Supported Students, Successful Students FAQs
Why is the Supported Students, Successful Students initiative being introduced?
The NSW Government is strongly committed to providing safe, supportive, quality learning environments for all students and teachers. Studies have shown students who are better supported in their wellbeing have higher academic achievement and better life outcomes in relation to health, employment, social inclusion and economic independence.
What funding is being provided for this initiative?
This $167 million investment over five years is made possible by the NSW Government's commitment to the Gonski school funding agreement.
What does this initiative aim to achieve?
It aims to proactively develop student character and wellbeing; help create safer school environments; counter inappropriate behaviours, such as bullying and cyber-bullying; and help schools to more effectively engage with vulnerable students.
Supported Students, Successful Students will better enable schools to offer support for students in need, develop character and improve behaviour through wellbeing services and a stronger student discipline code.
What is included in the initiative?
Services provided for school communities include:
- $80.7 million to increase the school counselling service by 236 full-time equivalent staff
- $51.5 million for wellbeing services that could be sourced from government or non-government agencies – funding equivalent to an additional 200 Student Support Officers
- $15 million to support schools to develop and implement a comprehensive and inclusive whole-school approach to positive behaviour for learning
- $8 million to support Aboriginal students and their families
- $4 million to support refugee students and their families
- $8 million to provide graduate scholarships to boost the recruitment of school counsellors and other wellbeing positions.
Why do we need to focus on student wellbeing and behaviour?
Children and young people today face different pressures than previous generations. They require different skills and understandings to grow and thrive in environments that are socially connected by continually changing digital technologies which cut across geographic and other boundaries. Changes to the way information is absorbed and distributed impact on social standards and personal relationships.
All community members, including educators, share responsibility to provide leadership for children and younger people and prepare them for opportunities and challenges. Studies have shown that students who are better supported in their wellbeing have higher academic achievement and better life outcomes in relation to health, employment, social inclusion and economic independence.
Will every school get additional resources?
Yes. Every school will receive a base school counsellor allocation set for three years, based on school size. Schools with greater needs will also receive an annual flexible resource for additional wellbeing services such as student support officers, psychologists and specialist teachers.
What support will be available for schools?
In 2015 all schools will engage in discussions with students, staff and their communities about student wellbeing in their school and local context.
Schools and their communities will have access to:
- a wellbeing self-assessment tool for schools
- easily accessible, clear information to develop wellbeing strategies
- a streamlined website with departmental policies, procedures, legislative requirements and resources
- state-wide system support to develop whole-school approaches to positive behaviour for learning.
How will the most vulnerable students in our schools benefit from Supported Students, Successful Students?
Funding of $8 million is included to address healing and wellbeing issues faced by Aboriginal students and their families in some of NSW's most remote and disadvantaged schools. $4 million in funding will support refugee students transitioning to mainstream schools.
Why do we need a new Behaviour Code for Students?
A new Behaviour Code for Students will address disruptive behaviours in the classroom, helping all students to participate in learning activities more effectively. With consistent expectations across all schools, students will know expectations about standards of behaviour.
How will the Behaviour Code for Students make a difference in schools?
The new Behaviour Code for Students explicitly sets expectations that empower principals to maintain high standards of behaviour in schools. The Code will also provide clear advice for teachers about their responsibilities and authority to deal with challenging behaviour from students.