About Us


Burwood East Special Developmental School is a Department of Education Victorian government select entry school providing educational programs for primary and secondary school-aged students assessed as having a moderate to profound intellectual disability. Students may also have dual or multiple diagnoses such as sensory, physical, and autism spectrum disorder. An Early Education pre-school program is available for students assessed as having special needs aged 2.8-5 years.

The school is located in the eastern Melbourne suburb of Burwood East and provides an attractive and secure environment for learning, independence and exploration. Teaching spaces are designed for the learning and personal needs of the students.

We are a small family oriented school that puts the student at the centre of all of decisions.  We have an enrolment of 65 school aged students and 12 pre-school students in the Early Education Program. The school zone covers eastern suburbs located in the cities of Whitehorse, Maroondah, Boroondara, Manningham and Monash. Eligible school-aged students living within the designated transport area have access to bus transport to and from a pick up point. Some of our students are dual enrolled at our school and regular educational settings.

Pre-school students can begin when they are 2.8 years of age by January 1st of the year they enrol. School aged students are 5 years old by April 30th of the year they enrol. Students graduate from school at the conclusion of the year they turn 18 years old.

School aged students attend school daily from 9:00am – 3:00pm. Pre-school students attend from 9.30-2.30. Uniforms are not compulsory but for families who would like to purchase them they are available through the school. The purchase form is available on the website under ‘Forms’.



Seth Willingham

The school is staffed by highly qualified, experienced and nurturing teaching staff supported by a well-appointed multi-disciplinary team. We are dedicated to students receiving the very best education they can to take into their adult lives. There are 10 classes with teachers and education support staff comprising of aids and therapists. Specialist’s include art, music, physical education and creative movement.  A Family Support Coordinator provides practical advice to families about resources available through external agencies, respite, holiday programs and wellbeing.

Community Involvement

Burwood East SDS promotes and presents a positive community connection that encourages parent and community involvement. Participation in social activities, celebration of student achievement and special events are valued and encouraged.  Information sessions are held regularly such as signing workshops and sleeping advice.

We have excellent relationships with the Department of Human and Health Services, service clubs, sporting associations and charitable bodies who generously support the school to help us provide improved learning outcomes for all of our students. This is particularly important for purchasing the specialised and modified equipment that our students require to learn and be safe.

Our facilities are used out of school hours by some community groups for special events. This creates strong links between our school and the local community and informs people about the service that we provide.



Burwood East SDS is located in the eastern Melbourne suburb of Burwood and provides an attractive and secure environment, with extensive fenced recreation areas which include landscaped courtyards, shaded areas, a bicycle and walking track, adventure playgrounds, an in-ground trampoline, a sensory garden and tranquil garden. Classrooms are spacious, bright, stimulating and well equipped. Additional facilities include a multi-sensory room, multipurpose room, home-crafts centre and library.

Transport Zone

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