Learning how to learn

At CBC Fremantle the journey from today’s boys to tomorrow’s gentlemen is carefully planned to foster a sense of belonging and identity in each of our young men. It is well articulated in our many communications, and is succinctly captured in the College’s Journey Document. At CBC, we live and breathe the journey metaphor as it so beautifully captures the sometimes rocky transition to adulthood and provides a sensible set of signposts along the way.

For the past few years, we have been expanding on the concept of the journey to extend to the academic progress of each student. Since my arrival at CBC, the clear focus on academic behaviours that teach our boys to learn has been clearly defined by the Academic Board and we are thrilled to have started to see real dividends being paid in the form of improved results for our students.

When I talk of results, I don’t necessarily mean just ATAR. Our 2019 results were the best we have had in 10 years at the College – and this includes ATAR, VET and TAFE certificates. At CBC we want every student to be positioned in the best possible place at graduation to launch into the next phase of his journey. Whether it be university, TAFE, the workplace or an apprenticeship, every student can be and has been assisted to achieve his personal best.

What is even more important to us all, and I know our parents will be relieved to hear this, the young men are being given permission to have a balanced lifestyle. There is more focus on quality rather than quantity of study, and this immediately loosens the shoulders and the load on our overly-stressed students. It almost beggars belief when I talk to students in my office when I say they can cut their home study hours in half, or more, and still achieve their goals. I feel like a bit of a fraud, really, as it’s all quite simple – but the secret is in building up the skills so when our boys reach the pointy end of their College senior years they know exactly where they are headed. That’s not to say that some of them still don’t have any idea of what they want to do – but they will know what they are capable of.

It’s very exciting.

I am indebted to the extraordinary commitment of our Academic Board, Heads of Learning Areas and CBC teachers. I’d particularly like to acknowledge Mr Alex Hall, Ms Kerry Faichney and the entire Academic Board, and of course our supportive and committed teachers.

To read more about our Academic Behaviours Journey, pop into our blog, The Road Less Travelled.

Mr Scott McDonnell
Deputy Principal: Teaching and Learning