School operations

Transition — Early Childhood to School


Tools to support effective transition and differentiated learning

The Department’s Transition to School Resource Kit offers practical guidance and strategies to support positive transitions and provides useful information on transition planning including key activities, timelines and evaluation.

While it is likely the entire 2021 cohort may need universal support, with more of a focus on social and emotional development, vulnerable children may require a differentiated learning approach.

To identify children experiencing vulnerability you can use the Students at Risk Planning Tool (login required) which helps you to assess, plan and provide for their needs. Regional Health and Wellbeing key contacts can support schools to use the tool.

Once you’ve identified the children requiring differentiation, consider the options to best support them in your school’s local context. A child’s Transition Learning and Development Statement is an invaluable source of information and will assist you to plan for differentiated and continuity of learning.  

Schools should consider using their equity funding to further support children from disadvantaged backgrounds. Equity funding is one of the tools schools can use to respond to the needs of their vulnerable cohorts. The funding can be used for social disadvantage, children with disabilities and for English as an Additional Language.

Schools can also pool this funding with other schools in their network to strengthen their response and strategies to deliver effective transitions during more challenging circumstances.

Information on equity funding is available at Student Resources Package — Equity Funding (Student Based Funding).

Supporting vulnerable cohorts

Curriculum planning

  • The VCAA’s VEYLDF Illustrative Maps link the learning and development outcomes of the Victorian Early Years Learning and Development Framework to the F-2 levels of the Victorian Curriculum. The maps can help prep teachers better understand and build on the learning and development that has already occurred prior to children starting school.
  • Using high impact teaching strategies or HITS can contribute to learning. There are ten instructional practices prep teachers can use, including one focused on differentiated teaching. The HITS guide is available on the Department’s High impact teaching strategies website.

Assessments of learning and development

  • English Online Interview assesses children’s English skills (reading, writing and speaking and listening). Schools are required to use this tool for each new prep cohort, usually during Term 1.
  • Mathematics Online Interview assesses the mathematical understanding of children during the early years of school. Schools are encouraged to use this tool which can help teachers plan to meet children’s learning needs.

Other Department resources

For early childhood professionals

Moving to primary school (transitions) which includes:

For school teachers

For parents

External resources

To access transition learning and development statements (TLDS) for students starting at your school through the Insight platform, refer to the VCAA website:

Resources page containing supporting resources and links for this topic

Reviewed 20 October 2020

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