Encouraging reading and school readiness in the East Kimberleys

Encouraging reading and school readiness in the East Kimberleys


At Bayulu Remote Community School in the East Kimberleys, books from the ILF Book Supply Program are fostering literacy among preschoolers and Kindergarten to Year 6 kids alike.

Around 100 students are enrolled in the school which is on Gooniyandi country, 15 kilometres south of Fitzroy Crossing. Most of the kids travel into school each day by bus from one of six outlying communities: Bayulu, Gillaroong, Karnparrmi, Joy Springs, Ngalingkadji and Mimbi.

Kriol is the first language spoken here, with Standard Australian English an additional language. Once a week, the kids also take lessons in either Gooniyandi or Walmajarri.

The school is on Gogo cattle station, and early each term teachers visit the various communities to meet and get to know the kids’ parents. A box of books gifted by our Foundation is taken out each time and the teachers talk to the parents about ways they could use the books at home with their children.

Engaging the parents is also a priority in the school readiness program for 3- to 5-year-olds that is run at Bayulu one day each week.

“It might just be sitting and looking at the pictures and talking about them,” says Jane Salt, the Deputy Principal. “We give them books from ILF to take home and keep, and encourage them to share them around with others in the community.”

Another box of books from ILF is kept in the community clinic, so that kids have something to read or look at while waiting to see the doctor or nurse. The supply is replenished each week.

“They’re such beautiful books, and of such quality. The suitability for each age group is great, as are the links to Indigenous culture in so many of them. We really appreciate the support the Foundation gives us in this way.”

 

 

  • Posted 19 September, 2018

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