Case Study: Leadership and Inclusion - One school’s innovative approach
At the start of 2016 the leadership team decided to address areas identified as needing specific improvement in order to bring about positive change in the school:
- School attendance – one of the lowest in the central Queensland region
- Behaviour – much higher number of incidents than Queensland average
- Achievement – poor to average passing grades
- Staff morale – low
The school leadership knew which areas they needed to work on so they devised three macro-questions to guide and focus their planning for effecting change:
- How can we create a sense of belonging for students, staff and community?
- How do we create cross grade support programs for an inclusive school community?
- How do we develop a positive sense of self, family and culture within the curriculum?
The answer was ………………………
Yumbin is the Wakka Wakka word meaning ‘all of us’. This concept encompasses Eidsvold’s ability as a school, staff and community to work together toward the common goal of creating an inclusive, aspirational culture where students can thrive.
This concept has since become the underlying ethos of the school.
“We realised we had to instill a sense of togetherness through language and culture"
Preston Parter, Principal
“STUDENTS NEED A SAFE PLACE TO BE THE BEST THEY CAN BE”
Building cultural identity, belonging and inclusion
The leadership team focused on building this sense of togetherness by embedding a variety of programs across the curriculum. These programs work in conjunction to build specific skills and to promote a school culture that promotes wellbeing for learning:
- Positive Behaviour for Learning revolves around the explicit teaching of expected behaviours so that learning outcomes are improved for all students.
- Rhythm2Recovery supports students’ social and emotional development through rhythmic musical experiences.
- Leading with Strength celebrates diversity and builds a strong sense of identity by valuing high expectation relationships
- Rock and Water builds resilience, confidence and social skills through a program base on self-awareness
- The Wakka Wakka language revitalization program strengthens connection to local culture and creates an acceptance of diversity
Wakka Wakka language Nursery rhyme
Children have fun learning to sing nursery rhymes in language with the help from Wakka Wakka language teachers.
Students proudly celebrate the culture, building a sense of identity and belonging.
“CREATE PROGRAMS FOR SPECIFIC GROUPS AND INDIVIDUALS”
The local community and country are essential components of the life and culture of the school.