Courses support syllabus implementation

Kathy Deacon
Centre for Professional Learning

So far in term 1, the Centre for Professional Learning (CPL) has conducted a range of courses to support the implementation of the NSW English Syllabus for the Australian Curriculum, help teachers navigate the new NSW Mathematics K–6 and 7–10 Syllabuses, and provide an understanding of the new 7-10 History Syllabus and enhance the quality of history teaching.

As well, the Teaching Students with Special Needs in Mainstream Classes course was attended by 70 teachers from primary and secondary schools, from Schools for Specific Purposes and Intensive English Centres.

Demand for the courses resulted in maximum participant numbers with some courses exceeding the available space.

Teachers attending the Teaching Students with Special Needs in Mainstream Classes course in term 1 commented:

  • “The most valuable session was when we broke into primary and secondary groups. The discussion about learning adjustments was most useful, as was the session about supporting students with challenging behaviours.”
  • “I found the information about the Disabilities Legislation to be worthwhile. It has helped to give purpose to what I am doing in my class and school. I was impressed that there were multiple presenters from both primary and secondary schools to assist me.”
  • “All aspects of the course were useful. I really found the way the topics were covered supported my learning and gave me time to grasp every component. The networking with other teachers was very useful.”
  • “I will walk away from today with an amazing toolkit of practical suggestions to use in the classroom. It was a thoroughly prepared course. I enjoyed the real-life scenarios.”
  • “Thank you for the USB drive of wonderful resources.”

The remainder of the CPL courses to be offered in term 1 are attracting many applications with the Lifting Achievement in Years 7–12 course being held in Surry Hills on March 20.

This course will focus on developing approaches to improve student performance in public high schools. Experienced teachers and an academic will share demonstrated, successful strategies and ideas for lifting achievement levels.

The course will focus on what individual teachers can do, what faculties can do and what whole school approaches are most successful. The Early Career Teachers course to be held on March 31 in Surry Hills is also proving to be popular with our members.

This year’s major English Conference, to be held on March 27, is on “English in Years 9–12 Teaching Shakespeare, Poetry and Drama”, for all involved in teaching English in Years 9–12.

There will be an exploration of the different ways to meet the challenges often associated with engaging our students with Shakespeare, poetry and drama. Every conference participant will receive a substantial package of digital (on USB) and printed material. This event has attracted applications from secondary and central schools from across the state and will be held in the Federation Auditorium. In term 2, the CPL will offer courses at venues in Surry Hills, Blacktown and in the Hunter.

All members are advised to apply as soon as they can for any CPL event. The easiest way to locate all information and to make an application is to visit the CPL website. CPL activities are only open to financial members of the union and scores of teachers have joined or upgraded their union membership in order to be eligible to apply to attend courses and conferences.

The semester 2 program is expanding significantly, with an increase in the number of CPL courses to be offered in Blacktown, the Hunter and Parkes. Other regional venues are being investigated. Discussions are also continuing with universities and online experts to develop professional learning opportunities for teachers in regional and remote areas of the state.