Dear Parents & Carers
Welcome to Term 4, another great term of learning ahead. Our Year 12's have begun their HSC exams and are progressing well. Please keep them in your prayers during this time.
On Monday and Tuesday of the first week back, six staff including myself attended the High Reliability Schools Conference in Brisbane. This professional learning focussed on evidence based practices that improve student learning. The sessions focussed on working as a PLC (Professional Learning Community), planning for effective learning and prioritising the curriculum to ensure improved learning outcomes for all. Many of these sessions mirrored our Annual Improvement Plan for 2017.
At the Conference, there were many opportunities to reflect on the progress of our own school. We have many great things to celebrate at O’Connor that are based solidly on research and are improving learning outcomes. Our language and the way we interact with each other is focussed on learning and wellbeing. We are working in professional learning teams across the school to collaborate around learning.
One of the sessions, was based on assessing
How are we going (based on key indicators)?
How do we know (what evidence do we have)?
What are we going to do next?
On many of the key indicators, we were doing very well, there are other areas that we highlighted for improvement. We have been constantly reflecting this year on how we are going and where we need to improve. The School Satisfaction Survey gave us some great data to inform our practice and help hear the voices of staff, students and parents. We are using this data to help shape our focus areas for 2018.
Our Annual Improvement Plan for 2017 provides both a path for improvement as well as a tool for reflection. We have been reflecting through the year and have started the process of developing our Annual Improvement Plan for 2018. As part of this process, I would like to invite parents and carers to a feedback session during this term. The date will be advertised shortly.
On Thursday and Friday, I travelled to St Ursula’s, Kingsgrove with Mr Chapman and a group of Year 11 students to celebrate St Ursula’s Feast Day. St Ursula’s, Kingsgrove celebrated their 60th Anniversary and unveiled a statue of St Angela Merici in their grounds. This visit builds on the connection made when students from St Ursula’s attended our Founders’ Day at the end of Term 2. We feel it is important to maintain and enhance connections with our Founders and develop connections with the Lasallian and Ursuline communities.
St Ursula, legend tells us, was the daughter of a Christian king living in the 4th Century in Britain. She was a woman of great faith, courage and a leader. She was an independent woman who was a risk taker. At the time in which Angela Merici lived the legend of St Ursula was strong and popular. Angela saw Ursula as a model of commitment to Christ and she chose Ursula as patron. The same qualities that both St Ursula and St Angela Merici displayed are ones we seek to grow in our students - courage, leadership, dedication and commitment.
I would like to congratulate our new student leaders for 2017/2018
School Captains - Samantha Archer and Micah Scholes-Robertson
Vice Captains - Brydie Hawthorne and Sam Frazier
Arts Captains - Grace Toakley and Nick Troon
Sports Captains - Katherine Hosking and Conor Dennehy
We are introducing new captains to join this leadership team this year. These captains are Faith and Service Captains. I look forward to announcing these captains as well as our House Captains next week.
What new learning will you undertake this week?