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Working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

Education

Education is key to increasing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander pathways to success. It’s the foundation that can lead to increased wellbeing across all other aspects of life.

The National Indigenous Australians Agency provides expert policy leadership and advice on issues, initiatives and programs with the aim of improving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander education outcomes. We influence other areas of Government to ensure mainstream funding efforts benefit Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students, particularly in the areas of early childhood education, school education, student engagement, training, higher education access and outcomes, and building teacher capacity.

Great improvements have been made, including:

  • More Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are now attaining a Year 12 or equivalent qualification.
  • More Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students are staying in school longer, increasing the chances of successfully completing Year 12.
  • More Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are also studying higher level vocational education and training (VET) courses.
  • More Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are going to university.
  • There is virtually no gap in employment outcomes between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous Australians who hold a bachelor’s degree.

There is still more work to do to deliver equitable education outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Areas  or further development include:

  • Increasing attendance and school engagement.
  • Increasing literacy and numeracy attainment, particularly in remote areas.
  • Improving teachers’ ability to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students and to teach all students about the depth, wealth and diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures.
  • Improving university and VET completion rates.

The Australian Government is working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, state and territory governments, education authorities and schools to strive for the best outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students. Our investment includes record levels of recurrent schools funding through the Quality Schools package. This needs-based funding model includes a loading specifically for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students.

Through the Children and Schooling Program (Outcome 2.2) of the Indigenous Advancement Strategy (IAS) the Agency also provides over $220 million each year in targeted complementary funding to improve Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander educational outcomes.

 
 

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