At Edmund Rice College we recognise the unique educational needs of gifted and talented students. Our College develops the potential of gifted students and provides high-quality learning and teaching experiences in an authentic Catholic environment.
Our students become critical and reflective learners who engage with the world in a context of service and solidarity. For gifted students this means we’re committed to:
- encouraging personal excellence,
- encouraging and assisting gifted students achieve their potential,
- raising student and parent awareness to understand opportunities and challenges for gifted students,
- meeting the needs of all gifted students across all classrooms at our College,
- providing teachers with professional learning to meet the needs of the gifted students.
The College offers Enrichment classes in English, Mathematics and Science. These are offered in Years 7 to 10. Enrichment experiences are also offered in all Key Learning Areas.
Research shows that enrichment is appropriate for gifted students. It is recognised that enrichment has three levels of complexity appropriate for gifted students. They include:
- exposure (new ideas and skills),
- extension (fuller development of the regular curriculum) and
- concept development (in-depth exploration of a concept).
Enrichment learning experiences promote:
- Depth, breadth, complexity and abstractness
- Project-based learning and independent projects
- Fast-paced learning
- Critical and creative thinking skills
- Investigating real world problems
Placement in the Enrichment Program at Edmund Rice College in Year 7 is based on a number of factors. These include student results in the UNSW Global Scout test, Year 5 NAPLAN results, information provided on the enrolment application, additional information provided by parents/caregivers and the primary school.
Acceleration allows our students to move through the curriculum at a faster pace and can be implemented in a number of ways. The College offers the following types of acceleration for students when appropriate:
- Subject acceleration
- Whole year acceleration
- Curriculum compacting
Beyond the Classroom
Edmund Rice College has established activities for students to extend and challenge themselves. These include:
Tournament of the Minds
Tournament of the Minds gives teams of students the opportunity to solve authentic, open-ended challenges that foster creative, divergent thinking. It develops collaborative enterprise, excellence and teamwork. Students solve challenges in the disciplines of The Arts, Language Literature, Social Sciences and STEM.
Chess enhances students’ problem solving and cognitive abilities, memory and strategic thinking. All students are invited to compete for a place in the Edmund Rice College Chess team. The Chess team competes in the NSW Junior League interschool competition, both at home and away games throughout the year. Students also have the opportunity to compete in the Sydney Chess Academy Interschool Chess heat held at Edmund Rice College.
For those simply wanting to play for fun, there is an enthusiastic and welcoming community of students who play chess at recess and lunch every day.
Lions Youth of the Year
Lions Youth of the Year is offered to students at the College and is designed to encourage student interest in leadership and the qualities required to take an active and constructive role in the community. Students meet in fellowship to exchange ideas and meet professionals from community service organisations.
The ability to speak in public is one of the most useful life skills. Our students gain expertise through a range of Public Speaking competitions including Rostrum Voice of Youth, Quota Youth of the Year and the UN Voice of Youth.
Debating offers students the chance to practice their public speaking skills as well as argument development and teamwork. Students participate in workshops run by the University of Wollongong, and they have multiple opportunities to debate at the Catholic Schools Debating Association (CSDA) regional tournament days and the Lumen Christi competition against St Mary’s Star of the Sea, Wollongong.
The da Vinci Decathalon
The da Vinci Decathlon is an academic competition designed to challenge and stimulate young minds. Students compete in teams across the disciplines of Engineering, Mathematics and Chess, Code Breaking, Art and Poetry, Science, English, Ideation, Creative Producers, Cartography and Legacy.
The Edmund Rice College Robotics Club stimulates creative and technological thinking in a fun environment. The Club participates in competitions and challenges. The goal is to advance Robotics, encourage teamwork and friendship, exchange ideas, exhibit accomplishments and develop an ongoing interest in Robotics.