Our Place: Opening the School Gates to the Community
presentationposted on 01.12.2020, 00:54 by Alexandra Fraser, Margaret Rutherford
The built environment plays an important role in the Our Place approach to improving outcomes for children, families and communities. Our Place is a holistic place-based approach to supporting the education, health and development of all children and families in disadvantaged communities. It utilises the universal platform of a school. Single, shared entrances in Our Place sites are a key feature of the approach. This entails a deliberate attempt to change the way schools are used by communities and the way services and supports are offered to vulnerable families. The expansion of the Our Place approach from one site to ten schools across the state has brought about many barriers to implementing the ideal entrance concept. This is due to the diverse nature of the communities and the differences in the level of influence over building design and construction. In the absence of a formal evaluation of the single, shared entrance concept, this paper will explore emerging themes around scaling up the Our Place outcomes focused, place-based initiative utilising schools as a universal platform.