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Community and Support

0I2A1551 (Used Community Support Content Page)

What is the Preschool Disability Support Program (PDSP)?

The PDSP is funded by the NSW Department of Education and is administered by a program manager on the Department’s behalf. The PDSP replaces the Supporting Children with Additional Needs (SCAN) program and the preschool component of the Intervention Support program (ISP).

The PDSP comprises four key elements:

The Universal Disability Loading

The new Universal Disability Loading provides funding to all preschools to support the educational inclusion of children with disability. The loading will be paid annually, and recognises the widespread prevalence of disability and assists preschools to meet their educational obligations under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 and Disability Standards for Education 2005. The disability loading must be used to support the inclusion of children with disability or additional needs.

Child focused targeted support

Child focused targeted support provides funding to assist community preschools support individual children with disability or additional needs. These children will have moderate to high needs in relation to learning or the support that enables them to participate and engage in the learning environment, and funding will assist in achieving equitable education outcomes. Funding is application based, and applications are managed and assessed by Northcott using these guidelines. The amount of funding is based on the child’s level of educational need and there are three funding levels. Funding is provided to support access for up to 15 hours a week or 600 hours per year per child.

For further information about targeted support, refer to section 7 of the PDSP guidelines.

Support for preschools

Northcott will provide telephone and online support for metropolitan, regional and remote community preschools. This will include advice on applications, funding and how to access support, training and resources to help preschools improve educational outcomes for children with disability. The focus of the training program in subsequent years will be dependent on the identified learning needs of the sector and feedback received throughout the year.

Scholarships for post-graduate study

Scholarships for post graduate study in Special Education will strengthen the capacity of the preschool workforce. Up to 20 scholarships will be available each year and will cover the full cost of a Graduate Certificate or Master's program at an approved university. Priority access will be given to applicants in rural and remote NSW, and indigenous applicants.

Is my child eligible?

For your community preschool to get PDSP funding, your child must be at least three years old on 31 July and have one of the following disabilities or additional needs:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Behaviour and social/emotional disability (severe)
  • Chronic health conditions
  • Developmental delay
  • Intellectual impairment
  • Multiple disabilities
  • Physical impairment
  • Hearing impairment
  • Vision impairment 
  • Speech/language (moderate and severe)

The additional need might need to be assessed by a preschool teacher, a doctor, or a medical specialist.