It has been another busy week, classrooms are humming with activity and learning.
It is timely to reflect on what extraordinary work is done here by all our staff and students. We are dedicated to continually improving the wellbeing and educational outcomes for our students. Those of you who have met with your child’s teacher earlier this term will no doubt have realised just how well our teachers know their students.
Although we live in a remote area, here at St Joseph’s we aim to provide the best quality education for your children, so it gives me great pleasure to report that overall, our students are achieving at a very high level, with some of our classes achieving the highest results in reading for our Diocese.
This excellent result is due to good quality targeted teaching, the early identification of areas of strength and areas for focussed teaching. Each term every student in the school participates in both reading and Math diagnostic assessments that identify any gaps in learning. This assessment also enables us to track progress and monitor academic growth.
At the recent Parent Teacher Consultation meetings, classroom teachers will have indicated any areas for growth that they are working on with your child but this should not be confused with the A-E marks in Report Card, which report on each students‘ skill level as set by the Australian Curriculum.
Report cards include judgements and comments on student learning, effort and behaviour for the semester. The final A-E mark that you see in the report card is the result of an assessment process that takes place in each classroom that is facilitated by the class teacher over the course of the semester.
One key principle is that assessment is ongoing. No longer does a student’s final result rely on a test at the end of the unit or term. Students are now frequently assessed within lessons to help teachers understand where students are at in their learning and to inform what teaching they need moving forward. All of this assessment and observation then contribute to the final mark that you see on the report card.
As we head toward the end of Semester our students are currently working away at learning content and will continue to participate in small summative assessments throughout the next few weeks. Assessment takes on a variety of structures and report card grades are never reliant on individual test, but rather a collection of items completed over a five month period.
Report cards are scheduled to be released online and available through the parent portal in the second last week of school. This year we are also providing parents with the added option to receive a printed reported card also. A parent slip will be sent in the next few weeks so that you can indicate if you would like to receive a printed copy.
Parent Teacher Consultations will then be held in the last week of term 2 and first week of term 4. They are a very important way of providing feedback to parents and carers and developing good working relationships between teachers and parents and carers.
It is important that schools and parents work together so that our children can achieve, thrive and learn. So that you have a clear understanding of what your child is learning, how they are assessed and what they are being taught. To ensures both parents and teachers are on the same page when having conversations about their children’s learning, we are holding a parent information session this term. This session be held on the Thursday of Week 8 this term. Invitations will be sent out early next week via parent slips.
Although we schedule Parent Teacher Consultations at the beginning and end of each term, please do not hesitate to contact your child’s teacher and any stage of the term if you have any queries or concerns about your child’s progress.
Checking in with Students about Their Learning
Knowing learners and how they learn often involves asking powerful questions and seeing the classroom through the child’s eyes.
There is also a list of questions that parents can ask their children about learning:
- What did you learn today?
- How are you doing?
- What did you do if you didn’t understand?
- How can you improve on your learning?
- What are you most proud of?
I’d encourage you to have a go at asking these questions with your child/ren – their responses may surprise you!