NSW Education Overhaul A Significant Step in Right Direction

NSW Education Overhaul A Significant Step in Right Direction

May 30, 2012

The State's peak Aboriginal representative organisation has welcomed the NSW Government's proposed radical overhaul of rural and regional education in a bid to lift results in Aboriginal and other disadvantaged communities.

The Chairman of the New South Wales Aboriginal Land Council, Stephen Ryan, says the plan is a significant step in the right direction in addressing an absence of aspiration in the educational outcomes in many communities.

"We fully support the plans outlined by Premier Barry O'Farrell and Education Minister Adrian Piccoli as part of the ongoing reform of education in NSW," Chairman Ryan said.

"We also fully support Premier O'Farrell's call on the Federal Government to get behind this initiative," he added.

"It's time the Federal Government acknowledged, as Premier O'Farrell has stated, that problems in Aboriginal communities are not just about Northern Australia but exist in the larger States such as NSW.

"This has been a constant theme of our public statements for years but NSW is continually ignored by the Federal Government when it comes to equity in funding for infrastructure and services in our communities."

Mr Ryan said Premier O'Farrell's public candour in announcing the education overhaul should also be commended.

"The Premier has declared publicly he's ashamed as a citizen, and determined as Premier, to do something about the poor academic results among Aboriginal students which have shown little improvement in the past ten years.

"He came to office committed to find new ways of doing business in Aboriginal Affairs.

"This new policy is further evidence of his commitment to doing so."

Mr Ryan said he's conscious the Government was committed to generational change in educational outcomes and that this deserved the full support of all Aboriginal parents in NSW.