New Australian Law on Disability Discrimination in Education
Laws which establish new education standards for students with disabilities have been passed by federal parliament.
The Disability Discrimination Amendment (Education Standards) Bill 2004 aims to provide more clarification about the obligations of schools and other education providers under the Disability Discrimination Act.
It also provides greater certainty for education institutions by allowing them a defence of so-called unjustifiable hardship after a student with a disability is enrolled.
In the Senate, Kim Carr (ALP, Vic) said the ALP supported the bill but called on the government to provide better funding for the new standards.
Senator Carr was worried about the unjustifiable hardship defence for schools once a student with a disability had been enrolled.
The measure "may well be taken advantage of by some educational authorities where they've failed to meet their commitments in the past", he said.