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P1 Transition Practitioner

The High School of Dundee has created a brand-new role, devoted to helping children negotiate one of the most important steps in their education.

In January 2022, HSD Nursery Early Years Practitioner Nikki Stewart became the School’s very first Early Years Transition Practitioner, a post which has been created to help children make the crucial jump from nursery to primary 1.

Working closely with class teachers in P1 and with Nursery staff, Nikki’s focus is to ensure that the step up for every child is as smooth and seamless as possible and the role is unique in being dedicated to the management of the transition process.

The Transition Practitioner will work in both the High School of Dundee Nursery and in the School’s Early Years classes across each session, supporting children in the transitionary period in the latter half of their pre-school year and the early months of P1.

As well as enhancing the transitional experience for children moving from the School’s Nursery into L1, Nikki  provides additional support for pupils moving to L1 from external nurseries, and ensures that any High School of Dundee Nursery pupils who are going on to other schools are ready and prepared.  

"Taking our little people to a big place"

Planning, developing and extending learning for children in conjunction with the class teacher; accompanying school staff when they visit children in external nursery settings and supporting these children when they visit the school or nursery; and accompanying children for transition visits to other schools, are all tasks which she will take on. 

Head of Junior Years at the High School of Dundee, Julie Rose, said, “We are delighted to have been able to create this role, and thrilled to have been able to appoint Nikki.

“We took the decision to create it because of the importance of ensuring that every child can build upon their nursery experience, and have as smooth a start as possible in school. Our goal is to support children to take the step between nursery and school through a planned, safe and nurturing approach. These early years are a crucial period to establish firm foundations for holistic development and the optimum wellbeing of a young person, so the value in having a role that is devoted to ensuring that each child receives the best transition experience possible cannot be overstated, especially following on from the pandemic, which has brought so much uncertainty and change for our children.

“Being able to make the move to school with a member of staff they know and love, will, we hope, ease some of the concerns that parents and children can naturally have about changing environments.”

Nikki said, “I’m delighted to have taken on the role. Making the move from nursery to P1 is a huge step in a child’s life, and it can be both exciting and a little daunting for them. The best way to describe it is, taking our little people to a big place.

“Being able to work with the children, their parents and staff to help manage this process is something I very much look forward to.”