The Academic Support Department strives to assist and support pupils who have academic needs within the realm of our academic curriculum. We create a nurturing environment that creates opportunities for our pupils to perform on par with their peers. We are located upstairs in the library of the Learning Resource Centre. The Department comprises five staff members who work interactively to serve the needs of our pupils.
The Academic Support Department assists the College in assessing new pupils by providing relevant, skills-based assessments in English and Mathematics. These baseline assessments are designed to give the principal an indication of the pupils’ ability to interact with language and numbers. The assessment process is supported by a “meet-and-greet” whereby a small team of staff interview the prospective pupil in a non-formal environment. The Placement Tests are conducted after the interview and assessed in conjunction with the pupils’ current academic results. A recommendation for support will be made if deemed necessary.
The Academic Support Department endeavours to meet and serve the needs of pupils who require additional support in English and Mathematics in Grade 8 and 9. The purpose of the programme is to develop and strengthen existing skills so that pupils can manage the curriculum independently. The Development Programme does not offer remediation or one-on-one lessons. It operates on an invitational basis only whereby pupils are referred by staff members; pupils who are struggling or underperforming are invited to participate in the programme if merit is warranted and space is available. The Development Programme is considered specialised education and therefore, carries an additional termly fee. The Finance Department debits the school accounts directly.
English and Maths Development classes are taught separately by the Development teachers during the timetabled subject lessons. The Development Programme follows the academic curriculum and pupils complete all tasks and assessments as that of the mainstream pupils. The classes are taught in smaller capacities and comprise a maximum of 10 pupils. All of the Development classes are created through a combination of classes and therefore, three Development classes are offered per grade per subject. Extra lessons are also offered in the afternoons. Pupils are released from the programme if (a) their behaviour is disruptive to the learning process; (b) they have surpassed the baseline requirement for the programme (55%). Regular contact is made with parents via email and individual parent interviews are conducted if necessary.
The Academic Support Department runs an extensive accommodations programme that supports pupils from Grade 8-12 who have academic learning barriers. The Accommodations Programme focuses on academic accommodations, academic exemptions (Maths and First Additional Language) and immigrant status. The policy is custom-designed for the College and caters for a large variety of learning needs. The Accommodations Programme is supported by a corps of external invigilators who assist with separate venues and reading/scribing. The Accommodations Programme is inclusive of the Standardised Test Programme and the Examinations. Detailed information can be provided upon request with regards to the specific portfolio policy documents.
The Academic Support Department offers a variety of activities to enrich the learning experiences of pupils in the College. Both group and individual consultancy is available to assist pupils with study methods, organisational skills, time management and memory techniques. For further information, please contact the Head of Academic Support.
STUDY SKILLS – Learning is a Hoot!
In 2018, a year-course will be offered to all Grade 8 pupils as a means to orienteering them to the demands of high school, tests & examinations, and the anticipated volume of work. The course will be presented in class context and one lesson per 8-day cycle will be allocated for this purpose. With the introduction of tablets as a learning and resource tool, the course also offers electronic learning methods and cognitive memory tools.
WINGS PARENT SUPPORT PROGRAMME
The WINGS initiative is designed to assist and support College parents who have children with learning barriers and special needs. The purpose is to give parents an opportunity to gather together and share their experiences. The intention is to create a group that will care for each other by offering advice, listening to concerns and making recommendations. The name is inspired by the metaphor of flight: the desire to enable our parents to grow their own wings so that they can assist their children in reaching new heights. Parents want to feel valuable and constructive, but often struggle to help their children “soar” because they don’t feel empowered or equipped to deal with the challenges that their children face. Our endeavour is to instill faith in our parents and to give them the tools they need in addressing learning needs and barriers. The acronym WINGS is derived from our desire to create a WELCOMING environment that will INSPIRE parents to NURTURE and GROW their children through our SUPPORT. The meetings are scheduled on the Cornwall Calendar and the group meets in the library. WINGS is an informal initiative and does not incur membership fees or any other monetary obligations.