Learning Conferences

posted 21 Jun 2017, 17:27 by James Rea   [ updated 21 Jun 2017, 17:33 ]

Learning Conferences

For over eight years at Russell Street School, we have run Student Led Conferences.  At RSS, a SLC is a conference run by students, for their parents, about their learning.  During the fifteen-minute conference, students present learning in different curriculum areas, as shown primarily in their portfolio and on their blogs (now Seesaw).  Students discuss the process of learning, and the progress they have made, with reference to their goals and the criteria against which their work has been evaluated.

SLC’s differ from traditional parent-teacher interviews in that they put the students at the heart of the reporting process. It is not like the old one-way interviews, where teachers do the majority of talking.  In SLCs teachers, depending on the age, confidence and capability of students, provide prompts and support for the student to explain their learning progress and next learning steps.  

Student Led Conferences have traditionally been held at the end of Term 1, the end of Term 2 and a Home Led Conference (where students and parents complete the process at home) at the end of Term 3.  National Standard data is provided to parents in a written report (issued at the conference at the end of Term 2) and in an end-of year report.

When we introduced SLC’s at Russell Street School, we had a very different landscape from what we do currently.  At the time of introduction of SLC’s at RSS, we were looking for a way to engage our parent community more with the learning that their child was participating in.  We wanted to empower our students to talk more about their learning with their parents. The SLC played an important part in this process.  

What we have seen and experienced over the past few years (with the increase in Student Blogs and Seesaw accounts) is that parents are much more involved in their child’s learning through the use of technology.  Parents are seeing this learning in real-time.  We are excited by this change as it is much more beneficial to our students - they are receiving feedback from multiple adults at the time that the learning is occurring.  

Because technology enables this learning to be shared prior to a SLC we now need to redefine the content of the SLC to continue to maximise the students learning.

With a new initiative, comes a new name - we would like to introduce the concept of a Learning Conference to you.


Please Note

School will finish @ 12:30pm on Monday July 3rd for conferences to start at 1:15pm

We aim to have the booking site live by Monday



Learning Conference

A Learning Conference is made up of 2 parts.


  1. Home Led Conference (this is carried out before you come to the Learning Conference)

We believe that it is very important for children to have one on one time with an adult/adults to share and celebrate the terms learning.  Before coming to the Learning Conference at school, we would like your child to organise a time to sit down with you and engage in a Home Led Conference.  This is where your child will spend 15 minutes presenting their learning to you. You might like to ask questions such as:

  • What are you going to try to get better at next?

  • How do you manage a difficult task?

  • What support do you need to achieve one of your targets or goals?

  • What has been your proudest achievement so far?


2.  Learning Conference (this is a 15 minute conference held at school with the parents/caregivers, student and teacher)


During the 15 minutes with the teacher, you can expect three components.


  • The first 5 minutes will be a time where your child will share one aspect of their learning - this term it is likely to be their Science Fair Project.  


  • In the second 5 minutes, the teacher will share one of the assessments that has been carried out with your child (this may be a Running Record, a Writing Matrix or a Maths Rich Task).  Teachers will share the assessment that is most beneficial for you and your child to know about.


  • The final 5 minutes will be spent sharing your child’s Mid-Year Report.  

As usual, we always appreciate hearing from you, so please, once you have experienced a Learning Conference this term, do contact us with your thoughts about this new format.