Release type: Joint Media Release

Date:

Extra $2.7 Million to Help ACT Students with Disability in Government Schools

Ministers:

Senator the Hon Jacinta Collins
Parliamentary Secretary for School Education and Workplace Relations

 Over 1800 Canberra students with disability in government schools will get greater access to classroom support, thanks to $2.7 million in funding from the Gillard Government’s More Support for Students with Disabilities initiative.

Parliamentary Secretary for School Education Senator Jacinta Collins said this funding is in addition to the previously announced funding to Independent and Catholic Schools, bringing a total of $3.4 million to help better support ACT students with disability.

"This funding, part of our overall $200 million national initiative, will provide much-needed specialist support and assistance to over 2000 students in government, independent and catholic schools across the ACT."

"Children with disability can face disadvantage in achieving education and employment outcomes, and without this type of support students with disability are less likely to reach their full potential, putting them at greater risk of unemployment and social exclusion."

Minister for Education and Training, Chris Bourke MLA, said that the extra funding to both government and non-government schools is welcome in the ACT.

"We know that due to this initiative all Canberra schools will have more capacity to meet the educational needs of students with disability," said Minister Bourke.

"In the government sector, the provision of 84 Disability Education Co-ordinators, one in every public school across Canberra, will help disabled students integrate into the school community and make sure they can access the resources and care they need—both inside and outside of school hours."

"In addition, public school teachers and principals will be able to better support disabled students with the roll out of a new $200,000 training package to be delivered by the University of Canberra, which is also set to form part of induction training for every new public school teacher."

"Successful new teaching strategies and support methods developed under this initiative will be shared with teachers, schools, students and parents around the country," Senator Collins said.

"We’re also making a real difference for families through initiatives such as the $220 million Helping Children with Autism program and the $147 million Better Start for Children with Disability program. We’re also developing the nation’s first National Disability Insurance Scheme," Senator Collins said.

"Rolling out the More Support for Students with Disability funding is an important part of this commitment."