Refugee student support

Many students from refugee backgrounds need support in learning English as an additional language to access the curriculum. They may also have emotional, welfare and other educational support needs as a result of their experiences and sometimes disrupted or limited prior schooling. Like all students, refugee students need a safe and welcoming school environment.

School-aged refugee students, in particular high school students, generally require intensive and coordinated support. This funding supports refugee students who have been enrolled in an Australian school for less than three years. Funds may be used to provide:

  • a safe, welcoming school environment and orientation to school
  • uniforms and essential school equipment, camps and excursions
  • bilingual learning support
  • counsellor support
  • assistance to teachers to differentiate teaching and learning
  • additional English language learning and literacy support
  • tutorial support to assist refugee students with homework and assessment tasks
  • support to assist refugee students to participate actively in the school community
  • mentoring to support refugee students in their transition to work or further education.

For more information go to the multicultural education website.

Supporting refugee students

Schools receive resources to provide English as an additional language support for refugee students through the New Arrivals Program or the equity loading for English language proficiency.

Additional resources are provided to support refugee students through the targeted (individual student) funding component of the Resource Allocation Model. Schools will receive a per capita amount for each refugee student enrolled in an Australian school for less than three years. Data collected in the English as an additional language or dialect Annual Survey is used to allocate these funds.

Effective support for refugee students requires a coordinated whole school approach. Many schools have developed programs and strategies to support refugee students. These include:

  • orientation and transition support for newly arrived refugee students in high schools
  • intensive English programs for refugee students in primary schools
  • welfare and settlement support
  • bilingual learning support
  • counselling support
  • homework and tutorial assistance
  • mentoring and peer support.

All schools have a Strategic Improvement Plan in which they must show the school community how they propose to use the refugee student support funds. Accountability for the effective use of the funds to improve student outcomes occurs through the Annual Report.

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