In commitment to the core purpose and values of Tara Anglican School for Girls, teaching and learning programs endeavour to provide learning opportunities for all students to achieve their personal best and ‘empower girls to achieve and serve in a dynamic world’. Tara teachers develop and provide differentiated teaching and learning programs to cater for the diverse needs of all students, with additional support and opportunities provided for students with special learning needs, including EAL/D students, and gifted and talented students.
Students with special learning needs are identified throughout the enrolment process and the ongoing monitoring of progress by classroom teachers. Past school reports, consultation with parents, assessment by external providers, and internal assessment and teacher observation provide information for the Deans of Learning, Year Coordinators, and the Learning Support Coordinator to ensure all students’ needs are being met.
The Learning Support Coordinator designs a learning support profile for each student to inform teachers of unique needs of students, provide suggested modifications to teaching and learning programs, and strategies for the classroom.
Modifications to curriculum and Disability Provisions for examinations or assessment tasks will be made for students in line with the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) regulations. These adaptions are made for those students with an intellectual disability or students with learning difficulties which affect the student’s ability to access the curriculum because of a literacy deficiency or disability such as a sensory impairment including but not limited to vision, hearing, physical disability, mental or chronic illness, ADHD, Asperger’s or Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Those experiencing difficulties with literacy identified either on arrival in Tara Senior School or during Year 7 are able to participate in a small literacy class in Year 8. This is taken as an elective for one year only. The emphasis is on developing reading and writing skills necessary for success in secondary school.
Students from Non-English Speaking Backgrounds
Tara has a rich tapestry of students with diverse cultural backgrounds. To service families of non-English speaking background, Tara offers an extensive English as an Additional Language (EAL/D) support program. We aim to provide all EAL/D students at Tara with the support they need to facilitate achievement.
Once identified through the enrolment process, the EAL/D Coordinator assesses the student and her needs. A learner profile is created with summarised evaluations of the initial testing along with general background information, interests and future aspirations. The essential element of the student profile is the strategies designed to assist teachers with adjustments to their classroom instruction. Adjustments to the curriculum, modifications for examinations and/or assessment tasks may also be needed for these students. Casual EAL/D teachers and/or interpreters are also available to provide extra support and can be called upon if needed for students requiring more intensive or specialised intervention.
Gifted and Talented Students
Tara Anglican School for Girls is committed to offering girls an outstanding education, based on best practice and designed to enable students to achieve academic performance which ranks at the highest levels of Junior and Senior Schools. Tara’s depth and breadth of educational opportunities will continue to promote the attainment of each girl’s potential, specified outcomes and the development of girls’ characters and leadership potential.
Tara acknowledges that gifted and talented students are found in all communities regardless of their ethnicity, cultural or socio-economic backgrounds. This also includes students who are underachieving and who have disabilities. To this end, effective, equitable and justifiable identification procedures have been developed to avoid bias and provide appropriate differentiated programs to support the teaching and learning of gifted and talented students. Tara uses Gagné's (2003) Differentiated Model of Giftedness and Talent to assist in identifying Gifted and Talented students drawing upon information provided at enrolment, through internal and external assessment, teacher observations, and parent consultation.
There are a range of strategies employed at Tara to cater for the needs of Gifted and Talented students. These include curriculum compacting, enrichment, grouping students according to ability or performance, extension, and acceleration. Every student is unique, and the strategies employed at Tara by the Enrichment Coordinator, Deans of Learning, Heads of Departments, and teachers are flexible and adaptable to best serve each student in consultation with the student and parents. In particular, differentiation for enrichment and extension is embedded within all teaching and learning programs with faculties providing subject specific opportunities to pursue additional external learning experiences such as National and International challenges and competitions.
Please contact our Head of Senior School for more information regarding Learning Support, EAL/D programs, or Gifted and Talented policies.
Further information regarding support processes and guidelines for students with special learning needs can be found at the following related links for NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) and ACARA: