Part 1: Analysis of Context
1. What do we know about our learners?
Tamanawis Secondary School is a vibrant and diverse community serving more than 1450 students in grades 8 through 12. Our Mascot: Wildcat Our Mission: We engage our students in developing the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to build a healthy, democratic and diverse society.
Our Motto: Caring Community, Engaged Learners, Inspired Citizens
Our Vision: Tamanawis Secondary School is committed to helping students develop the knowledge, understanding, skills, and attitudes that will prepare them to be socially responsible citizens of the twenty-first century.
To achieve our vision, we will design learning experiences that will help students:
- Develop the skills identified as Core Competencies by the Ministry of Education including communication, thinking (both creative & critical), and personal and social awareness and identify.
- Learn to use technology to access, select, scrutinize, organize, evaluate, and apply information
- Understand and begin to fulfill roles as socially responsible citizens in an economically, socially, and culturally diverse local and global community
- Use the processes of critical, creative and reflective thinking
- Demonstrate goal setting, decision-making, and career planning skills, and the attributes of a responsible, self-directed life-long learner
- Understand the need for physical, social, and emotional well-being
Through collaborative opportunities such as Staff Meetings, Department Leader meetings, PAC Meetings and Student Inquiry Meetings, we engage in inquiry processes using our District’s guiding questions and resources to identify what do we know about our learners? What we know… Our students and their families truly care about our school. Students demonstrate a high level of engagement and commitment to learning through curricular and extra-curricular opportunities. They appear happy and well connected to each other and the world around them exhibiting caring and inclusive relationships with each other, staff and visitors to our school.
By reviewing demographic (District & City of Surrey) information, we understand the many of our students come from homes where English is not the first language but more likely the second language acquired later in early childhood. This may be a result of immigration and the understanding the default language of choice is often impacted by the language of the elderly in the home.
Knowing this about our students, it was wonderful to see in February 2017, our Grade 12 students score above average in the English 12 exam, school, and overall mark than the rest of our District and Province.
Not only are our students highly engaged learners in the classroom, they are involved in many extra-curricular team and individual sports, performing arts such as band, dance and drama, more than 30 school clubs, community volunteerism, and global initiatives such as raising funds for families and children in developing countries. While our students continue to find success on many levels with curricular and extra-curricular opportunities, we continue to emphasize further growth in many literacy and numeracy initiatives.
Our recent Graduates of 2017 at Swan-E-Set Golf & Country Club.
2. What evidence supports what we know about our learners?
Evidence or data comes in many forms. The Surrey School District keeps demographic data which in itself tells a story. For instance recent demographic evidence communicates the following information about our school neighbourhood:
- More than 38 different “first” languages are spoken with 49% of homes speaking Punjabi and 25% of homes speaking English
- 76% of our students are born in Canada and the other 24% were born in 1 of 38 different countries
In addition to demographic evidence, staff use student writing samples, journal entries, professional observations, school and provincial assessments, surveys, and Edudata to determine learning focuses. Generating ideas and recognizing themes through collaborative opportunities inclusive of students, staff, and families. The Wordle below represents how are staff and students value learning.
The recent Provincial exam results (February 2017) also provides data on how are learners compare to each other, our District and the Province. Comparison provides a foundation for perspective. As we look to the coming years, the Ministry of Education will be instituting a Provincial Literacy
Some of the highlights of the 2016/17 school year providing us with more evidence, or better yet, our own collective narrative:
Our Kabaddi Team as pioneers of their sport win the first Surrey Championships. In addition our Cricket team goes undefeated to also win the Surrey Championships.
Our 2nd Annual Scholarship Luncheon hosted by our staff, students and the Culinary program. This wonderful event connects scholarship recipients with scholarship donors.
Building stronger relationships with our family of schools through students lead initiatives such as maker space projects with MJ Norris and culinary training with Beaver Creek.
MJ Norris students working on projects in our maker space classroom.
Beaver Creek students learning along side our ACE-It Culinary students.
Some of our staff and students visited Thomas Haney Secondary School in Maple Ridge to learn more about Flex scheduling as we look to find ways to empower students to see learning environments in different ways.
From June 5-9 our school celebrated Canada 150 with a number of events and celebrations.
Once again our annual Dance Vibes Showcase is an opportunity for our very talented dancers to showcase their abilities to the community.
During Spring Break 2017, our travel club visited Europe with a focus on recognizing Canada’s impact on world history by visiting Vimy Ridge.
Our BASES students and staff sold Mother’s Day plants after growing them and potting them in our school’s greenhouse.
Our annual Coffee House is an incredible event showcasing our students writing, poetry, art, and spoken word.
Final assessments looked differently this year as students had to demonstrate learning and understanding through practical science labs to end the semester. This aligns with the new curriculum and the “know, do, understand” approach to learning.
Part 2: Focus and Planning
3. What focus emerges as a question to pursue?
Focus (Core Competencies):
How does developing awareness of themselves in relation to the core competencies help students improve their literacy skills?
In addition, the following questions will also guide our collective professional learning:
How will strengthening the relationship with our family of schools impact students and staff?
How will the new curriculum continue to impact our practice and inspire student learning?
How do we continue to shift the ownership of learning to students?
4. What professional learning do we need?
- Our staff continue to develop a comprehensive understanding of the core competencies and how they:
- are interwoven through the curricular competencies
- support the development of our students in becoming life long learners and productive citizens
- literacy strategies relevant to each subject area
5. What is our plan?
- develop how students will model their competencies
- create a survey to assess students current understanding of the core competencies
- integrate the core competencies into our everyday language in all aspects of school life
- intentional recognition of how students are meeting the competencies
- create a follow-up survey to assess student understanding of core competencies