Support for Parents

Support for Parents

The Down Syndrome Association of Queensland provides support to parents and schools to ensure that students with Down syndrome are maximising their educational outcomes. This support is provided by the Education Consultant.

The overriding vision of the Education Consultant is to promote improved educational outcomes for all students with Down syndrome. This is achieved through an unwavering belief and commitment to the capacity of students with Down syndrome to achieve educationally. This is coupled with a focus on education in all areas including physical, emotional, intellectual and social learning. The Education Consultant oversees programs and services designed to maximise the developmental achievements of students with Down syndrome both in their educational environment and in the wider community. Services provided by the Education Consultant include the annual education conferences in both rural and urban Queensland, the development of resources, research based trials, professional development workshops, in-school support and general phone and email support.

DSAQ supports the right of parents to enrol their son or daughter at the school of their choice. All Queensland schools are required to adhere to the Disability Discrimination Act (1992) and the Disability Standards for Education (2005). Links to these documents can be found in the useful links section below. Schools are therefore required to make reasonable adjustments to ensure students with disability are able to participate in education on the same basis as students without disability. 

In Queensland, there are three options for schooling:

  • Government State schools (including special schools)
  • Independent Schools
  • Catholic Schools

For more information about each of these and the support they can provide to students with Down syndrome, see the useful links section below.

Selecting a School

Selecting a school for your child can be an overwhelming task. In Queensland there are approximately 1250 state schools and over 485 independent and Catholic schools.

The Department of Education and Training has an online directory which lists all state and non-state schools in Queensland and provides links to school websites. It's a useful starting point to help identify the schools in your area. The directory provides contact details for all state, independent and catholic schools, including email and website addresses. The link to this directory can be found in the useful links section below.

Eligible children and young people are entitled to enrol at their closest appropriate state school. When choosing a school, consider your child's particular needs along with the support available at the school. It may be useful to write a list of questions about schooling to help guide your discussions with school staff, other parents and community agencies.

Support provided to Students with Down syndrome

The amount and type of support provided to a student with Down syndrome will vary between schools. The best option is to speak with a member of the school administration staff about the support they can provide. The useful links section below contains websites and documents from the State, Independent and Catholic schools systems detailing the support they provide to students with Down syndrome. 

Support provided to Parents

The Education Consultant is available to support parents of children with Down syndrome through their schooling. Services provided by the Education Consultant to support parents include:

  • General phone and email support from the Education Consultant around all issues relating to the education of a student with Down syndrome
  • Annual 2-day education conference in Brisbane which brings together experts in the education of children with Down syndrome
  • Education workshops and one-day conferences throughout Queensland 
  • The development of resources to support the education of students with Down syndrome

Useful Downloads and Links

Further Information and Support

For further information and support please contact the team at DSAQ on (07) 3356 6655 or at office@dsaq.org.au

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