Djarragun College provides boarding facilities for students in Year 7 to Year 12. Boarders enrich the lives of all students by sharing their experiences and ways of life. We recognise the cultures of all boarders and encourage students to share their culture with one another; this is an integral part of the Djarragun campus approach.
Rules and guidelines ensure the rights and privileges of all to be safeguarded and these help to keep our community vibrant and healthy. Through careful consideration of the principles in the Boarding Handbook, available to download below, you will understand what is expected of boarders at Djarragun College, and learn how students contribute to this harmonious school community.
Djarragun College prides itself in providing its students with a ‘home away from home’. Our dorms are all shared with a maximum of 6 students to a room. Whilst at College, our boarders are cared for by our very supportive team of boarding parents and we build a culture of family.
Boarding students are entitled to 3 sets of uniforms each year, free of charge. There are stationery packs available to purchase at College and we do encourage our students to purchase their own for use outside of school hours and for homework. The basics are supplied in class, however all students must return stationery at the end of each lesson.
Our school canteen supplies each boarder with 3 meals per day; meals are prepared by a qualified chef and are varied and nutritious. In addition, students receive a small morning and afternoon tea. Generally a supper of hot chocolate and a small bite to eat, which is brought to the dorm area, concludes the menu for the day.
The school has a dedicated team in Student Services and their responsibilities include monitoring attendance, monitoring behaviour and addressing the wellbeing issues of students.
Home phone calls are made on a regular basis to maintain contact with families and ensure that students are engaged in school life. The school has an enrolment and attendance policy that define the school’s expectations. The school has an illicit drugs policy and a responsible behaviour plan for students, which is under regular review by the school leadership team and Student Services.
There are consequences for students who break the school rules. We will not tolerate acts of violence or bullying. Students come to school to learn. Behaviour support represents an important opportunity for learning how to get along with others. Our preferred way of re-directing low-level problem behaviour is to highlight the consequences of continuing along this path and encourage the student to reflect on how their behaviour could be modified so as to align with the expectations of our school community. The Student Services team monitors attendance through telephone calls, home visits and correspondence with home. Regular attendance enhances student progress and behaviour. Attendance Monitoring Cards encourage students to be active participants in managing their attendance through a positive consequence approach.
A Values Education program runs for 20 minutes at the start of the school day to develop resilient students, to set students up well for the day ahead and to alert staff to any wellbeing concerns.
The school has a full time member of the Student Services team who is also employed as School Chaplain and Pastor in boarding. Chapel is held once a week in Boarding and students attend a church service on the weekend. Visitors from local churches and youth groups are invited to these sessions. Our students frequently sing hymns and perform individually or in groups.
The school has a clinical psychologist to support the emotional and wellbeing concerns of our students and the school utilises the support of outside agencies for example Wuchopperen, Mind Matters and Birdwings and other visiting health professionals.
We also have a careers guidance officer to support and guide our senior students, ensuring that they are on track with their careers when they graduate from the College. Our Year 11 and 12 students regularly get the opportunity to visit universities in the area to get a feel for ‘uni life’ and get a taster of what university has to offer.
There are many aspects to the role of the Student Services team. The school has engagement officers who work with individual students to increase attendance and engagement. All members of the team, including our Attendance Officer, collaborate with families, building relationships with the school and teachers in order to develop plans for support for the students and families.
The Student Services team works with families in engaging and increasing relationships and consults with Community and relevant stakeholders over support and care plans. Specialised individual support and guidance is offered to our students; the team works with students in establishing plans of support and education and career planning.
A key aspect of the team’s role at school is behaviour management and implementation of the behaviour management plan. The team support students with personal problems or issues and has the tools and resources to monitor and manage a student’s behaviour. The team also uses their attendance monitoring cards to assist students with ‘on task’ routines.
Another key role for the team is monitoring absentees and collectively working with QLD Police and community supports to reduce truancy and anti-social behaviour.
Our boarding students participate in weekend excursions. Some of the more memorable excursions have included a Townsville trip to watch the Cowboys, Mungalli Falls for a day of challenges, and a trip to watch the Taipans play basketball. Our students performed cultural dancing there and at half time our students were selected to play on court as part of the entertainment.
Every school day from 3.10pm until 5pm we run our Club and Culture program. The purpose of our Club and Culture Program is to offer students a well-rounded program in areas of sport, fitness, life skills and recreation. For the first 15 minutes, students have a break from their school day and enjoy a piece of fruit and have a drink.
The college also offers a range of co-curricular activities that are based on indigenous culture (dance, music and art) as well as other co-curricular activities that include bush walking, swimming, AFL, beach volleyball, art, board games, creative dancing, indigenous dancing, hip-hop, Zumba and a homework program.
One of our Teacher Aides is always available in the library during Club and Culture to do tutorials, homework or catch-ups, which is especially important for our Year 12 students about to graduate.
The College prides itself on its cultural program. The program honours and values the cultural backgrounds of its indigenous students. There is a cultural dance program timetabled each week; the school’s students participate in the Laura Festival, at local community events including the Pyramid Race; and the Journey to Recognition March and have participated at the i20 Summit in Cairns.