Mallee Koori Konnect
Six young Aboriginal people in the Mallee region are participating in a new flexible learning program that is aiming to keep them more engaged with school.
Mallee Area Partnership was pleased to hear at a recent meeting about the Koori Konnect program, funded by the Department of Justice and Regulation and delivered by one of our Steering Committee members, the Mallee District Aboriginal Services. The Department of Education and Training Koori Education Coordinator provided valuable support referring and engaging young people in the Koori Konnect program.
It is similar to FLO Connect, the Mildura-based youth program that helps young people find new pathways to education, training and employment which received national recognition in 2014 for its innovative approach to service delivery.
Koori Konnect commenced in 2016 and provides a more specialised alternative for Aboriginal students who are disconnected to school and may face multiple other challenges in their lives. Importantly, it recognises the need to look at support beyond the individual student to their family, and for it all to be done in a culturally sensitive and appropriate way.
As one example of its more practical approach to learning, instead of studying maths in the classroom, students have begun to build a community kitchen garden, learning the skills to take measurements, work out costings, and purchase materials.
The program is continuing in 2017, with an additional 6 young people involved.