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New era for Year 7s

Local

The start of the 2019 school year next month will also herald new beginnings for Catholic education in South Australia as Year 7 becomes part of secondary schooling.

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In 2015, following consultation with key stakeholders including principals and parents, the South Australian Commission for Catholic Schools endorsed the move of Year 7 from primary to secondary settings.

Most Catholic schools in South Australia are making the change in 2019, with over 3500 students set to start Year 7 when the school gates open in late January.

Director of Catholic Education South Australia Neil McGoran said he was confident that this move was in the “best interests” of students.

“In fact, many of our Catholic R- 12 schools have been working this way for some time,” Dr McGoran said.

Gleeson College at Golden Grove was the first Catholic secondary school to make the transition in 2018 and Dr McGoran said it was a “great success”, providing “positive outcomes” for all involved.

In a bid to smooth the transition process for their Year 6 students, several metropolitan primary and secondary schools participated in a ‘Race to High School’ event this year.

Based on the television series, Amazing Race, students took part in a number of activities designed to familiarise them with their new school, while boosting their confidence and allaying any fears they may have had.

St Gabriel’s, Enfield, was one of the primary schools which participated, with the Year 6 girls visiting Our Lady of the Sacred Heart College at Enfield and the boys attending Blackfriars Priory School, Prospect.

Working in pairs the students undertook challenges such as finding different locations, asking questions of staff, finding our information about the different sporting teams, how to get a student ID and computer log in, and introducing themselves at the canteen.

Many other schools, such as Mary MacKillop College, have held transition days and events to prepare and welcome their newest students.

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