Not all learning and teaching is done within the confines of a classroom, and it takes a special kind of teacher to put support and guidance into practice via alternative means.
Amanda Rynne is a Primary and General Secondary teacher and Deputy Principal from the Capricornia School of Distance Education (CSDE) who does just that – and she’s been nominated for this year’s QCT Excellent Leadership in Teaching and Learning Award.
Endorsed by colleague Ian Bielenberg, who describes her as an “outstanding educator with an enormous knowledge across all areas”, Amanda’s leadership is built around strong trusting relationships and strong interpersonal skills.
“She is an exceptional teacher and a lead coach who provides exceptional feedback at all levels. An agent for change, Amanda mentors staff and they all appreciate her honest feedback. The whole school community holds her in the highest regard,” says Ian.
“Amanda was instrumental in our school’s becoming an Independent Public School, playing a key role in the enrolment growth from 220 students to the 1600 currently enrolled."
“In addition to this, Amanda has led the key implementation of a most comprehensive induction process for our 115 staff members."
“She is a leader and innovator most deserving of this award."
In her role as deputy principal of CDSE, Amanda has been responsible for initiating, implementing and reviewing innovative learning programs across the school from Prep to Year 12, including special needs and learning support. The new multi-age focus classes that have come online have been part of this.
Through assembling a team tasked with putting together age-appropriate materials addressing significant Literacy and Mathematics deficits, Amanda oversaw the upskilling of staff to run intervention programs and collect data which helped determine class structures. Amanda also oversaw the large communication initiative needed to convince parents, students and staff of the benefits of the new class structures.
With the desire to improve herself and others always at the forefront of her mind, Amanda regularly meets with staff she mentors and takes a leading role in enhancing their professional knowledge. It is here she builds on her capacity to support students at risk.
Using her incredible depth of knowledge around student welfare and educational processes, Amanda has a conviction that with the right amount of support even students with the most complex needs can access a high-quality education. This has been inspirational to her mentees.
Amanda has been instrumental in instigating collaboration among staff for the benefit of her students. Her calm, efficient and supportive manner means she is approachable and always keen to work with staff in assisting them to manage their portfolios with the highest level of competence.
Amanda was the driving force behind the school’s software change in 2017, making sure technical issues behind the scenes were seamless and ensuring a smooth roll out. She set up “how-to” documents, led support meetings and organised mentoring where needed to ensure an easy transition. Through her leadership, staff and home tutors were guided in a highly supportive environment.
Congratulations Amanda on your QCT Excellent Leadership in Teaching and Learning Award nomination.