Special Education Support Services | Western Cape Government

Special Education Support Services


Primary school learner reading a book in class.

The Western Cape Education Department’s (WCED) Directorate: Inclusive and Specialised Education Support offers a range of services for learners who experience barriers to learning/require additional support/are vulnerable, as well as capacity building for educators to provide for these learners. These services include:

  • psychological, social work, education therapy and learning support
  • education programmes in ordinary schools (including full-service/inclusive schools) and special schools

The directorate manages 71 special schools. Specialised Support Services are also based at district offices in all 8 education districts of the Western Cape. Four of the district offices are in the metro region of Cape Town and 4 are in the rural areas. Each circuit in a district has a team comprising a social worker, psychologist and learning support advisor. Other services at district level include a manager for specialised support services, senior therapist, senior psychologist, senior social worker, learning support coordinator and an HIV Care and Support Coordinator. 

The WCED policy is to provide support to the learners in the ordinary schools as far as possible, taking the support to the learners rather than the learner to the support. Itinerant learning support teachers provide support in ordinary schools. Selected ordinary schools, have been developed into full-service/inclusive schools to provide moderate level support. Only learners with high support needs are placed at special schools. Designated special school resource centres have outreach teams that support ordinary schools, particularly full-service/inclusive schools.

Learners access services according to their level of need via the WCED support pathway which incorporates the national Screening, Identification, Assessment and Support protocol. Applications for high level support are via school-based support teams to the district-based support team.  

There is collaboration with the departments of health and social development to access supplementary services and to implement the integrated school health programme.

The directorate with other role-players is striving to develop an inclusive education system with support available in a range of settings for all those learners who require this. 


For more information, contact your nearest EMDC or:
Berenice Daniels
PA: Marike Martin
Tel: 021 467 2027/8
Fax: 021 425 7465
E-mail: Berenice.Daniels@westerncape.gov.za

Provided At: These facility categories:
Provided by:
Government Body: (Western Cape Education Department, Western Cape Government)
The content on this page was last updated on 12 November 2019