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Rural and Remote Education Inquiry Briefing Paper

Rural and Remote

Education Inquiry Briefing Paper

D. Commonwealth,

State and Territory policies and programs

D1 National

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education Policy


of Aboriginal people in educational decision-making

Goal 1 To

establish effective arrangements for the participation of Aboriginal parents

and community members in decisions regarding the planning, delivery and

evaluation of pre-school, primary and secondary education services for

their children.

Goal 2 To

increase the number of Aboriginal people employed as educational administrators,

teachers, curriculum advisers, teachers assistants, home-school liaison

officers and other education workers, including community people engaged

in teaching of Aboriginal culture, history and contemporary society, and

Aboriginal languages.

Goal 3 To

establish effective arrangements for the participation of Aboriginal students

and community members in decisions regarding the planning, delivery and

evaluation of post-school education services, including technical and

further education colleges and higher education institutions.

Goal 4 To

increase the number of Aboriginal people employed as administrators, teachers,

researchers and student services officers in technical and further education

colleges and higher education institutions.

Goal 5 To

provide education and training services to develop the skills of Aboriginal

people to participate in educational decision-making.

Goal 6 To

develop arrangements for the provision of independent advice for Aboriginal

communities regarding educational decisions at regional, State, Territory

and National levels.

Equality of

access to educational services

Goal 7 To

ensure that Aboriginal children of pre-primary school age have access

to pre-school services on a basis comparable to that available to other

Australian children of the same age.

Goal 8 To

ensure that all Aboriginal children have local access to primary and secondary


Goal 9 To

ensure equitable access for Aboriginal people to post-compulsory secondary

schooling, to technical and further education, and higher education.

Equity of educational


Goal 10 To

achieve the participation of Aboriginal children in pre-school education

for a period similar to that for all Australian children.

Goal 11 To

achieve the participation of all Aboriginal children in compulsory schooling.

Goal 12 To

achieve the participation of Aboriginal people in post-compulsory secondary

education, in technical and further education, and in higher education,

at rates commensurate with those of all Australians in those sectors.

Equitable and

appropriate educational outcomes

Goal 13 To

provide adequate preparation of Aboriginal children through pre-school

education for the schooling years ahead.

Goal 14 To

enable Aboriginal attainment of skills to the same standard as other Australian

students throughout the compulsory schooling years.

Goal 15 To

enable Aboriginal students to attain the successful completion of Year

12 or equivalent at the same rates as for other Australian students.

Goal 16 To

enable Aboriginal students to attain the same graduation rates from award

courses in technical and further education, and in higher education, as

for other Australians.

Goal 17 To

develop programs to support the maintenance and continued use of Aboriginal


Goal 18 To

provide community education services which enable Aboriginal people to

develop the skills to manage the development of their communities.

Goal 19 To

enable the attainment of proficiency in English language and numeracy

competencies by Aboriginal adults with limited or no educational experience.

Goal 20 To

enable Aboriginal students at all levels of education to have an appreciation

of their history, cultures and identity.

Goal 21 To

provide all Australian students with an understanding of and respect for

Aboriginal traditional and contemporary cultures.

One context for the

Indigenous Education Policy is the Adelaide Declaration on National Goals

for Schooling in the 21st Century. All States and Territories adhere to

both Policy and Declaration.

The new

goals [Adelaide Declaration, 1999] require that schooling should be socially

just, so that [among other things]:

  • students' outcomes

    from schooling are free from the effects of negative discrimination

    based on sex, language, culture and ethnicity, religion or disability,

    and of differences arising from students' socio-economic background

    or geographic location;

  • Aboriginal and

    Torres Strait Islander students have equitable access to, and opportunities

    in, schooling so that their learning outcomes improve and, over time,

    match those of other students;

  • all students

    understand and acknowledge the value of Aboriginal and Torres Strait

    Islander cultures to Australian society and possess the knowledge,

    skills and understanding to contribute to and benefit from, reconciliation

    between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians (DETYA submission,

    page 10).


D2 Commonwealth

funding programs

Commonwealth funding

programs for Indigenous education are detailed in the DETYA



Indigenous Education Strategic Initiatives Program (IESIP)

Information about

IESIP is drawn from the DETYA submission pages 46-47 and Schedule 9 and

from the evidence of Peter Buckskin, Assistant Secretary, Indigenous Education,

DETYA, at the Canberra hearing on 26 October 1999.

IESIP is a funding

program controlled by legislation.The objects of the Indigenous

Education (Supplementary Assistance) Act 1989 (Cth) are

  • to increase the

    participation of Indigenous people in education decision-making (section


  • to ensure equal

    education access for Indigenous people (section 5)

  • to ensure equity

    of participation in education for Indigenous people (section 6)

  • to achieve equitable

    and appropriate educational outcomes for Indigenous people (section


  • to encourage the

    development of education services that are culturally appropriate for

    Indigenous people (section 7A).

Funding is provided

direct to education and training providers in the preschool, school and

VET sectors under three elements: Supplementary Recurrent Assistance (SRA);

Transitional Project Assistance (TPA); and Strategic Results Projects

(SRP). SRA is allocated on a per capita basis. Numbers are calculated

annually and there is a loading for geographically remote education providers.

Remaining IESIP budget is allocated to TPA and SRP.

In 1999-2000 the

total IESIP budget is $127.5 million.


Education Agreements between the Commonwealth and recipients of IESIP

funding include performance indicators and annual targets addressing performance

in each of eight areas identified by MCEETYA in 1995 as national priorities

in achieving improved educational outcomes for Indigenous Australians.

These eight areas are:

  • improve literacy


  • improve numeracy


  • increase Indigenous

    employment in education and training;

  • improve educational


  • increase Indigenous


  • increase involvement

    of Indigenous parents and community members in educational decision-making;

  • increase professional

    development of staff involved in Indigenous education; and

  • expand culturally-inclusive

    curricula (DETYA submission, Schedule 9).

An evaluation of IESIP

can be perused at DETYA submission

Schedule 6.


Indigenous Education Direct Assistance (IEDA)

Information about

IEDA is drawn from the DETYA submission pages 44-45 and from the evidence

of Peter Buckskin, Assistant Secretary, Indigenous Education, DETYA, at

the inquiry's Canberra hearing on 26 October 1999.

IEDA has three components:

  1. Aboriginal Tutorial

    Assistance Scheme (ATAS)

  2. Vocational and

    Education Guidance for Aboriginals Scheme (VEGAS)

  3. Aboriginal Student

    Support and Parent Awareness Programme (ASSPA).

The IEDA budget was

$60.2 million in 1998-99 and $62.2 million in 1999-2000.


In a total ATAS expenditure

of $36.3m for 1998, an estimated $9.5m (26.2%) was provided for remote

students and $26.8m for non-remote students (DETYA submission, page


ATAS was both commended

and criticised at a public meeting in Bairnsdale Victoria.

On a positive

note, the Aboriginal Tutorial Assistance Scheme is really working. Students

who have even been assessed as disabled, with one-on-one tutorials they

come up to the average level for their age group whereas previously they

could have been several years behind (Bairnsdale Vic public meeting,

11 November 1999).

There was some

criticism, however, of the fact that ATAS funding can only be used before

or after school or in free study periods for VCE students (Bairnsdale

Vic public meeting, 11 November 1999).


There were over 700

VEGAS projects funded in 1998 for a total expenditure in 1998 of $9.5m.

An estimated $3.7m (38.9%) was provided for remote students and $5.8m

for non-remote students (DETYA submission, page 45).


Around 3,800 committees

were funded under ASSPA in 1998. In 1998, 44,485 remote Indigenous preschool,

primary and secondary school students (42.2%) and 60,841 non-remote (including

some rural) Indigenous preschool, primary and secondary school students

participated in ASSPA. Expenditure for 1998 was $17.7m - $9.9m (55.9%)

for remote students and $7.8m for non-remote students (DETYA submission,

page 45).


was actually evaluated in 97-98, an internal evaluation by the then DEETYA.

Really the findings were that it's probably one of the most successful

programs, with the aim to increase parent participation in the schools;

at school level it was certainly very, very successful. But it has a whole

range of other outcomes or goals as well, or objectives, and that clearly

is also an increased student awareness and student participation as well

. Unfortunately their involvement in, say, from being in an ASSPA community,

onto the school council, to the school board - that transition into that

was one of the aims, to get them into mainstream decision-making in the

school -that hasn't happened at a rate that we'd like it to happen (Peter

Buckskin, DETYA, Canberra hearing, 26 October 1999).




[English as a Second Language - Indigenous Language Speaking Students]

Programme commenced in 1998 and assists Indigenous students commencing

mainstream schooling to function at the most basic level in the classroom

in English and participate in a meaningful way in classroom activities.

The programme is tightly targeted to those students who have very limited

exposure to, or use of, English in their communities and will be required

to use the English language for the first time in a sustained manner.

Each eligible student attracts a once only payment of $3079. Funds are

provided to the education authority responsible for the student's schooling.

Funds are available for a wide range of development and support strategies

which contribute to the student's ESL tuition.

In 1998, 2,398

Indigenous students were assisted under the ESL-ILSS programme to a

value of $7.3 million. Of these, 44 percent were located in Western

Australia, 33 percent in the Northern Territory, 14.5 percent in Queensland,

seven percent in South Australia and 1.5 percent in New South Wales.

The majority of the students were located in the public sector (89.5

percent), followed by the Catholic (6.5 percent) and the independent

(4 percent) sectors (DETYA submission, page 46).



[T]he national

project on racism in schools, which is tentatively titled 'Racism, No

Way', is being actually run by New South Wales . It's looking to develop

anti-racism educational materials for all schools right across Australia.

Thus far we've produced the core booklet that will go to every school

in Australia. We've just become the largest partner in the Commonwealth's

Living in Harmony anti-racism initiative, and, through Living in Harmony,

are sponsoring a Web site that will be available to all schools and provide

extensive information about racism as an issue, ideas for classroom practises

in anti-racism and will link schools so that schools can open up a dialogue

about how they're dealing with racism issues (George Green, NSW Department

of Education and Training, Sydney hearing, 22 October 1999).



The following strategies

will be pursued by the MCEETYA Taskforce on Indigenous Education appointed

April 1999.

To help

improve literacy and numeracy levels of Indigenous students, the Commonwealth

will provide funding of up to $13 million over 2000-2004 under a National

Indigenous English Literacy and Numeracy Strategy. The Strategy will bring

together the best practice models, teaching methods and the successful

conclusions drawn from the Strategic Results Projects for use in areas

of priority need, particularly in rural and remote areas.

In addition, the

Commonwealth will support a National Indigenous Students' School Attendance

Strategy to pilot successful practices and is prepared to make available

up to $14 million over the 2000 to 2004 period for this purpose. Projects

will target areas where Indigenous attendance levels are lowest, often

in rural and isolated areas (DETYA submission, page 49).





The detail of programs

for Indigenous students in government schools in NSW can be found in the

NSW Department of Education and Training


The central

theme of the Aboriginal Education Policy is the promotion of educational

achievements by Aboriginal students in the context of educating all students

about Aboriginal Australia. It reflects the views and values of Aboriginal

people on education. The policy statement provides a comprehensive set

of outcomes, as well as performance strategies to guide all department

staff, schools, students and their communities in achieving the overall

goals for Aboriginal education.

The policy has

three focus areas:

  • Aboriginal

    Students: Improved educational outcomes through challenging and

    culturally appropriate curriculum, teaching and assessment.

  • Aboriginal

    Communities: Aboriginal communities and the department will become

    partners in the whole education process.

  • All staff

    - all students - all schools: All staff and students will have

    knowledge and understanding of and respect for Aboriginal Australia.

The participation

of Aboriginal community members in all stages of the implementation strategy

and the subsequent design, writing, delivery and evaluation of Aboriginal

studies and perspective programs in schools is encouraged. Aboriginal

people assist training and development courses with their skills and expertise

(NSW Department of Education and Training submission,

page 44).

The NSW Department

of Education and Training informed the inquiry that "the major objective

[of its programs for Aboriginal students] is for theirr educational outcomes

in pre-schools to Year 12 to be enhanced by improving their levels of

literacy and numeracy so that they are comparable with those of the rest

of the student population across the State (NSW Department of Education

and Training submission. page

44 or 45)

The New

South Wales Department of Education and Training won a Human Rights Commission

corporate award in 1995 for the Whole School Anti-Racism Project, which

has now been implemented in many schools across New South Wales and in

fact has been adopted by schools in other states. We have very strongly

worded anti-racism agreements procedures that were published in 1992,

and they're currently being revised (George Green, NSW Department of

Education and Training, Sydney hearing, 22 October 1999).


IESIP projects


Results Projects are funded by the Commonwealth Government and directed

at Indigenous youth in rural and remote communities. They aim at demonstrating

ways in which Indigenous learning outcomes can be improved in a short

period of time through concerted efforts. The NSW initiatives cover the

following areas:

  • Transition from

    home to school

  • Literacy support

    in Years 4-6 and preparation for transition to secondary school

  • Technology and

    literacy support

  • Reading Recovery

    in Aboriginal communities

  • Support in juvenile

    justice institutions

  • Tracking the

    mobility rates of Aboriginal students to target and assist with literacy

    and numeracy support

  • Supporting vocational

    learning in secondary schools Retention of "at risk" Indigenous students

    (NSW Department of Education and Training submission,

    page 45 or 46).

Vocational education

and training

NSW emphasises enhancing

the employment prospects of Indigenous students.

The expansion

of vocational education and training in schools is also potentially a

very powerful retention strategy, as is the provision of relevant curriculum

. At the moment, we're having discussions with our own people internally

about vocational education and training for Aboriginal students before

Year 11. Clearly, if we have a problem with Aboriginal students disengaging

with schools in Year 9 or 10, putting in good Voc. Ed. programs in Year

11 is not going to be a terribly effective strategy; so we're looking

at ways of providing vocationally related and more practical courses for

those students - not just Aboriginal students, for a whole range of students

- in the early secondary years (George Green, NSW Department of Education

and Training, Sydney hearing, 22 October 1999).

Vocational learning

initiatives for Aboriginal students are funded by the Indigenous Education

Strategic Initiatives Program (IESIP) in a number of areas across the

state. For example, five schools (Wilcannia Central, Bourke High, Brewarrina

Central, Coomealla High, Narromine High) and one cluster of schools

(the Dubbo City Mentor Project) have been funded to offer programs during

1999 which will improve the vocational learning opportunities for Aboriginal


The Job Placement

Employment and Training Program (JPET) enables Aboriginal students,

at Lake Cargelligo and Condobolin in particular, to access a number

of TAFE courses delivered locally reducing the needs for students to

have to travel to TAFE.

In the year 2000

a new HSC will be introduced as a result of a review commissioned by

the government in 1995. The White paper, Securing Their Future, recommended

the strengthening of VET as part of the HSC and that VET should become

an integral part of the curriculum for all students regardless of their

intended post-school destination (NSW Department of Education and

Training submission, page 29).

Mobility tracking

High mobility of

Indigenous children and families is also being addressed.

We've known

anecdotally that Aboriginal families tend to move their children because

of the extended family arrangements. Children tend to change their place

of residence and therefore their schools quite frequently. But one of

the IESIP programs that we've been running, one of the Commonwealth-funded

programs on mobility tracking, has produced results that indicate that

that factor is probably a more significant one than we had thought, but

at the same time that project is also developing ways in which we can

mitigate the effects of mobility on Aboriginal students by developing

ways of using technology to provide very rapid information to the new

school when the child changes school, so that we don't get the timelag

we've had between when the child leaves one school, arrives at the next

school and the teachers get to know the child and their learning needs.

That could be a lag of another few weeks until that happens.

Under this system,

the information is transmitted to the receiving school very quickly.

It can also help the home school liaison officers to make contact with

families in order to ensure that the child comes to school quickly after

the move, rather than has a settling-in period at home before coming

back to school (George Green, NSW Department of Education and Training,

Sydney hearing, 22 October 1999).


Indigenous educators

Indigenous educators

in the NSW government school system are

  • Aboriginal

    Education Resource Teachers support individual students under the

    Aboriginal Early Language Development Program. There are currently 22

    in rural schools and five of these are Aboriginal teachers.

  • Aboriginal

    Education Assistants (AEAs) provide a range of education support

    and liaison activities within schools, pre-schools and juvenile justice

    institution schools. They are allocated on a per capita needs basis.

    This program was expanded in 1998-99 with an additional 82 positions

    established. An AEA is appointed when the school's enrolment of Aboriginal

    students is 30, identified for two consecutive years at the August census.

    When the number reaches 80, the school is entitled to two AEAs. An AEA

    is appointed to each juvenile justice detention centre. Where the school

    is isolated or where the school population is 100% Aboriginal, allocation

    of an AEA is made on special needs basis. There are currently 244 AEAs

    in rural and remote areas.

  • Aboriginal

    Community Liaison Officers (ACLOs) develop links between schools,

    communities and Aboriginal students and their families. Twenty-two ACLOs

    work in districts servicing rural communities.

  • Aboriginal

    Education Consultants (AECs) provide support and advice about education

    programs. Ten consultants are employed across the state and seven, all

    of whom are Aboriginal, are located in a district in a rural or remote


  • Aboriginal

    Student Liaison Officers work on a range of student welfare issues

    as they relate to school attendance and the following up of sustained

    absences. Eight of the eleven positions are in rural areas.

  • District Support

    Leaders were trained in August 1998 to support AECs and ACLOs in

    the presentation of training and development courses. Currently 67 have

    been trained for this important role.


    Aboriginal Advisory Committees assist in the allocation process

    of Targeted Literacy Projects and the Attention, Retention and Intervention

    Program funding to schools (NSW Department of Education and Training

    submission, page 47 or 48).

    Home School

    Liaison Officers and Aboriginal Student Liaison Officers are allocated

    to districts on the basis of levels of absenteeism. Districts in geographically

    isolated areas receive an additional allocation due to the distances

    officers are required to travel. 36.5 (44%) of home school liaison

    officer positions are located in rural districts, compared to 35%

    of student enrolment K-9. Nine of the 12 Aboriginal Student Liaison

    Officers are based in rural districts ...

    Aboriginal Programs

    Unit has provided five rural districts with funds totalling $50 000

    to support Aboriginal communities to establish regular patterns of

    school attendance among students in the early years of school (K-1).

    A temporary Aboriginal Student Liaison Officer position was created

    in Walgett from funds provided by the Behaviour and Attendance Unit.

    The position was created to address specific attendance issues in

    the district (NSW Department of Education and Training submission,

    page 39).

The inquiry heard

criticism of the level of Indigenous staffing in NSW.

I think

in a number of areas, quite frankly, the Department and the government

pay lip service to certain areas and I think Aboriginal education is a

classic example. Every district has a certain consultant for this and

a consultant for that, or in some cases there's a consultant for 2 districts.

The Aboriginal consultants have to work over 4 districts, 4 districts.

That's, in most cases, 160 schools, 40 schools in each district. That's

just outrageous. Aboriginal education is meant to be part of the overall

curriculum of every school in New South Wales, you know, supposed to try

and cover all of those sorts of things. Those people - it's tokenism,

it's lip service, as far as I'm concerned (John Irving, NSW Teachers'

Federation, Sydney hearing, 22 October 1999).

In the Catholic school


The placement

of Aboriginal Education Workers (AEWs) in a school is determined by a

combination of the following factors:

  • significant

    numbers of Indigenous students enrolled;

  • educational

    needs of the Indigenous students enrolled; and

  • locality of

    the school/isolation factors (Canberra-Goulburn Catholic Education

    Office submission, page 2).


Aboriginal cultural studies

General awareness

The 1998

annual school reports contained information about the ways that schools

across the State had implemented the Aboriginal Education Policy. The

findings show that schools are actively involved in raising awareness

of Aboriginal culture and history and in involving the Aboriginal community

in school community activities. There is evidence from the reports that

schools are aware of the Aboriginal Education Policy and the need for

policy implementation. Implementation strategies include training and

development to raise teacher awareness and skills in the area of Aboriginal

education. Schools are also building up resources to support Aboriginal

education programs.

The findings show

that the initiatives used by schools to improve the learning outcomes

of Aboriginal students included literacy programs, homework centres,

Aboriginal Education Assistants to support individual students, and

individual learning programs. Around half of the schools reported integrating

an Aboriginal perspective across the curriculum and mentioned using

Aboriginal community members as role models or guests to present aspects

of Aboriginal culture and heritage such as dance, art, drama, storytelling,

language and history (NSW Department of Education and Training submission,

page 48).

Aboriginal Studies

in the curriculum

You asked

whether Aboriginal Studies was compulsory in any year anywhere. The Aboriginal

Studies syllabus itself, like most other syllabi, is not compulsory. However,

there are mandatory sections on Aboriginal Studies in other syllabuses,

namely history and geography, Year 7 to 10 syllabuses; and the new primary

human society and its environment syllabus also has mandatory Aboriginal

education components (George Green, NSW Department of Education and

Training, Sydney hearing, 22 October 1999).

We've put a particular

program into Walgett which is the Walgett Community of Schools Program,

which carries with it quite considerable additional funding. What we

want to see happen there is the development of programs on Aboriginal

culture, Aboriginal history, delivered to all students in Walgett (John

Sutton, NSW Department of Education and Training, Sydney hearing, 22

October 1999).


Language programs

NSW has an Aboriginal

Literacy Strategy but no details were provided as to its contents or underlying

assumptions. The inquiry received criticism of the State's failure to

recognise Aboriginal English.

There is

lack of support for Aboriginal English. While it's fairly mandatory in

the Aboriginal education policy, in reality, it doesn't transfer itself

in terms of reality for kids; so it's not being embellished and appreciated.

Obviously, there needs to be more resources in terms of Aboriginal English

support and, more importantly, other language programs (Professor John

Lester, NSW Aboriginal Education Consultative Group, Sydney hearing, 22

October 1999).

However, Indigenous

languages are taught in some parts of NSW.

There are

currently 18 government schools running Aboriginal language programs across

the state, but predominantly in rural areas (George Green, NSW Department

of Education and Training, Sydney hearing, 22 October 1999).

... we're teaching

Murrawarri and Ngemba languages as a part of that LOTE program and we

also have a Year 9 and Year 10 Aboriginal studies class going. We tried

to offer Year 11 and Year 12 Aboriginal studies this year and we didn't

have any takers, but we'll work on them. We hope that gradually as students

go through they will pick that course.

The local people

help out and they try and get out into the environment once a fortnight

and I do feel that the students actually learn more by doing things

and seeing things so it is very much focused on that level. I would

say it is one of the most enjoyable subjects that they have experienced

. It came through a couple of years ago that the community really wanted

an Aboriginal language taught and they didn't want the children learning

German or Japanese or something like that (Ruythe Dufty, Principal,

Brewarrina Central School, Brewarrina hearing, 2 March 1999).


Bilingual education

Not available in




No particular problems

were raised which affect Indigenous students solely or primarily.


Other programs

Access to Distance


All Distance

Education Centres can enrol Aboriginal students. However, the new Open

Training and Education Network directorate's first enrolment census in

1996 revealed very low Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander enrolments.

Anecdotal evidence

suggested that distance education was not being accessed by Aboriginal

and Torres Strait Islander students because Aboriginal students generally

live in towns with locally available schools. Research conducted in

1998 through Sydney Distance Education Primary School found, however,

that many Aboriginal students who were eligible for enrolment were not

enrolling because their families did not know about the service or considered

that it would not meet their needs.

As a consequence

of the research, Sydney Distance Education Primary School has undertaken

major modifications to learning materials following extensive training

and development of teaching staff. Steps have been taken to attract

legitimate enrolments from the Aboriginal community within existing

categories of Distance Education. The school's publications have been

modified to show that the school is inclusive of Aboriginal people and

an Aboriginal perspective has been incorporated in learning materials.

Specific learning materials are being developed for Aboriginal students.

The research supports

the view that Aboriginal students require special support to complete

lessons satisfactorily. On enrolment, a suitable tutor needs to be identified.

Distance Education Centres on the north coast of NSW, at Port Macquarie

and Southern Cross, are negotiating new arrangements with Aboriginal

communities, successfully leading to enrolments of students who would

otherwise drop out of schooling. Amendment to the enrolment guidelines

has occurred to assist travelling Aboriginal families and enable lessons

to be received when they are visiting relatives, often for lengthy periods.

In the case of Sydney Distance Education Primary School, an Aboriginal

Community Liaison Officer has been employed to help teachers better

understand Aboriginal needs, and to bring management of the school's

resources closer to the expressed needs of Aboriginal communities (NSW

Department of Education and Training submission,

pages 51-52).

New staff induction

It's becoming

more and more the case now for young teachers going to work in those communities

to begin the week before school begins with a very concentrated introductory

program which brings them into the town, lets them get to know people

in the town, and goes through the issues of Aboriginal education, the

issues of teaching in Walgett, the issues of teaching in Brewarrina, and

gives them initial contact with the family groups and the leaders in the

communities (John Sutton, NSW Department of Education and Training,

Sydney haring, 22 October 1999).

The 2-day induction

by Aboriginal Education Assistants, Aboriginal teachers and elders conducted

this year for new teachers in the district was said to be very successful

(Moree NSW community meeting, 4 March 1999).

The government school

system's efforts, however, were criticised.

We then

come onto the teaching pedagogies and the difficulties there. Probably

one of the most significant parts is that it is still not compulsory for

teachers to do Aboriginal studies in their training. That's critical;

that needs to be done. For a single reason as being a taxpayer, if we

don't pick it up in preliminary training then we have to pick it up because

it's a compulsory component of the policy in terms of Aboriginal education.

As a taxpayer, we have to pick it up in staff development. Quite clearly,

teachers are underdone extremely with regard to understanding Indigenous

culture, understanding Indigenous kids and understanding the fundamentals

of what makes an Aboriginal community tick. That leads to all sorts of

difficulties (Professor John Lester, NSW Aboriginal Education Consultative

Group, Sydney hearing, 22 October 1999).

Professional development

in the Catholic schools system covers

1999 Indigenous

Education Team professional development programs for teachers of Indigenous

students and whole school staffs, through general staff meetings and through

developed courses, include:

  • 'Teaching Aboriginal

    Students' - a 3 day program on teaching and learning for Aboriginal

    students. The course contains a large Indigenous cultural component

    and focus on commonalities among Indigenous students so as to increase

    teacher understanding, skills and teaching methodology for the students.

  • 'Teaching the

    Teachers' - a 14 module staff meeting program to assist teachers to

    increase their knowledge base concerning Indigenous cultures, histories

    and issues and to provide strategies for teachers to incorporate this

    new learning into their classroom programs.

  • Assist schools

    in developing an inclusive curriculum which includes Indigenous Studies

    and Perspectives across all Key Learning Areas, K-12. Funding for

    Indigenous teaching and learning resources and materials is available

    to schools through this initiative (Canberra-Goulburn Catholic

    Education Office submission, page 4).

Indigenous pedagogy

There was

a question also about the teaching model imposed on Aboriginal children

which fails to take into account cultural differences. We've currently

trained 21,000 departmental staff since 1996 in the implementation of

the Aboriginal education policy. That includes a significant cultural

awareness component and sensitises teachers to the need to use culturally

appropriate practises in classrooms.

I did want to

mention, just in responding to that one, that many Aboriginal educators

across the country are very resistant to the notion of an Aboriginal

learning style, which was a very trendy notion of several years ago.

It has even been said to me that they see that as a form of institutionalised

racism that seeks to separate Aboriginal children and can therefore

work against them. Our aim is simply to provide the best possible education

for every student within the context that they're working. Clearly,

where we have large populations of Aboriginal children, we need to have

culturally appropriate practices in those schools (George Green,

NSW Department of Education and Training, Sydney hearing, 22 October


Otitis media

One program

related particularly to the needs of Aboriginal students, however, is

the Otitis Media program. Itinerant Teachers (Hearing) provide advice

and support to schools where there are numbers of Aboriginal students

with hearing loss resulting from Otitis Media (NSW Department of Education

and Training submission, page

46 or 47).

Parent and community



is a community based initiative implemented to address school attendance

issues in Bourke. Coordinated by the department, the initiative involves

government and non-government schools, Bourke Shire Council, the NSW Police

Service and other government agencies. 'Streetbeat' has improved school

attendance in Bourke by 60% and the program has been extended to schools

in Armidale, Taree and Moruya. The Walgett Community of Schools Project

has also resulted in improvement in school attendance (NSW Department

of Education and Training submission,

page 39).

. in a number

of country schools we have the school established as a Schools as Community

Centre Program with a facilitator who works with the community in providing

a range of programs and services. It's an inter-agency, whole government

and using non-government services as well. We have one at Coonamble

to which the Aboriginal community are very closely linked. An Aboriginal

playgroup operates at the centre and it has been linked also with some

literacy programs at the TAFE (NSW Department of Education and Training

submission, page 40).


Six pre-schools

have been established in rural Aboriginal communities offering programs

in literacy, numeracy and social development for the increasing numbers

of children attending. A review has established that the programs being

offered are effective. Evidence from the teachers in the primary schools

to which the pre-schools are attached is that the students who attended

pre-school were better prepared for school and attend more regularly than

those who do not have access to pre-school experience. Since the establishment

of these pre-schools, not only has the number of children attending increased

but also the number of Aboriginal parents involved. An additional pre-school

is planned to open at Walgett in Term 4, 1999 (NSW Department of Education

and Training submission, page


Parents as

Teachers program operates in the rural communities of Ballina, Moree,

Orange, Wagga Wagga. It is an early learning program for parents with

children up to 3 years of age. The program acknowledges the influence

of parents on the learning outcomes of children and the importance of

the early childhood years as a period of major development. Parenting

consultants support parents by making regular home visits, holding meetings

and distributing information on child development (NSW Department

of Education and Training submission,

page 40)

D4 Northern




In the past

20 plus years this Government has opened new remote schools and Home Land

Centre schools33; significantly refurbished and upgraded a

number of existing schools and is resourcing them at a level comparable

to urban schools - and, in many instances, even better.

In addition, staffing

levels in remote schools are greatly boosted through the Indigenous

Assistant Teacher Program at a cost to Government in the order of $7.5

million per annum.

The Department

of Education is the largest employer of Indigenous people in the Territory.

The NT Government currently commits $109 million, or 40 percent of the

Department's annual budget, to Indigenous education. This is supplemented

by additional funds from the Commonwealth to bring the total expenditure

to some $140 million (NT Education Minister, Statement to Parliament,

24 November 1999; click here

to view the full text of the Minister's statement).

Indigenous education

in the NT was reviewed during 1999 by former Territory Labor Senator Bob

Collins. Click here

to read his report Learning Lessons.


IESIP projects

No information provided

in the NT Department's preliminary submission or in evidence to the Inquiry.


Indigenous educators

The NT Department

of Education advised that three categories of Indigenous educators are

employed: Aboriginal Assistant Teachers, Aboriginal and Islander Education

Workers and Home Liaison Officers. Aboriginal Assistant Teachers "are

employed in all community schools" (NT Department of Education submission,

page 6).


Aboriginal cultural studies

No information provided

in the NT Department's preliminary submission or in evidence to the Inquiry.


Language teaching

The NT Department

of Education informed the inquiry that it provides "support for Aboriginal

language programs where requested by the local community" and employs

ESL [English as a Second Language] staff to support to teachers of Aboriginal

students (NT Department of Education submission, pages 6-7).


Bilingual education

... whether

we like it or not, and indeed the Collins Report reaffirms the fact, English

literacy, oracy and numeracy are essential for economic survival in today's

age. Developing these skills will give Aboriginal students options for

full participation in mainstream society. The option to stay and work

in their communities or, if they so chose, to move on to other places.

Aboriginal students deserve, and are entitled to, the same options as

other Australians. This government is committed to improving Indigenous

students educational outcomes in these key areas.

... for most Aboriginal

people living in remote communities English is a second language.

Our teaching programs

need to reflect the language requirements of Aboriginal students. This

means equipping our teachers as far as possible with the special skills

involved in ESL teaching (NT Education Minister, Statement

to Parliament, 24 November 1999).

The NT Government's

policy has been widely condemned.


Board strongly supports bilingual education programs and condemns the

Northern Territory Government's decision. The removal of the program is

considered by the ATSIC Board as a denial of the right of Aboriginal people

to equitable educational services and an attack on Aboriginal cultures.

By removing the

bilingual education program, the NT Government is contravening the Indigenous

Education Agreement entered into with the Commonwealth Government for

the third triennium from 1997-1999. Under this agreement, the NT government

has made a commitment to the progressive introduction of Indigenous

language teaching in more schools over the current triennium (ATSIC

submission, page 23).

It is difficult

to interpret the Territory's government decision, which is endorsed

by federal government, as anything but a direct attack on the relatively

few remaining strong indigenous languages and the human rights of their

ever-decreasing number of speakers. The decision will also mean job

losses for many of the dedicated bilingual education workers in remote

rural communities, the majority of whom are indigenous people. In turn,

this will translate into even higher levels of unemployment among rural

Australians (Christine Nicolls in a Radio National interview on 20

February 1999, quoted by Sister Anne Gardiner, Darwin hearing, 10 May




To enhance Indigenous

students' attendance the NT Minister for Education has announced a 'Self-Managing

Schools' program with pilots in selected remote communities.

The "Self-Managing

Schools" pilots would resource selected schools on the potential school-aged

population within a region.

Both the potential

enrolment catchment and attendance requirements would be carefully negotiated

with communities to ensure full local responsibility for attendance,

together with stringent learning targets.

The idea behind

the pilots, Mr Speaker, is to remove known impediments to effective

learning outcomes, aggregate available funding, attract the right personnel,

and enable local area school management the flexibility and autonomy

to deliver innovative educational programs.

The "Self-Managing

Schools" pilot program should:

  • Engage Indigenous

    people in greater responsibility for their children's attendance and


  • Trial a comprehensive

    attendance strategy and student tracking system for implementation

    in all NT schools ...; and

  • Develop a management

    system reporting educational outcomes. This would have broad application

    throughout Territory schools as the program is expanded ... (NT

    Education Minister, Statement

    to Parliament, 24 November 1999).


Other programs

The inquiry heard

that otitis media-induced deafness and other poor health-related learning

disabilities are endemic in the Territory.

... we will

require the Head Teacher or Principal in each community to meet regularly

with local health personnel to develop strategies that best suit the individual

circumstances of each community and to monitor and track the progress

of these measures. These new formalised arrangements will be in place

for the commencement of the new school year [2000].

A real benefit

of these measures will be the earlier detection of hearing and general

ear problems which are a key factor affecting Aboriginal children's

attentiveness and learning (NT Education Minister, Statement

to Parliament, 24 November 1999).

The inquiry heard

evidence that teachers are inadequately prepared to teach Indigenous students

(38% of all NT students).

[A] young

teacher who is in Port Keats and the real frustration and alienation that

she feels as a result of her work there. Pretty isolated and absolutely

no induction into what it would be like. Only one Professional Development

session to assist her to understand some issues around language and literacy

(Lynne Rolley, Independent Education Union, Melbourne hearing, 12 November


D5 Queensland



To be completed when

the Queensland Education Department submission is received.


IESIP projects

We have

the Indigenous Education Strategic Initiatives Program [IESIP], and for

that we have a total Education Queensland budget of $11 million. In rural

and remote communities, that services 6,247 children, and that's at a

budget of $2 million (Shane Williams, Education Queensland, Brisbane

hearing, 8 October 1999).

Finally, we also

have the Indigenous Language Speaking Students Initiative. That's part

of the English as a Second Language Initiative from the Commonwealth.

That's a specific one-off initiative, and the Education Queensland budget

for that is $777,600. We service 332 students, and those students are

located in the Cape and Gulf communities and the Torres Straits. That

specific initiative for Indigenous students is something that we're

working actively on, on a national task force, to include Aboriginal

and Torres Strait Islander speakers of second language as ESL students

under the Commonwealth definitions (Shane Williams, Education Queensland,

Brisbane hearing, 8 October 1999).


Indigenous educators

We have,

throughout Queensland, 10 officers who are strategically located and titled

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Participation Officers.

Four of these officers are located in rural and remote communities. These

officers identify Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community training

and development needs and coordinate the delivery of appropriate training

programs which aim to improve levels of participation of Indigenous people

in educational decision-making.

We also employ,

across Queensland, 77 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community

education counsellors. These are located in secondary schools with large

enrolments of Indigenous students. They provide the pastoral care to

support the social, cultural and educational needs of these children

(Shane Williams, Education Queensland, Brisbane hearing, 8 October


69 Aboriginal

and Torres Strait Islander people have successfully graduated from [RATEP

- primary teacher education] and are currently teaching within rural

and remote communities (Shane Williams, Education Queensland, Brisbane

hearing, 8 October 1999).

That number is 26%

of the Indigenous teachers in Queensland, according to David McSwan, James

Cook University (Brisbane hearing, 8 October 1999).



One of the

key elements of the policies is looking at second language pedagogy, as

well as cross-cultural pedagogy, because it was recognised throughout

the review that students who were perhaps attending school or not making

a decision to articulate on into the secondary arena felt that the programs

were not culturally inclusive. The department is responding through providing

a policy which will encourage teachers out there to undertake professional

development and training based on second language pedagogy and cross-cultural


Secondly, the

department is establishing a policy to establish compacts between school

communities and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cohort, and

so that particular policy is quite innovative, because you have a situation

where school principals will be sitting down with local Aboriginal and

Torres Strait Islander community members and discussing what they perceive

as the essential learnings that are required for them to translate from

school into vocational educational training or higher ed. That's quite

an innovative policy for Queensland.


We have, across

Queensland, a Reconciliation in Schooling project, which is primarily

curriculum resources that we've sent out to schools to encourage teachers

how to inform their offerings with issues regarding teaching to diversity,

teaching to - identifying that within this nation we have Aboriginal

communities and Torres Strait Islander communities, and to promote the

key strategic issues from the national reconciliation policy (Shane

Williams, Education Queensland, Brisbane hearing, 8 October 1999).

We have, in 1999,

commenced a literacy and numeracy action research project. This is resourced

at $3 million over the next three years, to improve literacy and numeracy

skills of students whose first language is not English, and Aboriginal

and Torres Strait Islander students. 20 schools have been identified

to participate in this project and 12 of these schools are located in

rural and remote communities. Some of these include Doomadgee, Lockhart

River, Arukun, Thursday Island, Badu Island, Bamaga, Woorabinda, Yarrabah

and Palm Island. The project recognises that isolation is a factor that

disadvantages students in terms of access to resources, professional

development of teachers and community support structures. Each participating

school in this action research project will be resourced with an additional

teacher with skills in second language learning, as well as literacy

and numeracy. An annual grant to cover professional development and

training, networking and the purchasing of support materials will be

resourced to the school (Shane Williams, Education Queensland, Brisbane

hearing, 8 October 1999).

D6 South


For full details

refer to the South Australian Government


See also South

Australia's Plan for Aboriginal Education.

Other strategies

in place to support Aboriginal students include:

  • Teaching and

    learning support to schools is available through Aboriginal Education

    Support Staff based in district offices

  • Aboriginal groups

    and communities providing integrated childcare and preschool service.

  • To inform and

    support Family Day Care Providers a training module addressing cultural

    awareness of Aboriginal people has been developed. This module is

    essential for registration as a Family Day Care Provider. Facilitator

    training has been completed and the module has been well received

    by participants.

Inclusive curriculum

and methodologies are supported through training and development for all

personnel. Training documents and courses include Teaching Aboriginal

Children and Students, Aboriginal Perspectives across the Curriculum,

Reconciliation, Countering Racism, and Aboriginal and Cultural Studies.

These documents and courses encourage educators to include for all children

and students a cultural perspective across current curriculum frameworks

(SA Government submission, page


The total number

of students studying a language other than English [including Ngarrindjeri,

Antikirinya, Arabana, Adnyamathanha, Wirangu and Pitjantjatjara] in

country districts is 30,320 (1998 figures) (SA Government submission,

page 16).


D7 Tasmania

Indigenous student

support programs in both the government and Catholic schools systems in

Tasmania focus on employment of Indigenous educators and advisers.

Each Department

of Education District has a Support Service which includes an Aboriginal

Education Officer ... They assist schools to implement pro-active programs

to improve numbers of students making successful transitions to senior

secondary college or to other post-school options. These include:

  • the Aboriginal

    Student Retention (ASRET) Program

  • the Vocational

    Education and Guidance for Aboriginal Students (VEGAS) Program (Tasmanian

    Government submission, pages 7-8).

In the Catholic system


for provision of Aboriginal Education Workers is a 'guideline' dependent

upon the number of Indigenous students with a minimum of 10 students.

Terms and conditions of employment for Aboriginal Education Workers is

as per the Catholic Education Award (1999) for Teacher Aides. They are

employed part time from between 5 to 15 hours per week. IESIP funds are

utilised and an aides work description is developed at the school level

(Tasmanian Catholic Education Commission

submission, page 18).

D8 Victoria




certainly a clear recognition and a clear desire for us to improve significantly

the performance of Koori students within Victorian schools and within

the Victorian community (Don Tyrer, Department of Education, Employment

and Training Victoria, Melbourne hearing, 12 November 1999).

The submission

from the Victorian Department of Education, Employment and Training pages

18-19 and pages 30-31 lists the major Indigenous student support programs

in the Victorian government school system.

Koorie Education


  • allocated to schools

    with a significant Indigenous student population

  • 13 of 16 Koorie

    Education Development Officer positions are allocated outside of Melbourne

  • provide support

    to Koorie students at the school and act as a liaison between the school

    and Koorie community

  • 47 of 56 Koorie

    Education positions are allocated outside of Melbourne.

Regional Koorie

Education Committees

  • constituted by

    Local Aboriginal Education Consultative Groups and the Department of


  • 7 of the 8 Committees

    are located outside of Melbourne

  • allocated funds

    to implement regional Koorie educaton programs

  • 83% of funds allocated

    to Regional Koorie Education Committees (ie $344,356 of $410,000) to

    non metropolitan locations.

Strategic Results


  • 13 of the 16 schools

    involved in the two projects (which focus on improved literacy outcomes

    for Koorie students using information technology) are located outside

    of Melbourne.

Koorie Open Door

Education (KODE) campuses

Three campuses have been established in Glenroy, Morwell and Mildura.

The campuses provide Koorie inclusive curriculum and programs for students.

Koorie Education

Development Unit (KEDU)

The KEDU comprises five central unit officers and sixteen outposted Koorie

Education Development Officers who provide policy, curriculum, professional

development and program advice relating to Koorie education.

Victorian Aboriginal

Education Association Incorporated (VAEAI)

The VAEAI are funded to provide advice relating Koorie education matters.

  Melbourne based Non Melbourne based
Koorie Education Workers 17%
(12 workers)

(60 workers)

Regional Koorie Education Committees 12.5%

(1 committee)


(7 committees)

Funds to Regional Koorie Education Committees

(Total of $410,000 allocated)

17% 83%
Schools involved in Strategic Result Project


(3 schools)


(13 schools)



You will

now find that at level 4, Year 6, students will come to an understanding

of an outcome about the history, about the relevance, about the development

of Koori culture and its relationship to current society. Then there are

indicators. There's an outcome like that and then there's a series of

indicators as to how a teacher would know whether or not the student has

developed that understanding. So we are focussing strongly in on that

area and the area of Australian history which incorporates that at all

levels (Don Tyrer, Department of Education, Employment and Training

Victoria, Melbourne hearing, 12 November 1999).



The inquiry heard

criticism of the level of resources available to Koorie education programs

and of their implementation in individual schools.

We are constantly

battling for resources - especially financial resources - to put things

in place. The only funding we can access is if we go for a KODE school:

Koorie Open Door Education schools. We'd like to have a public meeting

with the Koorie community to see what they want. People have said before

they don't want to be separate in a KODE school. Schools help us out a

little bit out of their global budget. But most of that is earmarked so

we've got to go and beg. We seem to be begging most of our lives and mostly

the answer is no. We get the funding for pilot projects but there's no

more after that (Bairnsdale Vic Koorie workers meeting, 11 November


It was commented

that the ASSPA [Aboriginal Student Support and Parent Awareness] Committee

at Sale College was being "run by staff. They're saying where the money

should go. Whereas actually it's the parents' and children's money" (Bairnsdale

Vic Koorie workers meeting, 11 November 1999).

In South

Australia, before a teacher gets a job, they would have had to do cross-cultural

studies. There are several regional centres with high Koorie student populations.

The Koorie Educators have to run professional development programs. When

we do that we've got to run around begging for resources. It's not compulsory

so if they choose not to go to PD days - they're not over-rapt in Aboriginal

PD days. You struggle to get half a day. If you say a whole day, they

turn up their noses. If you say you want to take them to the Aboriginal

Co-operative and put on a dinner for them, a lot of them don't want to

go and eat the food because the food might be dirty. We did it one day

and they came down and found out different. But they choose to do whatever

they like. We're called in as education workers to sort out the problems

(in the schools) and we don't always get these people taking on our suggestions.

Why do we have to battle all the time to get people there and to create

awareness when there's a model in South Australia? (Bairnsdale Vic

Koorie workers meeting, 11 November 1999).





In the period 1997-99

Education Department of WA has had an Aboriginal Education Operational

Plan to improve outcomes for Aboriginal students with six key focus areas:

access and participation; literacy and numeracy; learning environment;

Aboriginal community participation; decision-making; employment. The outcomes

sought were:

  1. All Aboriginal

    students have access to, and participate in, all levels of schooling,

    with a particular focus on early childhood education.

  2. Aboriginal students

    achieve equitable outcomes in Standard Australian English, literacy

    and numeracy.

  3. Aboriginal students

    experience a learning environment that is culturally appropriate, inclusive

    and supportive.

  4. Aboriginal students

    and community access schools and find them welcoming and supportive.

  5. Aboriginal parents,

    caregivers and community effectively participate in educational decision-making.

  6. The number of

    Aboriginal people employed in education is increased.34


IESIP projects

For detail of the

constitution and activities of the WA Aboriginal Education and Training

Council, chaired by respected Indigenous educator May O'Brien, see the

evidence of member Kim Collard, Perth hearing,

24 May 1999. The Council's $325,000 budget comes from IESIP funding.

In WA government

schools in 1997 Aboriginal representatives constituted 2% of P&C Committees

and 346 schools had ASSPA committees.35 These are funded by



Indigenous educators

[A]ll of

the 16 education districts have a coordinator of Aboriginal education

and have Aboriginal liaison officers who work alongside schools but in

particular play an advocacy role for parents and the Aboriginal community.

Also, each district has an Aboriginal education council which is chaired

by a local Aboriginal person and is aimed at providing a decision-making

and participatory voice for Aboriginal people within the district structure

and also, we hope, in the school structure . not all schools but many

schools have ASSPA committees, or at least schools with a significant

Aboriginal population, and many schools have Aboriginal and Islander education

workers who are not trained teachers but again whose role is to work directly

with the students and the community and with the teachers to try to support

the education of the Aboriginal students (Jayne Johnston, EDWA, Perth

hearing, 24 May 1999). There were 64 Aboriginal staff employed by

the Education Department in a professional capacity (administrators and

teachers) in 1997 ... 374 ... in a para professional capacity (Aboriginal

Liaison Officers & Aboriginal and Islander Education Workers ... [and]

26 ... in general administration ...36


Language teaching

We actually

have a literacy strategy for which Aboriginal literacy is a key component,

and the sorts of initiatives that we are putting in place there include

an Aboriginal English policy, which is actually about ensuring that all

teachers recognise and value Aboriginal English as a dialect of English

that's spoken by Aboriginal students . And alongside that is a professional

development program, the ABC of Two-Way Literacy and Learning, which is

targeting schools statewide, using Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal personnel,

and is really about the delivery of an inclusive curriculum for the benefit

of both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students. Built into that is the

acceptance of Aboriginal English as being a legitimate form of communication

(Jayne Johnston, EDWA, Perth hearing, 24 May 1999).

I think we have

two or three Aboriginal languages which are part of our LOTE provision

- languages other than English (Jayne Johnston, EDWA, Perth hearing,

24 May 1999).

Although WA does

not have a bilingual education program in the state school system, language

immersion is offered in parts of the Kimberley region.

... we are

running language immersion programs where the Aboriginal students in particular,

I think they're all Aboriginal in fact, although it wasn't culturally

chosen, are language immersed and they're put into programs for half a

day four days a week which just intensely work on language development

and the recognition of standard Australian versus other forms of English

(Principal, Kununurra hearing, 17 May 1999).

We have Aboriginal

Studies and we teach Walmajari. We use the Walmajarri CD Rom. We tape

the children through the computer. We take the children on bush trips.

It is hard though to get the people [community members] to come down

from the camps to teach language. We have 2 community members who speak

Walmajarri and we are dependent on these language specialists (Billiluna

WA school meeting, 14 May 1999).

Using curriculum

like "Walking, Talking" Texts is invaluable. This is a literacy program

developed in the Northern Territory. Programs that have been developed

in Perth have not worked in secondary education in the Kimberley. We

are following the Pathways program from the NT. This program incudes

the Intensive English, then Foundation Studies and then General Studies.

We are up to our second year of secondary education here. Our students

have been working on this program because it is sequential learning,

it leads somewhere and it is outcomes based. The continuity of this

program is useful for students who move around. We have 8 students who

are enrolled in this program with about 4 or 5 regular participants

(Billiluna WA school meeting, 14 May 1999).


Cultural awareness

[W]e have

an initiative where all staff of government schools - not just teaching

staff; non-teaching staff as well - will participate in a cultural awareness

program over the next few years. By the end of this year each district

has to have a plan and a strategy in place for how that is going to be

enacted in their district, and it's a program which has already been developed

and trialed and is delivered by Aboriginal people in the local community

(Jayne Johnston, EDWA, Perth hearing, 24 May 1999).


33 In

the NT there are 55 Homeland Centre Programs serving 1,016 students (NT

Department of Education submission, page 4).
34 EDWA 1998, A Profile of Aboriginal Education in Government

Schools, page 2.
35 EDWA 1998, A Profile of Aboriginal Education in Government

Schools, page 9.
36 EDWA 1998, A Profile of Aboriginal Education in Government

Schools, page 8.



Barriers to participation and success


updated 2 December 2001.