National Partnerships Project


During 2010/11, a range of issues thought to be critical for success in Indigenous Schools were identified through:

  • community consultation
  • the development of the Strategic Plan (2010-2013)
  • annual implementation planning process.

These issues are:

  • Poor school attendance
  • Poor staff retention
  • Lack of intrinsic drive for learning in students
  • Lack of community support and participation in the life of the school
  • Student learning and achievement levels
  • The quality of teaching
  • A lack of trust between Indigenous and non-Indigenous staff
  • Lack of opportunity for Leadership development.

In response to these issues, during the Discourse and Discernment meeting held in Term 4 of 2010, key members of St Francis Xavier Catholic School and Catholic Education Office, identified a core concept. This core concept would be the focus of the St Francis Xavier Catholic School and Nauiyu Daly River, community wide action research project: ‘Ngambari Fimityatit- Learning Together’ that is now funded by the National Partnerships 2010-2014 project.

This concept was agreed as the key focus for improving student learning outcomes for the St Francis Xavier Catholic School. The following vision was born- “When we learn together, sharing and living the same language of learning, we will be empowered to create a new story for our future…”

Key characteristics

In order to achieve this vision, the following objectives will be reached:

  1. Sustain a shared language for learning- students, teachers, staff, leaders, parents
  2. Implement a whole school approach to learning which improves student learning outcomes
  3. Implement quality teaching and learning
  4. Work as a learning community to achieve our goals for our students
  5. Increase student aspirations and opportunities for their life choices.

Underpinnings of the project:

  • Engagement with world class research and practice
  • Working towards social sustainability through a systems approach to learning and leadership
  • Empowering Indigenous leaders through learning
  • Learning as a vehicle for change for students, teachers, leaders and community
  • Evidence based tools, resources, processes and practices
  • Developing as a learning collective through authentic enquiry around a shared purpose.

Current situation and expected outcomes

The project is currently underway. Activity that has commenced includes (but not limited to):

  • Key members visit to the school
  • Staff completion of spider graphs
  • Staff professional development
  • Weekly school meetings
  • Weekly staff meetings and reflections

Expected Outcomes

Expected outcomes of this project include:

  • An increase in student aspirations and opportunities for their life choices
  • A weekly gathering of community members at school, to share stories and cultural activities, and therefore an increase in community involvement in the school.