Rights of parents and children

Rights of parents and their children in schools

It is important to understand your rights as a parent or carer and the rights of your child in the school system.

As a parent or carer you have a right to:

  • Confidentiality
    • between yourself and the school
    • between service providers and the school

This means information about your child and family can only be shared with your permission.

  • Collaboration
    • around the range of educational services available
    • about assessment materials and procedures
    • about your child’s educational programme
    • about your child’s placement

This means the school must include you in making decisions about your child’s education.

  • Advocacy Participation
    • in your child’s assessment
    • in the planning and review of educational programmes
    • in the review of your child’s placement

This means you can provide information about your child and have your say in these things.

  • Support
    • from school and area personnel
    • from an advocate, if desired
    • from a nominated support person such as a family member, friend, or community liaison officer
    • from an accredited interpreter

This means you can get help from any of these people to find out information and/or get support at meetings.

Your child has a right to:*

  • Confidentiality
    • between parents or caregivers and the school
    • between service providers and the school

This means information about them can only be shared with their permission.

  • Information
    • about assessment materials and procedures
    • about their educational programmes

This means information must be made available to your child.

  • Participation
    • in the assessment process
    • in the planning and review of his/her programmes
    • in the review of school placement

This means your child can provide information about themselves and have a say in these things as they grow and develop.

  • Support
    • from school and area personnel
    • from an advocate, if desired
    • from a nominated support person such as a family member, friend or community liaison officer
    • from an accredited interpreter

This means you can get help from any of these people to find out information and get support at meetings.

(Reference: "Who’s Going to teach my child?" Department of Education and Training, 2008)


* While these rights apply to your child when they start school, they may not be yet able to exercise their rights. You are able to do it with them or for them.

Legislation relating to the rights of people with disabilities:

The Federal Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (DDA) makes it illegal in Australia to discriminate against a person on the basis of their disability across a range of areas of life including education.

Click here for information about The Disability Discrimination Act (1992).

In August 2005, the Federal Government made Disability Standards in the area of education, known as the Disability Standards on Education 2005 (the Education Standards). The Education Standards set out the rights of students with disability under the DDA in the area of education. They also set out the obligations of education providers, like schools and universities, under the DDA to assist students with disability in the area of education.

Click here for information about the Education Standards specifically.