Improving children’s well-being and school readiness in Derby

One of only four communities invited to participate in the Early Years Partnership, the Kimberley town of Derby was selected as EYP’s remote community partner. It joins the ‘metropolitan’ community of Armadale West, the ‘very remote’ community of Bidyadanga and the ‘regional’ community of Central Great Southern.

Derby, including the communities of Mowanjum and Pandanus Park, was chosen as the remote community of the Early Years Partnership due to the demonstration of interest and capacity to benefit, including:

  • A need for better outcomes for children under school age and their families
  • Sufficiently broad and genuine interest within the community to achieve change, and
  • A level of capacity to do so.

At the 2016 census, Derby had a population of 3,325, with 47.2% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent. Along with Broome and Kununurra, it is one of only three towns in the Kimberley to have a population of over 2,000.

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Australian Early Development Census (AEDC)

The Australian Early Development Census (AEDC) is a nationwide data collection of early childhood development at the time children commence their first year of full-time school.  The AEDC highlights what is working well and what needs to be improved or developed to support children and their families by providing evidence to support health, education and community policy and planning.

The AEDC is held every three years, with the ​2021 AEDC data collection being the ​fifth collection. The census involves teachers of children in their first year of full-time school completing a research tool, the Australian version of the Early Development Instrument. The Instrument collects data relating to five key areas of early childhood development referred to as ‘domains’. These include:

  • Physical health and well being
  • Social competence
  • Emotional maturity
  • Language and cognitive skills (school-based)
  • Communication skills and general knowledge

The AEDC domains have been shown to predict later health, wellbeing and academic success.

For more information about the AECD see Australian Early Development Census – Department of Education, Australian Government.

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Carers and young children enjoying interactions with each other

Upcoming Events

Derby is always full of new and exciting things to see and do. With plenty of activities on the calendar, you’re sure to find something free and fun to do with your family.

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Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we meet, work and live, and recognise their continuing connection and care to land, water and community. We pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging.