The 3rd Transition to School Network meeting was held at Wahroonga Public School library on August 22nd, 2017.
Attendance was 38 participants from preschools and schools. It was wonderful to see a greater representation from more local public and independent schools. Thank you to those pre schools and schools who sent their apologies – I hope this gives you information from the session.
Together we discussed the structures each of our organisations provide for supporting students with additional needs who require supplementary to extensive levels of support.
- DoE Inclusion policy for Students with disabilities
- Learning difficulties
- Mild intellectual disabilities
- Language disorders
- Behaviour needs
- Autism spectrum disorders or mental health disorders (with lower level support needs).
- Students with health care needs and EAL/D students
- How funding is provided and distributed in the DoE
- How schools make accomodations through differentiated learning programs and adjustments, Individual Learning Plans and Personalised Learning
- What support is provided by DoE to schools
- Additional staffing is available in schools
- Learning and Support Team structures and Learning and Support Teacher (LaST)
- School counsellor and School learning support officer roles in schools
- What and when schools require information to ensure time for access request to be submitted for funding allocations or a request for placements in alternate settings (SSP Schools)
- Applications for assisted travel for parents to SSP’s
- Playground adjustments to cater for some students – examples from Abbotsleigh Junior School, Lindfield East and Wahroonga Public Schools were shared.
More information can be found on – https://education.nsw.gov.au/disability-learning-and-support
A large amount of conversation was then devoted to sharing what schools do to support individual transition prior to beginning school the following year. Some children require additional or alternate transition opportunities to the organised orientation days. These will need to look very different for each child. Some children may need several short visits, with a parent/s, later slowly introducing periods without them if possible. It may also require sessions outdoors, familiarising the child with the larger school site and the boundaries as schools are often unfenced and gated.
A chid coming to school with a physical disability will require an initial meeting earlier, as the processes for making environmental adjustments can take many months. The recommendation by the DoE is for parents to begin discussions with their local school two years in advance.
Communication and information about students from prior to school settings, parents, other support services ( occupational therapists, psychologists etc) with schools was discussed. Preschool staff expressed they are also very willing to communicate to support schools with information on children in addition to the Transition to School Statements.
A guide for parents of a child with a disability from the DoE – Parent info
Attendance from –
- Christ Church Preschool St Ives
- Balamara Preschool Waitara
- Explore and Develop Waitara
- KU Wahroonga
- Wahroonga Beehive
- Pymble Turramurra Preschool
- Pymble Public School
- Turramurra Public School
- Wahroonga Public School
- Warrawee Public School
- Lindfield East Public School
- Abbotsleigh Junior School
Thank you all for coming and contributing to the conversations.
Topic for discussion in Term 4
Sharing communication information packs and forms between parents, schools and prior to school settings.
Tuesday Week 3 – 24th October
at Wahroonga Beehive Preschool