Hastening Quickly and Slowly: Seeking to address Indigenous Australian literacy

Sue Erica Smith, Melissa Kelaart

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    This chapter presents an analysis of some of the issues in Indigenous education in the Northern Territory (NT) in the early years and primary school setting contrasted with national and global dimensions in related fields of research, policy and practice. Approaches to Indigenous literacy, language and numeracy in Finland, Singapore and Japan are critically compared with the Australian models, specifically in Indigenous early years and primary education in the NT. Of particular interest are new initiatives, such as the Cape York Aboriginal Australian Academy (CYAAA) (Coughlin, 2011), the Closing the Gap report (Australian Government, 2014a) and the Review of Indigenous education in the Northern Territory (Wilson, 2014). Perennial areas of concern in Indigenous primary education include early years development, readiness for school, language development and literacy, numeracy approaches, attendance, and health and wellbeing, but these goals are invariably hampered by policy switches and lack of resourcing and flexibility to accommodate the specificities of diverse cultures.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationChallenges in global Learning
    Subtitle of host publicationDealing with education issues from an international perspective
    EditorsAnia Lian, Peter Kell, Paul Black, Koo Yew Lee
    Place of PublicationNewcastle upon Tyne, UK
    PublisherCambridge Scholars Publishing
    Number of pages15
    ISBN (Electronic)9781443844987
    ISBN (Print)9781443899802
    Publication statusPublished - 2017


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