Kilberry Valley Primary School

Ms GRALEY (Narre Warren South) — My adjournment matter is for the Minister for Education and concerns Kilberry Valley Primary School. The action I seek is that the minister ensure that Kilberry Valley Primary School receives funding through the Inclusive Schools Fund to create re-engagement spaces for students with disabilities. Kilberry Valley Primary School is an outstanding local school with a current enrolment of 833 students, including 90 students who are funded through the program for students with disabilities. The exceptional work being done by Kilberry Valley Primary School has led to its enrolment of students with disabilities increasing from 8 to 90 over the past six years, and 16 of those students began their journey at Kilberry Valley Primary School just a few weeks ago. It has also increased its education support staff from 8 to 43 to meet the complex and often unique needs of its students with disabilities.

To ensure it can continue to provide its students with the support and care they need, the school has identified the need for more quiet and supportive engagement spaces that are separate from the existing classrooms. Many of its students experience a range of sensory issues that can quickly become overwhelming and that it is often impossible to address in a classroom. The team at the school has found that the students who are overwhelmed or overstimulated benefit from working in a quieter environment. They are able to calm down, re-engage in their learning and return to the classroom.

Students who are feeling overwhelmed would be able to visit these re-engagement spaces to do just that. These spaces could be created through the modification of and addition to an existing school building and would include withdrawal spaces, a multisensory room and outdoor learning spaces and be shared for out-of-school care. This unique facility would ensure that students with disabilities would have access to the support they need to fully participate in school, re-engage in their learning and make the classroom a better place for all students.

I know that the principal, Neil Cunningham, and every single one of his teachers and support staff go above and beyond for their students. They deserve not only our admiration — they show incredible patience, kindness and skill — but also our support. I urge the minister to ensure they receive the support they need to continue their very fine work at Kilberry Valley Primary School.