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Navigating School Transition – Family Information Morning

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The purpose of the family information morning event was to showcase educational options, resources and support services on offer for families of young deaf children around Victoria. 
Megan said: “I attended this event as my daughter Imogen who is deaf has just transitioned into prep.  I found the morning valuable and informative. It was great to find out more about different educational settings from Early Education Programs to Catholic, Independent and Government schools, to chat with them about  bilingual programs, deaf facility/or Integration Units. I also spent time chatting with Visiting Teachers about their role and with Australian Hearing about FM’s and Sound Systems. Thanks for supporting families in their child’s transition.”
More than 100 people attended the VDEI Learning Centre, with some 30 families and representation from 22 schools and organisations, including schools from the Government, Catholic and Independent sectors. 
Families expressed the benefits not only of having all available options under the one roof, but also being a part of the knowledge sharing and networking.  Participants said they were keen for this to become an annual event and would like the project to be inclusive of the transition from Years 5 to 7. 
“Thanks to VDEI for organising the Transition to Primary School event and for inviting Australian Hearing to be part of it,” said Karin Gillies from Australian Hearing.  “We had lots of conversations with parents and it was a great opportunity for us to provide information and support for the families outside of the clinical setting.  We would love to be involved if you organise a similar event for students transitioning to secondary school. This could be a great opportunity to combine our Technology Expo with your event as it’s aimed at the same age-group. Combining education and technology would work well and who knows – we could be starting something great!”
“Congratulations to VDEI,” said Maureen Douglas, principal at the Victorian College for the Deaf.  “I want you to know how effective we thought the information morning was on Saturday.  It was an impressive turnout and highlighted how eager families are to learn.”
The Transition into Primary School Project is funded by the More Support for Students with Disabilities National Partnership. In Victoria VDEI, Taralye and Aurora have developed a working partnership to assist families of young children to transition into primary school. The project has involved:
Ø  Developing a shared database with the Victorian Infant Hearing Screening Program
Ø  Providing professional development workshops to schools in relation to the needs of newly enrolled students
Ø  Providing information, resources  and support opportunities to families seeking assistance with transition into school to families.
For more information, please email Jean Moores-Chadwick at moores-chadwick.jean.a@edumail.vic.gov.au or Jennifer Galloway at galloway.jennifer.c@edumail.vic.gov.au