My Say My Way – inclusive voice platform for complex learners

About the MSMW project

My Say My Way (MSMW) is a CESE-led initiative to develop a suite of accessible student voice tools to collect data on the educational experience and wellbeing of students with disability and/or complex learning needs. MSMW will develop the department's inclusive voice platform.

  • Schools have told us they experience an equity gap for students with disability.
    "Most of the students [with disability] are excluded from current student voice tools, my students have a voice, and we need to listen."
    Staff, Support Unit, Metro High School.
  • To develop a solution, CESE are building on previous work from the Disability Strategy to lead the development of a new suite of accessible student voice tools to collect data on the educational experience and wellbeing of students with complex learning needs.
  • The tools will include layered surveys to allow for different levels of cognitive and communication supports, as well as a flexible digital interface that can be personalised with different assistive technologies. The platform will capture both student and parent/carer voices.
  • Our vision is for every NSW public school student with a disability to have the opportunity to share their voice.
Photo of young girl with glasses smiling at the camera. Photo of young girl with glasses smiling at the camera.

Why do we need MSMW?

The department's main student voice tool, Tell Them from Me, is inaccessible for some students with disability and/or complex learning needs. This means that there is an important equity gap in our system.

Existing commercial tools on the market are not fit for purpose for these students. MSMW is a way of providing adjustments and accommodations to maximise the number of students who can share their voice through accessible survey tools.

What will MSMW look like?

MSMW will provide a customised platform, allowing teachers to select and personalise the most relevant survey tools and gain ongoing data to support planning. There are 3 proposed tools:

  • ­Student accessible survey that can be personalised using different visual support systems on the platform.
  • Arts based methods (ABMs) – participatory activities that can be used to creatively support students to 'voice' their responses e.g., guided photovoice, body mapping, interviews using AAC supports.
  • Parent/carer insight tool to capture further data from parents/carers of students with complex needs, acknowledging their role as advocates for and experts on their children and young people. This also acts as a 'wrap around support' for students with the most complex needs.

My Say My Way (MSMW) will deliver a suite of accessible student voice tools that are useful, fit for purpose and adaptable for different school contexts.

The tools will be delivered on a digital platform to:

  • Provide equitable access to capture the voices of students with complex learning needs about their educational experience and wellbeing at school.
  • Support consistent collection, analysis and tracking of data at the classroom, school and system level.
  • Help to deliver on the strategic direction in the Plan for NSW Public Education:
    • that every student is known, valued and cared for
    • to embed diverse learner, family and staff voices in decision-making.

At the centre of this project are the diverse range of people who will use the MSMW tools – students, teachers, school leaders and parents/carers – working and learning in a wide range of settings across NSW public schools.

We use a human-centred design thinking approach, working collaboratively with schools during the design and testing process. This involves:

  • Understanding the needs and complexities of schools, asking key questions to better appreciate their day-to-day routines and challenges.
  • Putting on different lenses in our design process to ensure the schools’ learnings and ideas are reflected in the tools.
  • Generating ideas with schools and key stakeholders as we examine different options so we can share ideas freely.
  • Testing prototypes and encouraging open and honest feedback. Through imperfect iterations, we can gradually refine and improve our work to ensure that the tools are fit for purpose.

Critically, we work in ways that seek to balance the need to minimise workload burden on schools, whilst ensuring robust school input to generate high quality end products.

We are currently engaging with schools and key stakeholders to design preliminary prototypes, and will be further testing and developing more closely with schools from Term 3.

Infographic showing term 2 and terms 3 and 4 actions Infographic showing term 2 and terms 3 and 4 actions

To express your interest in participating in MSMW, complete this form.

For more information, please email


  • Disability
  • Inclusion
  • Student engagement and wellbeing

Business Unit:

  • Centre for Education Statistics and Evaluation
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