The year in review

year-in-review-1Hi Kew,

Here is a condensed version of my review and evaluation for our school this year. The full version includes a more detailed outline of our goals that were a part of our Annual Implementation Plan (AIP) and a statement of performance for each of these areas. This is available on our school website and hard copies can also be collected from our school office.


As I reflect on the year, I am very proud of what our whole school community has achieved. This year it has been frequently commented on by students, parents and staff that we have a renewed sense of optimism and positivity around the future direction of our school. I am also very excited about the future for Kew Primary. Over the course of this year we have been able to make some key decisions and implement some new processes that will enable and drive our future direction.

2014 has also been a very big year for our staff. We have embraced a very extensive professional learning program and implemented many changes to the way our staff functions. I thank all staff for their commitment and support and acknowledge their hard work and professionalism this year.


There have been so many highlights in my first year as Principal of Kew. The one that stands out the most though is our SPLASH Art Show Family Fun Day. This day was the culmination of many hours of planning by large numbers of parent, teacher and student volunteers. It encapsulated how we can all work together for the benefit of our whole school community. The day itself was also very family friendly and relaxing. It was a wonderful atmosphere to be part of and as such there was a significant level of positive feedback. I will also never forget the large queue of friendly and some not so friendly faces ready to “Paint the Principal”. In fact even my own mum and dad got in on the act!
Next year I am very keen for our school to run a “Kids Fest” style of event. We are also looking for ways to celebrate our cultural diversity.


This list highlights the amazing number and broad range of successful events and extra-curricular programs the school has organised this year. Please note that it is not fully comprehensive as we have run many more school, community and fundraising events during the year.

  • Meet the Teachers Information Evening
  • Welcome to 2014 Peppercorn BBQ
  • Prep Information evenings
  • Meet with the Principal morning teas
  • Working Bees
  • Kew Festival
  • Year 4, 5, & 6 Camps
  • Sports Gala days, District Carnivals (notable our winning of the District Cross Country)
  • SEDA sports program
  • Incursions, Excursions
  • Race around Kew – Family Evening
  • 4 x iPad Parent Information Evenings including the Think u Know Cyber-safety presentation
  • 2 x Community Forums (School Oval Redevelopment Project & School Finances / Grade Structures)
  • Family Maths Night
  • SPLASH – ART Show & Family Fun Day
  • Fathers Association events
  • Swimming lessons across all grades
  • Year 6 Leadership Day
  • CARE Program including tabloid sports day
  • Kewriosity Program x 2
  • Maths Olympiads
  • Enrichment programs
  • 3 Way Learning Conferences
  • Cirque De Kew – Little Devils Circus Skills Performance
  • Gratitude Day
  • Middle School Bike Ed and Bike Hike
  • Run as One – Melbourne Marathon Events
  • Middle School Market day
  • Year 5 Film Night
  • Kick Start Kew – Start Up Program
  • Book Week, Visiting Authors & Premiers Reading Challenge


At the start of this year, I outlined that our school improvement journey would focus on four key areas: COMMUNICATION, CONSISTENCY, CONNECTIONS and CHALLENGE.
We have progressed significantly in all four areas.

Our communications processes now includes more detailed and comprehensive newsletters, term calendars of events, meet with the principal forums and a range of other opportunities that promote fluid and functional communication between school and home. The rollout of our Skoolbag App has been very successful and to date we have 355 people signed up and using it.

Our classroom programs continue to be strengthened through a team approach. Each team has developed improved planning processes and a greater commitment to delivering programs at the point of need for students. Moderation sessions and a consistent student data tracking process have been an important achievement. The development of our teaching and learning protocols is also well underway. This work will continue to be a major focus as we strive towards focusing not only on what we teach, but on who we are teaching and how we are teaching.

Our ability to capture and harness student voice has increased. This began with the successful launch of our Kick Start Kew program and continued with our CARE and Kewriosity sessions. The Year 6 Action Teams student leadership program was also another important way in which our students built a stronger sense of connectedness to school and peers.

A wide range of enrichment and extension programs was delivered across all levels of the school. This included specialist areas and also the Maths Olympiad and Maths Challenge. Most importantly we continued to strive to ensure that the daily classroom programs included a greater range of rich and open ended tasks with a focus on higher order thinking, questioning and a higher level of challenge.



I would like to take the opportunity to acknowledge and thank all members of our school community this year for your contribution and commitment to our school.

As you can see much has been achieved and this can be largely attributed to the positive way in which everyone has engaged and worked with each other. Our Kewmunity is fortunate to have such a varied set of skills, knowledge and backgrounds and this diversity and the way we have harnessed it, has been very powerful.

To this point, I wish to pay tribute to our staff for their hard work and dedication this year. All of our staff team work incredibly hard and they contribute well beyond what is expected. The work we have achieved this year has been largely the result of the good will of our entire staff team.

Thank you also to all of our students for the way they have approached their learning in 2014. I am always impressed with the work I see our students do each day and the improvements and progress they make. Our students also make it a pleasure to come to our school each day. They welcome with a big grin, they laugh and have fun, they try their best, they look after each other and they always strive to be worthy.

We will continue to work together as a team united in the aim of ensuring that all of our students are provided with the highest quality teaching and learning. Our focus is to continue to build a trusting home school partnership that can fully harness the increased confidence in our school and allow our staff team to focus on what is most important, ensuring the best outcomes for each student.







James Penson
Kew Primary School

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