Aboriginal Educator Workforce Initiatives

Quality education engages and empowers children and young people: through positive relationships in safe, supportive and welcoming learning environments where cultural, social and linguistic diversity is valued, celebrated and embedded in learning.

Young people in the Northern Territory (NT) start in early learning programs and school education already equipped with deeply established knowledge systems, cultural values and ways of learning that have been shaped by their families and communities.

Teachers have the biggest in-school impact on positive student learning outcomes. Local Aboriginal teachers provide continuity for student learning through an ongoing commitment to their communities, helping to increase engagement and provide experiences for Aboriginal students that make learning more meaningful, relevant, accessible and culturally responsive.

The NT Department of Education is setting a new course for student engagement as outlined in the Education Engagement Strategy 2022 to 2031. Strategic initiatives that support this include:

Remote Aboriginal Teacher Education (RATE), which encompasses the previous Assistant Teacher Project, streamlines support for Aboriginal educators through delivery of a targeted suite of professional development opportunities, including: non-accredited training; Vocational Education and Training, and tertiary education qualifications.

RATE builds capacity of existing Aboriginal educators in remote and very remote education settings at every step of their education careers, and creates opportunities for Aboriginal educators who aspire to become qualified teachers. RATE currently supports several initiatives:

  • School-based traineeships: in-school based education support for year 10 to 12 in Aboriginal remote schools.
  • VET education qualifications: certificate III, certificate IV, diploma and advice on further study options.
  • Initial teacher education qualifications: undergraduate certificate, diploma, bachelor and advice on further study options.
  • Professional Learning Grant: flexible vocational education and training initiative that provides coordination and grant funding to support Aboriginal educators to access professional learning that has an accredited training outcome.
  • Mentoring training: targeted at experienced assistant teachers who want to build their skills around supporting and mentoring emerging assistant teachers.

For further information about RATE or how the team can best support you, email assistant-teach.det@education.nt.gov.au.

Scholarships to the value of $15,000 per year (dependant on study load) are available for Aboriginal people in urban, regional and remote NT locations who are aspiring teachers and are currently studying, or are eligible to enrol in initial teacher education courses at a NT higher education institution.

For further information, go to the Teach in the Territory website, or email aboriginalschola.doe@education.nt.gov.au.

Last updated: 20 April 2022

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