Assistant Principals Report

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Angela Lane

Every Minute Matters

Early in the year I wrote about how attendance is one of the key major indicators for success at school and later in adulthood. Studies have strongly shown that young people who attend school more frequently have better outcomes after school – they earn more money, have better job prospects, are less likely to misuse drugs and alcohol and are generally healthier.

There is no doubt that COVID lockdowns have made things more difficult for families. As parents/carers you are running your house, looking after your family and trying to make sure your child is online for classes as well.

But it is more important than ever that every student is attending every minute of their classes.

Students are building habits that they will take into adulthood through attending school regularly. They come to school to learn more than numeracy and literacy – they are learning all sorts of skills like working in teams, meeting deadlines, strengthening work habits that will help them when they are an adult.

COVID is changing how we interact on a business level and tertiary level education – with more communication than ever being about managing emails, online meetings, working remotely, working with more flexible hours, and online professional development/learning.

So How Can You Support Attendance During Learning From Home?

Being on time means being early: my father always said that it was better to be an hour early, than one minute late. When a class starts at 9am it means that all students should be logged on by 8:59am at the latest. Being on time shows commitment, respect and allows for a greater connection with the online classroom space. Come in part way through an instruction

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Great attendance is helped by taking actual breaks: The brain is more ready to learn once it has had a real break. If your child has spent the past 90 minutes in front of a screen, make sure they get outside for at least 15 minutes. Make sure they spend their recess and lunch breaks off screens. They will be happier, healthier and more ready to learn when it is time to go back to the desk.

Routine, routine, routine. The learning from home timetable is designed to help home create routine. Most classes are put in the first session of the day to encourage students to get up at the same time each day. To know what they have ahead. Routine gives predictability, predictability gives calmness, calmness leads to healthier and happier students.

Check in on what they are doing. Attendance is not just about showing up. It is also about engagement. Attendance is not about being in the online classroom space, but playing computer games on another tab. Make sure you check in with your child regularly. Get them to explain what task they are working on and what they have learnt so far.

As always, if you have concerns about your child please call the College on 8339 8000. We will support you.

Don’t let this lockdown become a reason for non-attendance. Every minute matters.

How Can You Check What Your attendance Is?

The first way to check is via Compass. Clicking on the ‘Profile’ and then the ‘Attendance Tab’.

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When you scroll down you can see each subject. The important place to look is at the last three columns:

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