​Runcorn State High School

Location: Runcorn – Brisbane, QLD

Runcorn State High School, a comprehensive secondary school in Brisbane’s South, has an enrolment of 757 students. The student population is very diverse with over half the students coming from an EALD background (61 countries), 6% indigenous, 7% students with a disability.

How Runcorn State High School has used Gonski funding

Over a two-year period, the school restructured to create three sub-schools: Junior, Transition and Senior, each with a Deputy Principal, Head of Department and a new position Officer of Welfare and Learning (OWL). Each team is responsible for monitoring the learning progress of each student focussing on student well-being. The school joined the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme and have committed to 95% students receiving an award across Yrs 7-10.

The Special Education Program moved to adopt co-teaching as the inclusion model to support verified students and Gonski funding was also used to extend this model to support other students such as students with gifts and talents and learning difficulties.

Finally, the school embarked on a teacher professional development program, initially focussing on age-appropriate pedagogies and then extending to the explicit teaching of writing and reading. All school leaders have been trained as coaches to assist teachers to improve their practice in a supportive, collegial manner.

How Gonski funding has made a difference for students

In just over three years a more positive learning environment for all students has been developed. School disciplinary absences have significantly decreased in both suspensions and exclusions. Over the same time positive behaviour acknowledgements have increased ten-fold.

In Junior, A-C data increased 21% in Maths, English and Science. NAPLAN relative gain has improved. In the Transition, A-C data has increased 10-15%. In Senior, the QCE data has steadily increased and in 2016, 100% of students received a QCE. From 2015, all indigenous students have achieved a QCE. Alongside these data sets, student and parent satisfaction levels continue to be very high.

What Runcorn State High School could do with Gonski funding in the future

Continued funding will allow for the school to continue to develop personalised learning plans for all students and align teacher and student learning goals, strategies for improvement and parent engagement in the learning process. It will also allow the school to continue to be responsive to individual student’s needs through the co-teacher model.

Teacher capability to explicitly teach writing and reading will be enhanced through the
Reading to Learn program and coaching for school leaders and aspiring leaders will be extended to peer coaching.

Investigation and trial of the “Genius Hour” for senior students to increase engagement while exploring future career pathways.

Duke of Edinburgh Award Program so all students in Years 7-10 can gain at least a Bronze Award.

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