Maxine McSherry

Kangaroo Island Community Education (KICE) was formed in 2005 as a multi campus school from the three KI Area Schools – Penneshaw, Parndana and Kingscote. The background of each campus, as they are now known, is very rich, and connects with Kangaroo Island’s history and their unique qualities and endeavours which reflect our island community.

The revised model of education delivery is an outcome of the community initiated “Review of Care, Education and Training Across Kangaroo Island”. The final report of the committee (August, 2003) has a whole of island perspective on delivering services from birth through to post school training. Consequently it is important that our school works collaboratively with Children’s Services and Penneshaw Preschool along with the KI TAFE Learning Centre. The KI Partnership is strong, dynamic and always has children and young people as our central focus.

At KICE we aim to meet the vision encapsulated through the review which includes these key points:

  • Education on KI is birth to adult
  • A collaborative and cooperative model will serve KI students more efficiently and equitably
  • The new model of education provides the opportunity for a visionary and futures oriented perspective
  • KI is recognised as a learning centre with links to the whole community with its unique resources, environment, people and profile
  • Learning opportunities are integrated and interactive across the curriculum offering relevant programs and promoting lifelong learning
  • Curriculum options will be enhanced with a focus on students staying on KI without being disadvantaged

Our school is very complex with approx. 700 students located widely across the island and supported through a network of 15 school buses to attend their local campus. The KICE facilities include hostel accommodation, the KI Aquaculture Skills Centre (which produces barramundi as a teaching and learning centre) at the Parndana Campus and a 10 hectare Agriculture Science ‘block’. Two Recreation Halls and a Performing Arts Centre across three campuses at a cost of $4.5million were completed as part of the Building Education Revolution (BER) program. A further $3million was accessed to provide Trade Training Centre facilities across two sites. This has enabled the school to develop a much broader curriculum including 8 VET programs and multiple pathways for our students to achieve the SACE.
Recent achievements and initiatives have brought considerable recognition for our school in particular achieving three SA Regional Awards in Education, two Area Schools Best Practice Awards as well as recognition in several other specific education and leadership areas.
As an Access Asia school we have implemented a significant change in curriculum over the last decade to include Asia and Australia’s engagement with Asia, currently in line with new Australian Curriculum. Out school has recently embraced the China Engagement Strategy with Mandarin being taught in the Primary years. KICE has won Becoming Asia Literate Grants, Film Awards and recognition of Best Practice in Asian Studies.

Our school is committed to the development of significant student learning opportunities available through interactive technologies through the utilisation of laptops/iPads for teachers/students, interactive whiteboards in classrooms, video conferencing facility in each campus and the expansion of curriculum and connections with mainland and international schools to enable online learning.

Being in an isolated/rural community with a water gap brings unique opportunities for students, staff and our island community.
Kangaroo Island Community Education acknowledges our students and their families, local industry and employers as partners in the process of building the connections between our school and community.

Maxine McSherry