Thousands of students across Western Sydney and the rest of NSW will benefit from more catch-up classes this coming school year thanks to a $253 million funding boost from the NSW Liberal and Nationals Government.

Member for Mulgoa, Tanya Davies welcomed the news for students and families, having seen the positive impact of the program so far.

“This program has been overwhelmingly positive for students across the electorate and so it’s fantastic the NSW Liberal and Nationals Government are boosting the funding for this coming school year, so thousands more students continue to benefit.”

Premier Dominic Perrottet said the pioneering small group tutoring initiative, started following COVID lockdowns to support school students who fell behind, is being extended to supercharge student learning as education moves beyond the pandemic.

“Making sure every student has the best possible start in life is a priority for the NSW Liberal and Nationals Government, and small group tutoring has been an important part of student growth these last two years,” said Mr Perrottet.

A recent evaluation of the Intensive Learning Support Program (ILSP) looked at the impact of the initiative on student learning and engagement from the teachers’ perspective. It showed student confidence and engagement improved by 80 per cent, and students’ motivation and attitude towards school had improved by 77 per cent and 69 per cent respectively.

Minister for Education and Early Learning Sarah Mitchell said the NSW Liberal and Nationals Government was seeing benefits for students and early career teachers.

“We are seeing students’ confidence and classroom engagement improve thanks to the support they’re receiving. At the same time, hundreds of pre-service teachers are gaining invaluable hands-on experience that will only strengthen their teaching over the long term,” Ms Mitchell said.

“It’s fantastic that students across all school sectors in NSW will continue to benefit from this scheme, thanks to the long-term economic plan of the NSW Liberal and Nationals Government.”

A wider evaluation of the program, including academic outcomes of students involved, will be completed by mid-2023 and will inform the approach to embedding small group tuition as part of the school system beyond 2023.

The NSW Liberal and Nationals Government invested more than $700 million in catch up classes for students in 2021 and 2022. Schools have already been provided $80 million in tutoring funding for the start of 2023, which will now be supplemented by a further $173 million.