On 18th October last year the Assistant Principal’s from St Agnes Primary School Matraville, St Aidan’s Primary School Maroubra Junction, St Andrew’s Primary School Malabar, St Bernard’s Primary School Botany, St Michael’s Primary School Daceyville, St Mary’s St Joseph’s Primary School Maroubra Beach, Our Lady of Mount Carmel Primary School Waterloo and Our Lady of The Annunciation Pagewood came together at Champagnat Catholic College to start a conversation about building on the relationship that existed between the schools.
Over a number of meetings it was decided that a STEM project partly delivered in the primary schools and Champagnat College would allow all the students of the primary schools the opportunity to use the facilities of the high school that are not available in a primary school environment, it would allow the students who attend Champagnat College in Year 7 the opportunity to get to know some of the staff at the school and the layout of the school before they commenced, this would provide a smoother, less stressful transition into high school, it allows Champagnat College staff with opportunity to work with the primary school staff and continue the work of the primary schools as they take responsibility for the boys education for the final six years.
In 2019 planning of the program continued with the assistance of staff from the Eastern Region Office of Sydney Catholic Schools and also the Sydney Catholic Schools STEM team. Through their assistance and the input from the Assistant Principal’s it was decided that in 2020 all students in Year 4, regardless of whether they will attend Champagnat College or not for high school will have the opportunity to visit the school to complete part of the Science program being delivered in their school. The group also received a Collaborative Cultures Grant from Sydney Catholic Schools to be used to support the development of the program.
In Term 3 this year a number of the staff from the primary schools visited Champagnat College for two days. The first was on 6th August through an invitation extended to primary schools and to the Sydney Catholic Schools staff assisting with the STEM project to attend a Visible Learning Professional Development Day which Champagnat College had organised for a number of their staff. This was a great learning opportunity for all those who attended and provided many great ideas for the programs to be developed in the coming weeks.
The second day was 19th August where the Assistant Principal’s, the staff involved in working on the Science programs, along with the SCS’s staff started the process of identifying the real world problem to guide the STEM project. Following this with the input of staff from Champagnat College, the staff set about writing the programs and activities that will be delivered in part in the primary schools and the high school in 2020.
This project provides many exciting opportunities for the staff and students of the nine schools both next year and in the years to come. Further updates will be provided as the planning continues and as the program is implemented Term 1 next year.
Paul MacGee Assistant Princpal