Tuesday, September 15, 2009

One-way street for two-way NT bi-lingual programs

For those interested in the future of bi-lingual education in Northern Territory schools, try to catch up with last night's Four Corners program "Going Back to Lajamnau" and Bob Gosford's analysis at Crikey.

Gosford on meetings with members of the Yirrkala commmunity. (You need to be a subscriber or try a free trial to read the full article):

Crikey understands that Barnes (new NT Education CEO Gary Barnes ) read the riot act to both groups, telling them that they had to abandon their continued support and use of the bilingual program and that the continued support by the Yambirra School Council for bilingual education at their school was "unacceptable" to the Department.

Crikey also understands that many of those who had attended the meetings were upset and angry with Barnes and the NT Education staffers accompanying him, with the two issues of real concern being the absolute disregard Barnes showed for Yolngu leadership and ownership of their school program and his apparent total ignorance of and disinterest in bilingual education and Indigenous Education in general.
A forked tongue on bilingual education in the NT
Bi-lingual education is not the only two-way process. So are building community support for education and valuing the teachers who work in remote schools. There is little evidence that either is happening well at the moment.

Attracting quality teachers is a high priority of the NT education department at present. Yet senior Darwin bureaucrats are visiting schools and telling teachers with proven track records to shape up or ship out.

For further information about bi-lingual education please see Living Knowledge's 'both ways' education

To have a say Lingo are producing postcards to send to our friendly politicians: DON’T CUT OFF OUR TONGUES!

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