Chaplaincy and student welfare worker services


Chaplaincy and student welfare worker services are optional for schools and provide students and staff with social, emotional and spiritual support, provide an additional adult role model in the school and enhance engagement with the broader community including parents.

Local community support is required for chaplaincy and student welfare worker services to operate in a school. Student involvement in any activities offered as part of a school's chaplaincy or student welfare worker service is voluntary.

Chaplaincy and student welfare worker services are inclusive of and show respect for all religious and non-religious beliefs and other stances represented in the school community. All activities and events provided are non-discriminatory and equally available to students of all beliefs.

Chaplains and student welfare workers are not permitted to engage in evangelising or proselytising, nor attempt to undermine a student's religious or other beliefs.

The Chaplaincy and student welfare worker services policy statement (D​OC, 226KB) and supporting documents provide assistance for schools implementing a chaplaincy or student welfare worker service (paid or voluntary).

Many school communities (XLS, 162KB) across the state have established a chaplaincy or student welfare worker service with the assistance of state and/or Australian government funding and/or through local community fundraising. Some schools may have a volunteer chaplain or student welfare worker.

Government funded programs include:

  1. The State Government Chaplaincy/Student Welfare Funding Program (SGCSWFP)

    The SGCSWFP provides funding (recurrent) to eligible schools to engage the services of a chaplain or student welfare worker. There are 147 state schools in low socio-economic areas with enrolments over 100 students that are allocated funding through the SGCSWFP.

  2. The Queensland Government committed additional non-recurrent funds in 2015-2018 to ensure that schools could maintain an existing chaplaincy or student welfare worker service funded through the former National School Chaplaincy and Student Welfare Program (NSCP). The state government has continued this commitment for the 2019-2022 school years. Schools provided with this funding in 2018 continued to receive this funding in 2019, plus indexation. 

  3. National School Chaplaincy Program
    The NSCP is a 4-year (2019-2022) Australian Government funded program that provides funding to schools to engage a chaplain only. Schools that received NSCP funding in 2018 under the NSCP continued to receive funding in 2019, plus indexation.

    As part of the 2019-22 Project Agreement for the NSCP, NSCP funded chaplains are to complete a 3 hour online professional learning package (PLP) aimed at responding to and preventing cyberbullying. The PLP, developed and delivered by the Office of the eSafety Commissioner, is available to NSCP school chaplains, for a period of 18 months from July 2019.
    Information on the PLP, including frequently asked questions, is available on the Australian Government Department of Education webpage.

    NSCP funded chaplains can register for the training now.

All Queensland schools were invited to apply for NSCP and non-recurrent state government funding for the 2020-2022 school years.

By agreement of the Chaplaincy and student welfare worker programs cross-sector panel (DOCX, 289KB), the allocation of funding to schools was determined by each school sector with consideration for factors such as the number of full time equivalent student enrolments, continuity of service provision, socio-economic disadvantage, geographic location and other characteristics of the school community.

Information on the application and funding allocation processes for 2020-22 chaplaincy and student welfare worker funding is available in the NSCP FAQs (DOC, 176KB).

All government funding for chaplaincy and student welfare worker services in 2019-2020 is fully allocated.

Schools must use government funds for the purpose and specific type of service (chaplain or student welfare worker) for which they have been allocated. Schools should contact State Schools—Operations at for confirmation of service type if required.

Policy statement

Chaplaincy and student welfare worker services policy statement (DOC, 226KB)

Supporting documents


Contact for further information

If you have any questions, please contact your relevant schooling authority:

Department of Education, State Schools—Operations

Independent Schools Queensland
Ms Jacky Dawson
Phone: (07) 3228 1520

Queensland Catholic Education Commission
Mr John Clarke
Phone: (07) 3316 5860

Last updated 27 February 2020