Students first at Wonthaggi SC

SUPPORTIVE ENVIRONMENT: Wonthaggi Secondary College principal Darren Parker inspires Year 12 students Micah Condron, Mea Pitts and Caitlyn Allan.

AS principal of the largest government school in Gippsland, Darren Parker strives to abide by the mantra “kids first”.
Wonthaggi Secondary College welcomed 1400 enrolments at the beginning of the school year and Mr Parker said it was a privilege to watch the school continue to grow.
Mr Parker began working for the college as a maths and science teacher in 1988.
He was assistant principal for 12 years before taking on the role of acting college principal.
He formally took over the role as college principal last year.
“I love my job. It’s an absolute privilege to come into work and influence the education of young people. I am blessed to be able to do the important day to day jobs, as well as having the opportunity to be involved with our new campus coming to fruition,” he said.
“Wonthaggi Secondary College is considered Bass Coast’s school and we get to support families from across the region. I am rapt with what we can offer these families. We offer a range of programs for students who intend to go straight to university or TAFE, and equally we have the resources to support the students who aren’t as straight forward in their thinking and are unsure of what is in their future.”
Mr Parker said teaching and learning practices had changed for the better.
“The key positives from the past remain positives but it is amazing to have access to technologies and the array of skills shown by our staff,” he said.
“The impact of the internet in terms of what we can do is incredible.”
Mr Parker said the sheer size of the school poses some challenges, but overall it is a positive to be eligible for more resources.
“With extra resources, we are better placed to try things other schools can’t do with a smaller cohort. The challenge is to ensure we offer we are supporting all of our students,” he said.
“I am lucky to have a great team backing me. Ross Bramley and Marg O’Donnell (campus principals) are synonymous with our community and just as importantly we are greatly supported by our assistant campus principals Leith Cummins and Phil Hughes. As a team, we provide that essential support to put our students’ needs first.”
Mr Parker said the greatest reward from the job is seeing the outcomes students can achieve when they finish.
“Whether it’s academic success or seeing a student overcoming their own personal challenges, it is lovely to see them reaching their goals,” he said.
“I recently saw a former student who became a comedian, Marcus Ryan. I have seen former students go on to have great careers and families. I’m even interviewed by former students.”
Mr Parker said is proud of the school’s reputation, which – along with population growth – is attributed to the soaring enrolments at the school.
“We want what’s best for our students and the enrolment rate gives us confidence that we are doing what’s best for the child and their families,” he said.

Short URL: http://thestar.com.au/?p=28735

Posted by on May 21 2019. Filed under Featured. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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