Transition and Pathways
Transition pathways refers to the range of options available to an individual after leaving school, further education, training and employment. People with a disability, like those without a disability will be considering options that not only reflect personal interests, skills and abilties but that also take into consideration their individual support needs if any are required.
There are a range of services and support available for people with a disability in education, training and employment and it is important to discuss your individual needs with your education provider, employment consultant or employer.
To find out information about specific services in your area please follow the link to the NDCO in your region.
Broaden Your Horizons is a centralised website that houses resources relating to young people with disabilities. This resource is dedicated to provide quality career and transition information and support services available to people with disabilities.
Careers and Employment
Career development is the ongoing process of managing your life, learning and work. It involves developing the skills and knowledge that enable you to plan and make informed decisions about your education, training and career choices. The Australian and Victorian Governments have a range of initiatives to help all Australians, particularly young people with the support of their families and communities, have access to services through and beyond school which assist them to:
make informed choices when selecting schools, courses and post-school opportunities
connect education and training pathways with career choices and employment prospects
access the broad range of community services and specialist supports available to them.
The Australian Government Department of Education is responsible for national policies and programmes that help Australians access quality and affordable childcare; early childhood education, school education, post-school, higher education, international education and academic research.
The Australian Government Department of Employment is responsible for national policies and programmes that help Australians find and keep employment and work in safe, fair and productive workplaces.
Get Ready Workbook Series
The NDCO program has developed a series of workbooks for young people with disability, a chronic medical condition or a mental health condition to help plan life after school. These workbooks are based on the top ten tips for moving into post school education, training and employment pathways. They contain practical activities, facts on rights and responsibilities, useful links and more! The workbooks are FREE to download and can be progressively completed electronically and saved to a computer. There is also a plain text version for users of assistive technology and an Easy English version of the Student and ATSI workbook for people with low literacy or language skills.
There are three workbooks:
Get Ready – Top Tips for Students with Disability
Get Ready – Top Tips for ATSI Students with Disability
Get Ready – A Guide for Parents
You can download all versions at https://www.westernsydney.edu.au/getreadyforstudyandwork/home
Careers and Employment-related websites
www.JobSearch.gov.au (for all job seekers)
www.myfuture.edu.au (for youth)
JobAccess (for people with disability)
Australian Government Career Information (for careers information)
For information on Internships and the “Stepping Into” Programme, contact the Australian Employers Network on Disability 1300 363 645 or visit https://www.and.org.au/
Careers and Transition Resource Kit produced by the Department of Education and Training (DET) this is a comprensive resource with lesson plans designed to assist career educators to deliver quality programs for students for young people developing an understanding about careers.
Some guidelines and information are provided for using the resources with:
Koorie young people
English as a Second Language (ESL) and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) young people
Young people with disabilities
Young people not in employment, education or training
Rural and remote young people
Worksheets for students are provided in word format so that they can be downloaded and adapted to suit the needs of particular groups.
Careertips.net.au has been developed specifically as an information guide, resource kit and referral source for people with disabilities who are in their final years of school, who are about to commence or are undertaking vocational education and training (VET) studies, or university studies, or have recently graduated from one of these pathways.
Pathways Planning for Young People with Disability
This page includes information on supporting young people with disabilities in their career and pathway planning. For young people with disabilities supported under the Program for Students with Disabilities, a strengthened approach is recommended.
Disability Employment Supports
A person with a disability can choose services to match their current support needs and employment goals.
School Leavers Employment Supports (SLES)
SLES offers those who are NDIS eligible support for up to 2 years after finishing year 12 to help get ready for work and plan pathways to employment. SLES supports are be tailored to meet individual employment goals. This may include:
- Work experience in open employment
- Job skills training
- Travel training
The NDIA works with Education to support students with disability to make a smooth transition into SLES or other employment supports.
SLES and other service systems
The NDIS will be responsible for funding supports that assist people with disability prepare for, and take part in work where the person has work capacity but needs some more support before receiving ongoing employment support through existing systems.
Employment services and programs, including both disability-targeted and open employment services, will continue to be responsible for providing advice and support to:
- People with disability to prepare for, find and maintain jobs;
- Encourage employers to hire and be inclusive of people with disability in the workplace (e.g. support, training and resources, funding assistance to help employers make reasonable adjustments, and incentives for hiring people with disability , such as wage subsidies).
Australian Disability Enterprises
Australian Disability Enterprises (ADEs) are part of a continuum of employment opportunities for people with disability and act as a link, helping them gain training and experience to confidently step into open employment or to continue in supported employment if they choose.
ADEs support people with moderate to severe disability to engage in a wide variety of work tasks such as packaging, assembly, production, recycling, screen printing, plant nursery, garden maintenance and landscaping, cleaning services, laundry services and food services.
ADEs offer similar working conditions as other employers and an opportunity for people with a disability to contribute and connect to their local community.
Directory of Australian Disability Enterprises
Disability Employment Services
Disability Employment Services have two streams:
• Disability Management Services are for job seekers with a disability, injury or health condition who need the assistance of a Disability Employment Service and who might need irregular or occasional support in the workplace. (Program A)
• Employment Support Service is designed specifically for job seekers with permanent disability who require regular ongoing support in the workplace. (Program B)
Disability Employment Services are available only people to with a permanent (or likely permanent) disability, and provide longer term, more personalised support to build capacity, look for work and stay in employment. With the introduction of DES access to training will also form part of the assistance provided. Some financial assistance is available to participants to obtain work related items or training, but is subject to negotiation with each provider. The service provides access to the Wage Subsidy Scheme and assistance to access the Supported Wage System and Workplace Modifications Scheme.
Special measures are in place to;
Provide support for school leavers with disability to look for work
Provide support for existing workers with disability whose employment is in jeopardy as a result of their disability
Provide support for pre-release prisoners with disability to look for work
Provide support for specific disability types from specialist providers
JobAccess is an easy to use web site and a free telephone information and advice service where you can access confidential, expert advice on the employment of people with disability.It offers help and workplace solutions for people with disability and their employers.
The web site has been designed to provide information developed specifically for employers, job seekers and employees with disability, co-workers of people with disability and Australian Government employment service providers. It has step by step guides and checklists on recruitment, job searching, adjusting a workplace, employer incentives, understanding rights and responsibilities at work and much more.
Contact them on 1800 464 800 or online:
To find your nearest Disability Employment Services Provider follow this link;
Traineeships and Apprenticeships
Australian Apprenticeships (often referred to as apprenticeships or traineeships) are available to anyone of working age. You don’t need a secondary school certificate or other qualification to be able to do an Australian Apprenticeship. You can do an Australian Apprenticeship if you are a school-leaver, re-entering the workforce or as an adult worker simply wishing to change careers. You can even begin your Australian Apprenticeship while you’re still at school finishing Years 11 and 12. As an Australian Apprentice you can combine time at work with training, and can be either full-time, part-time or school-based. More information on Australian Apprenticeships, including eligibility, visit the Australian Apprenticeships or Australian Apprenticeship Pathways websites.
Australian Apprenticeship Pathways
School based Apprenticeships
You may be able to start an Australian Apprenticeship while you’re still at school. Australian Schoolbased Apprenticeships are a mix of academic, vocational education and training, and paid employment, where students’ school studies, training, and work all fit together. Your career advisers and teachers will be able to provide you with information about Australian School-based Apprenticeship options available at your school. School students can complete an Australian Apprenticeship whilst they are still at school. This is known as an Australian School-based Apprenticeship.
Australian Apprentices with Disability
Australian Apprentices with disability and their employers may be eligible to receive additional assistance under the Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Program. A range of assistance is available to support Australian Apprentices with disability, including Disabled Australian Apprentice Wage Support which is paid to employers, and assistance for tutorial, interpreter and mentor services for apprentices. Assistance is also available through the Employment Assistance Fund which helps people with disability and mental health condition by providing assistance to purchase a range of work related modifications and services. Employers can access the scheme via JobAccess or through Disability Employment Services or Job Services Australia. This assistance is intended to help the Australian Apprentice with disability, either directly, or indirectly through their employer, to reach their full potential as a skilled worker and to ensure that they are not excluded from participation in the Program. Further information on Support for Australian Apprentices
Disabled Australian Apprentice Wage Support (DAAWS)
Disabled Australian Apprentice Wage Support (DAAWS) is an Australian Government incentive payable to an employer who employs an Australian Apprentice who satisfies the disability eligibility criteria in an Australian Apprenticeship. This wage support is also available to an employer who employs an Australian Apprentice who becomes disabled during their apprenticeship or traineeship. Further information can be found at:
Tutorial, interpreter and mentor services
Tutorial, interpreter and mentor services are available to Australian Apprentices who have been assessed as eligible for DAAWS and who require additional assistance with their off-the-job training. This form of assistance is payable only to the Registered Training Organisation (RTO) in respect of an Australian Apprentice eligible for DAAWS where the Australian Apprentice is experiencing difficulty with the off-the-job training component of their Australian Apprenticeship because of that disability.
The Occupational Assessment supports the provision of additional assistance and the RTO proposes specific additional assistance related to off-the-job training. Payments for these services are made directly to the RTO providing or facilitating the service. Further information can be found at:
Employment Assistance Fund for Work Modifications and Services
The Employment Assistance Fund helps people with disability and mental health condition by providing financial assistance to purchase a range of work related modifications and services. Assistance is available for people who are about to start a job or who are currently working, as well as those who require assistance to find and prepare for work. The Fund may reimburse the cost of work related modifications and services including, but not limited to:
The cost of modifications to the physical work environment
Modifications to work vehicles
Adaptive equipment for the workplace
Information and communication devices
Specialist services for employees with specific learning disorders and mental health conditions
Disability awareness training
Deafness awareness training, and
Mental health awareness training
Recruitment agencies may also apply for reimbursement of Auslan interpreting that they provide for a job interview. Further information can be found at:
For more information about Australian Apprenticeships visit your local Australian Apprenticeships Centre or call the Australian Apprenticeships referral line on 13 38 73 to find Australian Apprenticeships Centres in your region.
Victoria Information on apprentice workplace rights and conditions can be found on the Fair Work Ombudsman website fairwork.gov.au or by calling the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94
Job Access Advisers
If you have questions but are not sure who to ask, the JobAccess Advisers can help. To contact a JobAccess Adviser visit;
1800 464 800
Other useful information
Department of Education and Training
TAFE and University Support
Going to TAFE or University?
You may need to meet the Disability Liaison Officer
What is a Disability Liaison Officer?
There may be occasions where students need to negotiate reasonable adjustment due to disability with academic and general staff of the TAFE or University. The Disability Liaison Officer can assist with these negotiations.
The Disability Liaison Officer is available to discuss with you the range of strategies or services that are available for students with disability. The Disability Liaison Officer will also work with your teachers/lecturers to support them to implement ‘reasonable adjustments’ that are designed to facilitate your active participation in the course of your choice. The DLO can provide teaching staff with advice on:
* How disability affects study*Alternate formats for reference and study material* Adapting assessments to accommodate students’ specific abilities* Alternate / inclusive teaching strategies* Resources and technologies that are available to assist the teaching and learning process
What are reasonable adjustments?
Reasonable adjustment is the action taken to assist a student with a disability to participate in education and training on the same basis as other students. The DDA through the Disability Standards for Education requires education providers to take reasonable steps to enable the student with a disability to participate in education on the same basis as a student without a disability. Reasonable adjustments vary depending on the students individual needs, some examples of reasonable adjustment include; modifications to the physical environment eg ergonomic chairs, ramps changes to course design Eg modifying assessment tasks, changes in lecture schedules and arrangements, relocating classes to an accessible venue, modifications to computer equipment eg text to speech or screen reading software, provision of information or course materials in accessible formats, extensions on exams or assessment due dates
Contacting the DLO
Every TAFE and University has a Disability Liaison Officer (DLO) usually located in student support services. It is important that you contact the DLO early if you believe you will require reasonable adjustments while you study. If you contact the DLO well before the course starts they will have time to implement the adjustments you require in time for you starting the course. What you share with the Disability Liaison Officer is confidential unless you give permission for the information to be shared with teachers / lecturers.
Preparing for TAFE
A guide for Students with a Disability in Victoria
Prepare for University
A guide for students with a disability at University in Victoria
Tertiary Transition CDs
The National Disability Coordination Officer (NDCO) Program has testimonials from students with a range of disabilities who have participated in tertiary education. If you would like a copy of any of the following CD’s please ask your regional NDCO.
To listen to the CD’s in full please go to the following link