Middle School (Year 7 – Year 9)
Welcome to Middle School
Be inspired, be challenged, become the best you can be!
Middle school students are emerging adolescents who are experiencing profound changes in the intellectual, physical, social and emotional areas of their lives. These changes call for unique learning environments where students can mature, achieve success and be challenged at their own developmental rate. The design of the Middle School creates a supportive and progressive learning environment for students in Years 7 – 9 through the provision of specific academic, co-curricular and pastoral care programs that are sensitive to the developmental needs of young adolescents. The Middle School at Ursula Frayne Catholic College promotes academic rigour in the core subjects while stimulating the interests of students through the provision of an extensive array of elective subjects. The aim of Middle Schooling at Ursula Frayne Catholic College is to assist all students to achieve their potential in their life long learning journey.
The Middle School – A place where students can feel happy and safe in a caring environment.
About Middle Schooling
Ursula Frayne Catholic College has established the Middle School as a separate sub-school entity – “a school within a school”.
The term “Middle Schooling” is used to describe a particular phase of a young person’s formal education. This important phase bridges the gap between the traditional primary and secondary approaches to education with a view to responding more effectively to the specific developmental needs of students in the upper primary and lower secondary years.
With the school motto “Centred in Christ” as the foundation stone for all we do, the overarching philosophy is best summed up in the aspirational description of a student graduate from Frayne:
“Upon graduation from Ursula Frayne Catholic College, students should be faith filled young people who are respectful of themselves, others, their community and the environment that sustains them. They should also be resilient, have a love of learning and be ready to take their place in and make a positive contribution to the adult world beyond school.”
To this end, the Middle School curriculum at Ursula Frayne Catholic College is designed to be specifically sensitive to the developmental needs of young adolescents. The College strives to foster an environment based on harmonious working relationships, responsibility and mutual respect. The goal of the College is to nurture and develop our students into creative and critical thinkers instilled with a lifelong love of learning, who will be active citizens striving to create a just society.
As one of the first Catholic College’s in Western Australia to embrace Middle Schooling, Ursula Frayne Catholic College is proud to be at the cutting edge of educational innovation. The College is committed to ensuring that students from the Middle School, instilled with a Middle School education, will be well equipped for their future academic endeavours in the Senior School and beyond.
Middle School Objectives
The Middle School structure aims to ensure that students should be better able to:
- Make a stress free transition from primary school to the Middle School environment.
- Adjust to some of the physical, social, emotional, spiritual and intellectual changes taking place in their lives as they move into early adolescence.
- Grow towards independence whilst still having the security needed in many personal relationships.
- Gain experience in leadership and decision making and in accepting responsibility for their decisions.
- Progressively develop a sense of personal and social values which become an integral part of their life.
Current research indicates that the workforce of the 21st century is going to be one where job mobility and retraining are dominant features. To this end, the Middle School curriculum will have the goal of promoting life-long learning and dealing with change.
The main objectives of the curriculum are:
- Promoting a high standard of Literacy and Numeracy.
- Providing students with organisational skills considered essential for successful learning in and beyond the Middle School environment.
- Developing in students the ability to think creatively and critically.
- Developing in students the ability to be independent learners.
- Providing opportunities for student-centred and enquiry-orientated learning.
- Providing students with an appreciation for teamwork and self motivation.
- Incorporating technology into the curriculum as an important learning tool.
- Providing for more integrated learning across the curriculum and thus increasing the relevance of what is being studied.
- Meeting the special needs of individual students by identifying and assisting students who find learning difficult.
- Incorporating a degree of choice for the student in regard to what is studied.
Structure of the Middle School
There is no particular way to ‘do’ middle-schooling. Instead, there are a set of values and principles which underpin middle-schooling practices. Ursula Frayne Catholic College promotes the balanced development of our students within a community atmosphere. Young people need support and encouragement during the ‘middle years’. This is put into practice in the Middle School through a caring but disciplined environment designed to make students feel safe and confident to develop their potential. The Middle School structure at Ursula Frayne Catholic College has been developed in response to the particular needs of our students.
The pastoral support of students is an important element of the middle‐schooling approach to the education of 11 – 14 year olds. To improve the care for each child, the Middle School is divided into three separate Clusters; Joachim, Rice and MacKillop. Each Cluster is comprised of a Cluster Leader who is responsible for the overall coordination and organisation of their Cluster. The Cluster Leader works closely with the Form teachers who are the link between school and home for general information concerning the student’s academic progress, study, attitude, attendance and general happiness at school.
The Form Teacher is also the link between school and home for general information concerning the student’s academic progress, study, attitude, attendance and general happiness at school.
Parent-Staff communications are an integral component of the Pastoral Care Programme for students at Ursula Frayne Catholic College and the Form Teacher or the parent is encouraged to initiate communication by use of notes in the student diary, telephone, letter, interview or e-mail.
Clusters and Pastoral Care
Ursula Frayne Catholic College promotes the balanced development of our students within a community atmosphere.
Young people need support and encouragement during the ‘middle years’. This is put into practice in the Middle School through a caring, but disciplined environment designed to make students feel safe and confident to develop their potential.
The teaming of students and teachers into groups is an important element of the middle-schooling approach to the education of 11-14 year olds. To improve the care for each child, the Middle School is divided into three separate Clusters; Joachim, Rice and MacKillop.
Each Cluster has a Cluster Leader and staff especially devoted and trained to provide for the needs of the students at this particular stage of their development. The teachers in each Cluster team form a cross-curricular team in which each teacher brings to the Cluster specialist knowledge of one of the core subject areas of Religious Education, English, Mathematics, Society and Environment and Science.
Each member of the Cluster team is also responsible for a Form Group and the Cluster Leader is responsible for the overall co-ordination and organisation of their Cluster.
To guide students, clear expectations of their rights and responsibilities are set down.
|Joachim Cluster||MacKillop Cluster||Rice Cluster|
To ensure each individual student is heard the Middle School Leaders are elected on an annual basis. The Leaders in each Cluster represent and speak for the students in Years 7, 8 and 9 on matters impacting upon all students in the Middle School.
Student Leaders have many functions but the most important is that of modelling the appropriate behaviour of an Ursula Frayne Catholic College student in all aspects of College life.
The relevance of the curriculum to students is at the centre of middle-schooling strategies. The Middle School curriculum at Ursula Frayne Catholic College has evolved in response to the particular needs of our students in Years 7 to 9. Central to our curriculum is the philosophy of creating life-long 21st Century learners who use their potential and talents in the service of others, and for the benefit of themselves.
The Middle School curriculum comprises two components:
- Core Program
The subjects studied in the Core Program are:
- Religious Education
- Humanities and Social Sciences
- Health and Physical Education
- Languages – Japanese and Italian in Years 7 and 8 only
All the subjects and learning opportunities in this component of the curriculum are compulsory for all students.
The Electives are offered in Year levels thus allowing students to build their capacity and expertise as they progress through the Middle School.
- Language is compulsory in Years 7 and 8 only. Language is optional for students in Year 9.
- In Year 7 students will undertake eight Electives, allowing them to make an informed decision when choosing in Year 8.
- Students in Years 8 and 9 must then select one subject from The Arts and one subject from Technology and Enterprise.
The Curriculum Handbook