The Secret of Getting Ahead is Getting Started
American writer Mark Twain commented, “The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and starting on the first one.”
This quote resonates with me as we embarked on our VCE online journey. The challenges of this year are well documented, and our goal has always been to support our girls in every possible way in a changed landscape. From the beginning, we were responsive and proactive. The VCE English teachers at St Catherine’s moved forward in leaps and bounds as we rewrote and reviewed our curriculum in Units 1 to 4 English, a task that we all took on with purpose and drive.
However, the central question we had was; ‘How will we run our SACs? How can we deliver this assessment online? While many schools rescheduled and delayed these assessments for later in the year, I was determined to find a way to ‘break down this complex overwhelming task’ and find a way forward, and we did.
The Year 12 team took on the epic task of delivering our English SACs online in Term 2. This came after weeks of consultation on the logistics, the technology, the authenticity of the task and making sure every student was comfortable with this online approach. We tested our approach by running a Practice SAC first which allowed us to review all aspects of this assessment prior to proceeding with the SAC itself. The goal was to ensure equity for all students and an authentic assessment, which we achieved. One student commented, “It went better than I thought it would! It was pretty much the same as to how it would run in class.”
Many schools chose to delay their English SACs moving them into Term 3, a choice I was not prepared to make due to the constant unknown of this VCE year. It was a decision that paid off as we are now faced with another Term of online for our Year 12 students. This Faculty and our VCE English teachers are confident and well equipped to complete our final SACs online.
We moved ahead and took a risk, a risk that was well planned and implemented. Why? Because at St Catherine’s we will always work to deliver the very best for our students, and in this uncontrollable year we are living through, it is so important to demonstrate that a willingness to take risks is the path to success. Every person engaged in this journey can be very proud with what we are achieving.