Many Victorian primary schools set up ‘buddy’ systems for Prep children with older students in primary school. For Year 6 students transitioning to secondary school, a buddy system may be established with students from that secondary school. This is to help students starting at a new school have a welcoming experience from the very beginning.
The benefits of a buddy system are twofold - the older children learn to take on responsibility, while the younger children know that they have a fellow student they can confidently turn to for support.
Buddy systems help to promote friendship and support between older and younger peers through regular collaboration between their classes, creating a sense of whole-school community. They also create friendships that enable both older and younger buddies to bond more closely with their school, increasing the likelihood of more positive school behaviour for all students.