The ‘ETA’ Executive Team Address
TERM 4 WEEK 7 REFLECTIONS
Some thoughts on small schools
The decision on which secondary school to enrol your child is an important one. And what might be the right fit school for one child might not necessarily be the right fit for another. Parents must carefully consider what is in the best interests of their children, weighing up all the options and then making an informed decision.
Often parents battle against the opinion of the child and the heavy influence that peer relationships play in the child’s decision-making process. Hopefully, it is the parent making the final decision and hopefully this decision is based around the educational opportunities available and the pastoral support provided by a school in support of the student learning goals and aspirations over time.
We are expecting some strong growth at EACS over the next few years, but even at full capacity of about 240 students we are always going to retain that small school feel. Being a small school is often one of the reasons cited by parents when they make EACS the school of choice for their child.
So, what are some of the benefits of being a small school such as EACS?
- Students are more engaged in their studies and are more likely to participate in extracurricular activities.
- Students are more likely to be known by all of the adults and children in the school and are much less likely to "fall through the cracks".
- A small school allows all of the teachers to sit around a single table and to create a culture of shared decision-making.
- At their best, small schools are seen as enhancing strong personal bonds, home and community involvement, improved instructional quality and accountability, and improved teacher working conditions and job satisfaction.
- Recent studies suggest students in small schools perform better academically, have higher attendance rates, feel safer, experience fewer behavioral problems and participate more frequently in extracurricular activities.
- Small schools engage a broader cross-section of students, helping reduce social and racial isolation.
- Small schools have higher levels of parental involvement, and parental involvement is a critical factor in student success.
- More students, parents, teachers, and community volunteers report greater satisfaction because they feet more connected to one another.
- A small school offers an environment in which students may be more visible. Student-teacher relationships improve, allowing teachers to more easily identify individual talents and unique needs of each student, which offers a more personalised educational experience.
- Teachers are able to interact more with their faculty administrators. A small school staff size allows more opportunity for teachers to know each other well, more easily share information about their students, collaborate to solve problems, and generally support one another.
An article in School News discusses Teacher-student relationships being crucial to student engagement. The point is made about the power of positive relationships – the more positive teacher-student relationships are in students’ academic and pastoral lives, the better. And in reflecting back to the power of small schools, teachers themselves can look for ways to create positive classroom climates, such as getting to know their students, providing emotional support when needed, and where possible adjusting their teaching to meet the individual needs of students.
Last Friday 15th November 36 students from 10 primary schools attended our Transition Day. After a short welcome from Mrs Marquis the day commenced with our Student Councillors conducting some fun icebreaker activities to help new students get to know one another. They then facilitated a Treasure Hunt, the aim of which was to help new students familiarise themselves with the school, its facilities and surrounds.
For the main part of the day students were split into 4 groups, rotating through a range of activities, which included:
- Introduction to Woodwind instruments with Mrs Saunders - students had the opportunity to play a variety of wind instruments and learn the rules of conducting.
- Clay Workshop with Mrs Leonard -students created their very own clay Christmas ornament which will be delivered to them at school in the coming weeks.
- Minecraft Workshop with Mr Abbott - students were given a set of rules to create the most elaborate water slide using Minecraft Education.
- Introduction to Chemistry with Ms Bottrell - students used their fingerprints to create their Science ID passes then, with the help of year 11 Chemistry students, completed a series of titrations.
- Christmas cooking with Mrs Shipp and Miss Welsh - students were given an induction into using the Food Science and Technology rooms before making their own batch of Christmas coconut chocolate balls to take home with them.
- Game skills with Mr Castelli - students played a variety of small group games, testing their agility, endurance and teamwork.
The incoming students made the most of every opportunity to develop new friendships, learn some new skills, and generally acquaint themselves with their new school. The feedback was amazingly positive, and the children are to be congratulated for their manners and participation throughout the day. It is an exciting time at EACS
with strong growth anticipated over the next few years.
St George’s Camp – Perth
The following year 9 students are away this week, in Perth, staying at St Georges College UWA: Danielle Baker, Kacie Goodman, Madison Maitland, Pearl Mitchell, Mikaela Muir, Ella Purchase and Codee Walter. The girls will be enriched through their participation in a number of activities, namely tours and visits to the following attractions: University of Western Australia, Maritime Museum, Fremantle Prison, WACA, Supreme Court of WA, Perth Zoo, Perth Mint, Scietech, Underwater Aquarium, Kings Park.
Indigenous Cultural Incursion
This Tuesday 26 November a great initiative from Esperance Tjaltjraak Native Title Aboriginal Corporation will take place at school. Our year 7&8 students will benefit from a cultural and plants incursion facilitated by indigenous Tjaltjraak staff and Esperance Shire Rangers. Students will rotate through three 15-minute sessions involving microscopes, foliage mat work and a nature walk around the school grounds.
An evening of musicianship will take place on Tuesday 03 December from 1730hrs in DMP. RSVPs necessary for catering purposes. Please inform the office of your intention to attend.
There will be a school busy bee to see out the year on Sunday 08 December from 0900 – 1130hrs. The main focus will be on general domestic and gardening (sweeping paths, weeding, pruning, mowing, litter picking, mulch and gravel spreading, fertilising). Please bring along any tools that you think might be useful on the morning. A good final opportunity for students to chalk up some school service hours.
Year 9 Canberra Camp Parents Meeting 2020
Please be advised that the dates for next year’s Canberra Camp fall within the second week of the July school holidays. The trip dates are the 13-21 July 2020. A parents meeting has been scheduled for next Wednesday 04 December 1730-1830hrs in D4. This will be a good opportunity to find out more information as well as an opportunity for question and answer
Specialist Netball and Tennis Programs 2020
A reminder that expressions of interest are sought from new and existing families who would like their son or daughter to be part of the Specialist Netball and Tennis programs in 2020. Trials may be necessary in the event of numbers exceeding maximum limits. A semester commitment is the minimum expectation once selected onto the program. Please email Mrs Walter for netball (email@example.com) or Mr Clark for tennis (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Dance Devotion Concert
The annual Dance Devotion Concert was held over the weekend with many EACS girls represented. It is amazing to witness what amounts to 10 months of practice and rehearsal culminating in such polished and professional performances. All EACS girls can feel extremely proud of what they achieved both on the night and throughout the year. The matinee and evening performances were wonderful spectacles for all in attendance. Congratulations to the following girls, who are all worthy of a standing ovation: E. Clark, M. deGrussa, E. Fels, A. Frahm, J. Gaebler, E. Goddard, C. Lee-Steere, Kate McCrea, Kirsten McCrea, P. Mitchell, O. Petersen, E. Purchase, K. Smith, A. Stone, T. Wynne.
Special mention to Olivia Petersen for winning the trophy for Acrobatics at the Awards Ceremony.
What's on this week (week 7)
- Monday to Friday Year 9 St George’s Camp – UWA, Perth
- Monday Chapel service
- Tuesday Indigenous Incursion - plants and culture sessions 0900 - 1030hrs
- Wednesday First Aid 'snakebite' assembly 0850hrs in DMP
What's on this week (week 8)
- Tuesday Musical Soiree in DMP 1800-1900hrs
- Tuesday Executive Principal in Esperance
- Wednesday Executive Principal in Esperance
- Thursday Executive Principal in Esperance
- Friday Curtin Medical School pathways workshop 1350-1450hrs
- Sunday Busy Bee 0900-1130hrs
- 09 December Year 12 Graduation evening at the Pier
- 10-11 December Executive Principal in Esperance
- 10 December Night of Celebration and Awards
- 11 December Advanced Standing reward activity and luncheon
- 12 December Inter-house Beach Volleyball (all day)
- 16 December 2019S2 Reports issued
Best wishes for the week ahead.