The Navigator program supports young people aged 12-17 years who are not connected to schools at all or those at risk of disengaging.
Navigator provides intensive case management and assertive outreach support to disengaged learners. The program actively works with these young people and their support networks to return them to education. Navigator is delivered by community agencies that work closely with local schools and Area teams to support a young person to re-engage back into education.
Navigator service providers are responsible for improving outcomes for young people, linking them to support services and interventions, and working with schools to support re-engagement planning.
The program was initially launched as a pilot in eight Areas across the State. Due to a successful pilot program, the Victorian Government has committed $44 million to continue Navigator in the existing areas and expand the program statewide over the next three years. The timing of this rollout will be determined in the coming months and further details will be available soon.
The 2018-19 Budget included $44 million to expand the successful Navigator pilot program to communities across the state to help keep more young Victorians engaged in education and attending school every day. This reflects Government’s commitment to breaking the link between disadvantage and better life opportunities and supports its target to halve the proportion of students leaving school between years 9 to 12 over the next 10 years.
Previously, $16.9 million has been invested in the Navigator program up to the end of 2018.
How Navigator fits with other programs
There is no Victorian or Commonwealth funding that delivers direct support to young people who are disengaged and not enrolled at school to support re-engagement. The Navigator service is filling this gap.
There are two existing complementary services funded by the Victorian Government:
- $8 million is provided per year for school focused youth services, who work within schools to support young people at risk of disengaging.
- $32 million is being provided over four years to Local Learning and Employment Networks to continue supporting young people at risk of disengaging with education, training and employment opportunities.
Neither of these services provide direct support to disengaged young people, which is where Navigator will come in.
What it means for schools and young people
Eligible young people will be referred to their local Navigator service by schools, parents, community members, other community service organisations and department staff.
Navigator will support the most disengaged young people in the state to get back on the education path and achieve their potential.
Passionate staff keeping teenagers in school