Showing the way forward

Helping hands: External expertise helped to make the "Engineers without Borders" program a great success. Photo: Supplied.
Helping hands: External expertise helped to make the "Engineers without Borders" program a great success. Photo: Supplied.

Trangie Central School (TCS) constantly demonstrates leadership in change and innovation. In 2016 we were recognised for our innovation in school improvement, using the power of the Creative and Performing Arts. This was used to develop self-esteem and enhance learning outcomes on the basis that if a student can find success in one endeavour, then they will have the confidence to succeed elsewhere. We also believed that both staff and student well-being were equally essential to develop both resilience and quality teaching and learning. Now, in 2019, we have once again been selected for The Educator Innovative Schools.

Coming from a small, rural environment our students lacked confidence in using technology as well as in technological and innovative thinking. We therefore developed programs and strategies that exposed students to "real-world" situations and projects which would allow them to not only be competitive, but prepare for lifelong learning and careers in the workforce. We started with small beginnings and built up to a grand finale.

Honour: Trangie Central School was one of only three schools in Australia to present at the Telstra Vantage Conference. Photo: Supplied.

Honour: Trangie Central School was one of only three schools in Australia to present at the Telstra Vantage Conference. Photo: Supplied.

First came our Middle School STEM program for Years 5 to 8 that aimed to develop 21st Century pedagogy for both staff and students. This focused on the core skills of problem solving, critical thinking and collaboration, through group work, experiential and project based learning, and to be centered on our local area. The "Engineers without Borders" brought external expertise, giving feedback in relation to students' projects and presentation skills whilst simultaneously collaborating and upskilling staff.

Next we took part in the ACARA Digital Technologies in Focus project, aiming to develop the technology skills of staff, supporting sustainable practices in digital technology integration and implementation.

Make a difference: The "Young Change Agents" program allowed students to identify and develop solutions for community issues. Photo: Supplied.

Make a difference: The "Young Change Agents" program allowed students to identify and develop solutions for community issues. Photo: Supplied.

Our success in securing a Makers Grant funded three 3D printers, energised and motivated our students and showed them what can be done with design and creation. Our Digital Technology Interest Group enables students to experiment with Scratch, Cubetto and EV3, helping to develop their programming and problem solving skills.

Team work: Trangie Central School students and staff have a proud history of working together to achieve outstanding results. Photo: Supplied.

Team work: Trangie Central School students and staff have a proud history of working together to achieve outstanding results. Photo: Supplied.

The Young Change Agents Program which followed brought skill sets from Sydney and Melbourne to Trangie. Forty TCS students spent three days working in teams to identify and develop solutions for issues in our own community. There was huge excitement when two teams were invited to make their pitches at the Telstra Vantage Conference in Melbourne to over 400 people where TCS was one of only three schools in Australia to present at the conference.

Once upon a time our students were heard to say 'we can't do that, we're only Trangie'. Now they say "we are capable of anything because we're Trangie". Nothing is ever too ambitious for TCS and we forever "box above our weight".

  • Editorial Supplied
SHARE