Legislative Council: Tuesday, June 13, 2023


Autism Support in Preschools

In reply to the Hon. H.M. GIROLAMO ().2 May 2023).

The Hon. E.S. BOURKE: The Minister for Education, Training and Skills has advised:

The Department for Education does not currently record autism-related qualifications centrally for staff in government preschools. However, work is underway to put in place a system to collect this information.

The Department for Education has updated the position descriptions for preschool directors and early childhood workers to include qualifications in special education or other relevant qualifications, or equivalent experience in working with and teaching children with autism as desirable. This criterion is also used on all recruitment advertisements for preschool teachers across the state. Work is underway to update school support officer role descriptions.

Preschool staff can access professional development opportunities through a range of autism-specific organisations that specialise in education and support. The department is exploring a range of options to make training more accessible and/or relevant for early years educators.