Warren Mundine outlines 10 recommendations to improve Indigenous education outcomes

Dec 14
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 Chairman of the Prime Minister’s Indigenous Advisory Council Warren Mundine made a keynote address at the ‘Indigenous Education & Transitions’ conference on the 25th November in Sydney. Mr Mundine opened his address by comparing the journey for improving outcomes for Indigenous students as clearing a forest; it begins by clearing the first tree.

Mr Mundine outlined 10 recommendations, a blueprint for improving Indigenous education outcomes:

  1. Students need to attend school. The first step in improving outcomes depends on students being present at school. It begins with the first tree.
  2. Penalties for state government for truancy of students. Enforcing government to be held accountable for Indigenous students not attending school.
  3. Better resourcing for remote primary schools. Setting a solid foundation in primary schools paves the way for future achievement.
  4. Family benefits changed to ‘School attendance benefits.’ Parents should be awarded benefits based on their child’s school attendance.
  5. School’s fit for purpose.  Schools need to be capable of teaching Indigenous students with the right resources readily available.
  6. Schools need to be assigned with culturally capable teachers. Teacher’s need to have a good understanding of aboriginal culture.
  7. Foster a partner approach. Universities and schools need to adopt a partner approach with remote communities to encourage sustainable relationships.
  8. Invest in communication infrastructure in remote Communities. If remote Communities have the access to improved communication their learning capabilities are enhanced.
  9. Indigenous studies made compulsory across Australian curriculum. Indigenous studies should be taught at all schools.
  10. Indigenous students should be taught in their traditional language. It is easier for Indigenous students to learn when being taught in their traditional language.

Speakers all agreed that there is no blanket approach to closing the gap of disadvantage for Indigenous students. Leadership, mentoring and shared decision making were all highlighted as key themes in successfully improving the outcomes for students. 

photo credit: electricnerve via photopin cc

Submitted by Matthew Lathlean

Matthew Lathlean

Matt Lathlean is a Conference Producer with Criterion Conferences. He is passionate about finding solutions through sharing information in an innovative and engaging way and bringing people together who share similar goals. His interests include getting lost in foreign destinations, meeting new people and all things music related.

Fun fact about Matt – He is terrified of heights.

One thought on “Warren Mundine outlines 10 recommendations to improve Indigenous education outcomes

  1. If Mr Mundine was an aborigine he would soon realise that it is not the aboriginal way to “clear the forest” in the way he suggests. We don’t destroy our environment. He would soon realise that it is not an aboriginal problem if he would continue to use this analogy. It’s does not begin with “clearing” the first tree. It begins by lighting a flame. Let me explain.
    Firstly, and looking at this with aboriginal eyes and standing on the outside looking in, if the forest floor is dark and gloomy it’s because the canopy at the top has closed over so no light can penetrate down to it. The sun also holds vitamins and minerals that we all need. No sunlight no life. No light equals no insects, no insects equal no birds, no birds equal no lizards and snakes, no lizards and snakes equals no larger birds on the ground or predators in the sky, etc etc.
    Secondly fire would be used to rectify this situation and is a very effective tool as it opens the canopy and causes new growth. But that is not its aim! Its aim is to cear the forest floor and the rest is a natural occurance and the nature of fire. The trees attract the flame for its own purpose and the canopy opens up letting the much needed sunlight in to penetrate to the forest floor. Some insects need the heat from the fire to hatch and when this happens birds flock to the area along with animals who are attracted by them and ground animals like the kangaroo and wombats which feast on pasture from new growth.
    Thirdly it burns up and reduces those hiding places that the predators use and makes it more competitive until there are only a few, leaving the stronger ones to roam to cull the weak and sick. In the end…equality, safety and fairness for all!
    Mr Mundine is dead set on penalising our mob and others. How does this empower our poeple?
    The university degree in education is the thing that needs to change bringing it into the 22nd century. All kids are learning differently now and schools are not catering to it fully to its own detriment. Kids get bored easily without that technology in their hands using it in the way it is meant and to its maximum and then desperately waiting for the next updated versions.
    I dunno! How is he an expert on education? Is he qualified to make such recommendations? You can’t do this from knowledge read out of a book. To me it is evident that everything he has said has been said before and by someone else.
    Open the canopy and let the goodness of the sunlight shine on us all for an inclusive future in this, our country.

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