In 2019, James Fallon High School launched an Academy for Entrepreneurial Learning, based on the Big Picture Australia Design. The Academy of Learning places the learner and their interests at the centre of their curriculum. It involves a personalised learning plan, where the teacher becomes an advisor on that learning pathway. In this plan, the curriculum requirements are met in the way that the student wants to learn them, with very flexible and personal methods. Students in Year 9 will engage in “outlearning” which involves students learning outside of the school through working with a mentor in the community. This can involve wide fields, including university, where portfolios are the basis for university entry, rather than the HSC.
This design is one that is proven to be engaging and rigorous for students. There are 50 schools across Australia that have this design, with 7 NSW Public High Schools becoming Big Picture Schools over the last 10 years. The design originated in The Met Schools in the US, and there are 50 schools in Australia where this design is implemented. It is real-world, future-focused learning, giving students the opportunity to learn according to their strengths and interests.
Below is a simple infographic explaining the design:
Our Academy will be based in the library. Our two Advisors are Mr Tony Wilson, Miss Amber Gilbert and Mr Narin Eckley.