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Bowral High School

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Location: Bowral

Bowral High School is a proud comprehensive public high school with strong links to the local community. The school motto: ‘Exceptional Learning Opportunities for All’ defines a culture where excellence is not only valued but expected and where students are challenged in their learning. The school is committed to promoting fairness, nurturing respectful relationships and developing personal responsibility. Bowral High School is a Positive Behaviour for Success (PBS) school; students are actively taught how to model the school values; Respect, Responsibility and Fairness.

How has your school used its Gonski funding?

The additional funding has enabled the school to offer a suite of engagement programs to students. These programs include an online literacy program- Lexia that all students access in stage 4. Social and emotional learning skills are taught to targeted students in stages 4 and 5 in a program called XSELs. Student leadership is supported through Speak, Act, Lead camps and Kindness Projects. Leadership capacity is built in staff through leadership projects that align with the school plan and the Australian Professional Teaching Standards.

How has Gonski made a positive difference for students?

Students’ outcomes have improved across a range of school data. Attendance has improved by over 5% since 2012. Students report a greater sense of belonging and connectedness to the school in Tell Them From Me surveys over the last two years. The value added data for literacy and numeracy Years 7-9 has shown positive growth over the last two years, above that of similar schools. Staff have access to meaningful leadership opportunities building capacity and skills across the school. Greater collaboration and leadership development have been supported for staff leading to improvements in professional practice and feedback.

What could your school do with Gonski funding in the future?

The Gonski funding will enable us to continue to provide quality learning environments for our students, supporting them to learn and thrive. Building staff capacity is important to develop school leaders of the future. The funding has provided flexibility and opportunities for innovative practice. Support for both students and staff is enhanced, promoting wellbeing, engagement and learning.

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