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What is Innovative Solutions Support

Innovative Solutions Support is one stream of funding available to eligible early childhood education and care services through the Inclusion Development Fund (IDF). It provides funding for flexible and tailored inclusion support that goes beyond the scope of support that can be provided by Inclusion Agencies..

Unlike the other IDF funding streams (Additional Educator, Immediate/Time Limited and Family Day Care Top Up), Innovative Solutions Support projects do not provide support in the form of an additional educator (or, in the case of Family Day Care Top Up, a top up payment). Innovative Solutions Support enables services to implement other solutions to their barriers to inclusion and develop a service’s capacity and capability to include children with additional needs.

Innovative Solutions Support Projects are individualised and are developed on a case-by-case basis in response to the specific inclusion barriers identified by a service.

Projects typically involve the engagement of an external provider who has relevant skills, experience and qualifications in relation to the identified inclusion barriers and is able to support the development of the service’s inclusion capacity.

Identifying barriers to inclusion and designing an Innovative Solutions Support Project

Innovative Solutions Support Projects are most effective when the relevant barriers to inclusion are clearly identified and the proposed solutions and outcomes are clearly aligned to, and flow from, these barriers. The following process will support the development of an effective Project Plan.

Innovative Solutions Support Projects cannot be used for:

  • Purchasing specialist equipment or resources
  • Medical and therapeutic interventions
  • Settlement services for migrants
  • Support more appropriately funded through an alternative IDF stream
  • Support more appropriately funded by the State/Territory or the Australian Government or other agencies or programs

Application Process Pilot

From June -December 2023, the IDF will be piloting a new application process for Innovative Solutions Support. This will make it easier and faster to apply and ensure applications can be processed more quickly and efficiently.

One of the key changes is the introduction of project types. Information about these project types can be accessed below.

Additional Information for Services


Services work with their Inclusion Professional to develop a project proposal.

Applying in the funding page for each funding type


Processes for payment and expenditure for Innovative Solutions support funding claims.

Claiming in the funding page for each funding type


Services must report any changes to the approved project.

Change in the funding page for each funding type