Learning and Teaching

Learning and Teaching

St. Mary’s is a Catholic inclusive education community where all members are respected, cared for and have a strong sense of belonging. We believe that we are all unique in our ability to learn and we can all experience success. Learning and Teaching at St. Mary’s School provides a collaborative environment which empowers students to reach their full potential. Through a curriculum that integrates faith and life, engaging learning experiences, varied teaching approaches and feedback, students will develop the necessary skills to contribute as active and socially just citizens. Learning and Teaching is underpinned by our school values we believe to be central to our identity, relationships and endeavours:

  • Respect
  • Integrity
  • Compassion
  • Justice
We believe fundamental to improving student outcomes: is learning and teaching, curriculum and assessment.

Learning and Teaching at St. Mary’s is committed to providing quality learning and teaching for every student. Integral to this is a positive learning environment, innovative curriculum, flexible and current learning and teaching, assessment and reporting.


Positive Learning Environment

An organised, welcoming and caring environment that builds positive relationships and                  further learning opportunities.

Students, parents and teachers work in partnership in line with the school’s mission, vision            and values.

Promotes a culture of value and respect for individuals.

Ensures student success through structured support, the valuing of effort and recognition of            their work.



A whole-school Faith Based Inquiry curriculum is planned and implemented which is                      consistent with government and diocesan requirements is planned, implemented and                      evaluated biannually.

Faith Based Inquiry learning is fostered to integrate faith and life through learning                          experiences that are accessible, motivating, meaningful and challenging for all students.

All students have access to a curriculum that includes the eight Learning Areas and four                  Capabilities.  

Several learning areas are incorporated into learning units when appropriate. This is                      supported through Faith Based Inquiry learning.

Curriculum is documented, planned and taught sequentially from The Victorian Curriculum              and Catholic Education Melbourne Religious Education Curriculum Framework.

Curriculum is adjusted to meet student needs.


Learning and Teaching - Teaching Strategies

Teachers work collaboratively in teams to design rich and engaging learning experiences                matched to student needs, research-based best practice and the curriculum.

Faith Based Inquiry learning that encourages students to engage in independent planning,              rich dialogue, higher order thinking and purposeful learning.

A variety of teaching opportunities and approaches are provided (whole class, group,                      individual and intervention).

Teaching strategies are adjusted to respond to individual differences in students’ needs,                  abilities, interests and learning styles

Lessons and units have a clear purpose including learning intentions, success criteria and                planned assessment.

Targeted and explicit teaching to ensure teaching is at the point of need so all students                  make growth.

Student voice is encouraged, expected, extended and characterised by high quality                        interactions. It is considered in the planning of learning and teaching strategies.

A whole school professional learning plan is developed in conjunction with the school                      improvement plan.

Teachers develop annual individual professional learning plans.


Assessment and Reporting

The school implements an assessment schedule for data collection including pre and post                testing to measure student progress.

Formative and summative assessment tasks are planned, implemented and varied to meet            student needs with criteria that has a clear link to learning goals and the curriculum.

Reporting modes include formal school reports twice a year, teacher – parent –student                    meetings and student portfolios.

Anecdotal records, observation and annotated work samples are part of the assessment                  data.

Assessment in ongoing and integrated into learning activities.

Assessment data is analysed collaboratively to inform evaluation and modification of                      teaching and learning strategies.


Responsibilities– teachers, students, parents

Students, parents and staff work in a partnership to support our Catholic faith

in line with the school values to achieve the best possible opportunities and outcomes for the students.



Build positive relationships through knowing and valuing their students.

Collaborate in teams to plan, implement and evaluate learning opportunities and strategies            that engage students in their learning.

Review their teaching and learning strategies, and make necessary adjustments to enable              student growth, progress and success.

Provide a challenging and stimulating curriculum with high expectations of success in                    learning for all students.

Ensure curriculum is documented and assessment records are up to date.

Are clear in their understanding of the Victorian Curriculum and Catholic Education                        Melbourne Religious Education Curriculum Framework.

Ensure that learning is sequential, meaningful, evidence based and engages students in                  their learning.

Encourage students to take responsibility and be risk takers in their learning.

Are committed to improving their professional knowledge and practice through                              collaboration and professional learning.

Use resources that support contemporary learning.



Develop confident growth mindset to have a go when new learning opportunities are                      presented.

Engage in effective social skills that reflect the school values and norms.

Participate in learning activities.

Be organised and responsible learners who consistently try to give of their best.

Seek assistance when support is needed.

Be curious and creative learners

Attend school regularly and punctually.

Ensure their home tasks are completed and reflect their own work.



Work in a partnership of respect, trust and cooperation with the school.

Provide information on their child that may impact on their learning progress and wellbeing.

Participate in opportunities to learn about student learning and discuss their child’s,                        progress and achievement.

Support student behaviour strategies implemented by the school.

Encourage children to see themselves as responsible for their own learning and promote                the behaviours of independence and resilience.

Be active in supporting and promoting the school as a faith community.





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