Course helping keep every child safe around roads

Two students in school uniforms lean over an array of cards on the floor
Image: Students complete a road safety activity

Online resources, localised visuals and custom social stories are just some of the ways schools are learning to keep students with disability safe at a two-day workshop run by the Department’s Road Safety Education team.

Teachers at Carenne School in Bathurst recently attended one of the team’s road safety education workshops, and have adapted ideas from the online ‘Safety Town’ resource to meet the learning needs of their Stage 1 students.

The school has also created visual social stories using images of their students modelling how everyone needs to act outside the gate when entering and leaving their school.

These are now displayed at entry and exit points to remind students, parents and carers of how to be safe in and around traffic environments.

Carly Sewell, the Road Safety Education Officer for the Bathurst area, said such measures would assist students in any setting.

“Localised visuals are a great way to talk about and model expected safe road user behaviours around the school community and are helping students to develop essential life skills to keep them safer as road users,” Ms Sewell said.

“These key road safety messages are reinforced on a daily basis to remind everyone of the positive behaviours needed to remain safe in and around the school grounds.”

Staff who teach students with disability are welcome at any of the Road Safety Education team’s professional learning courses, but Carenne staff chose to attend a session specifically designed for those who teach in schools for specific purposes (SSPs) and support classes.

Road Safety Education Advisor K-12 Tracy Knights said the professional learning offered at all courses was relevant to teachers of students with disability, but that the ‘Road Safety Education for SSPs and Support Unit Teachers K-12’ course offered the opportunity for staff who worked in similar settings to network and learn from one another.

“Working with SSP and support unit teachers is great because they know what their kids need, and they don’t work from a deficit model,” said Ms Knights. “We guide teachers on how to give their students road user skills to be as independent as possible”

“In our workshops the teachers can also be more specific with their examples– we can discuss taxi transport, wheelchairs and bike programs.”

Courses offered by the Road Safety Education team cover content from the PDHPE K-10 syllabus and Stage 6 Life Ready course. Find out more at the Road safety education: Professional learning webpage.

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