Features, News, School News

Come and meet the community at Yarra Valley Grammar

Prospective parents are more interested in meeting teachers, current students and other families at open days than they are about ATAR scores or buildings, believes Yarra Valley Grammar Principal, Dr Mark Merry. “Schools are replacing traditional social institutions such as parishes and local clubs, and parents are time poor and want to ensure school is a positive experience for their child and themselves. Parents know we’re doing well academically before they come to an open day, but they’re going to be standing at the hockey or orchestral recital with a hundred other families, so open days are really about choosing who your children are going to grow up with and who you’re going to interact with.”

Yarra Valley Grammar is running two Open Mornings this year; Saturday, March 18 and August 19. Tours commence at 9am, 10am and 11am, with ELC tours commencing at the ELC, and Junior, Middle and Senior Schools commencing at the George Wood Performing Arts Centre, and featuring Principal’s address, subject expo and student tour guides.

“Parents get the chance to talk to me, the teachers, learn about the facilities, curriculum and sport, but it’s the interaction with our students that’s important,” says Dr Merry. “They’re asked all sorts of things, and they’re our best ambassadors! Parents can get a sense of the quality of relationships, what the students are like and whether they speak highly of the school. What they really want to know is, will their child be happy at school every day?”

Meet the Principal tours will run on Wednesday, June 7 (Junior, Middle and Senior Schools, 9.30am from the George Wood Performing Arts Centre) and Thursday, June 8 (ELC, 9.30am).

Monthly School tours running on the first Tuesday of the month at 9am allow the opportunity to experience the school in action. These commence in May.

Bookings are essential for all open morning and tours.

The school’s Open Day on Saturday, 18 March is about “opening up our community to the wider community and allowing them to make their own judgements about the school,” says Dr Merry.

With children often spending most of their non-home time at school, parents are keen to ensure their own values are echoed within the school environment. “When the important messages are the same coming from all the significant adults in their lives as well as from their friends, it’s powerful,” says Dr Merry.

This year, Yarra Valley Grammar will introduce a new curriculum for high performing students in Years 6 – 9. The Levavi program, named after part of the school’s motto and meaning ‘to look up’ will offer advanced learning in Mathematics, Science, English and Humanities. “We’ve done a great job with the mainstream curriculum and for students requiring individual learning programs, and this new program should engage and challenge our more advanced students. The Levavi program will broaden the educational opportunities for our students” says Dr Merry.

Construction of two new buildings will begin this year; an indoor aquatic centre and a new learning centre which will encompass a library, research centre, chapel and reception area. “We are undertaking an ambitious rebuilding and refurbishment program to continue to provide world-class facilities for our students, early learning to Year 12. The most important components of a school however, are great teachers and great teaching, and the new facilities provide the environment for this to happen.”

For more information on Yarra Valley Grammar open days and tours go to www.yvg.vic.edu.au


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