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IN THE MEDIA: How to make the most of Open Day (The Age)

Read more about why it is valuable to attend an Open Morning at Preshil, they take place all the time and we would love to see you there!

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On Saturday 11 February 2023, The Age printed some of our responses to questions about how to get the most out of Open Morning! Read our full responses below:

The school a student attends will have an impact on the rest of their life, meaning finding the right school to meet their specific needs and interests is a big decision. How early should you begin the search for a school for your child?

When it comes to enrolment in Melbourne, there is no such thing as ‘too early’ to start researching schools for your child. Melbourne has such a broad offering of educational philosophies and styles, from religious to secular, traditional to progressive, that the more curious you are, the broader your options may become. 

Your own family culture will also guide your consideration of the right school for your child. Having alignment between family culture and school culture is essential. At Preshil, we are a community of families and educators united by unwavering optimism for the future and the unquestioned capacity of each child. At Preshil, we offer a uniquely flexible and progressive approach to the International Baccalaureate (IB). Our parents, students and staff have come to know our school as a place that nurtures, challenges and celebrates the individual in an environment that inspires.

What opportunities does your school provide for prospective students to learn more about what you offer? (eg. do you have open days, tours, etc and could you please specify dates of any upcoming ones)

Preshil fosters an environment where students can discover their purpose and develop tools to can make an impact within the School community and beyond. Our Preshil community of learners are always innovating and questioning. Our students don’t need to wait until they graduate to make a difference in the world. They are eager to act on their passions and test their ideas, rather than just following established norms. They have the courage to reimagine a better future. They are out there now, actively engaging with leaders and influencing change.

At Preshil, we offer regular Open Mornings for our Kindergarten and Primary campus, and for our Secondary campus. Attending an Open Morning is an opportunity to see into our school, meet our children and our team and learn about our progressive approach to the International Baccalaureate Primary Years and Middle Years and Diploma Programmes. You will visit classrooms, have an opportunity to speak with our leadership team, and with our students. Nothing can replicate the sense of a school you garner from speaking with the students. We invite you to register for upcoming events by visiting our website (preshil.vic.edu.au).

Kindergarten and Primary School (Arlington Campus) Open Morning Dates:

  • Friday 10 February 2023 from 9.15am
  • Thursday 16 March 2023 from 9.15am
  • Tuesday 2 May 2023 from 9.15am

Secondary School (Blackhall Kalimna Campus) Open Morning Dates:

  • Wednesday 15 February 2023 from 9.15am
  • Tuesday 28 February 2023 from 9.15am
  • Wednesday 22 March 2023 from 9.15am

We also offer some unique opportunities to visit our school in the near future:

  • Middle Years Programme (Years 7 to 10) Subject Expo: Wednesday 8 March 2023 from 6.00pm
  • Life After Preshil (Alumni Panel): Thursday 9 March 2023 from 7.00pm
  • Primary Years Programme Curriculum Spotlight – A Celebration of Learning: Thursday 30 March 2023 from 9.30am
  • Diploma Programme Subject Expo: Tuesday 8 August 2023 from 3.30pm

What is it that you learn about a school at an open day (or on a tour) that you might not be able to discern from simply looking at the website?

When you visit our campuses, you will see the facilities, exceptional architecture and beautiful gardens that our students say feel like home. As a school that puts kindness, and compassion at the centre of its operations, you will see the warmth and vibrancy of the relationships students form with their teachers. Each child is recognised for who they truly are. In visiting classrooms, you will see how engaged and comfortable students are in the learning environment. Our students exist in a setting in which they are encouraged to develop their cultural and personal identities.

Who can parents and their children expect to speak with at an open day (or on a tour)? 

You will meet our Principal, Josh Brody, members of our Leadership Team and our teachers. You will also meet our students, who are forthright, aspirational and self-assured in the way that they reflect on their school experience. They are confident and honest in speaking with visitors. This year, Preshil introduced Long Day Care, and you may also get to meet our dynamic and expanded team of Kindergarten educators at an Arlington Campus tour!

What are the best questions to ask?

As an IB school, learning through inquiry is the best way to deepen understanding is to ask lots of questions, maintain curiosity, and know that all questions are the right questions to ask. Think of yourself as a lifelong learner, as our students do. Our school motto is Courage, and we often speak of this as being represented when we have the “Courage to Question”. We hope that visiting Preshil, emboldens parents to step up and question. At Preshil, student voice is celebrated. We are always seeking young changemakers who are committed to making a difference in their area of passion or innovative endeavours.

What are some of the more subtle signs you should be looking for to help determine whether the School and its culture is a ‘good fit’?

Parents should be alive to the signs which demonstrate that the school values align with their family values. Our children experience a setting in which rights and responsibilities are central to our community. Self-determination is balanced with kindness and consideration of others, collaboration and independence are key to learning within a community.

Who else should you consult when deciding on the right school?

Preshil insists that your child visit with us on a tour, and that they have an opportunity to engage with, and ask questions of, our students and teachers, if they are confident to do so. Age is no barrier, and we delight in all children bringing their curiosity with them on a visit.

If you attend an Open Day/tour and like what you see, what are your next steps?

Preshil takes a considered approach to enrolment and our Registrar, Nerel Ezra, will guide and support families through each step of the process. An application can be completed online or downloaded. A unique aspect of the enrolment process at Preshil is that we ask applicants to put together a profile celebrating the student and the family’s interest in joining our community. A recent applicant wrote, “After doing research on schools around our area, I am applying for Preshil because of the incredible working space and progressive philosophy of the school. I have attended an Open Morning and upon looking at the people, I saw myself a little. Sometimes I saw my smile, sometimes I saw people that worked like me, and if I’m honest, I saw where I could see myself flourish in a school environment. I believe Preshil will offer me a great path for my future, both socially, emotionally, and intellectually.”

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