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Mathematics

Aims and Objectives

The Mathematics Faculty at Marist College Eastwood exists as an integral element in the organisation of a school which strives to offer to all students an education which is Marist, Catholic and Christian in nature. As such, the teachers in the Mathematics Faculty aim to do their part in imparting this Christian instruction through their Mathematics teaching and through their attitudes and conduct towards their students at all times. These attitudes are reflected in:

* A fundamental respect towards the students they teach.
* Care with respect to the preparation and organisation of lessons
* Willingness to communicate with the parents of students, either in large meetings or personal interviews, regarding the education of their sons.

Since our particular subject is one of the foundation skills needed in any society, we are committed to the following aims:

* To give each pupil a firm grasp of the fundamental operations of arithmetic so that he can adequately perform every-day calculations required in day-to-day living.
* To develop the ability to think logically, to reason things out at a level commensurate with the development of the pupil.
* To develop the ability to communicate in both written and verbal forms.
* To give each pupil the satisfaction of having successfully studied the subject at his level of ability.
* To prepare senior students for further studies beyond Secondary Schooling.
* To develop the ability to use abstract ideas and concepts.
* To develop an appreciation, no matter how elementary, of the importance of mathematics in today’s world and the part it is playing in its future development.

Organisation

Stage 4: Year 7

There are six classes graded according to demonstrated ability.

Students are initially graded based upon an externally administered test the year before enrolment.

Classes will be regraded at the end of Semester One to form two divisions. MA1 and MA2 will be in Division A whilst MB3 to MB6 will be in Division B. If it is deemed appropriate MB3 will be graded in the top division but this will be determined year by year. If it becomes apparent that a student is glaringly misplaced early on in the year and that his classroom performance suggests a higher or lower class, then the student will be moved .

These two graded Divisions will both follow the New South Wales syllabus for the Australian Curriculum with Division A providing a greater challenge for the more gifted students.  Continual monitoring of individual performance takes place to ensure that boys are placed in a Division and class which best suits them.

The grade received on the Semester Report posits each student relative to all students in the cohort.

Stage 4: Year 8

There are five graded classes in two graded divisions. These two graded Divisions will both follow the New South Wales syllabus for the Australian Curriculum with Division A providing a greater challenge for the more gifted students. The particular aim is to position them for the 5.3 Pathway in Year 9. As in Year 7, continual monitoring takes place to ensure that boys are placed in the appropriate Division and class.

The grade received on the Semester Report posits each student relative to all students in the cohort.

Stage 5: Year 9

There are 5 grades classes:

9M3A and 9M3B following the 5.3 Pathway
9M2C and 9M2D following the 5.2 Pathway
9M1E following the 5.1 Pathway

The progress of each student is followed closely to ensure that they are achieving at appropriate levels for the pathway outcomes. The opportunity remains for boys to be promoted to the advanced pathway (5.3) if they show the required attitude and ability, although such a change can be problematic because of the different nature of the work.

The grade received on the Semester Report posits each student relative to all students in the cohort.

Stage 5: Year 10

Year 10

There are 5 graded classes:

10M3A and 10M3B following the 5.3 Pathway
10M2C and 10M2D following the 5.2 Pathway
10M1E following the 5.1 Pathway

The grade received on the Semester Report posits each student relative to all students in the cohort.

In terms of preparation for Stage 6 as a general rule students should be thinking about the following Mathematics Course levels

10M3A  Advanced or Extension 1
10M3B  Advanced or Standard 2
10M2C  Standard 2
10M2C  Standard 2 or Standard 1
10M1E  Standard 2 or Standard 1

Only in exceptional circumstances will the Head of Mathematics allow a student to undertake Advanced Mathematics (formerly known as Mathematics or 2 unit) if they have been studying 5.2 Mathematics in Year 10. The Head of Mathematics will consult with Mathematics faculty staff and will informally interview all students in Year 10 in order to share teacher recommendations.

The mantra is “Right course, right level.”

It should be noted that the Stage 6 Mathematics curriculum will change significantly from the start of Year 11 2018. (see below)

Stage 6: Year 11 (HSC Preliminary Course)

In 2018 new syllabi (with name changes) begin in HSC Preliminary Course. The courses which will be offered are

Extension 1
Advanced
Standard

Please note that NESA (NSW Education Standards Authority) indicated on Friday April 21st 2017 that Advanced and Ext 1 and 2 will not be implemented until 2019.

Stage 6: Year 12 (HSC Course)

Extension 2
Extension 1
Advanced
Standard 2 (Board developed-ATAR)
Standard 1 (Board endorsed- Non ATAR)

Note: The number of classes in each level is determined by student demand and student ability.

In previous years we have accelerated students (with some success) in order that they might sit Mathematics (2 unit) in Year 11. We will continue to consider this as an option if it is warranted and a feasible model can be found. The possibility with the new syllabi may not allow for this in the future. Acceleration should not be considered as automatically taking place.

Students at Marist College Eastwood have performed with distinction in HSC examinations for many a time. Our results in this statewide examination are regularly among the best in the Sydney Archdiocese and always well above the State average.

The 2016 Etchings report states

“This identification of our excellence was further demonstrated in our 2016 HSC results which delivered: a school mean 6.76% above the state mean in General Mathematics 2; an amazing 16 band 6’s in 2 Unit Mathematics (including seven from the eleven accelerated Year 11 students) where no student was lower than a Band 4 and included a remarkable 99 from Will Aching, an accelerated Year 11 student who was placed 16th in the state; and where none of the 18 students studying Extension 1 and 2 scored less than an E3 and where 7 achieved the highest band E4.  In addition, the Board Endorsed General Mathematics 1 course, continues to gain momentum as students appreciate its value in preparing them for vocational and trade related positions”

Interested stake-holders should also access relevant data at the My School website.

https://www.myschool.edu.au/StudentGain/Index/106860/MaristCollegeEastwood/43497/2016

The data here clearly shows the growth in student performance in numeracy, comparable to and exceeding many schools with similar demographics. In 2016 Year 9 supplied an average score of 637 which was an average learning gain of 45.This is hard to produce given that the learning base is in itself so high. No student in Year 7 or Year 9 was below the minimum national standard. 80% of our students in Year 9 2016 would have satisfied the new requirement of a Band 8 or better in Numeracy for the Award of HSC.

Boys at the College are also encouraged to participate in ventures such as the Australian Mathematics Competition (AMC) and the Mathematics Challenge for Young Australians (MCYA) .The Mathematical Olympiad may also be offered to our most gifted students.

These outstanding results can be found in archived newsletters and previous copies of Etchings

We are confident that the combination of a dedicated and experienced staff and a commitment to the fundamentals will continue this trend of success at the College in the future.

David Cooper
Head of Mathematics
March 2017

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