Helping Aboriginal children engage in school

Education is a key factor in reducing disadvantage. That’s why Save the Children Australia believe that regular school attendance is vital for a child’s development.

Running since 2008, our School Attendance program in the Northern Territory and South Australia helps remove barriers that inhibit school attendance.

Why a School Attendance program is important

Every child has the right to an education. Yet, research shows that Aboriginal children often struggle to participate in formal education. Many children only attend school sporadically.

Nationally, Aboriginal children are twice as likely as non-Aboriginal children to be absent from school. Many parents lack confidence in the school environment due to their own disengagement from education.

Save the Children’s School Attendance program

We work to increase school attendance and engagement for primary and middle school-aged children, with particular focus on Aboriginal communities.

Local Save the Children staff work with parents, children, schools and community leaders to address local issues around nutrition, housing and transport to help ensure children participate regularly in school.

Save the Children Australia’s extensive experience working with remote Aboriginal communities has found that families benefit from support in daily, routine-based activities. We work with individual families to establish practical, before-school routines for at-risk students.

Culturally focused holiday camps and family days also help children develop a range of life skills and strengthen family relationships.

Where we run our School Attendance program

In the Northern Territory, we work with communities in Knuckeys Lagoon, Minmarama Park, Bagot and One Mile Damand Gurdorrka in Darwin.We also partner with Ceduna Area School, Crossways Lutheran School, Koonibba Aboriginal School and Yalata Anungu School on the far west coast of South Australia.

How we know we’re helping children engage in school

The average attendance rates across all primary schools involved in our School Attendance program has increased from less than 60 percent in 2010 to almost 80 percent in 2013.

Who makes our program possible

We’re grateful to the generous support of a philanthropic foundation and generous Australians who fund our School Attendance program.

Helping Aboriginal children engage in school


Related Programs

Want to learn more?

    Contact our South Australia office:

    Postal address:
    PO Box 114,
    Glenside, SA 5065

    +61 8 8338 1777

    Email us

    Contact our Northern Territory office:

    55 Hudson Fysh Avenue
    Ludmilla, NT 0830

    Postal address:
    PO Box 1127
    Nightcliff, NT 0814

    +61 8 8946 0400

    +61 8 8941 723