Chris Needle

From the Assistant Principal

To create a professional learning community - focus on learning, work collaboratively, and hold yourself accountable for results
Du Four   |   What is a "Professional Learning Community"?

Families are the fabric of education support. Parent and carer input is an essential part of the inextricable link between learning and wellbeing, whilst reflecting the core values of the school. The Information Evenings held throughout the past week have allowed a platform for a greater understanding of teaching and learning in the College, an appreciation of student learning beyond the classroom, as well as the importance of teachers and parents as co-educators for student outcomes. The foundations of a learning community are based on knowledge, the sharing of information, engaging in empowering conversations and shared responsibilities for all facets of learning (Catholic Education Melbourne, 2013; Lazar & Slostad, 1999).

These shared responsibilities for learning allow for authentic opportunities to capture teachable moments everywhere. The strategies shared this week connected to feedback literacy, goal-setting and study habits will allow for deep learning-centred discussion to occur. Likewise, the support of socio-emotional learning enhances the holistic approach to education that the school takes. The collaboration and mutual support for our students within the learning community collectively nurtures a positive attitude to lifelong learning, inclusion, and an openness in dialogue between staff, students and parents alike. Empirical evidence informs us that a strong learning community sees students attaining stronger academic results and exhibiting positive behaviours, greater levels of self-esteem and motivation (Du Four, 2004; Voulales & Sharpe, 2004).

Academic attainment, socio-emotional wellbeing and high engagement are traits of a St Aloysius College education. As the year progresses there are multiple points of contact for open and honest dialogue ranging from the feedback available on SEQTA Engage, Learning Conferences, an extensive subject selection process in the Middle and Senior years of the school and, importantly, our availability to discuss any matters of learning and wellbeing for positive outcomes and the upholding of the core values of the school.

Chris Needle
Assistant Principal, Curriculum Design & Innovation