The New Victorian Kindergarten Student Report – The Victorian Framework 0 to 8 Years : Transition – A Positive Start to School Program

This is a summary of my notes from a recent Professional Development. If there is anything not quite accurate, I’ll apologise now. My day was very interesting, the presenters were of high calibre, and I was introduced to new acronyms, language and information about government projects.

Victorian Framework – Birth to 8

The government has been developing the Victorian Framework Birth – 8. As part of this groups have been developing the Transition – A Positive Start to School Program – underlying beliefs

  • A positive start is linked to positive school trajectories
  • Children’s images of themselves
  • Academic & social difficulties in early school years tend to continue throughout

A positive start to school is about:

  • Enhancing families to work in partnership with early childhood settings
  • Enhancing the development & delivery of transition programs
  • Collaboration – kindergarten & school
  • Developing a consistent approach to the transfer of information
  • Deepen educators understanding of effective transition practices & the use of transition plans

Discussion also included: Birth to 8 Framework for Victoria

  • Aligns the vision of the Blueprint with the EYLF
  • Describes common goals Birth to 8
  • Provides support and guidance for all professionals in all settings working children in this age group.
  • Establishing and giving common language & shared expectations of children’s learning and development
  • Recognises the central role that families and communities play
  • Outlines how to support transitions & build continuity of learning
  • Considers assessment from a health, learning and development process

Transition – Kindergarten teachers in all state settings will be completing a formal report. They will be reporting against 5 learning outcomes of the National Framework

  1. Children have a strong sense of identity
  2. Children are connected with and contribute to their world
  3. Children have a strong sense of wellbeing
  4. Children are confident and involved learners
  5. Children are effective communicators

 Each of these statements is being unpacked by all groups in the community- Primary teachers, Kindergarten & parent groups to ensure common language.

It became quite obvious that the language used and the interpretation of educational ‘speak’ is very different across all groups. The principles of assessment were also discussed and recorded to ensure commonality between all groups. Why do we assess? – List is as follows- This list represents both Kindergarten and Primary perspectives

Assessment

  • Strength based – Kindergarten teachers see the meaning of this word as different to primary
  • Specific to child
  • Based on observation
  • Occur in a natural context
  • Considers confidentiality and privacy
  • Purpose
  • Meaningful to reader
  • Respectful of diversity
  • Highlights previous learning
  • Builds an understanding of how children learn and develop
  • Holistic picture of the child
  • Based on multiple perspectives
  • Professionally written

Writing comprehensive transition reports is very new to Kindergarten teachers and it was obvious that they are apprehensive. The report is very substantial- I have a draft copy and think it will certainly help the transition from Kindergarten to school and ensure that relevant information is transferred.  I found the Kindergarten teachers extremely knowledgeable.

It is interesting to note that the privacy laws are different for this sector. No information, verbal or written can be passed on without parent permission. For verbal discussion to happen parents will be asked to sign that they are happy for verbal discussion to take place between the school and the kindergarten. This does have implications to primary schools, although I’m sure most parents will ‘OK’ this process.  

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Cheers Nina

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