Ready for primary school checklist

The first day of Kindergarten is a big event for your child and your family. Use our checklist to make sure you are prepared for the big day.

Checklist before you start

  • If your child attends an early childhood education service, talk to staff about their transition to school.
  • Attend a school orientation or transition to school program and make sure you have the school’s phone number.
  • Take your child to your local community health nurse or doctor for a health check and make sure their immunisations are up to date before school starts.
  • If your child takes medication or has an allergy, a medical condition or additional needs, inform the school as early as possible and make an appointment to speak with school staff.
  • Apply for a school Opal card if needed. Go to or phone 131 500.
  • Organise outside of school hours care. Your school can give you information about these services in your area. The Child Care Subsidy helps eligible families with the cost of childcare for outside of school hours.
  • Connect with other parents and carers on social media.
  • Write down the school start date. The school calendar lists school term dates.

The night before

  • Lay out your child’s clothes, shoes and socks.
  • Make your child’s morning tea and lunch and put it in the fridge.
  • Help your child pack their school bag.
  • Pack a spare pair of underpants, socks and a change of clothes. Let your child know these are there in case they have any toilet accidents at school.

The big day

  • Be confident with your child and let them dress themselves as much as possible.
  • Tie back or plait long hair.
  • Apply sunscreen and get your child to wear their hat on the way to school.
  • Don’t forget to take photos.

Saying goodbye

At first, you might like to stay for a while until your child feels secure at school. When your child has settled into school, a short and reassuring goodbye encourages independence. Let them know who will pick them up at the end of the day, and make sure you or that person picks your child up on time.

Picking up children at the end of the day

When school finishes each day, your child’s class will gather at a regular place. Your child’s teacher will wait with the children. Make sure your child and their teacher know who will be collecting them each afternoon. This could be a parent, a carer or an after school care worker.

Children can get upset if the person picking them up comes late. Check with their teacher about the best time to arrive in the afternoon and where to stand.

Tips to prepare for the transition

Explore Preparing for primary school for ideas on how you and your child can prepare for the transition to primary school.

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