Education Support funding program



To assist schools and regions to enhance education support to eligible students in out-of-home care (OOHC), which is linked to goals identified through the student's education support planning process and based upon an assessment of the student's needs in relation to:

  • participation—access, attendance and engagement in education
  • wellbeing—social, emotional, psychological and physical
  • academic achievement—including extension and learning support
  • other priorities.

Assistance provided through the Educational Support Funding Program (ESFP) should be to supplement, when required, the services and programs already provided by schools to support the academic, social and emotional needs of all students including, but not limited to, learning and disability support, and access to guidance officers, school-based youth health nurses, chaplains, youth support coordinators, student welfare workers.

Duration of program



State schools, secondary schools and special schools that have eligible student enrolments and have submitted education support plans to their regional office.

Allocation of funds

Each region should develop a regional action plan based on:

  • the particular needs of eligible students in OOHC enrolled in their schools, identified through requests based on the education support plan process
  • all school based support services and other programs currently available
  • gaps in education support services
  • funds provided by Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women under Child Related Costs—Education Support
  • funds available to the region.

Current regional methodologies

Metropolitan region

  • Schools can access targeted ESFP funds for eligible students in OOHC.
  • Submissions are made by schools to Metropolitan regional office accompanied by the student's education support plan. Funding requests are based on their individual educational needs and participation in educational activities as identified in their Education Support Plans (ESPs).
  • Funds are allocated in 2 major funding rounds—at the beginning of Semester 2 (25 weeks, includes 5 weeks of next Calendar year) and Semester 1 (15 weeks).
  • Submissions are considered according to individual needs by the Regional Working Party for Students in OOHC—a group consisting of representatives from the Department of Education (DoE) and Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women.
  • Funding allocations are very specific and each school receives notification outlining funding details for each student, what the funds have been approved for and the conditions of the allocation.
  • Emergent/Contingency funding is available outside this time for short-term or unexpected needs or for students new to Metropolitan Region schools or newly placed in care.
  • ESFP may be used to implement regional or school based strategies aimed at closing the educational gap between students in OOHC and other students.

South East region

  • Schools submit applications for each student in either Standard—Form 1 or Complex—Form 2.
  • A regional panel made up of DoE and Department of Communities, Disability Services and Seniors representatives meets each term to assess the complex applications.
  • Standard—Form 1 applications attract approximately $450–$500 each.
  • Complex is based on needs and is normally a contribution to the program.

Darling Downs South West region

  • Program funding is distributed to schools based on OneSchool student enrolment data. Schools are paid a base rate of $500 per eligible student.
  • A portion of the funding is distributed to schools based on application to assist with complex needs. These applications are classified into high/medium/low, and funding is applied through a moderation process by the regional program team.

North Coast region

  • Schools submit individual education support plans for eligible students to the regional office with a request for funding.
  • Funding amounts are determined based on need and available funds .
  • Schools are advised by email of the approved allocations.

Central Queensland region

  • Schools prepare individual education support plans for eligible students.
  • Schools then submit these plans to the regional office with a request for funding.
  • Funding amounts are determined based on the identified costs and subject to budget availability. 
  • Some funding is held by the region to manage the program outcomes.

North Queensland region

  • Schools submit applications for funding twice each year. Urgent applications may be made at any time.
  • Regional staff consider applications for funding and allocate accordingly.
  • Schools receive an email advising the approved allocations.
  • Some funds are held by the region to manage the program outcomes.

Far North Queensland region

  • Schools prepare individual Education Support Plans for eligible students.
  • Schools then submit a funding application with the ESP to the regional office by a set date. Approximately 80% of funding is allocated in this process using a weighted basis that takes into account a student's participation in schooling, wellbeing and achievement.
  • The remainder of the budget is held as contingency funding which can be applied for at any time during the year for emergent issues.

Payment details

Payment timelines and proportions will change from year to year based on the school calendar and how each region assesses funding applications from schools. Contingency funding is generally assessed and paid on an ad-hoc basis.

Data requirements

DataSourceTime collected
Data requirements as specified in the Memorandum of Understanding with the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women

Regional and Central office data collection


Recoupment process

Schools receive funds based on individual students. If a student exits the school, refuses to engage in the service or program, or no longer qualifies for the program, recoupments of residual funding may be requested from the school.

How to apply

Access to funding under this program will depend on the specific regional funding allocation models. Please contact your local regional office for further information.


Central Queensland
Telephone (07) 4842 8300

Darling Downs and South West
Telephone (07) 4616 3771

Far North Queensland
Telephone (07) 4037 3822

Telephone (07) 3028 8052

North Coast
Telephone (07) 3203 9000

North Queensland
Telephone (07) 4758 3222

South East
Telephone (07) 5656 6688
Last updated 05 March 2020