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Introduction - Indigenous Policies in Australia

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Society and history have a great impact on the public policy, the people living in a society highly influence the policies developed for themselves. The policies are planned and developed for the people living in the society in order to achieve development and growth it is important that the policies made are accepted by the society. This essay is in context to the various policies developed in favor of the public or society in Australia. The policies are implemented for the growth and development of the society but also have some negative effect on the well-being of the public. Furthermore, the essay will discuss various public policies and their impact on the politics, Society and culture within Australia.

PART A – Three types of Indigenous policies in Australia

Indigenous Policies are very important for the growth and development of the young children which leads to the development of the society as well as the whole country. These policies are developed to spread awareness regarding education among the people or community. There are three themes in the Australian indigenous education policies, one of the major theme which is very important is the need for schools to form partnerships for decision making with the indigenous communities. The first objective of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education Policy gives clear direction for indigenous engagement in education decision making(Heyeres and, 2018).

  • The Major objective 1 – Engagement of Aboriginal and Torres Trait Islander People in Educational Decision Making.
  • The Major objective 2 – Equality of Access to various Education services.
  • The Major Objective 3 – Equity of Educational Engagement
  • The Major objective 4 – Appropriate and Equitable Educational Results.

The Ministerial council of Education, Employment, Training and Youth affairs policy Australia established in 2005 to 2008 within the Indigenous Education also gives a logical concept for Indigenous education consisting partnership in the decision making process. It states five policies for Indigenous education -

  1. Early childhood education
  2. School and Community educational partnerships
  3. School leadership

All the three policies within Indigenous education focus on the development of the society and its people through education. Earlier the society was not supporting educational development in the society, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were not interested in educational development. It was due to the lack of schools in rural areas and the low standard of living or financial issues. Then islander people were financially weak and were not able to afford the education expenses. The establishment and implementation of the indigenous policies such as Early childhood education, School and Community educational partnership and School leadership supported the Islander people to take interest in Educational development, the policies provided financial support, development of schools in the rural areas and communities so that the children in those areas get easy access to education. These policies contributed in the growth and development o the society and its people by providing access to education, Australian political bodies or government played an important role in the establishment o the Indigenous polices in the country they supported the development of schools in rural areas, the society accepted this development as they got aware of the importance of education and the intention of the policies which is to achieve growth and development of the society.

Part B – Excerpt from Indigenous Policies

There are three main policies of Indigenous education which are as mentioned below -

  1. Early childhood Education Policy – The first policy in indigenous policy is the Early childhood education policy. This policy focus on providing indigenous education to the children of the society, this was a major policy which help local people to understand the need and importance of education the development and growth of the society and its people. Australia has inclusive and fair activities that focus equality, high completion and quality for education of the children. The Early education and care has experienced a rush of policy attention in past years at the international and national level(Stavenhagen,2015). The Early childhood education in Australia is nor compulsory but it is provided to the children by various types of settings such as pre-schools and childcare centres. The Early education policy contributed in the growth of the society or community by offering access to education for the children in early childhood. This helped in the social and culture development of the community, the children are getting information about the society and culture with the help of childhood education. It is important for the people to understand need and importance of education from the establishment of early childhood education through pre-schools or kindergarten. The children develop many skills and knowledge at early childhood with the help of this respective policy. This contribute in the growth and development of the society and its people by spreading awareness among the people regarding education and building interest for education from an early age in children(Bishop and, 2014).
  2. School and Community educational partnerships – The other policy is regarding partnership between school and community to promote and provide education to the people in the society or community. This policy enabled the relation between the schools and community to offer various education programs in Australian societies. The people started supporting schools and educational centres with implementation of the partnership policy. When schools and community bodies operate together for supporting learning, every individual gets benefits. This partnership between schools and community supports, strengthen and transform individual partners which result in the improvement of educational program quality, efficient utilization of resources and effective setting of objectives and goals. Firstly education and learning partnerships helps in supporting student outcome. The after school programs developed by these partnerships build strong relationship between teachers and students which helps in improving students homework completion, efforts, initiative and positive behaviour. The partnership between schools and community not only supports the students directly but also have many other benefits for the students and their families. These benefits are as described below -
  • It helps in providing continuity of services everyday across a year, it promotes improvement in attendance and easing school transitions in after school programs.
  • Facilitating access to various opportunities of learning and developmental supports, it provides opportunities for teachers and students similarly in order to experiment with new approaches to learning and teaching.
  • It helps in facilitating the sharing of information about specific students for supporting individual learning.
  • Providing family members with various entry points within the school days in order to support their students learning(Wilson,2014).

This policy encouraged the political parties or bodies to support partnership between schools and community as people are in favour of this concept or idea. Hence, political support was achieved by this policy, along with political support various social involvement was observed in the implementation of the partnerships. The people started motivating others for developing the after school programs for the students which played a major role in the growth of this policy. Cultural activities were also involved in the after school learning programs which helped in development of cultural values and traditions among the students.

  1. School leadership – This is another important and effective policy developed in Australia to develop and promote education or learning among the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. This policy focus on developing leadership quality among the students which can help them to lead an education center or school as a teacher or principle. The school leadership programs helps the student to understand leadership, functions and roles of a leader. This policy's concern was to encourage children or people for leading the educational bodies effectively so that the students can grow and develop their knowledge by attaining education. The political, social and cultural area of communities in Australia supported this policy to grow or expand the educational bodies in the society and community to ease the access of learning for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people(McCarty and Lee,2014).


The report concluded that education is very important for each and every society and its people. The Australian government bodies developed various polices to promote education among the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It is important to promote education and learning among the society for the growth and development as concluded in this essay. The report described the various policies developed by Australian legal bodies for promoting education have been discussed in the essay such as Early childhood Education Policy, School and Community educational partnerships, School leadership which played a major role in educational development within Australia. The essay also described various areas these policies address and the impact of the policies on various areas such political, social and cultural area of a community or society.


Books and Journals

  • McCarty, T. and Lee, T., 2014. Critical culturally sustaining/revitalizing pedagogy and Indigenous education sovereignty. Harvard Educational Review, 84(1), pp.101-124.
  • Wilson, B., 2014. A share in the future: Review of Indigenous education in the Northern Territory. Education Business.
  • Bishop, R., Berryman, M. and Wearmouth, J., 2014. Te Kotahitanga: Towards effective education reform for indigenous and other minoritised students. Wellington: NZCER Press.
  • Stavenhagen, R., 2015. Indigenous Peoples' Rights to Education. European Journal of education, 50(3), pp.254-257.
  • Heyeres, M., McCalman, J., Langham, E., Bainbridge, R., Redman-MacLaren, M., Britton, A., Rutherford, K. and Tsey, K., 2018. Strengthening the Capacity of Education Staff to Support the Wellbeing of Indigenous Students in Boarding Schools: A Participatory Action Research Study. The Australian Journal of Indigenous Education, pp.1-14.
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