One of the strengths of Gippsland Grammar is the commitment to professional growth and development for our staff. We know that our teachers are our most valuable resource in achieving our desired student outcomes. This week there has been great evidence of this belief and practice. My regular Monday visit to Sale for the Executive meeting provides an opportunity to discuss and implement our strategic plan across the school. Staff development and goal setting has been a current focus. Drawing from our overarching Academic-Care school goals, campus goals are developed, along with team goals and then more personalised individual teacher goals are set. Through this process, teachers are supported with a time element, professional expertise and opportunities for collaborative discussion. It is imperative that we all continue to learn and grow in our teaching practice.
Both staff meetings this week have been most productive in this respect. Fiona Carr and I travelled to Sale on Wednesday to work with St Anne’s staff to further plan for the implementation of the new Learning Management System; a digital platform to enhance planning, student learning and parent engagement. This process is a major component for all staff in regards to their Professional Learning Project.
Yesterday our teachers were once again fortunate to work with Sophie Murphy and Luke Mandouit continuing our learnings with SOLO taxonomy and its impact on creating purposeful teaching and learning tasks that promote moving from surface to deep thinking. What I have gratefully observed as a result of these meetings is the collegiality between teachers who are respectfully working together and building on each other’s expertise.
Our swimmers once again delivered a fine performance, enabling many swimmers to advance from the Division Swimming to the Regional competition, which will be held in Sale on Thursday 15 March. Gus Russell and Grace Ng were amongst the Gippsland Grammar SEISA swim team competing at Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre on Thursday. Gus swam three races, winning each. Grace swam in five races, placing in four of the five. Gippsland Grammar placed second overall, with many of the age group champions coming from our team. An excellent result.
Kurrajong presented a most informative and interesting Fellowship today centred on the brain and FIE - Feuerstein Instrumental Enrichment program. We listened to the importance of keeping our brains active through cognitive exercises and were reminded to keep active both physically and mentally for good health. Hudson told us, “Faster than the fastest computer, your amazing brain controls every move you make. Your brain tells your muscles when and how to move. It lets you feel emotions, laugh and cry. It allows you to learn new things and get out of the way of danger. Your brain keeps working even when you are asleep. It sends the signals that make your heart beat, your lungs draw in breath and your eyelids blink”. Thank you to the students of Kurrajong and Ms Hunter for presenting an informative Fellowship and to the Bairnsdale Singers for their appropriately themed song, ‘I’ve been working on my neurons’.
We completed our week looking after our community and supporting Clean Up Australia Day. As a campus we had designated areas to clean up and I commend all of our students for the way in which they participated in this activity. Having pride in our school and our surrounding community was evident as we united in the task at hand. A very big thank you to all. Particular thanks to Ms Crowe and the Green Team of 2018 for initiating this event. As a result of last year’s sunflower seeds distribution by the 2017 Green Team, we were delighted with the many sunflowers on show today. Prizes were awarded and all were acknowledged for their efforts.
Thank you all for a great week.