Macquarie College (MC), Newcastle (NSW), recently hosted educators and school leaders from across the country who were part of the Future Schools Hunter tour. With more than 100 member schools, the alliance is formed by a community of innovative educational leaders.
At the event, MC executive staff shared the journey of innovation and change that the school has been on, along with the importance of having a strategic intent to guide pastoral care, learning and growth in a school setting.
Visitors enjoyed diving into areas such as the stage one investigations program and the leadership restructure. They also learned about the recent implementation of vertical homerooms in the senior school, all within the context of an explicitly faith-based, Adventist school setting. A delicious vegetarian lunch was prepared and served by the Year 11 Hospitality students.
The school has recently reinvented several traditional classroom spaces as design labs to assist in delivering the MC X program—which began to be developed in 2019 after much research and addressed the challenge to continue improving educational experiences for the students.
Design thinking in MC X helps students research, define, ideate, prototype and test their ideas and creations, a skill that can be applied to all learning areas in education. The classes allow students to solve real-world problems, employing skills such as communication and collaboration to provide excellent solutions. Entrepreneurial spirit is fostered through the regular MC Markets, where junior school students design and manufacture products to sell to the school community.
The intentional changes to the Macquarie College program have resulted in a solid enrolment growth, with more than 1000 young people now attending the school’s P-12 program, where they are daily experiencing future-focused Adventist education.