The Emmaus Centre supports the needs of a diverse range of students in the St Peter’s community.
The Emmaus Centre is drawn from the story of the disciples who do not recognise Jesus as he joins them on the journey to Emmaus (Luke 24). The story from Luke’s Gospel tells us that they do not recognise Jesus but walked the journey with him and then invited him to join them and share a meal. It is not until he joins them for supper and breaks bread with them that they recognise him as Jesus.
The challenge for us in this scripture is to open our eyes and awaken to the experiences and challenges that surround us daily. We are encouraged to believe that every moment of life is an opportunity to encounter God, and like the disciples, God often speaks to us ‘along the way’, in the very ordinary experiences of our day; perhaps often through the most unlikely people or unexpected events. It is very easy to open our door to those we know and are friends with. For us, it is a reminder to recognise Jesus in all that we do especially in our work with students. The challenge is to be inclusive of all in our community just as the disciples were to the unknown Jesus.
Students who benefit from the Emmaus Centre include:
PRINCIPLES OF OPERATION
The support a student receives is primarily based on their level of need. A students’ level of need may fit in at any stage as shown in the ‘Continuum of Support’. This can be at the lower levels of need that may require teacher awareness of appropriate strategies up to students who may require Life Skills syllabus outcomes to be delivered in a separate classroom setting. At St Peter’s, that level of support is determined through a collaborative planning process involving teachers, parents, learning support staff and speciality advice from the CSO (as required).
Staffing within the Emmaus Centre fluctuates each year depending on the needs of the students enrolled in the school. We have eight Learning Support aides, four Learning Support Teachers and one Indigenous Support aide. This allocation includes the following staff members with roles that include, but are not limited to:
Learning Support Coordinator
Learning Support Teachers
Learning Support Assistants
VENUE & RESOURCES
The Emmaus Centre is housed in Marcellin Place in rooms MG4 , MG5 and MG7. MG4 is a full size class room and is used as a support centre for students who receive individual or small group assistance. MG4 has a range of assistive technologies including a SMART Board, laptops and iPads that each have a range of support software programs and apps. The room also has a mixture of furnishings to suit the needs of the activities. MG5 is a purpose classroom that is staffed full-time for children who have discrete Life Skills classes. MG7 is used for meetings, individual student assessments and small group work. Students also use the adjacent library space as required. These spaces allow for great versatility in the ways in which we can help our students.
The Learning Support Team
The Learning Support Team provides students with the support required to help them to participate in and contribute to College life. The team includes the Assistant Principal – Welfare, Learning Support Coordinator, School Counsellor and Careers Adviser. When a student with a specific learning need or disability is identified, a meeting with the Learning Support Team is usually the first step in supporting the student. The aim of a Learning Support team meeting is to gather as much information about the student as possible and discuss the ways in which the College as a whole and individual teachers can assist the student. The meeting will also give advice to the student that could help them to work effectively in Years 11 and 12 and can also involve looking at subject selections, pathways, careers advice and information about Disability Provisions, if appropriate.
Individual Health Care Management Plans, Mental Health Care Plans & Response Plans
The Learning Support Team also meets to develop Individual Health Care Plans and Response Plans for students as needed. These are created with input from parents, carers and external support services to help ensure the wellbeing and safety of every student in our care, so it is important that the College is informed of any health condition that a student may have.
Learning Support Plans
After the Learning Support Team gets to know and understand the specific needs of a student, a Learning Support Plan/Individual Education Plan (IEP) is developed and this information is distributed to staff as appropriate.