Innovative Policy 2020 on Inclusive Education and ICT

A rights-based approach for young people to have a place in mainstream classrooms

The Department of Education’s Inclusive Education Policy, implemented in 2018, is designed to ensure that students with disability in Queensland state schools receive the support they need to belong to the school community. It includes all state schools and educational settings, and obliges them to comply. Each school is allocated appropriate resources and funding, for example, to improve school accessibility and make reasonable educational adjustments. In 2019, 103,542 students with disability attended Queensland’s 1,241 state schools.

“Mercedes loves going to school because she has many friends and receives a lot of support there.”

Renéemother of a child with a disability
About the policy at a glance
Laws and regulations involved:Inclusive Education Policy
Responsible Body:Queensland Department of Education
Country
of Implementation
Australia/ Queensland
Start Year2018

FACTS & FIGURES

  • In 2019, 95 per cent of students with disabilities attended mainstream state primary and secondary schools.
  • In 2019, Queensland had 53,000 teachers and 19,000 support teachers.

PROBLEMS TARGETED

The 2017 Queensland Disability Review found that while there was commitment and evidence of good practice among Queensland state schools, there was a need for further improvement to lift outcomes for students with disability.

SOLUTION, INNOVATION, AND IMPACT

The policy enables all children and young people across Queensland – from all social, cultural, community, and family backgrounds – to attend their local state school. Specifically, it provides four main areas of support: (1) to attend and participate in school, (2) to learn in a safe and supportive environment, (3) to achieve success academically and socially through reasonable adjustments, and (4) to access and participate in education.

The policy is supported by a coordinated systematic approach, led by senior executives across central and regional offices. Individual implementation support is provided by regional inclusion coaches.

There are 1,241 state schools in Queensland with a total of 53,000 teachers and 19,000 support teachers, who are responsible for making reasonable adjustments for students with disability. In 2019, more than 103,500 students received reasonable adjustments as a result of their disability to enable them to access and participate in education on the same basis as their similar-aged peers. Moreover, various therapists, nurses, and coaches provide further support.

The policy is enforced through monitoring academic achievement, attendance, and absenteeism related to behaviour, and the number achieving a certificate of education.

Three girls are hug and smile at the camera, while wearing their uniforms.

Children with and without disability are learning together in school.

FUNDING, OUTLOOK AND TRANSFERABILITY

The budget for 2019/2020 is USD $1,04 billion and the Department of Education allocates resources to state schools based on the level of reasonable adjustment needed to enable students with disability to access and participate.

Other Australian states have adopted elements of the policy; and the Department of Education believes that the policy could be easily replicated, since the policy itself and supportive materials are publicly available.

FACTSHEET

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