In 2019, St Paul’s Primary School will celebrate its 90th Anniversary since its establishment in 1929 by the Sisters of Our Lady of the Missions. Today it is a vibrant, inner-city, single-stream, co-educational school comprising of approximately 235 students from Pre Kindergarten to Year 6, catering for the families of St Paul’s Parish and surrounding areas.
The School provides a holistic education, embracing the spiritual, intellectual, physical, social and emotional development of students, where both relationships and learning are valued. Central to the School’s Vision is a commitment to Christ-centred education, inspired by the spirit of our founding Order, the Sisters of Our Lady of the Missions, and the Gospel teachings of St Paul.
As part of the School’s Mission, the children are challenged to strive for excellence and grow in faith, love and hope, with respect for one another. Pastoral care is given a high priority and students are encouraged to recognise their uniqueness and self-worth. Behaviour management is positive, valuing the dignity of each individual and the development of self-discipline. To ensure maximum leadership opportunities, four ministries of Christian Leadership - Physical Education & Sustainability, Events & Music and Library & Digital Technologies, are rotated among the Year 6 students throughout the year.
St Paul’s Primary School fosters a strong relationship with St Paul’s Parish. The spirit of community in the School is enriched by the active involvement of parents and the generous assistance of the Parents and Friends (P&F) Association.
The education offered by St Paul’s Primary School encourages students to aspire to our Motto, “From Darkness to Light”. Students are supported to seek the truth and grow in knowledge from darkness into the light of Christ.
WHOLE SCHOOL CURRICULUM PLAN
At St Paul’s we pride ourselves on having a well-rounded curriculum, providing students with a wide variety of activities and competitions in many learning areas. A range of programs are implemented to cater for the individual needs of the students, who are not only supported in their learning through a whole school intervention program, but are also challenged by a comprehensive extension program and classroom extension activities.
The Whole School Intervention Program, coordinated by the Learning Support Coordinator, identifies and addresses the needs of children experiencing learning difficulties. Programs such as Extending Mathematical Understanding (EMU), Reading Recovery, MiniLit/MultiLit and inclass small group support sessions are employed to assist children experiencing difficulties in Literacy and Numeracy.
The Extension Program is offered to selected students from Years 4-6, providing comprehensive academic challenges, including:
Each year we strive to raise our standards of achievement. Teachers are supported to investigate new ideas and make changes in their teaching practice to benefit the students. The teachers engage in collaborative conversations at Professional Learning Community (PLC) meetings, participate in Ongoing Professional Learning (OPL), engage in peer coaching, visit other schools and form community partnerships. We regularly review our annual Whole School Curriculum Plan, analyse our student performance data and decide on the areas that most need focus in our school.
At the end of 2018, after analysing the NAPLAN and standardised testing data, we once again reviewed and updated our Whole School Curriculum Plan and decided that in 2019 the whole school would have a major Literacy focus on Spelling and a Numeracy focus on our newly created Numeracy Data Wall, with an initial emphasis on Place Value.
In 2019, as part of our commitment to personalising the data, or ‘putting faces on the data’, St Paul’s staff will be participating in a Literacy initiative entitled ‘The Literacy Collective’, in collaboration with a selection of other Catholic Education WA (CEWA) schools. Based on worldwide research and facilitated by a leading Canadian educator, Lyn Sharratt, this project will assist us to develop a common language for sharing all students’ progress and use ongoing assessment data to inform instruction and cater for every student. The many benefits of personalising data include increased student engagement and a positive impact on school culture.
A strong emphasis is placed on the development of independent learning skills and the integration of digital technologies across the curriculum to enhance student learning. A BYO 1:1 digital device program is in place from Years 4 to 6, with Year 6 continuing to use their Macbooks; while Year 4 and Year 5 use iPads. Years 1 to 3 also operate a 1:1digital device program, using school-provided iPads; and Pre Primary and Kindy have access to a bank of iPads. The students have been reaping the benefits that a range of apps can bring to teaching and learning, allowing for increased creative learning opportunities, such as the making of audio-visual projects, interactive posters and slideshows.
With the School’s implementation of Zuludesk a powerful, cost-effective, mobile device management system, teachers and parents have more control over exactly when and what students can access. The introduction of See Saw, a student-driven digital portfolio and communication system, from Kindy to Year 6, has increased parent engagement and communication. The use of the Connected App ensures that parents are continually kept up to date on school and class matters. We also offer Cyber Safety workshops for all students, staff and parents, in an effort to ensure that our community members are responsible digital citizens.
In 2018, our Catholic Education System (CEWA) underwent a digital transformation and as a result we have experienced a number of IT developments. The LEADing Lights platform has introduced the student portal for all students in 1:1 digital device class rooms, making it easy for students to access all of their content in one place. The use of OneNote as a digital storage space has allowed students to store and access their own and teacher content, anywhere at any time.
The Years 4 to 6 classes have continued to implement and integrate Office 365, with students collaborating to complete documents and submitting tasks online. All classrooms are fitted with Apple TVs to ensure that students and teachers can mirror their devices to a central teaching platform. Green screen kits are used from Years 1 to 6, facilitating multimedia tasks and audiovisual projects.
A comprehensive Robotics and Coding program is implemented across the school to ensure students develop the necessary 21st century learning skills. Years 5 and 6 compete in the ROBO CUP Junior competition and in 2018 the students built and programmed EV3 Robots to rescue items from an obstacle course. We have continued to extend the Robotics program into early childhood using a bank of robots, such as Beebots, Osmo Kits, Spheros and EV3 Mindstorms. In today’s world, students need to be digitally literate and St Paul’s is well-placed to deliver the essential skills required to create successful 21st century learners.
Specialist programs are offered in Science, Physical Education, Italian and Music.
In our efforts to place an emphasis on the Science learning area, students from Pre Primary to Year 6 continued to learn Science as a specialist subject this year. A specialist Science teacher coordinates the “Primary Connections” Science program throughout the school, which develops students’ knowledge, understanding and skills in both science and literacy.
STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) learning, using an interdisciplinary and applied approach, has been a major feature of the curriculum at St Paul’s. This type of learning is collaborative and project-based, with students working closely together to solve real-world problems. STEM education is important because Science is everywhere in the world around us and Technology is continually expanding into every aspect of our lives. Our aim is to create critical thinkers, increase science literacy, and support the next generation of innovators.
The PE program at St Paul’s, coordinated by a PE specialist, is comprehensive, with a varied selection of activities taking place over the year. Along with the weekly specialist PE lessons and fitness sessions, the children participate in several ‘Sports Clinic’ incursions, the Edu-Dance Program, Year 6 formal dancing lessons, running club, athletics training, swimming training, swimming lessons, after-school tennis lessons, netball training, Walk to School Day and a Surfing program.
St Paul’s students compete in annual house and interschool swimming, cross-country and athletics carnivals; and tennis and cricket interschool competitions. We also participate in the national “Sporting Schools Project”, which provides an opportunity for the children from Years 1-6 to focus on after school sports, such as soccer, netball, football and tennis.
St Paul’s has a longstanding and successful partnership with the Italo-Australian Cultural Centre, who coordinate the Italian Program in the school and provide us with an Italian teacher. The aim of the program is to promote the Italian language and culture within the school.
The Music program at St Paul’s, under the direction of a Music specialist, continues to grow, with many students excelling in our School Choir and School Band. As part of our commitment to developing the School Band, Music scholarships are offered and students have access to afterschool instrumental lessons, provided by Keyed Up Music.
VALUE ADDED ACTIVITIES
Students are encouraged to strive for excellence and challenge themselves by becoming involved in the many extra-curricular activities on offer, such as:
Students also participate in a range of competitions and festivals, including:
AFTER SCHOOL CARE PROGRAM
On-site after school care is provided by Extend After School Care, which is a popular initiative with many families. The highly qualified and professional Extend staff provide a creative and funfilled program for the children, with a focus on quality, safety and respect.