National Student Wellbeing Program
From 1 January 2023, all Victorian schools participating in the National Student Wellbeing Program (NSWP) can engage a chaplain or student wellbeing officer.
Government schools can:
- contract a chaplain or student wellbeing officer through a NSWP provider.
- Use the NSWP government school service .
- employ a student wellbeing officer as an education support staff member.
Education in government schools is required by law to be secular. Government schools engaging a chaplain must do so through an NSWP provider.
Administration fees charged by NSWP providers should be listed in the service agreement with the school. It is up to schools to secure value for money for the services they purchase.
Non-government schools can:
- employ a chaplain or student wellbeing officer; or
- contract a chaplain or student wellbeing officer through an NSWP provider.
Extending existing school roles
Schools can use NSWP funding to extend existing roles. Schools must be able to show a net increase in the provision of wellbeing services to students and the school community.
The extended role must complement the role of a chaplain or student wellbeing officer under the NSWP. The person appointed to the role must also meet the NSWP qualification and training requirements.
For example, - a school has a part-time student wellbeing officer. The school can use NSWP funding to increase the time fraction of that role. The student wellbeing officer will also need to meet the NSWP qualification and training requirements.
NSWP providers recruit, employ, train, supervise and support chaplains and student wellbeing officers that they employ.
NSWP providers collaborate with principals to:
- select a chaplain or student wellbeing officer
- create a work plan that describes the duties that the chaplain or student wellbeing officer will undertake.
NSWP providers pay the salary and employment costs for chaplains and student wellbeing officers.
NSWP providers must enter into an agreement with the Department of Education to deliver the NSWP in Victorian schools.
The department does not endorse any specific NSWP provider.
The list of NSWP providers is currently being finalised.
The choice of NSWP provider is a matter for the school. Schools do not need to use the same NSWP provider each year. Schools should compare NSWP provider fees and services to secure value for money.
Any organisation that wants to provide NSWP services in Victoria can express interest by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Funding, reporting and accountability
Funding for schools is provided to:
- government schools by the Department of Education
- Catholic schools by the Catholic Education Commission of Victoria
- independent schools by Independent Schools Victoria.
Schools and NSWP providers must provide reports to meet reporting requirements upon request. Schools and NSWP providers must provide reports to the Department to ensure chaplains and student wellbeing officers are operating in accordance with the service agreements and program guidelines.
A school can withdraw from the NSWP at any time. To withdraw, notify the Department of Education by sending an email to email@example.com.
See: Use of NSWP
Reviewed 17 March 2023