Our School name, ‘Korowal’, is an Aboriginal word meaning ‘to stand alone’, or ‘the strong one’. Korowal School is just that. Founded in 1978 in Leura, Korowal School was based around a human-centred philosophy. Within this, we consider that all human beings are of equal worth and capable of reason. We believe that each of us possesses a capacity to solve problems for ourselves in order to flourish. We continue to hold these as core principles today.
Creativity can be seen across all subjects. It is ‘how’ we approach learning that encourages lateral, creative, expansive thinking. We value process over product.
Play is seen as a childs right. To be creative while surrounded by beauty, to develop in their own time. Education is not seen as a race.
Relationships are at the heart of the educational process. Relationship to self, to others, to learning and to the environment. Students are on first name terms with staff in honour of our equality as human beings.
Critical Thinking is embedded throughout our processes. We encourage questioning. We analyse, apply logic and reasoning by asking how and why to further understanding.
Self Expression is held as important for each individual within the community. There is no school uniform.
As the passing decades have seen major changes and developments within Australian society, we have adapted to become relevant to our times, we are honoured to be preparing our students for the evolving world. Korowal of yesterday was seen as a democratic ‘hippy’ school. These days we are slightly more conservative, while retaining democratic principles and sound reasoning. As the custodians for future generations of educators and families, we strive to create a better world for those who come after us.
We continue to acknowledge that quality relationships nourish our social, emotional and academic development. As humans, we exist within community, and establishing sound relationships with each other increases our sense of belonging. When we belong, then we can thrive, and this is what we all want, for our children and ourselves.
To know oneself requires feedback from others. At Korowal we place great value on the quality of communication and feedback that we exchange. Students’ and parents’ input are important to us as we explore ways of further ensuring that the curriculum and learning are relevant and engaging. Students have a voice in morning meetings and weekly class sessions. In a small school, students have direct lines of communication with their teachers and the school Executive. Students run assemblies, participate in the Blue Mountains Youth Council, and are encouraged to initiate ideas.
Korowal is not an authoritarian school. In our distributed leadership model, our staff work interdependently and collaboratively, with staff ‘cluster’ meetings held weekly in Primary and High School. Here we share praxis, current research, student wellbeing & class culture and engage in strategic thinking and planning. Focus groups emerge from many discussions. Teachers are encouraged and supported to be involved in leadership practice.
Korowal is governed by the School Board, made up of committed parents and teachers in service as directors. The management of the school is in the hands of a devoted executive team consisting of the school Principal and two Deputy Principals who also sit in the roles of Primary and High School Coordinator. Korowal strives for consultation and collaboration in decision making and planning processes.