What an Access request is, and when your child might need one.
Local schools are well equipped to provide support for every student, and your local school is the best source of information about what kinds of support would be most appropriate to help your child to get the most out of their education.
What is an Access request?
If your child has moderate to high needs and requires specialist support, your child’s school may apply for specialist supports using an Access request.
This is a way for the school to access specific types of additional support for your child, such as extra funding to hire additional teachers, or a placement for your child in a support class.
An independent panel of experts will consider the request and give their decisions about it to your local school.
Most students with disability and learning and support needs will not need an Access request submitted for them because their local school is well equipped to meet their needs.
In the cases where one is required, your school manages the application process. They will talk to you and get your input about your child’s needs and the types of support that you would prefer.
Your child’s school will then submit the application to be assessed by a group of experts in your school’s local area. This group - referred to as a placement panel - will make a decision about the application.
No matter what the decision is, your child will continue to be offered support at their local school.
What is a placement panel?
A placement panel is a group made up of staff from Student Support Services and school based staff who meet at the local regional office to consider all the requests for support class placements for schools within that area.
What kind of supports might need an Access request?
The following forms of support could require an Access request:
- Integration funding support (IFS) - This provides additional funding to support students in mainstream classes in their local school, for employing additional teachers or school learning support officers to assist with your child’s personalised learning and support.
- A placement for your child in a support class in a mainstream school, or in a School for Specific Purposes (SSPs). Most support classes are in local, mainstream schools, although not all types of support classes are available in all areas.
It’s important that you are involved in this application process by talking to your child’s school about your child’s needs. You can involve a support person to help you when you are meeting with the school, or you can ask for the school to arrange for an interpreter for you.
When might your child’s school need to submit an Access request?
An Access request could be submitted before your child starts school or at any time during their schooling.
If your child is in Year 5, the school will need to submit an Access request for a placement in a support class in high school. However, this does not apply if your child attends a SSP or a Central School.