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The Cheshire School

the cheshire school

The Cheshire School is a Primary School for children with significant social, emotional and behavioural problems.

The Cheshire School is one of the programs of bestchance Child Family Care, a not-for-profit organisation which has been providing support to children and families since 1895.

“I will forever be grateful that the Cheshire program has given Raphael another chance at being the boy he really wants to be and not the one everyone presumed he was.”

Helping children to make positive changes

Through a partnership between The Cheshire School and home, students and their families are empowered to make positive changes, this will enable them to successfully return to a mainstream educational setting.

Students with social, emotional and behavioural difficulties

Not all students successfully manage the transition to school, some students have difficulty coping in mainstream primary school settings. Many suffer anxieties and challenges that prevent them from integrating well, this may lead to these students misjudging social context and experiencing significant day to day stress.

Standard school management procedures do not always suit the student, nor resolve the cause of underlying behaviours. Problems can become exacerbated resulting in confusion, a sense of isolation and despair.

The Cheshire School provides a minimum 18 month intervention program (longer if required) to support children from Foundation through to Grade Four, who have demonstrated significant social, emotional and behavioural problems in their mainstream schools. In a supportive and caring environment, Cheshire helps students and families to identify the fundamental causes of a child’s issues. By collaborating with the children and their families, The Cheshire School helps students to overcome the disruptive behaviours that may have become part of everyday life.

The Cheshire Program develops self-esteem, resilience and coping strategies, as well as facilitating a change in behaviours. This allows students to successfully re-integrate into the mainstream school system, equipped with strategies to cope with the challenges ahead.

2019 Term Dates

2020 Term Dates

Annual Report

The Cheshire school is a registered Specialist School with the Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority.

All enquiries are welcome and should be directed to The Cheshire School Intake Team on 8562 5167.

The Cheshire School relies on community donations and philanthropic funding to undertake our work. For further information please visit our donation page.


  • “Thank you Cheshire for changing my whole entire life”

    Cheshire School Student
  • We have been a family of the Cheshire school for the last 2 years. It has been a complete life change and words can not explain how grateful and happy we are with the brilliant teachers, staff, program and the support and dedication given to our son and our family. Can not rate our experience highly enough!

    Cheshire School Parent
  • What a difference 9 months at the Cheshire school has made!! He has now made the transition back to our mainstream school. Now in Year 2, he is able to manage himself in the classroom and in the playground. He is able to sit with his peers on the floor and at his table and he listens and works independently. He communicates his needs to me and asks for help. He interacts and plays with his peers and knows he needs to use eye contact. Henry puts his hand up and takes turns to answer questions and to contribute to class discussions.

    Just recently Henry role played and shared his learning on how to make friends:
    ”You need to start a conversation”
    ”You need an icebreaker to start”
    It was brilliant!


    Cheshire School Teacher Year 2 Classroom Teacher (Carwatha College P-12, Noble Park, 2015)
  • The Cheshire Program has been a life line for David and my family – your commitment to us has been overwhelming and to see the positive changes in David in a year has been wonderful.

    Cheshire School Parent
  • The Cheshire program has been a wonderful start to introducing Jeffrey to the school system in a small, safe and positive environment. Cheshire has established the foundations for Jeffrey to continue to learn and thrive in an environment usually confronting and overwhelming to him. It has also taught him HE CAN DO IT!! There should be more programs like this out there in the community

    Cheshire School Parent
  • After having been asked to leave 3 schools due to behavioural issues by the time our son was in Grade 1, we were desperate for help – both for him and us! After Flynn started at Cheshire, the relief was immediate, for all concerned. Not to be labelled, him as the naughty child and us as those parents with the naughty child, was perhaps the best aspect. His time at Cheshire taught him to interact effectively with his peers and teachers, whilst giving him flexibility to deal with his issues in a controlled and supportive environment.

    After 5 successful terms, (not without its ups and downs), it was time for him to graduate. We were very apprehensive about Flynn transitioning into mainstream school, and while it has not gone without issues, he is now at a school willing to help and see him through primary school. We are and always will be so grateful to the wonderful support both for us and Flynn which we received from Cheshire, particularly at a time when we were at our wits end.

    He had a fantastic teacher in that of Jenn, who was a proverbial life saver, as we felt so isolated and were beginning to think that there was no help for us, as we had sourced help from different avenues, but seemingly to no avail.

    Flynn’s feedback on his time at Cheshire was “One of the best schools I’ve been to. Teachers are great, but Jenn was very special and helped me so much. There was only one bad thing which is you only get to stay there for one year

    Cheshire School Parent Feedback from Flynn and his mum
  • Cheshire was a saviour for our Grandson. He was a little boy “lost” suffered from anxiety, very aggressive, and if he had been forced to go through main stream school it would have turned out disastrous. We read about Cheshire & decided that this school was his chance.

    The teachers were amazing. They gave him encouragement, confidence, reassurance, they were very supportive & understanding for our grandson & ourselves. He learnt how to control his temper and loved the martial arts which he has continued with. He has now settled into main stream school and doing very well. We are very grateful for the staff at Cheshire to be a part of guiding our grandson on the right path.

    Cheshire School Parent Marilyn & Stephen Scammell
  • I would sit under the table and not do my work. I would sulk and not look at people. I did not have friends. Now I work and look at people when I talk and I have friends. I am happy now. I will keep doing my work at my new school and make lots of friends.

    Cheshire School Student Grade 2 boy, aged 7
  • Before I came to Cheshire I never got my work finished. I couldn’t control my anger and I started every fight in school.
    Now I can control my anger and I have never missed an excursion. I like all the fun stuff like gym, circus, swimming and the dinner. I have made two good friends, Jack and Jules. I wouldn’t have achieved this thanks to Karen and Lisa. Thanks to my mum for letting me come to this school now I know I can make friends and control my anger

    Cheshire School Student Grade 4 boy, aged 10
  • I will forever be grateful that the Cheshire program has given Raphael another chance at being the boy he really wants to be and not the one everyone presumed he was.

    Cheshire School Student