Equity in School – Students with Disability

Nationally Consistent Collection of Data on School Students with Disability (NCCD) is an annual collection of data that counts the number of school students receiving adjustments due to disability in the school’s care, and the level of change they are obtaining to access education on the same basis as other students.

This is a requirement of all schools throughout Australia – to collect this data and provide the information ultimately to the Australian Government Department of Education, Skills and Employment.

Our School Consultancy Team (SCT), as receiving a reasonable adjustment, to address a disability under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992, identifies each of the included students.

Why is this data being collected?

The national data collection ensures that information about students with a disability is transparent, consistent and reliable at a national level. This will enable funding to be better targeted to student need.

What information will be collected?

  • the student’s year of schooling
  • the student’s level of adjustment
  • the student’s broad type of disability

If a student has multiple disabilities, the School Team, using their professional judgement, selects the general category of disability that has the most significant impact on their access to education and for which adjustments are being provided.

How will this data be used?

In addition to informing funding, the data will:

  • inform work at a school.
  • focus attention on the individual adjustments required to support students with disability to participate in learning on the same basis as other students.
  • facilitate a more collaborative and coordinated approach to supporting students who are receiving adjustments.
  • strengthen communication between schools, parents/carers and the broader community about the needs of students who are receiving adjustments because of disability.

Who is included in the National Data Collection?

The definition of disability for the national data collection is based on the broad definition under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992. For the national data collection, students with learning difficulties (such as dyslexia or auditory processing disorder) or chronic health conditions (like epilepsy or diabetes) that require monitoring and the provision of adjustments by the school may be included.

If your child has a disability, the school will provide information about them for the NCCD, including:

  • your child’s year of schooling
  • the category of disability that best describes your child’s difficulties (one of four categories is chosen by the school team to reflect your child’s greatest area of need: physical, cognitive, sensory or social/emotional)
  • the level of adjustment your child receives at school (one of four levels is chosen by the school team to reflect the type of support your child requires: quality differentiated teaching practice, supplementary adjustment, substantial adjustment, or extensive adjustment).

Who collects information for the National Data Collection?

The SCT and teachers will identify the number of students receiving an adjustment based on:

  • consultation with parents and carers in the course of determining and providing adjustments
  • the school team’s observations and professional judgements
  • any medical or other professional diagnoses
  • other relevant information.

School principals are responsible for ensuring the information identified about each student is accurate.

The information collected by schools for the NCCD will ultimately be provided to the Australian Government Department of Education. In some cases, this will involve the School passing the information directly to the Department. In other cases, the School will provide it to its state or territory Government Agency (or other relevant body) in the first instance, and that Agency will then provide the information to the Department.

What are the benefits of the National Data Collection for my child?

This information will help our teachers better support students with a disability to take part in School on the same basis as other students.

What are schools required to do for students with a disability?

All students are entitled to a quality learning experience at school. Schools are required to make reasonable adjustments, where needed, to assist students with disability in accessing and participating in education free from discrimination and on the same basis as other students. These responsibilities are outlined in the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 and the Disability Standards for Education 2005 (the Standards). The Standards require educators, students, parents and others (eg allied health professionals) to work together to ensure students with disability can participate in education.

What is a reasonable adjustment?

A reasonable adjustment is a measure or action taken to help a student with disability access and participate in education on the same basis as other students. Adjustments can be made across the whole school setting (eg ramps into school buildings), in the classroom (such as adapting teaching methods) and at an individual student level (eg extra tuition for a student with learning difficulties). Reasonable adjustments reflect the individually assessed needs of the student and are provided in consultation with the student and their parents and carers. For the Disability Standards for Education 2005, an adjustment is reasonable about a student with a disability if it balances the interests of all parties affected. Schools are required to make reasonable adjustments for students with a disability under the Standards.

When does the collection take place?

The National Data Collection is conducted in August each year.

Privacy protections

While it is not possible for schools or families to ‘opt out’ of the NCCD, the privacy and confidentiality of all students and their families is treated with utmost importance. Data is collected within each school, and personal details, such as student names and other identifying information, are not provided to local or federal education authorities.

Further information

You can visit the NCCD Portal. https://www.nccd.edu.au/

An e-learning resource is also available which cover the Disability Discrimination Act 199, and Disability Standards for Education 2005 is freely available for the use of individuals, families and communities. All material is available in most Languages.

An Information Notice for all parents and students also provides information, and can be accessed through the following link: https://docs.education.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/2020-3-13_information_notice.pdf

The article – ‘As a parent, guardian or carer, what do I need to know?’ is taken directly from the NCCD website and can be accessed through the following link: https://www.nccd.edu.au/for-parents-guardians-and-carers

If at any stage you have any questions relating to the NCCD, please feel welcome to contact either myself Mrs Elka Gaensler, Head of Learning Plus, Senior School at egaensler@stcatherines.net.au or Mrs Chris Hogan, Coordinator of Extension and Learning Support, Junior School at chogan@stcatherines.net.au.

Mrs Elka Gaensler, Head of Learning Plus / Education Support and Extension