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Supporting English as an Additional Language (EAL) at transition to school - Building relationships - Community involvement

​Successful transition to school is characterised by reciprocal communication, trust and respect for diversity.

Early childhood services and schools often have close connections with diverse communities, such as religious or cultural communities. Members from such communities can provide essential links between schools and culturally and linguistically diverse families, and help in the transition process.

When educators involve the community in the transition process this helps:

  • support children’s adjustment to the school setting
  • families to build a sense of belonging and connectedness to the school community.

Services and schools can be co-located and provide ‘community hubs’, others can provide space that serves the same purpose: to provide opportunities for families to connect and make friendships, develop a sense of belonging, learn new skills and undertake volunteer work. For some families a ‘hub’ is their first interaction with the school or care environment.

You will see examples in the case studies and video vignettes where families come to the school to learn English, join the bilingual storytelling or participate in the playgroup. Young children, who are not yet at school, will be brought along. This introduces the children and their families to the school environment and helps children settle more easily when they eventually move into the first year of school.

Watch Building relationships with children and their families.

Watch Supporting transition to school.