Head office team visit Ultimo Primary School
The Sector > Provider > General News > Early Childhood Outcomes team goes back to school to deepen their understandings

Early Childhood Outcomes team goes back to school to deepen their understandings

by Freya Lucas

April 16, 2024

Ten members of the New South Wales Department of Education’s Early Childhood Outcomes team recently went ‘back to school’ to get a first hand look at what transferring from the world of early childhood education and care (ECEC) to school looks like. 


The School Experience Program (SEP) is incredibly popular, with NSW Department of Education senior executives and new corporate staff leading the charge in 2023, and the program being opened to all office staff in 2024. 75 groups have been booked in to participate thus far. 


During the SEP, participants get a firsthand experience of what it’s like to work at a school, covering everything from witnessing lesson planning and delivery, to sitting in on lessons, observing staff meetings and management, as well as playground duties and excursions.


The Early Childhood Outcomes team spent the day at Ultimo Public School earlier this month, gaining valuable insights into how impressionable young pre-schoolers can transition into primary school.


They were joined by Deputy Premier and Minister for Education and Early Learning Prue Car and Department Secretary Murat Dizdar to officially launch the next phase of the program.


Elizabeth Burford, Manager Policy and Strategy, Early Childhood Outcomes, said the opportunity to participate in the program was “a fantastic opportunity to speak directly with the principal and teachers to get their perspectives on the cognitive and social skills required for children to achieve success at primary school.”


“From our perspective, it’s important to set kids up with a level playing field when they enter the classroom so they make the most of it,” Ms Burford said.


Her colleague, Alicia Peck, Leader, Business Support Early Childhood Outcomes, agreed.


“It was just a really valuable experience to see firsthand a day in the life of a school and to interact with these amazing students and even more amazing teachers,” she added.


The Early Childhood Outcomes team proved to be a great fit for the inner-city primary school, Principal Olivia Parry said.


“Some of the things that we were talking about were transition programs with early learning centres and the challenges we face in that space, as well as some of the things that we are doing here to support students who are coming into Kindergarten,” she explained.


“Being able to have those conversations face-to-face is so much more powerful.”


The one-day SEP program is open for teams of up to 10 within the Department and can be tailor-made to align with the work of a given group. More information is available on the School Experience Program Team Visits information page.


Image shows Alicia Peck (Leader Business Support Early Childhood Outcomes), Mark Barraket (Deputy Secretary, Early Childhood Outcomes), Prue Car (Deputy Premier), Olivia Parry (Ultimo Public School Principal), Elizabeth Burford (Manager Policy and Strategy, Early Childhood Outcomes), Kobi Shetty (MP) and Murat Dizdar (NSW Department of Education Secretary) with students at Ultimo Public School.

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