Other learning support and opportunities

Our schools can provide additional support to Aboriginal students, students learning English as an additional language or dialect, and those with disabilities or additional learning and support needs. We also offer opportunities for high-potential and gifted students.

Students with disability and additional learning and support needs

NSW public schools provide a range of specialist services to support students with additional learning and support needs. This includes support for students’ diverse needs in learning or behaviour, students with disability, students with additional health and wellbeing needs.

Every mainstream NSW public school has a learning and support teacher who works in the school to support students with disability.

If your child has a disability or additional needs, start by talking to your school. The school will have a meeting with you to find out more and talk about how they can help.

A school can make reasonable adjustments for your child – for example, changes to lessons, or to the classroom, or even big changes like putting in ramps or doing building work. You know your child best, so it is important to have early conversations so that you and the school can work together to come up with a plan.

Your child might do well in a mainstream classroom with a bit of extra support, or the school might suggest applying for a placement in a support class. These are classes for children with much higher levels of need. They can be at a local public school, or at a school for specific purposes. The school will discuss the options with you and will help you with the application process. Find out more about starting school with additional needs.

Aboriginal students

In some communities, there are tailored transition programs working to enhance the educational outcomes for Aboriginal students. Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander parents and carers are encouraged to participate in the development of their child's Personalised Learning Pathway (PLP). Personalised Learning Pathways are an active and continuous process. They are developed in consultation and collaboration with the student, families and teachers, to identify, organise and apply personal approaches to learning and engagement for success. For more information about tailored transition programs and PLPs, contact your school.

Support for students who are learning English as an additional language or dialect

Schools provide support for students learning English as an additional language or dialect (EAL/D) to assist their full participation in schooling.

Contact your school to discuss how they meet the needs of EAL/D learners.

High potential and gifted students

High potential and gifted children are those whose potential is more advanced compared to their same-age peers in one or more domains: intellectual, creative, social-emotional or physical. Opportunities exist in all NSW public schools for high potential and gifted children. Contact your school to talk with the principal.

Inclusive education in schools

Inclusive education ensures all that students, regardless of differences, can fully participate in learning with their peers.

The NSW Department of Education values diverse school communities and is dedicated to creating an inclusive education system that includes every student, regardless of disability, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, nationality, language, gender, sexual orientation, or faith. This is done by making customised changes and using teaching methods that address the specific needs of each student

Our culture, policies, and everyday practices support the integration of inclusion throughout school life.

Find out more about starting school with additional needs.


  • DoE


  • Primary school

Business Unit:

  • Communication and Engagement
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