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New school education pages focus on early intervention
Wednesday 18 May 2016 – 10:00 AM

​New and improved school education pages on the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) website provide a suite of fun and engaging resources to teach children about hazards. 

The new webpages include classroom lesson plans, teaching resources and interactive activities on fire, natural hazards, and safety and emergency prevention for children. A new ‘Kids’ page also provides young children with easy access to interactive ‘Bushfire Patrol’ games, the ‘Be Safe Around Water’ app and colouring in pages.

The educational materials are intended for primary school teachers and support staff, school aged children from pre-school through to Year 12 and their parents.

The resources for teachers are grouped by age range to make it easy to find materials that are relevant for their students, and also include excursion and visit information.

DFES Director of Community Engagement Suellen Flint said the aim of the changes is to make the school pages simpler to navigate and to provide users with easier access to resources.

“DFES Community Engagement held a workshop last year to help determine the priorities for action from our School Education Strategy,” Suellen said. 

“The workshop involved education representatives from a wide range of organisations including the Department of Education, the School Curriculum and Standards Authority, principals associations and teachers. 

“Professor Kevin Ronan, who leads the Child Centred Disaster Risk Reduction project for the Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre, also provided input into the workshop. 

“He discussed the importance of educating children as a way of reducing current risk, reducing future risk and increasing resilience.”

President of the Primary School Principals Association (WA) Stephen Breen said research from around the world shows that early intervention is the key with educating children on risks.

“We need to be proactive at the earlier end,” said Stephen. “We need to focus on long term planning and early intervention.”

Suellen said these are the objectives behind providing the updated educational resources.

“The feedback we received throughout the workshop was very valuable in helping shape our direction and we have a number of new interactive resources to make learning about hazards more appealing to children.”

The page can be found at dfes.wa.gov.au/schools or for more information please contact the School Aged Programs Coordinator on 9395 9864 or email elizabeth.addison@dfes.wa.gov.au​.