In January of this year, the senior leaders of the College gathered for three days to plan our approach to the 2018 school year. This included planning on ways to be both informed and inspired to continue pursuing deeper parental engagement in the life of the College.
Last year, for example, we started the Learning Walks at Officer Campus, Technology and PAM inductions across all Campuses, and some Maths Pathways nights. All these initiatives were aimed at empowering parents to be able to participate more fully in the education of their children. More recently we have had parent consultations around curriculum reform and improvement.
As I mentioned, in January we started the process of looking at how to involve parents at a deeper level. Rachel Saliba, Executive Officer of the Victorian Catholic Schools’ Parent Body, took us through the principles and practices of deliberate parent engagement. As a result, I am pleased to present for your consideration an invitation to participate in the three Campus focus groups, which be formed in the second half of this year.
If you have a deep love of the College, a desire to assist other parents, a passion for student success and the capacity to contribute in a group setting, then please read the information below provided by our Heads of Campus and respond via the link within the document:
Our College is a faith filled learning community in which the gospel message is clearly in evidence; one which acknowledges Christ as the Way, the Truth and the Life.
Each member of our community is called to be a living witness to the Gospel where Christ is encountered. It is our desire that, through the deepening of the culture of positive learning partnerships informed by positive psychology, student achievement will be enhanced. We invite parents to work together with staff to assist students to have a productive, fruitful and enjoyable experience at St Francis Xavier College.
Parents have a particularly important role to play in the educating community, since it is to them that primary and natural responsibility for their children’s education belongs. (Congregation for Catholic Education 1997)
We recognise and respect that parents are the prime educators of their child. In an effort to enhance the open communication between parents and the school we invite interested parents to register their interest in joining Parent Focus Groups at each campus.
These groups do not replace the Advisory Board or Parents and Friends Association. The Parent Focus Groups offer an opportunity for parents to gather and share a parent perspective regarding school matters such as Catholic Identity, wellbeing, pathways and connectedness to the College. These groups will work to:
We are launching this initiative because we know that home/school partnerships provide the opportunity to develop a shared understanding of learning and the needs of adolescents. It is our intention to help parents support their children during their secondary schooling knowing that one of the most influential factors in creating success for students is you.
The Parent Focus Groups would generally meet once a term. Each group would be comprised of around 10 parents and several College staff including the Head of Campus as host.
Parents appointed to the Parent Focus Groups would be expected to;
Should you be interested in joining a Parent Focus Group you are invited to complete the expression of interest form via this link:
In the event that we receive more parent nominations than the number of available positions the College Advisory Board will ratify the appointments with a view to ensuring a representative membership. Successful nominees will be notified of dates and venues thereafter.
We look forward to working collaboratively with you so that all students can reach their full potential.