26 September 2023

Schools celebrate Indigenous literacy

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The Department of Education has announced that educational outcomes had been celebrated across the State on Indigenous Literacy Day (1 September), as schools participated in the theme Celebrating Stories and Language.

Minister for Education, Sarah Mitchell said the annual celebration featured Aboriginal languages, stories and culture as a reminder of the importance of a connection to language, heritage and literacy for Aboriginal communities.

Ms Mitchell said the event helped lift Aboriginal educational outcomes and students to achieve their full potential through a number of programs focused on language and culture.

“We know that when Aboriginal students are connected to their language and culture and feel supported by their community, their educational outcomes improve,” she said.

Ms Mitchell said initiatives included the Connected Communities strategy, Ninganah No More and the Aboriginal Early Childhood Education strategy.

“These programs are centred around a stronger connection to country, community, language and culture, and all share the same objective: to ensure every Aboriginal child in NSW has access to a top-quality education and early childhood education,” she said.

Ms Mitchell said the stronger connection had helped lift results in reading for many Year 3 Aboriginal students over the past decade, with 25.3 per cent placed in the top two NAPLAN bands in 2019.

She said a study by the Centre for Education Statistics and Evaluation had found that Aboriginal students in Year 10 who “feel good about their culture” while at school were around 22 per cent more likely to aspire to get their HSC.

“Recent studies reiterate that cultural recognition is a critical driver in Aboriginal student aspiration at school, and increases the likelihood that their educational journey will be enriched,” Ms Mitchell said.

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