Additional Learning Needs

Our schools assist all students, including students with additional learning needs.

If required, your child may access
the services of:

speech pathologists
learning consultants: diversity, ASD/behaviour, vision impairment, hearing impairment, physical/chronic health impairment, new arrivals/refugees.

If the school believes your child would benefit from these services, the school will contact you and ask for your approval for the direct involvement of learning diversity staff with your child. You may contact your child’s school for more information.

Information regarding the relevant referral process for these services is available from your child’s school.

Specialised therapy in schools

Our schools work in collaboration with specialised organisations in developing learning programs for students with special needs and these are tailored to meet the requirements of the individual student.

All students who have a physical, chronic health impairment or multiple disabilities and require physiotherapy and/or occupational therapy as an integral component of their school program may be referred for specialised therapy. Programs by Yooralla and Scope Victoria are provided. You may contact your child’s school for more information.

Nationally Consistent Collection of Data on School Students with Disability (NCCD)

The federal and state governments provide funding to Victorian Catholic schools to assist with the ongoing costs of education. The Australian Education Act 2013 and subsequent amendments introduced the Nationally Consistent Collection of Data on School Students with Disability (NCCD). The NCCD count occurs as part of the school census in August of each year.

Many students who need help at school can be counted in the NCCD, including children with learning problems (e.g. specific learning disability or reading difficulty – sometimes called dyslexia), health problems (e.g. epilepsy or diabetes), physical disabilities (e.g. cerebral palsy), vision/hearing loss and social–emotional problems (e.g. selective mutism, autism spectrum disorder or anxiety). You may contact your child’s school for more information.

Transition certificate in work education

A transition certificate in work education (Certificate I in Transition Education) is offered at TAFE for students whose minimum age is 16. This program is for young people who have experienced mild intellectual learning and/or social difficulties.

It offers them the opportunity to participate in a range of vocational electives and activities, providing a broader base of living and employment skills. Programs can be tailored to meet the needs of individual students. You may contact your child’s school for more information.

Futures for Young Adults

Futures for Young Adults (FFYA) is a program that provides support to students with a disability to make the transition to post-school options.

Transition to Employment is an initiative within the FFYA program that aims to enhance opportunities for young people interested in pursuing employment. It is available to eligible students who have turned 18 when they complete their schooling and can be accessed up until they turn 21.

Senior Pathways & Transition Program

The Senior Pathways & Transition Program is available to selected students in Year 10 across schools of the Archdiocese of Melbourne. It aims to encourage students with learning difficulties and/or disabilities to remain in the mainstream school setting beyond the compulsory years, and to access a range of vocational and higher educational opportunities that allow flexibility, choice and interchange at the completion of compulsory schooling years.

For more information, call
Catholic Education Melbourne on
03 9267 0228 or email

Specialist settings

The Archdiocese of Melbourne operates specialist settings at:

MacKillop Specialist School in Whittington and Maidstone
St Mary’s College for the Deaf, with campuses in Wantirna South and South Morang (primary), Dandenong, Ringwood, Sunbury and South Morang (secondary)
St Joseph’s Flexible Learning Centre in North Melbourne
St Paul’s College in Kew.

The Sandhurst Diocese operates:

Doxa School in Bendigo
Notre Dame College, McAuley Champagnat Programme in Shepparton
Borinya Wangaratta Community Partnership in Wangaratta.
For more information contact:
Catholic Education Melbourne:
03 9267 0228
Catholic Education Office Sandhurst:
03 5443 2377

Gifted students

Catholic schools make provision for high-achieving and gifted students in a variety of ways. The Catholic Education Office in each diocese offers educational consultancy and access to resources to assist schools in identifying gifted students, assessing their specific needs, and making appropriate programming recommendations. You may contact your child’s school for more information.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students

Ongoing educational, pastoral and cultural support to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students are provided through school-based curriculum initiatives. Schools develop, implement and evaluate personalised learning plans for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students as required. Effective links are established with Aboriginal community organisations, education personnel, student support schemes and funding where available. You may contact your child’s school for more information.

An initiative of the Aboriginal Catholic Ministry, Melbourne, is the ‘Opening the Doors Foundation’. The Foundation provides assistance to parents of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children who attend our schools in Victoria. It assists parents to choose and successfully maintain a positive educational environment for their children.

For more information, see
or call 03 9443 9070.

English as an Additional Language or Dialect (EAL/D) / New arrivals/refugees program

Consultancy services and funding are available to schools to meet the needs of newly arrived students requiring support with learning English as an Additional Language or Dialect (EAL/D). You may contact your child’s school for more information.