Skip to Main Content

CEO | Principal's Report

As education evolves, driven in part by new technologies and changing expectations for post-school study and work, Haileybury continues to focus on developing students’ core skills in literacy and numeracy to the highest levels possible.

Our School does this while embracing innovation that will enhance critical and creative thinking so students are prepared for life after school. This approach has seen Haileybury rank among the very highest top-performing schools in the country on national testing and by Australian Tertiary Admissions Results.

It has also seen the School introduce compulsory studies, such as Start-Up in Year 8 and the Haileybury Incubator Project in Year 9, where students develop the skills and dispositions to solve complex problems including design thinking, project management and developing an entrepreneurial mindset.

In the discussion about changes to education, in recent months there has been a focus on artificial intelligence (AI) — in particular ChatGPT, the latest AI language model. 

Haileybury’s brilliant teachers are looking forward to leveraging the best elements of AI in our education delivery. The students of today will be working in a future where AI is the reality, and it is important that our students are exposed to it and engage with the most effective ways of using AI.

However, it is important to note that ChatGPT’s current Terms of Use restrict it to ages 18+. As such, to meet our compliance requirements with school regulators, ChatGPT will not be able to be accessed by students on school Wi-Fi. However, it is acknowledged that some students will be accessing it on their own devices or from home. We certainly anticipate that the 18+ restriction will be removed at some point, at which time it will be available to students on the School network.

Teachers have engaged in forums and discussions to understand the tools available for student use and to explore new technologies so they can have open and informed conversations in the classroom. Staff will have full access to ChatGPT and may use it on the projector in the classroom to support class discussions and they are encouraged to discuss ChatGPT’s use with students.  

There are many areas in which AI can assist teachers to provide differentiated programs for students. It is a useful tool in potentially boosting vocabulary, providing writing prompts, in second language acquisition, assisting with problem-solving tasks, helping to explain concepts and in many other areas to be explored further.

AI will also have an impact on assessment in education. Ironically, this may be in making supervised off-line assessments, such as the VCE testing regime currently in place, more significant.

It is important to note that ChatGPT can produce inaccurate responses or ‘hallucinations’ as well as biases, and information within ChatGPT is only relevant up until the end of 2021. This should be kept in mind when using the tool or when parents are discussing it with their children.

Haileybury continues to embrace the evolution of technology; the launch of Haileybury Pangea is an example of how the School has a strong desire to evolve and stay ahead of the curve. It is, however, essential that we ensure every student matters every day and, at times, that means moving considerately to ensure their safety and security.

Haileybury will embrace the use of AI where it is appropriate and where it enhances the capacity for students to be prepared for the future of study and work. 

Derek Scott

CEO | Principal