Remote Kindergarten program expansion announced for Queensland

by Freya Lucas

November 26

Thirty additional state schools will benefit from the formalisation of Queensland’s Remote Kindergarten Program over the next two years, Education Minister Grace Grace announced yesterday. The program has been running as a pilot since 2016, and the Minister’s announcement transforms the pilot into a “full ongoing program from the start of 2019”

 

“The Palaszczuk Government is committed to supporting kindergarten participation to ensure all children have a great start to learning and life, regardless of where they live across the state,” Ms Grace said.

 

“The Remote Kindergarten Pilot has been very successful in helping achieve this aim, and expanding into 30 more schools will provide much needed access to kindergarten for more than 100 extra children in remote areas that are located more than 50 kilometres from the nearest kindergarten service.”

 

Existing teachers will deliver the program, with the inclusion of an additional 20 hours per week of teachers aide time to support supervision. A dual benefit, Ms Grace said, as the appointment of teacher’s aides would give an important employment boost in the most remote communities which are currently experiencing drought and struggling with sustainable employment.

 

“The Remote Kindergarten Program provides an important complement to the Queensland Government’s ekindy program, which involves a combination of online distance education supplemented by parental education at home.” Ms Grace said. She then added that the 14 hours per week of parental input required for ekindy can be difficult to achieve in circumstances such as drought, where parents are required to put so many hours into keeping farms operating.

 

“Having a range of flexible options for families is important. We are also developing a long-term Rural and Remote Kindergarten Strategy to build on the gains made so far and explore additional and flexible kindergarten delivery options that are responsive to local community needs,” Ms Grace said.

 

President of the Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association, Tammie Irons, said she welcomed not only the expansion of the Remote Kindergarten Program, but the ongoing certainty provided to schools involved in the pilot of the program.

 

“Face to face education is so important for children living in rural and remote parts of Queensland and the expansion of this program will ensure more kids have access to it,” Ms Irons said.

 

In 2018, 38 remote schools are prescribed to deliver a Remote Kindergarten Program, with 109 children currently participating across 30 schools.

 

For more information on the Remote Kindergarten Program, visit www.qed.qld.gov.au/earlychildhood/families/remote-kindergarten-pilot

 

LIST OF STATE SCHOOLS FOR INCLUSION IN THE REMOTE KINDERGARTEN PROGRAM EXPANSION IN 2019 AND 2020:

 

School Department of Education Region
Arcadia Valley State School Darling Downs South West
Baralaba State School Central Queensland
Bauhinia State School Central Queensland
Begonia State School Darling Downs South West
Bollon State School Darling Downs South West
Builyan State School Central Queensland
Carmila State School Central Queensland
Chillagoe State School Far North Queensland
Clarke Creek State School Central Queensland
Coppabella State School Central Queensland
Duaringa State School Central Queensland
Dunkeld State School Darling Downs South West
Gogango State School Central Queensland
Hebel State School Darling Downs South West
Isisford State School Central Queensland
Jericho State School Central Queensland
Kilcummin State School Central Queensland
Kindon State School Darling Downs South West
Lochington State School Central Queensland
Miriam Vale State School Central Queensland
Mistake Creek State School Central Queensland
Monogorilby State School Darling Downs South West
Morven State School Darling Downs South West
Nebo State School Central Queensland
Rolleston State School Central Queensland
Rosedale State School North Coast
St Lawrence State School Central Queensland
Teelba State School Darling Downs South West
Ubobo State School Central Queensland
Yuleba State School Darling Downs South West
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