Ipswich educator recognised as one of Australia’s best
HER important role in moulding young minds in Ipswich is not one Nicolee Eiby takes lightly.
Ensuring students arrive at school with a smile, and leave with one too, is what drives the head of Ipswich Junior Grammar School.
Mrs Eiby believes as an educator, there are boundless opportunities to positively influence the future of young people.
Since taking up her position in 2017, Mrs Eiby has overseen "significant" enrolment growth.
The school's early education centre has expanded from 60 Kindergarten and Pre-Prep full-time equivalent enrolments to 141.
Prep to Year 6 numbers have grown from 320 to 371.
The junior school is planning for a fourth Prep class next year with an expected enrolment exceeding 390 students.
She has been nominated for non-government primary school principal of the year at the 2020 Australian Education Awards.
"I am passionate about children's education and every decision that is made here at Junior Grammar is for the benefit of our boys and girls and their families," she said.
"I am proud of our school's academic reputation and achievements which we have been able to maintain during a period of significant enrolment growth.
"Our teachers, innovative learning and co-curricular programs, sporting endeavours, and opportunities in E-STEAM are responsive to the changing demands of our growing student enrolment and demonstrate how we keep each child at the heart of our thinking and decision making."
Mrs Eiby said she was proud to have created an "environment of belonging."
"It is my goal that Junior Grammar students are happy to come to school, happy while they are at school and happy when they leave school each day, and … they are," she said.
"Our students are highly engaged and want to come and learn each and every day."
Ipswich Girls' and Junior Grammar School was nominated for two awards in total, with the other being for the best strategic school plan.
Principal Dr Peter Britton said the school's strategic plans are based on the Balanced Scorecard methodology developed by Professors Kaplan and Norton at Harvard University.
Enrolments have grown to its highest number in more than a decade.
"The 2021 enrolment (is) looking even more promising," he said.
"The scorecard's cause-effect relationships provide an excellent opportunity for staff to test their professional decision making: if we do this, then we expect that result.
"(This) recognition is a tribute to the board of trustees and staff for developing and successfully executing the school's strategic plans over the last decade."
Winners will be announced on October 29.