Queensland Education Services Team (QEST)

Queensland Education Services Team (QEST) thumbnail.

DSQ works to improve the educational opportunities and outcomes for individuals with intellectual disabilities by providing training, resources, and support for schools, educators, and families.

The Queensland Education Services Team (QEST) is a comprehensive consulting service that offers ongoing support, with in-depth strategies and detailed recommendations, to suit your student’s learning environment. The QEST service is designed to improve access to and participation in the curriculum, and educational outcomes for students with intellectual disabilities or Down syndrome by working in partnership with students support teams.

Through QEST, we offer any school teaching students with intellectual disabilities the following services that can be tailored to individual needs:

  • School consultation packages (including school visits OR online consultations that consists of class observations and key stakeholder meetings)
  • Professional Development and workshops for staff to ensure a whole school approach to inclusion (includes onsite or virtual consultation to support teaching student/s with Down syndrome)
  • Membership to the Professional Teaching Cluster, a free collaborative network.

The QEST service is funded by the Queensland’s Department of Education through the Non-State Special Needs Organisation (NSSNO) program.

Services offered through QEST include:

Observation & Consultation

The Education Services Team provides a comprehensive consulting service that delivers ongoing support through a 4-phase process that offers in-depth strategies and recommendations to improve learning environments and educational outcomes:

  • Phase 1: School intake
  • Phase 2: Student observation
  • Phase 3: Staff consultation
  • Phase 4: Reporting, recommendations and resources

The Student Consultation service can be conducted face-to-face or via Zoom/Teams. Any incurred travel costs are incurred by the school undertaking this service.

Professional Development & workshops for staff

Professional Development courses and workshops are delivered by the Education Services Team onsite (at your school or at our office) or virtually (via Zoom or Teams) and consists of leading the teaching team through an inclusion-based presentation outlining ways to support, providing strategies to overcome potential barriers to learning.

These courses are for educators of students with intellectual disabilities and are tailored to the specific needs of the staff. This may include workshopping planning adjustments and discussing topics such as universal design for learning, using visual supports, inclusive pedagogies and differentiation.

Professional Teaching Cluster

The DSQ Professional Teaching Cluster is designed to provide ongoing support and advice to educators around across Queensland by providing a platform for teachers, teaching aides, inclusion officers and anyone that teaches students with intellectual disabilities to discuss relevant education information, resources and seek advice from fellow consultant and educators.

The cluster is a FREE service, made of a large group educators that meet via Zoom one to two times per school term to explore a range of subjects around inclusive pedagogies, communication strategies, planning adjustments, about Down syndrome, and more.

To be added to our Professional Teaching Cluster, please email us at education@downsyndromeqld.org.au.

How can I access the service?

The QEST services are available to all schools and teaching staff of students’ with an Intellectual Disability. All services are available to be delivered throughout the school year.

To book in your next education consultation service, professional development workshop or to be added to our Professional Teaching Cluster, please contact our QEST team via (07) 3356 6655 or at education@downsyndromeqld.org.au.

What our schools say:

“DSQ Education Services were very informative and provided some great ideas and resources for easy use in school environments. Strategies and resources were appropriate for school implementation and were effective in increasing the student’s participate and engagement in classroom learning. Increased staff knowledge around Down syndrome occurred as a result of this service. It was great to have positive feedback on the strategies that we were already implementing, to know we were on the right track to inclusively support our student.”

“The DSQ education consultant was very informative and supportive. We received good affirmations of student’s abilities and what the school/teacher has done well. The services has definitely improved our student’s participation and outcomes in their learning.”