VATS constitutes a point of contact for advice regarding the commencement and/or implementation of a Spanish language program in government schools all around Victoria. We embrace a great and productive relationship with community counterparts and organisations representing the Spanish speaking world such as consulates of varied Spanish speaking nations as well as local and international education related institutions and individuals. From its beginning VATS has been delivering professional development to support school language teachers to implement and deliver a Spanish language programs. Every year, VATS strives for identifying the professional learning needs of our members translated into conferences, seminars, workshops, networks and school-based support. 

The Victorian Association for Teachers of Spanish was founded in Melbourne at the beginning of the 80's after discussions with teachers who saw the need for such an organization. By 1985 it had a small number of active members. Now with a powerful promotion of quality programs and the provision of current research-based initiatives, Spanish has flourished in Victoria. Our strategic plan involves: leadership capacity, increase collegiality and networking, teaching support for effective program delivery and student outcomes, replicate success from one school to another, advise to Spanish language teachers and school leaders on resources, current language teaching methodology and instruction that works and share of expertise. To achieve these, we plan a variety of professional learning opportunities for teachers and student learning activities to promote the outstanding teaching and learning of Spanish in Victoria.

Aims
VATS would like to promote:
Quality teaching of the Spanish Language in Victoria.
The cultures and traditions of the Spanish-speaking countries.
Bilingualism (Spanish/English) in our community.
Intercultural understanding for all Australians

VATS is proudly supported by The Education State and Department of Education and Training logo


Contact us

We regularly organize activities that will help you  become more familiar with the language and cultures of the Spanish speaking world  and find out about what’s going on in the Spanish speaking community in Victoria that could project cultural and language knowledge for our students and teachers.

General Enquiries and event registration

Ms Rachel Gonzales (Communication Officer - Committee S) can be contacted via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Emails are periodically checked from 8am to 4:30pm Monday - Thursday.

Responses are more likely to be given after 4:30pm Monday - Friday.

Notice that C.O.B. for event registration and attendance confirmation is Friday 4:30pm

 

Organisational Enquiries

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Contact person: Mr Carlos Franco

Contact Phone - Mobile: 0481 558 224

 


 

Prof. Martínez Expósito from Melbourne University summarizes in his book ten important facts on Spanish and Latin American studies (Martínez-Expósito & López 2008):

1. A second language is a definite advantage

2. Spanish is the first Western language by number of native speakers

3. Spanish is a major international language

4. Australia’s trade with Spanish-speaking countries is ever expanding

5. Spanish is one of the three most demanded foreign languages worldwide

6. The Hispanic – A major world culture

7. Spanish is the language for travel and hospitality

8. Spanish enjoys proper academic standards

9. Learnability: Spanish is easy to learn

10. Spanish is an Australian community language

 

Promotion of existent programs as foundation for new schools keen to implement a Spanish language program

To continue with the delivery and consequent promotion of quality language programs, teachers are encouraged to take firm and consistent participation in our network and PD sessions. Collegiality and professional discussion among teachers from different areas all across Melbourne is very much welcome during our gatherings and through our online feeder.

We also encourage language teachers to maintain their enthusiasm and close communication with school families and the further community. Responding to the Victorian Vision for Languages 2025, our guiding pace "Spanish,  an easy language to learn for English speakers with a great cultural wealth to offer Victorian school students" was launched. With a promisingly increasing number of schools offering Spanish, VATS continues to work on equipping our members with the necessary knowledge and skills for a successful implementation of the Australian and Victorian Curriculum. Following our guiding pace and in order to strengthen collegiality, VATS launched the strategy “Spanish: symbol of high quality programs for Victorian school students”. Similarly, to increase intercultural awareness we embraced the motto "21 language-and-cultural pillars, one direction towards Spanish language learning" in our immersion days and community represented initiatives. Among associates, these resulted in an enriching exchange of expertise, collaboration, active contribution and ongoing commitment to supporting and promoting the learning and teaching of Spanish in Victoria.

Teaching Networks and Sample curriculum programs

As you are aware Victorian government schools cater for students from diverse language, cultural and socio-economic backgrounds. This is why as language teachers we are committed to, and fully supported with, ongoing professional development to contributing to our individual school's goals and our association's vision to provide Victorian government schools with a Spanish language program of high quality.

Innovation and technology are becoming a key focus with a strong emphasis on student engagement and 21st Century pedagogies. And, we are also aware that quality programs should operate at school level to support literacy and numeracy initiatives. What is more, research shows that when professionals get together and share their experiences and resources it results in an effective delivery of individual programs. Moreover, David Marsh states 'the most successful programs are those which integrate the best of the available approaches, methods and resources". All these statements validate our hard work all around the year to provide our colleagues with opportunities to further develop their teaching knowledge and skills.

The co-operative elaboration of sample curriculum programs, unit designs and exchange of expertise have been proved to be of high assistance for all our Spanish Language teachers in 2015. In 2016, we will continue to encourage our network meetings and implement more "totally practical journal" sessions (TPJ) where colleagues can see, apply, reflect and further discuss different curriculum components.


 Professional development priorities and events

In accordance with DET's guidelines our priority areas for professional development include:

- The Victorian Curriculum for languages

- The Implementation of quality programs in primary and secondary schools

- Teaching professional journals (TPJs)

- Exchange of expertise between teachers located around metropolitan and regional

- Innovative and exemplary teaching practices

- Language-in-use opportunities for our students

- Language advocacy and promotion

- Student retention at secondary school level


Expression of areas of interest for our Teaching professional journals

A number of suggestions and requests regarding topics and needs(to be covered during our Teaching professional journals (TPJ) and Exchange of expertise sessions (EXES) have been collected during our events and our AGMs. It is likely that you may have identified some new matters and topics specific to you school that you would like to be taken on board during our TPJs. Your contribution related to ideas on topics, teaching-learning needs, keynote speakers, dates, times, etc. will be highly appreciated. More ideas, suggestions and expressions of areas of interest, in dot points, can be submitted to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


Membership 

To take on board our priorities, your already satisfactory commitment on ongoing professional development is imperative. The 2018 online membership form is available here. Annual membership recommences on February 1 each year.

Membership forms with a list of events are emailed out soon after expressions of interests for our professional development journals have been considered. 

Members are granted free attendance and/or discounted rates for our professional development sessions as well as access to online professional learning platform, website-feeder (log in details), teaching networks, resources, e-books, materials from our VATS library and participation in our language-in-use opportunities.


General Inquiries and event registration

Ms Rachel Gonzales (Communication Officer - Committee S) can be contacted via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Emails are periodically checked from 8am to 4:30pm Monday - Thursday.

Responses are more likely to be given after 4:30pm Monday - Thursday.

Notice that C.O.B. for inquiries and event attendance confirmation emails is Friday 4:30pm

 

Organisational Inquiries

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Contact person: Mr Carlos Franco

Contact Phone - Mobile: 0481 558 224