At SJB we have an understanding that all students are individuals, hence learn at different rates and present with differing levels of ability. Whether our students are Validated (diagnosed) with learning, mental health or speech and language issues, or not, ALL our staff are aware of and have an understanding of how best to differentiate the curriculum for all students in our care. The contemporary Learning Support Model focuses on making adjustments for students all day, everyday, as opposed to students waiting for aide time once a week (old model). This means that our students are catered for on a daily basis with the support of their classroom teacher.
Adjustments may include, but are certainly not limited to things like: repeating and rephrasing instructions, providing more visual prompts, reading with or to a student each day, allowing students to access writing tasks on Chrome Books instead of handwriting, providing personalised reward schedules to encourage task completion, providing motor/sensory breaks, using timers to help with organisation, task analysis with students, post-it note reminders, one to one support in the classroom, specific social and playground options to alleviate stress or anxiety in the playground and encourage peer relationships, reducing task load, and assessing at different levels. Often, the students themselves are also consulted as to what would work best for them.
If you have a question about how your child is being catered for in the classroom please make an appointment to meet with the class teacher. Studies show that children achieve the best learning outcomes when parents and teachers work together and are “on the same page”.
Learning is a complex process. Teachers specialise in learning and as educational providers, we take reasonable steps to ensure that all students can participate in the school’s courses and programs, at a level that meets their needs. However, if a student is not progressing as expected, academically or as a member of the school community, teachers may require additional information to assist in planning. Specialists such as paediatricians, psychologists, speech therapists and occupational therapists, are able to complete diagnostic assessments that provide information about how a student processes information, their strengths and areas of challenge.
Specialist knowledge and/or assessments help us build the learning profile of students in our care and provides recommendations to inform school planning and programming. Developing a collaborative approach between the family, specialist and the school greatly benefits the student. We can share common goals and work towards these together.
Decisions to consult specialist are not made without close examination of school based data, the current support initiatives and consultation with the family. A collaborative approach with outside specialists helps schools understand and support the needs of the students in our care.