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It’s good to recognise and value the diversity of your school’s community. This is at the heart of any successful hub.
Think about the families and students at your school. For example:
- What is most important to them?
- What is unique about your school community?
- What assets exist in your school community and the community around you?
Staff can use an online course to look at some of these questions. The course is called Schools as Community Hubs – a practical guide for schools and preschools. You will need a Department for Education login. If you are on a governing council, school staff can organise access.
Get people involved from the start. Ask students and families about what is most important to them. Ask them how they would like to get involved. This can create a sense of belonging and a feeling of real ownership.
Don’t forget also talk to:
- your school’s volunteers
- the local council
- local community and sporting groups
- local TAFE if there is one
- service agencies and organisations.
‘Get to know your community, get to know your people, get to know what matters to them.’
- School governing council chair
Watch this video from Cowandilla primary school about building connections with your community.
Cowandilla Primary School – schools as community hubs
You need to know your school’s community to build strong connections.
All hubs are different, and are developed to meet local needs. The model you use depends on what works for your school.
Help students learn to read and play
- Parents took the initiative to improve reading at Morphett Vale Primary School. Watch the parents making a difference to their child's learning video (YouTube, 2 minutes).
- At Littlehampton Primary School, staff, students and local businesses worked together to create a new learning and play space – watch the video (Facebook, 1 minute).
Create a sense of safety and belonging
- Students and families from Cowandilla Children’s Centre collaborated with Aboriginal artist Scott Rathman to design a piece about the importance of reading and connecting with community. See Cowandilla's designs on Twitter.
- An Indigenous garden created for the students at West Lakes Shores School. The garden was created by the students, Aboriginal leaders, and Nature Play. Watch the West Lakes Shores School garden video (Facebook, 6 minutes).
Set up formal partnerships
- The South Australian Secondary Training Academy (SAASTA) partnered with Hansen Yuncken and Aboriginal owned Registered Training Organisation Carey Training. They worked together to deliver a Certificate II in Construction in a culturally appropriate and engaging way for Aboriginal students.
- Peterborough High School worked collaboratively with TAFE SA, Regional Development Australia, Department of Human Service and the students themselves to look at ways to improve learning outcomes. Watch this video on how and why they did it.
Peterborough High School – schools as community hubs
Schools as Community Hubs
Phone: 8226 2479
Email: education.sach [at] sa.gov.au