Steve is not only the principal at Miles State School, he’s also the parent of one of the 12 school students that are currently taking part in the program.
Health-e-Regions is a partnership between Shell’s QGC business and the University of Queensland’s Centre for Online Health.
It links students at schools in Miles, Wandoan, Chinchilla and Tara to health specialists at UQ in Brisbane – providing them with access to one-on-one support through telehealth.
At Miles the focus is on improving speech and language, while other schools also access occupational therapy and audiology testing.
“We decided to participate in the program as a way of supporting child development and we have noticed an increase in the number of students presenting with speech and language issues in recent times,” Steve said.
While Health-e-Regions is just one part of the school’s holistic approach to speech and language for students, Steve said it was an important one because of its accessibility.
“The program provides levels of access to speech pathology services that may not otherwise be possible for our students and their families,” he said.
“Students who may not have had access to therapy outside of school due to cost, travel time and distances are now receiving one-on-one support and therapy.”
“We are getting some really good outcomes. We are seeing kids able to socialize better, being able to communicate better, it all adds up.
“People have commented on an overall improvement in our child’s ability to communicate with her peers, teachers and other staff. She is becoming more confident, more social and more capable in the classroom. She actively socialises and her friends can understand her which makes for a positive experience and sense of wellbeing.”