Building teaching excellence through pre-service and in-service training is central to making schools more inclusive and improving outcomes for students with a disability.
As part of the Special Needs Plan for Victorian Schools, all teachers will be required to engage in relevant professional learning activities in preparation for renewal of registration with the Victorian Institute of Teaching in September 2016 and in each year after that. The next generation of teachers will also be prepared to teach in inclusive education settings by completing training on teaching students with disabilities as part of their tertiary studies.
These new requirements apply to all Victorian teachers in government, Catholic and independent schools and early childhood settings.
For more information, see Building teacher capability for inclusive education (docx - 107.66kb).
Access to expert support in the area of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is strengthened by advice and consultation services provided by Amaze (Autism Victoria), ASPECT, I CAN Network and university partnerships.
Schools and teachers also have access to targeted consultation and advice to support them to meet the needs of students on the autism spectrum. See available partnership projects at ASD partnerships.
The Department is committed to developing positive partnerships with key organisations with expertise and a shared commitment to supporting children and young people with disabilities that will enrich knowledge and practices within our schools and their communities.
The Department runs initiatives to strengthen the capacity of our workforce. These include:
Including children on the autism spectrum in the Early Years is a free online learning course that supports early childhood professionals to develop a greater understanding of how to include young children on the spectrum in their setting and respond to their learning and development needs
Inclusion Online provides online professional learning to enable staff in Victorian government schools to focus on the understanding, assessment and classroom support of students with disabilities and learning difficulties.
The Understanding Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) course is run over one school term (ten weeks), requiring approximately two hours online participation per week. This learning can take place at any time convenient to the participating staff member. Course participants are supported by an online tutor and study alongside a cohort of up to 11 colleagues.