Frequently Asked Questions

The Student Wellbeing Innovation Fund is a new initiative of the NSW Department of Education

Student Wellbeing Innovation Fund

The Student Wellbeing Innovation Fund 2024 round will not be proceeding. The department has released its Our Plan for Public Education and will continue to prioritise and invest in supporting the mental health and wellbeing of students including the expansion of the Student Wellbeing external programs catalogue and School Counselling Service.

The funding selection was a competitive process seeking to support activities specifically targeting high-need and/or under-serviced areas of student need. Assessment of all submissions was undertaken by between 3 to 6 individuals unfamiliar with the applicants and unaware of existing relationships – assessing the submissions on their alignment to the objectives and quality of the proposed outcomes.

Selection of the activities receiving a grant were based on the outcomes for each program, and grants awarded to existing recipients is specifically for unique and/or specific variation of projects.

The activities receiving a grant through the Fund cover all, if not most, of the key priority areas either as a main or secondary focus.

Student Wellbeing Innovation Fund framework

The NSW Department of Education has established the $3.2 million Student Wellbeing Innovation Fund to encourage bold and innovative programs and initiatives to improve student’s mental health and wellbeing in all schools across New South Wales.

The Fund aims to increase the variety and availability of quality wellbeing programs proven to support students from their early years through to their entry into adulthood.

Programs or initiatives that receive a grant through the Student Wellbeing Innovation Fund will need to address one or more of the five priority student cohorts in New South Wales:

  • Primary school-aged students
  • Students transitioning to school and into high school
  • Students living in regional and remote areas
  • Students from target cohorts including First Nations and culturally and linguistically diverse, students with additional needs and/or disability, students from a migrant or refugee background, and female students
  • Cyber health.

Before submitting a grant application, please read the Program Guidelines.

The Student Wellbeing Innovation Fund opened on Monday 20 February 2023 and closed at midnight on Sunday 2 April 2023.

Applicants applied for grants of up to $200,000 for each unique program or initiative.

Over 330 applications were received and assessed. An overview of the projects receiving a grant are available on our website

Definitions of key terms

The definition of these terms as they relate to this Fund:

  • A program is a set of proven activities or instructions that aims to increase or uplift student wellbeing targeting at least one identified priority area and which can be used in many schools.
  • An initiative is a new idea, concept or activity that aims to increase or uplift student wellbeing, targeting at least one identified priority area (see Program Guidelines). It  may expand on an existing  program in a way not previously explored or be a totally new concept.

See the Program Guidelines for the key priority areas.

If applying for more than one grant funding, you need to ensure that each program or initiative you submit is significantly different from each other, and not just a variation of the same core concept.

The definition of these terms as they relate to this Fund:

  • A seed grant is a one-off allocation of funding to be used to support ‘incubator’ student wellbeing programs and/or initiatives and may be used to research, create, develop and test new approaches to supporting and addressing student wellbeing issues.
  • A capacity building grant is to support providers (applicants) of existing wellbeing programs or initiatives to strengthen these by expanding the reach, scaling or delivering these wellbeing programs or initiatives in new locations or to new priority areas.

See the Program Guidelines for key priority areas.

Cyber health refers to maintaining positive health and wellbeing as an internet user, being aware of cyber risks including, cyber bulling, and being aware of how to be respectful to oneself and others as a digital user. The focus of cyber health is about helping students to become responsible digital learners.

Resources and references

The policy library contains all current operational policies in the NSW Department of Education.

The department manages a master data set of all schools on the website.

The Student Wellbeing Innovation Fund provides seed and capacity building funding to develop new innovative programs and initiatives or expand existing programs and initiatives to meet areas of high and/or emerging needs in supporting the wellbeing of students.

The Student Wellbeing external programs catalogue includes existing programs that have already been quality assessed by the Department. The catalogue is a resource for NSW public schools. Program information includes pricing structures and delivery models shared with schools as part of a commercial-in-confidence arrangement.


  • Student management and wellbeing

Business Unit:

  • Teaching, Learning and Student Wellbeing
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