School structure & learning neighbourhoods 2017
At PVSPS we recognise that all children are individuals who bring a range of knowledge, skills and experiences with them. They develop and learn at different rates. They have preferences and strengths. Their learning needs, including academic, social and personal, will change as they grow and learn.
Teachers in primary schools are generalist teachers, qualified to teach all learning areas at all levels. With the leadership team, they collaboratively plan to teach and meet the range of learning needs of the students. Whether teaching a straight or a composite class, teachers continually assess student achievement and teach individuals and groups at their point of learning need (regardless of the year level in which they are enrolled). They identify learning needs through regular assessment to find out what students know and what they need to learn next (aligned to the Victorian Curriculum continuum). Teachers explicitly teach skills and concepts to the whole class, as well as groups, according to their learning needs. Sometimes groups are of mixed ability and sometimes they are of like-ability. Structures for this include teacher-directed groups, collaborative groups, parent helper supported groups and working on self-directed tasks.
There are two Professional Learning Teams at the school – Prep to Year 3 and Year 4 to 6. Within these teams are learning neighbourhoods.
The organisational structure of learning neighbourhoods may be one year level (straight) or two adjacent year levels (composite). One factor that informs the structure is the number of students in any year level, along with locations available. This does not change our developmental approach to learning.
Based on our enrolments and budget for 2017 we have 13 classes in four learning neighbourhoods, three with composite groups and one straight group – 3 x Prep/1, 4 x 2/3, 4 x 4/5 and 2 x 6.
There will be three Prep/1 groups with around 23 students in each group; four Year 2/3 groups with 21 students in each group; four Year 4/5 groups with 25 students in each group and two Year 6 groups with 25 students in each group.