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Recognition of Aboriginal Culture and Learning

The Recognition of Aboriginal Culture and Learning project is committed to fulfilling the learning entitlement of Aboriginal students and is a core component of Thrive.

As highlighted in the Alice Springs (Mparntwe) Education Declaration and the recent Shergold review into senior secondary pathways, Aboriginal students should be able to draw on their cultural knowledge and competency to demonstrate their learning, in language, or on Country.  

To ensure that SACE becomes a culturally responsive qualification that provides opportunities for Aboriginal students to utilise their living history, languages and cultures as an integral part of their SACE, three recommendations were endorsed in-principle by the Board.  

These recommendations were: 

  • Recognition of Aboriginal students’ cultural knowledge and learning 
  • Aboriginal students to provide evidence of learning in language 
  • Recognition of the authority of Aboriginal Language and Culture custodians to teach and assess Aboriginal languages and cultures. 

What’s next?

In the first phase of the project, how we recognise Aboriginal cultural knowledge and learning for SACE credit will be explored and tested. This will include:  

  • Community led learning - students will have their cultural knowledge recognised as part of their secondary education, it will be recognised in its own right, and not through its ability to be applied through a mainstream subject.  
  • Self-directed cultural learning - students can explore their Aboriginal culture, identity and/or interests in a manner of their own choosing. What they learn through these activities can be recognised as equally important as any other type of learning that is recognised by SACE.  
  • Recognition of the authority to teach and assess Aboriginal cultural learning - the SACE Board recognises of the role of Cultural Authorities in assessing Aboriginal Cultural knowledge and learning and are developing policies to support implementation.  

The next phase of the project will focus on students learning in language, so that students will be able to submit work in an Australian language of their choice.