If you are exploring or starting a new school, look into doing transitions, explore the school together and in meetings discuss any plans you may want, or need for your child before they start. Such as:

  • individual education plan (IEP) or personal learning plan (PLP) may be developed to document specific educational goals, reasonable adjustments and to review your child’s progress over time.
  • Individual Behaviour Support Plan
  • Risk assessment—behaviour, safety and well-being
  • Functional behaviour assessment

The school and yourself need to have clear goals together.

There are three main options in Cairns for primary and high school – state school, (including Cairns state special school), private school or home schooling.

Queensland Department of Education and TrainingParents and carers has a directory of public schools in Queensland and information about the curriculum, student health and well-being and support services.

Queensland Department of Education and TrainingStudents with disability has information about choosing schools for children with disability, special education programs and services and other support.

The Queensland Catholic Education Commission has a directory to help you find your local Catholic school. You can also get information about the Education Adjustment Program that supports students with disability.  

Independent Schools Queensland has a directory of independent schools in Queensland. You can also find out how independent schools implement programs and strategies to enable students with disability to participate in school activities, access the curriculum and achieve learning outcomes. Phone (07) 3228 1515.


Schools have responsibility for maximising the learning outcomes and well-being of all students and for providing access to a high-quality education that is free from discrimination.

National Resources for Parents and Educators Australian Curriculum and Students with Disability.  This website has information on personalised learning, adjustments and consultation. It also has examples of personalised learning which link to the Australian Curriculum. 

Queensland Department of Education and Training
Website with information on supports for students with disability  and Disability-specific information.


Independent Schools Queensland (ISQ)
Search schools including boarding and distance education.


Inclusion – View Education Qld’s Inclusive education policy and support materials

The Education Adjustment Program (EAP) is a process for identifying and responding to the educational needs of students with disability who require significant education adjustments related to the specific impairment.
Download the Handbook (Word Doc)

A school-wide approach to creating a safe, supportive and disciplined school

Schools should be safe and supportive environments for everyone—students, teachers, school staff, families and members of the community.  For positive and respectful behaviour that will allow all students the opportunity to be successful learners.  


School Funding Estimator  –  Through the Quality Schools package the Commonwealth is investing a record $310.3 billion over 2018 to 2029 to support the needs of students in Australian schools. By 2029, all schools in the government, Catholic and independent sectors will be funded on a consistent basis by the Commonwealth.
Online estimator is currently unavailable. It is expected to be available in mid-January 2022



The Cairns Education Hub was established to provide an easy-to-browse reference point for all the State and Private Schools throughout the Cairns suburbs.


Choosing a school can be a difficult task, particularly if you are new to the region so Cairns Hub has put together a list of all the Cairns schools with links to their respective website and maps. 



Cairns School of Distance Education

Is a Queensland state school offering educational services to home based and school based learners from Prep to Year 12.


cairns special state school.jpg

Cairns State Special School is a co-educational state school facility (opened 2017)providing excellence in education in a friendly and supportive environment.

They provide a comprehensive, multidisciplinary approach ensuring educational, vocational, medical, paramedical and other support services maximise educational outcomes for all students.  Visit Website


Online Transition Resource

Information for families of children with ASD
Information for educators of students with ASD
Transition Information


Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Online Resource Transition Package information (Word Doc 1.6MB).

The resource aims to provide a broad understanding of the support available for children and young people with ASD.

The information is divided into sections relevant to families and educators, as well as information regarding further learning and support.