Part 1: Analysis of Context
1. What do we know about our learners?
Sunnyside is a dual-track school, and currently enrolls approx. 600 students in Kindergarten to Grade 7. Many of our families reside in the neighbourhood, but many come from all over the City of Surrey for our Montessori Program. The school has a mixed socio-economic demographic as well as a vibrant multicultural community. Our population has risen rapidly over the last few years and will continue to grow based the large housing development in the adjacent area. This has proven to be challenge for our school structure. Our building is three years old and was created to house a population of 470 students. Currently, we have five portables onsite and are planning for an expansion of portables to house our increasing population.
2. What evidence supports what we know about our learners?
The school is architecturally beautiful and is approximately 3 years old.
We have an engaged parent community and a very busy and active PAC. We also have a dedicated and caring staff that have engaged in everything from school sports, music and band as well as student leadership and explorations in the upper intermediate grades.
Part 2: Focus and Planning
3. What focus emerges as a question to pursue?
To nurture a healthy community of learners who feel a sense of belonging and pride in being a student at Sunnyside. Essential Question:
How do we keep our big school small?
As one of the fastest growing schools in the Province, we are recognizing the need to attend purposefully to the following:
· how students move safely in and out of the building
· how we gather at assemblies and play safely outside
· how we welcome our students new to English in to our community
· how we connect and value one another as new students continue to join our population
This question references the Personal and Social Competency: Students will have ongoing opportunities to:
· understand their own identities and those of other people
· understand and care about themselves and others
· find and achieve their purposes in the world
What will we use to demonstrate growth in this area?
· Student SEL/belonging surveys
· Monthly Social Responsibility Assemblies
· Student Leadership and Student Council projects
· Kindness Club initiatives
· Ongoing lessons integrated across curriculum
· Growth of collaborative practices
Students do not always enter school ready and able to learn. As a school community, we will endeavour to invite ALL children into our classrooms and our learning, to provide multiple points of entry and varied activities to increase student interest and
4. What professional learning do we need?
As a school the range in learning that we have is vast. We are using Gordon Neufeld as a foundation for our Social Emotional Goal of making our “Big school feel small”. All staff are engaging in: classroom meetings, mindfulness, and ‘Kids in the Know’ as foundational for their work with their children.
Student engagement using a variety of strategies ranging from digital presentations and learning to more traditional yet effective ways to engage children in their learning. All staff are engaged in strong Formative Assessment techniques and have worked on providing choice for children to demonstrate their learning.
5. What is our plan?
What does this look like in the classroom/school?
· Explicit teaching in Social responsibility and Social emotional learning (Zones of Regulation; Virtues, MindUp)
· Purposefully connecting and “attaching” to each of our students to foster a sense of belonging and inclusion
· Inquiring into student identity; understanding and celebrating diversity in all forms
· Organizing playground monitors and games leaders/peer mentors
· Leadership Roles for grade 6/7 students
· Buddy System (buddy guided reading; buddy activities and assemblies)
· Monthly Assemblies focused on inclusion and belonging
· School spirit wear and days
Part 3: Reflect, Adjust, Celebrate
6. How will we know our plan is making a difference? (evidence / success criteria)
At present we are focusing on coming together as a staff around these ideas. As such, the staff spend extensive time in their own learning. We have adopted the “Neufeld” approach to staff/student attachment.
In terms of engagement, the staff are engaged in formative assessment and deep student reflection into their own learning:
On any given time at Sunnyside you will likely see examples of social engagement, student hands on learning, and clear articulation of why children are learning what they engaged in.
7. Based on the evidence, does our inquiry require adjustment?
We need to develop metrics by which to measure specific outcomes. As a staff we have gathered and reached consensus around our two goal areas based on the facts that we are in growing demographic in a newly developed area.
In the next year we are going to come together to find effective ways to quantify what we are doing and find effective measures of our effectiveness.