12 November 2020

Tania Maxwell MP, Member for Northern Victoria, has asked the Victorian Government why regional students have been excluded from the ‘Living Learning’ program, which delivers mental health services for young disengaged youth.

In a question to the Minister for Youth, Ms Maxwell asked why the ‘Living Learning’ program, announced on the 26 October at a cost of $15 million, appears to only have been made available for students in metropolitan Melbourne.

The Living Learning program is targeted at young people who have become disengaged from school and are living with mental health conditions – supplying them with additional support to complete their schooling.

Ms Maxwell said that the program appears to only be available for young people based in and around Melbourne and excludes students from regional Victoria. This is despite typically higher disengagement from employment, education and training, a larger youth justice intake, and greater demand for mental health support in regional Victoria than in Melbourne.

Ms Maxwell has asked the Minister why students in regional Victoria, especially those in her electorate of Northern Victoria, are not eligible to participate in this program, and if not, why that is the case.

Quotes attributable to Tania Maxwell MP:

 “Mental health issues for youth are a state-wide problem, and I would like the Living Learning program to be extended to include regional students.”

“Regional Victoria has higher rates of youth disengagement and mental health needs compared to the State average, so it is imperative that any funding or support is able to be accessed throughout the entire State.”