The first five years of any beginning teacher’s career are full of challenges and opportunities and the community at St George State High School are thankful that fourth year teacher Caitlin Crowe embraced both.
The Head of Department for Agriculture and 2023 Excellence in Teaching TEACHX recipient has contributed to the establishment of multiple show teams, the introduction of artificial insemination programs and iFarm technology- a fully computerised and interactive farm science research station. Caitlin’s innovative teaching methods have helped maintain student engagement, with students encouraged to remain in school because of the Agricultural program and its numerous camp opportunities, various trips to show and judging in Toowoomba, Brisbane, and Dirranbandi to name a few.
Community partnerships are essential to St George, and Caitlin has exemplified this for her students through her collaboration with prominent stakeholders from both education and industry, including world-record holding sheep shearer turn police office Laurie Bateman, and Cotton Australia.
“I am privileged to be involved in the continuation, expansion and creation
of Agriculture education programs. Part of this includes coordinating the
Bluelight Shearing Program which runs three shearing camps a year for
students in the Southwest Region. The program has recently expanded to the
Central West region providing opportunities for students,” she said.
Within St George SHS, Caitlin’s commitment to the profession has extended to her engagement with colleagues, working collaboratively to develop cross-curricular lessons, her efforts in which will see a range of newly built agricultural facilities including a new purpose-built agricultural classroom completed in 2023.
“Earlier this year I gave a presentation about the implementation of Agriculture and cotton education across curriculum areas to other teachers from the Balonne cluster and local industry representatives,” she said.
“The best part of being a teacher is relationships and trust that you build with your students. I enjoy seeing the growth in my students and feel lucky that I am able to be a part of such an important time in the student’s life.”