Northcote Primary has a range of programs to support a range of needs in the school community, with the aim of establishing a positive learning environment.
Prep to Year 6 student representatives are elected by their peers to Junior School Council and meet regularly to discuss and problem-solve school issues that are important to them.
Students are routinely asked to provide constructive feedback to each other and staff on a range of issues from improving learning to who gets to play on the turf!
We value and promote leadership activities that are meaningful and that carry a level of responsibility for students. All learning areas provide opportunities for students to play a key role in caring for and maintaining the learning ‘neighbourhood’.
The Year 5-6 Buddy Program provides essential ‘transition to school’ support for our new preps and develops a sense of pride and responsibility in our senior students.
Prep to Year 6 student representatives are elected by their peers to the Junior School Council, which meets regularly to discuss, and participate in decision-making on, issues that affect them.
All students undertake tasks at home each week. Generally, home learning tasks relate to the skills, processes and understandings that are the current learning focus at school and are developmentally appropriate. They do not require new learning; students are required to practise skills learnt in class.
Home learning complements and reinforces classroom learning, fosters good lifelong study habits, and provides an opportunity for students to further develop responsibility for their own learning.
The move from kindergarten to primary school and then primary to secondary school creates big changes in a child’s life, development and education. We believe a positive transition provides a smooth start to learning, and social and emotional wellbeing.
All parents and children starting prep the following year, attend our Ready, Set, Go! Program in November and December. This is a valuable opportunity to become familiar with the school environment, meet some of our teachers, and possible classmates for the following year. The program consists of three morning sessions and includes concurrent information sessions for parents.
The school implements three transition programs across the school to address the transitional needs of our students: Kinder to Prep (Ready, Set, Go!); Year 6 to Year 7; and an intra-transition program from Prep to Year 5.
The intra-transition program supports students moving from one year level to the next and operates over a few weeks at the end of each year. Teachers plan and implement a positive program that focuses on inclusion and engagement. For the move from primary to secondary school, our Year 6 teachers and Year 6–7 transition coordinator prepare students throughout their final year. Past students visit our school and lead discussions around expectations and strategies for adjusting to the change. We have strong links with Northcote High School and our students are involved in inter- school learning and activities wherever possible.
We ensure all parents have full knowledge of the process involved and are guided by the Year 6–7 transition coordinator.
Our engagement and wellbeing approach is based on the following principles: the right to learn, the right to be respected, and the right to be safe. We also teach students about responsibilities—personal responsibility (I do the right thing), and communal responsibility (I encourage others to do the right thing).
All students have weekly sessions in building social and resilience skills through the Bounce Back Program (Dr Helen McGrath), the implementation of the developmental approach to classroom behavior (Associate Professor Ramon Lewis).