After surveying students utilizing the “Spirals of Inquiry” back in 2020-2021, the school refocused its goalon Social Emotional Learning and the Core Competency of Social Responsibility and Personal Awareness. Using our school Matrix of “S.T.A.R” behaviour. Safe – Thoughtful-Accepting and Responsible, we created a “S.T.A.R” check-up student survey and have used this consistently over the past few years.
In the spring of 2022, we re-surveyed all students using our S.T.A.R. (SEL) check-up.
Our findings were interesting and provided insightful feedback from our learners. The results confirmed our hunch as to the importance of developing classroom and school wide methods of enhancing and developing community to help our learners feel a sense of belonging and to develop a sense of identity.
Our student survey results indicated:
-a high percentage of students feel safe at school
-a high percentage of students feel adults help them get better at their learning
-a high percentage of students are happy to be at Talmey school
-a significant percentage of students don’t feel they seem themselves and their culture in their learning
-a slight percentage of students feel a need to be more closely connected to people at the school
-a slight percentage of students feel a need to strengthen their learning with core competencies
We recognize over the past few years and in the context of the pandemic, both students and staff haven’t had the same opportunities to connect with and learn from each other. This along with the recently collected student data, has led us to the following inquiry focus:
How might supporting learners social. emotional and personal competencies and working to strengthen their sense of identity and belonging help them grow as learners and as individuals?
In addition, in the spring of 2022, our staff worked in small groups with a teacher consultant and administrator support to reflect on student survey data and recent innovation grant work. After much discussion about where to focus our professional learning, our staff mirrored our student voice:
“How do we help students connect more?”
“We need school-based themes to support connection”
“Student voice and leadership opportunities”
“Themed approach to innovation grants-connecting one grant to another around a topic”
“How do we make people/students feel more welcomed?”
“Creating school community and class community”
“More social and emotional learning”
"Making core competencies more explicit and in school culture and lesson reflections"
"Making core competencies more organic and connected to immediate learning"
"Creating safe and inclusive places"
Feedback from these focus groups was then brought to the whole staff. Following further discussion, we then surveyed our staff to help determine our Professional Development focus area with a goal to align our Pro D work with our school story focus and innovation grant focus areas.
Staff feedback indicated the following focus areas of inquiry and learning:
Main areas of focus:
Social Emotional Learning (including building community/leadership/identity) & Literacy
Complimentary focus areas (Pro D and grant exploration):
Outdoor learning, Learning environments and Spaces, Truth and Reconciliation, Core Competencies
We are in the process of developing alignment between what our students are saying and what our staff are noticing. We will begin the 2022 school year with a focus on social emotional learning. We will be working hard to strengthen our sense of community and belonging and to help students develop a sense of identity.
We did review end of year summative proficiency scaled data for all students in the area of literacy and do see an emerging focus in this area as well. We will be working to align our SEL and literacy work with our complimentary focus areas as indicated above.