Student Mentoring Program

A total of $1M is available from Student Mentoring Program to develop new or expand existing mentoring programs for students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Student Mentoring Program

Student Mentoring Program

The Student Mentoring Program focuses on supporting disadvantaged children and young people maintain their engagement with education or training.



The Victorian Government is committed to Victoria being the Education State – where a young person’s ability to succeed in education is not determined by their socio-economic status, background or geographic location.

As part of the work to achieve this vision, grants will be awarded over 2018 and 2019 to organisations and schools to develop new or expand existing mentoring programs for students from disadvantaged backgrounds.



The Student Mentoring Program aims to promote school connectedness, engagement and aspirations for disadvantaged children and young people. Through the grants, mentors will work with children and young people to increase their engagement in learning, build self-confidence, set goals and improve understanding of post-school options.



A total of $1 million over two years is available for grants in this funding round.

Applicants can apply for any amount of funding to support the type of program they wish to offer. However, the Department of Education and Training (the Department) reserves the right to offer a lower amount of funding than requested to align available budget with applications received.


Eligible Projects

The Student Mentoring Program will support mentoring programs that focus on:

  • Transition and engagement: the mentoring program focuses on the mentee’s capacity to successfully move through key transition points: primary school to secondary school; secondary school to post-compulsory education, training or employment
  • Participation: the mentoring program supports students in maintaining engagement with schooling and curriculum through mentor support, tutoring and pathway planning or exploration.

Preference will be given to applications that support vulnerable cohorts such as Indigenous students, students  in out-of-home-care or from a low-SES background, students from culturally and linguistic diverse backgrounds, and students living in rural/remote areas.

For schools, preference will be given to applicants that partner with an organisation with proven expertise in implementing youth mentoring programs.


Eligible Applicants

Grants will be awarded to organisations and schools. The grants will support new and expand existing mentoring programs for disadvantaged children and young people.

The grants program is open to any government school or community service organisation in Victoria. Funding will be provided to organisations that provide or propose to develop a mentoring program for disadvantaged young people with the aim of improving educational engagement and attainment.



Applications close 9 November 2017.


More Information


Media Release

More young people will be encouraged to remain engaged in education or training through an expansion of the successful Student Mentoring Program.

Minister for Education James Merlino and Parliamentary Secretary for Education Judith Graley officially launched round two of the program today – with applications for 2018 and 2019 now open.

They have called for organisations and schools to develop new or continue existing mentoring programs for children and young people at risk of disengaging from their schooling or training.

The grants will support young people to maintain their participation and interest, particularly at key transition points such as between primary school and secondary school.

A key focus will be on supporting Indigenous students, students in out-of-home care, or those from low socio-economic or culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Research shows youth mentoring can help students achieve their full potential and the program has been proven to have enhanced student optimism, confidence and resilience and built strong pathways to further learning and employment.

For example, a Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency program for children living away from home reported that a young mentee who had been at risk of dropping out of school early was now planning on continuing his education after being inspired by his mentor’s career as a paramedic.

The Student Mentoring Program is a key component of the Labor Government’s ambitious Education State target of having more happy, healthy and resilient kids.

The program is also a vital cog in breaking the link between disadvantage and student achievement. The target is to halve the proportion of students who leave education during years nine to 12 by 2025.

Grant applications close on 15 November, more information can be found at:

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