$30 million continues investment for remote NT students

Release Date: 
16 June 2020
Media release

Joint Media Release
The Hon Ken Wyatt AM, MP
The Hon Selena Uibo

The Australian Government will invest $30 million to continue a joint initiative with the Northern Territory Government to address educational disparity in remote and very remote students.

The Children and Schooling Implementation Plan (CSIP) brings together Commonwealth and Territory investment to work towards achieving COAG Education Council targets of halving the gap in literacy and numeracy achievement, halving the gap in Year 12 attainment and improving Aboriginal school attendance.

The Australian Government’s investment is administrated by the NT and targets resources at schools and communities that need additional help to support Territory children. The aim is to improve student readiness for school, attendance, engagement and academic achievement.

Minister for Indigenous Australians, the Hon Ken Wyatt AM, MP, said the $30 million investment is part of the Australian Government’s total commitment to the NT of $134.2 million over four years.

“The Children and Schooling Implementation Plan has reshaped the way that we support Indigenous students in the NT,” Minister Wyatt said.

“Aboriginal students in remote and very remote communities often have limited access to many of the services and infrastructure that supports their education.

“This is being addressed by linking funding to demonstrated outcomes against agreed milestones.

“All of the targets agreed under the Plan help ensure that Indigenous children have the skills they need to succeed at school, are supported throughout their time at school, and are equipped to take up employment, further training or higher education.”

Northern Territory Minister for Education and Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, The Hon Selena Uibo, MLA, said the CSIP was a great example of the two levels of government working together to help close the educational gap for remote and very remote students.

“I welcome this investment from the Commonwealth in our Aboriginal students, as we work towards our mutual aim of improving educational outcomes for all of our Territory kids,” Minister Uibo said.

“This funding, combined with our Territory Government’s record investment in education, is starting to yield results with improvements in this year’s NAPLAN results in years 3, 7 and 9 literacy and years 3, 5 and 9 numeracy.

“Critically, we have been able to expand our key early childhood program Families as First Teachers to 53 communities by the end of 2020.

“This program has helped more than 2000 Territory students and their families engage with schooling from the critical early years, establishing good attendance habits and greatly enhancing the chances of future success at school and into adulthood.”

Through CSIP, 11 Commonwealth funded case workers are helping families engage with schooling and 214 Aboriginal assistant teachers have had the opportunity to enhance their skills through accredited training.

The funding is also delivering practical measures such as improvements to teacher housing, which helps attract and retain skilled and motivated teachers.

As part of the NT Government’s Local Decision Making policy, 58 per cent of the NT’s remote and very remote communities have also established local decision making units to bring a whole-of-community approach to boosting school attendance.

The 2018-21 Children and Schooling Implementation Plan is part of the National Partnership on Northern Territory Remote Aboriginal Investment (NTRAI).