- 10 August 2017
Dear Parents and Caregivers,
Welcome to Week 5 – how do we slow down the term? The Prep students celebrated their first 100 days at school recently [and still have twelve and-a-half years to go] and our Year 6 students only have 15 weeks of primary schooling left before they begin to prepare for high school. This week’s devotion has a very strong focus on our new whole school value of Service. There is a saying that you can serve without loving, but you cannot love without serving – how true are these words! A major focus for us over the coming month will be to impress on the students that serving others doesn’t have to come with public recognition and rewards.
Congratulations to our Senior School Athletics Team on their outstanding participation at last week’s District Championships. St Paul’s came away as the winners of the C-Division [small schools] Competition for the 4th consecutive year. Well done and good luck to Hayley S, Oyin O, Memory P and Daniel N who have been selected for the District Team to go to the Sunshine Coast Regional Championships at the end of August. Thank you to our PE teacher, Mr Lawrance, for being at the forefront of what has been a hugely successful athletics season and program at St Paul’s.
Flexible Learning at St Paul’s
As we continue to research and observe the effect of classroom environments on the children and our teachers at St Paul’s, I often wonder how different school would have been for our generation if the environments [learning spaces and furnishings] and programs catered for individual learning strengths and needs rather than a “one-size fits all” approach. As we grow the students’ soft skills of self-motivation, time management, communication, independence, creativity, resilience [stamina] and collaboration, we have begun to collect our own evidence-based data on the exciting impact which flexible learning is having on student outcomes, participation and attitudes towards school.
Data taken from our 2016 Year 4 students, who were the first group to move into the purest form of flexible learning, show that they had the highest attendance rate [92%] of all the year levels last year. Our Reading assessment data for these Year 4 students also indicated that every Year 4 student made a minimum of 12 months progress in their reading age. Our 2017 Semester 1 attendance data has both our Year 4 [94%] and Year 5 [94%] students at the top end of school attendance to date. Next week I will be sharing with you our current Reading assessment and attitudinal data for both the Year 4 and 5 students.
I have included for you, as an attachment this week, a great article titled ‘Not in front of the children!’ which focuses on the things we say in front of our children and the wide-ranging effects it has on their attitude, learning, confidence and behaviour. *see attachment I would like to wish our Year 3 students safe travels and great memory making as they prepare for their first big school camp, at Luther Heights in Coolum, to take place at the end of this week.
Well done to the following students who received their Student of the Week Award: You are all wonderful role models to those around you! Wishing everyone a great week and restful long weekend next Monday.
Yours in Christ,
Anton Prinsloo Principal