Australia’s national education evidence body

Transitions between outside school hours care and school

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Transitioning to school and between educational settings is a significant milestone for children and families. Successful transitions lead to better outcomes for children and enhance continuity of learning and development. A successful transition occurs when a child and their family feel a sense of belonging in their new environment.

Educators, teachers and school and service leaders are uniquely placed to support children and families in establishing and maintaining a sense of belonging at critical transition points.

The evidence-based practices presented in this guide can be used to support children’s transitions:  

  • from before-school care to school
  • from school to after-school care.

It is designed to help services and schools work together to achieve more successful transitions. We recommend school and OSHC leaders set up a meeting once each term to discuss the strategies presented in this guide and make a plan for the following term.

The guide is organised into two distinct categories:

Many ECEC services and schools already plan for transitions with a child-centred approach and draw on collaborative partnerships to enhance the process. However, many educators and teachers would also like to gain a better understanding of how these practices look in action. Some of the examples offered here may not apply in all contexts or be appropriate for all children. Reasonable adjustments should be made where necessary to ensure appropriate support is provided for children with disability or developmental delay and to accommodate families across different contexts and cultures.

To support the content covered in this guide, we spoke to Principal Carrie Connors and OSHC Managing Coordinator Pam Kildey, both of Kuluin State School in Queensland. You can view videos of Carrie and Pam discussing how they navigate child-centred approaches and collaborative partnerships, in their particular context.

To find out more about the research and evidence behind this practice guide, see our evidence summary.

Collaborative partnerships

Child-centred transitions

Our transitions resources were developed in partnership with Monash University and the National Outside School Hours Services Alliance (NOSHSA). AERO appreciates the valuable input from the Transitions Project Advisory Group (PAG) members, the Practitioner Working Group (PWG) and expert reviewers Dr. Jennifer Cartmel and Dr Bruce Hurst.


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