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Parents’ Newborn Baby Companion Gets A New Look

18 February 2016

The record book of key health and developmental information for new parents about their newborn baby is getting a fresh look, new content and a new name, highlighting the central role of parents in the Education State as their child’s first teacher.

The Andrews Labor Government is updating the My Health, Learning and Development Record — commonly known as the Green Book — with ways parents can support children’s learning during the all-important early years from birth to three.

Launching the new edition at Hazel Glen Maternal and Child Health Centre, Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos said parents will start to receive the new Green Book from next month.

An important record of a child’s health, growth, development and immunisations throughout their early years of their life, the Green Book is given to all Victorian parents after the birth of their baby.

It is used by health professionals, including maternal and child health (MCH) nurses, to monitor a child’s development outcomes to ensure they are receiving the right support.

Responding to the changing needs of Victorian families, the new guide includes:

  • illustrations to make essential information easier to understand for parents who aren’t fluent in English
  • ideas for helping newborn babies learn and develop from birth
  • more information on vital early years services including websites and other digital resources that offer advice to parents and carers

Last year more than 78,000 copies of the Green Book were delivered to all maternity hospitals in Victoria.

The Education Department regularly receives requests for copies of the Green Book from Victorian families living interstate or overseas. This week alone, the Department sent the book to a Commander of the Royal Australian Air Force stationed in Vancouver and to Embassy staff based in the USA.

The Labor Government is making Victoria the Education State – this starts with giving every Victorian child a healthy start in life.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos

“We know that simple ways parents can engage with young children, such as reading, makes a big difference later in life, with positive effects on kids’ health, learning and wellbeing.”

“Children who have a happy, healthy and strong start in life are more likely to do well academically and socially as they grow older.”

“We are making Victoria the Education State and this starts right from birth.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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