04 May 2016

Closing the education gap between city and rural schools

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 Australia is not on track to achieve the more important and meaningful targets as outlined in the ‘Closing the Gap Prime Minister Report 2015’. It is hard to be literate and numeric without attending school. It’s hard to find work without a basic education and it’s hard to live well without a job.

Generally speaking the more remote the school is the more excuses are made for poor attendance. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics figures, two-thirds of city dwellers have completed Year 12, but less than half of those live in regional or remote areas. Subsequently, fewer regional students go on to higher education.
Last year in metropolitan areas only 81% of Indigenous Year 9 students met the national minimum standards for reading. However, in very remote areas just 31% of Indigenous students reached the same minimum standard.

In a recent Grattan Institute Report published in March, Dr Pete Goss and Julie Sonnermann found regional and rural students were disadvantaged and needed extra government support.

Policymakers should act on these findings. Student progress and learning gaps should be put at the centre of education policy. In light of the large spread in achievement, policymakers should give schools better support to target teaching to each child’s needs.

And, given the very large gaps, policy leaders must work harder to improve the progress of disadvantaged students so that every child in every school can achieve their potential,” the report stated.

Federal Education Minister Simon Birmingham said he was committed to giving regional public schools more cash.
Our funding commitment to NSW regional and rural schools is set to increase by $236.5 million or 30% from 2014 to 2017 and will keep growing thereafter.”
There is no doubt that a good school education helps a young person stand on their own two feet as an adult, and the benefits ripple through future generations.

What are your opinions on how we can close the education gap in rural Australia? 

The best part of my job as a Conference Production Manager is to create and manage my own conferences from concept to delivery, identify future conference topics as well as giving me a chance to expand my business card collection. Having a bit of a sweet tooth, you will always find me having lollies on my desk or you will catch me browsing on fashion sites during lunch breaks.

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