Yeronga State High School
In 2015, the Yeronga SHS leadership team were looking for ways to support particularly at risk students with refugee backgrounds to develop hope, connection to the school and language development. The leadership team were also keen to improve literacy outcomes, especially writing and broaden pathway perceptions. The YConnect project was set up as an intervention to support Learning and Engagement. collaborative learning context using artists and arts-based pedagogies to re-engage students; support their sense of connection; and improve language, literacy (and numeracy) outcomes as outlined in the Australian Curriculum. The results were significant. In NAPLAN, YSHS student gains higher than both State and National averages in most literacy dimensions. NAPLAN Writing gain in MSS for matched students equalled 10 scale score points greater than National MSS Improvement from 2016 to 2018 and, overwhelmingly, the lowest achieving students in terms of academic results and engagement were the ones who improved most in those areas (as reported by students and teachers and evidenced in curriculum results’). On the teaching side, 48 educators involved in the program and 90% of teachers participated in professional development.