It’s an exciting time to be at St John’s Grammar. Our students are Learning to Soar: it is our School motto and encapsulates both our School-wide SOARING Pedagogy and our students’ proven ability to excel at the highest levels. 2018 is the year of Soaring Higher and I’m pleased to outline a number of initiatives being implemented to optimise students’ learning experience in the Secondary School.
Firstly, we have a new timetable. It works on a weekly rotation and features more consistent lesson times. Many programs have one two-hour double lesson and two single lessons per week. While our previous model had strengths, the 2018 timetable will provide time for deep learning and also important stability so our students can focus more on the important aspects of their academics and school life.
We have a goal this year to showcase more of the learning taking place in St John’s classrooms. We know our students are wonderfully talented and we recognise that having an audience in mind can inspire students and enrich their learning. Across our academic faculties we will be finding more ways to exhibit students’ accomplishments and our new gallery in the White Chapel will play an important role in this.
Advancing our Canvas LMS implementation is also a focus. All homework in 2018 will be recorded via the Calendar or Assignments function, which means it will be visible in students’ To Do Lists. Teachers will enter information and grades for marked assessments, providing meaningful feedback comments for at least three assessments per semester. Assessment is conducted for learning, not simply as an end-result indicator, and the ongoing feedback students receive via Canvas will help to highlight their strengths and identify areas for further development.
One of the first actions I undertook in this new role was to look at our 2017 Stage 2 results and identify trends. I discovered that our 2017 cohort achieved more A band results than any other leading back to 2013. At St John’s Grammar we are helping excellent students to excel even more. That’s exciting. It’s like helping Roger Federer to improve his serve.
Leader of Learning and Curriculum