Child InPatient Program

The Child Inpatient Program provides educational and social programs for inpatients of the State-wide Child Inpatient Unit. Students who attend the program come from mainstream and specialist schools across Victoria. They range in ages from 5 to 13 years, which includes Prep to Year 7.

The program specialises in promoting positive student engagement and social and emotional learning, as well as providing an individual learning plan based on the Australian Curriculum (AusVELS). The program is modified to suit the needs and interests of individual students.

In cooperation with the multidisciplinary team and in consultation with case managers, teachers work together to achieve the goals of the child’s admission.

The aims of the Child InPatient Program are to engage students in an educational intervention program by liaising with the student’s base school to develop recommendations that encourage and promote a successful reintegration. Student support plans are formulated to improve student wellbeing. ILPs are developed based on the needs of each student and assess progress against individual goals. Finally, student behaviour observations are made in a classroom setting and encourage students to explore various strategies that promotes positive student engagement.

Mia – The Austin School therapy Dog

What does Mia do?

Assists with transitioning into the classroom, reducing anxiety for many school refusers

Helps children who are dis-regulated to calm

Cuddles children with a trauma history when they need comfort

Distracts children from their thoughts when they take her for a walk around the school grounds

Promotes good health: brushing teeth, bathing, healthy eating and grooming time

Promotes conversation and a topic to write/draw about for those who are hesitant learners

Helps school refusing children get back to by taking her on a tour of the home school

Promotes risk-taking for those who are unfamiliar with animals

Children can communicate their worries through the dog

Enables therapeutic conversations to occur and relationships between teacher and child to be built

Providing comfort and support for staff