State Govt will invest $1.9m over 2 years in asset investment for 2 new Child and Parent Centres on public school sites
Works include a new building at Challis Early Childhood Education Centre & an upgrade at Brookman Primary School
New facilities are part of a $28.8m investment over the next 4 years to establish 10 Child and Parent Centres in WA
Education Minister Liz Constable today announced capital works for new Child and Parent Centres at public schools in Armadale and Gosnells worth $1.9million.
The State Government will invest $1.5million in new facilities at Challis Early Childhood Education Centre, while Brookman Primary School will benefit from a $400,000 upgrade.
The Government will spend $10.9million across Western Australia on new buildings and refurbishments to accommodate Child and Parent Centres which will provide integrated services for children and parents including early learning playgroups, parenting workshops and child health.
“These two centres will provide support and services to some of the most vulnerable children and their families in the Armadale and Gosnells areas,” Dr Constable said.
“The centres will ensure that children are well-prepared to start school.
“This is part of a $28.8million investment over the next four years to establish 10 Child and Parent Centres in WA.
“With public schools in almost every community in WA, it makes sense to establish these centres at school sites where they can be easily accessed by families.”
While Brookman Primary School’s Child and Parent Centre is expected to officially open in January 2014 and the new building at Challis Education Centre expected to open in January 2015, services will be offered for families as soon as co-ordinators are appointed at each school site later this year.
Challis Early Childhood Education Centre principal Lee Musumeci said the centre would build on the success of existing services for children in the early years, such as playgroups, a program for three-year-olds and programs to support parents.
“We brought integrated services on to the school site six years ago after our data showed young children desperately required intervention, therapy, assessment and counselling,” Ms Musumeci said.
“Since then, we have managed to close the massive gap in reading, phonics and maths between our students and the WA average. Our students even surpassed the average last year, which is absolutely incredible.
“This new centre will enable us to do more work with parents from the time mothers become pregnant right up until children start school as we can give them as much targeted support as they need.”
Brookman Primary School principal Hans Geers said the entire school community welcomed the announcement of the Child and Parent Centre.
“We are already working with speech pathologists and occupational therapists to help young children with speech difficulties,” Mr Geers said.
“The school council, P&C and parents are all delighted about the centre because we know that being able to identify these problems early will be of great benefit.
“We have run a trial of a playgroup on site which has been highly successful. School staff and other professionals have worked with parents on how to best help their children at an early age.”
The departments of Education and Health and the Department for Communities will work together to deliver services at each Child and Parent Centre
Centre co-ordinators will begin working with their communities & agencies later this year
Minister’s office - 6552 5700