Stock images of photographed students appear in good-news-school-stories of newspapers and newsletters. Now, as we use the stunning array of photographic and video tools available to us, once safety and privacy are assured, what are we learning about what’s needed to authentically document our students’ learning?
As the principal of Wooranna Park Primary School, Ray Trotter has guided the school through some remarkable changes since 1997. Today the school commands international attention for its on-going effort to aim towards ‘next practice’ for meeting the needs of its students. His paper “One School’s Journey To Create A New Education Paradigm”, written originally for an education journal, is the first part of an ebook being developed through our educational service known as ‘The School Story Experience’. Its purpose is to enable schools to authentically share the epic journeys that take place pedagogically-speaking every day. Ray’s paper sets the project off on a great start.
School Story Experience is an educational service for school leaders and their school communities. This article highlights how, at its core, it helps manage the complexities of communicating a schools’ vision and mission through 21st-century digital communication strategies and tools. Most importantly, it sets out how we view the service as a pedagogy-based one, rather than marketing or public relations. Ironically, though, the approach shows that the best advertising for any school are the affirmations which it receives from its own students, staff and parents.
In 2018, I had the privilege of interviewing three teachers about their work with Year 2 students. They reflected on how early it’s possible for children to view themselves as active citizens in Australian democracy, built on the belief that their voices have power and agency. The discussion began with Mary Boutros pointing out the commonality between how parents and teachers deal with a child’s developmental milestones.