The paper "Aboriginal Education" is a wonderful example of a literature review on education. Aboriginal education simply refers to the education offered to Indigenous people in Australia. It can be offered in mainstream schools or in special settings as demonstrated in research findings (Cabello and Pond, 2004; Harrison, 2011). In whichever situation the education is offered, it must be in line with the existing government policies and practices on education and training. In view of this, the current report addresses the strategies that can be used in schools to meet the main goal of the NSW DET Aboriginal Education and Training Policy (2008) as well as the extent to which the NSW DET Anti-racism policy statement (2005) and NSW DET Racism – No way!
Guide (2000) can assist in meeting the main goal of the said policy. Finally, the report concludes by summing up the main issues. Strategies for meeting the main goal of the NSW DET Aboriginal Education and Training Policy (2008) According to reports by Vale (2008, p34), the main goal of the NSW DET Aboriginal Education and Training Policy (2008) is to “ educate Aboriginal students and their communities using culturally appropriate teaching strategies” .
The goal further aims at closing the gap between the educational outcomes of Aboriginal students and non-Aboriginal students. In order to achieve this, the strategies enumerated hereunder can be attempted. Aboriginal Parents and the Community In order to make meaningful strides in improving the education of Aboriginal students, it is proposed that parents and communities of these children get actively involved in their education as early as possible. In fact, Carbines et al (2007, p61) underscore the importance of parental involvement in their children’ s schooling during the formative years.
In this view, parents are encouraged to act as “ teachers” both at home and in school in order to promote their children’ s ‘ cognitive, language, social and motor development’ . This is strongly supported by Harrison (2008, p112) who believes that “ parents’ involvement leaves a much longer-lasting impact on their children’ s behavior compared to the school environment” . In line with this realization, therefore, parents and communities from which Aboriginal students hail should participate in numerous literacy and numeracy support services organized for them to hone their skills in becoming better tutors and mentors for their children. Language of Instruction It is in my view that most individuals use their Native language to identify themselves.
This makes them very proud and gives them a sense of belonging. It thus becomes unreasonable to disconnect an individual from this ‘ comfort zone’ after enrolling in school. In the arguments of Henderson and Nash (2003, p108), education systems offer the best opportunities for individuals to continue learning their own languages. This argument particularly applies to Aboriginal people in NSW who boast of a rich range of languages unique only to them.
The uniqueness of these languages resides in the fact that they are not spoken anywhere else in the world as explained by Henderson and Nash (2003, p34). Thus allowing Aboriginal children to bring onboard their Native languages to school develops in them a very strong sense of identity and self-esteem. The foregoing can be made possible by insisting on the use of Aboriginal English which is considered to be ‘ the home language of many school-going Aboriginal children’ (Henderson and Nash).
The starting point will be to engage the learners more in talking and listening activities using their Aboriginal ‘ home language’ to improve on it. Similarly, it will be prudent to train teachers and other stakeholders on the use of Aboriginal English to make them better suited to their tasks. In the arguments of Nakata (2007, p11), a revision of the ‘ restrictive’ government policies and practices on Aboriginal education and training will go a long way in enhancing the use of Aboriginal English as a medium of instruction.
In line with this, parents and teachers will need to work tirelessly on writing and language skills of those children beginning to attend school in order to make any meaningful academic progress a reality.
Cabello, V & Pond, K. (2004). The Report of the Review of Aboriginal Education. Freeing the
Spirit: Dreaming an Equal Future. New South Wales Aboriginal Education Consultative Group (AECG) Incorporated and New South Wales Department of Education and Training
Carbines, R., Wyatt, T., & Robb, L. (2007). Evaluation of the Mathematics in Indigenous
Contexts Project. A report prepared for the Office of the NSW Board of Studies, Erebus International
Connell, R. (2009). Good teachers on dangerous ground: Towards a new view of teacher quality
and professionalism. Critical Studies in Education, 50(13), 13-229.
Deane, W. (2010). Racism. No way! A guide for Australian schools. NSW Department of
Education and Training
Green, B. (2010). Rethinking the representation problem in the curriculum. Journal of Curriculum
Studies, 42 (4), 451–469.
Harrison, N. (2008). Teaching and learning in Indigenous education. Melbourne: Oxford
Harrison, N. (2011). Teaching and learning in Aboriginal education. (2nd ed.) Oxford University
Henderson, J & Nash, D. (2003). Aboriginal Languages K–10 Syllabus. Board of Studies NSW
Nakata, M. (2007). Disciplining the savages: savaging the disciplines. Canberra: Aboriginal
Vale, C. (2008). Aboriginal Education and Training Policy. An introductory Guide. NSW
Department of Education & Training