DURING THE PAST 10 YEARS MUCH HAS BEEN ACHIEVED IN PURSUING THE VISION OF THE CATHY FREEMAN FOUNDATION.
From strong community partnerships to unprecedented levels of Year 12 attainment, we are committed to sharing with you all of the latest highlights and positive stories from our partner communities.
YEAR 12 GRADUATION
In 2017, 16 students graduated from Year 12 across all four partner communities, an increase of 25% from 2016. This includes eight young women from Xavier Catholic College in Wurrumiyanga, each of whom graduated with their Northern Territory Certificate of Education and Training (NTCET). One further student graduated Year 12 from The Cathedral School in Townsville with a Cathy Freeman Foundation supported scholarship through program partners Australian Indigenous Education Foundation (AIEF).
Bwgcolman Community School was proud to achieve 100% QCE attainment as well as 100% post-secondary outcomes (full time employment).
INCREASING SCHOOL ATTENDANCE
Term One of 2017 launched the Give Me Five program in Woorabinda, which engages low attending students and challenges them to attend school five days more than they did the previous term. The program is supported by the Foundation’s Program Coordinators and school staff and early outcomes of this program are positive.
Term One of 2017 launched ‘Back to School’ community events as a pilot in both Wurrumiyanga and Galiwin’ku to encourage families back to community for the first day of school. The march also encourages and rewards students for attending the first day of school and facilitates positive school and community relationships. These events were so successful in Term One, they continued to run on the first day of each term in the Northern Territory and in 2018 the program expanded to Palm Island and Woorabinda with great community support.
MOST SIGNIFICANT CHANGE STORY
Each quarter the Cathy Freeman Foundation Programs Team collate stories of interest and success that monitor and evaluate the Foundation’s programs and show the positive impact the programs are having on the lives of the students and families we work with.
To show how your support is helping more Indigenous kids succeed in school, we’d like to share these stories with you here.
SHEPHERDSON COLLEGE, GALIWIN'KU, TERM 4 2017
“My name is Yasmin and I’m a teacher at Shepherdson College. I teach Grade 4/5/6. One of the students in my class has really been inspired to improve their attendance and their focus in class because of the potential opportunity to go on a Cathy Freeman Foundation Horizons Camp. Gabi* is a year four student and she is incredibly bright, she is probably the top student in my class, but she only comes to school about 50% of the time. In Term Three, three girls from my class were selected to go on a Horizons camp to Darwin. They were Gabi’s best friends and she expected to go on camp with them. I think it was a shock to her when she was not chosen to attend. I met with her and her mother and explained that she had not earned a place on the camp when she was not attending school regularly.
Since then, Gabi has been to school almost every day, her mother or father comes with her every day and sits with her in class to make sure that she doesn’t run away after lunch time. I have seen such an improvement in her learning because she is now attending school regularly. Also, because she is now having success at school, you can see that she is a lot happier and more driven. Because she is coming to school consistently now, she is able to make improvements and I have been able to move her up.
This has given her the motivation that she needed to keep coming to school.
Gabi checks in with me all the time and asks “Cathy Freeman camp next year?”. I have told her that if she keeps up her attendance and focus then she will be on top of the list to go.