The Disability Standards for Education 2005 (the standards) were developed under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992, and came into effect in August 2005. The standards must be reviewed every five years, in consultation with the Attorney-General's Department.
2015 review of the standards
Urbis reviewed the standards in 2015 on behalf of the department. The review included broad stakeholder consultations with education authorities, anti-discrimination bodies, education sector representative groups, disability advocacy groups, parent groups, and individuals. The department also received written submissions.
Urbis found that good progress had been made since 2010 in raising awareness of the standards with educators. In its final report, Urbis made 14 recommendations to the Australian Government to improve awareness, interpretation, and compliance with the standards. The Australian Government's initial response outlines how the Government intends to address each recommendation.
Exemplars of practice
During the 2015 review, stakeholders indicated that greater awareness was needed of how to practically implement the standards, resulting in recommendation 3 of the review. In consultation with selected stakeholders, Urbis developed the Exemplars of Practice to demonstrate how the standards can be used to support better learning outcomes and educational experiences for students in early learning, schools, vocational education, and higher education settings.
Resources to support the implementation of the standards
The Guidance notes provide additional material to help education providers interpret and comply with the standards.
Fact sheets also help students, parents, and schools to understand the standards, and ensure that students with disability can access and participate in school education on the same basis as other students.
- Fact sheet 1: Disability Discrimination Act 1992
- Fact sheet 2: Disability Standards for Education 2005
- Fact sheet 3: Parental engagement
- Fact sheet 4: Effective consultation
- Fact sheet 5: Complaints processes
The department engaged the University of Canberra to develop the Disability Standards for Education: A practical guide for individuals, families and communities for parents/carers, students, and the community.