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Truth, Pride and Friendship

Principals' Update - 2019

Dear Parents and Carers of our student community and Friends of Riverside ESC,

Welcome to the 2019 school year. Mandurah is growing and so is our school -- we have a record enrolment of 63 students with several more inquiries in various stages of processing. Of course, part of the growth is demographically explained, but it is much more than that. With pride in our staff, our programs and our whole school, we can justifiably say we are good at what we do -- nurturing your child's potential for a meaningful and contributory life. “My boy has done so well since moving to Riverside ESC” was an observation shared by a grateful parent at reception today.

Parents often have to reassess learning pathways for their child, particularly when indicators shine forth that mark your child as unique and in need of a specialised learning environment. New enrolment inquiries are welcomed. At Riverside, every child is valued for their unique expressions and abilities; every child has the best possible opportunity to flourish. Provided you meet Department-approved criteria for enrolment at an education support centre, your journey with RESC can begin.

With the exception of one teacher who was delighted to be able to take up a position at another school closer to her place of residence, our staff remains largely unchanged from last year. Stability and high morale mean attention can be properly directed to enhancing our school programs and activities, to the benefit of all students and families associated with us. We start 2019 with 51 staff.

Recognised as an Independent Public School, our school undertakes regular reviews overseen by the Department of Education. Our next review is due late this year. Described by past reviewers as an exemplary school, we adhere to a program of regular internal evaluation of our effectiveness to maximise student learning, supported by the School Board and our parent community. Remember, although feedback is always welcomed, we like compliments too!

In 2019 we are guided by FOCUS 2019, an initiative of the Director General of Education’s Classroom First Strategy which promotes effective leadership and teaching while maximising the care and development of each and every student. Key statements in the focus document, held to the fore by our school, include:

  • High expectations of success for every student
  • A renewed and relentless focus on the best possible teaching practices
  • Strong and empowering leadership
  • Being a capable and responsive organisation

Behaviour management is a professionally refined and caring part of our program, through which we seek to provide a safe learning and working environment for all who attend our campus while guiding children toward self-management of their emotional state. Occasionally, a student has an 'off' day and needs a little time out, and we are pleased to advise a room is now specifically dedicated to de-escalation, enabling them to quickly and respectfully regain composure before returning to class.

Our website continues to be a tool that supports communication with our school community and beyond. It is the primary source of new enrolment inquiries and receives thousands of page visits every year. We were surprised to learn that it was a key component of an overseas family's decision to choose Mandurah as a place to migrate to.

In closing, we remind parents and carers our door is always open to discuss educational matters relating to your child. For our mutual convenience it is always worthwhile ringing first to set up an appointment.

All the best for 2019.

Kind Regards,

Jim Douglas, Principal                                    Tamarra Rekman, Deputy Principal