What is the Early Education Program?
Aurora Early Education offers support to deaf children and their families in a centre based program. Our overall aim is to enable children to maximize their development, particularly their communication, in a safe and secure environment with the support of their teachers and the children who participate with them.
We share knowledge and skills with families, provide support and promote an understanding of the impact of a hearing loss.
Who are we?
Aurora’s Early Education program is funded through the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development. We are a bilingual, statewide, centre based program for young deaf and deafblind children. Our program includes deaf children with additional needs.
Who is eligible for our service?
Children who have a hearing loss which averages 40 dB and above over both ears. These children are eligible for the fitting of hearing aids or an assistive hearing device. The program is available to Victorian children from the time of diagnosis until they start attending school.
Who are our staff?
Our Early Education program is provided by Teachers of the Deaf, with the support of Deaf Educators, Speech Pathologists, a Social Worker, Psychologist, Occupational Therapist, Audiologist and Physiotherapist.
Do we charge fees?
We ask all families to make a voluntary contribution annually.
What do we do?
We work directly with children in small group environments focusing on learning through play. Programs are developmental with particular emphasis on communication. We work in partnership with families building on the child’s strengths and competencies setting mutual goals that meet the child’s needs and respond to parents’ priorities. Our program embraces both spoken language and Auslan to ensure children acquire at least one strong language in the early developmental years.
In addition to the child’s group program families can also access :
Consultancy to other programs - Kinder, childcare
Support to caregivers other than parents
Liaison with Australian Hearing and Cochlear Implant Clinic and other service providers who may be working with the family
Professional development programs
Where are we?
The program is located at Blackburn.
What happens when we receive an enquiry?
Staff promptly make personal contact with families to organize an information visit at 96 Holland Road , Blackburn South. This is an opportunity to find out about our program and whether it will meet their needs for a group program.
Families may apply for access to transport for children who live in Southern, Northern or Eastern Metropolitan Melbourne.
For families living some distance away, limited accommodation is available on–site to enable children to attend the program
What happens next?
When families join our program we allocate a group program—Beginners, Kinder or Prep. Programs are usually determined by age. As part of the enrolment process, Staff will visit the family home to discuss the child and his/her needs. Shortly after there is a transition meeting where family and professionals involved with the child can share information with us.
When are we available?
The program runs on a termly basis in line with DEECD Schools timetables.