Welcome to Solway Primary School, Ashburton

Message from the Principal


Welcome to the Solway Primary School website. Solway is committed to the development of globally aware, civically minded life-long learners. To achieve this, we recognise the importance of educating the ‘whole child’. This involves not only maintaining our high expectations of student achievement in Literacy and Numeracy, but encouraging our students to create and innovate through a rigorous and rich curriculum, based on a developmental approach. Achieved through the provision of quality specialist programs in The Arts, Science, Physical Education and Sport, Reading Recovery and Japanese Language, these programs are highly valued and supported by the school community. The specialist programs are further enhanced by a range of engaging and enriching whole school programs and extra-curricular activities both within and beyond the classroom.  A strong emphasis is given to educating our students to live healthy, balanced lifestyles through the promotion of healthy eating, exercise, leisure pursuits and active citizenship. 


We hope you enjoy reading about our school community and develop an understanding of Solway as a great place for learning and teaching.

 

As a result of our recent Capital Works program the school boasts modern flexible classroom spaces and outstanding specialist and administrative facilities for students and staff.  We are very proud of our renovated and new spaces – Reception area, Conference Centre, Staff Lounge, classrooms, teacher offices, Year 5/6 Learning hub, Science Centre, Performing Arts Centre and Uniform Shop – spaces the whole school community can use and enjoy. In addition, alterations at the front of the school in Winton Road provide a welcoming entrance for families and visitors.

 


 
5star logo


 

As a 5 Star Sustainable School under the ResourceSmart Australian Sustainable Schools Initiative (AuSSI Vic), Solway has completed the required practices and is performing at 5 Star 'Leadership' level.  We are very proud of our sustainability achievements; however our journey continues. To maintain our accreditation as a 5 Star School, our Sustainability teams – parents, staff and students, work hard to continue our achievements in the 5 areas of Water, Waste, Energy, Biodiversity and Curriculum.

 

We have developed and extended our Wildlife Corridor, while our new learning deck in the Kitchen Garden, and the nearby Sensory Garden, was a vision that became a reality with the support of the Bunnings Chadstone Store, and Ekologix who supplied materials and labour to complete the project. The whole school Inquiry throughline of ‘Sustainability’ ensures that this remains a focus for classroom studies across the school.

 

Our sustainability initiatives are achieved with the valued support and expertise of members of the wider school community. We are indeed fortunate to have a school community which is actively involved in many aspects of school life, including School Council. We appreciate the involvement of many parents who give generously of their time and energy.  As a part of the Solway community, families enjoy a warm and friendly environment, where the school values of Respect, Responsibility and Integrity are embedded into everything we do.

 

With a strong focus on Literacy and Numeracy, Solway implements a developmental curriculum across the school, transitioning to the Victorian Curriculum in 2016.  Regular reviewing of our Whole School Assessment Schedule ensures we have accurate information about student learning, placing them along the developmental continua in Literacy and Numeracy and planning effective learning interventions. This approach is recognised as critical for continuous improvement.

 

The school uses an Inquiry learning approach, with an increasing focus on understanding and respecting cultural diversity. We also encourage students to explore the history, geography, arts, economics and culture of our neighbouring countries in Asia and other parts of our world. Specialist classes in Japanese language and the annual Japanese homestay program are part of our ongoing engagement with Japanese culture at all levels. In 2014 and 2016, a group of students and staff participated in Study Tours to China. They returned with many experiences and insights to share about the Chinese people and their culture.

 

Students are encouraged to take an active role in their learning, by working with their teachers to set learning goals which are personalised, short and long term and carefully monitored. As students progress through the school this becomes more formalised.  Year 5 and 6 students are responsible for monitoring their progress towards set goals and for presenting their achievements to parents as part of the Student Led Conferences (SLCs). Students from Prep – 6 are supported to participate in SLCs, demonstrating an increasing responsibility for their learning as they move through the school.

 

The school is committed to developing the leadership capacity of our students, by recognising their strengths and providing opportunities to practise their leadership skills in a range of ways. All students in Years 5 and 6 are expected to take on areas of responsibility and are supported in their decision making. These students also participate in Public Speaking and Debating programs which develop confidence and skills in these important aspects of leadership.

 

The Student Representative Council (SRC) comprises students from Years 3 to 6, who come together under the guidance of a staff member to manage civic responsibility (social service) activities and fundraising by the students. They make decisions about which charities to support and coordinate student involvement. The SRC also liaises with classes to collate student feedback on issues important to them and provide an avenue for student voice throughout the school. They regularly report their activities to the School Council.

 

Solway has embraced a 1:1 Bring Your Own Device iPad program from Years 1-6 giving students easy access to mobile devices, including the school’s laptops. Along with the interactive whiteboards in each classroom, mobile technologies are interactive and engaging and are essential tools for each student to master. They allow the curriculum to be personalised and encourage students to be creative and innovative with their learning. Our Robot Club and Junior Robot Club offer robotics and coding opportunities for students to support the curriculum in this area.

 

In 2016, we achieved our accreditation as an eSMART School, recognising our journey to ensure our students have the skills and knowledge to practise cyber safety and understand their responsibilities when using technologies and interacting online. 


The school’s programs are designed to foster the natural creativity in all students, with Performing and Visual Arts part of the weekly program. Our Science Centre and specialist Science teacher ensure Science and Technology are important components of the curriculum and we encourage our students to participate in scientific exploration and design.

 

Solway boasts excellent achievements over more than 10 years in the Science Talent Search. The Science Talent Search (STS) is an annual, Science based competition open to all primary and secondary students in Victoria, Australia. Our STS entries are displayed at the school’s annual Science Fair. We are always impressed with the talented and innovative designs created by our students.

 

The promotion of healthy eating and living extends from classroom programs to healthy initiatives such as Ride2School Day and the Sporting Schools program. Encouraging students to be active is a priority, supported by the Physical Education classes, weekly Running Club, sporting activities and suggestions for the regular Homework requirements.


The Solway community is proud of its attractive and well maintained buildings and grounds, with an abundance of beautiful trees and varied play spaces. Recent renovations at our Out of School Hours Care(OSHC) Hall have provided a fully restored facility for our popular OSHC program.


School tours for prospective parents commence in Term 2, each Tuesday morning at 9:30am. Appointments are necessary and can be made through the School Office. A copy of the Prep 2018 Orientation / Transition Calendar is available on this website.

 

If you wish to find out more about our school, please contact the Office or email us on solway.ps@vic.edu.au to arrange a tour or have an Information Pack sent out. We look forward to hearing from you.


Julie Wilkinson

Principal