Children with Additional Needs


$12.7 million in funding over four years!

Correspondence to School Representative Bodies from Minister for Education, Lauren Moss regarding a funding announcement for Students with Additional Needs (SWAN) - PDF


All children are entitled to be included and to participate in a high quality education. An inclusive education means that all students are welcomed regardless of gender, ethnicity, socio-economic background or educational need. They learn, contribute to, and take part in all aspects of school life.

The NT reports the highest proportion nationally of students with additional needs, with 27% of students receiving education adjustments. However, only 22% of all children receiving education adjustments have a formal diagnosis.

NT COGSO has a detailed understanding of the barriers NT families face when attempting to obtain a diagnosis and appropriate therapeutic supports for their children.

Barriers to obtaining a diagnosis can include:

  • low levels of health/disability literacy
  • high levels of socio-economic disadvantage
  • geographic isolation impacting access to health services
  • fragmented pathways between health and education
  • lack of affordable private pathways
  • long waiting lists

These barriers are compounded by an overrepresentation of complex family issues, chronic disease and psychological distress, particularly among ATSI populations and further exacerbated in remote locations.

As parents and carers, navigating through the health and education system to determine what assistance is possible can be challenging. The resources provided in this section may make the process easier for your family.


Understanding the Health Care System

The Northern Territory Government have created a NT Health Strategic Plan for 2023-2028 which outlines focus areas, outcomes and goals for health care in all regions of the Northern Territory. This document is useful in showing what the Government is doing to continue providing equitable health care services in the face of identified challenges.  

A number of Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) also work alongside the Northern Territory Government with more information on specific services, programs and initiatives found through NT Health. 


Rural and Remote Health 

Accessing health services in rural and remote areas can be challenging as they are not as readily available as they are in urban areas. The Northern Territory Government provide a range of specialised health services in remote locations. They are not always accessible at all times and usually operate on a rotating schedule. Contacting primary health clinics for information and support is a good way to access pathways to accessing suitable health care. 

More information about specific services can be found here