This collection of bland generalisations and relatively meaningless statistics, produced as a requirement of the Australian Government Programmes for Schools Quadrennial Administrative Guidelines 2005 to 2008 is designated the Candlebark Annual Report for 2006.
Staff Retention and Attendance
In 2006, Candlebark had 4 full time teachers, 3 part time teachers, 2 visiting instrumental teachers, and 2 support staff. During 2006 one of the support teachers left, and was replaced, and at the end of 2006 one part time teacher left. This gives an overall staff retention rate of 91%. The staff attendance rate was 98.3%.
The student attendance rate for 2006 was 95.3%
Staff Professional Development
Among courses attended by staff in 2006 were the Victorian Principal’s Conference, AISWA Conference, first aid courses, courses on Bloom’s taxonomy and on the teaching of phonics. Additional to this is school initiated professional development.
Candlebark adds value in many different ways, for example by offering a weekly programme of activities which can range from basketball to knitting, from cooking to ceramics. We also have many camps, excursions and sleepovers, which in 2006 included trips to theatre, ballet, CERES, circuses and a factory. Values and character development are important to us.
We expect students to show kindness and courtesy towards others, and we encourage them to take on many responsibilities. A great deal of staff time and energy goes into creating a climate which is positive and benevolent. We encourage students to think in empathetic and creative ways.
Just under 50% of the students learned a musical instrument (piano, guitar, voice, cello) in one-on-one lessons. A voluntary choir met at lunchtimes and dance featured strongly in the school program. There were many opportunities for students to have extra dance instruction during their free time. We had a number of concerts and soirees throughout the year, culminating in a production of A Christmas Carol.
Formal competitive sport against other schools is not part of the school’s program, but students played a wide variety of sports during PE, during free time, and during activity sessions. The sports included basketball, soccer, rugby, cricket and tennis. Bike riding, bushwalking, cross country running and orienteering are particular features of the school’s program.
The school put on a major musical production of A Christmas Carol which involved all students. Chess is an activity that is particularly encouraged. It is part of the school timetable, and a popular activity during free time, with much support from staff.
Candlebark is a non-selective school, and in our first year we attracted a wide variety of students. AIM Tests Of our students who sat for the AIM tests in 2006, 100% of Year 7 students exceeded the national benchmarks. This assessment comprises reading, writing, and numeracy. In Grade 5, all students exceeded the national benchmarks except for two students whose reading was below the national benchmark. In Grade 3, all students but one exceeded the national benchmarks.
Annual Parental Survey
A parental survey was distributed to all families in mid-2007. The response rate was 6%. The results, although positive, are statistically insignificant. The school receives many unsolicited e-mails and other messages from parents, expressing their delight with the school. Parents frequently refer other families looking for a school to Candlebark, but we have so many students seeking places at the school that waiting lists are effectively closed.
Annual Teacher Survey
A survey of teachers was delivered to all teaching staff in mid–2007. One teacher responded. The results, although positive, are statistically insignificant. The staff at Candlebark consistently express an idealistic and dedicated commitment to the school.
Candlebark’s Academic Staff 2006
At the highest level of attainment, as specified by the reporting conditions, the following degrees and diplomas were held by the seven teaching staff: one doctorate, three Masters’ degrees, seven Bachelors’ degrees, seven Diplomas, and two certificates.