Student Wellbeing & Engagement Policy

 Help for non-English speakers

If you need help to understand this policy, please contact the office on 9560 6371 or glen.waverley.south.ps@education.vic.gov.au

 

Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that all students and members of our school community understand:

  1. our commitment to providing a safe and supportive learning environment for students
  2. expectations for positive student behaviour
  3. support available to students and families
  4. our school’s policies and procedures for responding to inappropriate student behaviour.

Glen Waverley South Primary School is committed to providing a safe, secure and stimulating learning environment for all students.  We understand that students reach their full potential only when they are happy, healthy and safe, and that a positive school culture, where student participation is encouraged and valued, helps to engage students and support them in their learning. Our school acknowledges that student wellbeing and student learning outcomes are closely linked.

The objective of this policy is to support our school to create and maintain a safe, supportive and inclusive school environment consistent with our school’s values.

Scope

This policy applies to all school activities, including camps and excursions.

Contents

  1. School profile
  2. School values, philosophy and vision
  3. Wellbeing and engagement strategies
  4. Identifying students in need of support
  5. Student rights and responsibilities
  6. Student behavioural expectations and management
  7. Engaging with families
  8. Evaluation

Policy

  1. School profile

Glen Waverley South Primary School is located in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne in the City of Monash. The buildings are surrounded by spacious, well maintained grounds with an abundance of shaded areas, age appropriate playground equipment, an oval and a variety of outdoor courts catering for various sporting activities.  Glen Waverley South Primary School shares the same site as Brentwood Secondary College and Greenland Childcare center/preschool.

Glen Waverley South Primary School is committed to lifelong learning by providing an inclusive, supportive and nurturing community in which diversity is valued and celebrated. Our innovative curriculum and culture of excellence creates a stimulating learning environment that engages and challenges students to achieve personal success and make positive contributions to society.

In 2022, our enrolment is 316 and we have a staff of 28 including three specialists and six ES staff.  At Glen Waverley South Primary School, we are proud of our friendly and inclusive culture. Our school is enriched by a diverse and multicultural community.

Glen Waverley South Primary School has two main buildings comprising attractive classrooms, a fully computerised, well-stocked library, a Tutor/STEAM room, a Visual Arts classroom, a Japanese classroom, a Performing Arts classroom and a multipurpose centre. This state of the art multipurpose facility enriches the Physical Education, Visual Arts, Instrumental Music and the Out of School Hours programs. Features include a full sized basketball stadium with change rooms, stimulating visual arts and music studios and a spacious well-resourced ‘Out of School Hours’ area with a modern kitchen. The multipurpose centre is used for private music lessons, some performing arts activities, physical education sessions, gymnastics, school assemblies and for the Out of School Hours Care program.

The open learning environment facilitates 21st century pedagogy. Every classroom in the school is connected to the local area computer network and has wireless access to the internet. Each learning space is equipped with a SMART TV and all students have access to iPads, laptops and computers. All classrooms are heated and air-conditioned.

It is important to recognise that each teacher differentiates the curriculum to meet the learning needs of students with a wide range of abilities. This is applicable in both straight and multi-age level grades. All teachers use a range of ongoing assessments to plan and provide each child with appropriate learning opportunities across the curriculum. All children are provided with a supportive, engaging and challenging learning environment. All teachers work in teams to ensure the best learning outcomes for each child.

Specialist teachers provide expertise in the areas of Performing Arts, Visual Arts, Languages (Japanese), Physical Education and Sport and Literacy Intervention. In addition to the core curricula, enrichment programs are provided by way of high ability learning opportunities, an instrumental music program, choir, school musical, excursions, camps, environmental club, sports, rock band, taiko (Japanese drumming) group and lunchtime clubs. The school provides high quality, registered programs for Outside School Hours Care, including Before School Care, After School Care (including Pupil-free Days) and Vacation Care.

Glen Waverley South Primary School has a strong tradition of parent and community partnerships. An active School Council, Junior School Council, parent group and numerous volunteers represent a learning community committed to the school’s vision. 

 

  1. School values, philosophy and vision

Glen Waverley South Primary School’s learning community is committed to the improvement and enhancement of student learning in order to equip students for the future. All members of the school community, students, staff and parents, are open and committed to the shared vision of ongoing learning and continuous development in the provision of best educational practice.  Glen Waverley South Primary School’s learning community model, is characterised by:

A culture of:

  • lifelong and self-driven learning
  • commitment to personal growth, shared vision and team learning
  • assisting all students to embrace learning
  • excellence
  • connectedness through strong community partnerships.

Dedicated teachers delivering an exemplary Learning and Teaching program that facilitates:

  • achievement of academic, social, emotional and physical potential
  • a stimulating learning environment where students are highly engaged and motivated
  • inclusive, innovative and challenging curriculum
  • curriculum design, which caters for individual learning needs
  • engaging personalised learning experiences
  • student goal setting
  • explicit teaching of literacy and numeracy skills
  • inquiry learning.

A learning environment that:

  • provides equal opportunities and values diversity
  • develops knowledge and values
  • promotes student leadership opportunities
  • is positive, safe, supportive & cooperative
  • equips students with skills and knowledge to cope successfully in an ever-changing world.

School Values of RESPECT including:

Relationships / Excellence / Support / Passion / Engagement / Choice / Trust and honesty.

 

  1. Wellbeing and engagement strategies

Glen Waverley South Primary School has developed a range of strategies to promote engagement, an inclusive and safe environment, positive behaviour, and respectful relationships for all students in our school. We recognise the importance of student friendships and peer support in helping children and students feel safe and less isolated We acknowledge that some students may need extra social, emotional or educational support at school, and that the needs of students will change over time as they grow and learn.

Positive behaviours at school are enhanced when students participate in a school environment that is supportive and highly engaging.  The school considers student engagement as a core focus for all staff. All of our endeavours are student centred with an emphasis on stimulating learning programs that differentiate in order to cater for the individual needs of students.

A summary of the whole of school, targeted (year group specific) and individual engagement strategies used by our school is included below:

Whole School

  • high and consistent expectations of all staff, students and parents and carers
  • prioritise positive relationships between staff and students, recognising the fundamental role this plays in building and sustaining student wellbeing
  • creating a culture that is inclusive, engaging and supportive and that embraces and celebrates diversity and empowers all students to participate and feel valued
  • welcoming all parents/carers and being responsive to them as partners in learning
  • analysing and being responsive to a range of school data such as attendance, Attitudes to School Survey, parent survey data, student management data and school level assessment data
  • teachers at Glen Waverley South Primary School use a Gradual Release of Responsibility instructional framework to ensure an explicit, common and shared model of instruction to ensure that evidenced-based, high yield teaching practices are incorporated into all lessons
  • teachers at Glen Waverley South Primary School adopt a broad range of teaching and assessment approaches to effectively respond to the diverse learning styles, strengths and needs of our students and follow the standards set by the Victorian Institute of Teaching
  • our school’s Statement of Values and School Philosophy are incorporated into our curriculum and promoted to students, staff and parents so that they are shared and celebrated as the foundation of our school community
  • carefully planned transition programs to support students moving into different stages of their schooling
  • positive behaviour and student achievement is acknowledged in the classroom, and formally in school assemblies and communication to parents
  • monitor student attendance and implement attendance improvement strategies at a whole-school, cohort and individual level
  • students have the opportunity to contribute to and provide feedback on decisions about school operations through the Junior School Council and other forums including year group meetings. Students are also encouraged to speak with their teachers, Year Level Coordinator, Assistant Principal and Principal whenever they have any questions or concerns.
  • create opportunities for cross—age connections amongst students through buddies, school plays, athletics, music programs and JSC activities.
  • all students are welcome to self-refer to teachers, Assistant Principal and Principal if they would like to discuss a particular issue or feel as though they may need support of any kind. We are proud to have an ‘open door’ policy where students and staff are partners in learning.
  • we engage in school wide positive behaviour support with our staff and students, which includes programs such as:
    • Respectful Relationships
    • The Resilience Project
    • The Cyber Safety Project
  • programs, incursions and excursions developed to address issue specific needs or behaviour
  • opportunities for student inclusion (i.e. sports teams, clubs, recess and lunchtime activities)
  • buddy programs
  • measures are in place to empower our school community to identify, report and address inappropriate and harmful behaviours such as racism, homophobia and other forms of discrimination or harassment. 

Targeted

  • each year group has a Year Group Leader/Coordinator, a senior teacher responsible for their year, who monitor the health and wellbeing of students in their year, and act as a point of contact for students who may need additional support
  • our English as a second language students are supported through our EAL program, and all cultural and linguistically diverse students are supported to feel safe and included in our school
  • Koorie students are supported to engage fully in their education, in a positive learning environment that understands and appreciates the strength of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture
  • we support learning and wellbeing outcomes of students from refugee background
  • we provide a positive and respectful learning environment for our students who identify as LGBTIQ+ and follow the Department’s policy on LGBTIQ Student Support [insert any specific measures at your school to support LGBTIQ+ students]   
  • all students in Out of Home Care are supported in accordance with the Department’s policy on Supporting Students in Out-of-Home Care including being appointed a Learning Mentor, having an Individual Learning Plan and a Student Support Group (SSG) and being referred to Student Support Services for an Educational Needs Assessment
  • students with a disability are supported to be able to engage fully in their learning and school activities in accordance with the Department’s policy on Students with Disability, such as  through reasonable adjustments to support access to learning programs, consultation with families and where required, student support groups and individual education plans 
  • wellbeing and health staff will undertake health promotion and social skills development in response to needs identified by student wellbeing data, classroom teachers or other school staff each year
  • students enrolled under the Department’s international student program are supported in accordance with our legal obligations and Department policy and guidelines at: International Student Program

The following programs and strategies are targeted towards improving and enhancing student engagement and learning.

  • Individual Education Plans – Classroom teachers use data to identify students in their class who they believe will benefit from having an Individual Education Plan (IEP). The IEP outlines specific strategies the teacher will employ to target the student’s learning needs. Parents will be provided with a copy of the plan, which will include ideas for them to actively support their child’s development.
  • Literacy Intervention - Students will be assessed and prioritised for a limited Literacy Intervention program.
  • EAL support - Students will be assessed and prioritised for a limited English as an Additional Language support program.
  • Student Leadership Program – Senior school students have the opportunity to take on roles as House, Specialist and School Captains. Other leadership roles across our school include:

-Environmental Club

-Junior School Council

  • Student leaders lead our whole school assembly, assist with school tours and other special school events.
  • Junior School Council – Students from Foundation to Year 6 are elected to participate in the Junior School Council (JSC). This program provides a voice for students in the way the school operates, and promotes positive behaviours and attitudes. The JSC organises activities and events to engage students in the school community, raises funds for a range of community charities and projects through whole school events, and also provides Council members with leadership opportunities.
  • Buddy Program – Students from Foundation to Level 2 are linked with a buddy from Levels 5 and 6.  Regular activities are planned to provide opportunities for the students to build positive relationships.
  • Support Staff – Department of Education and Training (DET) Student Support Staff provide integral support to the school in meeting the specialised needs of some children. The following staff who assist children to reach their potential include:

-Speech Pathologists

-School Social Workers

-Psychologists

-School Nurse

These staff members work in conjunction with the child, the child’s parents and the teachers to provide a program that caters to the individual needs.

  • Out of School Hours Care – The school has a vibrant and popular Out of School Hours Care (OSHC) program which provides before and after school and vacation care. This program is extremely popular and one of many reasons parents choose to send their children to Glen Waverley South Primary School.
  • House System – The school operates a House system in which students participate in one of 4 team focused groups – Bradman, Landy, Cuthbert and Goolagong. Success in the House system is dependent upon all students working together and demonstrating positive behaviours in class, and other learning areas, whereupon House points are awarded. A perpetual trophy passes to the winning House each term.
  • Transition program – aims to make the transition to and from Glen Waverley South Primary School a smooth and happy event. Students who adapt easily to their new environment will engage in their learning more readily.

-Pre-school to Foundation – enrolled pre-school students participate in a stimulating program at Glen Waverley South Primary School which runs during term 4 to help ease the transition to primary school.

-Year 6 to Year 7 – in partnership with Brentwood Secondary College, a program at the end of the school year prepares the Year 6 students for the transition to secondary school.

Individual

Glen Waverley South Primary School implements a range of strategies that support and promote individual engagement. These can include:

  • building constructive relationships with students at risk or students who are vulnerable due to complex individual circumstances
  • meeting with student and their parent/carer to talk about how best to help the student engage with school
  • developing an Individual Learning Plan and/or a Behaviour Support Plan
  • considering if any environmental changes need to be made, for example changing the classroom set up
  • referring the student to:
    • school-based wellbeing supports
    • Student Support Services
    • Appropriate external supports such as council based youth and family services, other allied health professionals, headspace, child and adolescent mental health services or ChildFirst
    • Re-engagement programs such as Navigator

Where necessary the school will support the student’s family to engage by:

  • being responsive and sensitive to changes in the student’s circumstances and health and wellbeing
  • collaborating, where appropriate and with the support of the student and their family, with any external allied health professionals, services or agencies that are supporting the student
  • monitoring individual student attendance and developing an Attendance Improvement Plans in collaboration with the student and their family
  • engaging with our regional Koorie Education Support Officers
  • running regular Student Support Group meetings for all students:
    •  with a disability
    • in Out of Home Care
    • with other complex needs that require ongoing support and monitoring.

 

  1. Identifying students in need of support

Glen Waverley South Primary School is committed to providing the necessary support to ensure our students are supported intellectually, emotionally and socially. Glen Waverley South Primary School will utilise the following information and tools to identify students in need of extra emotional, social or educational support:

  • personal, health and learning information gathered upon enrolment and while the student is enrolled
  • attendance records
  • academic performance
  • observations by school staff such as changes in engagement, behaviour, self-care, social connectedness and motivation
  • attendance, detention and suspension data
  • engagement with families

 

  1. Student rights and responsibilities

All members of our school community have a right to experience a safe and supportive school environment. We expect that all students, staff, parents and carers treat each other with respect and dignity. Our school’s Statement of Values highlights the rights and responsibilities of members of our community.

Students have the right to:

  • participate fully in their education
  • feel safe, secure and happy at school
  • learn in an environment free from bullying, harassment, violence, racism, discrimination or intimidation
  • express their ideas, feelings and concerns.

Students have the responsibility to:

  • participate fully in their educational program
  • display positive behaviours that demonstrate respect for themselves, their peers, their teachers and members of the school community
  • respect the right of others to learn.

Students who may have a complaint or concern about something that has happened at school are encouraged to speak to their parents or carers and approach a trusted teacher or a member of the school leadership team. Further information about raising a complaint or concern is available in our Complaints Policy.

 

  1. Student behavioural expectations and management

Behavioural expectations of students are grounded in our school’s Statement of Values/Student code of conduct.

Violence, bullying, and other offensive and harmful behaviours such as racism, harassment and discrimination will not be tolerated and will be managed in accordance with this policy. Bullying will be managed in accordance with our Bullying Prevention Policy.

When a student acts in breach of the behaviour standards of our school community, Glen Waverley South Primary School will institute a staged response, consistent with the Department’s policies on behaviour, discipline and student wellbeing and engagement. Where appropriate, parents will be informed about the inappropriate behaviour and the disciplinary action taken by teachers and other school staff.

Our school considers, explores and implement positive and non-punitive interventions to support student behaviour before considering disciplinary measures such as detention, withdrawal of privileges or withdrawal from class.

Disciplinary measures may be used as part of a staged response to inappropriate behaviour in combination with other engagement and support strategies to ensure that factors that may have contributed to the student’s behaviour are identified and addressed. Disciplinary measures at our school will be applied fairly and consistently. Students will always be provided with an opportunity to be heard.

Disciplinary measures that may be applied include:

  • warning a student that their behaviour is inappropriate
  • teacher controlled consequences such as moving a student in a classroom or other reasonable and proportionate responses to misbehaviour
  • withdrawal of privileges
  • referral to the Year Level Coordinator
  • restorative practices
  • detentions
  • behaviour support and intervention meetings
  • suspension
  • expulsion

Suspension, expulsion and restrictive interventions are measures of last resort and may only be used in situations consistent with Department policy, available at:

In line with Ministerial Order 1125, no student aged 8 or younger will be expelled without the approval of the Secretary of the Department of Education and Training.

The Principal of Glen Waverley South Primary School is responsible for ensuring all suspensions and expulsions are recorded on CASES21.

Corporal punishment is prohibited by law and will not be used in any circumstance at our school.

 

  1. Engaging with families

Glen Waverley South Primary School values the input of parents and carers, and we will strive to support families to engage in their child’s learning and build their capacity as active learners. We aim to be partners in learning with parents and carers in our school community.

We work hard to create successful partnerships with parents and carers by:

  • ensuring that all parents have access to our school policies and procedures, available on our school website
  • maintaining an open, respectful line of communication between parents and staff
  • providing parent volunteer opportunities so that families can contribute to school activities
  • involving families with homework and other curriculum-related activities
  • involving families in school decision making
  • coordinating resources and services from the community for families
  • including families in Student Support Groups, and developing individual plans for students.

 

 

  1. Evaluation

Glen Waverley South Primary School will collect data each year to understand the frequency and types of wellbeing issues that are experienced by our students so that we can measure the success or otherwise of our school based strategies and identify emerging trends or needs.

Sources of data that will be assessed on an annual basis include:

  • Attitude to School Survey data
  • incidents data recorded on Compass
  • school reports
  • Parent Opinion survey data
  • CASES21, including attendance and absence data
  • SOCS

Glen Waverley South Primary School will also regularly monitor available data dashboards to ensure any wellbeing or engagement issues are acted upon in a timely manner and any intervention occurs as soon as possible.

COMMUNICATION

This policy will be communicated to our school community in the following ways:

  • Available publicly on our school’s website
  • Included in staff induction processes
  • Included in transition and enrolment packs
  • Included as annual reference in school newsletter
  • Made available in hard copy from school administration upon request

Our school will also ensure it follows the mandatory parent/carer notification requirements with respect to suspensions and expulsions outlined in the Department’s policies at:

Further information and resources

The following Department of Education and Training policies are relevant to this Student Engagement and Wellbeing Policy:

The following school policies are also relevant to this Student Wellbeing and Engagement Policy:

  • Child Safety Policy
  • Bullying Prevention Policy
  • Inclusion and Diversity Policy

POLICY REVIEW AND APPROVAL

Policy last reviewed

July 2022

Consultation

School Council

Student Learning and Wellbeing Subcommittee

School Community via Compass

School Community via Newsletter

Approved by

Principal

Next scheduled review date

July 2023