St Edmund’s College is proud of the diversity of our student population and we aim to maximise the teaching and learning opportunities for each boy. Our student population is enriched by the presence of our students with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent.
We encourage and inspire academic achievement, social and emotional development and cultural awareness of these students while validating the unique cultural identity of each boy. To quote the Edmund Rice Education Australia (EREA) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education Policy: EREA stands in solidarity with Indigenous peoples of Australia. Through collaborative partnerships that are mutually enriching, EREA will provide an inclusive and welcoming environment and offer a quality and culturally appropriate education for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people. EREA will also further reconciliation by deepening an understanding and appreciation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives throughout the curriculum in EREA schools.
St Edmund’s College provides students of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent with a quality education that is founded in the values of Edmund Rice, is sensitive to the heritage of these students, teaches leadership skills and enables students to contribute in a culturally diverse world. We have 33 students enrolled who are of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent. These students range from Years 4 to 12. The College is very proud to have four boys who will complete their secondary schooling with the award of a Year 12 Certificate in 2017.
We have a dedicated position of Indigenous Education Coordinator who’s role is to encourage and inspire academic achievement, social and emotional development and cultural awareness of our students of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent. To achieve this our Indigenous Education Coordinator and the College targets the goals of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education Policy (AEP). The main goals that are targeted include:
- improving educational access for Indigenous children and young people,
- improving educational achievement of Indigenous students,
- developing links with Indigenous families and communities to increase their participation in education decision making,
- developing the knowledge and understanding of staff, students and school communities about Indigenous Australia,
- providing opportunities for all Indigenous students to explore their collective and individual cultural links.
Despite the improvements in the national education outcomes for Indigenous students over the past decade the gaps persist between Indigenous and non-indigenous student outcomes across the education and training sector. We believe that closing those gaps is possible and we have a responsibility to do so. Guided by this responsibility, we focus on implementing strategies to improve Indigenous student learning outcomes.
There is a need to promote the educational achievement of Indigenous students within the College and across its broader community. We give equal focus to the pathways available for students, both the academic and the Vocational Education and Training pathways.
We wish to further a deeper involvement of Indigenous parents/carers, and our Indigenous communities in the College, by presenting both traditional and contemporary cultural perspectives and encouraging participation. In the spirit of Reconciliation our community seeks to build and strengthen our relationship with Indigenous Australians by identifying and addressing those practices which currently hinder the enrolment and retention of Indigenous students in our schools.