Meet our Principal
For a recent issue of our weekly Bulletin, Mr Mottrom answered a series of questions with School Council President, Nicole Whitty.
School role: Principal
Football Team: Collingwood
Hobbies: Golf, Basketball, reading, movies
Tell us about your time at BSPS?
I started my journey at BSPS in 2016 and was inspired to find a Victorian Government Primary School that offered a Bilingual German program and celebrated diversity and multiculturalism every day.
What do you enjoy the most about BSPS?
At BSPS we have a great community group and I enjoy finding out all about the students and families themselves. I enjoy the continuous focus on the development of relationships which leads to greater understanding of each other and the fact that more and more people are ‘choosing’ to come to BSPS as their preferred primary school.
How good is your German?
Not as good as I would like. I can count, say basic phrases and greetings and I try to add more and more to the repertoire each year. It continues to amaze me and reaffirm my belief in our program that our preps can surpass my German language understanding within their first six months of schooling.
What attracted you to becoming a Principal?
As a teacher, I was driven to make a difference in the lives of my 25 or so students. As a principal, what attracted me to this role was that my actions could drive the whole culture of the school, hopefully still get to know and impact the lives of our students while also impacting the school community as a whole. Although I am out of the classroom (which is one of the downsides) the interests of students are always foremost in my thinking and planning for change. Getting this process right was a major attraction for becoming a principal.
How did last years’ lockdown effect your plans for your first year as Principal?
Great question, It was an interesting year. Plans for school improvement and change went out the window and my thoughts and actions went into focuses on wellbeing and alternate forms of learning. As a staff we looked at information on how to best engage students online, understanding the different needs, abilities, perceptions and device knowledge of both students and their families who we knew we would be working very closely with and needed to communicate clearly with. It was very much a year of focusing on the needs of the staff, students and community, working hard behind the scenes to meet those needs, reflect and take feedback on how to improve/what was working, and then reloading and going again to make sure we got it right.
What’s next for BSPS?
Constant improvement is always the target at BSPS. As in footy terms, if you’re not improving and moving forward, you’re going backwards. There are many things we do extremely well, some things are being reviewed and earmarked for potential change. Buildings and grounds are a focus with major projects in the works, while the means of school to home communication and emphasis and celebration of the German Program as a whole will be coming to the fore this semester and next year.
Tell us a little bit about your family?
Easy, always happy to talk about my family. My lovely wife Shantelle works in retail and at the moment is really into her fitness. Tiarna is the eldest of four children (age 18) just finishing year 12 and learning the value of hard work, saving money as cars are expensive! Blake is 16, in year 11, loves his basketball and gaming (and is currently very distracted by his first girlfriend), Tahlia is 14, in year 9, loves drawing painting and sports and is probably the most mature out of all the kids, and lastly Brock 13, in year 7, the budding golfer and many would say because of this, arguably the favourite (and one of the best golfers in the state for his age). Want to know more?
If you could go back to primary school, what would you do differently?
That was a long time ago, I have nice memories of primary school. I started at Mt. Eliza North P.S. and moved to Derinya P.S. in year 3. I formed some great friendships which lasted throughout high school and some even to this day. It strikes me that I remember fondly the teachers whom I had a good relationship with, who seemed to care about me and spent the time to get to know me. In terms of doing something differently for some reason I did a flying leap off a wooden fort in the playground at school which resulted in a broken leg, I would definitely rethink that one!