On Wednesday 7 November 2018, Yarra Primary School Council held an evening entitled "Building a Flourishing Future". This event was expertly facilitated by Meredith (mum to Remy and Ollie) and her colleague David. The aim of the evening was to come together as a community, meet Saraid - for those who haven't already, discuss briefly where YPS is at now and then focus on plans for our future.
Alongside Meredith and Dave's facilitation of the evening, we were very fortunate to have Jessamy, a hugely talented and sought-after artist/graphic recorder present, to capture the evening's discussion visually in an incredibly succinct, powerful and lively way. The pictures from the evening will be uploaded on to the school's website for all to see if this hasn't happened already. Please take a look at these when you can as they really do capture the essence of the evening.
We had a very strong turnout with over 70 parents/carers (including some prospective parents), teachers and staff giving up their evening to gather for almost 3 hours. Thanks to everyone who came along. You all contributed to a wonderful evening with great conversations, real insights and fabulous ideas for the future.
The evening was divided into 3 conversations and we all had the opportunity to discuss our experiences, thoughts and ideas in small groups.
In the first conversation, "Stories of the Present" we discussed many topics around how things are at school now including - parents speaking of their children's engagement in learning, teachers discussing their excitement, parents having good relationships with parents, the school community being described as inclusive. Also some negatives were raised with communication and trust being raised as areas of concern.
The second conversation was entitled "the Brutal Facts". Here Saraid presented some key information regarding the demographic make-up of our school and the local community, how we are currently performing in terms of literacy, numeracy and other key areas including engagement and wellbeing.
These facts helped to inform us for the 3rd and final conversation of the evening, "Stories of the Future". This is where we could really channel all our hopes and wishes for the future of YPS. We were encouraged to envision how we would like to see YPS in 2025 and boy, did we get some great ideas! Just some of the suggestions included - making YPS the school of choice in Richmond and the place to be for teachers, YPS becoming a testbed for innovative ideas and education, ensuring our children have positive memories of school and are good humans, sending the grade 6 students out into the world well prepared with leadership qualities, having an improved and integrated music program, ensuring we have adequate purpose-built facilities including a multi-purpose room that fits our growing needs. This part of the evening was a real conversation starter and it seems images from the evening have already been circulated on various social media groups related to school. It's a strength of our school community that we are so connected.
All of the information from the evening will be collated, discussed further over time and will be used to inform future YPS Annual Implementation Plans and School Strategy.
If you missed the evening and would like to contribute to this discussion in some way, please contact Saraid who would love to hear your ideas. I think many of you would agree that it's wonderful to be part of such a strong, vibrant, engaged and thoughtful community. We have so many passions and talents amongst us which we would love to harness for the benefit of our children. We welcome any input from the school community.
Just as a reminder - school council meetings and school council subcommittee meetings are open to all members of the school community. The newsletter will inform you when/where future meetings are being held. Please feel free to come along and join in the conversations!
Yarra Primary School Council