The Scoop on SSNP - July 2012
Welcome to the July edition of the Smarter Schools National Partnerships (SSNP) Newsletter. This issue contains a number of new and exciting activities taking place under the Smarter Schools National Partnerships in the Northern Territory.
A number of key pieces of work have been completed since our last newsletter, including the findings of the Maximising Improvements in Literacy and Numeracy (MILaN) evaluation funded under the Literacy and Numeracy National Partnership. The report evaluated the effectiveness of the initiative and was able to demonstrate that schools involved in MILaN showed significant improvement in both reading and numeracy as measured from NAPLAN data.
|Students benefiting from the KiTES program (jpg 248 kb)|
Additionally, the SSNP Annual Report for 2011 has been submitted to the Commonwealth Government. The report highlights key initiatives and milestone achievements that have been untaken in both the government and non-government sectors.
Northern Territory SSNP activities were shared with the National Indigenous Education Working Group meeting held in Brisbane recently. Representatives from both government and non-government sectors shared examples with the group on cross sectorial design and implementation of SSNPs in the Territory.
I hope that you enjoy this edition of the Newsletter. As ever, we are always eager to hear about new stories in regards to Smarter Schools National Partnerships. Either telephone 8999 5851 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to share these with us.
VAMPtv (Video Art, Music Production television) is an initiative developed by the Northern Territory Music School that provides students, particularly in remote and regional schools, the opportunity to produce a television style show online. VAMPtv engages students in learning and allows them to showcase their individual art work through dance, music, drama and visual arts, connecting schools and communities together in a secure online environment. This initiative is supported under the Low Socio-Economic Status School Communities (Low SES) National Partnership.
In March this year, teachers from remote schools were invited to participate in professional learning workshops held in both Darwin and Alice Springs. The workshops gave teachers the opportunity to develop practical skills in videography as well as learn about the VAMPtv website to enable them to become coordinators of the project at their school. Approximately 20 participants attended each workshop session, with a total of 27 schools being represented.
The VAMPtv team is already seeing the benefits of the workshops, with an additional 30 memberships of the website and an increase in the number of schools uploading videos.
“Filming techniques and camera angle stuff was great, as was the 'winning' script for Hollywood movies. The hints and tips of filming flash disk is a great resource.
I really enjoyed the practical aspects of the course - storyboarding and shooting footage as well as the advice given about scaffolding learning. It was a great day and I got lots of hints and tips that I will be trying to implement in my school - I'm running my own PD about VAMPtv for my school in the coming weeks!” - Workshop participant
To view the videos or obtain further information, please visit the VAMPtv website.
Highly Mobile Student Inclusion Unit
Highly Mobile Student Inclusion Unit is a new initiative situated in Alice Springs which is funded under the Low SES National Partnership. The Unit has been officially named KiTES- ‘Kids in Town Engaged in School’ and began operation at Sadadeen Primary School mid-way through term one 2012. The program is designed to assist very remote families for a period of up to 3 weeks, giving students between the ages of 5-12 the opportunity to participate in their home school teachings while they are visiting Alice Springs.
Whilst away from school, students currently share their learning via wiki sites. In the near future, the program will be more interactive through the use of technology, with students being able to speak, see, and interact directly with their school and classmates whilst they are away.
Currently the program has approximately 5-6 students per day, which is a great start, and capacity to expand up to 15 students. The uptake is encouraging as KiTES gives students the opportunity to continue their learning while away from their community, whereas in the past students may have missed out on weeks of schooling, potentially falling behind in their learning.
A further four SSNP videos have now been produced to showcase work that continues to be undertaken throughout Territory schools to improve educational outcomes for students under SSNP. The schools and activities that are highlighted include Yipirinya School, Ltyentye Apurte Catholic School, the Barkly region and the Residential Care Workers Project.
Ltyentye Apurte Catholic School is one of the schools featured in the videos. The school is part of the Engaging Remote Indigenous Students initiative funded under both the Low SES and the Closing the Gap National Partnerships. Two initiatives supported under the SSNP at the school are Revolution and Rainbows and World learning Opportunity.
|Fathers viewing student artwork at the Father’s Day Festival (jpg 311 kb)|
Revolution and Rainbows is a project to increase community engagement with the school. The title was created by the community as they are looking for a revolution in education. The rainbow arch represents how schooling was, and how it will change into the future. The project encourages participation from all community members so they can establish what the needs and expectations are for the school. An activity that was part of this project was the Father’s Day event. Its aim was to encourage students’ fathers to attend the school and be a part of the school community. The school had a large turnout of fathers attend the celebrations and testament to its success has been the increase in the number of male adults attending other school events like camping trips and excursions. By volunteering their time in the school as positive role models for students, ties are being strengthening between the school and the community.
‘They had a wonderful day and all of this spreads throughout the school. You can get a feel for these things, you know when they are working, know when the kids love having their fathers up here. It was a great day.’ - Project Officer Revolutions and Rainbows
World Learning Opportunities is another initiative for students which hopes to be extended to the wider community. Through access to technology, students are provided with greater exposure to other cultures and current events around the world. The students are becoming more proficient in the use of computers and are currently using video conferencing to chat to other students interstate and around the world. In the near future the computer lab will be open after hours for the whole community to access.
With a strong focus on community engagement, Ltyentye Apurte Catholic School is seeing results. Participation rates of family members are on the way up, showing positive signs that strategies are working.