Distance education preschool

NSW distance education preschool is a state-wide provision that provides educational programs and support for geographically isolated children the year before they start Kindergarten.

Distance education preschool caters for children who cannot access other early childhood education services on a regular basis. The provision is for children who live 48 kilometres or more from local early childhood education services, including community-based preschools, mobile children’s services and, or long daycare. Eligibility for distance education preschool is determined by the distance education enrolment procedures (PDF 346 KB).

Distance education preschool is a state-wide service that operates from Dubbo School of Distance Education and School of the Air Broken Hill. The educational program, ‘Outback 2 Ocean Preschool’ (O2O), offered from these schools is designed to meet the needs of children across the state and support a smooth transition to the child’s closest school.

Distance education preschool staff provide preschool programs to children who cannot access a regular, face-to-face program due to a lack of early childhood services or distance to local preschools. Preschoolers work with distance education staff from their house, caravan or farm. Distance education preschool also supports small schools with school transition programs.

NSW Distance education preschool operates 4 classes as a single coordinated provision across the state with dedicated staff located at Broken Hill and Dubbo.

The preschool program

Preschool sessions cover a range of learning experiences and opportunities through:

  • flexible, child-centred, fun and interest-based activities
  • the ‘Preschool in a box’ learning resources delivered to the child’s site includes materials to support activities such as library books, construction sets, art and craft and more.
  • involvement of the parent/, caregiver or supervisor in the learning experiences.
  • engagement in early literacy and mathematics lessons.
  • online sessions that allow preschoolers to connect, play and learn with their peers and teachers.
  • mini school hubs where school meets on a property or community place.

Within the preschool program:

  • each child has a program designed to meet their interests and needs in all development areas – program design is informed by the Early Years Learning Framework.
  • regular opportunities to participate in live sessions via an online platform with teachers and peers.
  • children engage in activities that are led by their teacher and supported by their parent, caregiver or supervisor.
  • parents, caregivers and supervisors play a vital role in the preschool program by implementing the program and providing feedback to the teacher in a range of forms – including videos or photos to assist and track a student's learning progress.
  • various forms of field services are offered which enhance the learning program.
  • parents, caregivers and supervisors are supported in their role through written and, or interactive feedback.
  • children generally attend departmental preschool classes for 15 hours per week for one year only.

Enrolling in a distance education preschool

Children are eligible for enrolment at the distance education preschool from the beginning of the school year if they turn four years of age on or before 31 July in that year.

Enquiries specific to enrolments in distance education preschool can be directed to either School of the Air Broken Hill or Dubbo School of Distance Education.

School of the Air Broken Hill
Lane Street, Broken Hill NSW 2880
Phone – 08 8087 3565
Email – schoolair-p.school@det.nsw.edu.au

Dubbo School of Distance Education
Myall Street, Dubbo NSW 2830
Phone – 02 5804 7000
Email – dubbo-d.school@det.nsw.edu.au

For general enrolment enquiries please contact Rural and Distance Education.

Rural and Distance Education
140 William Street, Bathurst NSW 2795
Email – RDE@det.nsw.edu.au


  • Early childhood education
  • Teaching and learning


  • Early learning

Business Unit:

  • Educational Standards
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