May 18, 2022

Principal’s Update

Michelle Roberts

Dear Families, Students and Community Members,

 

Successful Open Events

On Thursday 5 May we held a most successful Open Night, for prospective students and parents, with over 700 visitors to see the whole school in action. The success of such events is testament to our strong sense of community where staff, students and parent representatives from our College Council all played important roles. The level of support and enthusiasm from all involved was extremely positive and affirming. My sincere thanks to Mr Daniel Williams, Director of Middle School, and Mrs Tracey Bastin, Assistant Principal who were the main organisers, supported by Catherine Boulton in the office and Alex Pelgrim our facilities manager. I would also like to thank all staff for their attendance out of school hours and for organising some terrific displays and highly engaging interactive workshops; to all the students who acted as tour guides or assisted with the interactive workshops, they were so proud to showcase their school; and to the parent representatives from College Council, who were very enthusiastic and proud to speak about Mordialloc College to prospective parents.

 

A special thanks to our student speakers in the formal presentation part of the evening. They all did an outstanding job articulating what it means to them to be a student at Mordialloc College. Congratulations to Emma Schultz and Daniel Loza, speaking in their capacity as School Captains; and Ava McIntosh and Dylan Palmer representing Year 7, and speaking so confidently about their experiences to date. Please see the feedback summary page containing lots of positive comments from prospective parents below:

OPEN NIGHT FEEDBACK 2022.pdf

 

Congratulations to Ulricka and her son Brayden Pepper who won the $100 Westfield gift voucher, one of many who went into the draw for completing the learning journey passport on the night.

 

Building Program Update 

In the recent state budget, Mordialloc College has been allocated $716,627.00 in minor capital works funding for the replacement of our first-floor balcony in our main two storey building at the front of the school. This will also include a new wall and windows on the ground floor underneath the balcony. We will be working closely alongside the Victorian Schools Building Authority (VSBA) for the duration of this project. We will know more about the anticipated timeline and commencement date for this project later in the year.

 

Careers Week

Thanks to our Pathways and Careers team, Emma White and Jane Jamieson, for organising Careers Week this week. There have been short quizzes with prizes for period one classes each day.  Aspirations Day was held on Wednesday for all our Year 10 students. They had the opportunity to listen to a variety of guest speakers from various occupations during periods 1 and 2. Our Year 12 students had the opportunity to have lunch with a Uni student studying in a field they are interested in.

 

Progress Reports

Progress Check 2 for this semester was released to parents and students on Monday of this week on compass. These progress checks focus on our students’ learning behaviours which link to our school values, their attendance, and their academic progress.  Please download and discuss with your child/ren. In addition, continuously during the semester, students will receive specific written feedback from their teachers on benchmark tasks and SACs in which they will be given some class time to reflect and identify areas for improvement.  Please ask your child/ren about the feedback they have received this term on their benchmark tasks and SACs.

 

Tutoring for our Year 12 students

Each year we utilise the services of some of our former top Year 12 students to provide tutoring support to our current Year 12 students afterschool onsite. Thanks to our Acting Director of Senior School, Mr Randell, for organising the following students from last year who are returning to offer tutoring in the following subjects. We highly recommend that our students take up these valuable opportunities for some extra support during the year. These sessions started last week.

 

Sam Bloxham – Chemistry, Physics, Maths Methods, Biology

 

Meike Berg – English, Further Maths

 

Lorenzo Mortimer – Legal Studies, English, Food Technology

 

George Newton – Psychology, Further Maths

 

Kiss and Go 

To ease congestion at peak, drop off and pick up times, the City of Kingston Traffic Management team have put up signage for a “Kiss and Go” section at the front of the school in Attenborough Road. This area has taken over the previously signed 15 min car parks for peak times and now cars are only allowed to pull in for a couple of minutes. Please follow this new signage and the new time limits that apply if you normally drop off and/or pick up your child/ren from here. In addition, there is the parking map that I included in the newsletter last week, of alternative places to park in our surrounding areas for drop off/pick up of your child/ren.

 

Ride Safely to and from School

It is fantastic to see our new bike enclosure so full of bikes. We are looking at how we can expand this to house more bikes in the future. A reminder to all students who ride their bicycles to school, it is mandatory that helmets are worn for your own safety. Cyclists are required to obey the same road rules as car drivers plus some bicycle specific rules e.g., wearing a securely fitted and fastened helmet whether you are riding on the roads, bike paths or shared footpaths. As such, you can be fined for not complying and most importantly we value your safety and do not want to see any of our students end up with a major head injury.

 

NAPLAN: National Assessment Program Literacy and Numeracy

During last week and this week, all students in Year 7 and 9 are sitting the national tests for the first time online. Therefore, students have been in classrooms rather than all in the one big space as a year level like the gym and the testing period is being spread out over several days across both year levels with online tests in Reading, Writing, Conventions of Language and Numeracy. Online NAPLAN automatically adapts to a student’s test performance and asks questions that match their achievement level. All students start on the same level but depending on whether a question is answered correctly or incorrectly, the next set of questions may be easier or more difficult. We have encouraged all students to treat these tests seriously and strive to achieve their Personal Best.

The results once available will be used to:

  • help teachers identify students who require greater challenges or additional support
  • help the college identify strengths and, if any, gaps in teaching programs and to set goals in Literacy and Numeracy
  • provide additional feedback to students and parents about individual achievements and progress

 

All parents of students in Year 7 & 9 will receive a NAPLAN report on their child’s progress later this year. The report is only one aspect of the school’s assessment and reporting process and does not replace the more extensive and informed judgements made about your child by teachers. Thanks to Marina Walsh for organising and running the days of testing supported by our ICT team (and the practice test days in the lead up to ensure the college could meet all technical requirements of the online tests and for students to be familiarised with the new process), Director of Literacy Improvement, Jamie Towsey and Director of Numeracy Improvement, Julie Chambers. Next year these national tests will move to being conducted in March, so the results will be available much earlier.

 

The Department is recognising students in Year 9 who achieve outstanding results or who significantly improve their results from Year 7, with a NAPLAN Certificate of Achievement.

Category one: the achievement of excellence through getting a result in the top band for Reading or Numeracy, or both.

 

Category two: the achievement of outstanding learning growth through improving by two or more bands between the NAPLAN Year 7 and Year 9 tests for Reading or Numeracy, or both.

 

Impact of COVID

To date this term, unfortunately we have been significantly impacted by COVID, with a high student absence rate in Middle School in particular, and in having several teachers absent with COVID. This has resulted in the school needing to utilise Casual Relief Teachers to cover classes at a more frequent rate than usual. It is really important that we all continue to test regularly with our allocation of RATs and if an identified close contact, even though students can still attend school they must conduct a RAT each morning before coming to school and wear a mask while at school. Please continue to report to the school if your child does have COVID and/or is an identified close contact.

 

Spotless Cleaners Recruiting

If you or anyone you know would like some part-time work, Spotless, the cleaning company contracted by the Department to clean our school, is currently recruiting. Please contact my Assistant Principal, Andrew Moffat if interested.

 

Winter Uniform and Jewellery

I would like remind students of their responsibility in relation to uniform. The College expectation is that all students will be in the correct winter uniform, and that this uniform is worn correctly (shirts tucked in, ties done up properly) just as it would be expected in any workplace. This also means no Hoodies worn under or over your jumper. Our uniform is a very important part of the image we project of our college community and therefore I expect all students to wear their uniform correctly and with pride to, from and at school. I would ask parents to reinforce these expectations at home.

 

A reminder of the rules outlined in the college uniform policy regarding jewellery. Jewellery is not to be worn apart from a wristwatch and a plain stud or sleeper for students with pierced ears. Piercing of other body parts must not be visible.

 

Jobs of the Future

What does the future hold for young people yet to enter the workforce, in a world of work that is fast changing and uncertain? The 100 jobs of the future project report carried out by researchers at Deakin and Swinburne Universities can be found by clicking this link: https://100jobsofthefuture.com/report/

 

For students, the message is clear: be aware of your strengths, follow your interests, gain an expert qualification but mix this with a variety of skills and interests; develop your data and technology skills, develop your capacity for creativity and being organised. The ability to communicate, work effectively in teams and collaborate with other people, along with the need for flexibility and adaptability in the face of change will also be important.

 

Ms. Michelle Roberts

Principal