Articles on Indigenous education

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In some Aboriginal communities, over 50% of adults say they do not have the literacy they need for everyday tasks. Literacy for Life Foundation/Adam Sharman

To lift literacy levels among Indigenous children, their parents’ literacy skills must be improved first

The children who are least likely to attend school regularly – and do well – grow up in households where the adults themselves have very poor literacy skills.
One way teachers can respect culture is by embedding it into ‘mainstream’ subjects. Tracey Nearmy/AAP

Back to school – understanding challenges faced by Indigenous children

Teachers – get to really know your kids, their families, their community and its history, and what’s going on at home. While school policies are important, relationships are the real keys to success.
AAP/Neda Vanovac

Equality in education – what does that mean?

Australia’s appalling record of equity in education has once again been confirmed in the latest Closing the Gap report. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced the report’s dismal findings present an…
Graduates of a 2015 Tertiary Entry Program, which paves the way into university courses, with lead author and CQUniversity’s Pro Vice-Chancellor of Indigenous Engagement, Bronwyn Fredericks (fourth from left) and Provost Hilary Winchester (far right). Peter Lawrence/CQUniNewsPICs

Laying pathways for greater success in education for Indigenous Australians

If we're serious about closing the gap in Indigenous education, our new research shows the value of building better bridges into universities and vocational education.
Preschool attendance has been shown to improve literacy and numeracy for Indigenous children. AAP/Neda Vanovac

Early childhood education is key to closing the gaps

The Closing the Gap report shows a mix of successes and failures, but early childhood education holds the key to significant progress.
No improvements have been made to Indigenous higher education participation or completion despite a major review. from www.shutterstock.com.au

Nothing has changed since Indigenous higher ed review

Three years after the Review of Higher Education Access and Outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People which aimed to increase university attendance for Indigenous Australians, not much has changed.
Measures to close the gap in Indigenous education outcomes aren’t working. AAP

Closing the Gap in education report card: needs improvement

This year’s update on Closing the Gap presents a picture similar to 2014 in education - there is much work still to be done to improve educational outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students…
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott with kindergarden kids at Yirrkala in the Northern Territory. Indigenous and non-Indigenous students in the NT have the nation’s lowest retention rate, so it’s time to try more creative ways to fix that. AAP Image/Tracey Nearmy

Keeping Indigenous teens in school by reinventing the lessons

Tony Abbott is spending this week in North-East Arnhem Land, part of his long-held hope “to be not just the Prime Minister but the Prime Minister for Aboriginal Affairs”. We asked our experts: what stories…
Leader of the pack: Djalu Gurruwiwi of the Galpu clan leads younger performers at the 2013 Garma Festival in Arnhem Land. AAP Image/Youthu Yindi Foundation

Listen to your elders: inviting Aboriginal parents back to school

Tony Abbott is spending this week in North East Arnhem Land, part of his long-held hope “to be not just the Prime Minister but the Prime Minister for Aboriginal Affairs”. We asked our experts: what stories…
Tony Abbott keeps appointing businessmen like Andrew Forrest, who have limited expertise in analysing evidence and developing social policy, to advise the government. AAP/Nikki Short

Forrest report ignores what works and why in Indigenous policy

The Creating Parity report on Indigenous employment and welfare, released last week by mining magnate Andrew Forrest, is in much the same vein as Tony Shepherd’s recent Commission of Audit. Forrest and…
No one-size-fits-all approach will solve Indigenous literacy problems. AAP

Indigenous literacy needs more than ‘sounding out’ words

Closing the gap in Indigenous literacy is a problem without a simple solution. But it can be done. As I’ve argued previously, we need to give up the search for a one-size-fits-all approach and adopt a…
With mentoring and industry traineeships, young Indigenous people are making their way into steady employment. WorkingStart!

Finding that first job is hard, and cultural hurdles make it extra hard

A few years ago in a quiet corner of Sydney’s Redfern Community Centre, I interviewed a young Aboriginal man, Scott, about his life for a research project. Like many of his contemporaries he grew up in…
Are Australian policymakers trapped in a monolingual mindset? Katie Tegtmeyer

Muting Indigenous language support only widens the gap

Indigenous languages are under attack yet again. The federal budget, released on May 13, includes a substantial reduction of A$9.5 million over four years for the Indigenous Languages Support Programme…
Ethnic and Indigenous students report racism in Aussie schools, but who are the perpetrators? Shutterstock

Indigenous students skipping school to avoid bullying and racism

High-profile cases of racial discrimination on the sporting field and on public transport capture the media’s attention, but we hear less about racism in our schools. One survey of secondary students across…

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