— DISCOVER OUR
We believe that young children are natural learners, filled with curiosity and a desire to explore the world around them. Our Prep program is designed to harness this innate curiosity and build upon the knowledge and skills that students have gained from their early years in the home and kindergarten.
MECS Primary’s approach to discipline follows the principles of Restorative Practice which recognises and helps students understand that relationships are damaged when behaviour goes wrong, or poor choices are made. MECS students are learning to respect themselves and their fellow students, teachers and parents. Students learn to take responsibility for their actions and understand that there are consequences for our behaviour. This approach acknowledges each person’s perspective, helps to build relationships and helps students work towards restoring the problem. Students learn that issues and problems can be worked through resulting in forgiveness, healing and restoration. We believe that this process is in line with a Christian perspective – we forgive each other as God forgives us. We seek restoration of relationships, as God does with us.
All classes use a positive and explicit model for behaviour that affirms the school’s key values. Each class establishes ‘Anchor charts’ for behavioural expectations, defining explicit behaviour that is expected within the classroom and school. Students are modelled the behaviour and practice it until it becomes automatic. Classrooms operate on mutual respect and high expectations.
Many parents worry about how their child will be treated at school by their peers, and how their child will treat others. During the primary years, children are learning and developing the skills of getting along with each other and treating each other with respect and kindness. We see these as essential aspects of each child’s education and we enhance this through specific social skills programs at each level.
We have a 30 minute morning recess where all our Primary school enjoy each other’s company. We have a 40 minute lunch play time. We intentionally stagger lunch playtime so everyone has the opportunity to play with peers and enjoy all aspects of the playground. Younger students in Prerp to Year 2 have first lunch play and Years 3-6 have second play time. Children can play on the oval, asphalt area for down ball, amphitheatre, or seek quieter areas where there are picnic tables for card games, drawing or imaginative play. Younger children enjoy the MCG (MECS Creation Garden) and sand pit.
We are often asked by parents about our approach to ‘Bullying’. Bullying is, by definition, ongoing and repeated, resulting in some sort of trauma and sometimes physical harm to a person. In no way does this type of behaviour fit into MECS, and into our commitment to love one another, as God has called us to do. We take any reports of bullying and cruel behaviour seriously and listen to all children involved to establish what happened or is happening. In keeping with our partnership approach, parents are involved where appropriate. We value assisting our students to become caring, cooperative problem solvers through counselling, parent input, professional assistance and teacher input. We are proactive in teaching and developing positive relationship building in our school.
We have a strong commitment to our environment and caring for God’s world – including our bodies! We support and encourage our students to be eating healthy, unprocessed food with minimal or no wrappings. MECS Primary is like a ‘National Park’. We have a ‘rubbish in, rubbish out’ policy. Students are encouraged to bring rubbish free lunchboxes, and whatever personal rubbish is brought to school, also goes home.