Analysis of learners with highest needs


The Social Wellbeing Agency has assisted the Ministry of Education with its review of supports for students with the highest levels of learning support need. The review(external link) is to ensure that children and young people with the highest needs for learning support achieve their full potential through positive education outcomes.

Our analysis determined what information was available in the IDI to identify: the nature of the needs that learners receiving individualised support had; the extent to which some learners might be missing out on support they need (unmet need); and the types of needs the learners with unmet needs might have.

The information available in the IDI was categorised into two different groups – information available in and outside the education system. The information in the education system included what learning supports people are receiving as most learning support programmes have application processes.

The information outside the education system was mostly from the health system and included diagnoses, functional assessments from the Needs assessment and Service Coordination services, the B4 School Check, and the Census, which asks parents questions about things their children can and cannot do in everyday life.

This analysis (external link)showed:

  • 11.8% of learners receive individualised learning support
  • 16.9% of learners have evidence of high needs inside or outside of the education system
  • 9% of learners showed evidence of additional learning support needs using data from outside the education system
  • 5.1% of learners have evidence of need outside of education and do not receive individualised learning support.

There is opportunity for more integrated screening and data sharing between the education and health systems to make sure that learners are not missing out on the support they need to enhance their wellbeing.  The Social Wellbeing Agency is continuing to work with the Ministry of Education on opportunities to more proactively measure and share needs across the social sector.

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