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 Student Support

Research suggests that it is vital that schools and families develop a team approach if they are to provide the optimum learning environment for children to reach their potential during their primary school years.  Sometimes children experience difficulties (with school work, friendship groups, self confidence etc).  Sometimes children need greater challenges or a higher degree of monitoring by school staff for a period of time.  These issues might be noticed at home or at school, or even in their friendship groups.

If you have any concerns about your child, or if you would like to inform us of any needs or requirements your child has, the first thing to do is to communicate with your child’s class teacher.  They spend a great deal of time with your child during the day.  By sharing your concerns, knowledge or questions with the teacher you can provide valuable information about your child’s needs.  Just by discussing strategies and being consistent between home and school you may be able to address these concerns to the benefit of your child. This can often be enough to improve the situation.

It is extremely important that we communicate with each other about any issues or questions we have about the children in our care.  So don’t be alarmed if a teacher or other staff member requests a meeting to discuss your child progress or well being.   It is our way of keeping communication open and ensuring we are working with you to support and extend your child to the best of our ability.  It is through the process of communication that we can develop a team approach to resolving issues, providing support, monitoring or challenging your children (and our students) to be the best they can be.

At St Pat’s we also have a team of people who work beyond the classroom to provide support and investigate questions that parents or teachers may have about a child.

Introducing the Student Support Administration Team:

This Team consists of:

  • Mrs. Susan Geaney (School Principal),
  • Mr. Peter Campbell (Assistant to the Principal: RE)
  • Mrs. Karen Holmes (Guidance Counsellor)
  • Ms. Chrissi O’Connell (Support Teacher – Inclusive Education)

What is the purpose of the Student Support Administration team?

  • To support class teachers and parents in educating and providing care to their students / children.
  • To gather current information and develop a plan of action to begin to answer questions or address concerns.
  • To share information and ensure a team approach when supporting students.
  • To investigate issues and provide feedback to parents and teachers regarding students’ development, well-being and -educational program.
  • To ensure accountability and monitoring in the support provided for students as they progress through school.

How do I access this team of people in the school?

This team meets weekly.  Class teachers may put in a referral regarding a student in their class.  Or a parent may call one of the team to discuss their child.  Then that team member brings the issue to the group for discussion and possible action, if necessary.  The issues that are discussed can be varied and many, including behaviour difficulties, learning issues, emotional concerns, social skills, extending and encouraging student achievement, looking into funding possibilities to support student success, etc.

What could some of the outcomes of this process be?

The outcomes of assistance from the Student Support Admin Team can be varied.  It is a way of finding support and solutions within our own school community, as well as involving other support personnel as necessary.  At the end of these meetings an action plan is usually put in place that is then reviewed over time.  These actions may include but not limited to professional advice for a teacher, emotional and professional support for parents, program intervention by our Classroom Support Team or Guidance Counsellor, further testing and data gathering, referral on to outside support agencies.

Our Classroom Support Team

Our Classroom Support Team are the ground-force team that assist the Teaching Staff and the Student Support Admin Team in delivering many of the intervention programs that are designed to assist the needs of the learners in our school.

Brenda Carige, our School’s Enhancement Teacher assists with delivering these programs in classrooms as well as coordinating some of the work of the Integration Teacher-Aides with the Student Support Team and Classroom Teaching Staff.

Our Classroom Teacher-Aides play an important role in the day to day practical delivering of programs with the assistance and direction of Teachers.

Children with Disabilities/High Support Needs 

When an application for enrolment of a student with a disability or high support needs occurs, an Enrolment Support Process is used.  This process is devised by Brisbane Catholic Education and through it, parents, the Principal and support personnel, explore the child’s needs and the school’s capacity to provide a suitable learning environment for that child.  An early approach to the school is appreciated if enrolment of a student with high support needs is desired as this allows time to research all of the data needed to assist in the decision-making process.​