Catholic Education Services

Who are we?

Catholic schools embrace and celebrate diversity and difference, welcoming all members of the community as equal. At the heart of the work for Catholic education is the formation of each young person. With this mindset, inclusive learning experiences are designed to eliminate discrimination, actively engage all students in learning, and focus on growth and progress for all through a multi-tiered system of support that delivers inclusive education.

Visiting teachers in Victorian Catholic education are known as learning consultants or education officers and are part of the broader Learning Diversity team.

Learning consultants or education officers are teachers who have experience and specific expertise in supporting students with diverse learning, behavioural, health and wellbeing needs.

About our program

Schools are able to access services via an online consultation request with parental consent. This process involves a functional needs assessment and provision of relevant documentation to inform the most appropriate service from the Learning Diversity team. The consultation service provided may relate to hearing, vision, physical and chronic health impairments, academic progress, learning disorders, school refusal or poor attendance, or social/emotional, sensory or behavioural needs.

Service provision is primarily consultative, focusing on supporting the school to understand a student’s identified needs and make reasonable adjustments to maximise access and participation in education. At times, the service can be of a direct nature to facilitate evaluation of the adjustments or to further consult with the student regarding their needs. A key role of the service is to assess needs and the required supports through close liaison with the Program Support Group, and to link to appropriate educational supports and/or brokered services.

Services we offer

Services provided to school staff, students and parents/carers may include:

  • advice related to COVIDSafe practices in supporting the onsite education of vulnerable students during COVID-19 lockdowns
  • advice related to COVIDSafe practices and the use of personal protective equipment, particularly when providing attendant care
  • enhancement of teacher knowledge and practice to make appropriate adjustments
  • provision of specialist strategies to support engagement, access and inclusion for students with disabilities and additional learning needs
  • support and advice in development and implementation of Personalised Learning Plans
  • provision of professional learning and consultation to schools with a focus on building staff capacity at a school level
  • liaison with outside agencies, e.g. Scope, the Royal Children’s Hospital, Hearing Australia, Guide Dogs Victoria
  • provision of information about resources, equipment or assistive technologies
  • support in developing and monitoring Medical Management Plans, inclusive of environmental audits and risk assessments
  • support for students with complex medical, mobility and communication needs in their transition to school, from year to year, primary to secondary and post-school
  • provision of secondary consultation where students require supplementary adjustment to support their sensory impairments
  • collaborative work with the school using data to recommend evidence-based management strategies to support the student.


Learning consultants and education officers also maintain links with a range of external agencies (e.g. Hearing Australia, Cochlear Implant clinics, Statewide Vision Resource Centre, the Royal Children’s Hospital Education Institute and Ronald McDonald House). They engage in professional learning provided by service organisations such as Asthma Australia, Epilepsy Foundation, Victorian Deaf Education Institute and Diabetes Australia. They then provide this information to schools through targeted professional learning in specific schools or regionally.

Note: Each diocese may vary their approach and consultation process.

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