Aboriginal Voices: Building Momentum Towards Research Informed Change

A seminar with Dr Kevin Lowe, Macquarie University.

All of those who work in Aboriginal education have developed an understanding of the challenges involved in transforming the embedded inequalities that have structurally and pedagogically affected the education of these students.  They are cognisant of the complexity and multi-dimensional nature of intergenerational educational underachievement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students.

The presentation will outline the development of The Aboriginal Voices project, a holistic, whole school and community focussed, long-term project that aims to fundamentally change the structures and practices that have for too long inhibited Aboriginal student, parent and community engagement and educational success for Aboriginal students. The research that has informed the thinking behind the program and guided the whole-of-system professional learning model used to underpin the development of the Aboriginal Voices program will be discussed. In particular the findings from a multi-site case study that explores the overall educational, social and cultural experiences of Aboriginal students in NSW high schools, and how these impact on student educational success will be drawn together. It will also report preliminary findings from a 10-part systematic review of Aboriginal education, the establishment of a pedagogic framework that supports Aboriginal learning outcomes and the key elements of a highly innovative Aboriginal students’ voice project.