NDIS introduces early childhood specific approach as guideline for the first time
The Sector > Policy > NDIS introduces early childhood specific approach as guideline for the first time

NDIS introduces early childhood specific approach as guideline for the first time

by Freya Lucas

June 29, 2021

The national disability insurance scheme (NDIS) has, for the first time, produced a guideline for the NDIS early childhood approach.


“The early childhood approach is our nationally consistent approach to working with children younger than seven, who have a developmental delay or disability, and their families,” a spokesperson said. 


“Children who do not fully meet the definition of developmental delay and have developmental concerns are also supported through our early childhood approach.”


Children do not need a specific diagnosis to receive support under the NDIS, with support for families available through early childhood partnerships which aim to provide early intervention. 


“The early childhood approach recognises the rights of the child, and the important role the families play in supporting children to learn and develop,” the NDIS noted.


The early childhood approach guideline explains how the early childhood approach works. It also covers important information on:


  • the key factors of the early childhood approach, including the guidelines on best practice in early childhood intervention; 
  • early childhood partners and what they do; and, 
  • how to get support for a child and what happens if there are no early childhood partners in any given area.


New name for an existing approach


This is the first time the NDIS has published the early childhood approach as a guideline, however the approach was launched (as the Early Childhood Early Intervention Approach) in 2016 and has been delivered by NDIS early childhood partners previously. 


“The early childhood approach has not changed, apart from the name,” a spokesperson explained. 


Renaming the ECEI approach to early childhood approach was a recommendation in the recent consultation paper, Supporting young children and families early, to reach their full potential


The NDIS will continue to update the guideline as it makes improvements to the early childhood approach and responds to the feedback from the recent consultation around resetting the current early childhood early intervention reset.

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