Middle Update

Feb 20th 2020

Middle School Camps - Date Claimers

Students in the Middle School participate in a different outdoor education camp each year. This year’s camps are:

  • Year 7: Tuesday 21 July - Friday 24 July, Noosa North Shore Camp Grounds
  • Year 8: Tuesday 21 July - Friday 24 July, Noosa North Shore Retreat
  • Year 9: Monday 30 March - Friday 3 April, Brooyar State Forest, Gympie (Parents of students in Year 9 will receive detailed information about the upcoming camp next week.)

 

Goal Setting in Learning Analytics

Learning Analytics is a treasure trove of academic information about students, which parents are able to access through the Parent Portal. Right now, parents can only see historical information about their children’s academic performance. However, over the next few weeks, as teachers start entering the results of assessment, the continual reporting aspect of Learning Analytics used in the Middle and Senior schools will become more and more useful.

 

Another very useful tool I would encourage parents to explore with their children is goal setting. Over the next two weeks during Pastoral Care students will be encouraged to complete their goal setting in Learning Analytics. This information is invaluable for teachers as they seek to help each student become the best they can be. In addition to students specifying the mark they would like to receive, they are asked to reflect on their previous approach to learning and set strategies for achieving their goals. Students are also able to set non-academic goals they wish to work on.

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Accessing Learning Analytics will require parents to use the Parent Portal, available at our.stlukes.qld.edu.au

Information about the Parent Portal and instructions on how to use it are available on the School website at www.stlukes.qld.edu.au/community/online-portals

 

Monitoring / Blocking Electronic Devices

The School is occasionally approached by parents requesting information or advice about limiting access to electronic devices, or the internet, at school and at home. There are a number of aspects to consider about this and, generally, they all result in a trade off between ease of use and preventing unwanted behaviour.

 

While at school, and accessing the School network, students are protected from potentially harmful internet access by the School’s physical and software-based security systems. These systems prevent students from accessing pornography, violence, suspicious websites and illegal downloads. Furthermore, interactions using school-provided communication applications (email, chat) can be retrieved so that appropriate digital behaviour can be addressed through Pastoral Care and the School’s Behaviour Management processes. Beyond these mechanisms, the School promotes responsible use of electronic devices rather than blocking everything. This means that students are able to access various other applications, including games, but are only able to do so at appropriate times.

 

As a BYOD school, St Luke’s does not have the authority to install monitoring software on student-owned devices. Even if the School had the ability to install such software, parents across the School have different philosophies on digital interactions and thresholds for what they allow their children to do. As such, for parents who choose to limit their children’s devices more than what is described above, it is necessary for them to install monitoring / blocking software on their children’s devices.

 

It is worth noting that mobile phones often pose a bigger risk than a tablet or laptop, because they provide unfiltered, high speed connections to the internet. The School cannot restrict the 3G/4G (and soon 5G) connections that mobile phones use in any way. Concerned parents who opt to install parental software on their children’s devices should look for the products that also protect mobile phones.

 

Mr Matthew Hughes

Head of Middle School

 

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