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Navigating to a successful school future

Navigating to a successful school future



Navigating to a successful future...

Navigating to a successful future
Ms Judith Ketchell, Principal, Tagai State College

Presentation at Yamaiyamarna Paitya | Teachers are deadly! 2012 national MATSITI conference, July 9-11, Tarndanya (Adelaide), 9-11 July.
More Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Teachers Initiative.



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  • Kapu moegi bathaynga ; Kapu goegya ; Kapu Kut. Debe Idim wabim; Debe Gerger wabim; Debe Kikem wabim. A very good day to you all my fellow colleagues, brothers and sisters – some of You I know and others I consider as friends I haven ’ t had the privalidge of yarning yet.. I begin my presentation with acknowledging the Kaurna people - the original custodians of the Adelaide Plains. I acknowledge our Elders past and present here today, and especially think of our Elders who have influenced and nurtured us to take on the teaching profession. The Yamaiyamarna Paitya teachers conference is the most significant face to face opportunity that will influence reforms for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander teachers throughout Australia. I bring the warmest of greetings from the Torres Strait in Qld where our daily average temperature is 26% together with the strongest trade sager winds blowing agale 35k but more importantly where we continue to celebrate the biggest sporting triumph over NSW. The State of Origin yarns still runs hot, flags still flying high in our cars and boats but most of all that Qld famous spirit for the last 7 consecutive wins. Our students start back to school today and I can guarantee that they will be recanting the game and probably trying to copy some of the plays of this game. There have been many other celebrations recently: NAIDOC Week – Theme Spirit of the Tent Embassy – 40 years on. July 1 celebrations – Coming of the light – Christianity to the Torres Strait – 141 years. Reconcilation Week Mabo Day celebrations – 20 th Anniversary 3 June 1982 As Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander teachers, these celebrations are often the activities we lead in our schools and I hope your celebrations have been successful.
  • I officially start back to work today after being away from my role since the end of February recovering from Breast cancer. I would like to acknowledge the team who have been steering the ship and I am blessed to be working with such a great team. I love my job and one of the reasons is because of the people I work with – just deadly!
  • Torres Strait Islanders are a spiritual Melanesian race of people. During the 1800 ’ s pearl, trochus shell and bech-de-mer attracted people from all over the world. Through intermarriages the descendants of these people belong to a web of sophisticated extended families who remain in this region to this day. Students of Tagai State College are of mixed ethnic backgrounds; with the majority of the student body that identify as proud Torres Strait Islanders. Our children speaking multiple languages is a strength to a nation; our geographical location gives us strength as resolute leaders who pride ourselves in being innovative problem solvers, our children ’ s socio-economic, cultural or language background will not be acceptable explanation/reasons for low performance or lack of progress for students achievement. Torres Strait Islander history and Culture is a huge part of Qld ’ s and Australia ’ s rich heritage and we as educators have a responsibility to ensure every child we teach has reached their potential.
  • College Teacher Training Days 2011 Tagai launched the 2011 Teacher ’ s forum which triggered more opportunities for teachers to collaborate together. We continue to plan teacher exchanges; visits and other opportunities the rest of this year. Finland requires all teachers to have a master ’ s degree Singapore provides teachers with 100 hours of professional development each year. England provides literacy and numeracy coaches in every primary school . Japan arranges for teachers to collaborate, planning lessons together and observing each other ’ s lessons.
  • In the Torres Strait there is a prapa partnership developing between supply and demand. TSIREC representing the Torres Strait community aspirations working together with Tagai college to meet agreed targets and goals. Our relationship is formalised through an MOU and the College reports twice a year to TSIREC at the Regional Education & Training Roundtables I acknowledge the Chairperson Ned David, past and current TSIREC members who have not only led a high profile advocacy group but redesigned a model of community engagement and school partnerships that is taking us into the realm of autonomous schooling. This partnerships is important to a whole community approach of this education journey. The P&C & TSIREC members are brought together to work with each campus leader to plan a community engagement strategy to address such areas like attendance, achievement, retention etc.
  • Our model for service delivery has changed the way we do business in our college and our student achievements are not one hit wonders, we are making real progress towards sustaining not only the systems and processes but also the improved outcomes. Our Service Guarantee model is based on a teaching & learning service that is holistic and designed to develop the academic, cultural, social, emotional, physical and spiritual dimensions of every child. The Yumi Way explicitly names the essential ingredients for working successfully in our context – they are non- negotiables if you choose to work in our context. We stand firm with our Yumi Education for Life philosphy as many of these principles have not only been passed down from generations but continue to keep our fire burning for aspiring teachers & leaders. Australian classrooms need proud, strong, skilled, knowledgeable, responsible influential Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander teachers. YUMI Education for Life is underpinned by the following 4 principles: 1. It takes a whole village to educate a child – relationship between student, parent and teacher. A story told by an Elder reveals the Torres Strait Islander perspective on growing up a child. The story tells that while the yam vine is young it is easy for it to be wrapped up the pole. Just as it is easiest to straighten the child to grow straight in life. It is the responsibility of a good gardener to keep an eye on the yam vine each day as it grows just as it is the role of the parents, family and community to have a part in making sure the child grows up to be a respectful member of the community. The child and the family are supported by the whole community. To be able to shape the child in this way is to teach the child mina pawa (good ways, good values). Strong belief in Yumi – collective ownership – collectively we own our challenges, out with the blame conversations and in with problem solving together, celebrating our successes together. Creating leadership opportunities with all our staff – Leaders; Teachers; Teacher Aides, Grounds, cleaners. Building capacity of our staff, students and parents – this is about professional development for teachers; parental awareness – Julia Gillard said at a Principals meeting in 2010 - A school ’ s postcode does not determine the standard of education ” – We agree absolutely about same standards, however for any remote school in Australia the biggest challenge is building and sustaining quality leaders & teachers. Our Cultural values are non – negotiatables in our college strategic vision and day to day operations.
  • 2011 our DG, Julie Grantham pulled every Qld Principal together to sends us all a very loud & clear message “ We need you, as principals, to be instructional leaders. ’ Our work since then has been about setting an Instructional climate that supports all of us learning together as professionals. In our college, Instructional leadership meant the following: Being crystal clear about what was being expected to implement this improvement agenda. Understand expectations of using data to inform planning; setting aspirational school /classroom targets & goals; design specific actions were expected of leaders, teachers etc. We introduced Coaching as a methodology to support leaders and teachers with professional development and progress conversations for developing own performance. Much work continues on separating the role as a Coach and the role as a suppervisor/Boss. We introduced Scripts – A suggested plan of very specific actions & resources for leaders; very specific actions for beginning teachers to document what was being expected. We made lots of mistakes especially when we were developing a data analysis tool for teachers to use as their starting point for teaching but this is also the environment we tried to provide – where it is okay to make errors, get some advice and feedback from others. Teacher reflection is a common practice with other teachers to make sure our perceptions match our reality – sometimes there can be a mismatch with making teaching visible to students and learning visible to teachers. We introduced Discussion Lists that brought all teachers together to give feedback to one another on strategies, resources etc. We became more aware of teacher strengths & weaknesses and identify potential teacher leadership for future teacher workshops etc
  • Our College expectations serves one purpose : To provide clarity to our team, our students, our staff and our parents/community about what is expected in our every one of our campuses. Consistency – one song, one dance McKinsey report was used to guide our school improvement journey – examined schools from different countries to determine common priorities of “ excellent schools ” Read the expectations…
  • As a system, a copy of college expectations is evident and copies of the teaching expectations go in every classroom. 1. The 4 pillars outlines the way our teaching and learning is organised – Teachers are expected to use data to help understand every child ’ s starting point for learning; making learning visible to the student. Great progress or no progress in the student ’ s learning belongs to the teacher – out with blame and excuses; in with reflecting on and changing teacher practices to move students learning. There is no blame game with the teacher but a continuous professional learning enviroment that motivates the teacher to collaborate with others, work with coaches and seek support to progress student learning . The emphasis here is time on task, working noise minimised and student listening and watching. Warm ups, I do, We Do. You Do and Plough Backs. Frequent Teacher & sudent evaluation – every 5 weeks using your monitoring and evaluation tools to determine progress/no progress. Targetted teaching is about Differentiation – accelerated learning programs for more able students, personal learning plans and individualised teaching The 5 Givens – being clear that student Learning must remain focused in the classroom –Student learning must be managed – Minimise distractions; time allocations adhered on the timetable; resources prepared. We explicitly script the high expectations we have of student learning – Eg Excellent Bookwork presentation & Handwriting checklist; Classroom Display systems drive expected standards for safe, orderly and exciting learning environments Daily Correction Checklist – all student work marked, dated, ruled etc. Feedback Overview is timely, relevant to specific learning and gives direction for further improvement. The 4 Imperatives to engage students – this is about seeking feedback from our students, making sure that when they leave our school gate every afternoon, they are feeling some success from their school day.
  • A huge culture shift has evolved and will continue as we go about recruiting another group of new teachers for next year. Out with this type of service delivery that oozes negative attitudes, a blame culture and no real sense of accountability.
  • Use quote from Covey We set about communicating to people their potential so clearly that they come to see it themselves. We are creating a culture that released talents and positive contributions from staff. We needed high trust for great teamwork and improved communication.
  • Phase 1 – Building awareness with Heads of Campus; P&Cs; Indigenous Teacher career pathways – planned strtaegy for growing our own. Phase 2 – Build Understanding, Skilling and Practice – through workshops, training sessions. Phase 3 – Specific Coaching – building technical skills; Train the Trainer; Systems Leadership. Build a relationship of trust with your students and parents Ensure a plan for continuous professional learning exists Structured plan to classrooms visits – tools to support you Structured plan to coaching – people to help you practise. Monitoring teacher effectiveness and student improvement. Know how to use data precisely for targetted teaching Know exactly what a good shared/guided/modelled reading lesson looks like. Understand the lesson structure for Explicit Instruction Understand the givens and the quality expected – eg bookwork Practise how to give meaningful feedback.
  • Our group of workers that are often overlooked for their knowledge, skills and expertise. We have approximately 85 teacher aides spread across varying levels of experience and work status. Workshop targetted unpacking the role and responsibility of teacher aides, professional development and career pathway planning especially in the area of Traditional languages; Special Needs and Teacher Education. 38 teacher aides Cert 3 Ed support – they have allocated time at work for study sessions with FNQTAFE outreach service. Due for completion by the end of this year. A lot of RPL work was used to accelerate the course program. Moved more of our casual teacher aides to full time and permanent. Teacher aides also a session with their United Voice Union Rep to better understand their industrial agreements. Half are now union members
  • Recruitment and selection of staff & leaders is critical and having a planned strategy is the only way of ensuring quality.
  • There are 3 areas of excellence – Torres Strait Language & Culture has combined with Torres Strait Arts. This area of excellence has our Language & Culture team busy with embedding Indigenous languages in our Early Years. While the language of instruction is classrooms is English and by spoken by the English speaking teacher; there are time allocations for traditional languages to be used by the language teacher. The Sports excellence program has provided many many sporting opportunities that previously we were not able to participate in. While Rugby League, Volleyball and Basketball have always dominated our student acheivement, much groundwork negotiations happened in 2010, & we have signed the following MOU agreements to provide access to better sporting opportunities and wider participation for more students. AFL Hockey Netball The area of excellence that has expanded throughout every one of our campuses from Prep to Year 12 in the Land & Sea Science program.
  • Horticulture Gardening is a big part of the program
  • We are a reef guardian school which means we conduct camps to teach students about marine conservation and their fishing skills.
  • Marine Safety is already embedded into our curriculum units right up to year 10s where students do Cert 1 work readiness that incorporate Marine safety programs.
  • Our land & sea environment is the other classroom for our students and it vital to have children caring for country. Students collect ghost nets to donate to communities whose artists turn the old nets into works of Art.
  • The Senior Phase of Learning is where we are continuing success. 2009 2010 – student ownership 2011 – student and parent ownership Backward mapping “ what ’ s working ” into the middle years.
  • While this is an award ceremony, this is when we knew we were on the right path to Year 12 retention and achievement. The tide had changed!!! We were only a college for 2 years but we had overcome some major obstacles. The biggest one is Belief – Student belief, staff belief in our students and our parents & community perceptions of the standard of education in our remote location.
  • Our 2011 School Annual Report highlights our major improvements for attendance, retention, achievement, employment, disciplinary absences. 14 areas out of 16 test areas were improved – some more than others – Year 3 ’ s much improved and Year 7 & 9 much improved. The introduction of the Australian curriculum has impacted on every teacher and we await our 2012 NAPLAN results to unpack this impact. Attendance Chart – using data to help parents understand lateness & attendance implications.
  • 3 Elements essential for sustainablity in schools… 1. Collaborative Practices between teachers within and across campuses No of teachers effectively sharing practices on Early & Middle Years DL No of teachers demonstrating leadership on Early Middle Years DL No of teachers providing quality feedback to inform Teacher Training Days No of Teachers who used classroom observation feedback to improve their practice. No Teachers confident with their classrooms open to public – any parents and community No of Teachers identified as coaches for their peers No of Teachers who plan and monitor their own IDP No of teachers who attend PD off site and share with their peers at staff meetings No of campuses that rotate staff meetings in Teacher ’ s classrooms 2. Design models to improve service & support to staff Effectiveness of Curriculum support system – PD Model – Train the Trainer Quantity & quality visits from coaches & HOC into classrooms – Coaching Model YESS models of service & support 3. Systems Leadership – Accountability Frame implemented SRD AAP – Timelines & performance indicators WPR – progress conversations and reviews. Tagai State College Internal School Review - November 2011
  • This is our Year 12 cohort from 2011 ready to celebrate their Formal Evening. With every cohort that exit our college, we track them, monitor them, stay in touch for referrals and other support. Before they exit at the end of the year, they all go through a Destination Interview – and leave the interview with their Destination folder that has all their Uni/Employment plans, resumes, licenses, accommodation plans. 1 student who received a defence force scholarship 4 students had the Army as their destination but only 3 went. 8 students had Uni offers – A staff member contacts every student to see how they are going and if they need any referrals for support. The Uni pathway remain our challenge but I ’ m confident with our MOU Agreement with JCU that we can begin our tertiary aspirations program back in the primary school.
  • This fire energises us when we connect as a family of teachers together. As Indigenous leaders we have taken on this responsibility of making a real difference to the lives of children - well when we sit near a raging bonfire like this one, we reflect on what gives us purpose & strength in our beliefs, willing to do whatever it takes when the flames and glow need more wood fuel. With the Australian curriculum being rolled out across our nation, we all have the most important role to play in closing the gap for our non Indigenous colleagues and building their knowledge, understanding and skills to embed Indigenous perspectives into every Australian school. In everyone ’ s life, at some time, our inner fire goes low/out. It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another person. We should be grateful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit. Together let ’ s keep the fire vibrant, breathtaking and brilliant for our potential young teachers to shine and sparkle the skies with their dreams and aspirations inside their classrooms. While I believe the next chapter for Tagai State College and the Torres Strait Nation will gain much attention but most of all change the history of education achievement especially as we move to autonomous schooling in the Torres Strait. I thank you for tuning in this morning and do encourage you to take some of the simple messages here and discuss with each other. If we as a collective want to make a difference to the education of children - we must unite the voice as one family – we must carry the fire of our ancestors and our elders.

Navigating to a successful school future Navigating to a successful school future Presentation Transcript

  • N a v ig a t in g t o a
  • Tagai State College Executive Associate Principals: Stephanie Savage; Annette O”Rourke ; Steve Foster.Senior HOC Ian Unicomb & Director Yumi Education Service Support Ned David.
  • Q UI C QUICK FACTS K•Crea FACTS •18 communities t e• Ope d in Feb 20 across 48,000km2 ration 0 o 16 p s over 7 rimar 23 sites: o 3 St y • Population 7,250 and-a campuses o 1 Se lo conda ne PrePrep o Sp e r • 85% identify as being cial Ed y / TAFE – Ma l ucatio of an Aboriginal u Os n Uni o Flex t orTorres Strait Island ible So Exe u cutive pport Cent heritage. Office re & BS U • Is the only part of Australia that borders with a neighbouring country •Saibai Island is 3.73 kilometres from the PNG mainland. • Mer is the place in Australia where native title was recognised
  • Q U I CK F A CTS • 1,650 s tudents •96% are enro of a Torre lled in 2011 Aborigina sS l heritage trait Island or •96% spe ak Yumpl • 86% sp atok as fi eak Stand rst langua a second ard Austr ge . , third or alian Eng •Increas fourth lan lish as ing numb guage. KLY/Meri ers of stu am Mir a dents spe s first lan ak guage.
  • QUICK FACTS • 25% for Indig. teachers and classified officers• Over 400 employees • Average retention of teachers is 3.9yrs•33 Classified Officers • 40% teachers > 9 years•181 teachers • The average age of teachers is 39.5 yrs.•191 Support Staff • Qualifications : 5 Masters / 176 Bach & Dip.•54% Indigenous
  • SERVICE GUARANTEE THE YUMI WAY It takes a whole village to educate a child – Relationships Strong belief in Yumi Collective ownership Yumi way of building capacity for our peopleYumi Principles honour our strong cultural values.
  • COLLEGE EXPECTATIONSWe expect every campus to accelerate student performance and systems in line with those of an excellent school. We expect: •Every student to achieve their learning potential •Curriculum delivery to be underpinned by Explicit Instruction pedagogy •A learning culture that promotes proud learners who are respectful, responsible and safe •A significant level of community engagement to progress children’s learning •The cultural Identity of our students to be protected and honoured 9
  • TEACHING EXPECTATIONS The Four Pillars of our college wide pedagogy Teacher accountable learning; Explicit Instruction ; Moving student knowledge from short term to long term memory; Effective relationships between teachers, parents and students The Five Givens in the classroom High expectations; classroom tone, Feedback to students;Bookwork Presentation, Handwriting & correction; classroom displays The Four Imperatives of student engagement Students trust, respect and feel valued by their teacher/s;Students have work at their level ; Students have friends at school and students’ cultural Identity is respected. 10
  • “There is no getting around it. For the entire system to be on the move you need leadership that focuses on theright things and that above all promotes collective capacity.” (Michael Fullan, 2010)
  • Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Teachers 13
  • 2011 Teacher Aide Conference38 Teacher Aides studying Certificate 3 Education support20 Teacher Aides have Certificate qualification
  • • œ œ œ œ œ œ œ• œ œ œ• ’’ œ ’ œ ’ œ ”” ” œ
  • Centre of Excellence Land & Sea Science Torres Strait Language & Culture Torres Strait Art Sport
  • Innovative Practices•Climate change duringhigh tides and stormsurges•Qld Premier’s 2011Sustainability FinalistAward•Powersavvy college toreduce carbon footprint• $57,000 savings•$$ 57,478 savings
  • WINNERS!I 2009 Showcase Award Excellence Senior Phase. WINNERS! 2010 WINNERS!! 2011Year 12 QCE Achievement tripled !! Yr 12 VET rate 100%
  • 2009 College Attendance 87.2% 2010 College Attendance 88.3% 2011 College attendance 91.1%2011 Prep Yr. 1 Yr. 2 Yr. 3 Yr. 4 Yr. 5 Yr. 6 Yr. 7 Yr. 8 Yr. 9 Yr. 10 Yr. 11 Yr. 12N 193 141 192 121 163 174 128 139 78 78 74 65 70% 85.6 87.7 90.5 90.9 91.6 91.7 90.2 92.1 88.7 81.9 79.2 81.8 81.9
  • SCHOOL OPINION SURVEYPARENT SATISFACTION• 75% …with what their child is learning at this school.• 80% …that this is a good school.• 30% unsure/dissatisfied with online access to school & curriculumSTAFF SATISFACTION• 92% … Good working relationship with other staff• 90% ... I am encouraged to take responsibility for my own work• 83% …confident of being able to do what is expected of me• 44% Un/Dis….I have good access to quality professional development.
  • Sustainable Practices McKinsey Report iCollaborative practices between teachers within andacross sectorsSystems Design- Models thatprovide service& supportSystemsLeadership 29
  • 30
  • Facilities • Quality Classrooms & Signage • Mer Erwer Uteb (Mer campus) • Libraries 21st Century • Land & Sea Discovery Centre • Language & Culture Centre Shared Facilities: Trade Training Centre Iama Early Learning Centre Erub Arts Centre PrePrep Centres
  • Why God Made Teachers By Kevin William Huf f When God created teachers, He gave us special friends To help us understand His world And truly comprehend The beauty and the wonder Of everything we see, And become a better person With each discovery. When God created teachers, He gave us special guides To show us ways in which to grow So we can all decide How to live and how to do Whats right instead of wrong, To lead us so that we can lead And learn how to be strong. Why God created teachers, In His wisdom and His grace,Was to help us learn to make our world A better, wiser place.
  • Our School PrayerThis is our schoolLet peace dwell hereLet the rooms be full of contentmentLet love abide hereLove of one anotherLove of mankindLove of life itselfAnd love of GodLet us rememberThat as many hands build a houseSo many hearts make a schoolAmen