Intervention & Enrichment Programs
Sacred Heart has long been acclaimed for its exemplary approach to supporting children who have additional learning needs.
Response to Intervention (RTI)
At Sacred Heart, Learning Support is based on the Response to Intervention (RtI) framework and the terms are used interchangeably. Through RtI, we consistently use data to identify students at risk of poor learning outcomes, monitor progress, provide research-based interventions and adjust the intensity and nature of these interventions depending on student response. This enables us to identify and provide for the needs of all students.
We allocate significant school resources to Learning Support, and staff this area of the school with experienced educators who are committed to enhancing the learning and well being of our students.
These teachers lead a team of Learning Support Officers (LSOs), have a dedicated work area and liaise closely with classroom teachers, other staff and families. The overall role of the Learning Support Team is to provide additional school-wide time and support to ensure all students achieve academic and behavioural success and learn at high levels.
Sacred Heart has available for use a variety of researched and evidenced based intervention programs. The Learning Support Team are trained to implement these and they include academic, social/emotional and special interest interventions and programs.
We recognise that children who are gifted and/or talented may also be at risk and also require special provisions. We meet these needs in a variety of ways. The Catholic Education Office in each diocese offers educational consultancy and access to resources which assist schools to identify gifted students and make appropriate programming modifications.
Students with a diagnosed learning disorder or disability may be funded under the Students with Disabilities (SWD) scheme. To apply for funding an annual application outlining the student’s particular needs is submitted to Melbourne Catholic Education Office. Termly Program Support Group (PSG) meetings are required for all students deemed eligible for SWD funding. Meetings can also be held for students who are experiencing learning difficulties, but may not necessarily be eligible for funding. Personalised Learning Plans, Behaviour Support Plans and Student Management Plans are developed to ensure the learning of students is targeted to their particular area of need.
Prep: On separate occasions, children have dinner and breakfast at school. Breakfast usually occurs in Term 2. The children arrive at school at 7am and enjoy a variety of breakfast foods, followed by a day of fun activities. In Term 4 the Preps stay at school until 7pm. We have afternoon tea, lots of games and activities and finish with a sausage sizzle and ice cream.
Year One:The children have the experience of staying at school for an extended period of time. This day is known as the Year One Stayback and is held at school on a Friday in Term 3. The children participate in a fun filled day of activities, and go on an excursion in the afternoon, (eg.Mildura Waves), after this excursion, the children return to school and continue to enjoy after school games, a treasure hunt and a dinner of pizza and icecream with their friends and teachers. After tea, the children nestle down with their teddies and pillows in the library for a movie session. By 9pm the children are very tired after their super exciting fun filled day and are ready to be picked up by their parents.
Year Two: The Year Two students experience an overnight stay (Friday) at school, normally during term four, known as the Year Two Sleepover. The day begins at school with lots of planned activities including tabloid sports, board games, a trip to Mildura Tenpin Bowl, dinner at school, a movie and loads of other fun experiences. After sleeping the night in the stadium, the children have breakfast at school before being picked up by their parents.
Year Three: Year Three students spend two days/one night in Swan Hill at the Pioneer Settlement staying in the lodges adjacent. On the way to Swan Hill the students stop at Hattah-Kulkyne National Park where they learn about and explore the local fauna and vegetation. On arrival in Swan Hill the children participate in a number of different pioneering activities. That night they are treated to a sound and light spectacular as they experience ’The Heartbeat of The Murray’. The following day sees the children engage in indigenous culture activities and have fun exploring the settlement. This new experience for the students helps them to make links with the current History unit in Term 3 – Our Local History.
Year Four: Year four students get to bring out their adventurous sides as they travel close to home and spend three days/two nights at Lake Cullulleraine. The experts from Wildside Outdoors guide the children through team building and fun outdoor activities such as canoeing, bike riding, archery, early morning exercise sessions plus many more activities.
Year Five: Year five students spend three days/two nights in Ballarat at the Sovereign Hill Barracks. They visit the Museum of Democracy at Eureka, the Ballarat Art Gallery, St Patrick’s Cathedral (depending on availability) and spend an entire day exploring Sovereign Hill itself. This camp is held in Term 4, following the Term 3 unit studying the Eureka Stockade and the Gold rush of the 1850’s.
Year Six: Year six students spend four nights/five days in our State Capital, Melbourne. They visit a range of sites and many of the activities are specifically linked to the curriculum areas they study. Although activities may vary from year to year, they regularly visit Parliament House following their Term One unit about Government, the Immigration Museum prior to studying the Year 6 Immigration unit in Term Three and Science Works linking into our Science topics. Students also have the opportunity to experience city walks, galleries, restaurants, tours of sporting facilities such as the MCG, markets and the beach. The camp is usually held early in Term Two.
Our Buddy program begins in Term 4 each year, as children in Year 5 are matched to a child enrolled for Prep of the following year. Year 5 children write letters to their Buddy that are delivered over the Term 3 holidays and then during Term 4 they visit the child’s kinder/day care venue. When the new Prep visits the school for orientation sessions, their Buddy is there to help with the transition to school. We host a BBQ for the Buddy families to meet each other, usually in late November. At the start of the new school year, the now Year 6 Buddy greets their Prep Buddy each morning and spends time helping them settle into school. Throughout the year, various other Buddy activities occur, culminating in a ‘Buddy Mass’. The relationships between buddies and their families are highly valued, extremely supportive and often continue into secondary school and beyond.