St Martin’s, as a Catholic Diocesan Systemic School, has a particular obligation to ensure that Catholic schooling is as inclusive as possible in accordance with the Gospel values of respect, equity and social justice teachings of the Church.
A particular focus is on:
- Ensuring a quality education which maximises the individual development and achievement of all students;
- Establishing a culture that is supportive and responsive to individual’s needs and whereby each student is recognised and valued;
- Promoting the access, participation, engagement and enhanced learning outcomes of Catholic students with a disability;
- Emphasising individual rather than group learning;
- Developing a whole school approach, response and responsibility towards a student with a disability;
- Providing individualised plans for each student with unique learning needs;
- Encouraging and supporting increased involvement of parents in decision-making and planning.
The term ‘student with special needs’ includes:
- Students with disability who have been assessed by an accredited professional as having an intellectual, sensory, physical, mental health, language disorder, autism or multiple impairments, to a degree that significantly affects learning and development. These students receive funding and additional support in accordance with the Commonwealth Targeted Programs (Special Education) in Catholic Schools.
- Students with learning difficulties/disabilities. These students do not have identified intellectual disability yet they exhibit significant and on-going difficulties in key aspects or particular areas of academic learning. They may be achieving significantly below general expectation for their age and general ability. They are not eligible for funding support through Commonwealth Targeted Programs (Special Education).
- Students with ‘special needs’ are also those who may be identified as being gifted and possess a range of skills and talents generally exceeding those expected for the students age and grade.
“Gifted students are those who do things a little earlier, a little faster, a little better and probably a little differently than most other students”
At St Martin’s we use a variety of methods to identify students with giftedness:
- Formal psychologist’s report stating IQ falls in the gifted range;
- Off level testing/Above Stage testing;
- Teacher identification – data collection;
- Standardised testing;
- Results from competitions;
- Checklist of gifted student characteristics;
- Parent identification.
The primary means of educational enrichment that is used at St Martin’s within the classroom is higher level thinking, open-ended questioning, “real life” problems, critical thinking and creative thinking programs. In this way students can continue to gain from social engagement with their peers.
- Chess Club
- Mathematics Challenge Groups and Workshops
- Lighthouse Learning Mathematics
- Come on Kid’s Maths Program
- Public Speaking and Debating
- Photography Workshops
- Concert Band and Ensembles
- School Choir