Portland Secondary College’s vision is to develop creative, articulate, respectful and resourceful young people able to contribute positively to the global community. Through Student Leadership, Voice and Agency, the College is committed to empowering students to take ownership of their learning, understand and contribute to the development of learning goals, feel confident to make contributions to their learning environments and monitor their own learning and improvement. Student Leadership, Voice and Agency represent different aspects of student empowerment where each is important, interrelated and mutually reinforcing.
Student Leadership involves students representing their peers to examine, advocate and change how the school operates to change and improve outcomes for all students and teachers. Student leaders have an increased sense of responsibility to help others and to model leadership principles and values.
Student Voice is giving students the opportunity to communicate ideas and opinions and students having the power to influence change. Authentic student voice provides opportunities for students to collaborate and make decisions with adults around what and how they learn and how their learning is assessed.
Student Agency is intrinsically linked to Student Voice and gives students the power to direct and take responsibility for their learning creating independent and self-regulating engaged learners.
Student Leaders are challenged to set high expectations for themselves, to feel motivated and empowered, to have a growth mindset regarding building their acknowledge and skills through effort and hard work, to be confident and speak up for all students, to contribute effectively to school decision making and to contribute positively to the school and local community and to the world around them.
At Portland Secondary College we support Student Leadership by providing opportunities for students to advocate for their peers through the Student Representative Council, Year Level Leaders, the School for Student leadership, Peer Support program, Music Captains, Sport Captains, Senior School Student Improvement Team, Junior School Leadership Team, Future Leaders of Industry, Advance, Live4Life, School Council and Mentor Captains. Student Leaders run assemblies, complete student projects, run activities and forums and organise staff and student challenges as well as represent the College out in the wider community.
Students have unique perspectives on learning, teaching and schooling and should have the opportunity to actively shape their own education. Student voice includes student contributing to decision making processes and collectively influencing outcomes by putting forward their views, concerns and ideas and actively participating in their school community and the education system. Student Voice Challenges students to listen to and learn from peers and staff, to ask questions to strengthen their understanding, to share ideas and opinions, to actively seek and give feedback from and to teachers and peers, to negotiate learning goals and assessment and to feel confident to contribute to school improvement in meaningful ways.
At Portland Secondary College we support Student Voice by providing opportunities for students to provide feedback to teachers through the Attitude to School Survey, PIVOT surveys, classroom surveys, exit tickets, parent/teacher/student interviews, student feedback forums, major projects, individual feedback discussions, VCAL Personal Development Projects and discussions between students and staff to diagnose and inform practice improvement. Student Voice is supported by the use of various types of data to ensure teaching and learning programs are reflecting students’ choices, abilities and input.
Student Agency refers to the level of autonomy and power that a student experiences in the learning environment and provides students with the opportunity to take responsibility for their learning. Student Agency challenges students to work with teachers in making decisions about teaching and learning, to take responsibility for their own learning, to be independent, reflective and self-regulating learners and to contribute ideas and be involved in designing and implementing policy and programs.
At Portland Secondary College we support student agency through student goal setting, Individual learning Plans, Student contribution to Policy development, students completing Merit and Equity Training and serving on Staff Selection panels, Workplace Visits, negotiated curriculum and assessment and involvement in Department of Education forums and conferences.