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Minister announces funding to support local Indigenous children in early childhood education

NSW Minister for Early Childhood Education, Hon. Sarah Mitchell together with Member for Oatley, Mark Coure MP, attended Learning Links Preschool Peakhurst to announce $6,900 in government funding to support early childhood education for Indigenous families residing in the local community.

The 2018 Community Grants Program will promote educational access for Indigenous and disadvantaged children in our local area, said Learning Links CEO, Ms Birgitte Maibom.

“The aim of the program is to increase the number of Indigenous children and disadvantaged children participating in 600 hours of quality early childhood education in the year before school at our Learning Links Preschool,” said Ms Maibom.  

“More than 32% of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities reside in Sydney, representing approximately 2.5% of our local population.  

“This vital funding will provide the opportunity to incorporate culturally specific programs promoting educational access for Indigenous children, as well as initiatives to improve the educational experiences and outcomes for those children attending our service.

“We will be purchasing culturally appropriate toys, books and artwork to help staff embed Indigenous culture into the everyday curriculum at our preschool. In addition, preschool staff will be attending an Aboriginal Early Childhood Conference in 2019.

“Incorporating these learning resources in our program will assist in developing vital relationships and connections with our local Indigenous communities and above all, improve the overall learning experiences and outcomes for our children.

“Inclusiveness is a key principle of our preschool, we place great emphasis on the importance of inclusion. We teach our children to understand and learn from each other. Such experiences assist in maximising a child’s learning ability and well-being as they progress to primary school.

“We are very grateful to the Minister and Mr Coure for their support to deliver valuable programs that promote our rich diversity of culture, language, abilities and experiences and encourage a strong sense of well-being in our children,” said Ms Maibom, CEO Learning Links.