The Andrews Labor Government is giving more students with disabilities access to outside of school hours care, with two additional specialist schools to pilot a new care program.

Member for Bendigo West, Maree Edwards and Member for Bendigo East, Jacinta Allan today announced Kaliana School, in conjunction with Bendigo Special Development School, will offer out of school hours care and school holiday programs in Term 3 and 4, 2018.

The $7.2 million program – which will also run at Yarrabah School and Laurimar Primary School – was announced as part of a $61 million funding package to support inclusive education initiatives across Victorian schools and early childhood services.

Approximately 100 students will be able to participate at each after school hours program, which will run five days a week over the second semester. Each school will also offer a holiday program for 40 hours a week during the Term 3 and summer school holidays until school resumes in February 2019.

This demonstration program aims to address the gap in outside school hours care services for students with disabilities and make it easier for parents and carers to re-enter the workforce or increase their working hours.

The $61 million suite of inclusive education initiatives were announced in direct response to issues raised by parents and carers of children with disabilities in a series of roundtable discussions with Premier Daniel Andrews.

It also includes $12 million to buy specialised equipment to help students with their learning, $6.5 million for scholarships for teachers and other school staff in special education and $6.4 million to upgrade early childhood infrastructure and equipment.

Victoria is investing more than $5 billion to build the Education State where every person, regardless of their circumstances and location, can have access to a great education.

Quotes attributable to Member for Bendigo West, Maree Edwards

“These programs will give students with disability much-needed support outside school hours while making it easier for parents and carers to increase their working hours or re-enter the workforce.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Bendigo East, Jacinta Allan

“Inclusive education is so vital because it gives students with disabilities and special needs the same opportunities as everybody else so that no one misses out.”

Posted by:Maree Edwards MP