Welcome to Sorell School
From the Principal: Jenny Cowling
Welcome to Sorell School. We are proudly the oldest continually operating public school in Australia having provided education and care on the same site for children and families of the Sorell community since the school opened in 1821. Our school motto is “Respecting the past, creating the future” and that sentiment, along with a deeply held belief that all our students deserve the best education possible, in order to become respectful, responsible, contributing citizens, defines our vision for our school.
We are mindful of honouring the unique relationship our community and school have shared over our close to 200 year history and we are determined to continue to provide relevant high quality education for learners of all ages as they embrace a future that offers many exciting opportunities and challenges. We recognise that Sorell sits in the middle of the South East Region of Tasmania and at the gateway to the Tasman Peninsula and East Coast. On the basis of that unique geographical location we envisage an emerging role for Sorell School as a centre for education and training for the South East Region.
Initially a primary school only, we have grown to be a birth to adult learning enterprise that currently caters for nearly 900 learners. Our services are delivered across four campuses including:
- a Kindergarten in Midway Point
- a Kindergarten to Year 6 Primary campus on the Sorell site
- a Year 7 to 10 Secondary campus co-located on the Sorell site
- a Trade Training Centre and adjoining classrooms where some of our Year 11-12 and adult education and training programs are delivered.
Our school includes a school farm and a Heritage Village that add outstanding “hands-on, minds-on” contexts for our learning programs.
The Australian Curriculum and the Early Years Learning Framework drive our Kinder to Year 10 educational provisions and our Year 11-12 programs are grounded in Australian Vocational Education and Training (VET) and the Office of Tasmanian Assessment, Standards and Certification (TASC) standards and courses.
Our early years provisions include Launching into Learning (LiL) programs at Sorell and Midway Point and we are a Learning in Families Together (LIFT) school. Both programs are aimed at honouring families as the first and most important teachers of their children and are focussed on building productive and positive learning partnerships between parents and carers, students and teachers.
We have established a Big Picture Education Academy that caters for two classes or advisory groups of Year 9 and 10 students and supports our extension into Years 11 and 12. Big Picture is an approach to learning that builds on the personal passions, interests and skills of students and features project based learning, learning through industry experience and internships and strong partnerships between families, students and advisors (teachers).
Along with our teggana coalition partner schools (Bayview, Campania, Clarence, Rose Bay, Rosny, Tasman and Triabunna) we extended our scope of provision into year 11 and 12 in 2017. teggana is an aboriginal word for “heart” and aptly describes what is at the heart of our coalition’s mission i.e. meeting more students’ needs by collectively providing a broader range and depth of post year 10 learning programs. Currently 100 students, most often through a shared enrolment arrangement with our teggana partners, are enjoying the ready accessibility of Sorell School and specialisation, particularly through our five VET programs.
The Tasmanian State Government has committed significant capital works funding that will see a complete re-development of Sorell School over the next few years. The works will include a combination of new buildings and refurbishment of existing facilities. Most recently the Government announced additional capital investment to fund the building of a Child and Family Learning Centre (CFLC), to be co-located on the Sorell School site. The CFLC will provide health, support and outreach services for families and children in the community and will add further substance to the birth to adult learning, training and care vision we hold for our school. Initial planning for the re-development has begun and extensive community consultation has occurred. Redevelopment of our school is expected to commence in 2021, with the new CFLC to be co-located on the site in the future.
We are at the beginning of an exciting and seminal period in Sorell School’s long and proud history. We look forward to continuing to strengthen and grow our partnerships with families, businesses and organisations already linked to our school and to welcoming new families into our community.