Bell Primary School is situated in Preston and serves a community that sits approximately 7-10 km from Melbourne CBD. Since the last self-evaluation and review, the surrounding community has seen a continual gentrification which is reflected in its Student Family Occupation (SFO) index of 0.17. English is predominantly spoken at home and the school has only 8.4% of student who speak a language other than English.
Over the course of the previous four-year strategic plan Bell Primary School saw a significant growth of student numbers from 322 in 2012 to 526 in 2018. As a result, the department of education applied a ceiling. This means that new enrolments can only be from families where Bell is their closest school.
Bell has a technology rich learning environment to supports the curiosity and thirst for learning of our 21st Century learners. Bell has a strong Arts program which reflects community involvement in the Darebin arts scene. Bell has a strong Literacy and Numeracy program which is reflected in its excellent NAPLAN results where a clear majority of our students are achieving at level or above in Reading, Writing, and Numeracy. The challenge for Bell is to continue its development of a strong and consistent pedagogical approach where rich learning opportunities are designed so that our students are challenged and engaged. This will ensure their growth in learning is maintained so that when they leave Bell Primary they are curious, empathic, self-directed learners in secondary school and beyond
Research has demonstrated that the greatest impact on student outcomes is the home environment. When school strengthen relationships with families and community organisations, they can tap into the environment that has the greatest impact on students. A challenge for Bell is to build a culture of trust through the whole community to build positive relationships with families and work with them to support their child’s learning.