Winner’s school keeps kids engaged
ACCOLADES are pouring in for Western Port Secondary College principal Michael Devine who has won a 2017 Commonwealth Bank National Teacher award.
One of 12 recipients from across Australia, he was the only Victorian educator to be recognised.
Mr Devine and assistant principal Chris Quinn travelled to Sydney to accept the $45,000 prize which includes an international study tour of Singapore’s education system, a program to improve student outcomes, professional development and a series of master classes.
“It was very humbling but also recognises the work of so many people across the school,” said Mr Devine.
The principal has led a range of programs to boost engagement and keep students in school, resulting in improved NAPLAN and VCE median study scores. Additionally, no student has fallen below the national minimum standard in numeracy and the school’s retention rate has almost doubled.
“In 2011, the number of students in Year Seven who were there in Year 12 was 35 per cent. In 2016, it was 63 per cent,” Mr Devine said.
“This has put us above the state means.
“We’re taking the approach that one size does not fit all. Education is the ticket to breaking the cycle of poverty.