Helping younger students with their work has led to a flowering of confidence and pride in Summer. While she struggled to find a community placement, Summer was able to quickly secure a position as a student supporter in the Year 7 classroom.
New arrivals to Australia often struggle with the curriculum, both because of the classroom expectations of students and the difficulty of mastering content at the same time as mastering a new language. With a dedicated and patient helper to interpret the teacher’s instructions, and to support their reading and writing, our students get the sort of immediate support that helps them to keep up with the other students.
The role of classroom support within the College is one introduced to the volunteering elective in the last couple of years. Previously, students were engaged in community volunteering twice a week. Timetabling changes have prevented students leaving for community work twice a week, but that opened up the opportunity for on-campus support roles.
Working with the same students each week has enabled relationships to develop between the volunteers and the recipients. We asked Salman from Year 7 English if he would like a helper such as Summer in all his classes and his answer was an immediate YES!