Direct Instruction in indigenous schools Cape York Australia

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Direct Instruction in indigenous schools Cape York Australia

Post by maizie »

Post subject: Re: Engelmann, Australia, indigenous schools

Posted by Yvonne Meyer Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:55 pm

There are no research papers yet as this is the first or second year of full implementation. Noel Pearson gives the information about progress in this Q & A session.

Q&A: Radical Hope Book: A Talk by Noel Pearson ... yer/117/38)

Prior to SRA/DI, Pearson brought in MULTILIT and they ran a remedial programme. Papers on this can be found on the MULTILIT and/or MUSEC and/or search Kevin Wheldall. Sorry I don't have the links at hand but its pretty easy to find.

I assume you are English and might not be familiar with the previous history, so briefly;

Going back to early White Settlement period, well-meaning Missionaries taught Indiginous children English reading & writing. This policy continues today with some of our best high-fee private faith-based schools running scholarship programmes. But we had a dark period, especially around the 1950's where Government policy was to take children of mixed parentage away from their families and put them into orphanges where they were supposed to receive an education but mostly didn't. This forced seperation (the Stolen Generation) is what most Austrlians consider our shameful period.

We rebounded into our Politically Correct period where Indiginous schools with Indiginous teachers were supposed to teach both English literacy & numeracy as well as the local language & culture. The result, our Ed School 'Perfessors' carrying on about how an Indiginous child's ability to 'read the bush' was the equivilent to being able to read English and massive illiteracy for Indiginous students.

Noel Pearson popped up saying that the grandparents in his community could read the Bible backwards and forewards (because they had been educated at Mission schools) but the grandchildren could not read at all (because they had gone to PC schools).

Pearson ruffles a lot of feathers because he also recommends that Indiginous stduents in remote areas shold go to boarding school to access higher quality education. The PC reaction is that this is too much like the Stolen Generation.

Pearson brought in MULTILIT, which is a remedial programme for students in Year 4 and above. This achieved some success but not enough. Pearson then decided to go for full immersion with Direct Instruction. This caused a PC-backlash which was reported in the News with certain school staff members who were given an ultimatum, get on board with DI or get the boot, gee-ing up parents to sign a petition against DI. Some school staff were fired and DI, Owen Englemann and NIFDI (National Institute for Direct Instruction) came in.

You can search My School for NAPLAN results but there is a difficulty with the schools changing names. The first schools to use MULTILIT were in Coen, Aurukun and Hopevale. But now more schools in the Cape York Penisular are involved and they have been consolidated as Cape York Aboriginal Australian Academy (CYAAA).

There is some information available @

Also, the following might be of interest by way of background

Scripted lessons start a classroom revival
Miranda Devine
May 29, 2010.

Read more: ... z1oTB6uRd1

Letter in response to Noel Pearson’s Quarterly Essay (“Radical Hope: Education and Equality in Australia”)
Published in Quarterly Essay 36, December 2009

JAC adds this information:

There has also been some good reporting on the ABC 'Four Corners' current affairs programme. See ' Return to Aurukun." ... 201702.htm

The Pearson solution

by: ALR: Inga Glendinnen, From:The Australian
December 02, 2009 ... 5804242266