Our extension and enrichment programs and strategies have been created to cater for students who are highly capable. At Illawarra Christian School, enrichment:
- gives the student more time to study concepts in greater depth, breadth and complexity
- provides opportunities for students to pursue learning in their own areas of interest and strengths
- keeps advanced students engaged and supports their accelerated academic needs.
We identify students who might benefit from involvement in our extension and enrichment programs through a variety of means, including data obtained through testing and assessments, consultation with teachers, and sometimes, an application process directed at the students themselves.
The School caters for highly able students in a variety of different ways, ranging from in-class differentiation, ability grouped classes, and focus groups, right through to subject acceleration and grade skipping, in exceptional circumstances.
Read more about some of the opportunities available to our students here.
The Student Learning Opportunities team works closely together to identify students who would benefit from additional support, and then to implement that support in consultation with parents and professionals.
Learning Support K–6
From Kindergarten through to Year 6, our teacher aides support student learning in the classroom, working with individual students or with small groups. Some students attend small numeracy and literacy classes where they feel safe to ask questions and practise concepts in a more individualised environment.
Three tiers of learning are employed across the school:
- Tier 1 - differentiated whole class learning and instruction
- Tier 2 - specialist teachers provide flexible instruction in smaller classes in Mathematics and English, meeting the needs of students who may benefit from a slower pace, more repetition and smaller groups.
- Tier 3 - intervention targeted to students who require more intense instruction. This may involve pull-out programs chosen specifically to boost the student's understanding.
Through our junior years, trained staff implement both the MiniLit and MacqLit Reading Programs for students who need a reading boost. This early intervention has benefits across all key learning areas.
Learning Support 7–12
We continue to support our students throughout secondary school, analysing their progress and considering their wellbeing needs. The high level of communication with parents and the stable learning environment in classrooms benefit our students for whom learning can be challenging.
Our teaching staff attend professional development training them to cater for the varying learning needs of all students. Quality differentiated teaching is implemented in all programs across all lessons.
An additional small class in English and Mathematics from Year 7-10 caters for students who would benefit from specialised instruction in literacy or numeracy. Progress and needs are constantly monitored to determine the best possible learning provisions.
Our educational support staff work with individuals and small groups on a needs basis. Our intimate knowledge of our students' needs allows us to develop a schedule of learning support individualised to each learner.
Where appropriate, we provide assistance with assessment tasks so that students might fully demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the subject area. NESA offers a range of special provisions for HSC students, and we apply for these when we are confident the requirements for provision are met.