School readiness

The latest material added to the Australian Institute of Family Studies library database is displayed, up to a maximum of 30 items. Where available online, a link to the document is provided. Many items can be borrowed from the Institute's library via the Interlibrary loan system.

See more resources on School readiness in the AIFS library catalogue

TIMSS 2019 Australia: Volume 2, School and classroom contexts for learning

Thomson S, Wernert N, Buckley S, Rodrigues S, O'Grady E and Schmid M
Camberwell, Vic. : Australian Council for Educational Research, 2021.
The Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) aims to provide comparative information about educational achievement across countries to improve teaching and learning in mathematics and science, and is held with students in Year 4 and Year 8. This is the second of two reports that looks at how Australian students are faring, in comparison to other nations. Volume 1 presented data on achievement, while this new volume presents qualitative findings on the contexts in which learning and achievement occur. It looks at the school socioeconomic composition, school resourcing and shortages, student school readiness, school climate and focus on academic success, student sense of belonging, discipline, safety and bullying, student absenteeism, student tiredness or hunger, teacher and principal qualifications and experience, teacher job satisfaction, classroom learning environments, and students' attitude to learning and educational aspirations. The findings highlight how many students are attend schools with disadvantaged resourcing or with disadvantaged peers.

Changing children's trajectories: results of the HIPPY Longitudinal Study

Connolly J and Mallett S
Fitzroy, Vic. : Brotherhood of St. Laurence, 2021.
The Home Interaction Program for Parents and Youngsters (HIPPY) is a 2-year early learning and parenting program targeting 4-5 year old children in low-income households, that aims to improve child school readiness and parent-child relationships. This report presents findings from a longitudinal study of the program. It describes the HIPPY program, considers issues in doing research in highly disadvantaged communities, then discusses the findings in light of theory of change and causal pathways. The sample comprised 569 parent-child dyads from 45 sites, who commenced HIPPY in either 2016 or 2017. Surveys were conducted at commencement, after the first year, and after completion. The findings suggest that these children experience a changed learning trajectory - improving from below average to above average literacy and numeracy scores. However, there are still recommendations for improvement.

Educational activities on language and behavioural outcomes at school entry are more important for socioeconomically disadvantaged children : a prospective observational study of Australian children.

Gialamas A, Haag D, Mittinty M and Lynch J
Journal of Epidemiology of Community Health v. 74 no. 10 2020: 770-777
A previous study by these authors investigated whether specific activities in early childhood are associated with good language and behavioural outcomes at the start of school, finding that educational activities at 2-3 years of age had a significant positive impact. This article expands this work by investigating whether this association varies by children 's socioeconomic background. Data is again taken from the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. It finds that children who participated in less than 30 minutes a day in educational activities and who were from a low-income household were at even greater risk of poorer outcomes. The findings have implications for intervention efforts.

Educational activities on language and behavioural outcomes at school entry are more important for socioeconomically disadvantaged children : a prospective observational study of Australian children.

Gialamas A, Haag D, Mittinty M and Lynch J
Journal of Epidemiology of Community Health v. 74 no. 10 2020: 770-777
A previous study by these authors investigated whether specific activities in early childhood are associated with good language and behavioural outcomes at the start of school, finding that educational activities at 2-3 years of age had a significant positive impact. This article expands this work by investigating whether this association varies by children 's socioeconomic background. Data is again taken from the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. It finds that children who participated in less than 30 minutes a day in educational activities and who were from a low-income household were at even greater risk of poorer outcomes. The findings have implications for intervention efforts.

Does an integrated, wrap-around school and community service model in an early learning setting improve academic outcomes for children from low socioeconomic backgrounds?

Newman S, McLoughlin J, Skouteris H, Blewitt C, Melhuish E and Bailey C
Early Child Development and Care 11 Aug 2020: Advance online publication
This article looks at a program in Doveton, Victoria, to improve the school readiness and academic outcomes of children in disadvantaged areas. The wrap-around model, based at Doveton College, combines early intervention and community services for local families experiencing entrenched disadvantage. An evaluation of the model looked at reading, oral-language, writing and numeracy tests from school entry to Year 3, comparing students who attended the program with those who did not. The evaluation found higher test scores among students who attended the program, suggesting the benefits of this approach.

Educational opportunity in Australia 2020: who succeeds and who misses out

Lamb S, Huo S, Walstab A, Wade A, Maire Q, Doecke E, Jackson J and Endekov Z
Melbourne : Mitchell Institute, 2020.
This report examines whether Australia' education system is successfully preparing young people for the future. It collates information on the strengths and weaknesses of the education system for helping preschool children, older children, adolescents and young adults to be successful lifelong learners, confident and creative individuals, and active and informed citizens - measures of the sorts of attributes that the education system is intended to help shape so that community members can contribute successfully and meaningfully to social, economic and cultural life. The findings indicate that systems are working well for a number of young people. However, about one-fifth to one-third of young people are behind or missing out - in particular young people from poorer families, those living in rural and remote parts of Australia, and Indigenous Australians. Students' postcode and their family's resources are consistently linked to success on key indicators. Many children are starting school behind and the gap grows wider as they get older. Data sources include the Australian Early Development Census (AEDC), NAPLAN, the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC), Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), and the Longitudinal Surveys of Australian Youth (LSAY).

An Abecedarian approach with Aboriginal families and their young children in Australia : playgroup participation and developmental outcomes.

Page J, Cock M, Murray L, Eadie T, Niklas F, Scull J and Sparling J
International Journal of Early Childhood v. 51 no. 2 2019: 233-250
This article investigates whether the Abecedarian Approach Australia (3a) intervention can improve the early language and learning skills of young Indigenous children prior to preschool. It assesses the outcomes of children attending the Families as First Teachers playgroups in school settings in two remote communities in the Northern Territory, with reference also to specific program components. The study found that children in the intervention group had stronger language and overall development outcomes.

Income-related gaps in early child cognitive development : why are they larger in the United States than in the United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada?

Bradbury B, Waldfogel J and Washbrook E
Demography v. 56 no. 1 Feb 2019: 367-390
Previous studies have found that socioeconomic status has a bigger impact on children's life chances in the United States than in many other countries. This article investigates one aspect further: the impact of income inequality on children's school readiness. It compares data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study with data from 3 overseas studies: the Millennium Cohort Study from the United Kingdom, the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children, and the National Longitudinal Study of Children and Youth from Canada. The analysis finds that lower-income families face a similar level of disadvantage, it is the higher-income parents in the United States that are able to confer a greater advantage in terms of children's school readiness than similarly affluent parents overseas.

Changing the life trajectories of Australia's most vulnerable children. Report no. 4, 24 months in the Early Years Education Program - assessment of the impact on children and their primary caregivers

Tseng Y, Jordan B, Borland J, Coombs N, Cotter K, Guillou M, Hill A, Kennedy A and Jane Sheehan
Parkville, Vic. : University of Melbourne, 2019.
The Early Years Education Program is an early years care and education program in Victoria targeting children who are exposed to significant family stress, abuse, or social disadvantage. The program aims to address the consequences of family stress on children's development and ensure that at-risk and vulnerable children arrive at school developmentally equal to their peers and equipped to be successful learners. This is the fourth report from an evaluation of the program, and looks at the impacts on children and their carers after the first 2 years of enrolment. A total of 145 infants and toddlers were recruited to the EYEP trial, from 99 families engaged with family services or child protection services. Outcomes include IQ, language skills, protective factors related to resilience, social-emotional development, carer psychological distress, and the home environment. This fourth report found that the program had a significant positive impact on IQ, protective factors related to resilience, and social-emotional development. However, these varied by gender: for example, resilience was significantly improved for boys but not at all for girls.

Changing the life trajectories of Australia's most vulnerable children. Report no. 3, The Early Years Education Program (EYEP) model

Jordan B and Kennedy A
Parkville, Vic. : University of Melbourne, 2019.
The Early Years Education Program is an early years care and education program developed by the Children's Protection Society. The program targets children who are exposed to significant family stress, abuse, or social disadvantage, and aims to address the consequences of family stress on children's development and ensure that at-risk and vulnerable children arrive at school developmentally equal to their peers and equipped to be successful learners. This report describes the conceptual frameworks underpinning the model and its key components. It discusses the background of the program, early years education pedagogy, attachment theory, parent engagement and participation, wrap around services, and structures and processes to support and scaffold the work of EYEP educators. The Victorian Department of Human Services 2007 list of risk factors to healthy child development are included as an appendix.

Adverse childhood experiences and school readiness outcomes: results from the Growing Up in New Zealand study

University of Auckland. Centre for Social Data Analytics, New Zealand. Ministry of Social Development
Wellington N.Z. : Ministry of Social Development, 2019.
This report explores the association between adverse experiences in early childhood and later school readiness, using data from the 'Growing Up in New Zealand' longitudinal study. Adverse experiences include exposure to maltreatment and experiencing parental divorce, family abuse, mental illness, substance abuse, or incarceration, while school readiness was measured with a range of cognitive development tests. The study found that adverse childhood experiences were common in this group: by 54 months old, nearly 53% had experienced at least one adverse experience and 2.6% had experienced 4 or more. These adverse experiences were consistently associated with family income, deprivation, mother's education and age, and partner's age. The study also found a clear dose-response association between adverse experiences and school readiness.

School starting age and child development in a state-wide, population-level cohort of children in their first year of school in New South Wales, Australia.

Hanly M, Edwards B, Goldfeld S, Craven R, Mooney J, Jorm L and Falster K
Early Childhood Research Quarterly v. 48 3rd Quarter 2019: 325-340
This article looks when a child starts school in New South Wales and how this influences their development. In New South Wales, children born between January and July have the choice to start school in the year they turn five, or delay entry until the year they turn six. Using administrative data for children who started school in 2009 or 2012, the article first explores the child, family, and neighbourhood characteristics associated with whether a family delays a child starting school. It then investigates whether starting age has an impact on development, as measured by the Australian Early Development Census (AEDC). The analysis finds that a quarter of eligible children delayed starting school until the year they turned six - children from socioeconomically advantaged neighbourhood or boys in particular. It also finds a significant relationship between school starting age and development - with each month of maturity associated with an increased likelihood of better development. The article concludes by discussing how the results compare with previous research and the policy implications.

Evaluation of the KindiLink Pilot Initiative in Western Australia

Edith Cowan University. Early Childhood Research Group, Western Australia. Dept. of Education
Perth, W.A. : Western Australian Dept. of Education, 2018.
KindiLink is a supported play group initiative for Aboriginal families in Western Australia. The program aims to improve children's social, emotional, language and cognitive capabilities before pre-school and forge strong and supportive links between families and schools. It is delivered in 37 primary schools by early child teachers and Aboriginal Indigenous Education Officers. This report provides an evaluation of the implementation and outcomes of the program from 2016-2018. It is presented in 4 volumes: Overview and Key findings, Survey data, Case studies, and Reflective journal. The evaluation found that Aboriginal and non-Indigenous children derived considerable learning, social and emotional benefits from KindiLink, with a positive influence on their transition to and attendance at Kindergarten. The families enjoyed their experience and gained considerable confidence and capacity.

Changing the life trajectories of Australia's most vulnerable children. Report no. 2, The first twelve months in the Early Years Education Program - an initial assessment of the impact on children and their primary caregivers

Tseng Y, Jordan B, Borland J, Coombs N, Cotter K, Hill A and Kennedy A
Parkville, Vic. : University of Melbourne, 2018.
The Early Years Education Program is an early years care and education program in Victoria targeting children who are exposed to significant family stress, abuse, or social disadvantage. The program aims to address the consequences of family stress on children's development and ensure that at-risk and vulnerable children arrive at school developmentally equal to their peers and equipped to be successful learners. This is the second report from an evaluation of the program, and looks at the impacts on children and their carers after the first 12 months of enrolment. A total of 145 infants and toddlers were recruited to the EYEP trial, from 99 families engaged with family services or child protection services. Outcomes include IQ, language skills, protective factors related to resilience, social-emotional development, carer psychological distress, and the home environment. This second report found that the benefits of the program are encouraging but not as yet conclusive.

Preschool and children's readiness for school.

Warren D, Daraganova G and O'Connor M
Growing Up in Australia, the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children - annual statistical report 2017. Melbourne : Australian Institute of Family Studies, 2018: 73-86
Children's development as they begin school is vitally important for their educational pathways, with children who start school with weaker skills tending to continue to struggle. This chapter explores the association between preschool participation at three and four years of age and school readiness, using data from the Australian Early Development Census (AEDC) linked to data from 'Growing Up in Australia, the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children' (LSAC). It compares attendance at preschool, long day care, and no formal care, at age three and at age four. The findings show that there is an association between preschool attendance and children's development at school entry, particularly for those developmental domains closely related to learning. However, some factors associated with the decision to enrol a child in a preschool program are also strong predictors of developmental outcomes, such as parental education, socioeconomic status, and 'investment' in children. Note, these children started school in 2009, before the introduction of funding for universal preschool access for four year olds.

The health and wellbeing of Tasmania's children and young people report 2018

Tasmania. Office of the Commissioner for Children and Young People
Hobart, Tas. : Commissioner for Children and Young People Tasmania, 2018.
This report updates the 2017 publication 'Health and wellbeing of Tasmania's children, young people, and their families'. This report series will present the latest statistics on key indicators of children and young people's health and wellbeing in Tasmania, and annual updates will be released to update existing indicators and add additional data. This 2018 edition has 4 parts. Part 1 provides population and demographic data, part 2 looks at early childhood and the transition to school, part 3 focuses on middle childhood and adolescence, and part 4 concerns targeted services and systems, including child protection, family violence intervention, and homelessness and housing services.

Growing up in New Zealand - a longitudinal study of New Zealand children and their families: transition to school

Morton S, Grant C, Walker C, Berry S, Meissel K, Ly K, Marks E, Underwood L, Fa'alili-Fidow J, Wilson S, Pillai A and Kim H
Auckland : Growing up in New Zealand, 2018.
Growing Up in New Zealand is a longitudinal study following the growth and development of children in New Zealand, from pregnancy until aged 21 years old. This report presents information from mothers during the transition to school period. It aims to measure individual, family, and school indicators of children's school readiness and so enable an assessment of how it might impact upon child development. Sections include: experiences and uptake of the free preschool health and development check, concerns and referrals from the check, participation in early childhood education, school transition activities, mothers' experience of their child's school transition, children's experience of starting school, difficulties and how long they lasted, school choice, school attendance, class size and learning environment, school food programmes, getting to and from school, before and after school care, moving to another school, parental satisfaction with school, and parental involvement at school. Note, this 72 Month Data Collection was the first wave designed to be self-completed by mothers online. Though the participation rate was high (84%, or 5,709 mothers), this is lower than previous rates and non-participants were significantly more likely to be from disadvantaged groups than those who did participate.

What promotes social and emotional wellbeing in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children? Lessons in measurement from the Longitudinal Study of Indigenous Children.

Marmor A and Harley D
Family Matters no. 100 2018: 4-18
Though social and emotional wellbeing is an important outcome for policy makers in health and education, it is not adequately reflected by mainstream mental health assessment tools - in particular for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families. This article aims to identify the early childhood factors associated with later social and emotional wellbeing when the child is ready to start school, and to develop a new indicator that could capture a more holistic view of wellbeing. It draws on data from the Longitudinal Study of Indigenous Children to look at selected individual and family factors during pregnancy and up to 2 years of age compared to children's prosocial behaviour, mental health, connectedness, and other surrogate proxies for social and emotional wellbeing at school commencement. Though the authors were unable to create a single index of social and emotional wellbeing, the findings highlight the need to apply caution in applying Western biomedical health and wellbeing measures to Indigenous concepts and states.

School readiness of maltreated children : associations of timing, type, and chronicity of maltreatment.

Bell M, Bayliss D, Glauert R and Ohan J
Child Abuse and Neglect v. 76 Feb 2018: 426-439
This article examines the impact of child maltreatment during early childhood on school readiness. Data from the Australian Early Development Census was linked to information on substantiated and unsubstantiated child maltreatment allegations, including age, number, and type of allegations. The study found children with a maltreatment allegation were at increased risk of poor school readiness. Substantiated maltreatment was associated with poor social and emotional development, and children with unsubstantiated maltreatment allegations were also at risk. The implications for school support and interventions are briefly discussed.

Evaluation of the Child and Parent Centre Initiative: final report

Shelby Consulting, Western Australia. Dept. of Education
Perth, W.A. : Dept. of Education, 2017.
The Western Australian Government's Child and Parent Centre initiative aims to support families with developmentally vulnerable children. The Centres operate on public primary school sites in collaboration with nongovernment community services, and target families with at risk children from before birth to four years of age. It aims to close the gap between the development, health, and learning outcomes of young children, particularly those at risk of not achieving their potential. This report presents the findings and recommendations of an evaluation of the initiative, focusing on the 16 Centres that had been established by 2015 and their initial, short term outcomes. The evaluation examined progress towards meeting key objectives, outcomes, and deliverables and the elements for success and sustainability. The evaluation found that the Initiative is being implemented as intended and is on track to delivering the desired outcomes at this initial stage of implementation. The centres are improving access to early learning, early childhood education and community services, which have previously been largely independent of each other, with a focus at this stage on parenting, health and early learning services.

Changing the life trajectories of Australia's most vulnerable children. Report no. 1, Participants in the trial of the Early Years Education Program

Tseng Y, Jordan B, Borland J, Clancy T, Coombs N, Cotter K, Hill A and Kennedy A
Parkville, Vic. : University of Melbourne, 2017.
This report describes the characteristics and family backgrounds of children taking part in the three-year trial of the Early Years Education Program (EYEP) in Victoria. EYEP is an early years care and education program targeting children who are exposed to significant family stress, abuse, or social disadvantage. The program aims to address the consequences of family stress on children's development and ensure that at-risk and vulnerable children arrive at school developmentally equal to their peers and equipped to be successful learners. A total of 145 infants and toddlers have been recruited to the trial, from 97 families engaged with family services or child protection services. Even relative to children living in low socioeconomic status households, these children are highly disadvantaged and their carers have fewer personal and social resources available to face the challenges of parenting.

The Starting School Study : mothers' perspectives of transition to school.

Kaplun C, Dockett S and Perry B
Australasian Journal of Early Childhood v. 42 no. 4 Dec 2017: 56-67
The Starting School Study explored the transition to school from the perspectives of parents living in a disadvantaged area of Sydney, Australia. Fifty-seven parents participated in semi-structured interviews about their child's transition to school between 2009 and 2011. Topics discussed included: preparation for school, the first day, school relationships, supports and barriers to involvement, and aspirations. A team of researchers working collaboratively in 2011 consolidated national and international research and theory of transition to school, to develop and publish an aspirational document entitled 'Transition to school: position statement'. The statement recognised and promoted the importance of transition to school using four constructs: opportunities, expectations, entitlements and aspirations. The results of the Starting School Study are discussed using these constructs. Overall, mothers in the study valued education, wanted their children to achieve and be successful, and hoped their children would have positive experiences of school; better than their own. The pivotal role of the teacher is discussed.

Lifting our game: report of the review to achieve educational excellence in Australian schools through early childhood interventions

Pascoe S and Brennan D
Melbourne, Vic. : Victorian Government, 2017.
This independent review was commissioned by state and territory officials in Australia to make recommendations on the most effective interventions in early childhood, with a focus on school readiness, improving achievement in schools, and future success in employment or further education. The review finds that quality early childhood education makes a significant contribution to achieving educational excellence in schools, with growing evidence that it improves school readiness, lifts NAPLAN results and PISA scores, raises year 12 completion rates, and reduces the need for additional support - particularly so for vulnerable or disadvantaged children. The wider benefits and return on investment are also considered. This report presents the findings and recommendations of the review.

Growing up in New Zealand - a longitudinal study of New Zealand children and their families: now we are four - describing the preschool years

Morton S, Grant C, Berry S, Walker C, Corkin M, Ly K, De Castro T, Atatoa Carr P, Bandara D, Mohal J, Bird A, Underwood L and Fa'alili-Fidow J
Auckland : Growing up in New Zealand, 2017.
Growing Up in New Zealand is a longitudinal study following the growth and development of children in New Zealand, from pregnancy until aged 21 years old. For Wave 1, a main cohort of 6,822 women and 4,401 of their partners were interviewed in 2010, during pregnancy or just after the child's birth. This report presents data on the children in their preschool years, now that they are four years old. Topics include health, development, family and whanau, housing, and income, with information provided on diet, sleep, illness, health care, immunisations, media use, screen time, physical activity, social and emotional functioning, behaviour and conduct, self control, language and communication, household structure, parenting, inter-parental relationships, mother's health, early childhood education and care arrangements, home learning environment, school readiness, residential mobility, housing tenure and stability, parental work and income, area level deprivation, and material hardship. The conceptual framework, cohort retention, and data completeness are also discussed.

Health and wellbeing of Tasmania's children, young people, and their families report: Part one, Early childhood and the transition to school, Part two, Middle childhood and adolescence, Part three, Parents, families and communities

Tasmania. Office of the Commissioner for Children and Young People
Hobart, Tas. : Commissioner for Children and Young People Tasmania, 2017
This set of reports provides an overview of some of the issues facing children, young people, and parents in Tasmania. It collates the latest statistics on key indicators of children and young people's health and wellbeing and identifies gaps in the research base. The 3 parts have been progressively released into one document. Part one, 'Early childhood and the transition to school', covers demographic information and key indicators relating to early childhood and the transition to school, including birth rate and maternal background, nutrition, early learning and development, and school readiness. Part two, 'Middle childhood and adolescence', focuses on the time of entering primary school to turning 18 and moving on to further education and employment, and includes information on health behaviours, suicide, fertility, alcohol and drugs, educational attainment, crime, and youth detention. Part three, 'Parents, families and communities', looks at parent-related factors such as parental health, income and housing, child abuse and family violence, and supports. An updated version will be released annually, updating the existing indicators and adding additional data.

Family and community predictors of comorbid language, socioemotional and behavior problems at school entry.

Hughes N, Sciberras E and Goldfeld S
PLoS ONE v. 11 no. 7 May 2016: Article e0158802
Both socioemotional and behavioural difficulties and speech-language difficulties affect many pre-school aged children, and these difficulties are highly comorbid, with nearly three quarters of children with socioemotional and behavioural difficulties also having clinically significant language deficits and over half of children with diagnosed language deficits having socioemotional and behavioural difficulties. This article examines this overlap between these difficulties using a population-based sample, rather than a clinical population, and investigates the family and community-level risk factors involved. It analyses data from the School Entry Health Questionnaire of Victoria, for the 53,256 children who started school in 2011. The study found that 15% of children were classed as having speech-language difficulties, nearly 9% of children were classed as having socioemotional and behavioural difficulties, and just over 3% of the children experienced both. The study identified that five factors predicted comorbidity, with higher likelihoods for children with multiple factors: witnessing violence, a history of parent mental illness, living in more deprived communities, and the fathers or the mothers educational attainment.

Children's Centre evaluation: evaluation report : a report on the measurement of process and impacts

Fraser Mustard Centre, South Australia. Dept. for Education and Child Development, Telethon Kids Institute
Adelaide, SA : Fraser Mustard Centre, 2016
The South Australian government has developed 'Children's Centres for Early Childhood Development and Parenting' to bring together a broad range of early childhood services to provide better support to families with complex needs and disadvantage. As part of a three-year evaluation, this report investigates the processes and impacts of the service. It assesses whether effective pathways and referrals are provided, whether the range of services meet community needs and how they vary between sites, system-level supports and challenges, facilitators and challenges for integration, the processes that facilitate effective responses by partnerships and governance groups, who is accessing services, impact on parenting practices and parent wellbeing, and the impact of attending a Children's Centre preschool on school readiness. This quantitative component is the final stage of the evaluation and builds upon the themes identified in earlier focus groups and interviews. It draws upon survey data, administrative data, and de-identified Australian Early Development Census (AEDC) data linked to government preschool data.

Five challenges in Australian school education

Masters G
Camberwell, Vic. : Australian Council for Educational Research, 2016.
Though Australia's students perform well by international students, quality schooling can never be taken for granted and there have been declines in performance in some areas. This paper highlights five challenges facing the education system today - as well as their possible solutions - as a starting point towards improving education in Australia. These are: Equipping students for the 21st Century, in part by increasing reading, mathematical and scientific literacy levels; Reducing disparities between schools, particularly along socioeconomic lines, by ensuring that every student has access to an excellent school and excellent teaching; Reducing the 'long tail' of underachieving students who fall behind year-level curriculum expectations and thus fail to meet minimum international standards; Getting all children off to a good start, by reducing the number of children who begin school with low levels of school readiness and so are at risk of ongoing low achievement; and Raising the professional status of teaching, by increasing the number of highly able school leavers entering teaching.

Literature review relating to the current context and discourse surrounding indigenous early childhood education, school readiness and transition programs to primary school

Krakouer J
Camberwell, Vic. : Australian Council for Educational Research, 2016.
This literature review provides an overview about the factors that ensure an effective transition to school for Aboriginal children and the role that television can play in achieving it, utilising a positive, strengths-based perspective. It is undertaken as part of an evaluation of the School Readiness Initiative (SRI) television series, which is supported by the Dusseldorp Forum. The SRI TV series aims to provide insight into mainstream schooling culture and thus improve the school readiness of Indigenous children. This report reviews current knowledge on Indigenous early childhood education, Indigenous school readiness, educational television and childhood development, and school transition programs for Indigenous children.

Strengthening Aboriginal child development in central Australia through a universal preschool readiness program.

Moss B, Harper H and Silburn S
Australasian Journal of Early Childhood v. 40 no. 4 Dec 2015: 13-20
This paper papers examines a recent example of a transition-to-preschool program in regional Australia. The program is significant in linking Aboriginal child health and early childhood learning services. The discussion is drawn from a mixed method evaluation undertaken at the end of the program's first two years of funding. Evaluation findings suggest that many barriers to participation in early childhood learning programs for Aboriginal children can be reduced with responsive support. The study points to the need for funding for innovations to be seen as an essential investment, not an unwanted cost.
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