Funding and planning for schools for specific purposes

The schools for specific purposes (SSP) supplementary funding supports student outcomes by enabling principals to allocate additional resourcing to best suit the needs of their individual students and school.

Schools for specific purposes (SSP) supplementary funding

The SPP supplementary funding is a flexible funding allocation to support additional staff resourcing needs within SSPs. The funding allocation may only be used on staffing.

The purpose of the SSP supplementary funding is to provide and evaluate interim additional resourcing to alleviate staffing pressures in SSPs and inform future entitlement solutions.

The funding may be used to:

  • engage an additional executive position and/or fund the staffing component of an existing initiative that had previously been funded from an alternate source
  • increase the number of school administrative and support staff such as school learning and support officers to support student engagement in learning
  • engage dedicated specialists to address areas of specific student/ school need under existing public service classifications, for example, occupational therapists, physiotherapists and speech pathologists
  • provide release time to enable Aboriginal Education Officers’ (AEOs) and other staff members to for targeted student support across schools in youth justice centres and other SSPs where there is an identified need.

More information can be found at SSP supplementary funding (staff only).


Reflective questions

  • What curriculum options are provided for our secondary age students who need adjustments to meet syllabus outcomes?
  • What processes and evidence collection will we put in place to track that funding is being used effectively?
  • How is our school funding allocated to school initiatives, staffing and/or professional learning identified in the Strategic Improvement Plan (SIP)?
  • How will we know this funding, these initiatives and staff professional learning are having the impact we want?
  • Does our Strategic Improvement Plan (SIP) include strategies to evaluate the impact of this funding, these initiatives and staff professional learning?


Planning for students

See the sample situational analysis available for SSPs.

See sample for 'School for specfic purpose 1' (SSP 1):

Situational analysis sample - SSP 1

'After a detailed situational analysis, this school concluded that a more streamlined approach to data-informed practice was required in order to improve personalised learning and that professional development was required to achieve this.

Greater collaboration through shared practice would assist in improving practice across the school.

Community engagement was considered essential to building an educational culture focussed on personalised student learning.'

Strategic direction 1: Student growth and attainment

Annotation: 'Strategic direction 1 is set as ‘Student growth and attainment’ across all schools regardless of school size or type.'

  • All students achieve the expected improvement outcome as outlined in their Personalised Learning and Support Plans (PLSPs) determined by students with additional needs (SWANS) and plotted against the goal attainment scales (GAS) in:
    • literacy
    • communication
    • numeracy.
  • All targeted students indicate improvement in independence, self-direction and self-regulation through Treatment and Education of Autistic and Related Communication Handicapped Children (TEACCH) data collection (Incident Reports, Teacher observations) as measured through their individual behavioural data analysis.

Annotation: 'For an SSP, improvement measures are highly context-driven. Targets and improvement measures are carefully constructed to focus on measures based on an aggregate of individual student performance and growth, and system-negotiated targets may not be appropriate for the context.'

Annotation: 'After their situational analysis, this school has determined that building staff capabilities is a priority and prerequisite to developing student-centred learning through the TEACCH approach. One broad initiative builds staff capabilities and practice, and another focuses on implementation of focused learning goals for students. Through the lens of What works best: 2020 update (CESE), the themes ‘Use of data to inform practice’ and ‘Assessment’, results in ‘Explicit teaching’.'

  • Data skills and use.
  • Student centred learning goals.

Annotation: 'Observable practices demonstrating success have been listed in the Strategic Improvement Plan (SIP). When evaluating success, the school will consider how embedded and widespread these practices have become.'

  • Planning for learning is informed by sound holistic data about each student’s learning and wellbeing needs in consultation with key stakeholders. PLSPs are developed with explicit literacy, numeracy and communication goals with the ‘progress to the next step’ understood by all those involved. Staff use data to inform goal setting around independence, self-direction and self-regulation.

Annotation: 'This school is using a qualitative and quantitative data to measure student learning and improved teaching practices.'

Success in ensuring all students are engaged and challenged to learn and improve will be determined by:

  • Teacher analysis of data and feedback on the use of the TEACCH approach indicates student improvement in independence, self-direction, self-regulation as indicated in their Personalised Learning and Support Plans.
  • Whole school assessment data using SWANs as plotted against the GAS to analyse student progress and trends. The analysis of this data will be used to determine the future of this project.

Annotation: 'Planned activities have been detailed over the course of the year, and the school can update these in response to feedback, challenges and successes. Each activity has corresponding resources and evaluation mapped. Key sources of evidence can be uploaded when evaluating the activity, resulting in a more streamlined external validation process. The example activity starts the process of building staff capabilities:'

  • Deliver professional learning on Sample School’s SWANS assessment procedure.

Annotation: 'Resources have been mapped against every activity in the sample Strategic Improvement Plan (SIP). All needs-based funding sources must be mapped to activities in the Strategic Improvement Plan (SIP), demonstrating that resources allocated in that year are used to provide improved learning and wellbeing outcomes for targeted students or student equity groups. In the sample, initiative funding for professional learning has been mapped.'

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