WHERE LEARNING IS THE
HEARTBEAT OF OUR CULTURE.
Strathcona Girls Grammar is committed to nurturing students’ learning through physical and mental wellbeing. Strathcona researched current wellbeing pedagogy and programming, and as a result launched the Felicitier (‘happy’) Program.
This program involved a bold change in the structure and delivery of pastoral care in the School to increase the wellbeing of students. We designed and implemented new initiatives such as The Buddy Program and the PAW (Pathways, Academics and Wellbeing) Model of mentoring to allow more effective relationships between students and greater connections with staff. Based on Strathcona’s values, the Felicitier program aims to empower creative, ethical young women who have an authentic sense of self and optimism for their future.
Anchored in research that each developmental stage has specific needs, the Felicitier Program focuses on what the students need for increased wellbeing at each year level. In the Middle School (Years 7-9), our program focuses on students fostering a sense of connection to their school environment. Across these years, girls are horizontally grouped in Houses which is designed to engender interconnectedness and camaraderie.
This feeds into the Senior School (Years 10-12), where students are vertically House arranged and share physical spaces as a community.
We developed two new programs to run in our Feliciter Program. Firstly, The Buddy Program recognises Year 10 as a pivotal time of change for
our students who return to our main Canterbury campus after 12 months of Year 9 at Tay Creggan, our learning space on the banks of the Yarra in
Hawthorn. To reintegrate Year 10s into the fabric of our Senior campus, this leadership program connects them to the younger students in their House. The Buddy Program further assists our Year 7s with transition and the essential support required. The Buddy Program continues over two years where the students participate in both formal and informal activities with their buddies, build relationships and create organic opportunities for fostering meaningful relationships.
We created a new (Years 10-12) coaching model of pastoral care with the PAW Model. Inspired by the findings of the UNICEF’s November 2018 report on child happiness indicating the most significant influence on happiness at school is the relationships students have with teachers. The PAW model is based on the three discussion areas of: Pathways, Academics and Wellbeing. During the year, House Mentors arrange individual meetings with each student. These one-on-one discussions provide students with feedback and advice for how to develop her own goal/s and take ownership over how they are created and achieved. This process empowers the student to use her knowledge of her character strengths to set goals for the senior years of schooling and life beyond school.
Statistically we are showing a greater sense of community, general health and happiness at Strathcona. We are committed to constantly reflecting on what is working and what changes we can be make to improve outcomes in a rapidly changing world.