Children with Additional Needs Training

Learning modules to help early childhood professionals develop their practice. Includes autism, disability and early childhood intervention online courses.

Continuity of early learning - addressing disadvantage

Continuity of early learning - addressing vulnerability or disadvantage is a new professional development course being offered through Bastow for early childhood and school professionals in 2018.

About the course

The fully subsidised course focuses on strengthening the partnerships that matter most for children to achieve successful transition to school – partnerships between early childhood, primary school and parents.

Course outcomes

With an emphasis on supporting children and families experiencing vulnerability and/or disadvantage, the course will explore:

  • the evidence-based practices that work
  • how your team can implement these practices across and within services/schools
  • how individuals in your team can maximise their work together to achieve the very best possible outcomes for these children and families.


For further information and to apply, see: Continuity of Early Learning – Addressing Vulnerability or Disadvantage​

Autism Spectrum Disorder

The learning modules will help you develop a greater understanding of young children on the autism spectrum in their setting and to plan inclusive programs that support their learning and development.

Access the course

To access the online course, see: Including children on the autism spectrum in the early years

About the course

Aims of the modules

The modules bring together introductory information about Autism Spectrum Disorder, policy and framework guidance plus programming approaches to support responsiveness to the individual needs of children on the autism spectrum.

Who the course is for

The course is relevant for both educators who are currently working with children on the autism spectrum and those who wishing to develop their knowledge and skills in this area.

The modules also provide access to a range of downloadable tools that are designed to support planning for quality, inclusive Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) programs.

Course outcomes

Completion of this course will contribute towards Victorian Teaching Institute (VIT) registration requirements.

Module content information

Module 1 - An introduction to young children on the autism spectrum

This module is designed to build understanding of young children on the autism spectrum. It covers:

  • what is Autism Spectrum Disorder?
  • how educators learn from observing the child
  • the importance of working in partnership with families
  • collaborating with early childhood professionals and support services.

Module 2 - Practice to support planning for the learning and development of a child on the autism spectrum

This module looks at the ways in which legislation and frameworks support us to plan and provide a program that supports the inclusion of children on the autism spectrum in learning and development opportunities offered in early childhood education and care environments.

This module has a focus on the 8 practice principles, which are clearly linked with inclusive programing and support for children on the autism spectrum:

  • family-centred practice
  • partnerships with professionals
  • high expectations for every child
  • equity and diversity
  • respectful relationships and responsive engagement
  • integrated teaching and learning approaches
  • assessment for learning and development
  • reflective practice.

Module 3 - Developing a responsive program

  • framework of adapting the program to support the meaningful participation and ongoing learning and development of children on the autism spectrum
  • programming with an aim to foster independence for children on the autism spectrum
  • a team approach to inclusion
  • how to support ongoing learning by using the child's strengths and interests as a starting point.

Early Abilities Based Learning and Education Support (ABLES)

Early ABLES is a new online assessment tool to help educators create and provide a more tailored learning experience for children aged two to five years with disabilities or developmental delay.

Access the course

To access the online course, see: Professional learning portal: ABLES

Use enrolment key: Early_ABLES33.

Use the Early ABLES assessment tool

The following tool will help you as you complete the online course: Early ABLES assessment tool

About the course

Professional learning accreditation

The Early ABLES online professional learning contributes up to five hours to the Victorian Institute of Teaching's annual professional learning requirements of 20 hours.

Who the course is for

This tool is designed for use by educators working with children aged two to five years with disabilities or developmental delay and their families. Use of this tool will also strengthen connections between services.

It can also be used to support the transition to school for children with disabilities or developmental delays.

Course outcomes

For children with a disability or developmental delay, the tool will help educators to:

  • assess the child's progress in learning
  • develop appropriate learning goals in collaboration with families and other professionals involved in the education and care of the child
  • develop and further refine  personalised learning plans with proven teaching and learning strategies
  • monitor progress along a likely progression of learning
  • better support the development of the individual child's learning program through using the Early Years Planning Cycle
  • improve transition processes through consistent information sharing across services and schools.

Trouble accessing learning module

The following video provides step by step instructions to accessing the online learning modules:


Read video transcript (docx - 38.72kb)

The Victorian Department of Education and Training is the development sponsor and owner of all rights in the ABLES Tools. The ABLES Tools were derived from the Students with Additional Needs (SWANs) assessment and reporting materials which are owned by the University of Melbourne. The SWANs materials were developed with the support of the Australian Research Council as part of a Linkage partnership with the Centre for Advanced Assessment and Therapy Services and the University's foundation research partner, the Victorian Department of Education and Training.

Early childhood intervention training

We are working in partnership with Early Childhood Intervention Australia (ECIA) to provide professional development opportunities specifically for ECIS professionals.

There are a number of opportunities in Victoria for professional development across all areas of early childhood intervention; both general and discipline-specific.

For further information, see: ECIA Events and Professional Development Calendar Of Events