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Ivanhoe Girls’ values strong parent-teacher relationships and over the past few weeks Learning Progress Interviews have provided parents the opportunity to meet with teachers to discuss their child’s learning progress and areas for development.

Remarkably, just over 3,000 interviews took place over both the Junior and Senior School. This certainly reflects the dedication of our teachers and commitment from our parent community to work together in partnership as we seek to provide each student with a holistic education that equips them to learn, navigate, connect and thrive both now and well into the future.

In doing so, I can’t help but reflect on the incredible influence both teachers and parents have as role models for young people. We have the capacity to model how we want the world to be through the words and actions our students are hearing and watching each and every day. Basketball coach, John Wooden once suggested that “being a role model is the most powerful form of education”. 

He also warned that parents may sometimes neglect this “because they get so caught up in making a living they forget to make a life.”

The staff at Ivanhoe Girls’ very much appreciate the relevance of this from an educational perspective. Strong role modelling from home has an incredible impact on a child’s education and wellbeing as parents and teachers share common goals for students through collaborative, respectful and positive parent-teacher relationships.

Mrs Jo Rowlands, Prep Teacher, with Prep students

Teachers are indeed role models. They inspire, teach by example and reveal for students what it means to be a deep thinker and a learner. Harvard Professor, Ron Ritchhart, aptly puts it this way:

“In thinking about being role models for our students, we need to think about what we have to offer through being the best of who we are…Thinking and learning don’t require perfection as much as they require constant monitoring, assessment, revision and reflection. Indeed, it could be argued that little is learned when things go perfectly. Our mistakes offer some of the best avenues for learning. What we want to show our students is this reality. How we handle mistakes. How we learn from experience. How we plan but also how we adjust midstream. How we reflect. All this, as well as the questions that burn inside us and drive our curiosity.”

Curiosity is often contagious and such modelling in a classroom environment brings about a powerful learning experience for students. This, along with the opportunity to nurture the dispositions, values and strength of character we want to grow and develop in our students, underpins an authentic learning environment.

Mr Toby Le Lacheur, Teacher of Mathematics and Science, with students from his Year 7 Tutor Group

At Ivanhoe Girls’, we view parents as essential partners in educating our students. Strong links between home and school through community events and information sessions such as Learning Progress Interviews provide a culture of collaboration and engagement.

Investing in these connections and conversations builds strong parent-teacher partnerships as we all work to collaborate and be role models for the children in our care.

Mrs Davina McClure
Deputy Principal/Head of Senior School

Ritchhart, R. (2015) Creating Cultures of Thinking, Jossey-Bass, USA.