The move to have early learning centres attached to primary schools is a response to the research showing the positive impact quality early learning has on students’ academic and life outcomes. Here in Western Sydney, the demand for new schools is increasing as the population grows.
This challenges us to think about how we provision for schooling now and into the future in the context of a rapidly changing world. It’s always interesting to observe how other organisations and businesses respond to rapid growth given we are a shift towards services being delivered online. What is evident is that many don’t take the same approach as they may have done a decade ago. Today, it is about being agile, connected, efficient and most importantly, learning focused.
All of this becomes grist for the mill as we think about how to design schools and deliver schooling in today’s world. Our vision is to re-conceptualise schooling away from the traditional model that fragments learning across four stages (preschool, primary, secondary and senior) to a model that is integrated in terms of the learning and operations. In the context of learning, there is a single learning framework that intentionally integrates early years to beyond Year 12 or pre to post schooling (P-P).
These P-P entities are flexible enough to be able to move resources to the point of need wherever that may be on the learning continuum. Currently, school systems are restricted to resourcing either learning learning or primary or secondary, so it is impossible to move staff or resources across these distinct areas. Under a P-P model, resources aren’t duplicated three times over so it means better outcomes for learners. Importantly, spaces are designed around learning not structure so in the upper years, the focus is on students co-designing a curriculum that taps into their preferred pathway whether university, industry or vocational.
Beyond this, it also means that schools become points of engagement for the broader adult community who may wish to engage in post-school study. At its core, a P-P model recognises schooling as more than 9-3pm and K-12. It aims to amplify the transformative effect of education on individuals and communities.