$45 million to increase support for challenged students
16 programs for students with autism spectrum disorder
Upgrades to 22 education support schools and centres
Expert team to assess disability funding
Students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) who have very complex support needs can enrol in schools with new specialist learning programs starting from 2017.
Education Minister Peter Collier said 16 schools would be selected to run the $32 million specialist ASD programs by 2020.
"While schools do amazing work, there are some children with ASD who, because of their complex needs and challenging behaviours, require more help to achieve their best," Mr Collier said.
"Students will be able to enrol in the schools running these programs, no matter where they live, and will be taught in small groups by specialist teachers for some of the time and in mainstream classes with additional support for the rest of the time."
The Minister also announced other initiatives to further support students.
"We are investing $8 million to improve facilities at 22 education support schools and centres for students with disability," he said.
Schools will receive an extra $5 million to better support students with learning difficulties such as dyslexia and speech disorders.
"A new dedicated team of expert psychologists will also be set up to undertake the complex assessment of students with disability, ensuring funding and services for these students are provided more quickly to schools," Mr Collier said.
More than 4,000 students with ASD are enrolled in local public schools
The new ASD programs will focus on students' academic engagement, organisation skills, social thinking, peer relationships and self-regulation
Works to be completed this year in education support schools and centres include playgrounds, covered walkways and toilet upgrades
Minister's office - 6552 6300