SUSTAINABLE LITERACY AND NUMERACY PRACTICES IN A MULTICULTURAL SECONDARY SCHOOL SETTING


In 2009 we were given Teacher Professional Leave to investigate sustainable literacy and numeracy practices best suited to our school context. Our school supported us in this endeavour by ensuring that we were were timetable off for together for one day a week for the entire year.

We viewed this Teacher Professional Leave as giving Lyndale Secondary College the opportunity to support and develop the initiatives begun as a consequence of the Annual Review. The TPL was the third phase of this process, the first being the Review and the second the introduction of new programs to help realize the goals of the Review.


Focus areas

Our focus on a data driven approach was used in conjunction with pedagogy, team teaching practices and ESL needs not only to improve student engagement but because given the socio-economic backgrounds of our cohort of students and their specific needs targeting literacy and numeracy is the most practical way we could think of using the TPL time with the most wide-ranging positive effects should we succeed.

The project investigated the use of data (NAPLAN and PAT) to inform sustainable literacy and numeracy practices in a multicultural secondary school setting. Best practice in flexible learning spaces, team teaching and ESL were explored. Support material and recommendations were made.

Expectations


We expected to be able to learn the best possible means by which to collect literacy and numeracy data, how to best integrate the data with our NAPLAN and VELS results into a database that allows us to create profiles of classes of students and individual students in order to be able to track them through their time at the College.

We hoped to combine the collection of this data with school visits to inform us of best practice within schools that were doing the same. The data collection has informed the direction of curriculum development and professional development activities that need to be conducted at the College that are specific to the needs of the students.


Our Experience



2010 Focus

1. (a) How does a multicultural government school determine which literacy practices increase student engagement and improve student outcomes that best suits the school’s context and needs?

(b) What are the associated problems experienced in implementing this in similar schools that have increased their student engagement and improved their student outcomes?

(c) What strategies and approaches help facilitate embedding these strategies across a school?