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Great Teachers

2/06/2017
​Reading to Succeed!

Investing in staff helps to lift reading outcomes


A revitalised approach to building staff capacity in the teaching of reading is benefitting students and staff at WoodLinks State School.
Faced with poor student achievement data, high staff turnover and a relatively inexperienced teaching workforce, the school developed a clear focus for improving student outcomes in reading.

To retain and attract high quality teachers to the school, a new workforce plan was created and a partnership with the Queensland University of Technology established to offer internships to high-achieving students wanting to work in low socioeconomic communities.
The school also developed a comprehensive professional learning strategy, including a Mentor for Beginning Teachers program and a research-based coaching model. In addition to teachers self-nominating for coaching, formal observations of guided reading are held each term to identify teaching skills needing further development.

Professional learning occurs in staff meetings, year-level meetings, year-level coordinator days and pop-up workshops. Professional learning walks and talks with the leadership team were also introduced, as well as a collaborative data inquiry model and case management meetings to further meet the professional learning needs of teachers.

Strong networks across the region have been established, with teachers collaborating with staff from other schools and sharing reading resources and data practices.
The investment in staff has helped to establish a consistent whole-school approach to the teaching of reading, which has improved student reading achievement. It has also led to improved staff retention and regional recognition of the expertise of WoodLinks teachers in the teaching of reading.