Course captures passion for indigenous education

Thursday, 10 July 2008

A groundbreaking pilot course at Challenger TAFE's Rockingham campus promises to boost the number of indigenous teacher assistants and improve education outcomes.

The Wider Opportunities for Work (WOW) Indigenous Teacher Assistant course was successfully trialled in Semester I, with students from the course receiving their certificates at a recent function.

The course was run through the College’s WA Centre for Leadership, Community & Cultural Development and involved the College’s support service for aboriginal students, Kadadjiny Mia.

Kadadjiny Mia Manager, Noelene Mantellato, said that all participants would be progressing to the next level of teacher assistant studies.

“The course was extremely successful in terms of engaging people who are passionate about aboriginal education,” she said.

“All the students successfully completed the course, which has increased their self-esteem and confidence, and they now all plan to undertake the Certificate III – Indigenous Teacher Assistant.”

Mark Bonshore, Manager of Aboriginal Education in the Kwinana, Rockingham and Peel districts, was delighted with the initial run of the course and said plans to expand it would yield positive outcomes for indigenous education and training.

“Now that this course has been successfully trialled through Challenger TAFE, we would anticipate extending it to the wider community,” he said.

“Many of the course participants have commenced working as teacher assistants or Aboriginal Islander Education Officers, so we have been able to bridge the gap between training and meaningful employment.”

The students were unanimous in their praise for the course, saying that they had learnt basic skills to set them on a vital career path and were looking forward to the next phase of learning.

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