Jess Norris teaches Year 2 at Atherton State Primary School, and has proven herself to be a high achieving beginning teacher and an invaluable asset to the school. Jess’s knowledge of the curriculum and pedagogical content knowledge is comprehensive and recognised by her more experienced peers, as she is able to make noteworthy and valuable contributions during collaborative planning sessions. Jess is recognised as bringing an innovative and different approach to planning. In her own practice, Jess is adept in using the Achievement Standards to map the knowledge and skills of students in order to ensure her differentiation and interventions are targeted to the specific needs of students. Because Jess makes such a significant effort to get to know her students and cater for their individual learning needs, a number of students who had received additional learning support no longer require it. Jess is able to support these students in the mainstream classroom through setting individual learning goals and carefully tailoring learning programs and activities. Recently, Jess has worked with the Head of Curriculum to develop a Tiered Support Plan for one of her students. This Plan outlines how she will ensure the student is accessing the curriculum and is supported at all levels—whole class differentiation, targeted support (e.g. individual goal in reading and writing groups) and intensive support (scheduled one-on-one with the teacher). This will not only assist Jess in supporting this student, but other teachers will also be much better equipped to provide appropriate instruction. Jess’s impressive classroom practice is not the only benefit she brings to Atherton State Primary. She co-facilitates a structured Social Club, and in this role has helped to facilitate Under 8s Day, the Christmas Party, staff raffle, craft afternoon, Biggest Morning Tea Trivia event, BBQs, and more. As the Junior Coordinator at Tablelands Netball association, Jess also encourages students to become active in team sports and marches with the students in the Atherton Maize festival. Congratulations Jess on your nomination.
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