Inclusive Curriculum and Enrichment
The belief that each person is created in the image of God leads us to respect the dignity and value of all. Therefore Catholic Education is challenged to provide opportunities that enable each person to grow to “full stature in Christ” (Eph 4:13)
Inclusive practice reflects these beliefs and is integral to the ethos of a Catholic school. Inclusive practice is not restricted to a particular group of learners or pedagogy but refers to all in our school community. This ensures that maximum quality learning opportunities are accessible to all learners.
Emmaus College actively and systematically promotes inclusive practice by:
- Identifying and removing barriers to inclusiveness in policies, structures and attitudes
- Providing a curriculum that strives to educate the whole person and meet the needs of each individual
- Assisting all learners to grow to their full potential
- Recognising and celebrating a broad range of achievements and efforts
- Offering a flexible, safe, enjoyable, and challenging learning environment
- Promoting a collaborative approach to meeting the needs of learners.
A large number of students across a variety of need fall are supported by the Inclusive Curriculum and Enrichment Department. These include:
- Students with a verified disability such as Speech Language Impairment, Physical impairment, ASD, Social and Emotional Disorders
- Students with non-verified learning difficulties, particularly in Literacy and Numeracy
- Students in the Care of the State
- Students with English as a Second Language or Dialect
- Students with extension learning needs
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island students
Targeted Programs & Funding
The programs which generate support funding are EAP and EAL/D (ESL).
The school has between 75-80 EAP students with quite a large number of students going through the verification process at any one time. For example around 20 in year 7 and a similar number in Year 8. Not all of these students will fall into an official disability classification and some will need to be assessed from year to year, as they drop further behind their peers they often then qualify for verification with regard to a disability.
These students generate funding according to the established and verified level of disability ranging from E0, which generates no funding, to E5, which presently generates up to $16,500 per student.
There are around 180-200 students classified as Learning Difficulty and these students are subject to extensive monitoring, assessment and support but receive no funding.
Similarly, funding is received for EAL/D (ESL) students according to their level of English acquisition, which is measured against the Queensland Bandscales. This ranges from Level A which indicates a very low level of English to Level D which indicates around a Year 9 standard of English in writing, reading, speaking and listening. Students at a D level receive no direct funding however ESL support is still provided in a regular weekly tutorial format. Presently an A Level student (Lowest) generates $3,680 funding and $920 for a C level student. Mostly this funding is invested in human resources facilitating direct support time.
Funding is also received for the support of Students in Care and there is a funded Indigenous Liaison Officer (Sarah Kane) and a funded Indigenous Teacher Aide, (Ian Fatnowna).
(All ICE teachers also have a teaching commitment)
Angela Maclaine – Inclusive Education and Enrichment Coordinator also Senior ESL OP teacher for Years 11 and 12
William Oates – Monitors Year 10
Tina Wall – Monitors Years 11 and 12
Lisa Durkin – Monitors Year 9, Numeracy Intervention Program
Clare Lynam – Monitors Year 8, Literacy Intervention Program
Aleysha Ferlazzo – Monitors year 7, Literacy Intervention Program
Alisa Thwaite – EAL/D, Numeracy Intervention Program
Jessica Lawless-Pyne – Teacher Assistant Co-ordinator
Peta Loram – Administration Support
There are approximately seven Teacher Assistants spread throughout both the junior and secondary campuses each lesson. These TA’s have regular training in facilitating learning for EAP and LD students and work in partnership with classroom teachers.
A timetable is collated for Teacher Assistance each fortnight taking into account the following (Example Included):
- Needs of funded EAP students focussing on Literacy and Numeracy as a priority
- Students with Learning Difficulties, especially those in the process of verification
- Special intervention Literacy and Numeracy classes where extra staff is required for intensive intervention and to support the Differentiated Rotation Program which addresses learning needs such as Speech Language, Working Memory and Basic Literacy and Numeracy through specialised programs such as The Fitzroy Reader, CogMed, Verbalisation and Visualisation Program
- Assessment and Examinations where students are withdrawn as part of their IEP to facilitate the best opportunity for maximum performance
- Students working alone or in a small group on a supervised and supported Study Line
- Neale Testing – to establish reading and comprehension levels (Most TAs have been trained in this)
- Specific requests from teachers, particularly in practical subject areas where there are safety issues
- Record keeping – TAs electronically record all assistance given to EAP and LD students. This information is essential to updating and generating verification and moderation paperwork which is required for each student throughout the year
- Excursions where students on the ICE list, particularly EAP students, require extra supervision
- Special Programs such as Zuu, which addresses learning needs of students who are disconnected with regard to learning or on the ASD spectrum.
Processes for identifying and reviewing students with specific learning needs
- The processes begin with initial transition in Year 7
- Information for Primary students already verified in Catholic Education is passed on by the school and the Regional Coordinator
- Students with a verification have the ICE Coordinator and Regional Coordinator on their interview panel so a specific support plan can be developed prior to the student attending high school. This is for students coming from both Catholic and State Primary schools
- Several transition days are conducted for students with verifications or students with identified Learning Difficulty
- Information is collected for students coming from the State system through the previous school and parents
- Anecdotal information is shared directly at meetings between the different Primary schools and Emmaus. Support plans are developed further with this information and they are hyperlinked to the particular student’s name on an Excel spreadsheet for the information of staff. These notes include both specific and generic information relating to the particular child, how they best learn and which teaching strategies and behavioural strategies have been found to be the most affective.
- Every verified student has an Individual Education Plan which details strengths and challenges. This document is reviewed and updated each year in liaison with the parent and is signed off by the parent, principal and ICE coordinator.
- Each verified student has an established process of monitoring which involves formal assessment and review of their disability according to the requirements established by the verifier. This is supported by processes of moderation involving extensive student profiling, data collection and report writing. These documents are mandated and the templates are provided by the DCEO.
- Students requiring support are further highlighted by academic performance and to a certain extent behaviour and engagement. Classroom teachers also refer students they are concerned about.
- Identification and referral generates testing – initially this will be through:
- Neale testing for Reading Age and Comprehension (Teachers and TAs trained)
- Fitzroy placement test which indicates the student’s academic year level
- Dyslexia Screener which indicates whether or not the student has dyslexia (Teachers and TAs trained)
- CogMed (Teachers and TAs in training presently)
- Probe 2 (New literacy assessment program designed to assess value added post intervention and to facilitate placement and modified program access)
- Data is ratified further through NAPLAN results and the CAT (Cognitive Assessment Test) taken by all students in the school.
- Students of concern are then taken through formal screening:
- WISC testing for cognitive data – psychologist
- CELF 4 testing for speech language impairment – speech therapist
- SED diagnosis (Including high level anxiety) through psychiatric or paediatrician assessment and report
- WIAT-II (Dyslexia diagnosis) through psychologist
Specialists make a formal assessment and report – based on this report a verification application is developed and sent through DCEO. This process can take many months of tracking, assessment and associated paperwork, which is also subject to regular audit.
- Initially a newly verified student will receive seed funding, which is reviewed subsequent to a moderation process a short while later. Verification and moderation processes are repeated regularly according to recommendations and requirements of specialists and verifiers.
- The Moderation process involves the development of a Student Profile. This is often when we are asking for staff input with regard to how the student is travelling in a particular subject and what modifications/adjustments are being implemented to facilitate their curriculum access. The level of funding support is determined externally in direct response to the amount of support, including curriculum adjustment, so the less the information given from staff the less justification for intervention and the less funding received. Theoretically, this reduces the amount of support available.
- Intervention occurs through extensive classroom support of highlighted students by both ICE teachers and trained Teacher Assistants.
- ICE teachers work extensively with classroom teachers in developing appropriately adjusted or modified curriculum to meet the learning needs of a wide range of student clients.
- Students with high level need are organised with a study line where they are withdrawn from one curriculum subject for extra one on one literacy/numeracy support and support with assignments.
- Literacy and Numeracy intervention classes in years 7 and 8 have been established in place of mainstream English and maths for students with significant literacy and numeracy delays. A phonic approach to literacy is employed through the use of the Fitzroy Reader Program and is supplemented by the Nelson Literacy Directions, the Intensive Reading Program and the text, Special Educational Resources for Teachers – English years 7 – 9. These classes are equipped with 2 teachers and two teacher assistants which gives a ratio of roughly 5 or 6 students to one literacy trained teacher/TA. Activities are differentiated to meet a variety of learning styles and students rotate through 3 or 4 activities in a double period.
- A working memory intervention program is presently being implemented, CogMed. ICE teachers and TAs are trained in this program online.
- A sensory classroom has been established to help study skills for students on the ASD spectrum and those with sensory needs. Specially designed furniture is included in this classroom environment, which is specifically selected to support the Rotation Program in Years 7 and 8.
- A tutorial program is in operation during Tute, MPL and after school every week for both junior and senior students and including ESL. These tutorials are run by ICE staff and are well attended and supported by parents. Students can self-refer and often do.
- A number of special intervention programs run throughout the year usually in association with school counsellors and external providers such as Headspace :
- Boy’s Group (Zuu) – designed to help develop appropriate interactive behaviours for junior school boys
- Girl’s Group – friendship, self- care
- Rock and Water
- Verbalisation and Visualisation (Speech Language Program)
- Year 7 Intervention Literacy and Numeracy Programs
- Year 8 Intervention Literacy and Numeracy Programs
- Year 9 Literacy and Numeracy Support Programs
- Years 7, 8 and 9 ESL English Program
- Years 11 and 12 ESL (Board Subject)
- Boys Group, Junior
- Girls Group, Junior
- CogMed Junior Program
- CogMed ESL Program
- Verbalisation and Visualisation Program
General Inclusive Curriculum and Enrichment Support
Apart from paperwork associated with formal verification and moderation, much ICE time is spent in the area of emotional and behavioural support for EAP students, Students in Care and LD students on a day to day basis. This involves extensive support with organisation and curriculum access for a large number of students. The following strategies are implemented:
- Colour coordinated and laminated timetables for lockers, home and pockets
- Coloured folders aligned to timetable colours
- Individual student mentorship, including one on one withdrawal
- Liaison with parents over uniforms, lunches, sensory equipment such as headphones and ear plugs, microphones and specialist intervention and assessment
- Provision of fidget toys and stress management resources
- Development of modified and adjusted curriculum (Differentiation)
- Staff support and mentorship in the development of student specific modified and adjusted curriculum (Differentiation)
- Development of modified and adjusted assessment
- Distribution throughout the teaching body of materials specific to the teaching and learning of students with particular disabilities, Students with learning disabilities, ESL students and students in Care
- Development of QCIAA portfolios for senior students
- Vocational support for senior students.
All team members pursue professional development opportunities in order to keep the team across cutting- edge developments in the specific areas of responsibility. This includes cross- departmental initiatives and meetings with the Departments of Education, Health and Child Safety. The team regularly presents information and training sessions at a diverse range of events such as:
- Staff meetings
- DCEO meetings
We have a strong commitment to innovation and aspiration underpinned by ongoing professional learning.
Head of Inclusive Curriculum and Enrichment