During 2007, the staff and leadership team from St Augustine’s College developed a learning approach that focused on supporting the provision of personalised learning.
The overall aim of the program was to support a personalised learning approach for students from Prep through to Year 12 and build stronger links between staff students and parents.
Following a visit by a number of staff to Canada, the school agreed to implement a Teacher Advisor approach to the development of personalised learning within their school community. Since 2007, the program has been “rolled out” to now include all students from Prep through to Year 12.
The Teacher Advisor approach involves a teacher, or a school based person, linking with a group of students supporting and reviewing student learning, planning for their future learning and communicating regularly with parents and other school staff. They are the key contact for students, parents and school staff for each of the students they support.
Within the primary school section of the school, the Teacher Advisor is the students’ classroom teacher, while in the secondary sector the Teacher Advisor has a vertical group of approximately 12 students from Year 7 through to Year 12.
The school has developed a computer based system which contains all the information on each student including their learning goals and progress; staff comments; a list of assessment tasks and results; and discussions held during the interview. At each interview, with the student, which each last for approximately 30 minutes, this information is viewed and discussed. At the conclusion of each interview the Teacher Associate and student set new learning goals.
In addition to the regular meetings the Teacher Advisor has with their students, they provide regular communication to parents on the students progress – a minimum of once per term in the primary section and a minimum of six interviews over the year in the secondary section.
The feedback from staff, students and parents has indicated their commitment to the personalised learning approach and all agree that it provides significant benefits for student learning.