NDIS rollout: many more students, marginally more money
- A new funding model will provide marginally more dollars to a larger amount of students who have an ascertained disability in receipt of the funding.
- Implementation of the NDIS comes at a time when members are already frustrated in their attempts to provide support for students with a disability.
- IEUA-QNT position paper being developed incorporating key recommendations.
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is to be completed in 2019.
This has the potential to significantly alter the expectations of teachers, particularly given the lack of clarity around the relationship between intervention, which is funded by the NDIS, and education, which is not funded by the NDIS.
The new funding model will provide marginally more dollars to a larger number of students who have an ascertained disability in receipt of the funding.
Approximately 460,000 people will participate in the NDIS nationally by 2020 with an estimated $22 billion to fund the full scheme.
In comparison over the next 10 years, the federal government has committed to a recurrent investment of $249.8 billion for government and non-government school funding.
The federal government, while in the midst of considerations for funding Australian schools, has given little regard to adequately funding students with a disability.
Teachers who have students with disabilities in their classrooms need to have proportionate support of student needs compared to the number of students with disabilities.
How will this impact on teachers?
The Queensland government has stated that education and training providers have an obligation to make reasonable adjustment for students with disability, regardless of their NDIS eligibility, under the Disability Standards for Education.
However, implementation of the NDIS comes at a time when members are already frustrated in their attempts to provide support for students with a disability, especially in schools with high numbers of students with diverse needs.
Any requirement to create or develop individual education plans or attend meetings for students with special needs, or develop alternative teaching and assessment materials, must come with provision of additional time and funding.
Teachers and schools are not appropriately funded or resourced to provide intervention services: specially trained staff and resources are required to adequately support the inclusion of students with additional needs.
Additional resources must be provided by the employer so that individual teachers do not face additional stress or increased workloads as a result of inclusion.
In preparation of the rollout of the NDIS, our union is developing a position paper around supporting inclusion of students with disabilities, incorporating key recommendations.
Over time, our union will seek to modify collective agreements to incorporate explicit clauses relating to inclusion of students with additional needs.
Correction: This article was originally published on 6 March 2018 and incorrectly stated that the "introduction of the NDIS marks a fundamental change in the way schools will receive funding to support inclusion of students with additional needs".