School support for teens with disability

12 - 18 years
Student and teacher

Students with disability have rights to access and participate in education on the same basis as students without disability. Here is what you need to know about how schools can support your teen’s learning.

As a parent or carer, you can choose which school you think will be the best for your teenager with disability. This could be the local school in your neighbourhood, a specialised unit within a regular school, or a specialised school just for students with disability. However, your choice may be constrained in some locations by catchment rules, applying to all students.

Regardless of the type of school your teen attends, there are things the school should do to support the access, learning and participation of students with disability. These requirements are set out in the Disability Standards for Education.

The Disability Standards for Education

The Disability Standards for Education were created as part of the Disability Discrimination Act 1992. The Standards aim to ensure that students with disability are able to access and participate in education on the same basis as students without disability. ‘On the same basis’ means a student with disability must have opportunities and choices which are comparable with those offered to students without disability.

The Standards set out the rights of students and the legal obligations of education providers across the areas of:

  • making reasonable adjustments (such as providing text books in braille or installing building ramps)
  • enrolment
  • participation
  • curriculum development, accreditation and delivery
  • student support services
  • the elimination of harassment and victimisation.

More information on the Standards can be found here.

Got concerns?

If you are unhappy or are worried about your teen’s access to or participation in education, talk with their teachers or the school principal. It is illegal for a student to be discriminated against because of disability, so your teen’s school will have policies and processes in place to help you.

For more information check out the Student Wellbeing Hub.

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Last modified
1 August 2019