Agency on the Adelaide Contemporary Learning Tour

The final Contemporary Learning tour of the year was held in Adelaide on 15-17 November.

We had generous leaders from St Paul Lutheran Primary at Blair Athol, Redeemer Lutheran School in Nuriootpa, Annesley Junior School, YouthInc., and Immanuel College at Novar Gardens who gave up their time to dive deep into some of the innovations that have shaped the journey of transformation that each of these schools are on.

The schools we visited were…

Immanuel College: We had the privilege of listening to the outgoing principal, Kevin Richardson, unpack his Immanuel College journey. From challenging beginnings, Kevin discussed that through hard work, believing in a vision for putting students at the forefront in everything that the College does, and empowering student agency, he has had the honour of leading a thriving, innovative and future thinking school, and a school that the incoming principal will find a pleasure to lead.

Hearing how student voice was pivotal in the design and building of their state of the art facilities, and seeing the fruits of their labour first hand, I am inspired and energised to try and bring this wealth of wisdom back to my home school.

Youth Inc.: Right in the heart of Adelaide’s CBD, Youth Inc. are a school taking creative, innovative approaches to meeting the needs of youth who’ve been failed by traditional models of schooling.

Their foundational principles, though uniquely formed for their context, nonetheless challenge rethinking of our models of rich learning in any context. It’s easy to see why “Learning worth getting out of bed for” is so essential in a context where staying in bed is a real option for all of your students, but in any context, students will only engage to the extent that they see value in their learning.

Redeemer Lutheran School: The school has brilliant facilities and agile learning spaces but the stand out feature was seeing the village philosophy in action which underpins all aspects of school life.

Redeemer inspires every child to Discover, Believe and Flourish as learners throughout their entire learning journey at the school.

The staff were incredibly generous with their time and were clearly passionate about meeting the children where they are at, with a focus to engage students as partners in their learning. Collaboration, a team approach and a shared vision are clearly driving factors in living out “It takes a Village to Raise a Child”.

Annesley Junior School: On our tours and learning walks, students were engaged in inquiry based learning and enterprise projects. Students were clearly proud of their learning and spoke so confidently to our visiting group of teachers. We left inspired by their work and excited to share these ideas with our colleagues at home!

St Paul’s Lutheran Primary: Both teachers and leaders at this school were embracing the opportunities and challenges of 21st Century learning. The focus on student needs was obvious here and we could clearly see a consistent approach to learning evident across classrooms. It was wonderful to be engaged on a learning walk with the deputy Principal so that we could practise the idea of See, Think, Wonder as we observed learning happening. Learning was visible in a range of ways and children had observable agency in how they engaged with and used the space for learning.


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