Get to know your host school and local hubs network
The quality of the relationships you establish with colleagues at your school*, local families, your hub support network and external partners will be the most important ingredients for your hub to be successful.
Building strong relationships takes time and needs to be a constant priority.
What works – insights from hub leaders
Building positive relationships with school colleagues
- Get to know the teachers and educational support staff at your school, including the administration team and any multicultural aides. Invite them into the hub so they understand what happens at the hub and can tell parents what you do – these people are your front-line advocates.
- Attend staff meetings and school assemblies when you can. Speak at these forums to raise awareness of the hub and its activities.
- Remind your school colleagues to refer families into the hub and encourage students to bring their families in to have a look.
- Find ways to support the principal and teachers – small gestures of support go a long way towards building positive relationships.
- Invite school staff to make use of the hub to deliver special programs to their students outside the classroom. For example, speech therapy sessions, bike safety classes, a homework club or breakfast club.
- Catch up with a different teacher for lunch when you can.
Demonstrate the value and relevance of the hub
- Share stories about successes with colleagues, school leaders, and in the school newsletter.
- School readiness is a priority for schools. Transition programs, playgroups and other early learning activities are likely to be viewed favourably by the school leadership team.
- Find opportunities to demonstrate how the hub can help to achieve some of the school’s main goals and objectives.
- Get involved in whole-of-school activities whenever possible, for e.g. the annual fete, NAIDOC Week activities – offer the hub space as a venue that’s available to host associated activities.
Learn from other hub leaders
- There’s a great deal of knowledge and experience across our hubs network. Connect to other hub leaders across the network through your local hub leader meetings, our national buddy program and the regular, informal hub leader dial-in sessions.
- Make full use of the information and tools available on our website.
- Remember: you’re not alone. Reach out and ask for help when you need it.
“You cannot separate a community hub from the rest of the school. You really need to be able to embed the whole community hub philosophy throughout the school. The teachers, the assistant teachers, the staff in the office … everybody needs to be part of that community hub understanding.”
“Schools are very busy so it’s not easy to organise activities. We have a Hub committee that includes our speech therapist, the viceprincipal, about four parents and me. We work out what we want to do and prioritise the activities we want to do for the year. We usually have a list of 10 activities.”
“By involving the school in the planning, this helps me build relationships and keep the school staff involved in the hub.”
* Purely for ease of expression, we will refer only to host schools during the rest of this guide, rather than host schools and community centres.