VicSRC in focus: Collaboration and Partnerships
In our eighth bitesize piece of the VicSRC Policy Platform, we break down our next focus area: Collaboration and Partnerships. See how it underpins all our work - and can be used as a guide to yours.
GOAL 8: Schools and their students works together with their communities.
Why this matters
We already play important roles in our communities and families. While we will take up new leadership roles in the future, many of us are leaders within our schools and communities today and have responsibilities in our families and communities as carers, supporters or as employees. Through our schools we can find new opportunities to play leadership roles in our communities is a range of interesting ways.
When we are more involved in our community, everybody benefits. We benefit when our schools and communities work together, sharing responsibility for our learning. When this happens, we are also better understood by the community and recognised as important members of society. Schools can benefit too from the resources communities have to offer. Communities also benefit – we have unique perspectives on what the strengths and challenges of our communities are and we have skills to draw on to share those ideas and create change.
In addition, being involved in our community helps our personal development by helping us feel part of our community, shaping our sense of identity and culture and teaching us new skills. Strong links between community and school can also make an important difference for those of us at risk of leaving school. Partnerships between workplaces and schools can also give us skills we can use in the workplace.
As well as working with the community, schools can work together to benefit students. Pooling resources can help provide specialist teaching or activities, help overcome geographic or social isolation, support innovation, facilitate learning across age brackets and enable sharing of good practice.
It is important to us to have the chance to meet students from different schools, such as at the VicSRC Student Voice Workshops.
All schools have enough student support and wellbeing services such as welfare coordinators, health professionals and counsellors to meet the needs of all students.
Teachers and students are provided with information and resources to help us collaborate effectively with community groups and with other schools.
Schools build partnerships with local organisations that enable us to work on projects in the local community and that bring community groups into the school.
We are involved in deciding how our school will engage with the local community and we then create actions from this involvement (such as developing community resources or community based research) as part of the curriculum.
We have the opportunities to be a part of student action teams that work on issues that interest us in the wider community.
We are supported to work collaboratively with students from other schools and these opportunities are expanded.
Our school work includes projects for the local media, researching within the local community and/or other things of benefit to our community.
“Working together in the community helps both students and adults to better understand one another and their needs. I love being able to work with my school and community as it helps to strengthen these relationships.”
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