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STUDENT SUPPORT STRUCTURES
Students and staff at St Mary's are supported by
a Campus Minister and a Learning Support Teacher as well as our College
Chaplain. Advisers from Brisbane Catholic Education are also on hand.
LEARNING SUPPORT TEACHER
The Learning Support Teacher as a school-based specialist teacher works
under the direction of the Principal and is supported professionally by the
Senior Education Officer Support Teacher and Therapy Services. "Students
with special needs" could include such students as gifted students, students
whose first language is not English, physically impaired students, students
with specific disabilities, high support needs students, and students with
specific learning difficulties.
Supporting students by:
• assisting students to further develop skills and knowledge in the areas of
literacy and numeracy.
• providing information which helps students to be aware of different types
of thinking, to provide strategies which encourage students to think more
skilfully and learn more effectively.
• providing students with techniques which assist with research, notetaking,
planning, writing and presenting essays and assignments.
Supporting teachers by:
• liaising with students, parents, other teachers and those professionals
resourcing students with special needs and disseminating pertinent
information to staff.
• providing information and strategies to assist teaching staff in the
adaptation of the learning environment to better accommodate students who
have special needs.
• working with teachers in team teaching situations.
• enhancing opportunities for individualised and small group instruction by
either working with small groups or individual students or taking the class
so that teachers may work with small groups or individuals within an
• Parent/Tutor programs/other parent programs
• Regular liaison with parents of students with support needs
Transition for Year 8 and Year 10 students
Providing information pertaining to areas of special needs
Referring parents to support groups.
The SCHOOL COUNSELLORS provide a service of support to students, staff and
parents of the school community.
The Essential Support Services the Counsellors provide would involve:
(a) Counselling students, parents and teachers in crisis.
(b) Counselling students on request with a view to resolving their personal
(c) Preparing and counselling students to negotiate life changes especially
at points of transition.
(d) Assisting students with special needs, in collaboration with other
specialist personnel and providing support for those students with different
(e) Providing school community support by
- counselling students referred by staff
- Consulting with teachers to assist students whose classroom behaviour is
impeding their own or other students academic progress;
- providing consultancy and support to parents and members of the school
(f) Collaborating with administrative and other staff to develop programs
that further the personal growth and development of students and the school
Career education is regarded as very important and forms part of the
Personal Development Program at all year levels. The Careers Room is located
in the Jackman Building and is open for browsing daily. As well, the college
Homesite has an extensive Careers Page with direct links to all major
career-related sites across Australia and the World. Goal setting and Career
Planning are essential for students in today’s competitive environment.
In 1863, when the Sisters of Mercy commenced Catholic education in Ipswich
they could not have imagined the career paths followed by St Mary's girls
today. Students in recent years have entered legal, medical, science,
engineering, computing and all the business professions.
Students at St Mary’s College, Ipswich, have access to state-of-the-art
computer facilities giving them the opportunity to use appropriate
technology as a normal part of the learning process in all subjects at all
All computers are networked and students can choose to print to a laser
black & white printer or a colour printer.
All computers are networked to a central file server allowing access to
library resources, CD access and laser printers. Encyclopaedias such as
Encyclopaedia Britannica and Comptons Infopedia are available on each
computer in the network. Each student is allocated her own file storage area
where she can store her own work. This area is not accessible to other
students as it is password protected. Teachers can access this drive to
facilitate on-line marking. Students can access their files from any
computer in the system.
Every computer can access the Internet enabling all students to have the
opportunity to use the resources of the World wide Web as a research and
learning tool. Each student has a personal e-mail address allowing students
to e-mail each other, their teachers, themselves at their home address and
anyone around the world with e-mail facilities. St Mary’s College has a
Computer Use Policy which outlines appropriate and inappropriate uses of the
computer system. Students and parents are required to sign the policy before
a student can access the system.
St Mary’s College is connected to the Internet via a satellite service
provider. The satellite link provides virtually unlimited bandwidth allowing
for data to be downloaded at a much faster rate than that allowed via ISDN
The College has an excellent and extensive College Website. It provides
up-to-date information about the College, as well
the College Intranet has a multitude of links to
educational material on the World Wide Web.
All computer rooms have been architecturally designed and furnished with
custom-built furniture. The design facilitates learning in a technological
environment. The teacher is able to instruct the entire class as well as
move about the classroom and see several monitors at one time. Peer tutoring
is facilitated by this room design and the teacher can address and work with
small groups so that each student can see the screen that the teaching is
using and access her own computer at the same time. Furnishing in one
computer room takes into account furniture arrangement in many modern office
The Computer Operation plan ensures that students will continue to have the
advantage of an education which employs up-to-date technology. The plan
allows for the replacement of computers on a four-year cycle. The Parents’
and Friends’ Association has worked closely in cooperation with the
administration and staff of the College to put the Computer Operation plan
All students in Year 8 study computing as part of the core curriculum.
Computers are regarded as essential tools in subjects such as Accounting,
Computing, Languages, IPT, Mathematics, Media Studies, Languages,
Secretarial Studies, Social Sciences and Typewriting. Word-processing,
spreadsheets, graphics, databases and subject specific packages are all
utilised. The fully automated library enables students to use computers in
their study and research.
St Mary's College has state-of-the-art computer facilities giving students
the opportunity to use appropriate technology in the course of their
St Mary's is moving to a 1:1 ratio with the deployment
of wireless enabled laptops starting in 2010. See
1 Laptop Program
The College Resource Centre provides resources (including printed material
and audio-visual software) to assist both students and teachers in their
learning and teaching, as well as providing books for recreational reading.
The latter is encouraged through reading schemes, CLIMB, GRIN and STAR. The
library is automated, with a computerized catalogue and circulation system.
In addition, students have access to education software, both disk-based and
on CD-ROM and the St Mary’s network via a number of terminals. By 2012, all
students will access the resources via their laptops.
The library draws on resources outside its own collection to assist
students, through links with the Ipswich Global Information Centre and
Internet, the State Library, the Periodical Centre for Schools, and networks
involving other school libraries.
Facilities and resources are constantly being upgraded.
take time out to have a