries. Events held during school hours, and those College associated events outside of school hours are also supported by the Code of Conduct. Additionally, postings on social media platforms that identify the College or College events are bound by the Code of Conduct. We thank you in advance for your understanding and look forward to a positive partnership that supports our students, your children.