Children with disability face some big hurdles when it comes to getting a quality education. Results from a national survey conducted by Children with Disability Australia (CDA) found that over two-thirds of children with disability do not receive adequate support at school and one in four had been refused school enrolment. The survey also showed that 17 per cent of children and young people with disability are only offered part-time enrolment.
In a statement to F2L the Minister for Education and Training, Christopher Pyne said the Australian Government supports the fundamental right of all children and young people with disability to access education on the same basis as their peers without disability. “This is why the Disability Standards for Education 2005 (the Standards) were enacted in 2005. The Standards explain the obligations education and training providers, including schools, have towards students with disability,” Minister Pyne said. The Australian Government has commenced a review of the effectiveness of the Standards for Education which is conducted every five years. The review will take into consideration progress which has been made since the 2010 Review to support the learning needs and inclusion of students with disability.
“CDA has been invited to participate in the review process and I hope that they will, drawing on their existing knowledge of the views of their members and their experience of working with the Standards since 2005 and the first review in 2010. In particular, the recent CDA survey on the education experiences of students with disability should be a valuable source of contemporary information for their submission,” he said.
“The voices of students and parents are critical to the DSE Review process. Through the fully-accessible 2015 Review website, members of the public can leave comments on the discussion forum, sharing their own story on the website, or by making a formal submission, which can be in video, audio or written formats. I encourage everyone who has an interest in education for students with disability to contribute to the review.” The Minister added that the Australian Government does not play a direct role in the day-to-day management of Australian schools with responsibility for the delivery of school education, including policies and practices around access and inclusion, resting with the states and territories. In circumstances where there are concerns about the application of the DSE in practice, parents are encouraged to contact the relevant education authority.
As part of its commitment to a quality education for students with disabilities, a funding loading to support students with disability was introduced by the Australian Government in 2014. The 2015-16 Budget is providing over $5 billion in Commonwealth funding for students with disability over 2014-2017 and includes more than $1.3 billion in the 2015-16 financial year.
For more information on the review process visit: www.dsereview.urbis.com.au/2015-review-of-the-disability-standards-for-education-2005