Funding for ESW for disabled child in ECE after age 5 and throughout the year
Katrina Bevan made this Official Information request to Ministry of Education
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From: Katrina Bevan
Dear Ministry of Education,
I would like to know how the Ministry of Education plans to ensure a developmentally delayed child (DSM-5) with intellectual disabilities in ECE receives ESW funding for learning support after the age of 5 up until at least 6years and the same child receives ESW relevant to ECE hours instead of being based on public school terms as is currently the case for the purpose of access to learning support education to allow learners with disabilities to attend their ECE with consistent ESW learning support.
Please specifically answer:
1. How do you allocate funding ESW for a child with disabilities in ECE to ensure the learning support provided because of disability/ learning needs is consistent for them in ECE when ECE operates all year through, is not a public school, has no “holiday breaks”?
2. How do you enforce funding of an ESW worker for learning support to a child living with disabilities who intends to remain in ECE beyond 5years of age because a child does not need to be enrolled in a school until age 6?
3. How do you intend to ensure that
funding allocated is standard for a child with identified disabilities from ECE to school and how is it monitored?
From: Enquiries National
Ministry of Education
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From: Enquiries National
Ministry of Education
Kia ora Katrina
Thank you for your email, apologies for the delayed reply.
In answer to your questions:
1. How do you allocate funding ESW for a child with disabilities in ECE to
ensure the learning support provided because of disability/learning needs
is consistent for them in ECE when ECE operates all year through, is not a
public school, has no “holiday breaks”?
Funding for an ESW is calculated on the basis of school terms. Decision
making about the support a child needs as part of their individual plan is
a collaborative process with whānau, educators and specialist providers.
2. How do you enforce funding of an ESW worker for learning support to a
child living with disabilities who intends to remain in ECE beyond 5 years
of age because a child does not need to be enrolled in a school until age
The ESW resource can be part of an early intervention team to support the
inclusion and individual plans of children with the highest level of needs
in ECE programmes.
The Ministry’s National Education Support Worker Guidelines (2012) were
developed collaboratively with a representative from other Ministry funded
Specialist Service providers (who they nominated themselves).
In accordance with the national ESW guidelines, the recommended weekly
allocation is a maximum of 15 hours to support the inclusion of children
with the highest level of needs in licensed early childhood programmes.
Once again, decision making about the support a child needs is a
collaborative process with whānau, educators and specialist providers and
is linked to the child’s individual plan.
Each region manages their own ESW budget and use the ESW guidelines to
allocate ESW support. The ESW guidelines state that priority is given to
children aged three to five. However, in exceptional circumstances
managers can approve the allocation of ESW beyond five. There needs to
be an individual plan in place that includes plans for future transition
to school at a time that is in the best interest of the child as agreed
with the collaborative team. The resource can be used by managers in the
regions flexibly on a case by case basis.
The allocation of ESW assistance is carefully managed to enable the
maximum number of children get the right support.
3. How do you intend to ensure that funding allocated is standard for a
child with identified disabilities from ECE to school and how is it
The Ministry of Education does not allocate resources on the basis of a
label or a diagnosed disability. Resources are allocated to support
individual children’s access to education, whether that be early childhood
education or education at school. There is no standard allocation as every
child is different. There will be times when a child needs more support
and times when they need less. Decisions about the type and level of
support a child needs is a collaborative process with whānau, educators
and specialist providers. Children will have an individual plan, developed
collaboratively with the team around the child and that same team will
monitor the level of resourcing and determine if it is appropriate to meet
the goals set in the plan.
Learning Support, Ministry of Education
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