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Tuesday, 23 August 1983
Page: 96

Question No. 171

Mr Blanchard asked the Minister representing the Minister for Education and Youth Affairs, upon notice, on 19 May 1983:

Does the Government intend to give assistance and encouragement to parents attempting to provide education in a normal school for their disabled children; if so, in what areas will this assistance be given.

Mr Dawkins —The Minister for Education and Youth Affairs has provided the following answer to the honourable member's question:

The Commonwealth makes funds available to support the integration of disabled children in government and non-government regular schools and pre-schools in all States and Territories. The program administered by the Commonwealth Schools Commission, began in 1981. In 1983 eligibility for this support has been extended to include handicapped children below school age. Grants are paid to schools, education systems or other approved authorities. They are not paid directly to parents.

The priorities of the program are:

(1) to facilitate the movement of handicapped children from special to regular schools;

(2) to fund activities to assist in the education of handicapped children already fully or partially integrated into regular schools;

(3) to assist enrolment into regular primary schools of handicapped children who are beginning their formal schooling;

(4) to facilitate the enrolment into regular pre-schools of handicapped children below school age;

(5) to provide services to enable isolated handicapped children to attend neighbourhood schools.

Examples of provisions and services to which funds might be applied are:

training for teachers and other members of the school community;


the development of curriculum and other materials;

speech therapy; special remedial programs; physical education; excursions;

salaries of teachers (including visiting teachers), aides, therapists and other paramedical staff;


minor building and equipment projects;

attendance of children at assessment centres;

investigation of support services; and

provision of advisory services to school principals and teachers.


For integration programs in government schools and pre-schools funds are advanced to State Education Departments which determine their own expenditure priorities.

For integration programs in non-government schools and pre-schools applications are considered by State Planning and Finance Committees recommend grants to the Commission for approval.

Funds available for 1983.


Non- State/Territory

Government Government

$ $ New South Wales 375,000 107,000 Victoria 282,000 102,000 Queensland 166, 000 46,000 South Australia 103,000 19,000 Western Australia 97,000 22,000 Tasmania 35,000 7,000 Northern Territory 10,000 1,000 Australian Capital Territory 15,000 7,000

Total 1,083,000 311,000

The allocations shown in the above table are minimum amounts required by the legislation to be applied from the total amount of recurrent funding available for special education in schools. Additional amounts of special education recurrent funds may be applied to integration according to priorities determined by State Education Departments or recommended by State Planning and Finance Committees.