Milton Public School
Location: Milton, south coast, NSW
Milton Public School, a K-6 school on the south coast of NSW, has an enrolment of 650 students about half of whom are from low-income backgrounds. Around 40 students are from non-English-speaking backgrounds, and about 5% of the students are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander.
How Milton Public School has used Gonski funding
Milton PS has received about $165,000 in Gonski funding, which has been used to improve teaching and learning, support educational best practice, and to provide extra staffing and resources for the benefit of all students. Improvement strategies include formation of a targeted early literacy and numeracy class which runs an intensive 7-week program for 5 half-days each week, employing additional learning support staff to work with both teachers and students, consolidating employment of Aboriginal Education Workers to support Aboriginal students in their classrooms, and trialling a new class to support Gifted and Talented students.
How Gonski funding has made a difference for students
Not only have students’ grades improved significantly (as measured through pre- and post-standardised tests), their confidence has also developed, resulting in on-going and sustained growth. The Gifted and Talented class has also been a success, with parents reporting a boost in the imagination intelligence and creativity of their participating students. Principal Mark Thomson says: “It is wonderful to have this additional funding to be able to make such a huge life changing difference for these children.”
What Milton Public School could do with Gonski funding in the future
The full Gonski funding would allow Milton PS to build on these early successes, with particular emphasis on expanding the intensive literacy and numeracy program to include senior primary students as a preparation for high school, and building on the success of the trial Gifted and Talented program by making this rich learning opportunity a permanent feature of the school.