One of the great strengths of our School community is the tremendous quality and calibre of the teaching staff who work with our students to guide and nurture them to achieve their very best. Teaching is one of the most rewarding but also most complex professions available today and I am so proud of the commitment and dedication shown by our staff. Whilst our educators have a daily focus on their classes and students, many of them also make significant contributions to education more broadly. This may be through involvement with assessment and reporting through VCAA or participation in the many professional organisations which exist to improve our approach to teaching and learning.
At Berwick Grammar School, we are a member of the International Boys School Coalition (IBSC), the peak body for education and research in the areas of teaching and learning for boys. This is organisation provides a vital link between our school and others, enabling us to both access and participate in the latest research and thinking about how we teach boys.
Two of our leaders here at Berwick, Ms Lauren Cook and Mrs Helen McDonald have been selected from high quality candidates to participate in recent research projects which both have tangible implications for the work occurring with boys. Ms Cook recently presented the outcomes of her 12 month research project into the promotion of positive models of masculinity through story and narrative. Further indication of Ms Cook’s expertise in this area was provided when she presented a Workshop on The Growing Good Men Project at Berwick Grammar School. I am very proud to say that I have been contacted by several educators from around Australia who have gone out of their way to contact me to commend Ms Cook on the outstanding quality of her scholarship.
Mrs McDonald, our Director of Student Growth has embarked upon a 12 month research journey, exploring how the successful project based learning curriculum of the 21C program may be implemented at Senior levels. The outcomes of this research will have significant outcomes for our teaching and learning programs at all levels as we consider how to best engage our students with learning, grounded in real life challenges and obstacles. These are just two prominent examples of the extra work our dedicated staff have been undertaking to enhance the learning of our students.
HOT OFF THE PRESS
As I finish writing this article, I have just been informed that in recognition of her ongoing leadership in education, Ms Lauren Cook has been awarded a prestigious honour in being named as one of The Australian Council of Educators New Voices in Educational Leadership Scholars. This award is presented to young educators making significant contributions in their fields and provides wonderful recognition of Ms Cook, and also the work of the team at Berwick Grammar who are engaged in the wonderful work of not only teaching boys but striving to reach them through emotional connection and role modelling. Well done Ms Cook, further details at: http://www.acel.org.au/ACEL/alumni
Dr Steven Middleton