Students with learning support needs

Schools are required to be inclusive under the Education and Training Act 2020 and this is reinforced by the New Zealand Disability Strategy.

View how this is applied in Education and disability legislation guiding our approach to learning support.

Below are the types of services and aid available for children, students, teachers and schools as part of Learning Support:

Support available for children

Learning support is available for children and young people:

Specialist services

There are specialist services that support:

  • Students with a physical disability. The Physical Disability Service works with teachers and schools to help them adapt the environment around the student to meet students’ needs.
  • Positive behaviour in situations of clear need. The PB4L – Positive Behaviour for Learning helps people throughout our schools and early childhood centres with programmes for individuals, groups, schools, teachers, parents and whānau in more settled environments.
  • Managing difficult behaviour. The Behaviour services to help schools and students deal with its effect on schools, families and whānau, and communities, and
  • A comprehensive, holistic, youth and family/whānau driven way of responding. The Te Kahu Tōī, Intensive Wraparound Service (IWS) is for when children or youth experience significant challenges in their lives.

Teacher aid funding for schools

Information is provided here for schools about Teacher aide resource funding including funding through:

Schools can request an informal or a formal review of the teacher aide resource allocated to a student or child in the Ongoing Resourcing Scheme (ORS) or the School High Health Needs Fund (SHHNF) – Request a review of the teacher aide resource for students in ORS or SHHNF.

Resource/specialist teachers

Resource/specialist teachers provide services to schools and students with learning support needs. These services include:

Specialist schools

There are specialist schools for students who have high needs and these can be either:

  • Day specialist schools for students with high needs (offering specialist teaching).
  • Residential specialist schools (RSS) (for students with educational needs relating to: vision, hearing, and socialisation, behaviour, and learning)
  • Regional health schools, which supports children who can’t attend school because they are unwell.

See more on Specialist schools.

To enrol students at these schools, a Specialist Education Agreement (previously known as Section 9 agreement) is required – Entering into a Specialist Education Agreement.

Support for schools

These are learning support resources to help schools’ work with students and parents.

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