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Western Australia 6052
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Academic Extension

Academic Extension at St Peter’s Primary School

Academic extension is offered to students who demonstrate the need for a more challenging curriculum. The Extension program recognises the innate dignity of each person and acknowledges the school’s responsibility to make provisions for the unique gifts and talents of all students. It provides opportunities that enable and encourage students to develop t o their full potential. At St Peter’s Primary School, Academic Extension is provided to students in two modes:

K – Year 3: In-class extension. Activities are modified for capable students. The Extension teacher acts as support personnel to the classroom teacher, consulting to provide ideas for appropriate instruction, materials or strategies that support the regular classroom teacher in meeting the educational needs of gifted, high achieving or highly capable students. With the differentiation of tasks given to the high ability students, opportunity is given to them to work on learning activities that are commensurate with their academic ability.

Year 4 – 6: Withdrawal program. A variety of identification procedures are used to select candidates for the withdrawal program. From Year 4, students engage in off level testing which allows the Academic Extension teacher to place students in the program where learning activities are appropriate to their ability levels. As well as the use of formal testing methods, student in-class performance and achievement is considered and feedback from class teachers and parents regarded in the intake of students. Children who have been identified in the top 10% of their year level are invited to attend the Academic Extension classes and are withdrawn from their regular classroom up to twice a week. They work on topics, projects, and research activities as well as learning the essential skills of research, inquiry, thinking skills and utilising thinking routines that will allow them to become independent learners with a high ability to problem solve. Participation in the withdrawal sessions allows the students to mix with others of like ability. Within these sessions, content is offered at advanced levels, including greater depth and complexity.

At St Peter’s, the provision of Academic Extension to those children who have been identified as being academically more able, or as having the potential to be so, means that there is a continual need for planning a differentiate curriculum that is academically rigorous and challenging. Hence, appropriate modification of content, process, product and / or learning environment provides a curriculum, which is qualitatively suited to the needs of the Academic Extension students.

By providing these Academic Extension forms of an inclusive curriculum across the year levels, learning experiences are designed to meet the specific learning needs of groups of students. The in class and withdrawal extension programs encourage high achievers, highly capable and gifted and talented students to strive for performance and achievement at an optimal level.

‘I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.” – Galileo Galilei

“Do not measure yourself with what you have accomplished, but by what you should have accomplished with your ability”. – John Wooden.