MSPGH-DET Partnership

Research to Policy - Improving child health and wellbeing through population level data


The Melbourne School of Population and Global Health (MSPGH) led by The Jack Brockhoff Child Health and Wellbeing Program and the Victorian Department of Education and Training (DET) undertook a partnership from 2011 to 2015.This partnership was a unique collaboration between government policy makers and public health and education researchers and aimed to improve the health, wellbeing, learning opportunities and life experience for children across Victoria by informing policy priorities using a population approach. The partnership utilised a series of population wide surveys held by DET to conduct broad policy related analyses.

View Final Report

Projects Undertaken

  1. The health and wellbeing of children as they enter school
    • Identifying health trends in early childhood
    • The identification of indicators of disadvantage for emotional and behavioural wellbeing in children
    • The establishment of norms for the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) for young Victorian children
  2. What factors within an ecological framework influence child education outcomes
    • What is the impact of emotional and behavioural difficulties at school entry on educational outcomes at Grade 3? How do these impacts vary by socioeconomic status?
    • Investigating associations between family stressors and Year 3 education outcomes
  3. Use of Early Childhood Education and Care services
    • How the use of early childhood services is reflected by social, economic and demographic factors
    • What is the difference between children that do and do not repeat Kindergarten
    • Which children are not attending Kindergarten
    • What child and family factors are associated with not attending Maternal and Child Health services
    • Two other discrete pieces of research undertaken were the MCH data standards review and the School Funding Reform Analysis.
  4. MCH Data Standards
    • The data that is currently collected by DET from the Maternal and Child Health service is being reviewed to enable a more informative outcomes based data collection to be established. This review aims to create an outcome framework and reporting framework that is closely aligned to a data dictionary for both child and family outcomes.
  5. School Funding Reform Analysis
    • The School Funding Reform Unit has been investigating the case for funding low achievement in addition to family background characteristics. This research project adds to this body of knowledge by successfully constructing a model that shows the most powerful predictive variables for literacy and numeracy at Grade 3.

Academic Staff