Trauma-informed practice for NSW Department of Education staff

Project summary


The vision is to transform the NSW Department of Education into a trauma-aware system. This will be achieved by giving staff across the state access to a continuum of professional learning in trauma-informed practice (TIP), comprising a foundation course and two advanced courses, supported by a network of experienced facilitators. These courses will provide resources to train, “school and departmental leaders in evidence-based approaches to support students with disability” which is a commitment articulated in the Disability Strategy. Furthermore, the courses will meet commitment 1.1 from the Disability Strategy, “Build on suite of core, advanced and specialist professional learning”.


  • Teachers have the skills and confidence to work with students impacted by trauma.
  • By developing trauma-informed schools we create the conditions to enable students impacted by trauma to engage successfully with education and achieve academic and life outcomes commensurate with their peers.

What will success look like?

  • Teachers are equipped with knowledge and resources that enable them to identify and support students impacted by trauma
  • Students impacted by trauma demonstrate measurable improvements in their learning and wellbeing, including an increased sense of belonging
  • Schools across the state are supported to embed principles of trauma-informed practice in their schools.

How will success be measured?

  • Participant feedback is received through survey responses.
  • We will explore additional opportunities for measuring the success of these initiatives, including the impact on students.

Key project milestones

  • 27 May - Train more than 200 facilitators to deliver the foundation course
  • 1 June - Complete the pilot for the Advanced Leadership course
  • 12 July – Complete the Pilot for the Advanced Specialist course
  • Term 3 - Establish Communities of Practice across the state to support the rollout of the foundation course
  • Term 3 – Complete the evaluation of both advanced courses
  • Term 4 – Train facilitators to deliver both advanced courses
  • 31 December – Deliver the foundation course to staff at more than 200 schools across the state including those in rural and remote and regional areas
  • Term 1 2022 - Make both advanced courses available to staff across the state.

Project Governance

  • Division: Learning Improvement / School Performance North
  • Project executive: Executive Director, Inclusion and Wellbeing
  • Project lead: Director, Disability Strategy / Director, Delivery Support, Student Support and Specialist Programs
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