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									Our Children,
Our Future –
 Achieving Improved Primary and Secondary Education Outcomes for Indigenous Students




 An Overview of
 Investment Opportunities
 and Approaches
 A REPORT PUBLISHED IN COLLABORATION BY THE AMP FOUNDATION, EFFECTIVE PHILANTHROPY AND SOCIAL VENTURES AUSTRALIA




our future                                                                                                     
                                                                                  Our Children, Our Future –
There has been tacit acceptance                                                       Achieving Improved Primary and Secondary Education
                                                                                      Outcomes for Indigenous Students
of the non-achievement of                                                             An Overview of Investment Opportunities
educational standards by Aboriginal                                                   and Approaches

children and young people.




               The resultant acceptance of this lack of
               educational success has a cumulative
               effect. It is based on the belief that
               Aboriginal children and young people
               will never reach their full potential and
               if they fall behind society then welfare
               will protect them. Their low level of
               educational success is accepted
               as a normative expectation.

               This has to change.
               Western Australian Aboriginal Child Health Survey: Improving the
               Educational Experiences of Aboriginal Children and Young People
                     foreward by tom calma                                                                                       About this publication



                            Access to education is a basic human right enshrined in                                                                                     this report has been published in collaboration                                the publishing organisations
                                                                                                                                                                        by the Amp foundation, effective philanthropy
                            the universal declaration of human rights. most people
                                                                                                                                                                        and Social ventures Australia. it is based on an
                            now accept that education is the key to improving life                                                                                      earlier report on indigenous education prepared
                            chances and life choices. An education leads us to greater                                                                                  for, and funded by, the Amp foundation. the Amp
                            opportunities to participate in employment and in the                                                                                       foundation has generously agreed to support the
                                                                                                                                                                        extension and publication of the earlier report for
                            wider society. this in turn can lead to other benefits such as                                                                                                                                                             the AMP Foundation – www.amp.com.au
                                                                                                                                                                        the benefit of the broader philanthropic Sector.
                            improved emotional and social well-being and better access                                                                                                                                                                 Amp has been contributing to the Australian
                                                                                                                                                                        this work is copyright apart from any use as                                   community for more than 50 years. the Amp
                            to services such as housing and health care.                                                                                                                                                                               foundation was established in 99 and is one of the
                                                                                                                                                                        permitted under the copyright Act 968 (cth). you
                            indigenous Australia has a population of over half a million people and it is                                                               may copy this report for your own personal use and                             vehicles through which Amp invests in the community.
    to m c A L m A          growing. unfortunately for this growing population, the education statistics                                                                research or that of your firm or company. you may
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       our purpose is to make a difference in the Australian
                            paint an alarming picture. indigenous youth remain the most educationally                                                                   not republish, retransmit, redistribute or otherwise
        titLe                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          community at a grassroots level, where Amp people
                            disadvantaged group in Australia. in many parts of Australia they are                                                                       make the report available to any other party without
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       live and work. Based on the philosophy of offering a
                            disadvantaged in terms of access to appropriate and high quality education, and                                                             written permission from the Authors.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       ‘hand up and not a handout’, the foundation invests
                            as a consequence many are not reaching the basic educational milestones. the
                                                                                                                                                                        copies of the report are available for download at                             in two key areas – capacity Building and community
                            extent of this disadvantage and the challenges and opportunities to overcome
                                                                                                                                                                        the publishing organisations’ websites. requests                               involvement.
                            this disadvantage are well documented in this report.
                                                                                                                                                                        and inquiries concerning reproduction should be
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       our capacity Building programs encourage and
                            While at present there are large challenges, improvements can be made with                                                                  addressed to the publishing organisations through
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       support people to help themselves. our efforts
                            appropriate policies, funding and partnerships between government, education                                                                one of the contacts listed below.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       are especially focused on young people and the
                            providers and communities. Strategies and resources that are commensurate
                                                                                                                                                                        in all cases the report must be acknowledged as the                            sustainability of the not-for-profit sector.
                            with this long-term challenge are urgently needed. investment in indigenous
                                                                                                                                                                        source when reproducing or quoting any part of this
                            education needs to be significant, and at all levels. recruitment programs,                                                                                                                                                our community involvement programs encourage and
                                                                                                                                                                        publication.
                            skill development and employment retention programs are required so that                                                                                                                                                   support people to help others. We focus on supporting
                            the indigenous labour market increases rather than decreases. every school                                                                  for any inquiries in relation to this report please                            the work of Amp employees and Amp financial
                            community needs a quantum of indigenous teachers so that liaison between                                                                    contact:                                                                       planners in the community.
                            the indigenous home and school environments is managed by a large, enabled
                                                                                                                                                                        – Authors Louise doyle or regina hill
                            indigenous workforce. indigenous teachers and teachers’ aides need to be well-
                                                                                                                                                                            info@effectivephilanthropy.com.au
                            resourced and provided with first class professional learning and development
                            opportunities. the best and brightest non-indigenous teachers need to be                                                                    – the Amp foundation
                            encouraged to work in remote indigenous schools. education facilities need to be                                                                ampfoundation@amp.com.au
                            of the same standard across the country. there is much work to be done.                                                                     – Social ventures Australia
                                                                                                                                                                            dpeppercorn@socialventures.com.au
                            this report will assist you to understand the current challenges in indigenous
                            education. it will also clarify the role that the philanthropic sector can play in                                                                                                                                         effective Philanthropy –
                            assisting to close the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous educational
                                                                                                                                                                        notice and disclaimer
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       www.effectivephilanthropy.com.au
                            opportunities and outcomes. this is an important challenge and we must all work                                                             the Amp foundation, effective philanthropy and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       effective philanthropy is a research consultancy that
                            in partnership to make a difference. i hope you will lend your support.                                                                     Social ventures Australia shall not be liable for loss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       works to identify, promote and pilot innovative and
                                                                                                                                                                        or damage arising out of or in connection with the
                            i commend this report to you.                                                                                                                                                                                              effective approaches to social and environmental
                                                                                                                                                                        use of this report. this is a comprehensive limitation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       issues. it seeks to do that through the preparation
                                                                                                                                                                        of liability that applies to all damages of any kind,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       of social issue reports to inform intervention design,
                                                                                                                                                                        including without limitation compensatory, direct,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       social policy definition and philanthropic investment.
                                                                                                                                                                        indirect or consequential damages, loss of data,
                                                                                                                                                                        income or profit, loss of or damage to property and                            effective philanthropy works with philanthropists
                                                                                                                                                                        claims of third parties.                                                       to assist them in identifying and funding effective
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       responses to social and environmental issues.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       effective philanthropy assists in the design, pilot and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       evaluation of innovative not-for-profit intervention
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       programs and collaborates with philanthropists and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       the organisations that they fund to improve the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       effectiveness of program delivery.



                                                                                              Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                        
A B O u t t h i S p u B l i C At i O n




                                                                                                                                                                                            table of contents



                                                         the Authors                                                                                                                        page Section                                                                   page Section
                                                         louise doyle                                                                                                                       6        1. executive summary                                                  49       6. intervention options
                                                         Stanford executive program for philanthropy Leaders,
Social Ventures Australia –                              BA, certificate in public relations                                                                                                10       2. introduction                                                       0       6.1 the role of the philanthropic Sector
www.socialventures.com.au                                louisedoyle@effectivephilanthropy.com.au                                                                                           11       2.1 purpose of this report                                            1       6.2 considerations when investing in the
                                                         Louise doyle is a principal with effective                                                                                                                                                                                     indigenous Sector
Social ventures Australia (SvA), an independent                                                                                                                                             11       2.2 Scope of this report – what it does and
non-profit organisation established in 2002, is a        philanthropy. Louise works as a consultant in the not-                                                                                          does not cover                                                    2       6.3 identified intervention (investment)
new model of social investment that aligns the           for-profit sector providing advice to philanthropic                                                                                                                                                                            options
                                                                                                                                                                                            12       2.3 Who will find this report useful and
interests of philanthropists with the needs of social    investors in relation to their investment strategy and                                                                                          how?                                                                     6.4 Key success factors
entrepreneurs to combat some of Australia’s most         grant making.                                                                                                                                                                                                     6       6.5 detailed intervention summaries
                                                                                                                                                                                            13       2.4 methodology used to prepare this report
pressing community challenges.                           regina hill                                                                                                                                                                                                       6               6..1 holistic schooling approach
With a focus on accountability and impact, SvA           master international Laws, mBA, BA/LLB hons                                                                                        14       3. Background
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           8               6..2 tailored curriculum (culturally
provides funding, mentoring and organisational           reginahill@effectivephilanthropy.com.au                                                                                            16       3.1 the objectives of education                                                              relevant and capability
tools to a carefully selected portfolio of non-          regina hill is a principal with effective philanthropy.                                                                            16       3.2 the Australian education system                                                          appropriate)
profit organisations led by outstanding social           regina works as a consultant and researcher in                                                                                                                                                                    9               6..3 Appropriate staff training
                                                                                                                                                                                            19       3.3 the indigenous student population
entrepreneurs. in doing so, we seek to boost their       the commercial and not-for-profit sector. She has                                                                                                                                                                                        (culturally relevant and capability
effectiveness, efficiency, capacity and sustainability                                                                                                                                      19               3.3.1 overall indigenous population –
                                                         a special interest in issues relating to indigenous                                                                                                                                                                                      appropriate)
through our hands-on approach – supporting their                                                                                                                                                                   a contextual overview
                                                         affairs, early childhood development, children and                                                                                                                                                                60               6.. holistic student support
programs to grow and mature so that they are able        young people at risk, education and mental health.                                                                                 20               3.3.2 Student population profile
to create sustainable and lasting change.                                                                                                                                                   22       3.4 government-based indigenous-specific                              62               6.. Student and parental engagement
                                                                                                                                                                                                         education initiatives                                             6               6..6 intensive Learning Support
 SvA also offers consulting services to the non-
profit sector, and to philanthropic organisations        Acknowledgements                                                                                                                   25       4. indigenous education                                               66               6..7 School-based vocational training
and individuals. these focus on helping non-profits      the Authors are grateful to chris Boys and helen                                                                                                                                                                                         and development programs
to develop and implement their strategic plans, to
                                                                                                                                                                                                        outcomes
                                                         Stanley for the support that they provided in relation                                                                                                                                                            68               6..8 Scholarship programs
improve their operations and to demonstrate their        to the preparation of earlier versions of this report.                                                                             28       .1 Attendance
impact. We work with funders including foundations,      they also thank dr. Jo Stubbings for editing this                                                                                  28               .1.1 preschool attendance
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           70       7. Conclusion
philanthropists and governments to demonstrate           report.                                                                                                                                                                                                           71       7.1 Key insights for philanthropic investment
                                                                                                                                                                                            29               .1.2 School attendance
funding impact, to improve funding efficiency and
                                                         the publishing organisations are grateful to the                                                                                   30       4.2 retention                                                         72       7.2 final words
to identify organisations that deliver demonstrable
                                                         following subject matter experts who have reviewed                                                                                 31       4.3 Student performance and achievement
outcomes. SvA’s consulting services complement                                                                                                                                                                                                                             73       glossary of terms
                                                         this report:
SvA’s program of workshops and mentoring services.                                                                                                                                          32       4.4     post-secondary qualifications
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           7       references
                                                         – Adrian Appo, ganbina                                                                                                             33       4.5     Labour force participation and
SvA has conducted a range of research in the area
                                                         – dr Barry Osborne, Adjunct Associate professor                                                                                                     employment (positive transitions from                         77       Acknowledgements
covered by this report. it has prepared knowledge
and information papers and in 2007 it conducted             James cook university and djarragun college                                                                                                      school to work)                                               78       Appendix one – factors identified as affecting
an indigenous roundtable investigating indigenous           Board member                                                                                                                    3       4.6 Socio-economic status                                                      indigenous student absenteeism
education and transitions to work. SvA’s work in         – Jenny Samms, department of planning and                                                                                          3       4.7 individual wellbeing                                              79       Appendix two – detailed description of School
these areas is ongoing.                                     community development victoria
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    and Student-based change levers
                                                         – dr nereda White, indigenous unit, Australian                                                                                     36       5. Factors contributing to
                                                            catholic university                                                                                                                         poor indigenous education
                                                         the publishing organisations are grateful for the                                                                                              outcomes
                                                         input provided by the review panel. the publishing                                                                                 37       5.1 underlying conceptual framework
                                                         organisations take full responsibility for the views
                                                                                                                                                                                            39       5.2 Social or community context
                                                         expressed in this report and note that any errors or
                                                         omissions are their responsibility and not those of                                                                                1       5.3 home context
                                                         anyone consulted in the process of preparing                                                                                       3       5.4 School context
                                                         the report.                                                                                                                        8       5.5 Student context




                                                                                                                  Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                               
                                                                                                      . e x e c u t i v e S u m m A ry




1. Executive summary                                                                                                                        in Australia today indigenous students at all
                                                                                                                                            levels experience worse education outcomes than
                                                                                                                                            non-indigenous students. indigenous students
                                                                                                                                            demonstrate lower school attendance, retention
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           the area of education is broad and the issues
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           impacting the effectiveness of indigenous education
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           are complex. for that reason this report has focused
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           on the specific challenges and opportunities relating
                                                                                                                                            and achievement than non-indigenous students                                   to primary and secondary school level education
    for a number of years Australian governments have sought                                                                                across all age groups and all States and territories.                         (years  to ).
    to position Australia as the ‘clever country’. they have                                                                                indigenous post-school qualification, labour force
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           primary and secondary education is only one
                                                                                                                                            participation and employment rates are also lower
    promoted the importance of education and training as the                                                                                                                                                               element of a broader education system that starts
                                                                                                                                            than those of non-indigenous Australians as is
    foundation for our economic prosperity and future growth.                                                                               their general socio-economic status, health and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           with early childhood development and pre-primary
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           schooling and extends through to vocational and
    in the case of indigenous Australians, however, education                                                                               wellbeing.5
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           tertiary education and the transition from school
    and training arguably hold even greater significance as they                                                                            historically, poor indigenous education outcomes are                           to post-school employment. in choosing to focus
    provide the key to not only economic prosperity but also to                                                                             reflected in low economic participation.                                       on years  to  education, we are not seeking to
    social equality.                                                                                                                        the above outcomes have been linked to the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           downgrade the importance of those other areas,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           which clearly play an important role in indigenous
                                                                                                                                            historical exclusion of indigenous people from the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           education and the translation of education outcomes
                                                                                                                                            Australian education system, both formally through
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           into labour force participation and employment.
                                                                                                                                            past government policy and informally through the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           indeed, each area could be the subject of a
                                                                                                                                            failure to deliver education services that meet the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           separate report.
                                                                                                                                            needs of indigenous students.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           this report provides an overview of the state of
                                                                                                                                            in order to improve indigenous education outcomes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           indigenous primary and secondary education
                                                                                                                                            there is a need to address a range of factors that
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           outcomes in Australia and the impact that they have
                                                                                                                                            negatively impacts the ability of indigenous students
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           on the capacity of indigenous students to access
                                                                                                                                            to access and to engage successfully in education.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           post-secondary qualifications and employment
                                                                                                                                            the current Australian education system is set up                              opportunities.
                                                                                                                                            predominantly to support a population in which
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           the report identifies the underlying factors that
                                                                                                                                            relatively few students require significant material,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           contribute to those outcomes, including the Social/
                                                                                                                                            personal or learning support; however, for a number
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           community and home context in which indigenous
                                                                                                                                            of indigenous students this is not the case.6
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           students live, the School context in which they
                                                                                                                                            this report seeks to provide insight into the role that                        participate and their own personal life experience
                                                                                                                                            can be played by the philanthropic sector to help                              (referred to as Student context).
                                                                                                                                            to improve the education outcomes of indigenous
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           it also discusses some of the approaches that are
                                                                                                                                            young people in Australia.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           being taken by the not-for-profit sector to address
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           those factors. in doing that, the report seeks to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           focus on approaches that are related to the way in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          which schooling is delivered, the experience that
                                                                                                                                                Steering committee for the review of government Service provision.
                                                                                                                                                Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage: Key Indicators 2007 Overview.          students have of school and their capacity to access
                                                                                                                                                canberra: productivity commission ScrgSp, 007, p.. (ScrgSp               and to engage in school and to learn. the report
                                                                                                                                                overview 007)
                                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                                Steering committee for the review of government Service provision.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           does not investigate interventions that seek to
                                                                                                                                                Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage: Key Indicators 2007. canberra:         address broader Social issues (e.g. health, housing
                                                                                                                                                productivity commission ScrgSp, 007, pp.–. (ScrgSp 007)
                                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                                                                                                           and community function) or home-based issues (e.g.
                                                                                                                                                ibid., pp.–6, ., ..
                                                                                                                                            5                                                                              parenting and parental education and employment)
                                                                                                                                                ScrgSp overview 007, pp., 8–; Australian Bureau of Statistics.
                                                                                                                                                The Health and Welfare of Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait         affecting the capacity of indigenous students to
                                                                                                                                                Islander Peoples. cat. no. 70.0. canberra: ABS, 005. (ABS 70.0)       access or to engage in education. it also does not
                                                                                                                                            6
                                                                                                                                                Zubrick et al. 006, p.xxxiii.                                             cover government-funded activity.




6                                                                  Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                        7
 . e x e c u t i v e S u m m A ry                                                                                                                                         . e x e c u t i v e S u m m A ry




                                     the report identifies eight intervention categories              2. tailored (Culturally relevant and Capability                     5. Student and Parental engagement – the delivery                              the implication of this for philanthropic investors is
                                     that work within a School and Student context                       Appropriate) Curriculum – the development and                       of school and non-school-based programs                                     that well-focused investments in this area:
                                     to improve the delivery of education and the                        dissemination of a culturally and contextually                      that specifically seek to engage students with
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         – require a holistic understanding of the local issues
                                     education outcomes of indigenous students that                      relevant and capability appropriate curriculum                      school and learning by encouraging school
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             that need to be addressed in order to achieve
                                     are suited to philanthropic investment on the basis                 that is tailored to the needs of indigenous                         attendance, attachment and retention. this is
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             effective outcomes
                                     that they either augment or complement existing                     students and teaching tools to support                              done by promoting parental and family support
                                     government funding or provide an opportunity for                    indigenous student learning.                                        for student education, connecting parents with                              – may involve multiple service providers (and
                                     the philanthropic Sector to invest in more innovative                                                                                   school and helping parents to better support their                              as a result tend to require more extensive due
                                                                                                      3. Appropriate (Culturally relevant and Capability                                                                                                     diligence, more complex funding structures and
                                     responses to issues affecting indigenous education.                                                                                     children to learn.
                                                                                                         Appropriate) Staff training – the development                                                                                                       more extensive coordination, monitoring and
                                     the eight intervention categories covered in this                   and delivery of culturally appropriate and                       6. intensive learning Support – school and non-                                    evaluation processes)
                                     report include:                                                     capability relevant pre- and in-service principal,                  school-based programs that seek to provide
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         – often require higher levels of overall funding
                                                                                                         teacher and teaching support staff training that                    intensive learning support including remedial
                                     1. holistic Schooling Approach – the adoption of                                                                                                                                                                        in order to make sure that all relevant program
                                                                                                         includes skills relating to the design and delivery                 literacy and numeracy programs, general
                                        a holistic approach to schooling that delivers a                                                                                                                                                                     components are covered and so often involve
                                                                                                         of the curriculum as well as the establishment                      curriculum-based learning support or tutoring,
                                        culturally and contextually relevant and capability                                                                                                                                                                  larger investments or collaborative funding
                                                                                                         and management of supportive teacher–student                        extension learning and homework support.
                                        appropriate curriculum that relates students’                                                                                                                                                                        arrangements
                                                                                                         relationships.
                                        learning to their life experience. Such schooling                                                                                 7. School-based Vocational training and                                        – tend to require higher levels of support
                                        approaches incorporate program elements that                  4. holistic Student Support – the delivery of school                   development – school-based vocational                                           where interventions are delivered in remote
                                        address the full range of student needs (including               and non-school-based programs that specifically                     development and training programs including                                     areas compared to less remote areas due to
                                        their basic material needs, travel to and from                   seek to meet students’ individual needs by                          career planning, school-based apprenticeships                                   the narrower range of services and service
                                        school, health and nutrition, personal and                       assisting them to access and engage in school                       and tAfe programs etc.                                                          providers in those areas and the higher levels of
                                        learning support requirements). they provide a                   including material, personal and learning support                                                                                                   disadvantage that tend to be faced there
                                                                                                                                                                          8. Scholarships – the provision of scholarships to
                                        highly supportive school environment and engage                  requirements and to promote parental and family
                                                                                                                                                                             support indigenous student access to education.                             – need to allow a reasonable timeframe for change
                                        students’ parents, family and community in the                   support for student education and learning.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             given the complexity of the factors affecting
                                        design/delivery of day-to-day schooling.                                                                                          this report provides case studies of each of the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             education outcomes
                                                                                                                                                                          above intervention categories in order to provide
                                                                                                                                                                          a sense of how they operate. (these case studies                               – in the case of school-based investments:
                                                                                                                                                                          are provided by way of example only and their                                      – require the underlying organisational systems
Figure 1 Intervention Categories covered in this Report                                                                                                                   inclusion in the report should not be seen as a                                       at the school (e.g. school management
                                                                                                                                                                          recommendation for funding.) having analysed each                                     and culture, staff recruitment and training,
                                                                                                                                                                          of the above interventions we have also identified                                    curriculum planning and student discipline
                                       School context                                                        Student context                                              the types of Key Success factors that apply to                                        procedures etc.) to support the delivery of the
                                                                                                                                                                          each of the intervention categories that can help                                     programs being funded – the alignment of such
Change Levers                                                                                                                                                             philanthropic investors to assess the effectiveness of                                systems, as well as the organisational structure
                                      Access to     School /    Curriculum      Teaching       Parental,     Basic        Engagement Intensive         Vocational
                                      school        Learning                    approach       family and    material     with school learning         development        individual intervention programs.                                                     and staffing of the school, with program
                                                    environment                                community     and          and learning support         and                                                                                                      delivery is critical to ensure that such programs
                                                                                               involvement   personal                                  transition         the report concludes with some insights for
                                                                                                             support                                   support
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                are sustainable, rather than dependent on
                                                                                                                                                                          philanthropic investors when investing in this area.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                the principal and staff who are present at the
                                                                                                                                                                          When reviewing programs that seek to improve                                          school at the time of investment
Intevention Categories                                                                                                                                                    indigenous education outcomes, it is rare for a single                             – need to take into account taxation structures
                                      1. Holistic Schooling Approach                                                                                                      program to address the range of outcomes or factors                                   that currently limit the capacity of investors to
                                                                                                                                                                          that often need to be addressed to support change.                                    access deductible gift recipient (dgr) based
                                                                                                             4. Holistic Student Support
                                                                                                                                                                          in many (if not most) cases a mix of interventions is                                 tax deductions.
                                                                                                                                                                          required to do that.
                                     8.                          2.             3.                                         5.              6.          7.                                                                                                this report does not provide specific
                                     Scholarships                Tailored       Appropriate                                Student &       Intensive   School-            the strongest intervention models tend therefore                               recommendations to philanthropic investors
                                                                 (culturally    (culturally                                Parental        Learning    based
                                                                 relevant &     relevant &                                 Engagement      Support     Vocational         to be multi-faceted and to involve the coordination                            regarding which programs they should fund. the
                                                                 capability     capability                                                             Training &         of a range of programs to address the issues                                   report has been structured to provide investors
                                                                 appropriate)   appropriate)                                                           Development        affecting students’ capacity to engage with school                             with useful background information to help them to
                                                                 Curriculum     Staff                                                                                     and learning. the key often lies in providing a                                understand the issues associated with indigenous
                                                                                Training
                                                                                                                                                                          coordinated response that addresses both the                                   education and conceptual frameworks to help them
                                                                                                                                                                          learning and other support needs of the individual                             to identify and assess potential investment options.
                                                                                                                                                                          students.


8                                                                                                                                      Our Children, Our Future –    A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS      9
                                                                                         . introduction




                                                                                                                                . purpose of this report                                                     . Scope of this report –
                                                                                                                                                                                                               what it does and does not cover




2. Introduction                                                                                                                 Although there is significant interest
                                                                                                                                among the Philanthropic Sector in
                                                                                                                                Indigenous issues, Investors often do
                                                                                                                                                                                                               the area of education is broad and the issues
                                                                                                                                                                                                               affecting the effectiveness of indigenous education
                                                                                                                                                                                                               are complex. for that reason this report has focused
                                                                                                                                                                                                               on the specific challenges and opportunities relating
                                                                                                                                not invest in the area:                                                        to primary and secondary school level education
     this section of the report provides an overview                                                                                                                                                           (years  to ).
     of the objectives of this report and the                                                       ‘because they lack the expertise and knowledge to grant
                                                                                                                                                                                                               this report looks at:
     methodology used to prepare it.                                                                well in a complex sector and some labour under
                                                                                                                                                                                                               – indigenous education Outcomes – it provides
                                                                                                    misconceptions about working with Indigenous causes.’ 7
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   an overview of the state of indigenous primary
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   and secondary education outcomes in Australia
                                                                                                                                this report seeks to provide insight into the role                                 and the impact that they have on the capacity
                                                                                                                                that the philanthropic Sector can play to assist in                                of indigenous students to access post-secondary
                                                                                                                                improving the education outcomes of indigenous                                     qualifications and employment opportunities
                                                                                                                                young people in Australia. it is also intended to be                           – Contributing Factors – it identifies the underlying
                                                                                                                                a useful tool for practitioners in the not-for-                                    factors that contribute to those outcomes
                                                                                                                                profit and government sectors with an interest in                                  including the Social/Community, and home
                                                                                                                                indigenous education.                                                              Contexts in which indigenous students live, the
                                                                                                                                the report does not provide specific                                               School Context in which they participate and their
                                                                                                                                recommendations to philanthropic investors in                                      own personal life experience (referred to in the
                                                                                                                                terms of which programs they should fund. instead,                                 report as Student Context)
                                                                                                                                the report has been structured to provide investors                            – interventions – it discusses some of the
                                                                                                                                with useful background information to help them                                    approaches that are being taken to address those
                                                                                                                                to understand the challenges and opportunities                                     factors and identifies a series of intervention
                                                                                                                                associated with improving primary and secondary                                    categories that are suited to philanthropic
                                                                                                                                level indigenous education outcomes. it also seeks                                 investment on the basis that they either augment
                                                                                                                                to provide investors with conceptual frameworks                                    or complement existing government funding
                                                                                                                                to help them to identify and independently assess                                  or provide an opportunity for the philanthropic
                                                                                                                                potential investment options.                                                      Sector to invest in more innovative responses
                                                                                                                                                                                                               – Key Success Factors – it identifies the Key Success
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   factors (KSfs) relating to program design and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   implementation that apply to each of the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   identified intervention categories.
                                                                                                                                                                                                               the report focuses on interventions that are related
                                                                                                                                                                                                               to the School and Student context, in particular, the
                                                                                                                                                                                                               way in which schooling is delivered, the experience
                                                                                                                                                                                                               that students have of school and their capacity to
                                                                                                                                                                                                               access and engage in school and to learn. the report
                                                                                                                                                                                                               does not investigate interventions that seek to
                                                                                                                                                                                                               address broader Social/community or home-based
                                                                                                                                                                                                               issues affecting the capacity of indigenous students
                                                                                                                                                                                                               to access or to engage in education and to learn. it
                                                                                                                                                                                                               also does not cover government-funded programs.
                                                                                                                                                                                                               primary and secondary education is obviously only
                                                                                                                                                                                                               one element of a broader education system that
                                                                                                                                                                                                               starts with early childhood development and pre-


                                                                                                                                7
                                                                                                                                    Scaife W. Challenges in Indigenous philanthropy: Reporting Australian
                                                                                                                                    grantmakers’ perspectives. Australian Journal of Social issues 006,
                                                                                                                                    p.8. (Scaife 006)




0                                                     Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                      
2. intrOduCtiOn                                                                                                                                    2. intrOduCtiOn




                                                        . Who will find this report                                                                                                                                        . methodology used to prepare
                                                        useful and how?                                                                                                                                                      this report


primary schooling and extends through to vocational     this report has been written predominately to                                                                                                                        the preparation of this report has involved five (5) stages:
and tertiary education and the transition from school   inform philanthropic investors. As noted above, it is
to post-school employment. this report does not         also intended to provide a guide for practitioners in
deal with those areas, nor does it deal with the area   the not-for-profit and government sectors with an                                                                                                                    Stage  – Literature review
of parental or adult education which is also relevant   interest in indigenous education.                                                                                                                                    A detailed literature review was undertaken and interviews were conducted with
when considering indigenous education outcomes.                                                                                                                                                                              subject matter experts to:
                                                        Figure.2 What this Report is designed to help you do
in choosing to focus on years  to  education we                                                                                                                                                                           – understand the state of indigenous education outcomes and collect background
are not seeking to downgrade the importance of                                                                                                                                                                                   data
those other areas, which clearly play an important                               Understand the Social Context                                                                                                               – identify the factors contributing to these outcomes
role in indigenous education and the translation of                                       Section 3                                                                                                                          – identify the types of intervention that are effective in addressing these factors.
education outcomes into labour force participation
and employment. indeed, each of those areas could,
in themselves, be the subject of a separate report            Understand the Target Issues – Indigenous Education Outcomes                                                                                                   Stage  – program/response identification
such as this.                                                                           Section 4                                                                                                                            A program review was conducted to identify examples of programs applying these
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             types of intervention and the service providers delivering them.
the decision to focus on school-based education has
been taken as a starting point from which to build                                                                                                                                                                           this involved consultations with subject matter experts, internet-based research,
                                                                  Understand the Factors Contributing to those Outcomes
an understanding of the underlying issues relating                                                                                                                                                                           a review of recommendations in research and policy papers, contact with
                                                                                        Section 5
to indigenous education and some of the approaches                                                                                                                                                                           commonwealth, State and territory education departments and indigenous
that can be taken to address them.                                                                                                                                                                                           organisations, as well as a range of philanthropic foundations that fund in this area.
Although the report references some of the                                Understand Available Intervention Options
approaches that are being undertaken by                                               Section 6 and 7                                                                                                                        Stage  – program/response investigation
government in this area it is not intended to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             interviews were then used to build an understanding of each of the above
(and does not) provide a detailed discussion or
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             intervention categories and to identify key success factors associated with the
assessment of government policy in this area.                    Understand the Key Success Factors for those Interventions                                                                                                  delivery of higher impact programs and responses.
throughout this report the term ‘indigenous’ is                                      Section 6 and 7
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             the case studies provided in Section 6 are based on some of the programs that were
used to refer to people identifying themselves as
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             investigated. As noted above, the case studies in Section 6 are provided by way
Australian Aboriginal or torres Strait islander.        in particular, the report has been designed to help                                                                                                                  of example only. their inclusion in the report should not, therefore, be seen as a
                                                        philanthropic investors to:                                                                                                                                          recommendation for funding.
                                                        – build an understanding of the issues surrounding
                                                           indigenous education in terms of the poor                                                                                                                         Stage  – framework development and draft report preparation
                                                           outcomes that are being achieved and the factors
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             the information collected in Stages  to  was then used to develop the conceptual
                                                           contributing to these outcomes (Sections  and 5)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             and intervention frameworks set out in this report and a draft report was prepared.
                                                        – identify the types of intervention that they can
                                                           invest in to address these issues (Section 6)
                                                        – identify Key Success factors that they can use to                                                                                                                  Stage 5 – peer review and report finalisation
                                                           assess specific programs that they identify for                                                                                                                   the draft report was then reviewed by a panel of subject matter experts. the
                                                           potential investment (Section 6).                                                                                                                                 feedback and views of the review panel were used to inform the structure and
                                                        the case studies that are set out in Section 6 are                                                                                                                   content of the final report.
                                                        provided by way of example only. the programs
                                                        set out in these case studies have not been
                                                        independently reviewed or audited. their inclusion
                                                        in the report should not, therefore, be seen as a
                                                        recommendation for funding. As a matter of good
                                                        practice philanthropic investors interested in funding
                                                        interventions such as those identified in Section
                                                        6 should ensure they undertake appropriate due
                                                        diligence prior to investment to make sure that the
                                                        programs they invest in align with their funding
                                                        strategy and meet the investment criteria.


                                                                                                               Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                             
                                                                                                       B A c Kg r o u n d




3. Background                                                                                                                                 indigenous Australians continue to experience
                                                                                                                                              poorer outcomes than non-indigenous Australians
                                                                                                                                              across most social and economic parameters. on
                                                                                                                                              average indigenous people live 7 years less than the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             issues relating to child development and education
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             have been identified as key areas for strategic
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             action within this framework. improved education
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             outcomes are specifically identified in the framework
                                                                                                                                              non-indigenous population, their health is generally                           as playing a key role in improving socio-economic
     this section sets the context for the report. it looks at the                                                                            poorer, they are approximately three times more                                status, health, wellbeing and social cohesion.
     purpose of education and provides an overview of the                                                                                     likely to be unemployed, when they are employed
                                                                                                                                              their incomes are likely to be lower and they are
     Australian education system and the indigenous student
                                                                                                                                              more likely to live in communities that are subject to
     population. it also provides a snapshot of the approaches                                                                                social dysfunction.8
     that government has adopted to address disparities in
                                                                                                                                              the commonwealth government has adopted a
     indigenous versus non-indigenous education outcomes.                                                                                     strategic framework through which to understand,
                                                                                                                                              address and report on issues of indigenous
                                                                                                                                              disadvantage.9 this framework identifies a range of
                                                                                                                                              headline indicators in relation to the state (relative
                                                                                                                                              disadvantage) of indigenous people and identifies
                                                                                                                                              seven focus areas for strategic action.


                                                                                                       Figure 3 Commonwealth Government’s strategic framework for addressing Indigenous disadvantage 10


                                                                                                       Key objectives

                                                                                                                                                      Safe, healthy and supportive                       Positive child development                     Improved wealth creation and
                                                                                                                             Curriculum             family environments with strong                      and prevention of violence,                      economic sustainability for
                                                                                                                                                    communities and cultural identity                       crime and self-harm                     individuals, families and communities




                                                                                                       Headline indicators
                                                                                                                                                    – Life expectancy                                 – Suicide and self-harm                            – Labour force participation
                                                                                                                                                    – Disability and chronic disease                  – Substantiated child abuse                          and unemployment
                                                                                                                                                                                                        and neglect                                      – Household and individual income
                                                                                                                                                    – Years 10 and 12 school retention                – Family and community violence                    – Home ownership
                                                                                                                                                      and attainment                                  – Deaths from homicide and
                                                                                                                                                    – Post-secondary education                          hospitalisations for assault
                                                                                                                                                      participation and attainment                    – Imprisonment and juvenile
                                                                                                                                                                                                        detention rates



                                                                                                       Strategic areas for action
                                                                                                                                                     Early child           Early school         Positive                                  Functional                          Economic
                                                                                                                                                   development            engagement &                               Substance                                Effective
                                                                                                                                                                                            childhood and                                and resilient                       participation
                                                                                                                                                    and growth             performance                                use and                              environmental
                                                                                                                                                                                             transition to                               families and                             and
                                                                                                                                                    (prenatal –            (preschool –                               misuse                               health systems
                                                                                                                                                                                              adulthood                                  communities                         development
                                                                                                                                                      3 years)                Year 3)




                                                                                                                                                            Directly education related




                                                                                                                                               8
                                                                                                                                                    ScrgSp overview 007, pp.–55); ABS 70.0.
                                                                                                                                               9
                                                                                                                                                    ScrgSp 007, pp.7–9.
                                                                                                                                               0
                                                                                                                                                    ibid.
                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                    ScrgSp 007, p.7.


                                                                   Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                             5
B A c Kg r o u n d




                     . the objectives of                                                    . the Australian
                     education                                                                education system


                     defined in its broadest terms, education is the                          under the Australian constitution matters relating
                     provision of formal or informal instruction to develop                   to education are the responsibility of the State                              In 2006 there were                     Break Out text 1 – Australian schools profile7
                     skills and to acquire knowledge, understanding,                          and territory governments. in practice, policy and                            9,612 schools                          Chart 1 Australian schools breakdown                                           Chart 2 Breakdown of schools by student
                     values and attitudes that will allow students to                         funding responsibility for education is shared
                                                                                                                                                                            operating in Australia,                                                                                               group average
                     operate effectively in society and to succeed in life                    between the State, territory and commonwealth
                     in personal, social and economic terms.                                governments.                                                                the majority of which
                                                                                                                                                                            were government-                       Independent 1,007                                                              Combined 1,181
                     An effective school education system supports                            education policy is coordinated at a national level                                                                  10%                                                                            13%
                     student development across a range of skill areas.                       through the ministerial council on education,                                 operated schools
                     it contributes to:                                                     employment, training and youth Affairs (mceetyA).                             (72%).                                 Catholic 1,703                                                                 Secondary 1,478
                                                                                              current policy is based on the goals and objectives                                                                  18%                                                                            16%
                     – Academic attainment – based on the acquisition
                                                                                              set out in the national goals for Schooling for the
                          of academic skills and qualifications that
                                                                                              st century that was agreed by the ministerial
                          demonstrate individual ability and provide a
                                                                                              council in 999. vocational and technical education
                          platform for further education, vocational training                                                                                                                                      Government 6,902                                                               Primary 6,558
                                                                                              is specifically coordinated through the Australian
                          and employment                                                                                                                                                                           72%                                                                            71%
                                                                                              national training Authority ministerial council
                     – Vocational preparation – based on the                                  (AntA minco).5
                          identification of vocational interests and skills
                          that prepare individuals for employment                             responsibility for education funding is split, with
                                                                                              the State and territory governments having primary
                     – Social skills – based on the development of
                                                                                              responsibility for funding government schools
                          behavioural management, communication                                                                                                             Figure 4 Education system structure by jurisdiction 20
                                                                                              including preschool, primary and secondary school
                          and interpersonal skills that allow individuals
                                                                                              and vocational training, and the commonwealth
                          to interact with other people and to build
                                                                                              government having primary responsibility for                                   Year Level                                    ACT                NSW                  VIC                TAS              QLD             SA              WA            NT
                          friendships and personal relationships
                                                                                              funding non-government/independent schools,                                    Pre-Year 1                              Kindergarten Kindergarten                Prep.School         Prep.School      Preparatory      Reception       Pre-Primary   Transition
                     – engagement as a citizen – based on an                                  registered training providers and tertiary
                          understanding of individual rights and                                                                                                             Year 1               Curriculum             Primary             Primary             Primary            Primary          Primary        Primary          Primary       Primary
                                                                                              education.6
                          responsibilities, social institutions and values                                                                                                                                               School              School              School             School           School         School           School        School
                                                                                              in most Australian States and territories schooling                            Year 2
                     – emotional and spiritual wellbeing – based on the
                                                                                              is compulsory for children aged between six and 5
                          development of a sense of personal and cultural                                                                                                    Year 3
                                                                                              years8 with compulsory education ending in year
                          identity and self-worth
                                                                                              9 or year 0. preschool attendance is not currently
                     – Physical health – based on an understanding                                                                                                           Year 4
                                                                                              compulsory.9
                          of how to manage personal and family health,
                                                                                              there are some minor variations in the structure                               Year 5
                          maintain a healthy environment and access
                          available services to meet health needs.                            of the schooling systems across the different
                                                                                                                                                                             Year 6
                                                                                              States and territories in terms of the delineation
                                                                                              between primary and secondary schooling and the                                Year 7                                     High School        High School         Secondary         High School                                                        Middle
                                                                                              terminology that is used to refer to different student                                                                                                             School                                                                             School
                                                                                              groups (particularly in the preschool, middle school                           Year 8                                                                                                                High School     Secondary/       High School
                                                                                              and senior school years). however, the underlying                                                                                                                                                                    High School
                                                                                              education system is similar.                                                   Year 9

                                                                                                                                                                             Year 10                                                                                                                                                              High School

                                                                                                                                                                             Year 11                                      College                                                   College

                                                                                                                                                                           Year 12
                                                                                                   national report to parliament on indigenous education and
                                                                                                   training 00. department of education, Science and training.
                                                                                                   commonwealth of Australia, 00, pp.–. (deSt 00)
                                                                                              5
                                                                                                   ibid., pp.–.
                                                                                              6                                                                                                                            Preschool                  Primary school                  Secondary school             Category name
                                                                                                 deSt 00, pp.–-.
                          council for the Australian federation. The Future of Schooling in
                                                                                              8
                          Australia. federalist paper . April 007, p.7. (cAf 007)              Act, QLd, nSW, vic, nt 6–5 years, tAS and SA 6–6 years, WA 6–7
                                                                                                 years.
                          ibid.; Steering committee for the review of government Service                                                                                                                           7
                                                                                              9                                                                                                                        Australian Bureau of Statistics. Schools report. cat. no. .0.
                          provision. Report on Government Services 2007, Indigenous                ScrgSp 007, p.6.. the term preschool has been used to refer to
                          Compendium. canberra: productivity commission ScrgSp, 007,              preschool in Act and nSW or kindergarten in QLd, vic, tAS, SA and                                                    canberra: ABS, 006, pp., 7–8, 6. (ABS .0)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   0
                          p.. (ScrgSp compendium 007)                                           WA and transition in nt.                                                                                             deSt 00, p.0.


6                                                                                                                                  Our Children, Our Future –         A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                             7
B A c Kg r o u n d




                                                                                                                                                                          . the indigenous student population



All States and territories provide basic primary and                      tertiary education is provided in all States and                                                .. overall indigenous population –                                           Figure 6 Indigenous population by State and Territory23
secondary education. Academic and vocational                              territories as is vocational education and training                                             a contextual overview
streams are available in all jurisdictions. Although                      (vet) or technical and further education (tAfe).
                                                                                                                                                                          census data in 006 indicate that Australia has
curriculum components are similar, they are not                           vet and tAfe training options can be accessed
                                                                                                                                                                          an estimated indigenous population of slightly
currently standardised, and so there is some                              through school-based programs or as a form of post-                                                                                                                             WA 15%                                                       NT 13%
                                                                                                                                                                          over half a million (57,00) people, equating
variation from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, and school                   secondary education. they typically target trade-
                                                                                                                                                                          to approximately .5% of the total Australian                                   TAS 3%
to school. differing tertiary entrance assessment                         based careers that do not require a university degree.
                                                                                                                                                                          population.
systems are applied; however, cross-jurisdictional                        typically vet or tAfe courses take two to three years                                                                                                                           SA 5%
recognition is given to the different systems.                            to complete.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          VIC 6%                                                     QLD 28%
post-compulsory education is regulated within the                         tertiary and vocational qualifications are transferable                                                                                                                         ACT 1%
Australian Qualifications framework (AQf) that                            between all States and territories.
provides a system of national qualifications in                                                                                                                                                                                                           NSW 29%
schools, vocational education and training and the
higher education sector.
                                                                                                                                                                          Figure 4 Education system structure by jurisdiction 20
Figure 5 Educational pathways map 21
                                                                                                                                                                           Indigenous Population                            NT                QLD             NSW                 ACT                 VIC              SA          TAS      WA
                                                                   School-based                                                          Non School-based
                                                                                                                                                                           Approximate Population                        67,236             144,816          149,988              5,172             31,032           25,860       15,516   77,580
                                                                     Pathways                                                                Pathways
                                                                                                                                                                          Total Indigenous Population                      13%                 28%             29%                 1%                 6%               5%          3%       15%
         School-Based                            School-Based                 Extension        Special Needs         Alternative               Alternative
       Academic Stream                            VET Stream                   Learning          Support              Learning                  Learning                   % State or Territory Population                31.6%               3.6%             2.2%               1.2%               0.6%             1.7%        3.4%     3.8%
                                                                                                                      Programs                  Programs

     Standard school                     Vocational education               Extension         Specialist teaching   Specialist            Specialist programs
     certificate curriculum              certificate, applied learning      learning          support provided      programs that         that provide support
     or equivalent                       and industry internships           programs          to high-need or       provide remedial      to disengaged or at-risk                                                                                        Figure 7 Indigenous population distribution based on
                                                                                                                                                                          the indigenous population is growing at
                                                                            provided to       at-risk students      education             students to re-engage                                                                                           standard remoteness scales26
     ACT – Year 12 Certificate           QLD, VIC and SA –                  gifted students   (e.g. Aboriginal      support to            students in school,
                                                                                                                                                                          approximately % per annum, twice the rate of the
                                         accredited VET from Year 10                          Education Workers,    at-risk and           provide alternative             general population.
     QLD – Senior Certificate            and from Year 9 in WA                                Youth Counsellors)    gifted students       education in a non-
     NSW – Higher School                                                                                                                  school environment,             the majority of indigenous people in Australia live                             Remote/Very remote                                       Major cities
                                                                                              1:1 services                                                                                                                                                24%                                                             31%
     Certificate                                                                              provided to high-                           support transitions             in major cities and urban centres (%). the balance
                                                                                              need or at-risk                             from school to work             of the indigenous population is reasonably evenly
     VIC – Victorian
     Certificate of Education                                                                 groups                                                                      distributed across regional and remote areas. Just
                                                                                              (e.g. mentoring,                                                            under a quarter (%) of the indigenous population
     TAS – Tasmanian                                                                          case management,
     Certificate of Education                                                                 individual learning                                                         lives in remote or very remote locations.5
     SA – South Australian                                                                    pathways etc.)
     Certificate of Education           Dual              Targeted
     WA – Western Australian            Curriculum –      Curriculum –
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Outer regional                                         Inner regional
     Certificate of Education           offered as        offered
                                        a parallel        through                                                                                                                                                                                         23%                                                              22%
     NT – Northern Territory            track to the      specialist
     Certificate of Education           academic          schools (e.g.
                                        stream within     technical                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                                               Australian Bureau of Statistics. Population Distribution, Aboriginal
                                        a school          colleges)                                                                                                            and Torres Strait Islander Australians. cat. no. 705.0. canberra: ABS,
                                                                                                                                                                               006. (ABS 705.0)
                                                                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                                                               ABS 705.0.
                                                                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                                                               ministerial council for education, employment, training and
                                                                                                                                                                               youth Affairs AeSoc Senior officials Working party on indigenous
                                        Pathway to         Pathway to                                                                  Pathway to    Pathway                   education. Australian Directions in Indigenous Education 2005–2008
     Pathway to connect                 connect to         connect to                                                                  reconnect     to enter                  mceetyA, 006, pp., 5. (mceetyA 006)
                                        further            further                                                                     with          employment           5
     to further education                                                                                                                                                      ABS 705.0. the remoteness structure shown here is based on the
     or employment                      education or       vocational                                                                  schoolingt                              Australian Standard geographical classification (ASgc) used by
                                        employment         training or                                                                                                         the ABS. there are five major categories of remoteness Area: major
                                                           employment                                                                                                          cities of Australia, inner regional Australia, outer regional Australia,
                                                                                                                                                                               remote Australia and very remote Australia, together with a
                                                                                                                                                                               residual migratory category.
                                                                                                                                                                        6
     Social ventures Australia. Big picture company Australia: Briefing                                                                                                        ABS 705.0.
     paper, January 007, p.. (SvA 007)

8                                                                                                                                     Our Children, Our Future –    A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                      9
B A c Kg r o u n d




Figure 8 Comparison Indigenous and non-Indigenous population age profile27                                  the indigenous population overall is younger than                               Figure 10 Indigenous versus non-Indigenous secondary school student population profile35
Estimated resident population by age                                                                        the non-indigenous population.
Males                                Age groups                            Females                                                                                                          14                                                                                                   300

                                                75+
                                                                                                            the median age of the Aboriginal and torres Strait
                                                                                                            islander population ( years) is considerably
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   School context
                                                                                                                                                                                            12
                                               70–74                                                        lower than that of the non-indigenous Australian                                                                                                                                     250
                                                                                                                                                                                                                11.8                                                                                                263.0          260.8    258.4
                                               65–69                                                        population (6 years). Almost half of the indigenous
                                                                                                                                                                                            10                             11.0                                                                                                                             26.7% Drop
                                                                                                            population is approaching or of school age.8                                                                                                                                        200                                                228.0
                                               60–64
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       9.4                  68.6% Drop in
                                               55–59                                                        the lower age profile of the indigenous population                              8                                                                                                                                                                192.7
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            student numbers
                                                                                                            has implications for the proportion of the population                                                                                                                                150
                                               50–54                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    161.1
                                                                                                            that is (or should be) at school and the support                                6                                                       6.8
                                               45–49                                                        services required to meet the needs of this group.9
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 100
                                               40–44                                                                                                                                        4
                                                                                                                                                                                                    4.6
                                               35–39                                                                                                                                                                                                            3.7
                                                                                                                                                                                            2                                                                                                    50
                                               30–34                                                        .. Student population profile                                                                                                                                2.1
                                               25–29                                                        twenty-seven per cent of the total indigenous                                   0                                                                                                    0                                                                       18.5
                                               20–24                                                        population (0,8 people) were enrolled as full-
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Year 7        Year 8   Year 9      Year 10 Year 11 Year 12 Ungraded                                  Year 7       Year 8         Year 9   Year 10 Year 11 Year 12 Ungraded
                                               15–19                                                        time students in 006, making up approximately %
                                                                                                            of the total full-time student population.0                                                   Indigenous                                                                                           Non-Indigenous
                                               10–14
                                                5–9                                                         the majority of those indigenous students (6.8%)
                                                                                                            were enrolled in primary school (compared to 57.%
                                                0–4
                                                                                                            for the non-indigenous student population).
7     6     5        4   3   2     1     0       %       0       1     2      3    4       5   6        7                                                                                   the majority of indigenous students are enrolled in
                                                                                                            over 90% of indigenous students were aged 5
                                                                                                                                                                                            government schools.6
        Indigenous               Non-Indigenous                                                             years or less (5 years of age being the age at which
                                                                                                            compulsory schooling ends for most students in                                  in most cases indigenous students make up only
                                                                                                            year 9 or 0). the bias in the age of the indigenous                          a very small percentage of their school’s student
Figure 9 Indigenous secondary student population34                                                          student population reflects the higher rate at which                            base (which is not unexpected given the size of
                                                                                                            indigenous students drop out of school following the                            the overall indigenous population). Approximately
19 years and over                            12 years and under                                             completion of compulsory schooling in year 9 or 0.                           three quarters (7.9%) of Australian schools provide
318                                                       5,666
                                                                                                                                                                                            education to one or more indigenous students and
18 years                                                 13 years                                                                                                                           in over half of those schools indigenous students
                                                                                                            7
723                                                       11,504                                                 Australian Bureau of Statistics. Population Characteristics of
                                                                                                                                                                                            represent 5% or less of the school population.7
                                                                                                                 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians. cat. no. 7.0.
17 years                                                                                                         canberra: ABS, 00. (ABS 7.0)
3,560                                                                                                       8                                                                              the number of indigenous staff operating in schools
                                                                                                                 ABS 7.0; ABS 70.0; department of health and Ageing.
                                                                                                                 Department of Health and Ageing Factbook 2006. (dhA 006)                  is also low. Although the number of indigenous
                                                                                                            9
16 years
                                                                                                                 mceetyA 006, p..                                                        teachers is increasing, the proportion of indigenous
                                                                                                            0
6,690                                                    14 years                                                ABS .0, p.8.                                                          teachers and staff working in individual schools is
                                                          11,225                                            
                                                                                                                 ibid., p.7.                                                               usually smaller than the proportion of indigenous
                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                 ABS .0, p.7.
15 years                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                                                                            students.8
                                                                                                                 ScrgSp 007, pp.7.–7..
9,683                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                 ABS .0, p.7.
Figure 9 Indigenous secondary student population 34


Indigenous Student                   12 Years         13 years       14 Years     15 Years     16 Years      17 Years           18 Years     19 Years        Total          % Total
Population                          and under                                                                                                and over

Primary School                         90,396           598            18              –            –               –              –              –         91,012           64.8%

Secondary School                       5,666          11,504         11,225        9,683        6,690            3,560            723           318         49,369           35.2%
                                                                                                                                                                                            5
                                                                                                                                                                                                 ABS .0, p.7.
Total                                  96,062         12,102         11,243        9,683        6,690            3,560            723           318        140,381           100%           6
                                                                                                                                                                                                 mceetyA 006, p.5; SrcgSp compendium 007, p..
                                                                                                                                                                                            7
Percentage of Population               68.4%           8.6%           8.0%         6.9%            4.8%          2.6%            0.5%           0.2%         100%               –                ScrgSp 007, p.7.5.
                                                                                                                                                                                            8
                                                                                                                                                                                                 ibid., p..


0                                                                                                                                                    Our Children, Our Future –       A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                                
B A c Kg r o u n d




. government-based indigenous-specific
education initiatives


Australian governments have recognised the need        Break Out text 2 – national Aboriginal and torres Strait islander education Policy Goals                                                                                                                               pursuant to these goals commonwealth and State
to address disparities between indigenous and non-                                                                                                                                                                                                                              and territory government policy has sought to
indigenous students’ education outcomes.9                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      improve/strengthen:
                                                              involvement of Aboriginal and torres Strait islander people in educational                        equity of educational participation
Specific government policy objectives in relation to          decision-making                                                                                                                                                                                                   – preschool access and attendance as a
                                                                                                                                                          0. to achieve the participation of Aboriginal and torres Strait islander children
indigenous education are set out in the national                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      precondition of ‘school readiness’
                                                         .   to establish effective arrangements for the participation of Aboriginal                         in preschool education for a period similar to that for other Australian
Aboriginal and torres Strait islander education                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 – school attendance
                                                              and torres Strait islander parents and community members in decisions                           children.
policy (Aep). this policy has been endorsed by the
                                                              regarding the planning, delivery and evaluation of preschool, primary and                                                                                                                                         – the quality of school leadership and teaching
commonwealth, State and territory governments                                                                                                             . to achieve the participation of all Aboriginal and torres Strait islander
and forms the foundation of all government                    secondary education services for their children.                                                children in compulsory schooling.                                                                                 – the design and delivery of culturally relevant
indigenous education programs. it sets out                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          and capability appropriate curriculum and
                                                         .   to increase the number of Aboriginal and torres Strait islander people                      . to achieve the participation of Aboriginal and torres Strait islander people
long-term national goals for the improvement                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          teaching approaches
                                                              employed as educational administrators, teachers, curriculum advisers,                          in post-secondary education, in technical and further education, and in
of indigenous education. these goals have been                teachers assistants, home–school liaison officers and other education                                                                                                                                             – literacy and numeracy outcomes
                                                                                                                                                              higher education, at rates commensurate with those of other Australians in
legislated for in the indigenous education (targeted          workers, including community people engaged in teaching Aboriginal                                                                                                                                                – post-school transitions into employment through
                                                                                                                                                              those sectors.
Assistance) Act 000. in particular, the Aep aims to          and torres Strait islander culture, history and contemporary society, and                                                                                                                                               the delivery of improved school and non-school-
make the level of education access, participation             Aboriginal and torres Strait islander languages.                                                  equitable and appropriate educational outcomes                                                                        based vocational and employment pathways
and outcomes for indigenous people equal to that
                                                         .   to establish effective arrangements for the participation of Aboriginal                     . to provide adequate preparation of Aboriginal and torres Strait islander                                          – school, family and community partnerships
of other Australians.0
                                                              and torres Strait islander students and community members in decisions                          children through preschool education for the schooling years ahead.                                                     to support improved school attendance,
                                                              regarding the planning, delivery and evaluation of post-school education                                                                                                                                                engagement, retention and attainment.
                                                                                                                                                          . to enable Aboriginal and torres Strait islander attainment of skills to the
                                                              services, including technical and further education colleges and higher                         same standard as other Australian students throughout the compulsory                                              examples of the above activities are reflected in
                                                              education institutions.                                                                         schooling years.                                                                                                  commonwealth government funded initiatives
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                under the national indigenous english Literacy and
                                                         .   to increase the number of Aboriginal and torres Strait islander people                      5. to enable Aboriginal and torres Strait islander students to attain the                                            numeracy Strategy (nieLnS) (e.g. Scaffolding Literacy
                                                              employed as administrators, teachers, researchers and student services                          successful completion of year  or equivalent at the same rates as for                                           programs) and the indigenous education Strategic
                                                              officers in technical and further education colleges and higher education                       other Australian students.                                                                                        initiative program (ieSip) (e.g. What Works and dare
                                                              institutions.
                                                                                                                                                          6. to enable Aboriginal and torres Strait islander students to attain the same                                       to Lead programs) implemented under the previous
                                                         5.   to provide education and training services to develop the skills of                             graduation rates from award courses in technical and further education,                                           commonwealth government.
                                                              Aboriginal and torres Strait islander people to participate in educational                      and in higher education, as for other Australians.                                                                ongoing commitment to those areas is reflected
                                                              decision-making.
                                                                                                                                                          7. to develop programs to support the maintenance and continued use of                                               at a national level in the recommendations to the
                                                         6.   to develop arrangements for the provisions of independent advice from                           Aboriginal and torres Strait islander languages.                                                                  ministerial council on education, employment,
                                                              Aboriginal and torres Strait islander communities regarding educational                                                                                                                                           training and youth Affairs (mceetyA) for the 005–
                                                              decisions at regional, State, territory and national levels.                                8. to provide community education services which enable Aboriginal                                                   008 quadrennium endorsed by the ministerial
                                                                                                                                                              and torres Strait islander people to develop the skills to manage the                                             council.5 these recommendations identified six
                                                              equality of access to education services                                                        development of their communities.                                                                                 areas for focus in indigenous education.
                                                         7.   to ensure that Aboriginal and torres Strait islander children of pre-primary                9. to enable the attainment of proficiency in the english language and
                                                              school have access to preschool services on a basis comparable to that                          numeracy competencies by Aboriginal and torres Strait islander adults with
                                                              available to other Australian children of the same age.                                         limited or no educational experience.
                                                         8.   to ensure that all Aboriginal and torres Strait islander children have local                0. to enable Aboriginal and torres Strait islander students at all levels of
                                                              access to primary and secondary schooling.                                                      education to have an appreciation of their history, culture and identity.
                                                         9.   to ensure equitable access of Aboriginal and torres Strait islander                         . to provide all Australian students with an understanding of and respect for
                                                              people to post-compulsory secondary schooling, to technical and further                         Aboriginal and torres Strait islander traditional and contemporary cultures.
                                                              education, and to higher education.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     mceetyA 006; national indigenous education and training Strategy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     005–008. http://www.dest.gov.au (ietS); national indigenous
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     english Literacy and numeracy Strategy. http://www.dest.gov.au
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     (nieLnS)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     nieLnS
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     ietS
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                5
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     mceetyA 006, pp.5–0. cross-government endorsement of the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     principles outlined in the above document means that they are
9
     cAf 007, p.; mceeytA 006, p..                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              unlikely to change as a result of the recent transition in federal
0
     deSt 00, pp.– and 9–50.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  government. it is not yet clear whether the approach to how those
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   areas are addressed through federal government policy, funding
     ibid., pp.9–50.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              and coordination mechanisms will change.


                                                                                                                 Our Children, Our Future –        A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                                       
B A c Kg r o u n d




table 1 – Australian directions in indigenous education 2005–2008 6


     Focus Areas              identified Priorities
                                                                                                                                                      4. Indigenous education
     early childhood
     education
                              – provide all indigenous children with access to two years of high-quality early
                                childhood education prior to formal schooling
                              – develop and implement educational programs that respect and value
                                indigenous culture, languages (including Aboriginal english) and contexts;
                                                                                                                                                         outcomes
                                explicitly teach standard Australian english and prepare indigenous children
                                for formal schooling                                                                                                                   this section looks at the status of indigenous
                              – provide opportunities for indigenous parents and care givers to develop skills                                                         education outcomes. it outlines the performance of
                                to support the development of their children’s literacy skills and to allow                                                            indigenous students against a range of education
                                parents and care givers to play an active role in the education of their children
                                                                                                                                                                       outcomes including school attendance, retention,
     School and community – promote the value of formal education                                                                                                      performance, post-school qualifications, labour
     educational partnerships – encourage the development of school, parent and community partnerships
                                                                                                                                                                       force participation and employment, socio-
                                that encourage indigenous parents and communities to work with schools to
                                address local attendance, retention and attainment issues
                                                                                                                                                                       economic status and individual wellbeing.
                              – increase parent and community involvement in the design and delivery of
                                indigenous schooling (particularly in schools with significant indigenous
                                student cohorts or local indigenous communities)
     Schooling curriculum     – tailor curriculum to meet student requirements (i.e. through the design and
     and approach               delivery of culturally relevant and capability appropriate curricula) while
                                maintaining high educational standards
     School leadership        – include learning outcomes for indigenous students as a key part of the
                                accountability framework for school principals and teaching staff
                              – review and improve incentives that attract and retain high-quality principals
                                to schools with significant indigenous student cohorts or local indigenous
                                communities
                              – implement strategies that recognise high-performing schools and principals
                              – provide accredited school leadership and teacher-training programs that
                                develop school leaders
     Quality teaching         – provide accredited pre- and in-service teacher training that includes cultural
                                awareness and specialist teaching skills tailored to indigenous student needs
                                (e.g. english as a Second Language)
                              – review and improve incentives that attract and retain high-quality teachers
     pathways to training,    – design and deliver mentoring, counselling and work-readiness programs that
     employment and             provide culturally inclusive and intensive vocational development support in
     higher education           secondary school to assist indigenous students to transition from school into
                                post-school education, training or employment
                              – improve vocational learning opportunities for indigenous students from year
                                0 onwards
                              – expand trade-based training
                              – Strengthen school to tertiary education support programs




6
     mceetyA 006, pp.5–0.


                                                                                                                  Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS   5
i n d i g e n o u S e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S




‘While Indigenous student outcomes have improved incrementally                   the outcomes of effective education can be                              the achievement of higher order outcomes is                                    Break out 3 – Overview of the current state of indigenous education outcomes56
over recent decades, marked disparities continue to exist between                considered at multiple levels. At the most basic                        dependent on the achievement of the lower order
                                                                                 level education engages students and encourages                         outcomes on which they are built.
Indigenous and non-Indigenous student outcomes. Poor results limit               participation in learning, which is reflected in                                                                                                           indigenous Australians:
                                                                                                                                                         it is important to acknowledge that there has been
the post-school options and life choices of students, perpetuating               school attendance and retention. At the next level                                                                                                         – are less likely to get a preschool education
                                                                                                                                                         improvement in indigenous education outcomes
intergenerational cycles of social and economic disadvantage.’ 7                it promotes the development of skills and the
                                                                                                                                                         over the last decade. indigenous participation in                                  – are well behind in literacy and numeracy skills development before
                                                                                 acquisition of knowledge, which is reflected in
                                                                                                                                                         education has increased across all education levels                                  they leave primary school
                                                                                 student achievement and performance. Student
                                                                                                                                                         (schools, universities, and vocational education                                   – have less access to secondary school in the communities in which
                                                                                 performance in turn influences the capacity of
                                                                                                                                                         and training) as has the number of students                                          they live
                                                                                 students to access post-school qualifications. these
                                                                                                                                                         graduating from year  and attaining post-
                                                                                 qualifications, combined with school performance,                                                                                                          – are absent from school two to three times more often than
                                                                                                                                                         school qualifications.8 however, this progress
                                                                                 influence labour force participation and                                                                                                                     other students
                                                                                                                                                         has been slow and significant disparities between
                                                                                 employment, which in turn influence socio-economic
                                                                                                                                                         the education outcomes of indigenous and non-                                      – leave school much younger
                                                                                 status and individual health and wellbeing.
                                                                                                                                                         indigenous students continue to exist.9
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            – are less than half as likely to go through to year 
                                                     Figure 11 Education outcomes – conceptual framework                                                 in Australia today indigenous students at all levels                               – are far more likely to be doing bridging and basic entry programs in
                                                                                                                                                         continue to experience worse education outcomes                                      universities and vocational education and training institutions
                                                                                                                                                         than non-indigenous students.50 indigenous
                                                     Outcomes                                                                                            students demonstrate lower school attendance,                                      – obtain fewer and lower-level education qualifications
                                                                                                                                                         retention and achievement than non-indigenous                                      – are far less likely to get a job, even when they have the same
                                                     Sixth Order    Curriculum                                                                           students across all age groups and all States and                                    qualifications as others
                                                                                                        Individual
                                                                                                        Wellbeing
                                                                                                                                                         territories.5 post-school qualification, labour                                   – earn less income
                                                                                                                                                         force participation and employment rates are also
                                                                                                   Socio-economic                                        lower.5 indigenous employees are more likely                                      – have poorer housing
                                                     Fifth Order
                                                                                                       Statue                                            to be employed in lower skilled occupations than                                   – experience more and graver health problems
                                                                                                                                                         non-indigenous employees, indigenous employees’
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            – have higher mortality rates than other Australians
                                                     Fourth Order
                                                                                             Labour Force Participation                                  incomes are likely to be lower5 , their health is
                                                                                                 and Employment                                          generally poorer, their life expectancy is lower and
                                                                                                                                                         they are more likely to live in communities that are
                                                                                                                                                         subject to social dysfunction.5                                               the need to address the gap between indigenous
                                                     Third Order                              Post-School Qualification
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        and non-indigenous outcomes across each of the
                                                                                                                                                         indigenous children in remote areas tend to have
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        above areas has been recognised in the coAg
                                                                                                                                                         even lower rates of school attendance, retention and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        national reform Agenda and the mceetyA
                                                     Second Order                       School Performance / Achievement                                 achievement, and lower post-school outcomes than
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        quadrennial statement on national directions in
                                                                                                                                                         those in non-remote areas.55
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        indigenous education 005–008.57
                                                     First Order            School Attendance                        School Retention                                                                                                   Sub-sections . – .7 following provide more
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        information in relation to the current state of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        indigenous education outcomes against each of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        the key outcome areas identified in figure  at
                                                                                                                                                         8
                                                                                                                                                              ABS 70.0; ABS .0; mceetyA, 006, pp., .                          left. A discussion of the factors contributing to
                                                                                                                                                         9
                                                                                                                                                               mceetyA 006, p..                                                      these outcomes is set out in Section 5. A range of
                                                                                                                                                         50
                                                                                                                                                              ScrgSp overview 007, p..                                                interventions to address these issues is outlined in
                                                                                                                                                         5
                                                                                                                                                              ScrgSp 007, pp.–.                                                    Section 6.
                                                                                                                                                         5
                                                                                                                                                              ibid., pp.–6, ., ..
                                                                                                                                                         5
                                                                                                                                                              Australian Bureau of Statistics. Labour Force Characteristics of
                                                                                                                                                              Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islander Australians. cat. no. 687.0.
                                                                                                                                                              canberra: ABS, 006. (ABS 687.0)
                                                                                                                                                         5
                                                                                                                                                              ScrgSp overview, pp., 8–; ABS 70.0.
                                                                                                                                                         55
                                                                                                                                                              ScrgSp 007, p.6.9.
                                                                                                                                                         56
                                                                                                                                                              national indigenous english Literacy and numeracy Strategy.
                                                                                                                                                              Supporting Statement from Indigenous Supporters of the NIELNS.
                                                                                                                                                              http://www.dest.gov.au (nieLnS SS)
                                                                                                                                                         57
                                                                                                                                                              ScrgSp 007, p.6.; coAg national reform Agenda: Human Capital,
                                                                                 7
                                                                                                                                                              Competition and Regulatory Reform, communique . canberra, July
                                                                                      cAf 007, p..                                                         006. (coAg 006); mceetyA 006, pp.–.


6                                                                                                                     Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                            7
i n d i g e n o u S e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S




. Attendance



                                                                                              .. preschool attendance                                                         .. School attendance                                                        Breakout text 5 – indigenous student perspectives on
   Outcome Areas                       Key Performance indicators                                                                                                                                                                                               school and school attendance 75
                                                                                              research indicates that access to early childhood                                  research indicates that regular school attendance
   preschool participation             – indigenous children aged  to 5 years are            education has a positive impact on education                                       is important, with high levels of absenteeism being
   (enrolment) 58                        marginally less likely to be enrolled in preschool   outcomes. children who attend preschool for                                        associated with reduced learning and retention                                      ‘I did actually [turn up at school] … every day but
                                         (5%) than non-indigenous children (9%)             more than one year show statistically significant                                  outcomes.69                                                                         we [sic] didn’t learn much.
   preschool attendance 59 – preschool attendance is significantly lower                      improvements in performance in later school years                                                                                                                      I ended up in the top class for Years 7 and 8 even
                                                                                                                                                                                 As with preschool, anecdotal evidence suggests
                             for indigenous children than for non-                            compared to students not attending preschool. 66                                                                                                                       though I couldn’t read or write.
                                                                                                                                                                                 that attendance rates are significantly lower for
                             indigenous children                                              data indicate that indigenous children are                                         indigenous students than for non-indigenous                                         A typical day at high school involved my cousins
   School readiness        60
                                       – indigenous children who do attend preschool do       marginally less likely to be enrolled in preschool than                            students.70 the number of days absent for                                           and I taking some golf clubs to school and hiding
                                         not demonstrate the same level of literacy and       non-indigenous children. in 005 approximately 5%                                 indigenous students has been estimated to be two                                    them in the bushes early in the morning. We
                                         numeracy skills as non-indigenous children           of indigenous children aged three to five years were                               to three times greater than for non-indigenous                                      would then go and sign the attendance book in
                                                                                              enrolled in preschool compared to approximately                                    students.7                                                                         the office and disappear to the golf course for
   School participation                – School participation rates for indigenous            9% of non-indigenous children. 67
                                                                                                                                                                                 the gap in school attendance appears early in                                       the day. At the end of the school day about 3pm
   (enrolment)                           children aged 5 to 8 years (years  to ) (97%)
                                                                                              the ability to assess attendance – as distinct from                                primary school and widens in the early years of                                     we would go back to school and sign out the
                                         are marginally higher than those for non-
                                                                                              enrolments – on a national level is limited due to                                 secondary school.7                                                                 attendance book … The official records at a school
                                         indigenous children (9%) 6
                                                                                              constraints in existing data collection techniques                                                                                                                     like this indicate a high attendance record, but the
                                       – indigenous school participation rates through                                                                                           rates of non-attendance (absenteeism) are reported                                  reality, of course, is that kids just sign the book
                                                                                              that focus on enrolments rather than attendance.
                                         higher primary and secondary school are lower                                                                                           to be higher in more isolated, traditionally oriented                               and then disappear.
                                                                                              Where attendance data are collected, variations in
                                         than those for non-indigenous students 6                                                                                               communities.7
                                                                                              the ways in which absences are defined and recorded                                                                                                                    There wasn’t much learning going on. In fact,
                                       – indigenous participation rates drop off              make comprehensive analysis difficult.
                                                                                                                                                                                 Breakout text 4 – Factors impacting attendance in                                   there wasn’t really anyone in the classroom, and
                                         much more rapidly than non-indigenous
                                                                                              Although available attendance data are limited,                                    remote schools7                                                                    nobody seemed to care about that much.’ 75
                                         student numbers following the completion of
                                         compulsory schooling in year 9 or 0 6              anecdotal evidence suggests that attendance rates                                                                                                                      An indigenous student describing his experience
                                                                                              for indigenous students enrolled in preschool are                                                                                                                      at school prior to accepting a scholarship at St
   School attendance                   – School attendance is also lower for indigenous                                                                                             A study of indigenous student attendance in
                                                                                              significantly lower than those for non-indigenous                                                                                                                      Joseph’s college hunters hill where at the age of
                                         students with indigenous students likely to                                                                                                remote schools in the central desert region
                                                                                              students. 68                                                                                                                                                           5 he learned to read and write for the first time.
                                         be absent from primary and secondary school                                                                                                of Australia (desert Schools project, national
                                         two to three times more often than non-              the lower attendance rate, combined with the lower                                    Language and Literacy institute of Australia 996)
                                         indigenous students 6                               enrolment rate, translates into a significant disparity                               reported that:                                                              Lower attendance rates have been identified as a key
                                                                                              in real access to early childhood education.
                                       – the gap in school attendance appears early in                                                                                              ‘[I]n all communities but one, student attendance                           factor in the poorer educational outcomes achieved
                                         primary school and widens in the early years                                                                                               was low and irregular, with sometimes as many                               by indigenous students.76 it should be noted,
                                         of secondary school 65                                                                                                                     unexplained absences as attendances.’                                       however, that even where attendance levels are in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                line with overall community standards, indigenous
                                                                                                                                                                                    In some cases variations in attendance in remote
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                student outcomes tend to remain lower than those
                                                                                                                                                                                    communities have been mapped to seasonal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                of non-indigenous students (see Sub-section . in
                                                                                                                                                                                    factors – suggesting that improved attendance
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                relation to Student performance and Achievement).
                                                                                                                                                                                    levels could be achieved by adjusting school
                                                                                                                                                                                    calendars and timetables to better fit with
                                                                                              58
                                                                                                                                                                                    community practices.
                                                                                                   ScrgSp overview 007, p.9.
                                                                                              59                                                                                    ‘Attendance typically rises … during the wet season
                                                                                                   ScrgSp 007, pp.6.–6.
                                                                                              60
                                                                                                   mceetyA 006, p.8.                                                              as people move from the homeland centre to
                                                                                              6
                                                                                                   ScrgSp overview 007, p.0.                                                      (the regional centre) and then falls during the dry
                                                                                              6
                                                                                                   ScrgSp compendium 007, p.7.                                                    season as people disperse and become involved in                            69
                                                                                              6                                                                                                                                                                     Bourke et al. 000, pp.ff; ScrgSp 007, p.6..
                                                                                                   ScrgSp overview 007, p.0.                                                      hunting, gathering and ceremonial activity.’                                70
                                                                                              6                                                                                                                                                                     ScrgSp 007, p.6.6; Zubrick et al. 006, pp.ff.
                                                                                                   Zubrick et al. 006, pp.ff; Bourke c, rigby K, Burden J. Better                                                                                           7
                                                                                                   Practice in School Attendance: Improving the School Attendance of                                                                                                 Zubrick et al. 006, pp.ff; Bourke et al. 000, pp., .
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                7
                                                                                                   Indigenous Students. commonwealth department of education,                                                                                                        Bourke et al. 000, p..
                                                                                                   training and youth Affairs, 000, pp., . (Bourke et al. 000)                                                                                             7
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     ibid., p..
                                                                                              65                                                                                                                                                                7
                                                                                                   Bourke et al. 000, p..                                                                                                                                         Bourke et al. 000, pp.–.
                                                                                              66                                                                                                                                                                75
                                                                                                   ScrgSp 007, p.6.; Kronemann m. Universal Preschool Education                                                                                                    human rights and equal opportunity commission. report of the
                                                                                                   for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children. Aeu Briefing paper                                                                                            national inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and torres Strait
                                                                                                   007, p.. (Kronemann 007a)                                                                                                                                      islander children from their families. commonwealth government
                                                                                              67
                                                                                                   ScrgSp 007, p.6.5.                                                                                                                                               of Australia, 997, p.7. (hreoc 997)
                                                                                              68                                                                                                                                                                76
                                                                                                   ScrgSp 007, pp.6.–6..                                                                                                                                          Bourke et al. 000, pp.ff.


8                                                                                                                                    Our Children, Our Future –            A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                       9
i n d i g e n o u S e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S




. retention                                                                                                                                                                      . Student performance and achievement



                                                                                                for most students, compulsory schooling ends during                                                                                                                                                      numeracy and literacy have been recognised as
   Outcome Areas                       Key Performance indicators                               year 9 or 0. compulsory schooling requirements                                       Outcome Areas                       Key Performance indicators                                                     important contributors to school attendance and
   School retention and                – indigenous students leave school earlier than          are reflected in relatively high school enrolment and                                 Literacy and numeracy 9 – indigenous students perform significantly below                                         as key indicators for student performance, years 0
   completion                            non-indigenous students                                apparent retention rates for both indigenous and                                                                 mainstream numeracy and literacy levels                                                 and  retention, post-secondary education and
                                                                                                non-indigenous students through to year 9, although                                                                                                                                                      employment. 9
                                       – in 005 % of the indigenous population had                                                                                                                                     – indigenous student performance against years
                                                                                                indigenous retention levels remain lower than those
                                         completed year  compared to 7% of the non-                                                                                                                                      , 5 and 7 national literacy and numeracy                                    disparities in indigenous and non-indigenous
                                                                                                for non-indigenous students.8
                                         indigenous population 77                                                                                                                                                           benchmarks is generally about 0% lower than                                 student learning performance are identifiable from
                                       – in 006 the retention rate from years 7/8              grade retention data between primary and                                                                                    the national average                                                         year  and are maintained throughout primary and
                                         (commencement of secondary school) to year 9           secondary school is limited; however, anecdotal                                                                           – over 50% of indigenous year 7 students do not                                middle school. 95
                                         for indigenous students was 98.% compared to          data indicate that there is some drop-off in school                                                                         meet numeracy benchmarks                                                     the percentage of indigenous students not meeting
                                         00% for non-indigenous students 78                    enrolment between primary and secondary school.85
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          – Approximately 5% of indigenous year 7                                       national benchmark standards for numeracy, reading
                                                                                                indigenous secondary school enrolment and
                                       – the retention rate from years 7/8 to years 0 and                                                                                                                                  students do not meet literacy (reading/writing)                              and comprehension and writing at years , 5 and 7
                                                                                                retention rates for indigenous students are clearly
                                          was 9% and 0% for indigenous students                                                                                                                                         benchmarks                                                                   is significantly higher than that of non-indigenous
                                                                                                lower than for non-indigenous students.86 in 006
                                         compared to 99% and 76% for non-indigenous                                                                                                                                       – As indigenous students progress through                                      students.96
                                                                                                the retention rate from year 7/8 (commencement of
                                         students respectively 79                                                                                                                                                           school the proportion who achieve the national
                                                                                                secondary school) to year 9 for indigenous students                                                                                                                                                      As indigenous students progress through school the
                                       – By year  the gap in apparent school retention        was 98.% compared to 00% for non-indigenous                                                                               benchmark standard decreases (i.e. the                                       proportion of students not achieving the national
                                         rates between indigenous and non-indigenous            students.87                                                                                                                 proportion of indigenous students who meet                                   minimum benchmark standard increases.
                                         students was between 0 and 0% with                                                                                                                                               the national benchmark drops significantly
                                         indigenous students being around half as likely        indigenous student enrolment and retention                                                                                  between year  and year 7)                                                   Students not meeting benchmark standards will
                                         as non-indigenous students to complete year          drop significantly from year 0 when compulsory                                                                                                                                                          have difficulty with school.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          – proportionately more indigenous students
                                         schooling 80                                           schooling ends.88
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            participate in vocationally streamed curricula                               in 005 over 50% of year 7 indigenous students
                                       – many of those indigenous students who leave            that drop-off is reflected in the gap between                                                                               than non-indigenous students                                                 were not meeting numeracy benchmarks and
                                         school early have poor literacy and numeracy           indigenous and non-indigenous students’ retention                                                                                                                                                        approximately 5% were not meeting literacy
                                                                                                                                                                                      tertiary entrance                   – proportionately fewer indigenous students
                                         skills and limited post-school options8               that starts to appear in year 0 and grows                                                                                                                                                               (reading/writing) benchmarks.98
                                                                                                                                                                                      qualification                         completing year  achieve a year  certificate
                                                                                                significantly by year .89
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            or meet the requirements for tertiary entrance
                                                                                                in 006 the retention rate from years 7/8 to years 0                                                                       than non-indigenous students
                                        School completion is linked to economic and social      and  was 9% and 0% for indigenous students
                                        wellbeing. research indicates that students who stay    compared to 99% and 76% for non-indigenous
                                        on at school and complete year  are much more         students respectively.9                                                           table 2 – Percentage of indigenous versus non-indigenous student population nOt
                                        likely to undertake additional education and training                                                                                      meeting national numeracy and literacy Benchmarks (2005)97
                                                                                                data suggest that indigenous students have a
                                        and to have more, and better, employment and
                                                                                                significantly higher rate of suspension than non-
                                        career options.8                                                                                                                             year Level           competency Area                                     Student group
                                                                                                indigenous students and are up to three times more
                                        Although the gap between indigenous and non-            likely to be suspended, expelled or alternatively                                                                                                    indigenous                  overall
                                        indigenous retention has reduced over recent years it   placed (i.e. in another school) than non-indigenous
                                                                                                students.9 in many cases this is linked to disciplinary                              year                numeracy                                      0%                        6%
                                        remains high and is viewed by experts as a key factor
                                                                                                                                                                                                           reading and viewing                           %                        7%
                                        limiting indigenous students’ post-school options.8    action relating to attendance and behavioural
                                                                                                issues which are often linked to breakdowns in                                                             Writing                                       6%                        7%
                                                                                                communication/cross-cultural misunderstandings                                        year 5               numeracy                                      %                       9%
Figure 12 – indigenous versus non-indigenous school retention from Years 7/8                    between teachers and students.                                                                             reading and viewing                           7%                       %
for full-time students by year level (2006) 90                                                                                                                                                             Writing                                       6%                       7%
                                                                                                                                                                                      year 7               numeracy                                      5%                       8%
   Apparent retention indigenous                     non-indigenous        difference           77
                                                                                                     ScrgSp overview 007, p.5.
                                                                                                                                       85
                                                                                                                                            c Atkins, victorian council for
                                                                                                78
                                                                                                                                                                                                           reading and viewing                           6%                       0%
   to year Level                                                                                     ABS .0, p..                      Social Service.                                                                                                                                              9
                                                                                                79                                     86
                                                                                                                                            ScrgSp 007, p., 7..
                                                                                                                                                                                                           Writing                                       6%                        8%                        ScrgSp overview 007, p.; mceetyA 006, pp.–.
                                                                                                     ibid.                                                                                                                                                                                               9
   year 9                             98.                 00                (.6)                                                    87                                                                                                                                                                     ScrgSp 007, p.7..
                                                                                                80                                          ABS .0, p..                                                                                                                                            95
                                                                                                     ibid.                                                                                                                                                                                                    ibid., p.6.9.
                                                                                                8                                     88
                                                                                                     ScrgSp 007, p.7.; Zubrick et        ibid.; ScrgSp 007, p..                                                                                                                                    96
   year 0                            9.                 98.9               (7.5)                                                    89                                                                                                                                                                     ministerial council on education, employment, training and youth
                                                                                                     al. 006, p.6.                       ABS .0, p.; ScrgSp 007,                                                                                                                                    Affairs, 005. national report on Schooling in Australia 005:
                                                                                                8                                          p..
   year                             67.7                 88.8               (.)                 ScrgSp 007, pp.–.
                                                                                                                                       90
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              preliminary paper: national Benchmark results reading, Writing and
                                                                                                8                                          ABS .0, p..                                                                                                                                                 numeracy years , 5 and 7., pp.5ff. (mceetyA 005)
                                                                                                     ibid.
                                                                                                                                       9                                                                                                                                                                97
   year                             0.                 75.9               (5.8)            8
                                                                                                     ibid., p.7..                         ibid.                                                                                                                                                             ibid., pp.5ff.
                                                                                                                                       9                                                                                                                                                                98
                                                                                                                                            Bourke et al. 000, pp., 5.                                                                                                                                    ScrgSp 007, pp.7.5ff.


0                                                                                                                                     Our Children, Our Future –             A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                                     
i n d i g e n o u S e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S




. post-secondary qualifications                                                                                                                                                .5 Labour force participation and employment
                                                                                                                                                                                 (positive transitions from school to work)



                                                                                                 Although indigenous participation in vocational                                                                                                                                                       Labour force participation (defined as working or
   Outcome Areas                        Key Performance indicators                               training and tertiary education has increased in                                   Outcome Areas                       Key Performance indicators06                                                  looking for work) provides an indication of both the
   post-secondary                       – indigenous students obtain fewer post-school           recent years it remains relatively low compared to                                 Labour force                        – Labour force participation rates for indigenous                              desire for paid work and the ability to obtain and
   qualifications99                       qualifications than non-indigenous students            the non-indigenous population.00                                                  participation                         people (58.8%) are lower than for non-                                       perform paid work.
                                        – indigenous people are half as likely as non-           indigenous people in all age groups are still less likely                                                                indigenous people (65%)                                                      Labour force participation rates are lower for
                                          indigenous people to have completed a post-            than non-indigenous people to have a vocational or                                                                     – indigenous people aged 8 to  years were                                   indigenous people (58.8%) than for non-indigenous
                                          secondary qualification of certificate Level iii       higher education (non-school) qualification with over                                                                    approximately three times more likely not to be                              people (65%) across all eligible age groups.07
                                          or above                                               70% of indigenous people aged 5 years and over                                                                          participating in the labour force or undertaking
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       indigenous unemployment rates (.%) are
                                           – Students obtaining post-secondary                   having no non-school qualifications, compared to                                                                         post-school education or vocational training
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       approximately three times the rate for non-
                                             qualifications tend to obtain lower level           9.5% of non-indigenous people.0                                                                                       compared to non-indigenous people in the same
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       indigenous people (.7%).08
                                             qualifications than non-indigenous students                                                                                                                                  age group
                                                                                                 indigenous student participation in vocational
                                             (i.e. indigenous enrolments tend to be in                                                                                                                                                                                                                 people aged 8 to  who are not involved in
                                                                                                 education and training (vet) is broadly in line with                               employment rate                     – unemployment rates for indigenous people
                                             lower level (certificate i and ii) qualifications                                                                                                                                                                                                         employment, post-school education or training have
                                                                                                 population, with indigenous students constituting                                                                        (.%) are approximately three times the rate
                                             rather than higher level qualifications                                                                                                                                                                                                                   been identified as being at higher risk of long-term
                                                                                                 approximately % of the total student population                                                                         for non-indigenous people (.7%)
                                             (certificate iii and above))                                                                                                                                                                                                                              disadvantage.09
                                                                                                 enrolled in vet courses.0 however, indigenous                                                                        – indigenous people are more likely than non-
                                           – indigenous completion rates for higher level        students’ module completion rates are relatively                                                                         indigenous people to be employed part-time                                   As is the case with respect to post-secondary
                                             qualifications (certificate iii and above)          low compared to those of non-indigenous students                                                                         (5% compared to 8%)                                                        education, the disparity in labour force participation
                                             are lower (55%) than for non-indigenous             (in 00, the rate of vet module completions for                                                                                                                                                      and employment has been attributed in part to
                                             students (80%)                                      indigenous students was 65%, compared to 78% of                                    employment profile                  – indigenous people are more likely to be                                      lower school completion and attainment levels and
                                                                                                 the total vet student population).0 the disparity                                                                      employed in lower skilled occupations (6%)                                  basic numeracy and literacy deficits.
                                        – Labour force participation rates for both
                                                                                                 in course completion has been attributed in part to                                                                      than non-indigenous people (6%)
                                          indigenous and non-indigenous people aged
                                          8 and over are much higher for people with a          lower school completion and attainment levels and
                                          certificate iii vocational qualification or higher     basic numeracy and literacy deficits.
                                                                                                 indigenous students are under-represented in the
                                                                                                 higher education sector comprising approximately
                                                                                                 % of the total higher education population.0 Some
                                                                                                 educators have raised concerns that the growth of
                                                                                                 vet programs in schools, while making an important
                                                                                                 contribution to educational and employment
                                                                                                 outcomes, is contributing to the diversion of
                                                                                                 indigenous students away from tertiary education.
                                                                                                 the Western Australian Aboriginal child health
                                                                                                 Survey 006 notes that anecdotal evidence from
                                                                                                 indigenous students suggests that some schools
                                                                                                 are providing indigenous students with information
                                                                                                 relating to vet courses without providing them with
                                                                                                 information relating to their tertiary options.05




                                                                                                 99
                                                                                                       ScrgSp overview 007, p.6; mceetyA 006, p..
                                                                                                 00
                                                                                                       mceetyA 006, p..
                                                                                                 0
                                                                                                       ScrgSp 007, p...
                                                                                                 0
                                                                                                       ABS 70.0.
                                                                                                 0
                                                                                                       ibid.; hunter B, Schwab r. practical reconciliation and continuing
                                                                                                       disadvantage in indigenous education. the drawing Board: An                                                                                                                                     06
                                                                                                       Australian review of public Affairs, 00, nov: (), pp.8–98.                                                                                                                                       ABS 687.0.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       07
                                                                                                       (hunter et al. 00)                                                                                                                                                                                  ibid.
                                                                                                 0                                                                                                                                                                                                   08
                                                                                                       ABS 70.0.                                                                                                                                                                                           ibid.
                                                                                                 05                                                                                                                                                                                                   09
                                                                                                       Zubrick et al. 006, p.xxix.                                                                                                                                                                          ibid.


                                                                                                                                     Our Children, Our Future –           A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                      
i n d i g e n o u S e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S




.6 Socio-economic status                                                                                                                                                      .7 individual wellbeing



                                                                                           indigenous people generally have poorer socio-
   Outcome Areas                        Key Performance indicators                                                                                                                Outcome Areas                       Key Performance indicators
                                                                                           economic outcomes than the non-indigenous
   household and                        – in 00 the mean gross household weekly          population. the disparity in status is reflected in                                    Life expectancy                     – Average indigenous life expectancy is approximately 7 years lower than for the total Australian
   individual income                      indigenous income ($6) was approximately       lower than average household and individual income                                     at birth 9                          population
                                          8% lower than the mean non-indigenous           levels and home ownership, and high levels of
                                                                                                                                                                                  health, disability and              – indigenous health is generally lower than for the non-indigenous population
                                          income ($585) 0                                household overcrowding and homelessness.
                                                                                                                                                                                  chronic disease 0                 – indigenous infant mortality rates are two to three times higher than for the total infant population
                                        – 5% of the indigenous population falls within    the areas of disadvantage described in the above
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      – death rates from external causes and preventable diseases are approximately five times higher for
                                          the lowest quintile (0%) for gross household    table are affected by a range of factors, of which
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        indigenous children than for non-indigenous children
                                          weekly income compared to 9.% for the non-     education is one. this report does not go into detail
                                          indigenous population                         in relation to the areas covered in the table. further                                                                     – indigenous hospitalisation rates for potentially preventable chronic conditions is eight times the rate
                                                                                           information on these areas can be obtained from the                                                                          for non-indigenous people
                                        – 7% of the indigenous population is in either
                                          the lowest or second lowest income quintiles     overcoming indigenous disadvantage: Key indicators                                                                         – indigenous children are three times more likely to have adverse hearing conditions than
                                          and only 5% are in the highest                report for 007 8 prepared by the productivity                                                                             non-indigenous children
                                                                                           commission.
                                        – in 00–5 over half of the indigenous                                                                                                   Suicide and self-harm  – Suicide rates are higher for indigenous people than for the non-indigenous population
                                          population (5%) received most of their                                                                                                                                     – A marginally higher number of indigenous people are hospitalised for intentional self-harm than non-
                                          individual income from government pensions                                                                                                                                    indigenous people
                                          and allowances, % from salaries and wages
                                          and 0% from cdep                                                                                                                    Substantiated child                 – indigenous children are nearly four times as likely as other children to be the subject of substantiated
                                                                                                                                                                                  abuse and neglect                  abuse or neglect
   home ownership                       – in 00 (the most recent year in which
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      – Almost 0 out of every 000 indigenous children aged 0 to 7 were on care and protection orders at 0
                                          comparable data are available) 7% of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        June 006 compared to 5 per 000 for non-indigenous children
                                          indigenous adults lived in homes owned or
                                          being purchased by a member of their family                                                                                             family and community                – indigenous people are more likely than non-indigenous people to be victims of domestic violence-
                                          compared to 7% on non-indigenous adults                                                                                             violence                           related assault
                                        – in 00 0% of indigenous households and %                                                                                                                                – in 005–6 000 indigenous people and 5,000 non-indigenous people sought Supported Accommodation
                                          of indigenous people aged 5 years and over                                                                                                                                   Assistance program (SAAp) assistance to escape domestic or family violence
                                          lived in overcrowded housing (six times more
                                                                                                                                                                                  deaths from homicide                – in 00–5 indigenous people accounted for 5% of homicide deaths and 6% of homicide offenders
                                          than among the non-indigenous population) 5
                                                                                                                                                                                  and hospitalisations for            – the homicide rate in the indigenous population is five to 5 times the rate in the non-indigenous
                                        – in 00–5 5% of indigenous people aged 5                                                                                              assault                            population in Queensland, WA, SA and the nt
                                          years and over live in overcrowded housing 6
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      – indigenous people are 7 times more likely to be hospitalised as a result of assault than
                                        – indigenous homelessness rates (%) are
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        non-indigenous people
                                          .5 times the rate for the non-indigenous
                                          population 7                                                                                                                          imprisonment and                    – indigenous people are significantly over-represented in the criminal justice system
                                                                                                                                                                                  juvenile detention                  – indigenous people are  times more likely to be imprisoned than non-indigenous people
                                                                                                                                                                                  rates 5
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      – indigenous juveniles are more than  times more likely to be detained than non-indigenous juveniles


                                                                                                                                                                                                                      indigenous Australians continue to experience
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      poorer outcomes than non-indigenous Australians
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      across most social and economic parameters.6
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      A range of those parameters is summarised in the
                                                                                           0
                                                                                                 ABS 7.0.                                                                                                          above table.
                                                                                           
                                                                                                 Australian Bureau of Statistics. Year Book Australia. cat. no. 0.0.
                                                                                                 canberra: ABS, 00. (ABS 0.0)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      As with socio-economic status, the areas of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     9
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   disadvantage described in the table are affected by                                  ScrgSp overview 007, p..
                                                                                                 ABS 7.0.                                                                                                                                                                                         0
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           ibid., pp.5–7, .
                                                                                           
                                                                                                 ScrgSp overview 007, p.8.                                                                                          a range of factors, of which education is one. this                            
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        ibid., p.0.
                                                                                                 ibid., p.9.                                                                                                         report does not go into detail in relation to the                              
                                                                                           5                                                                                                                                                                                                             ibid., pp.0, 0.
                                                                                                 Australian institute of health and Welfare. Indigenous Housing                                                       areas covered in the table. further information in                             
                                                                                                 Needs 2005: A Multimeasure Needs Model. cat. no. hou 9.                                                                                                                                                 ibid., p..
                                                                                                 canberra: AhiW, 005, pp., 9. (AhiW 005)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      relation to these areas can also be obtained from                              
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           ibid., p..
                                                                                           6
                                                                                                 ibid., pp., 9.                                                                                                     the Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage: Key                                    5
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           ibid., p..
                                                                                           7
                                                                                                 ibid., p..                                                                                                          Indicators Report for 2007 7 prepared by the                                 6
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           ScrgSp 007, pp.–6.
                                                                                           8                                                                                                                                                                                                       7
                                                                                                 ScrgSp 007.                                                                                                         productivity commission.                                                             ScrgSp 007.


                                                                                                                                Our Children, Our Future –              A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                      5
                                                                                                                                           5. underlying conceptual framework




5. Factors contributing                                                                                                                    A number of factors impact the education outcomes
                                                                                                                                           of indigenous students. these factors can be grouped
                                                                                                                                           into four () areas:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Social or Community Context – factors linked to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             socio-economic status such as family income,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             health, nutrition and housing




contributing to poor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. home Context – factors linked to the home
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             environment in which the student lives such as
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             parental status and life experience, parenting,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             early childhood development and parental and



Indigenous education
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             family capacity to support student learning
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. School Context – factors linked to the education
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             system and the way in which education
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             is delivered



outcomes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          4. Student Context – factors linked to the individual
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             student’s life experience, skill base, emotional
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             status, behaviour, life goals and aspirations,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             experience of and attitude towards school and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             school performance.

     Section  above has detailed the poor status of indigenous                                                                            Figure 13 – Contributing factors influencing indigenous student learning and development
     education outcomes. the following section looks at the
                                                                                                                                               Social or Community                 home                                   School                      Student
     factors that are contributing to these poor outcomes.
                                                                                                                                               Context                             Context                                Context                     Context
                                                                                                                                               – household income/    – family stability/function – Access to school             – Basic material
                                                                                                                                                 financial stability  – family mobility              (inc. availability of local   and personal
                                                                                                                                               – Access to mainstream – parenting                    educational institution/      support needs
                                                                                                                                                 services                                            transport)                  – engagement with
                                                                                                                                                                      – early childhood
                                                                                                                                               – health and nutrition                              – School/learning               school and learning
                                                                                                                                                                        development
                                                                                                                                                                                                     environment                   – school experience
                                                                                                                                               – housing/physical       (inc. physical, cognitive,
                                                                                                                                                                                                   – curriculum                    – foundation skills
                                                                                                                                                 learning environment   cultural and spiritual
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     (inc. communication
                                                                                                                                               – community              development)               – teaching approach
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     and language skills,
                                                                                                                                                 environment/safety   – parental/family            – parental/family/                social interaction)
                                                                                                                                                                        experience (inc. education, community involvement          – personal and
                                                                                                                                                                        labour force participation                                   cultural identity
                                                                                                                                                                        and employment)                                            – behaviour
                                                                                                                                                                      – parental/family support                                  – Learning support
                                                                                                                                                                        for student learning                                       needs
                                                                                                                                                                        at home                                                    – school performance
                                                                                                                                                                      – Language and culture                                       – literacy and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     numeracy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      – vocational
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        development
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        – life experience
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        – life and vocational
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          goals and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          aspirations




6                                                                Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                        7
fA c to r S co n t r i B u t i n g to p o o r i n d i g e n o u S e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S




                                                                                                                                                                                     5.. Social or community context



                                       Where students are affected by factors across                                  When considering those factors it is worth noting              A. poverty/low household income                                                c. poor health and nutrition
                                       multiple contexts then each of those contexts needs                            the cross-generational impact that historically                Low income negatively impacts key health and                                   poor health and nutrition have been identified as
                                       to be addressed in order to support optimal learning                           poor indigenous education outcomes have had,                   housing indicators.                                                            key factors impacting both the ability of indigenous
                                       and development outcomes effectively. many, if not                             and continue to have, in influencing the Social or                                                                                            children to attend school and to be able to
                                       most, indigenous students will be affected by factors                          community, home, School and Student contexts of                Low household income often means that families
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    concentrate and participate effectively in school
                                       across all four () contexts.                                                  the current generation of indigenous students.                 are not able to cover school fees, subject levies or
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    when they do attend.
                                                                                                                                                                                     other school-based costs. it therefore limits the
                                       A more detailed discussion of the contributing                                                                                                ability of indigenous families to access education and                         Basic illnesses and conditions related to poor
                                       factors adversely affecting indigenous education is                                                                                           education support services and to fund the provision                           environmental health and hygiene, such as chronic
                                       set out in Sub-sections 5. – 5.5 below.                                                                                                      of basic school equipment, uniforms and transport.8                          ear infections, have a significant negative impact
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    on indigenous children and their capacity to engage
                                                                                                                                                                                     B. Limited access to or use of                                                 effectively at school.
                                       Figure 14 Cross-generational effect of poor indigenous education outcomes
                                                                                                                                                                                     mainstream services
                                                                                                                                                                                     until the late 960s many indigenous Australians                               Breakout text 6 – Snapshot of indigenous versus non-
                                       Outcomes                                                                                                                                      were excluded from mainstream government                                       indigenous child health 
                                                                                                                                      The higher order
                                                                                                                                      outcomes of poor                               services, including education.9 exclusion from those
                                       Sixth Order           Curriculum                                                               education reinforce                            services has led to socio-economic disparities in areas                              ‘Each year, around 11,000 Aboriginal children are born. By the age of 10
                                                                                                     Individual                       the underlying
                                                                                                     Wellbeing                                                                       such as health, housing, education and employment.                                   years, in many remote Aboriginal communities, up to 40% of these children
                                                                                                                                      factors contributing
                                                                                                                                      to those outcomes                              Some researchers suggest that in many cases current                                  will have developed a chronic suppurative ear infection causing hearing
                                                                                                   Socio-economic
                                       Fifth Order
                                                                                                       Statue                                                                        access to mainstream services is impeded by the                                      loss, about 20% will have been infected with trachoma, 10 to15% will have
                                                                                                                                                                                     failure to address long-term disadvantage linked                                     developed malnutrition, around 30% will have anaemia, some will suffer the
                                                                                                                                                                                     to historical exclusion from such services/to adapt                                  highest rates of acute rheumatic heart disease in the world, and a further 5%
                                                                                          Labour Force Participation
                                       Fourth Order
                                                                                              and Employment                                                                         service delivery appropriately to meet the cultural                                  will have been hospitalised for preventable pneumonia.
                                                                                                                                                                                     needs of indigenous people.0                                                       In non-Indigenous Australian children, it is likely that none will develop
                                                                                                                                                                                     Some researchers also suggest that the rapid                                         trachoma, rheumatic fever, and chronic suppurative ear infections, and only a
                                       Third Order                                         Post-School Qualification
                                                                                                                                                                                     movement from exclusion to inclusion in the                                          few may develop the other diseases’.
                                                                                                                                                                                     Australian welfare system has led to welfare
                                       Second Order                                 School Performance / Achievement                                                                 dependency, creating a ‘poverty trap’ that is difficult
                                                                                                                                                                                     to escape.
                                                                                                                                                                                     negative experiences associated with exclusion from
                                       First Order                       School Attendance                         School Retention                                                  (or in some cases adverse experiences associated with
                                                                                                                                                                                     participation in) the education system, have had a
                                                                                                                                                                                     cross-generational impact, leading some indigenous
                                       Contributing               Social or               Home                     School         Student                                            parents and families to have a negative view of
                                       Factors                   Community               Context                  Context         Context
                                                                   Context
                                                                                                                                                                                     education/to see the education system as being
                                                                                                                                                                                     the domain of non-indigenous people, not suited to                             8
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          greer t. Submission to the Senate Standing committee on
                                                                                                                                                                                     indigenous needs. those views affect parental and                                    employment, Workplace relations and education inquiry into the
                                                                                                                                                                                     family engagement with the education system and                                      indigenous education (targeted Assistance) Amendment (cape
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          york measures) Bill 007, pp.–7. (greer 007)
                                                                                                                                                                                     the approach that they take to encouraging school                              9
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          fletcher J. clean clad and courteous: A history of Aboriginal School
                                                                                                                                                                                     attendance.                                                                          education in new South Wales. Sydney: Southwood press, 989.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          (fletcher 989)
                                                                                                                                                                                     high indigenous unemployment and reliance on                                   0
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Behrendt L. Achieving Social Justice: indigenous rights and
                                                                                                                                                                                     welfare can also have a negative effect on the                                       Australia’s future. nSW: the federation press, 00. (Behrendt
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          00)
                                                                                                                                                                                     perceived relevance of education. high levels of                               
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          cechanski J. poverty in Australia: A focus on indigenous poverty
                                                                                                                                                                                     parental and family unemployment and limited                                         from an international human rights perspective. human rights
                                                                                                                                                                                     access to post-school employment opportunities can                                   defender, 00: , p.5. (cechanski 00); pearson n. Address to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          the national reconciliation planning Workshop. canberra, 0 may
                                                                                                                                                                                     mean that students do not appreciate the connection                                  005. (pearson 005)
                                                                                                                                                                                     between school and post-school employment and                                  
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          ScrgSp 007, p.; Blair e, Zubrick r, cox A. the Western
                                                                                                                                                                                     so can lead them to exit school early and revert to                                  Australian Aboriginal child health Survey: findings to date on
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Adolescents. the medical Journal of Australia 005, 8, pp. –5.
                                                                                                                                                                                     welfare rather than pursuing employment or post-                                     (Blair 005)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                                                                     school qualifications.                                                               couzos S. perspective – Aboriginal health. ABc radio national, 5
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          January 00. (couzos 00)


8                                                                                                                                                 Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                 9
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                                                                                                                                                                                      5. home context



                                       recent studies conducted by the national Aboriginal         physical and emotional wellbeing and to reduce their                               A. Low parental/family engagement                                              the Western Australian Aboriginal child health
                                       community controlled health organisation have               capacity to focus on education and to establish a                                  with the education system/                                                     Survey (006) identified that % of the indigenous
                                       identified that school attendance rates tend to             productive home-learning environment.                                                                                                                             children surveyed were at high risk of clinically
                                       be lower for students suffering from chronic ear
                                                                                                                                                                                      employment                                                                     significant emotional and behavioural difficulties
                                                                                                   research has established that the experience of                                    research indicates that people who have completed
                                       infections than for other children. chronic ear                                                                                                                                                                            associated with:
                                                                                                   stressful events (such as a death in the family, family                            secondary or post-secondary education and/or are
                                       infections and related hearing loss have also been                                                                                                                                                                            – developmental problems – including hearing,
                                                                                                   violence or trauma) can have an adverse impact on                                  employed, are more likely to encourage their children
                                       identified as contributing to language and learning                                                                                                                                                                              language and visual deficits
                                                                                                   the individual’s and family’s ability to cope with day-                            to do the same and are better positioned to provide
                                       deficits in affected children.5                                                                                                                                                                                             – family factors – including carer illness, poor
                                                                                                   to-day life. 0                                                                   children with educational support.5
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           parenting and poor family function in some
Breakout text 7 – impact of chronic ear infections on indigenous school attendance6              the Western Australia Aboriginal child health Survey                               historically low indigenous engagement in the                                        cases relating to adverse health, behavioural and
                                                                                                   (006) identified that over 0% of indigenous children                             education system and poor educational and                                            educational outcomes associated with long-term
                                                                                                   were found to be living in families experiencing                                   employment outcomes mean that indigenous                                             socio-economic disadvantage and the impact of
     indigenous children are three times more likely to have adverse hearing                       high levels of stress (7 to  major life stress events                            students are less likely to have parental support to                                 the Stolen generation on individual and family
     conditions than non-indigenous children.                                                      per year).  those children were found to be more                                assist them in their studies than non-indigenous                                     health and wellbeing. 50
     results from the Western Australia Aboriginal child health Survey indicate                    than five times more likely to be at risk of clinically                            students. 6                                                                  the above figure compares with a rate of 5% for
     that approximately 8% of indigenous children in West Australia suffer                        significant emotional and behavioural difficulties
                                                                                                                                                                                      At a practical level, low parental and family                                  non-indigenous children. 5
     from recurring ear infections.                                                                than children in families subject to lower levels
                                                                                                   of stress.                                                                      education has:
                                                                                                                                                                                      – negatively affected indigenous experiences of,                               Breakout text 8 – effect of family removals on current indigenous population5
                                                                                                   these emotional and behavioural difficulties are                                      and attitudes towards, the education system
                                       poor nutrition has a similar effect. it also has            identified as tending to have a negative impact on
                                                                                                                                                                                      – reduced the capacity of indigenous parents/                                        government policy provided for the forced removal of indigenous children
                                       the capacity to impact cognitive and physical               students’ capacity to learn by reducing their ability to:
                                                                                                                                                                                          families to engage effectively with the education                                from their families from the late 800s until 969. Such removals involved
                                       development and reduce students’ concentration              – concentrate
                                                                                                                                                                                          system                                                                           putting children in government institutions and fostering or adoption by
                                       and capacity to learn.7                                   – interact with peers and teaching staff
                                                                                                                                                                                      – reduced parental involvement in school-based                                       white families.
                                                                                                   – regulate their behaviour.
                                       Anecdotal evidence suggests that a number of                                                                                                       activities and decision-making
                                                                                                   research indicates that students who have emotional                                                                                                                     As many as 00,000 children are believed to have been taken away from
                                       indigenous children (particularly in regional and
                                                                                                   and behavioural difficulties are more likely to have                               – limited the capacity of indigenous parents/                                        their families.
                                       remote areas) attend school without adequate
                                                                                                   poor school attendance.  indigenous students with                                   families to support their children in education
                                       breakfast or lunch.8                                                                                                                                                                                                              the 00 national Aboriginal and torres Strait islander Social Survey
                                                                                                   such difficulties are also approximately three times                                   and employment. 7
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           (nAtSiS) identified that 8% of indigenous people aged 5 years or over and
                                       d. poor housing                                             more likely than other indigenous students to have                                 poor parental education levels mean that many                                        0% of indigenous people aged 5 years or over reported that they had been
                                       poor or overcrowded housing has been identified as          low academic performance.                                                       indigenous parents and families are not able to                                      taken away from their natural family.
                                       having a negative impact on health, family stability                                                                                           provide their children with much of the early
                                                                                                                                                                                      childhood support that most non-indigenous                                           it is generally accepted that the forced separation of children from their
                                       and education.
                                                                                                                                                                                      families take for granted when building basic                                        families resulted in trauma for the children, families and communities
                                       At the most basic level, it limits the ability of                                                                                                                                                                                   affected by the removal policy, and that that has had long-term
                                                                                                                                                                                      communication and literacy skills.
                                       students to get enough sleep and to establish a             
                                                                                                         national Aboriginal community controlled health organisation.                                                                                                     consequences in terms of social and cultural dislocation, poor health and
                                       productive home-learning environment (with a                      nAccho ear trial and School Attendance project: final report
                                                                                                         to the department of education Science and training. canberra:
                                                                                                                                                                                      B. parenting and early childhood                                                     wellbeing and social dysfunction.
                                       quiet, appropriately lit space to study). those factors
                                                                                                   5
                                                                                                         nAccho, 00. (nAccho 00)                                                  development
                                       negatively impact the ability of indigenous children              ibid.
                                                                                                   6                                                                                ‘There is a proven relationship between the
                                       both to concentrate and participate effectively in                Zubrick S, Lawrence d, Silburn S, Blair e, milroy h, Wilkes t, eades,
                                                                                                         S, d’Antoine h, read A, ishiguchi p, doyle S. the Western Australian         quality of early childhood experiences … and the
                                       school and to learn at home. data from the Western                Aboriginal child health Survey: the health of Aboriginal children
                                       Australia Aboriginal child health Survey (006)                   and young people. perth: telethon institute for child health                 developing capabilities of the brain.’ 8                                     5
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           ibid., p.6.6.
                                                                                                         research, 00, pp.ff. (Zubrick et al. 00)                                                                                                             6
                                       indicate that students who have trouble getting             7                                                                                                                                                                     ScrgSp 007, p.6.6.
                                                                                                         center on hunger and poverty. Statement on the Link Between                  positive parenting and engagement in early                                     7
                                       enough sleep are one and a half times more likely to              nutrition and cognitive development in children., institute                                                                                                       ibid.; mellor S, corrigan m. the case for change: A review of
                                                                                                                                                                                      childhood education have been identified as                                          contemporary research in indigenous education outcomes.
                                       be absent from school than other students. 9                    of Assets and Social policy, heller School for Social policy
                                                                                                         and management, Brandeis university, 998. http://www.                       important factors in providing a good grounding                                      camberwell: Australian council of education research press, 00,
                                                                                                         centeronhunger.org (center on hunger and poverty 998)                                                                                                            p 7. (mellor et al. 00)
                                       e. poor or unsafe community                                 8
                                                                                                                                                                                      for school attainment. poor environmental                                      8
                                                                                                         program and educational Subject matter expert interviews                                                                                                          Wise S, da Silva L, Webster e, Sanson A. the efficacy of early
                                                                                                                                                                                      circumstances (such as low family income), poor
                                       environment                                                       conducted in the preparation of this report.                                                                                                                      childhood interventions. AifS research report no., July 005,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           p.. (Wise et al. 005)
                                                                                                   9
                                                                                                         Zubrick et al. 006, p..                                                  health and negative experiences (such as exposure                              9
                                       high levels of community violence or anti-social            0                                                                                to family and community trauma and dysfunction)                                      ibid., p..
                                                                                                         ibid., p..                                                                                                                                               50
                                       behaviour tend to have a negative impact on                 
                                                                                                         ibid.                                                                        have been identified as having a negative effect on
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Zubrick et al. 006, p.xxxiii.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     5
                                       individual and family welfare and to reduce the                                                                                                                                                                                  ibid., p..
                                                                                                         ibid.                                                                        children’s cognitive development, behaviour and                                5
                                       stability of students’ home environment. that in                                                                                                                                                                                 Australian Bureau of Statistics. national Aboriginal and torres Strait
                                                                                                         ibid., pp., 7.                                                          school attainment. 9                                                               islander Social Survey, cat. no. 7.0. canberra: ABS, 00; Zubrick
                                       turn tends to have a negative impact on students’           
                                                                                                         ScrgSp 007, p.7.6.                                                                                                                                               et al. 00, pp.0ff; hreoc 997.


0                                                                                                                                         Our Children, Our Future –            A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                              
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                                                                                                                                                                                               5. School context



As noted above, students who have emotional and                                Breakout text 9 – indigenous students aged 12 and 13 comment                                                    A range of factors associated with the socio-                                  A. Access to education
behavioural difficulties are more likely to struggle at                        on their ability to engage with school on Yolngu radio 58                                                      economic and home context in which students live,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              ‘It is estimated that as many as 7,500 Indigenous
school. 5 the Western Australia Survey notes that                                                                                                                                            the school context in which they are engaged and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              children in the Northern Territory do not attend
in order for indigenous students to access learning                                                                                                                                            the student’s own personal experience have been
                                                                                     ‘We don’t retain information – we hear teaching especially in English and                                                                                                                school and preschool. In most cases, the teachers,
effectively, additional support is required to address                                                                                                                                         identified as contributing to indigenous student
basic health and developmental needs.                                                feel that we don’t grasp what is being taught, and so it disappears.                                      absenteeism.                                                                   classrooms, chairs and desks simply do not exist to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              accommodate them.’ 6
                                                                                     We go to school, hear something, go home, and the teaching is gone.
c. Language barriers                                                                 We feel hopeless. Is there something wrong with our heads because this
                                                                                                                                                                                               research indicates that students are more likely to
                                                                                                                                                                                               attend school when60 :                                                        ‘Secondary teachers are still only available in a
‘Australian Aboriginal English … is now the primary                                  English just does not work for us?
                                                                                                                                                                                               – they are encouraged to attend school by their
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              relatively small number of communities.’ 6
language of internal and wider communication for
                                                                                     We want to learn English words but the teachers cannot communicate                                            parents/family – data indicate that this is more
the majority of Australian Aboriginal people.’ 5                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Although physical access to education institutions is
                                                                                     with us to teach us. It is like we are aliens to each other’                                                  likely to happen when one or more members                                  not an issue in most urban and regional areas, some
Although most indigenous people (approximately                                                                                                                                                     of the student’s family have completed year                              service gaps continue to exist in a number of remote
80%) speak either Standard Australian english                                                                                                                                                      and/or are employed and can act as positive role                           indigenous communities.
(SAe) or Aboriginal english (a non-standard dialect                                                                                                                                                models for the student 6
of english) 55 at home, approximately % of the                                                                                                                                              – they perceive school as a safe caring place where
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Some outer regional and remote communities
indigenous population speak an Aboriginal or torres                                                                                                                                                                                                                           only have access to limited preschool and primary
                                                                                                                                                                                                   they and their parents feel valued and welcome
Strait island (Australian indigenous) language at                                                                                                                                                                                                                             school services. Although long-distance secondary
                                                                                                                                                                                               – they have a positive and supportive relationship
home.56                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      education is technically available, low parental
                                                                                                                                                                                                   with their teachers                                                        education levels and poor service access mean
data from the 00 census indicate that more than                                                                                                                                              – they find school interesting and relevant – data                             that, in practical terms, students seeking to pursue
half (55%) of the indigenous people living in very                                                                                                                                                 indicate that this is more likely to be the case                           secondary education are often required to move
remote areas speak an indigenous language at home                                                                                                                                                  where:                                                                     away from their community in order to attend
(the figures in non-remote areas are significantly
                                                                                                                                                                                                   – the curriculum is contextually relevant (i.e.                            secondary school.
lower, with only % in major cities and inner regional
                                                                                                                                                                                                      it takes into account the student’s situation,
areas). 57                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   the distance between regional and remote
                                                                                                                                                                                                      is linked to their practical interests) and                             communities and an appropriate educational
the difference between the language spoken at                                                                                                                                                         culturally relevant (i.e. it includes some form of                      institution and access to reliable transport
home and at school affects indigenous education                                                                                                                                                       indigenous language/cultural studies)                                   exacerbate this issue.
outcomes in multiple ways. it increases the                                                                                                                                                        – the teaching approach is aligned with
challenges that indigenous students face when they                                                                                                                                                                                                                            the need for students from regional and remote
                                                                                                                                                                                                      indigenous learning styles/preferences
start (pre)school in understanding what is being                                                                                                                                                                                                                              communities to move away from their community
                                                                                                                                                                                               – they see the connection between school and post-
taught. it inhibits communication between teachers                                                                                                                                                                                                                            (often for the first time) makes the transition
                                                                                                                                                                                                   school education and employment opportunities                              from primary to secondary schooling particularly
and their students. it limits the ability of the school
                                                                                                                                                                                                   that align with their individual life goals                                challenging for many indigenous students. 6
and teaching staff to communicate with parents
                                                                                                                                                                                                   and aspirations
(at the most basic level, this includes the fact that
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              in some cases where schools do exist in outer
some parents cannot understand school newsletters                                                                                                                                              – teaching staff are trained in teaching english as
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              regional and remote communities they are not
and school reports that are written in Standard                                                                                                                                                    a second language (eSL) and have experience
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              adequately resourced to service the local student
Australian english). it also limits the capacity of                                                                                                                                                teaching in a cross-cultural and bilingual situation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              population.
parents to provide home-based learning support for                                                                                                                                             – teachers place reasonable demands on the
their children.                                                                                                                                                                                    student and do not cap student potential                                   for example, in the northern territory resourcing
                                                                                                                                                                                                   or motivation by setting a low performance                                 decisions have been based on student attendance
cultural differences can also make it difficult for
                                                                                                                                                                                                   expectation                                                                levels rather than enrolments which, given the high
students and their parents to understand the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              non-attendance levels, means that if all indigenous
–often unspoken – rules about how school operates                              5                                                                                                             – indigenous parents and communities are involved
                                                                                     ScrgSp 007, p.7.6.
and what is expected of students and parents in a                              5                                                                                                                 with the school and in the teaching process.
                                                                                     harkins, J. Structure and meaning in Australian Aboriginal english.
school environment. this can lead to confusion and                                   Asian englishes: An international Journal of the Sociolinguistics of                                      A detailed summary of the factors identified as                                60
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Bourke et al. 000, pp.6–7; Zubrick et al. 006, pp.ff.
                                                                                     english in Asia-pacific, 000, (), pp.60–8 on p.60. (harkins 000)                                                                                                                    6
misunderstanding and make school seem like an                                  55                                                                                                             affecting indigenous student absenteeism is                                          ScrgSp 007, p.0; Zubrick et al. 006, p..
                                                                                     mceetyA 006, p..                                                                                                                                                                      6
unwelcoming and foreign place. 59                                             56                                                                                                             provided in Appendix one.                                                            Kronemann, m. education is the Key: An education future for
                                                                                     ABS 7.0.                                                                                                                                                                                    indigenous communities in the northern territory. Aeu, 9
                                                                               57
                                                                                     ibid.                                                                                                                                                                                          September 007, p.6. (Kronemann 007)
                                                                               58                                                                                                                                                                                            6
                                                                                     Wild r, Anderson p. Board of inquiry into the protection of                                                                                                                                    ibid., p.5.
                                                                                     Aboriginal children from Sexual Abuse. northern territory                                                                                                                                6
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    ScrgSp 007, p.7.; ministerial council for education employment
                                                                                     government, 007, p.7. (Wild et al. 007)                                                                                                                                                    training and youth Affairs taskforce on indigenous education.
                                                                               59
                                                                                     osborne B. (ed.) teaching diversity and democracy. victoria:                                                                                                                                   discussion paper: exploring multiple pathways for indigenous
                                                                                     common ground, 00, pp.05–0. (osborne 00)                                                                                                                                                Students. melbourne: mceetyA, 00. (mceetyA 00)


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                                       students of school age did turn up for school                            B. School environment                                         research indicates that in many cases inadequate focus                            – contextually relevant – recognise and incorporate
                                       tomorrow there would not be enough teachers,                             research indicates that students are more likely              is placed on addressing the language and literacy-based                                 the local/community context
                                       classrooms and resources for them.65 the above                          to engage positively with school if they and their            learning needs of these students through the provision                            – individually relevant – recognise and respond to
                                       resourcing approach has been described by some                           families feel safe and welcome. poor indigenous               of intensive language and learning support programs.                                    students’ interests and aspirations.8
                                       educational practitioners as ‘(resourcing schools)                       student attendance is often linked to students not            Some practitioners believe that the relatively low focus                          Approaches to incorporating indigenous culture in
                                       to cope, not to succeed.’66                                             feeling comfortable, valued or supported at school.70        on english as a Second Language (eSL) teacher training                            school curricula vary. most States and territories have
                                       it has been noted that in some cases the above                           the above reaction is often linked to multiple factors        and curricula in recent years has reduced the ability of                          developed policies to incorporate cultural studies in
                                       resourcing model has the effect of discouraging                          including:                                                    schools to meet the needs of indigenous and other eSL                             their curricula in some form.8 education researchers
                                       schools from doing more to get indigenous students                       – poor student–teacher relationships                          students.77                                                                      suggest that (particularly in regional and remote
                                       to attend school on the basis that they do not have                                                                                                                                                                      communities where the indigenous student population
                                                                                                                – feelings of social isolation                                the adoption of a bilingual or two-way-learning
                                       the resources to service those (often higher need)                                                                                                                                                                       is high) school curricula should be developed in
                                                                                                                – racial discrimination or bullying                           approach that recognises the student’s existing
                                       students if they do attend. 67                                                                                                                                                                                          conjunction with parents and community members,
                                                                                                                – learning difficulties/poor performance.                     linguistic and cultural knowledge base while building
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                taking into account the local environment and culture,
Breakout text 10 – Snapshot of issues affecting remote access to                                                                                                              SAe language, literacy and numeracy skills has been
                                                                                                                teacher–student relationships and perceived staff                                                                                               and including indigenous language/cultural studies.8
school facilities and resources68                                                                                                                                            endorsed by a number of education specialists.78
                                                                                                                attitudes towards and interest in students, their
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                it is broadly agreed that the inclusion of such studies in
                                                                                                                family and community have been identified as being            C.2 Culturally and contextually relevant curriculum
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                curricula should not be at the expense of the delivery
     ‘At least 10 schools in the prescribed communities in the Northern Territory                               particularly important in influencing how students            research also indicates that in many cases (again
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                of the core academic program or academic standard.8
     have current average student attendance that exceeds available classroom                                   and families experience the school environment.7            particularly in regional and remote areas) indigenous
     capacity. A further 12 schools have emerging classroom pressures where                                                                                                   students struggle to engage with schooling because                                the inclusion of indigenous cultural studies and
                                                                                                                research shows that indigenous student and parental
     classrooms are operating at 80% or more of current capacity and will face                                                                                                curriculum components are not seen as being                                       language in school curricula has been identified as an
                                                                                                                engagement with school tends to improve where
     significant accommodation pressure when school attendance provisions                                                                                                     sufficiently practical or relevant to student experiences                         important element in supporting:
                                                                                                                schools adopt an organisational culture and teaching
     impact on communities.’ (deSt)                                                                                                                                           in that they:                                                                     – student attendance and engagement in learning
                                                                                                                approach that affirms indigenous culture and
                                                                                                                identity.7                                                  – are not adequately contextualised in relation to                                – parental involvement in, and attitude towards, the
     commonwealth government funding has been allocated as part of the
                                                                                                                                                                                  students’ daily experience or knowledge base                                        curriculum and the teaching process.85
     northern territory intervention to increase the number of classrooms in a
                                                                                                                c. School curriculum                                          – do not align strongly with students’ goals
     series of northern territory schools to respond to gaps in existing facilities.                                                                                                                                                                            the inclusion of indigenous culture, history and
                                                                                                                ‘Teachers need to identify the learning needs and                 and aspirations                                                               language in standard school curricula has also been
                                                                                                                strengths of individual Indigenous students and               – do not take into account local job opportunities or                             identified as playing an important role in building both
                                       the use of short-term teaching contracts and high                        adopt culturally appropriate teaching strategies to               provide clear linkages from school to vet, higher                             indigenous and non-indigenous student understanding
                                       teaching staff turnover in remote communities                            meet these needs.’ 7                                            education and employment                                                      and appreciation of indigenous history and culture and
                                       has also been identified as an issue, as has the                                                                                       – do not incorporate indigenous knowledge, culture                                addressing racism and discrimination.86
                                                                                                                C.1 Capability appropriate curriculum
                                       inadequate pre- and in-service training of remote                                                                                          or language.79
                                                                                                                research indicates that a large proportion of
                                       teaching staff.69                                                                                                                     the failure to adequately contextualise what is
                                                                                                                indigenous students attend school with limited basic
                                                                                                                literacy and english comprehension skills.7 (this is        being taught:
                                                                                                                particularly true of students from outer regional and         – distances schooling from students’ community and                                76
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      mceetyA 006, p.7.
                                                                                                                remote areas where Standard Australian/Aboriginal                cultural experience                                                            77
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Bourke et al. 000, p.; program and educational Subject matter
                                                                                                                english are not spoken at home.) 75                          – makes it difficult for students to establish a clear                                  expert interviews conducted in the preparation of this report.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                78
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      northern territory department of education. Learning Lessons
                                       65                                                                                                                                        framework on which to build an understanding
                                             Kronemann 007, p.; department of education, employment          in order to address the needs of these students,                                                                                                      report: An independent review of indigenous education in the
                                             and Workplace relations, northern territory emergency response.                                                                      of what they are being taught                                                       northern territory. darwin, 999, pp.5–. (ntde 999)
                                                                                                                school curricula need to incorporate intensive                                                                                                  79
                                             http://www.dest.gov.au (deWr nter)                                                                                                                                                                                       national Language and Literacy institute of Australia, South
                                       66                                                                      language and comprehension components based on                – make it difficult for students to connect school with                                 Australian teaching and curriculum centre, 996. desert Schools:
                                             Wild et al. 007, p.50.
                                       67                                                                      eSL and bilingual teaching practices that recognise               post-school education or employment options.                                        An investigation of english Language and Literacy Among young
                                             Kronemann 007, p.7.                                                                                                                                                                                                    Aboriginal people in Seven communities. canberra: department of
                                       68
                                             ibid., p.6.                                                       and accommodate students’ linguistic backgrounds              education researchers have identified the need for                                      employment, education, training and youth Affairs (deetyA), 996,
                                       69                                                                      and capabilities.                                                                                                                                     , p.77 (nLLiA); mceetyA 006, p..
                                             Bourke et al. 000, pp.0–6; Kronemann 007, p..                                                                              schools to adopt culturally and contextually relevant                             80
                                       70                                                                                                                                                                                                                            mceetyA 006, p.5.
                                             Bourke et al. 000, pp.6ff.                                                                                                     curricula that are structured to connect with and
                                       7                                                                      ‘It follows that teachers need to develop an                                                                                                    8
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      ibid.
                                             ibid.                                                                                                                            engage students.80                                                               8
                                       7
                                             mceetyA 006, p..                                                informed understanding of, at least, Aboriginal                                                                                                       ScrgSp 007, p.7.6; SeWrSBec 000, p.7.
                                       7                                                                                                                                                                                                                      8
                                             Bourke et al. 000, p.0.                                          English to enable them to understand and                      the adoption of such approaches does not imply a                                        Bourke et al. 000, p.5; ntde 999, pp.9–.
                                       7                                                                                                                                                                                                                      8
                                             Kronemann 007, p..                                                                                                            ‘dumbing down’ of curricula, but rather the adoption of                                 SeWrSBec 000, p.5.
                                       75
                                                                                                                communicate effectively with Indigenous students                                                                                                85
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Bourke et al. 000, pp.9.
                                             Senate employment, Workplace relations, Small Business and
                                                                                                                and to assist them in teaching literacy to students           curricula and teaching approaches that are:                                       86
                                             education committee. Katu Kalpa – report on the inquiry into the                                                                                                                                                         Watego L. An indigenous perspective on mathematics
                                             effectiveness of education and training programs for indigenous    for whom Standard Australian English is a second              – culturally relevant – recognise and build on students’                                contextualisation in a preschool: from Safety to empowerment.
                                             Australians. parliament of the commonwealth of Australia, 000.                                                                                                                                                          Brisbane: Queensland university of technology, pp.767–77.
                                             http://www.aph.gov.au p.. (SeWrSBec 000)                         language or dialect.’ 76                                         social, linguistic and cultural capital                                             (Watego et al.)


                                                                                                                                          Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                        5
fA c to r S co n t r i B u t i n g to p o o r i n d i g e n o u S e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S




d. teaching approach                                                           indigenous student attendance tends to be higher when9:                                    Anecdotal evidence suggests that in many cases                                 f. parental, family and community
                                                                               – teachers are seen as:                                                                      the failure of teaching staff to establish an effective                        engagement
‘A good teacher can overcome many of the
                                                                                  – being warm and supportive                                                               teacher–student relationship is linked to:
negative effects caused by the problems and                                                                                                                                                                                                                ‘The involvement of families and communities in
                                                                                  – positively encouraging student attendance and
barriers facing Indigenous children. Good teachers                                                                                                                          – low teacher expectations of indigenous students                              determining the policy directions and priorities of
                                                                                    performance                                                                                   that are reflected in curriculum content
can improve students’ learning. Indigenous                                                                                                                                                                                                                 the school is a vital part of ensuring educational
                                                                                  – setting reasonable demands on students based on
students are frequently taught in an environment                                                                                                                                  and delivery                                                             engagement, and must be fostered.’ 97
                                                                                    appropriate academic and behavioural standards
of low expectation. Non-Indigenous teachers can                                                                                                                             – inadequate pre- or in-service training in eSL
                                                                               – teachers are:                                                                                                                                                             parental, family and community engagement in the
often find it difficult to adopt culturally inclusive,                                                                                                                            teaching and cultural awareness
                                                                                 – trained in eSL-teaching techniques                                                                                                                                      design and delivery of education has been identified
appropriate and effective approaches with                                                                                                                                   – poor communication and engagement skills
                                                                                 – have an understanding of indigenous culture                                                                                                                             as an important factor in encouraging parental
Indigenous students without adequate training                                                                                                                                     that limit the ability of the teacher to engage
                                                                                 – experienced in teaching in a cross-cultural and                                                                                                                         support for education and promoting student
and preparation. Research suggests that only about                                                                                                                                effectively with students and their parents
                                                                                      bilingual situation                                                                                                                                                  attendance, retention and attainment.98
half the universities in Australia offer teaching                                                                                                                           – racist/poor attitudes to indigenous people.9
                                                                               – teachers tailor their teaching approaches to meet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           in many cases negative parental or family
courses that include Aboriginal or Indigenous                                      the specific needs of the student group by:                                              the need to strengthen teacher training to support
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           experiences of the education system have led
Studies as a core component.’ 87                                                  – structuring curricula to align with student skills                                     the improved delivery of indigenous education has
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           indigenous parents and families to feel excluded or
                                                                                   – incorporating remedial and extension work to                                           been acknowledged by education specialists and in
educational researchers note that the current                                                                                                                                                                                                              distant from the education system.
                                                                                     meet specific student needs                                                            government policy. currently, specialist indigenous
education system is set up to support a student                                                                                                                             studies and eSL-related courses are not included as                            the development of strong school, parent and
                                                                                   – linking curricula to practical experience
population in which relatively few students require                                                                                                                         core/compulsory components in pre-service teacher                              community partnerships has been identified as a key
                                                                                   – incorporatingindigenous language and culture
significant support; however, for a number of                                                                                                                               training in many universities.                                                 mechanism through which to:
                                                                                     where possible in curricula
indigenous students this is not the case.88 for these
                                                                                   – adopting teaching strategies aligned with
students there is often a need to provide broader                                                                                                                           e. indigenous teaching staff                                                   – build stronger connections between schools and
                                                                                     preferred indigenous learning styles.                                                                                                                                     local parents and community
based support to address the social, cultural, physical                                                                                                                     As noted previously, indigenous teaching staff
                                                                               in many cases, the existence of a warm and supportive                                                                                                                       – provide an opportunity for the cultural exchange
and emotional barriers that limit student learning                                                                                                                          numbers are relatively low. indigenous staff
                                                                               teacher–student relationship is seen as involving the                                                                                                                           of knowledge in relation to indigenous and non-
and attainment.                                                                                                                                                             generally makes up a relatively low proportion
                                                                               adoption of a mixed teaching and support function in                                                                                                                            indigenous knowledge and education structures
                                                                                                                                                                            of school staff and are usually in subordinate or
research indicates that teacher attitudes and                                  which the teacher provides both educational instruction
                                                                                                                                                                            assistant teaching positions.9                                                   and systems
teaching approaches play an important role in                                  and personal support.
how indigenous students feel about school and so                                                                                                                                                                                                           – align the schooling system with local community
                                                                                                                                                                            education practitioners have noted that indigenous
have a significant impact on student attendance,                               Breakout text 11 – Attributes of effective teacher–student relationships 9                                                                                                    and student needs (e.g. adjust local school terms
                                                                                                                                                                            teaching and assistant teaching staff:
learning and attainment.89 Bourke et al. go as far                                                                                                                                                                                                            to cater for the cultural needs of outer regional
as suggesting that in the case of many indigenous                                  the existence of a positive, supportive teacher–student relationship has been            ‘provide a vital link between the language, culture                                and remote communities to ensure maximum
students: ‘If they liked their teachers they liked the                             identified as a critical factor in encouraging indigenous student attendance.            and expectations of Aboriginal children and                                        participation at school while recognising cultural
school’.90                                                                                                                                                                 the community, and the culture, language and                                       activities99)
                                                                                   education researchers have noted that ‘effective classroom teachers are
                                                                                   personally warm towards, respectful of and academically demanding of                     expectations of Western schooling’.95                                         – develop and implement culturally relevant
                                                                                   students’. (osborne 00)                                                                                                                                                   curricula
                                                                                                                                                                            educational researchers have recommended that an
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           – leverage parental, family and community support
                                                                                   the key characteristics of an effective teaching relationship have been                  effort be made to train indigenous teachers so that
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               for education and promote student attendance,
                                                                                   identified by educational specialists as:                                                the number of indigenous teachers in classrooms can
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               retention and attainment
                                                                                   – being warm and supportive                                                              at least equal the percentage of indigenous people in
                                                                                                                                                                            the population.96                                                             – strengthen parental involvement in the school
                                                                                   – making realistic demands on students                                                                                                                                      and their children’s education.00
                                                                                   – acting in a responsible, business-like and systematic manner
                                                                                   – being stimulating, and imaginative. (fanshawe 989 quoted in ScrgSp 007)
                                                                                   ‘A warm teacher is one who welcomes personal friendships with students                   9
                                                                                                                                                                                  program and educational Subject matter expert interviews
87
                                                                                   and makes use of non-verbal communications such as high frequency of                           conducted in the preparation of this report.
      nieLnS SS.
88                                                                                smiling, close body distance and physical contact to convey acceptance and               9
                                                                                                                                                                                  Kronemann 007, pp.0–
      Zubrick et al. 006, p.xxxiii.                                                                                                                                        95
89                                                                                encouragement.’ (Kleinfield 97 quoted in ScrgSp 007)                                        Kronemann 007, p.6.
      Bourke et al. 000, pp.–5.                                                                                                                                         96
90                                                                                                                                                                               Bourke et al. 000, p..
      ibid., p.6.                                                                 teachers who establish rapport first (‘personal warmth’) then make active                97
                                                                                                                                                                                  Kronemann 007, p.9.
9
      osborne B. 00; ScrgSp 007, pp.–6; Kleinfield J. effective              demands (‘active demandingness’) ‘tend to be successful with … students in               98
      teachers of indian and eskimo high School Students. the School                                                                                                              Bourke et al. 000, p.; mceetyA 006, pp.–.
      review; 975, pp.0– on p.5. (Kleinfield 975)                         both integrated and all-[Indigenous] classrooms.’ (Kleinfield 975)                      99
                                                                                                                                                                                  Kronemann 007, p.6.
9                                                                                                                                                                         00
      Bourke et al. 000, p.5.                                                                                                                                                   Bourke et al. 000, p.; mceetyA 006, pp.–.


6                                                                                                                                        Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS    7
5.5 Student context



A. Student skills, identity and
behaviours
Several factors linked to indigenous students’
individual life experience have a direct impact on
                                                      B. School experience
                                                      past negative experiences of school (often linked
                                                      to the factors outlined above in the School context
                                                      section), and those of their parents and other family
                                                                                                                                                6. Intervention options
their capacity to engage with school and learn0:    members, have been identified as having a negative
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               this section identifies a series of intervention options that
                                                      impact on school attendance and retention. 0
– basic material and personal support needs                                                                                                                                                                                    can support the delivery of improved indigenous education
– school experience                                   c. School performance                                                                                                                                                    outcomes. it provides examples (case studies) of those
– foundation skills (including communication and      poor school performance and the inability to                                                                                                                             interventions and identifies the key factors that contribute
      language skills, social interaction)            ‘keep up’ with school have also been identified as
                                                      having a negative impact on school attendance
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               to the success of interventions of that type.
– personal and cultural identity
                                                      and retention. 0
– behaviour/engagement in risk-taking
      (including alcohol and drug consumption) or
      criminal activity
– learning support needs based on school
      performance and basic literacy and
      numeracy skills
– life and vocational goals and aspirations.
many of the above factors are influenced by the
students’ Social/community and home context
and the experience that they have at school (School
context) (and for that reason are not discussed
separately in this section).




0
      ibid., pp.6–.
0
      Bourke et al. 000, pp.6–.
0
      Zubrick et al. 006, p.6.


8                                                                                                            Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS           9
i n t e rv e n t i o n o p t i o n S




                                       6. the role of the                                            6. considerations when investing in
                                       philanthropic Sector                                           the indigenous Sector


                                       given that it is the role of government to take                in her article ‘challenges in indigenous philanthropy:                         the importance of providing an adequate level of
                                       responsibility for mainstream funding of education             reporting Australian grantmakers’ perspectives’0                             support to facilitate change was also highlighted.
                                       through investment in schools, philanthropic                   dr Wendy Scaife identifies grant-making to                                     Because there are often multiple and persistent
                                       Sector investment in other areas can complement                indigenous people as sitting within the parent                                 types of disadvantage present for an indigenous
                                       government funding. in light of that, philanthropic            discipline of ‘social change philanthropy’. Social                             student, providing support that either addresses
                                       investment in education can sensibly be targeted in            change philanthropy concerns itself not just with                              just one problem, or does too little to address the
                                       three main areas:                                              outcomes but also with the process through which                               multiple problems, is unlikely to achieve results. it
                                                                                                      change is achieved. its focus is on the creation of                            is particularly important to consider this factor in
                                       – services that build on or complement the core
                                                                                                      systemic change, rather than the giving of alms or                             relation to remote and outer regional programs,
                                         school and program funding provided
                                                                                                      charity.                                                                       where the level of disadvantage is often more acute.
                                         by the commonwealth and State and
                                         territory governments                                        As such it is vital that there is appropriate                                  philanthropic investments in the indigenous sector
                                       – services that help students and their families               engagement of indigenous people in programs                                    (and more generally) tend to generate greater value
                                         to access the education facilities and programs              designed to benefit them, whether the organisation                             when funding provided is sufficient to:
                                         provided by government and non-government                    is run by indigenous or non-indigenous staff.
                                                                                                                                                                                     – support rigorous evaluation and measurement of
                                         schools and not-for-profit organisations that are            interviews conducted by Scaife with philanthropic                                    impact and outcomes
                                         already supported by government funding                      investors experienced in funding programs to                                   – build ongoing organisational capacity rather than
                                       – research, policy development and advocacy aimed              support indigenous Australians identified the                                        just investing in program funding alone (e.g.
                                         at improving indigenous schooling and learning               following themes as being associated with successful                                 including the development of strategic planning,
                                         support services.                                            philanthropic investment in this area05:                                            management and financial skills and resources)
                                                                                                      – having the objective of ‘change not charity’                                 – support the dissemination of practice learnings,
                                                                                                      – entering the area as a long-term commitment                                        networking and collaboration to promote the
                                                                                                                                                                                           scaling and replication of successful programs.
                                                                                                      – recognising cultural sensitivity as being
                                                                                                          paramount in this area (a key recommendation
                                                                                                          made by funded organisations was for
                                                                                                          philanthropic investors to take the counsel
                                                                       (caption) Caption to be            of indigenous representatives grounded in
                                                                       written
                                                                                                          indigenous culture and the issues impacting
                                                                                                          participant outcomes, program design and
                                                                                                          delivery to guide funding options and plan for
                                                                                                          realistic outcomes)
                                                                                                      – recognising that assumptions of cooperation and
                                                                                                          automatic translation of programs from area
                                                                                                          to area are dangerous due to the multi-tribal
                                                                                                          environment and diversity of indigenous culture
                                                                                                          and language
                                                                                                      – maintaining flexibility when making grants and
                                                                                                          evaluating their success
                                                                                                      – accepting that usually investment over a long
                                                                                                          timeframe is required to see change occur
                                                                                                      – recognising that infrastructure funding is often
                                                                                                          badly needed before a program can succeed.




                                                                                                                                                                                     0
                                                                                                                                                                                           Scaife W. challenges in indigenous philanthropy: reporting
                                                                                                                                                                                           Australian grantmakers’ perspectives. Australian Journal of Social
                                                                                                                                                                                           issues 006, p  (Scaife 006)
                                                                                                                                                                                     05
                                                                                                                                                                                           ibid. pp.–.


50                                                                Our Children, Our Future –     A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                      5
i n t e rv e n t i o n o p t i o n S




                                       6. identified intervention (investment) options



                                       research has shown that in order to improve                      – improving student access to school/school                          A description of each of the above intervention                                5. Student and Parental engagement – the delivery
                                       indigenous education outcomes it is necessary to                     facilities                                                       categories is set out below. in some cases a single                               of school and non-school-based programs that
                                       take a holistic approach and address factors across              –   improving the school/learning environment                        intervention program may sit across more than one                                 specifically seek to engage students with school
                                       the Social/community, home, School and Student                   –   supporting the development and adoption of an                    intervention category.                                                            and learning by encouraging school attendance,
                                       context that limit the capacity of students to engage                appropriately tailored curriculum                                                                                                                  attachment and retention. this is achieved
                                                                                                                                                                             1. holistic Schooling Approach – the adoption of
                                       in school and to learn.                                          –   improving teaching approach by:                                                                                                                    by promoting parental and family support for
                                                                                                                                                                                a holistic approach to schooling that delivers a
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               student education, connecting parents with
                                       it is rare for a single intervention to address all four             – improving teacher training and development                        culturally and contextually relevant and capability
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               school and helping parents to better support their
                                       contexts. in many (if not most) cases, communities                   – supporting the adoption of more strongly                          appropriate curriculum that relates students’
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               children to learn.
                                       are reliant on a mix of interventions (and service                     student-focused teaching approaches                               learning to their life experience. Such schooling
                                       providers) to do that.                                           –   improving parental, family and community                            approaches incorporate program elements                                     6. intensive learning Support – school and non-
                                                                                                            engagement with school and involvement in the                       that address the full range of student needs                                   school-based programs that seek to provide
                                       in this report we have chosen to focus on
                                                                                                            teaching process                                                    (including their basic material needs, travel to                               intensive learning support including remedial
                                       interventions that seek to address factors in the
                                                                                                        –   providing for basic student (material and                           and from school, health and nutrition, personal                                literacy and numeracy programs, general
                                       School and Student context that reduce indigenous
                                                                                                            personal) support needs                                             and learning support requirements). this provides                              curriculum-based learning support or tutoring,
                                       students’ capacity to engage in school and to learn.
                                                                                                                                                                                a highly supportive school environment and                                     extension learning and homework support.
                                                                                                        –   strengthening student engagement with school
                                       We have identified eight intervention categories                                                                                         engages students’ parents, family and community
                                                                                                            and learning                                                                                                                                    7. School-based Vocational training and
                                       that work within a School and Student context                                                                                            in the design/delivery of day-to-day schooling.
                                                                                                        –   providing intensive learning support to address                                                                                                    development – includes career planning, school-
                                       to improve the delivery of education and the
                                                                                                            student learning support needs                                   2. tailored (Culturally relevant and Capability                                   based apprenticeships and tAfe programs etc.
                                       education outcomes of indigenous students that
                                                                                                        –   strengthening student-based vocational                              Appropriate) Curriculum – the development and
                                       are suited to philanthropic investment on the basis                                                                                                                                                                  8. Scholarships – the provision of scholarships to
                                                                                                            development and training support, including                         dissemination of a culturally and contextually
                                       that they either augment or complement existing                                                                                                                                                                         support indigenous student access to education.
                                                                                                            exposure to vocational and alternative life options                 relevant and capability appropriate curriculum
                                       government funding or provide an opportunity for
                                                                                                            and support in the development and realisation                      that is tailored to the needs of indigenous                                 the above interventions are complementary and
                                       the philanthropic Sector to invest in more innovative
                                                                                                            of vocational education, training and                               students and teaching tools to support                                      in many cases will either go hand in hand or,
                                       responses to issues affecting indigenous education.
                                                                                                            employment goals.                                                   indigenous student learning.                                                indeed need to do so, to be most effective (e.g.
                                       these interventions seek to improve indigenous                                                                                                                                                                       curriculum development and teacher training and
                                                                                                        A more detailed discussion of each of these change                   3. Appropriate (Culturally relevant and Capability
                                       education outcomes by pulling one or more of the                                                                                                                                                                     development need to be aligned if culturally relevant
                                                                                                        levers is set out in Appendix two.                                      Appropriate) Staff training – the development
                                       following ‘change levers’:                                                                                                                                                                                           and capability appropriate curricula are to be
                                                                                                                                                                                and delivery of culturally appropriate and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            implemented effectively).
                                                                                                                                                                                capability relevant pre- and in-service principal,
Figure 15 Intervention suited to non-government investment
                                                                                                                                                                                teacher and teaching support staff training that                            it is worth noting that many of the above
                                                                                                                                                                                includes skills relating to the design and delivery                         responses are equally applicable to other high-
                                         School context                                                        Student context                                                  of curricula as well as the establishment and
                                                                                                                                                                                management of supportive teacher–student
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            need student groups.

Change Levers                                                                                                                                                                   relationships.
                                        Access to     School /    Curriculum      Teaching       Parental,     Basic        Engagement Intensive          Vocational
                                        school        Learning                    approach       family and    material     with school learning          development        4. holistic Student Support – the delivery of school
                                                      environment                                community     and          and learning support          and
                                                                                                 involvement   personal                                   transition
                                                                                                                                                                                and non-school-based programs that specifically
                                                                                                               support                                    support               seek to meet students’ individual needs assisting
                                                                                                                                                                                them to access and engage in school including
                                                                                                                                                                                material, personal and learning support
Intevention Categories                                                                                                                                                          requirements. this approach also promotes
                                        1. Holistic Schooling Approach
                                                                                                                                                                                parental and family support for student education
                                                                                                               4. Holistic Student Approach                                     and learning.

                                       8.                          2.             3.                                        5.                6.          7.
                                       Scholarships                Tailored       Appropriate                               Student &         Intensive   School-
                                                                   (culturally    (culturally                               Parental          Learning    based
                                                                   relevant &     relevant &                                Engagement        Support     Vocational
                                                                   capability     capability                                                              Training &
                                                                   appropriate)   appropriate)                                                            Development
                                                                   Curriculum     Staff
                                                                                  Training




5                                                                                                                                      Our Children, Our Future –      A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS   5
i n t e rv e n t i o n o p t i o n S




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Student and parental engagement




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 development & transition Support
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      holistic Schooling Approach




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    intensive Learning Support
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Appropriate Staff training
6. Key success factors




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       holistic Student Support




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 School Based vocational
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    tailored curriculum




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Scholarships
Based on the research that has been conducted to                            Break out text 12 – Standard organisational capacity and program delivery capability        table 3 – Key Success Factors by intervention type
prepare this report and the interviews that have                            assessment criteria used when making Philanthropic investments06
been conducted with subject matter experts across                                                                                                                                                Key Success factors     description                                                                                                                                                                                 5                               6                               7                          8
the indigenous education Sector, a number of Key
Success factors (KSfs) that apply to the intervention
                                                                                 organisational capacity:                                                                                        understand / meet       meet basic needs as well as personal and learning                              l                           l                     –                              l                         l                                l                                 l                             l>
                                                                                                                                                                                                 holistic needs          support requirements
categories identified in this report have been                                   – does the organisation have a clear mission and strategy?
                                                                                                                                                                                                 Strengths-based         focus on what students know and can do as a starting                           l                           l                     –                              l                         l                                l                                 l                             l>
identified. A summary of those Key Success factors is                            – is its program execution well-aligned with mission?                                                           approach                point rather than the problems that they experience or
set out in table  below.                                                        – does it have good governance structures in place?                                                                                     their learning deficits
Well designed and delivered programs will meet                                   – does it have a strong leader?                                                                                 dual learning and       undertake activities to engage students in school and                          l                           l                     –                              –                         –                                l                                 l                             l>
the Key Success factors that have been identified as                                                                                                                                             engagement focus        learning as well as address learning requirements




                                                                                                                                                                          general
                                                                                 – does it have a capable senior management team?
applying to the intervention category to which they                                                                                                                                              culturally inclusive    recognise, acknowledge and respect indigenous                                  l                           l                     l*                             l                         l                                l                                 –                             l>
                                                                                 – is its financial management sound and does it have good financial
relate in the table.                                                                                                                                                                                                     knowledge base and cultural and linguistic background
                                                                                   management controls in place?                                                                                                         and values
it is recommended that those Key Success factors be                              – does it have a successful fundraising strategy?
taken into consideration by philanthropic investors                                                                                                                                              family and community    involve parents, families and communities in decision                          l                           l                     –                              l                         –                                –                                 –                             l>
                                                                                 – are its marketing and communications clear and consistent?                                                    engagement              making and program / school activities
when assessing programs for investment in addition
to standard organisational capacity and program                                  – does it have a strong organisational track record?                                                            Appropriate network     involve people or organisations with the skills and                            l                           –                     –                              l                         l                                –                                 l                             l>
delivery capability criteria.                                                    – does it have a track record in successful program delivery of the type                                        of collaborators        networks required to meet all support and program
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         delivery requirements
                                                                                   being considered?
                                                                                                                                                                                                 Strong school           capable leadership and management that is committed                            l                           l                     l*                             –                         l                                l                                 l                             l**
                                                                                                                                                                                                 leadership              to the delivery of positive indigenous education
                                                                                 program delivery capability:                                                                                                            outcomes
                                                                                 – does the program have adequate staffing?                                                                      high performance        expect students to perform and achieve to their full                           l                           l                     l*                             –                         –                                l                                 l                             l**
                                                                                 – is it aligned with the organisation’s mission and strategy?                                                   standards and           potential by setting reasonable demands on students




                                                                                                                                                                          School/program-based
                                                                                                                                                                                                 expectations            based on appropriate academic and behavioural
                                                                                 – does it have a logical program plan that is likely to achieve the desired                                                             standards
                                                                                   outcomes?
                                                                                                                                                                                                 tailored curriculum/    culturally and contextually relevant and capability                            l                           l                     l*                             l                         l                                l                                 l                             l**
                                                                                 – are sufficient resources allocated to the program for success?                                                program design          appropriate curriculum tailored to the needs of the
                                                                                 – are all of the necessary stakeholders on board and engaged (or are they                                                               individual student/student group
                                                                                   likely to be)?                                                                                                Specialist teaching     provision of appropriate specialist education trained                          l                           –                     l*                             –                         –                                l                                 –                             l**
                                                                                                                                                                                                 capability              teaching staff to meet the specific needs of the
                                                                                 – are effective performance evaluation/tracking processes in place
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         individual student/student group (eg eSL teaching)
                                                                                   to monitor program outcomes and assess delivery against program
                                                                                   objectives?                                                                                                   dual teaching and       provision of both learning and personal support - staff                        l                           –                     l*                             –                         –                                l                                 –                             l**
                                                                                                                                                                                                 support focus           adopt a mixed teaching and support function and
                                                                                                                                                                                                 (i.e. mixed teaching    there is adequate provision of counseling and personal
                                                                                                                                                                                                 – support approach)     support staff
                                                                                                                                                                                                 clear behavioural       Set clear guidelines for acceptable behaviour                                  l                           –                     –                              –                         l                                –                                 –                             l>
                                                                                                                                                                                                 guidelines


                                                                                                                                                                          Student-based
                                                                                                                                                                                                 positive and welcoming Student’s, parents and families feel valued and welcome                         l                           –                     –                              l                         l                                l                                 l                             l**
                                                                                                                                                                                                 learning environment
                                                                                                                                                                                                 Quality teacher–        teachers are seen as being warm and supportive and                             l                           –                     –                              l                         l                                l                                 l                             l**
                                                                                                                                                                                                 student relationships   as positively encouraging student attendance and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         performance
                                                                                                                                                                                                 critical mass           there is a sufficient number of indigenous students                            –                           –                     –                              –                         –                                –                                 –                             l>
                                                                                                                                                                          program Specific




                                                                                                                                                                                                                         at the school to provide a sense of connection to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         indigenous culture and community
                                                                                                                                                                                                 Appropriate course      pre- and in-service management, teacher and support                            –                           –                     l                              –                         –                                –                                 –                             –
                                                                                                                                                                                                 content and delivery    staff training is tailored to meet adult learning needs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         and delivered in a way that facilitates access and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         encourages engagement
06
      SvA has developed an organisational capability diagnostic tool to                                                                                                 *         refers to targeted skill development areas for teaching staff.
      assess organisational compliance with the above criteria. this tool
      is available free of charge on its website at www.socialventures.                                                                                                 **        Attributes that must apply to the school that scholarship recipients are attending.
      com.au                                                                                                                                                            >         Attributes must apply to both the scholarship design (i.e. student selection and scholarship management and coordination) and to the school that the scholarship recipients are attending.


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6.5 detailed intervention summaries



the following section reviews each of the identified    6.5. holistic schooling approach                                                        issues                                              response                                   Key Success Factors                  results
intervention categories in more detail. it provides
an outline of the key objectives and Key Success        it was noted at the beginning of this section that improvements                      – Low preschool attendance                          – School-based responses                   – understand/meet holistic needs – improved literacy
factors for each intervention category and provides     in indigenous education outcomes require a holistic approach that                    – Low school attendance                that incorporate                                        – Strengths-based approach           – improved numeracy
examples of the different intervention types.           addresses the full range of factors affecting indigenous education                   –   high student suspension and        elements from across                                    – dual learning and engagement – improved attendance
                                                        across the Social/community, home, School and Student context.                           expulsion rates                    the School and                                              focus
the case studies in this Section are provided by                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 – increased retention
                                                                                                                                                                                    Student intervention
way of example only. the programs set out in the        An holistic Schooling Approach seeks to do this to by addressing all                 –   poor student numeracy and literacy                                                         – culturally inclusive               – improved school
                                                                                                                                                                                    spectrum to establish
case studies have not been independently reviewed       of the above factors through the provision of school-based support                   –   Low school retention               a supportive school-                                    – family and community                   performance
or audited. their inclusion in the report should        and learning programs. this is done by going beyond providing                        –   Limited access to or use of        based environment                                           engagement                       –   improved primary to
not, therefore, be seen as a recommendation for         the standard educational curriculum and providing values and                             mainstream services                in which students are                                   –   Appropriate network of               secondary transition
funding. As a matter of good practice philanthropic     behavioural education, incentives to engage in school (e.g. sport                    –   poor health and nutrition          assisted to engage                                          collaborators                    –   improved secondary to
investors interested in funding interventions such      and arts-based programs), personal support (e.g. counselling) and                    –   poor housing                       with school and access                                  –   Strong school leadership             tertiary transition
                                                        basic needs assistance (e.g. meals). these supports would ideally                                                           learning opportunities                                  –   high performance standards       –   increased confidence
as those identified in this report should ensure they                                                                                        –   Low parent/family literacy and
undertake appropriate due diligence before investing    be provided through students’ home and Social environments.                              numeracy                                                                                       and expectations                 –   heightened aspirations for
in any programs to make sure that the programs in       current levels of disadvantage mean that often they are not;                         –   Low parent/family engagement in                                                            –   tailored curriculum/program          the future
question align with their funding strategy and meet     nevertheless, they must be in place for students to succeed at                           education and/or employment                                                                    design                           –   improved physical health
the investment criteria.                                school and reach their potential.                                                    –   Language barriers                                                                          –   Specialist teaching capacity     –   improved behaviour
                                                                                                                                             –   Lack of access to education                                                                –   dual teaching and support        –   improved personal
                                                        figure 6 illustrates the multi-layered student learning and
                                                                                                                                             –   unwelcoming school environment                                                                 focus (i.e. mixed teaching           relationships
                                                        support model that an holistic School Based Approach uses.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                – support approach)              –   improved social skills
                                                                                                                                             –   inappropriate school curriculum
                                                        By its nature, the holistic School-based Approach seeks to                                                                                                                          –   clear behavioural guidelines     –   improved emotional health
                                                                                                                                             –   poor teaching approach
                                                        incorporate aspects of all of the other intervention types covered                                                                                                                  –   positive and welcoming
                                                                                                                                             –   Lack of indigenous teaching staff                                                                                               –   Stronger engagement with
                                                        in the section.                                                                                                                                                                         learning environment                 parents and community
                                                                                                                                             –   poor student skills and behaviour
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            –   Quality teacher–student          –   Better cross-cultural
                                                        Figure 16 Holistic student learning and support model                                –   negative school experience                                                                     relationships                        understanding
                                                        (as applied by Djarragun College)                                                    –   poor school performance

                                                        Pre- Prep 1    2     3   4    5    6   7    8       9   10   11   12   13+
                                                        Prep                                                                              case Study
                                                                                                                                          djarragun College –                                                                                the college’s success is attributed to its use of an integrated
                                                                      Focus on Academic and Vocational Learning                           Gordonvale, Queensland                                                                             education model that works to address students’ basic and
                                                                                                                                          djarragun college delivers pre-prep to year  schooling to                                        personal support requirements, address behavioural issues and
                                                                                                                                          students from indigenous communities in cairns, yarrabah, cape                                     provide tailored educational programs to meet their individual
                                                                                                                                          york and the torres Strait islands. it also has a vocational education                             learning requirements. the design and delivery of the above
                                                                             Focus on Values and Behaviour                                and training (vet) program for post-year  students. it offers                                    program are driven by the School principal Jean illingworth. the
                                                                                                                                          both academic and vocational streams.                                                              school uses a values-based approach to guide the behaviour
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             of both staff and students and there is a focus placed on the
                                                                           Engagement in School and Learning                              the school caters for students who are extremely disadvantaged,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             establishment of close supportive relationships between teachers
                                                                                                                                          many of whom would not ordinarily participate in school. over
                                                                                     Personal Support                                                                                                                                        and students. School systems and staffing are structured to allow
                                                                                                                                          95% of the students attending the school are indigenous. over
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             staff to be responsive to the learning and personal support needs
                                                                                                                                          the last six and a half years the school has taught 600 students.
                                                                                 Provision of Basic Needs                                                                                                                                    of students, with investments being made in both teaching and
                                                                                                                                          the college has achieved a high level of success compared to                                       counselling staff. cultural activities and language are incorporated
                                                                                                                                          national indigenous indices in promoting school attendance,                                        into the school curriculum and activities, and parents and the
                                                                                                                                          completion and transition into further education and employment                                    community are actively involved in the life of the school.
                                                                                                                                          with:
                                                                                                                                          – school attendance rates between 65 and 75%
                                                                                                                                          – year-on-year retention rates between 70 and 75%
                                                                                                                                          – year 0 completion rates between 80 and 85%
                                                                                                                                          – year 0 to  completion rates between 90 and 95%
                                                                                                                                          – graduate transitions into further education and employment
                                                                                                                                             of approximately 70% (based on combined graduate outcomes
                                                                                                                                             over the last two years).


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6.5. tailored curriculum (culturally relevant and capability appropriate)                                                                           6.5. Appropriate staff training (culturally relevant and capability appropriate)
       issues                                 response                     Key Success Factors                  results                                     issues                                     response                                             Key Success Factors                          results

   – Low preschool attendance               – School-based responses     – understand/meet holistic          – improved literacy                        – unwelcoming school                       – School or sectoral-based                           – culturally inclusive*                        – improved literacy
   – Low school attendance                    that focus on aligning       needs                             – improved numeracy                            environment                                responses that focus                             – Strong school leadership*                    – improved numeracy
   – high student suspension and              school curriculum                                                                                         – inappropriate school                         on providing school
                                                                         – Strengths-based approach          – improved attendance                                                                                                                      – high performance standards                   – increased retention
       expulsion rates                        with students’                                                                                                curriculum                                 management and
                                                                         – dual learning and                 – increased retention                                                                                                                          and expectations*                          – improved attendance
                                              specific learning                                                                                                                                        teacher training to assist
   –   poor student numeracy and literacy                                  engagement focus                                                             – poor teaching approach                                                                        – tailored curriculum/ program
                                              and development                                                – improved school                                                                         staff to improve school                                                                         – improved school
   –   Low school retention                                              – culturally inclusive                                                                                                        environment, curriculum                              design*
                                              requirements (such                                                performance                                                                                                                                                                              performance
   –   poverty/low household income                                                                                                                                                                    and teaching approach                            – Specialist teaching capacity*
                                              responses are often        – family and community              – increased confidence                                                                                                                                                                    – improved behaviour
   –   Limited access to or use of            linked to Staff training     engagement                                                                                                                  to support improved                              – dual teaching and support
                                                                                                             – heightened aspirations for                                                                                                                                                              – Stronger engagement with
       mainstream services                    and Skill development                                                                                                                                    indigenous                                           focus (i.e. mixed teaching
                                                                         – Strong school leadership             the future                                                                                                                                                                               parents and community
   –   Low parent/family literacy and         responses                                                                                                                                                                                                     – support approach)*
       numeracy                                                          – high performance standards        – improved secondary to                                                                                                                                                                   – Better cross-cultural
                                                                           and expectations                     tertiary transition                                                                                                                     – Appropriate course content                     understanding
   –   Low parent/family engagement in                                                                                                                                                                                                                      and delivery
       education and/or employment                                       – tailored curriculum/program       – improved behaviour                                                                                                                                                                      – improved primary to
   –   inadequate parenting and early                                      design                            – improved social skills                                                                                                                                                                    secondary transition
       childhood development                                                                                 – improved emotional                                                                                                                                                                      – improved secondary to
   –   unwelcoming school environment                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    tertiary transition
                                                                                                             – Stronger engagement with
   –   inappropriate school curriculum                                                                          parents and community                                                                                                                                                                  – heightened aspirations for
   –   poor teaching approach                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            the future
                                                                                                             – Better cross-cultural
   –   Lack of indigenous teaching staff                                                                        understanding                                                                                                                                                                          – increased confidence
   –   Low parent engagement                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           – improved personal
   –   poor student skills and behaviour                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 relationships
   –   negative school experience
   –   poor school performance


A tailored Curriculum is one that is developed to meet the needs of      yule Brook started running its Big picture program in 005 at the           Staff training and Skill development focuses on developing the                                     the Stronger Smarter principals program is available to school
the individual student or student group. in many cases this means        instigation of its School principal paul Billings. the program works        skills of teaching and management staff to design and deliver the                                  principals and includes support for teachers. it aims to address
that in addition to the standard academic offering, schools will         with the home group classes of  to 5 students. individual                school curriculum and extra-curricular programs to suit the needs                                  issues of poor teaching approach, poor curriculum and poor school
provide eSL-based programs, behaviour management and personal            learning plans are prepared for each student. those plans are               of their indigenous students. it also focuses on teaching staff how                                environment.
development programs, cultural and language studies for indigenous       developed collaboratively by the student, their parents and                 to create a more culturally inclusive school environment.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        the program is run in groups with a maximum of 0. principals
and non-indigenous students, school engagement programs and a            teachers and are based around the student’s personal interests
                                                                                                                                                     interventions of this type often include eSL training, cultural                                    complete a one-week residential course and develop an action plan
dedicated vocational stream. A tailored curriculum is not a ‘dumbed-     and passions. mentoring relationships are established to support
                                                                                                                                                     awareness training, intensive support and relationship                                             for their schools to address the above issues. ieLi then provides
down’ curriculum and assists students to achieve to their full           all students and formal pastoral care sessions are built into home
                                                                                                                                                     management and counselling-based skills training. in addition to                                   follow-up support to the principals and their staff. dr Sarra believes
potential rather than expecting less of them.                            room activities on a daily basis in term one and then weekly after
                                                                                                                                                     that, it can include the establishment of professional mentoring                                   that the key to improving indigenous schooling and educational
                                                                         that. Students also undertake ongoing workplace internships
case Study                                                               called “Learning through internship” which are linked to their
                                                                                                                                                     programs and programs designed to assist the showcasing and                                        outcomes is to get principals to take responsibility for the results
                                                                                                                                                     dissemination of good school practice.                                                             in their school and for them to continue making the social and
Yule Brook Secondary College – the “Big Picture inspired School”         learning plans. Students then present their work for assessment by
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        academic changes required until they succeed in delivering results.
Program, Western Australia                                               way of a public exhibition four times a year. their mentors, parents        case Study
yule Brook Secondary college provides schooling for approximately        and teachers witness these exhibitions.                                                                                                                                        the program is in its first year; a formal evaluation is planned but
                                                                                                                                                     Stronger Smarter Principals Program – indigenous education
00 students each year from years 8 to 0 in Western Australia.                                                                                                                                                                                         is yet to be conducted. the program is based on dr Sarra’s own
                                                                         yule Brook is also a clontarf football Academy School. this                 leadership institute, Queensland
Approximately % of the students at yule Brook are indigenous.                                                                                                                                                                                         experiences as principal of cherbourg State School where under his
                                                                         program is discussed in Section 6.5.5 Student engagement.                   the Stronger Smarter principals program was developed by dr
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        leadership there was a 9% reduction in unexplained absenteeism
the school operates the “Big picture inspired School” program for its                                                                                chris Sarra. dr Sarra is recognised for his success in improving
                                                                         the school is currently conducting an external evaluation of the                                                                                                               and a 58% improvement in year  literacy within two years. under
year 8 students. they plan to expand it to years 9 and 0 in the next                                                                                results and retention at cherbourg School in Queensland. he is the
                                                                         Big picture program; however, anecdotal results are good and some                                                                                                              dr Sarra’s leadership the school had 8% of year 7 students within
two years. the program is designed for students who are at high risk                                                                                 director of the indigenous education Leadership institute (ieLi).
                                                                         promising data have emerged. for example, in 006 prior to the                                                                                                                 the Queensland State average band for literacy, compared to 0% in
of leaving school prior to completing year , or in some cases, year
                                                                         program’s commencement, year 8 students were suspended for a                                                                                                                   999 before he joined the school.
0. the program is based on a model developed by the Big picture
                                                                         total of 86.5 days, whereas after the program was introduced in
company in the united States, which is now being made available to
                                                                         007, students were only suspended for a total of 9 days.
schools in Australia through the Big picture company of Australia.                                                                                                                                                                                      * refers to targeted skill development areas


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6.5. holistic student support
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       (caption) Caption to be
       issues                            response                         Key Success Factors                  results                                                                                                                                                                                 written

   – poverty/low household             – School and non-school         – understand/meet                    – improved literacy
       income                            based responses that             holistic needs                    – improved numeracy
   – Limited access to or use of         focus on meeting                 Strengths-based
                                                                                                            – improved attendance
       mainstream services               students’ basic needs            approach
                                         as a precursor to their                                            – increased retention
   – poor health and nutrition                                         – culturally inclusive
                                         being ready and able to                                            – improved school
   – poor or unsafe community                                          – family and community
                                         participate effectively                                               performance
       environment                                                        engagement
                                         in school including                                                – increased confidence
   – negative school experience          health, nutrition (e.g.       – Appropriate network of
                                                                          collaborators                     – heightened aspirations for
   – Low parental/family                 breakfast and lunch
                                                                                                               the future
       engagement with the               programs), personal           – tailored curriculum/
                                         counselling, material            program design                    – improved behaviour
       education system/
       employment                        aid (in the form of           – positive and welcoming             – improved personal
                                         school uniforms or               learning environment                 relationships
   – Lack of access to education
                                         equipment), transport                                              – improved physical health
   – poor student skills and                                           – Quality teacher–
       behaviour                                                          student relationships             – improved social skills

   – poor school performance                                                                                – improved emotional health




integrated Support Programs seek to address students’                  the program seeks to capitalise on the human resources already               the Smith family is tracking both quantitative and qualitative                                     dream the pathways works with at-risk young people on
basic personal and support needs, behavioural issues, school           present in schools (with a particular focus on leveraging the skills         data. information gathered to date suggests that there is good                                     an individual and group basis to support them to engage in
engagement and basic literacy and numeracy skill deficits. they        of tertiary-educated teachers) and to identify and remove the                engagement with the program. An example is a school in Katherine                                   education, training and employment as well as addressing basic
tend to work with students who are operating below the standard        barriers that prevent children from engaging in school                       where over half of the students were not having breakfast before                                   personal needs. the program includes:
school literacy and numeracy levels/ are at risk of leaving school.    and learning.                                                                the Breakfast with a mentor program began. Since the program
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       – engagement activities with participants and family or
                                                                                                                                                    commenced many of the parents have volunteered to pay for
the interventions are usually multi-faceted and in some cases have     Activities are developed in consultation with the community to link                                                                                                                 community members
                                                                                                                                                    their children’s lunch at school. the School principal attributes
a dual focus on engaging both students and their parents or carers,    students, families and the broader community with teaching staff                                                                                                                – liaison support for transitions into high school
                                                                                                                                                    this to the program having built greater trust in the school in the
with some programs seeking to act as a bridge between the family       and the local school(s). in the case of this program, in addition to
                                                                                                                                                    parent body. the principal also reports improvement in behaviour,                                  – intensive school retention activities
and the school. these types of programs operate best when they         the Key Success factors identified in the table above, the program
                                                                                                                                                    readiness to learn, punctuality and parent participation.                                          – alternate education and training
are developed in consultation with parents/the local community in      works with schools where there is strong school leadership (we
                                                                                                                                                    teachers report improved relationships with withdrawn and
order to understand and address the relevant barriers to education.    note this factor is not always a key factor in programs using                                                                                                                   – supported transitions to employment and tertiary education
                                                                                                                                                    disconnected students.
                                                                       this intervention).                                                                                                                                                             – vocational skills assessments and training.
case Studies
                                                                       Because activities are developed in consultation with community,                                                                                                                centacare tracked participants in their 006 program and found:
learning for life – the Smith Family,                                                                                                               dream the Pathways – Centacare Wilcannia Forbes,
northern territory                                                     activities vary from place to place. Some examples of the sorts of                                                                                                              – 80% demonstrated increased connection to culture
                                                                                                                                                    new South Wales
the Smith family has developed an approach to its Learning for         activities that are undertaken are:
                                                                                                                                                    dream the pathways is a suite of youth Services programs run                                       – 00% increased knowledge of full-time education, training and
Life program in the northern territory that is specifically tailored   – Breakfast with a mentor – where children are given a meal and              by centacare in Wilcannia forbes. centacare Wilcannia forbes                                           employment options
to working with disadvantaged indigenous people. the program              connected with interested adults in their community                       provides early intervention programs to young families, youth                                      – 80% demonstrated improved literacy and numeracy
started in nine northern territory school communities and is           – Literacy programs – where high school students do literacy work            services, counselling and community development programs to
growing (currently it operates in  communities). it is envisaged                                                                                                                                                                                     – 80% have employability and work-readiness skills
                                                                          with primary school students                                              people in western nSW.
that this model will be used by the Smith family in other                                                                                                                                                                                              – 70% actively pursuing a life goal.
                                                                       – Sports and recreation programs – that allow children to play               it supports 600 at-risk young people aged  to  in rural
indigenous communities across Australia.
                                                                          sport and participate in cultural activities such as music work-          and remote towns of central and far west new South Wales.
the Smith family estimates that around 000 people are                    shops linked to the local school or involving local school staff.         Approximately 75% of the young people they support are
involved in some way with their northern territory Learning                                                                                         indigenous and experience most or all of the issues outlined in
for Life programs. the program targets disadvantaged to highly                                                                                      the table above.
disadvantaged indigenous students in remote, regional and some
urban communities.



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dubbo Cultural leadership Program – Mission Australia,              6.5.5 Student and parental engagement                                                issues                                           response                                       Key Success Factors                results
new South Wales
mission Australia runs the dubbo cultural Leadership program.       Student engagement programs are designed to promote student                                                                       – School and non-school-
                                                                                                                                                     – Low school attendance                                                                         – understand/meet holistic          – improved literacy
the program seeks to improve school retention in primary and        attendance and retention.                                                                                                             based programs aimed                           needs Strengths-based
                                                                                                                                                     – high student suspension and                                                                                                       – improved numeracy
secondary school. it involves the four high schools and one         most programs provide an activity that the students enjoy and tie                    expulsion rates                                  at engaging students                           approach
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         – improved attendance
primary school in dubbo.                                                                                                                                                                                  with school and or                         – culturally inclusive
                                                                    it to school attendance. Activities tend to revolve around sport,                – poor student numeracy and
                                                                                                                                                                                                          learning with a view to                                                        – increased retention
the program works with indigenous students from years 5 to        arts and the media and will often involve excursions and camps.                      literacy                                                                                    – Appropriate network of
                                                                                                                                                                                                          encouraging increased                                                          – improved school performance
who are considered to be at risk of early school leaving.           if successful, the activities will lead to increased attendance, but             – Low school retention                               school attendance and                          collaborators
                                                                    unless the school associated with the program is delivering quality                                                                                                                                                  – improved secondary to tertiary
                                                                                                                                                     – Limited access to or use of                        improved participation                     – Strong school leadership
the program is essentially a preventative strategy. Schools refer                                                                                                                                                                                                                          transition
                                                                    education to students improved performance outcomes will                             mainstream services                              as a precursor to                          – tailored curriculum/
at-risk students to the program and caseworkers then assist each    not necessarily follow.                                                                                                                                                                                              – increased confidence
                                                                                                                                                     – poor health and nutrition
                                                                                                                                                                                                          improved education                             program design
individual to overcome the challenges that stand between them                                                                                                                                             outcomes                                                                       – heightened aspirations for the
and staying in the education system. the program includes:          the better programs also help students with career pathway                       – Low parental/family engagement                                                                – clear behavioural
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           future
                                                                    planning and help them to develop the life skills they need to                       with the education system/                                                                      guidelines
– after-school sessions that are designed to be educational and                                                                                                                                                                                                                          – improved behaviour
                                                                    succeed. they develop the student’s aspirations, and once a career                   employment                                                                                  – positive and welcoming
     support vocational development while linking into cultural     seems like a real possibility the student has a good reason to                                                                                                                       learning environment            – improved personal relationships
                                                                                                                                                     – unwelcoming school
     activities and being fun                                       start learning and is more likely to want to engage with school.                                                                                                                                                     – improved physical health
                                                                                                                                                         environment                                                                                 – Quality teacher–student
– school work support for suspended students                                                                                                         – poor student skills and behaviour                                                                 relationships                   – improved social skills
                                                                    currently, many of these programs appear to be targeted at boys
– referrals to counselors, family mediation and support agencies                                                                                     – negative school experience                                                                                                        – improved emotional health
                                                                    rather than girls.
– connection with Aboriginal elders and mentors.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         – Stronger engagement with
the program seeks to promote respect and pride through a
                                                                    case Study                                                                                                                                                                                                             parents and community
strong focus on Aboriginal culture allowing students to make a      Clontarf Football Academies – Clontarf Foundation,
connection with their own culture, spirit and the countries they    Western Australia and northern territory
are from.                                                           the clontarf foundation runs a series of football Academies with
                                                                                                                                                  it is a precondition of participation in the Academy that the
                                                                    a group of schools. currently, clontarf football Academies are
fifty-two students participated in the program in 006 of whom                                                                                    student attend school. to maintain their position in the football
                                                                    attached to 0 schools. Any indigenous boy in years 7 to  at a
9 had been in contact with the juvenile justice system before                                                                                    Academy participants need to show commitment towards both
                                                                    clontarf football Academy secondary school can apply to be part
being referred to the program. of those 5 participants:                                                                                          the Academy program and their education. Students are expected
                                                                    of the program. there are three primary school programs. there are
                                                                                                                                                  to be fully engaged with school, plan for their future and stay
– 6 went on to attend some form of education                       expected to be 00 students involved in the 008 school year.
                                                                                                                                                  out of trouble.
–  moved
                                                                    the bulk of the students involved in the program experience, or are
–  left the program                                                                                                                              the results to date show improved retention, attendance, year 
                                                                    strongly at risk of experiencing, some or all of the issues identified
–  went back into detention.                                                                                                                     completion and, anecdotally, an improvement in engagement in
                                                                    in the table above.
                                                                                                                                                  post-school employment. examples of these outcomes include:
                                                                    Students participating in an Academy:
                                                                                                                                                  – mid-West Academy – indigenous male retention rates for years
                                                                    – receive specialist football coaching
                                                                                                                                                      0 to (57%) now exceed non-indigenous retention rates (55%)
                                                                    – participate in structured training and competition games
                                                                                                                                                  – the clontarf School (first Academy) – no indigenous boy
                                                                    – have the opportunity to work with and be coached by
                                                                                                                                                      had completed year  until the program started; in 006
                                                                       professional AfL players
                                                                                                                                                       indigenous students enrolled in year  over 0 of whom
                                                                    – receive mentoring and support from program staff with a                         completed school
                                                                       focus on education, attendance and life skills development.
                                                                                                                                                  – Kununurra Academy – had 5 boys in the program in 007 who
                                                                    participants are also given breakfast and learn about                             had an average attendance rate over the previous three years of
                                                                    healthy nutrition.                                                                5%; boys now have attendance rates ranging from 50 to 90%.




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i n t e rv e n t i o n o p t i o n S




6.5.6 intensive Learning Support
        issues                           response                          Key Success Factors             results

   – Low school attendance               – School and non-school        – understand/meet holistic needs – improved literacy
   – poor student numeracy and              based-programs                 Strengths-based approach           – improved numeracy
       literacy                             providing remedial          – dual learning and engagement        – improved attendance
                                            and extension learning         focus
   – Low school retention                                                                                     – increased retention
                                            support
   – Low parent/family literacy and                                     – culturally inclusive
                                                                                                              – improved school
       numeracy                                                         – Strong school leadership               performance
   – Low parent/family engagement in                                    – high performance standards          – improved secondary to
       education/employment                                                and expectations                      tertiary transition
   – Language barriers                                                  – tailored curriculum/program         – increased confidence
   – Lack of access to education                                           design
                                                                                                              – heightened aspirations
   – inappropriate school curriculum                                    – Specialist teaching capacity           for the future
   – poor teaching approach                                             – dual teaching and support
                                                                           focus (i.e. mixed teaching
   – unwelcoming school environment
                                                                           – support approach)
   – poor student skills and behaviour
                                                                        – positive and welcoming learning
   – negative school experience                                            environment
   – poor school performance                                            – Quality teacher–student
                                                                           relationships


intensive learning Support encompasses programs where                  the program caters for primary school-aged children with literacy               Partnership for Success – Polly Farmer Foundation,                                                 in the case of this program, in addition to the Key Success factors
additional academic support is made available in addition to           at least two years behind their chronological age. the majority                 Western Australia, northern territory and South Australia                                          identified in the table above, the program requires parent, family
the ordinary school curriculum. common forms of this type of           of participants are at risk of disengaging and unable to access                 the polly farmer foundation’s partnerships for Success program                                     and community engagement (families must sign a compact
intervention are intensive literacy and numeracy programs during       remedial assistance for financial reasons.                                      sets up and runs after school homework clubs. the program was                                      committing to getting their children to school) and a strong
schools hours and ‘homework’ clubs after school. these programs                                                                                        established in 997 and currently there are approximately 00                                      network of collaborators.
                                                                       Students attend morning classes five days per week then attend
usually seek to help indigenous students to increase their literacy                                                                                    participants across 0 sites in regional areas of Western Australia,
                                                                       school in the afternoon as usual. individual learning plans are                                                                                                                    in the 0 years since the program began in 997,  students
and numeracy skills at a faster than average rate, with the                                                                                            northern territory and South Australia.
                                                                       prepared for each student. Students receive substantial time with                                                                                                                  have gone on to further education, training or employment.
ambition of bringing them up to the level they should be for their
                                                                       muLtiLit instructors and trained volunteers receiving instruction               partnerships for Success targets indigenous students who show                                      in Karratha only one student had completed year  prior to
age and school year.
                                                                       in reading and spelling skills in small groups (:5 teacher                     academic promise and have the capacity, interest and potential to                                  the program’s inception and in the 0 years since that site was
case Studies                                                           student ratio).                                                                 complete their secondary education. most participating students                                    established, 5 students participating in the program have gone
                                                                                                                                                       attend school regularly and are likely to have experienced a                                       on to further education, training or employment, with 7 of them
Multilit – Macquarie university and the exodus Foundation,             results from exodus foundation’s Ashfield program in Semester 
                                                                                                                                                       moderate but not severe level of disadvantage.                                                     going on to university.
new South Wales                                                        in 006 indicate that on average over the course of the 0-week
muLtiLit is an intensive remedial literacy program developed by        program students achieved:                                                      the partnership for Success program seeks to recognise potential,
the macquarie university Special education centre (muSec). A                                                                                           provide a positive learning environment and intensive support
                                                                       – 8-month improvement in reading accuracy
separate for-profit entity has been established by the university to                                                                                   to learn and promote responsibility for self and future. At each
market and sell the program across Australia. discounts are given      – .5-month improvement in reading comprehension                               site, the program sets up an ‘enrichment centre’. the centre will
to non-profit organisations including schools. there are a number      – .5-month improvement in single-word recognition                             typically have internet workstations, study areas, a kitchen and
of different ways in which the program can be delivered, including     – 9-month improvement in spelling                                              eating areas. participants come to the centre after school under the
by parents at home and through schools. the university can be                                                                                          supervision of a project leader. they do homework and can seek
                                                                       – 7% increase in words read correctly per minute.
funded by foundations to deliver the program.                                                                                                          assistance when needed for their academic work, personal and
                                                                       these outcomes compare with standard-progress results for low-                  family issues and for career pathway planning. each student has an
An example of this is the exodus foundation which facilitates the      progress readers whose typical gain in reading and related skills in            individual Learning plan which is prepared in partnership with the
running of muLtiLit as a 0-week intensive course staffed by a         the same period would be around two months.                                     student’s teachers. personal and cultural development programs
team from muSec at their Ashfield and redfern locations in new
                                                                                                                                                       are offered in non-school time.
South Wales. the program commenced in Ashfield in 996 and
more recently in redfern in 007, the latter specifically targeting
indigenous students.



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6.5.7 School-based vocational training and development programs
        issues                           response                          Key Success Factors                  results

   – Low year 0 and  retention      – School and non-school-        – understand/meet holistic            – increased retention
   – Limited access to or use of         based programs that              needs Strengths-based              – improved attendance
       mainstream services               expose students to               approach
                                                                                                             – improved school
                                         vocational and life           – dual learning and
   – Low parental/family                                                                                        performance
                                         options, encourage               engagement focus
       engagement with the                                                                                   – improved secondary to
                                         students to set vocational
       education system/                                               – Appropriate network of                 tertiary transition
                                         and life goals and support
       employment                                                         collaborators
                                         vocational planning and                                             – increased confidence
   – inappropriate school                development                   – Strong school leadership
                                                                                                             – heightened aspirations for
       curriculum                                                      – high performance standards
                                       – in some cases this                                                     the future
   – poor student skills and             includes intensive support       and expectations
                                                                                                             – improved behaviour
       behaviour                         to assist students to         – tailored curriculum/program
   – negative school experience          transition from school           design
   – poor school performance             into further education,       – positive and welcoming
                                         vocational training and          learning environment
                                         employment
                                                                       – Quality teacher–student
                                                                          relationships




Vocational training and development programs seek to increase          there are currently 66 indigenous students between 7 and                    Jobs 4u2 – Ganbina, Shepparton, Victoria                                                         the programs set high expectations for student and employee
awareness of, and interest in, vocational or career options, assist    years of age participating in the program.                                     ganbina is a local indigenous vocational development and                                         performance and place responsibility on participants to be
students in identifying career preferences and developing and                                                                                         employment support agency. it runs a suite of programs that seeks                                accountable for their vocational development and career path.
                                                                       A program coordinator provides or facilitates access to support on a
implementing career development plans. they often involve the                                                                                         to assist indigenous young people to realise the role of education
                                                                       case-management basis. from years 0 to , the coordinator helps                                                                                                               ganbina is in the process of conducting a three-year evaluation
provision of school-based vocational training. they can also provide                                                                                  in enabling them to access vocational training and employment
                                                                       each student with career planning, choosing the most appropriate                                                                                                                of the results of its programs. early results from schools operating
intensive transition support to assist students to transition from                                                                                    opportunities. the above programs include:
                                                                       subjects and learning stream (vocational or academic), and provides                                                                                                             ganbina programs show an increase in indigenous school retention
school into further education, vocational training and employment.
                                                                       support or referrals for family and personal issues. the coordinator           – school-based programs – that provide students with exposure                                    from  to % as well as an increase in indigenous student
they tend to be hands-on and to have a strong practical focus.         helps year  students identify the most appropriate post-school                   to vocational options, assist students in identifying career                                 enrolments. An independent evaluation of its 006 program
they often include vocational assessment, career planning, resume      options and then continues to support the student with any career                  opportunities and helping them to develop career plans to                                    indicated that 97% of students successfully completed the program
writing and interview skills, work readiness and vocational skills     or personal and family issues at the post-school stage. for example,               pursue those opportunities                                                                   and either continued school or accessed employment.
training, work experience and work placements.                         this might include taking a student to a job interview, helping them           – employment support programs – that help older students and
                                                                       buy the right clothes for work or providing a referral for counselling.            young people who have disengaged from education to develop
case Studies                                                           Students in years  and  are connected with a mentor from                       vocational skills and to access employment opportunities
Midlands indigenous Youth Program – the Beacon Foundation,             a business or community organisation. the mentor relationship
                                                                                                                                                      – skill-based programs – including driver education and financial
Swan Valley, Western Australia                                         continues through the transition from school to further education,
                                                                                                                                                          management
the Beacon foundation operates the midlands indigenous youth           training or employment.
program in partnership with the Swan valley education district and                                                                                    – youth leadership and development programs
                                                                       An independent evaluation report for the midland indigenous
three high schools in the Swan valley area. the program seeks to                                                                                      – scholarship and awards programs – to promote equality of
                                                                       youth project completed in June 007 found the program
help young indigenous people who have graduated from high school                                                                                          access and local indigenous student achievement.
                                                                       dramatically boosted school-to-work transition rates and reduced
to make a successful and sustained transition to further education,
                                                                       anti-social behaviour. About 90% of participants in the program
training and employment.
                                                                       went on to employment at the end of compulsory schooling,
                                                                       compared to 67% of those in the general perth population.




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i n t e rv e n t i o n o p t i o n S




6.5.8 Scholarship programs
       issues                             response                      Key Success Factors                                              results

   – Low year 0 and  retention      – Student or school-       – understand/meet holistic needs>                                  – improved literacy
   – poverty/low household income         based scholarships      – Strengths-based approach               >
                                                                                                                                     – improved numeracy
                                          providing funding for
   – Limited access to or use of                                  – dual learning an engagement focus>                               – increased retention
                                          school fees/student
       mainstream services                                        – culturally inclusive         >
                                                                                                                                     – improved school
                                          support requirements
   – Low parental/family engagement       to facilitate access    – family and community engagement>                                     performance
       with the education system/         to education                                                                               – improved secondary
                                                                  – Appropriate network of collaborators>
       employment                                                                                                                        to tertiary transition
                                                                  – Strong school leadership**
   – Lack of access to education                                                                                                     – increased confidence
                                                                  – high performance standards and
   – inappropriate school curriculum                                                                                                 – heightened
                                                                        expectations**
   – poor school performance                                                                                                             aspirations for the
                                                                  – tailored curriculum/program design**
   – poor student numeracy and                                                                                                           future
                                                                  – Specialist teaching capability**
       literacy                                                                                                                      – Better cross-cultural
                                                                  – dual teaching and support focus                                      understanding
                                                                        (i.e. mixed teaching – support approach)**                                                                                                                                                                                            (caption) Caption
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              to be written
                                                                  – clear behavioural guidelines               >


                                                                  – positive and welcoming learning environment**
                                                                  – Quality teacher–student relationships**
                                                                  – critical mass>


Scholarships create an opportunity for students with academic             case Studies                                                                                 the school has strong and committed leadership. it focuses on
and/or leadership qualities to access education and to help them to                                                                                                    the potential of its students and provides a positive learning
                                                                          indigenous education Program – St Joseph’s College,
realise their potential.                                                                                                                                               environment, indigenous staff, as well as intensive support to
                                                                          hunters hill, new South Wales
                                                                                                                                                                       learn. the school’s culture of supporting boys in all aspects of
traditionally scholarship programs take the form of a donation            St Joseph’s college is a private secondary college providing
                                                                                                                                                                       their lives – academic, social and emotional – helps to create the
that allows a student to access school. however, for scholarship          boarding facilities in Sydney. the Scholarship program allows
                                                                                                                                                                       environment required for students to stay and achieve their full
programs to be effective for indigenous students who often have a         indigenous boys from regional and rural new South Wales from
                                                                                                                                                                       potential. the school takes a holistic approach, seeking to provide
range of support requirements, they need to provide for the holistic      year 7 onwards to take up a boarding scholarship at St Joseph’s
                                                                                                                                                                       support across all the different life contexts (Social/community,
needs of the student across the Social/community, home, School            college in Sydney and stay until they complete year . of the
                                                                                                                                                                       home, School and Student) that affect the ability of the student to
and Student contexts. in effect, successful indigenous scholarships       school’s 970 students, 750 are boarders and  (5%) of those are
                                                                                                                                                                       connect with school and learn effectively.
fund students to access an education like that provided under the         indigenous students on scholarships.
holistic Schooling Approach (Section 6.5.).                                                                                                                           Since the program commenced in 998, there have been 60
                                                                          the indigenous boys who receive scholarships at St Josephs are
                                                                                                                                                                       students who have completed more than one year at St Joseph’s
the key difference is that while a donation is made at the                those who are in financial need, have leadership potential and a
                                                                                                                                                                       college. of those 60 indigenous students:
organisational level in the holistic Schooling Approach, scholarships     genuine interest in finishing year . they are likely to have some
are targeted at an individual level.                                      experience of the issues shown in the table above.                                           – 7 have completed year , many of them going on to
                                                                                                                                                                           tertiary study
there are two main indigenous Scholarship models currently in
                                                                                                                                                                       –  are completing year  in 008
use. the first involves the school providing both education and the
                                                                                                                                                                       –  are enrolled in other year levels
additional support required by the scholarship recipient and the
second involves the school providing education, with additional                                                                                                        – 9 have left the program for reasons including disciplinary issues
support being delivered by another organisation.                                                                                                                           and pursuit of employment
                                                                                                                                                                       – school attendance is 00%.
Scholarships can benefit students from urban, regional and remote
areas, but are commonly granted to students from regional and                                                                                                          St Joseph’s college has established an indigenous capital fund
remote areas, as it is recognised that this group has the greatest                                                                                                     to facilitate funding scholarships for students and in 007
difficultly in accessing quality education.                                                                                                                            commenced funding scholarships for girls at high-performing
                                                                                                                                                                       girls’ boarding schools.
                                                                         ** Attributes must apply to the school that scholarship recipients are attending.
                                                                         > Attributes must apply to both the scholarship design (i.e. student selection and
                                                                           scholarship management and coordination) and to the school that the scholarship
                                                                           recipients are attending.


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                                                                                                                                                        7. Key insights for
                                                                                                                                                        philanthropic investment



7. Conclusion                                                            Although the issues relating to
                                                                         Indigenous education are complex,
                                                                         Philanthropic Investors can play a
                                                                                                                                                        there are a range of interventions suited to
                                                                                                                                                        philanthropic investment that works within a
                                                                                                                                                        School and Student context to improve the delivery
                                                                                                                                                        of education and the education outcomes of
                                                                         positive role in helping to improve                                            indigenous students including both:
     this section summarises the key                                     the education outcomes of                                                      – school-based interventions such as the tailored
     insights of the report.                                             Indigenous students.                                                               curriculum or integrated Schooling Approach and
                                                                                                                                                        – student-based interventions addressing specific
                                                                         In order to improve Indigenous
                                                                                                                                                            areas of need such as intensive Learning Support
                                                                         education outcomes it is necessary                                                 and vocational training and development
                                                                         to take a holistic approach. To do that                                            programs.
                                                                         it is often necessary to address factors                                       it is rare for a single intervention to address the
                                                                         across the Social/Community, Home,                                             range of outcomes or factors that often need to be
                                                                                                                                                        addressed to support change. in many cases a mix
                                                                         School and Student Context that
                                                                                                                                                        of interventions is required to do that.
                                                                         limit the capacity of students to
                                                                                                                                                        the strongest intervention models tend therefore
                                                                         engage in school and to learn.
                                                                                                                                                        to be multi-faceted and to involve the coordination
                                                                                                                                                        of a range of programs to address the issues
                                                                                                                                                        affecting students’ capacity to engage with school
                                                                                                                                                        and learning. the key often lies in providing a
                                                                                                                                                        coordinated response that addresses both the
                                                                                                                                                        learning and other support needs of the
                                                                                                                                                        individual students.
                                                                                                                                                        the implication of this for philanthropic investors is
                                                                                                                                                        that well-focused investments in this area:
                                                                                                                                                        – require a holistic understanding of the local issues
                                                                                                                                                            that need to be addressed in order to achieve
                                                                                                                                                            effective outcomes
                                                                                                                                                        – may involve multiple service providers (and
                                                                                                                                                            as a result tend to require more extensive due
                                                                                                                                                            diligence, more complex funding structures and
                                                                                                                                                            more extensive coordination, monitoring and
                                                                                                                                                            evaluation processes)
                                                                                                                                                        – often require higher levels of overall funding
                                                                                                                                                            in order to make sure that all relevant program
                                                                                                                                                            components are covered and often involve
                                                                                                                                                            larger investments or collaborative
                                                                                                                                                            funding arrangements
                                                                                                                                                        – tend to require higher levels of support where
                                                                                                                                                            interventions are delivered in remote areas due
                                                                                                                                                            to the narrower range of services and service
                                                                                                                                                            providers in those areas and the higher levels of
                                                                                                                                                            disadvantage that tend to exist there
                                                                                                                                                        – need to allow a reasonable timeframe for change
                                                                                                                                                            given the complexity of the factors affecting
                                                                                                                                                            education outcomes




70                                     Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS    7
co n c L u S i o n




                                                             7. final words                                        glossary of terms



– in the case of school-based investments:
     – require the underlying organisational systems
                                                             Philanthropic Investments                              Attendance                                                                     Student presence in school classes (as opposed to enrolment)

       at the school (e.g. school management
       and culture, staff recruitment and training,          can change lives.                                      contributing factor                                                            underlying factors in a student’s social/community, home, school, or own
                                                                                                                                                                                                   (student) context that contribute to their educational outcomes
       curriculum planning and student discipline
       procedures etc.) this is necessary to support
       the delivery of the programs being funded             They can help Indigenous                               culturally inclusive                                                           include, recognise, acknowledge and respect indigenous knowledge base and
                                                                                                                                                                                                   cultural and linguistic background and values
       – the alignment of such systems, as well as the
       organisational structure and staffing of the
       school. it is critical to ensure that such programs
                                                             students to develop the skills,                        culturally relevant curriculum                                                 teaching which acknowledges and respects indigenous knowledge, philosophies
                                                                                                                                                                                                   and values while providing education that will enable full participation in society
       are sustainable, rather than dependent on
       the principal and staff who are present at the
                                                             values, experience and confidence                                                                                                     at large

       school at the time of investment
     – need to take into account taxation structures
                                                             to realise their potential.                            deductible gift recipient (dgr)                                                An entity that is entitled to receive income tax deductible gifts. All dgrs have to
                                                                                                                                                                                                   be endorsed unless they are named specifically in the income tax law. most, but
       that currently limit the capacity of investors to                                                                                                                                           not all philanthropic foundations and trusts can only make donations to entities
       access deductible gift recipient (dgr) based
       tax deductions.
                                                             When Philanthropic Investors                                                                                                          with dgr.

                                                                                                                    due diligence                                                                  the care that a prudent person might be expected to exercise in the examination
                                                             apply strong analysis and due                                                                                                         and evaluation of risks affecting a philanthropic investment


                                                             diligence to make well-focused                         enrolment                                                                      the registration of a student for attendance at a school


                                                             investments, their impact                              exclusion                                                                      the permanent prohibition of a student from attending a school
                                                                                                                                                                                                   (or multiple schools)

                                                             can be profound.                                       grade retention                                                                the continued participation (enrolment) of a student at school from year level to
                                                                                                                                                                                                   year level

                                                                                                                    holistic approach                                                              to meet all aspects of an individual’s needs (material, personal, cultural and
                                                                                                                                                                                                   spiritual) in concert

                                                                                                                    home context                                                                   the home environment in which the student lives and home or parental
                                                                                                                                                                                                   factors that influence or inform the development of the student or their home
                                                                                                                                                                                                   experience including parental status and life experience, parenting, early
                                                                                                                                                                                                   childhood development and parental and family capacity to support
                                                                                                                                                                                                   student learning

                                                                                                                    indigenous Australians                                                         people identifying themselves as Australian Aboriginal or torres Strait islander

       (caption) Caption                                                                                            indigenous consultation                                                        the active discussion with and inclusion of indigenous Australians in the
       to be written                                                                                                                                                                               formulation and implementation of programs and policies that will affect them

                                                                                                                    intervention                                                                   A specific type of involvement in a situation that is designed to alter the existing
                                                                                                                                                                                                   state of affairs

                                                                                                                    Key success factor                                                             An element that is required for the success of an intervention

                                                                                                                    non-school qualification                                                       A qualification that is received from an educational institution (e.g. tAfe or
                                                                                                                                                                                                   university) other than a secondary school either while a student is still at
                                                                                                                                                                                                   secondary school or after they have completed secondary school.

                                                                                                                    outcome                                                                        measure(s) that show the status of an individual against a desired socio-
                                                                                                                                                                                                   economic parameter(s) at a given point in time


7                                                                                Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                              7
g Lo S S A ry o f t e r m S




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and torres Strait islander children. Aeu Briefing paper 007.   for a community Literacy empowerment project. the fred                                              review panel members
(Kronemann 007a)                                               hollows foundation and the centre for Aboriginal economic                                                                                                                          trish Burrows, foundation for young Australians
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                                                                policy research. canberra: Australian national university,
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                                                                into the effectiveness of education and training programs for
ministerial council for education employment training and                                                                                                           Jenny Samms, department of planning and
                                                                indigenous Australians. parliament of the commonwealth of                                                                                                                          dr chris Sarra, indigenous education
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76                                                                                                                                Our Children, Our Future –   A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS   77
Appendicies


Appendix one – factors identified as affecting indigenous student absenteeism07
 Key parameters          positive impact                                                    negative impact                                                      Key parameters                        positive impact                                                                negative impact
Socio-economic factors   income                                                                                                                                 Student-based factors*                 Personal factors
(Social/community        – family is financially stable                                     – family is under financial stress                                  (Student context)                      – Absence of significant emotional and behavioural                             – emotional and behavioural difficulties
context)                                                                                                                                                                                                  difficulties/appropriately managed behaviour
                         health
                         – family and student health is good                                – family/student health is not good                                                                        – positive peer and other role models                                          – Lack positive peer or other role models
                         Community safety/stability                                                                                                                                                    – Strong sense of individual and cultural identity                             – Lack a strong sense of individual and cultural identity
                         – the local community is relatively stable                         – the local community environment is unstable/there is a                                                   – clear/positive life goals and aspirations                                    – Lack clear/positive life goals and aspirations
                                                                                              high level of community dysfunction                                                                      Student attitude towards school
family-based factors     Family situation                                                                                                                                                              – positive experience of and attitude towards school                           – negative experience of or attitude towards school
(home context)           – the student has a stable family/home environment                 – there is family dysfunction/an unstable home environment                                                 – Believe that attending school is likely to lead to positive                  – do not believe that attending school is likely to lead to
                                                                                                                                                                                                          consequences (e.g. getting a better job when they                             positive consequences
                         – the family is not highly mobile                                  – the family is highly mobile/transient
                                                                                                                                                                                                          finish school)
                         Parental status
                                                                                                                                                                                                       Access to resources
                         – parental education – one or both parents have completed          – Limited parental education – the student lacks an educated
                                                                                                                                                                                                       – Access to school equipment and resources                                     – Lack access to school equipment and resources
                            year 0/had a positive experience of school                       family role model
                                                                                                                                                                                                          (e.g. computers and internet access)
                                                                                            – negative parental education experience – one or both
                                                                                                                                                                                                       Student performance
                                                                                              parents had a negative experience of school
                                                                                                                                                                * Student-based factors                – meet basic literacy and numeracy skills                                      – poor student performance, low literacy and
                         – parental employment – one or both parents are employed           – parental unemployment – both parents are unemployed,                are significantly affected                                                                                            numeracy skills
                                                                                              the student lacks an employed family-based role model               across factors in the other
                                                                                                                                                                  areas listed.                        – Able to participate in/keep up with class work                               – find it difficult to participate in/keep up with class
                         Parental attitude to education
                         – positive parental/family attitude to education                   – negative parental/family attitude to education
                         – parents actively encourage attendance at school                  – parents do not actively encourage attendance/give children
                                                                                              autonomy in determining whether or not to attend school           Appendix two – detailed description of School and Student-based change levers
School-based factors     School environment                                                                                                                      Activity Area                         description
(School context)         – positive school environment – school is seen as a safe, caring – School is not seen as a safe caring place, students and
                            place where students and parents feel valued and welcome        parents do not feel valued and welcome                               1. School Context
                         Curriculum                                                                                                                             . Access to school                   – improve indigenous student access to school through:
                         – engaging school curriculum – interesting and relevant          – Lack of interesting and relevant curriculum – curriculum                                                     – investment in the provision of additional schools, school facilities, teaching staff (including indigenous education
                            curriculum linked to student’s immediate practical interests    not linked to student’s immediate practical interests                                                          workers/liaison officers)/equipment to improve the availability of appropriately located and resourced educational
                                                                                                                                                                                                           institutions
                         – inclusion of indigenous studies in curriculum                  – indigenous studies not included in curriculum/limited
                                                                                                                                                                                                         – investment in public/private transport services to allow indigenous students and their families to access existing
                         – references to indigenous language and culture                    incorporation of such studies or references to indigenous
                                                                                                                                                                                                           schools and school support services
                                                                                            language or culture
                                                                                                                                                                                                         – provision of financial support to assist students to access education and learning support services
                         teaching approach                                                                                                                                                               – provision of transition support services to assist students in remote communities to manage the transition to school
                         – teachers skilled in teaching in a cross-cultural and           – teachers not skilled in teaching in a cross-cultural and                                                       outside of their community
                            bilingual situation                                             bilingual situation
                                                                                                                                                                . School/ learning                   – improve school environment and culture to make school a more accessible and welcoming place for indigenous students
                         – Limited cross-cultural misunderstanding                        – Significant cross-cultural misunderstanding                              environment                         and their families through:
                         – empathy for social and cultural issues                         – perceived lack of empathy for social and cultural issues                                                     – incorporation of cultural references in school spaces, class exercises and educational materials
                         – Strong teacher–student relationships – teachers seen           – poor teacher–student relationships                                                                           – investment in the training and employment of indigenous teaching, support and administration staff
                            as being supportive and adopt a mixed teaching and                                                                                                                           – encouragement of indigenous community participation in the school
                            support function                                                                                                                                                             – recognition of cultural events and participation in cultural activities
                         – teachers positively encourage student attendance               – teachers seen to discipline non-attendance rather than                                                     – develop school-based management, operational and disciplinary systems, protocols and tools to encourage appropriate
                            and performance                                                 encourage attendance                                                                                         staff and student behaviour
                         – teachers set reasonable demands on students – set              – teachers demonstrate low expectations of indigenous                                                        – Showcase high-impact schools and curriculum models
                            appropriate academic and behavioural standards                  student capability
                                                                                                                                                                . curriculum                         – improve school curriculum through the development and delivery of a culturally appropriate curriculum that is suited to
                         – discipline system – disciplinary action is based on            – penalty or punishment-based discipline system adopted to                                                     the needs of indigenous students including:
                            restorative justice principles (in which the student            manage late attendance, absenteeism and                                                                      – eSL-based programs and intensive literacy and numeracy-based skill development programs to address existing
                            participates rather than being subject to the disciplinary      behavioural issues                                                                                             language and core skill gaps
                            process) and takes into account the student’s situation                                                                                                                      – behaviour management and personal development programs to address social competency and emotional
                         – System uses a structured but culturally sensitive approach                                                                                                                      development needs
                            to manage late attendance, absenteeism and behavioural                                                                                                                       – cultural and language studies
                            issues                                                                                                                                                                       – school engagement programs to introduce students to the learning environment and encourage school attendance
                         Parental/family/community engagement                                                                                                                                              and participation
                         – high level of parental/community involvement in the            – Low level of parental/community involvement in the                                                           – vocational development programs aimed at exposing students to alternative vocational and life options
                            school/teaching process                                         school/teaching process                                                                                      – vocational and academic education streams
                         – parents kept informed of children’s progress                   – parents not kept informed of student’s progress                                                            – develop school-based curriculum-planning processes, protocols and tools to support annual school-based curriculum
                                                                                                                                                                                                         planning to take into account indigenous (high-need) student learning requirements
                         07
                               Bourke et al. 000, pp.ff; Zubrick et al. 006, pp.ff.                                                                                                              – promote connection between school and post-school education and employment options that align with student goals
                                                                                                                                                                                                         and aspirations

78                                                                                                                           Our Children, Our Future –    A c h i e v i n g i m p r ov e d p r i m A ry A n d S e co n dA ry e d u c At i o n o u tco m e S f o r i n d i g e n o u S St u d e n tS                                              79
AppendicieS




 Activity Area             description
                           – Showcase high-impact schools and curriculum models
                           – Showcase tertiary education providers that provide quality pre- and in-service training for indigenous and non-
                             indigenous teachers
. A. teacher training    – invest in the training and development of indigenous teachers, education workers and liaison officers
       and development     – invest in targeted pre- and in-service training for specialist teaching staff to support the delivery of indigenous
                             education including:
                             – eSL and bilingual teaching training
                             – intensive literacy and numeracy
                             – cultural awareness training
                             – intensive support, relationship management and counselling-based skills training
                           – improve understanding of the importance of establishing a supportive teacher–student relationship
                           – teach teaching staff how to align teaching approaches with indigenous student learning styles/preferences and to tailor
                             teaching strategies to individual student needs
                           – establish professional mentoring or supervision programs to support the development of teacher skills to assist in the
                             development and maintenance of effective student–teacher relationships
                           – invest in principal-based training to build understanding of approaches required to achieve effective learning outcomes
                             for indigenous (high-need) students and to support the implementation of school-based approaches
                           – Showcase and reward highly effective school management and teaching staff
. B. teaching approach   – encourage and support schools and teaching staff to tailor teaching strategies to accommodate indigenous student
                             learning and development requirements
                           – provide pre- and in-service training and teaching tools to assist teaching staff to:
                             – develop class plans that tailor teaching content and style to meet the needs of the specific student group
                             – present the curriculum in a culturally appropriate way
                             – build and maintain warm and supportive teacher-student relationships
.5 parental/family        – improve school and teacher engagement with indigenous parents and families:
     engagement              – encourage parental and family involvement in school activities
                             – establish administration, teaching and reporting processes that take into account cross-cultural issues and encourage
                               engagement between the school and teaching staff and indigenous parents and families
                             – encourage parental and family involvement in curriculum design and delivery
                             – provide opportunities for parents and families to participate in adult education
                             – provide workshops for parents on a range of topics including school curriculum, how to help their children with
                               school, literacy and numeracy and vocational development

 2. Student Context

. Basic material and     – invest in school and non-school-based programs that address students’ basic support needs to improve their capacity to
     personal support        attend and participate effectively in school including:
                             – physical and mental health
                             – material aid
                             – home/family-based support
                             – financial support
                             – computer and internet access for home use

. School engagement      – use early childhood education as a bridge to encourage parental, family and student engagement in formal school-
                             based education
                           – invest in school and non-school-based activities that encourage attendance and attachment to learning and school
. intensive learning     – investment in intensive student learning support programs including:
     support                 – intensive language, literacy and numeracy teaching
                             – eSL-based teaching
                             – one-on-one remedial and extension-based learning support

. vocational             – invest in vocational development programs to increase awareness of, and interest in, vocational/career options
     development and       – Assist students in identifying career preferences and developing and implementing career development plans through
     training                supported career guidance and development programs
                           – provide intensive transition support to assist students to transition from school into further education, vocational
                             training and employment
                           – invest in career pathway programs that attract indigenous students to tertiary education
                           – invest in the training and development of indigenous careers guidance counsellors

80                                                                                                                          Our Children, Our Future –

								
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