Consultation period on revised Inclusion Support Program (ISP) Guidelines now closed

For: 

The Inclusion Support Program (ISP) has been operating since July 2016 and the ISP Guidelines are being reviewed to reflect feedback on the first three years of operation and the introduction of the Child Care Package in July 2018.

The ISP Guidelines provide information for eligible early childhood education and care (ECEC) services about the purpose and objectives of the ISP and how the program will operate, including eligibility, application and assessment processes.

Consultation Process 

The draft revised ISP Guidelines are based on feedback from services, the Early Childhood Education and Care Reference Group, Inclusion Agencies and other stakeholders.

The public consultation period was from 16 October 2019 until 11 November 2019. The department thanks stakeholders for their feedback. 

Proposed changes

A summary of the proposed changes and the consulation draft of the updated ISP Guidelines remain available for interested stakeholders.

The proposed changes include:

  • Broadening eligibility for additional educator funding to cover children with additional needs who may not have a diagnosed disability, such as those with serious medical or health conditions (including mental health), learning, language and speech delays, children presenting with challenging behaviours and/or trauma-related behaviours.
  • Eligibility is also being expanded to now include children with additional needs participating in a preschool program in a Centre-Based Day Care service, where the child attracts Child Care Subsidy.
  • Increased flexibility for applications for the Innovative Solutions Support Stream.

Next Steps

The department will consider stakeholder feedback to ensure that the proposed changes will improve the program outcomes, being to support the participation of children with additional needs in early childhood education and care, and to support the participation of parents in the economy.

The department plans to publish the revised ISP Guidelines in January 2020.

If you have any questions please contact the department at InclusionSupportProgram@education.gov.au.