Professional learning to support inclusive education

Workforce capability for inclusion is one of the principles of inclusive education.

This means that teachers, school staff, and school leaders are supported to strengthen inclusive practice and personalised planning to meet individual student needs. Teachers are supported to provide adjustments and differentiate their teaching for the diversity of students in their class.

Support includes evidence-based resources, professional learning, professional learning communities, mentoring and supervision. The following professional learning is available to help school staff develop and deliver quality learning experiences for all students, including students with disability.


The inclusive education champions network brings together staff who champion and support the strengthening of inclusive practices at the local level in NSW public schools.

The network shares experiences and expertise including examples of inclusive practice. It is also a forum for peer support and discussion of inclusive education challenges.

The champions

There is no formal requirement to be a champion. Champions must be:

  1. School based staff or staff who support schools
  2. Passionate and committed to strengthening inclusive practice in all NSW public schools
  3. Fully committed to implementing the department's Inclusive Education Statement for students with disability and future related policies.

The goal is a network of champions that cover all regions, networks and school types across the state. School staff (teaching and non-teaching staff) and leaders can be involved including permanent, temporary and casual staff.

If you're interested in being part of the network, and if you have any questions please email the Inclusive Education team.

The Inclusive education – disability statewide staffroom is a place for all staff across our department who are passionate about inclusive education for students with disability, to connect, collaborate, share their expertise and get the latest information and resources related to inclusive education for students with disability.

Members are encouraged to engage in professional dialogue, ask questions, and share ideas and resources.

Subject matter experts and advisors from various policy areas relating to inclusive education for students with disability support and moderate the Staffroom through a tagging system.

Together we are building a supportive, collaborative community of educational practitioners.

The Inclusive Practice in Education Scholarship is supporting our teachers to undertake further education that will assist them in embedding inclusive practice in their classrooms and schools in line with the Department's Disability Strategy. Eligible permanent, temporary and casual teachers and school leaders working in any NSW public school setting are encouraged to apply. Click here for more information and to receive updates.

From 2020, staff can apply to study an expanded range of qualifications including:

  • a masters in inclusive/special education
  • a masters with specialisation in the area of deaf and hard of hearing or blind and low vision
  • a graduate diploma in inclusive/special education

The Disability Strategy recognises that an increasing number of students with disability are enrolling in NSW public schools, and there is currently a mix of confidence, skills and knowledge in delivering the best education to students with disability.

The Inclusive Practice in Education scholarship, launched in 2020, aims to increase the number of people studying special/inclusive education by 50% by 2022.

This is an incredible professional development opportunity for eligible permanent teachers who will be able to study whilst remaining in their current position.

Review the frequently asked questions for more information on eligibility, scholarship payments and your appointment as a teacher.

Contact our Employment Programs team via or phone 1300 300 634.

To be notified when new information becomes available subscribe here.

This NESA accredited practical course for school staff builds an understanding of the principles of inclusive education with the view to integrate these principles into school Strategic Improvement Plans (SIPs).

This is achieved through blended learning with opportunities for individual learning and reflection, a facilitated discussion on a hypothetical scenario, and then an opportunity for schools to review key programs/processes from their SIP through an inclusive lens.

For more information, email

To access the course click here.

Under the Disability Standards for Education 2005 (DSE2005) all principals and teachers have legal obligations to ensure that every student is able to participate in the curriculum on the same basis as their peers through rigorous, meaningful and dignified learning. The Disability Standards are Australian law under the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) 1992.

A package of e-learning lessons on the DDA, with a focus on the DSE2005, has been developed to provide professional learning for school staff.

The Disability Standards for Education Leaders course is mandatory for educational leaders (principals, DELs and school executive staff) and is designed to help them to uphold their legal obligations.

The course is highly recommended for all teaching staff in NSW public schools, and a valuable resource for corporate employees.

There are seven courses available on the Disability Standards for Education training;

  1. Disability Standards for Education leaders
  2. Disability Standards for senior secondary
  3. Disability Standards for Education for junior secondary
  4. Disability Standards for primary schools
  5. Disability Standards for early childhood (prior to school)
  6. Disability Standards for early childhood (school)
  7. Disability Standards for education assistants

This training is highly relevant to the Nationally Consistent Collection of Data - School Students with Disability (NCCD). The Disability Standards for Education underpin this important work for schools. All schools are required to participate in the national data collection annually from 2015. These e-learning lessons support schools' ability to understand their obligations as they prepare their data for the national collection. Decisions for the collection of data are based on evidence of adjustments for the student whose learning is impacted by disability, after consultation with the student, their parents and carers.

This online, self-paced learning supports school staff to:

  1. Identify the diversity of learners, their strengths and learning needs and how to cater for these when planning, programming, teaching and assessing.
  2. Identify the diversity of Aboriginal learners, their learning needs and how to cater for these learners using evidence-based strategies to plan, program, teach and assess.
  3. Identify the diversity of English as an additional language or dialect (EAL/D) learners, their strengths and learning needs and how to cater for these learners using evidence-based strategies to plan, program, teach and assess.
  4. Identify the diversity of high potential and gifted (HPG) learners, their strengths and learning needs and how to cater for these learners using evidence-based strategies to plan, program, teach and assess.
  5. Understand responsibilities to support learners with disability, identify their strengths and learning needs and how to cater for these learners using evidence-based strategies to plan, program, teach and assess.

Access the course here.

A suite of supported online courses is available to support classroom teachers and support staff from the departments' primary schools, high schools, and Schools for Specific Purposes (SSPs). Each of the courses is registered with the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA). The courses address a range of diverse disabilities and additional learning and support needs. Department staff can undertake the courses with a trained tutor, studying in a learning group and by individual online study

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