Honours Classes at the southport school - preparatory school
Applications are now Closed for 2013
Honours Program Timeline 2013
The Preparatory School
At TSS Preparatory School the Primary Years (P-6) are distinctive. Where
secondary and tertiary education are increasingly organised around subjects and
disciplines, we believe primary schooling should be organised around children.
To this end our Preparatory School classrooms are characterised by enjoyment,
engagement, discovery and curiosity. Our highly skilled teachers form close and
sustained relationships with their students and have a deep understanding of how
boys learn. They combine careful attention to the stage of development of each
student and set high standards for all. They balance the need for explicit
teaching of core concepts, knowledge and skills, with innovative ways of
encouraging cooperative work, research, problem solving and student management
of the various elements of their learning.
The TSS selective Prep Honours Classes are unique in that they are purposefully
designed to offer academic boys a chance to work with like minds, at pace. One
thing we know about boys is that a busy boy is a productive boy and a productive
boy is a happy boy. Gifted and high academic achievers often need greater
flexibility than the traditional year level program permits. Our two Honours
Multi-age classes (Years 3/4 and Years 5/6) afford these students innovative
opportunities to experience curriculum beyond their years. The learning
environment will challenge and support the boys to pursue their aspirations and
special abilities. The Honours classes empower the boys to take risks, think
creatively and develop independent learning and the pursuit of excellence.
Education of the Whole Boy
The Prep Triangle of Interdependence provides the framework through which we
provide a curriculum designed for the ‘Whole Boy’. This develops the boys’
self-reliance and motivation and encourages them to become life-long learners.
The Honours Boy...
Is a high academic achiever who loves learning and challenge at an accelerated
pace. Like all proud TSS students he actively embraces the myriad of curriculum
and co-curricular opportunities that the Preparatory School has to offer. Our
key focus is to develop students with:
Fully Integrated Learning
Boys in the Honours Class program will be fully integrated into the life of the
Preparatory School and will join with their year level peers for outdoor
education, assemblies, chapel services, special events and House activities. We
believe that boys who are academically talented enjoy the broader relationships
that this integration fosters. The selective Honours Classes are two multi-age
groups (Years 3/4 and Years 5/6). This multi-age philosophy as been purposefully
selected as it provides the flexibility to create a learning environment best
suited to the needs of these students.
The Southport School Difference
- Two Honours Classes fully integrated into the life of the Preparatory School.
- Curriculum differentiation by highly skilled educators.
- Experienced and dedicated school leadership team who understand the needs of high achieving
- Classroom clusters with like-minded students.
- Significant percentage of boys, Reception to Year 12, actively engaged in extension programs.
- A clearly defined pathway for academics from Reception to Year 12.
- Carefully managed ‘acceleration’ pathways.
- G&T withdrawal program and one day and holiday courses for high achievers.
- Friends of G&T Parent Support Group
Honours Classes Q and A
1. How many Honours Classes will there be?
Two multi-age classes. One for boys in Years 3 and 4 and one for boys in Years 5
2. How many boys can be placed in the Honours Classes?
Between 10 and 12 boys in each year level 3, 4, 5 and 6 will be selected for the
3. Are these classes for Gifted and Talented boys?
Some boys identified as G and T may suit these classes, but others may
not. Students in the Honours Classes must be able to work successfully at pace
and demonstrate strong academic achievement across all key areas of the
4. Who are the classes for?
The Honours Classes are for boys who are high academic achievers across the
They do not have to be identified as G and T, but they do need to
have a strong work ethic and demonstrated high achievement.
5. How are boys selected for the class?
Boys will undertake an assessment in English and
Mathematics. Their prior academic record will be taken into account and they
will undertake an interview.
6. Will the boys interact with the rest of their year level?
Absolutely. The two Honours Classes will not be isolated in any way. The boys
will join with their year level cohort for outdoor education programs, sport and
cultural activities, across year level numeracy and literacy classes and of
course their friendship groups.
7. Can boys move in and out of the Honours Classes?
Definitely. At the end of each year all classes are reviewed and new class
groups are sorted based on the needs of the boys. In general, boys would remain
in the Honours Class for the two years of the ‘stage’ – either 3/4 or 5/6, but
if the class structure does not suit them or they are not achieving at an
appropriate level they may exit the program.
8. What if my son is a high achiever and he is not selected for an Honours Class
or does not wish to be in one?
All classes will continue to cater for all boys levels. With 20% of boys at TSS
Prep identified as Gifted and Talented and many more achieving at very high
levels, there will be many boys in all classes who work at an accelerated
standard. The Honours Classes will enable a group of a particular type of
learners to be clustered together, but there will continue to be other clusters
of boys in each classroom representing the full range of abilities. Additionally
as is current practise, ‘streaming’ or grouping the boys into ability based
groups for either literacy or numeracy will continue to occur at those year
levels where it best suits the boys’ learning needs.
9. Who will teach these classes and will they have any special knowledge and
skills with regard to extending student learning?
The two class teachers in the Honours program will be selected from the team of
talented staff we have at TSS Prep. All Prep School staff have undertaken
professional learning in the provision of a differentiated curriculum, the
teaching of higher order thinking skills, the characteristics of high achieving
academic students and in the planning and preparation of curriculum from the new
Australian Curriculum documents. As is the case with all classes, the teaching
staff will be appointed based upon their specific skill set and understandings
of the educational needs of boys at their differing ages and stages of