The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) provides increased choice and control to participants and their families on how disability services and supports are delivered. As a result, principals may receive parent/guardian/carer requests to allow NDIS funded therapists to:
- observe a student in the classroom or in the school environment
- attend a Student Support Group meeting, to monitor and tailor the support provided to the student.
These requests can generally be accommodated by schools and complement holistic student planning and support processes. The sharing of information and insights about student strengths and areas of development can provide valuable and mutual benefits to all parties.
Principals may also receive requests for NDIS funded therapists to deliver ongoing therapy at school. These guidelines have been prepared to assist principals in responding to these requests.
Department of Education and Training (Department) Position
The Department is committed to supporting NDIS participants, and their families, to optimise the benefits offered by the NDIS. Consistent with this commitment, Victorian Government schools are encouraged to accommodate students and their parent(s) exercising choice and control in relation to NDIS supports.
On this basis, requests for NDIS funded therapy to be delivered at school should be approved unless the specific circumstances raise practical, legal and/or educational issues that make the approval of the request unfeasible or unreasonable.
The purpose of these Guidelines is therefore to assist principals to deal with each request by:
- recommending a consistent 3 step process to follow
- highlighting key considerations that a principal must take into account when making a decision
- providing templates for liaising with all relevant parties and establishing practical arrangements.
The Department has designed a three step process to assist principals in finalising their response to therapy requests on a case by case basis.
Step 1 – Gather information
The principal asks the therapist and parent(s) about the therapy proposed to be provided at school, and the reasons for this request (refer to: Step 1 – Request information).
Step 2 – Make and communicate decision
The principal considers the request in light of all relevant factors and makes a decision as to whether the therapy can be provided on school grounds. This decision is communicated to the therapist and parent(s) (refer to: Key Considerations and Step 2 – Make a decision).
Step 3 – Practical arrangements
If the principal approves the therapy to be provided at school, appropriate arrangements are put in place. This includes ensuring relevant forms and agreements are completed by the therapist (refer to: Step 3 – Practical arrangements).
Reviewed 28 September 2021