A Personalised Education
De La Salle College is a caring, Catholic community with a focus on personalised learning and achievement. Every student is given the challenge and support he needs to excel both in the classroom and beyond.
We understand that every student learns differently and are committed to providing a variety of pathways. Individualised learning is facilitated for students right from Year 4, all the way through to their completion of secondary schooling. In the primary school years, student progression is monitored closely so that in-class support or extension can be provided as needed, either by their class teacher or a specialist staff member.
Transition into our College, whether that be at Year 4, Year 7 or another year level, is a key stage in the personalisation process, with all available information about a student’s strengths and areas for improvement helping our staff create an individual learning plan for them. As an open entry school, we only use a student’s academic history to build this plan for them – not to determine entry to our College.
Our dedicated Student Progression Coordinators track individual student progress, allowing for early identification of any issues that may arise, and our Learning and Teaching and Pastoral Care Teams are committed to helping students achieve their academic, co-curricula and spiritual goals.
At Years 7 and 8 students are able to take part in our Maths Pathways program, an innovative personalised learning program designed to allow students to progress in mathematics as part of their usual class, but at their own pace. This means for example that students who are achieving at a high level can move faster through the content and do extra or more advanced work, supported by their teacher. Essentially, the content of each class is tailor made to each students’ ability level, with the aim of challenging each student in a way that is appropriate to them. For students who experience ongoing difficulties extra numeracy help is available, as is literacy help.
In Years 7 to 9 students can participate in our Immersion Program, designed to enable learning which is outside the boundaries of traditional subject based learning or 54 minute timetabled classes. Students are able to engage in 6 to 8 week programs that emphasise a substantial investigation of an area, putting skill development to the fore. Available subjects range from Active Citizenship and Crime and Punishment, to E=MC2, where students are challenged to exercise their problem solving and logical reasoning skills, to Take Off!, where students plan some travel within set parameters and explore geography, different cultures, creating budgets and working to timelines. This wide range of options allows students to choose subjects that are of interest to them and suit their own learning abilities.
At Year 10 our curriculum expands, with over 45 subject choices on offer to students. This enables students entering their first year of senior school to choose more specialised subjects that are relevant to their tertiary interest and to tailor their senior study pathway. Progression and Careers staff are of critical importance at this time, assisting students to select subjects that are essential for their chosen tertiary course (if they have one) or that will set them up for a successful VCE. Some of the specialist subjects on offer include Architecture, Media – Inside the Newsroom, Spit it Out (linguistics, public speaking and debating), Making and Breaking the Law, and Prices, Markets & Finances. Students also have the opportunity to begin their VCE in Year 10 with one VCE subject and students who have been performing strongly in a particular area will be encouraged to do this.
This approach to learning and teaching in Year 10 empowers students to take control of their learning and provides a smooth transition to the choice, challenge and rigour of Year 11. In addition to VCE, we also offer a VCE/VET (Vocational Education and Training) pathway as well as a VCAL (Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning) pathway. VET and VCAL provide opportunities for students to finish Year 12 and move straight into full time work and are suitable options for students who would like to work in a trade or have strong skills in vocations like hospitality or sport and recreation. Through our VCAL course there is a continued focus on improving literacy and numeracy skills while gaining practical work related skills.
Students studying VCE, VET or VCAL have access to specialty staff who are experts in their areas, as well as a modern curriculum which will not only help students achieve their best in VCE, but set them up to be contributing members of society. We expect all of our students to leave school with the skills, and confidence in themselves, to problem solve, think critically and contribute their knowledge and ideas to the workforce.
Importantly, our ongoing emphasis across all the year levels is for students to achieve their personal best. This is different for every student, but it is critical that each young man identifies and continues to work towards goals he has set with his parents and teachers. We encourage every student to find his strengths and be passionate about something, and we work with students to help them understand how they can lead change in their chosen areas of interest.
To gain an in-depth understanding of our curriculum we encourage you to read our Curriculum Handbook, available here.
To read about the wide range of co-curricula opportunities available to students, please click here.