Mrs Hearne
Acting Head of Teaching and Learning

At Meriden, there are many ways in which the students are extended in their academic learning, such as extension activities, investigations, open-ended questioning, and opportunities for involvement in external competitions. Teachers have expertise in differentiation in the classroom to accommodate for diverse learning styles and progress. Students can engage in different learning activities that are not exclusively in the classroom such as excursions, workshops and Lateral Learning activities like the Global Citizens Program.

In 2022, two Cambridge IGCSE courses were offered to Year 9 students, to be completed at the end of 2023. These courses, Global Perspectives and Combined Science, are developed and managed in the United Kingdom but are offered across the world. At Meriden, they were offered within the curriculum areas of Geography and Science. This was a new program and involved students completing a compressed NSW Curriculum so that by the end of Year 10, students had completed both the NSW subject and the Cambridge course. This was quite a demanding pattern of study which we observed carefully to see how students would be able to cope with this increased workload.

In true Meriden style, the students took to this with enthusiasm and grace. Not only did the students complete both courses in the specified time, but they achieved outstanding results. This was particularly impressive given that it was the first time that we had been through this particular program. There were fifty-nine students who completed one or two of the Cambridge courses. In the Combined Science course, 98% of students received either A or A* grade. In the Global Perspectives course, 100% of students received either A or A* grade. This is an extraordinary result and validates their hard work and effort.

This week, the Year 10 Geography students extended their learning through an excursion to Sydney Zoo, and the Year 10 Global Perspective students were involved in an incursion. The incursion utilised the expertise of the Meriden staff and external presenters to assist with their final projects.

Mrs Sharna Kershaw, COLL High Potential Learning and Cambridge Coordinator, is commended for her efforts in coordinating this program, as are the Science and Social Science staff who have upskilled to teach these courses. With such successes, we are looking now at how we can expand this program in the future.