RATEP - a community based teacher education program


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An Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community based teacher education program
Mark Linkson and Gail Mitchell

Presentation at Yamaiyamarna Paitya | Teachers are deadly! 2012 national MATSITI conference, July 9-11, Tarndanya (Adelaide), 9-11 July.
More Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Teachers Initiative.

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RATEP - a community based teacher education program

  1. 1. RATEP – community based teacher education Adelaide, Tues 10 July 2012Gail Mitchell - RATEP State Coordinator, QueenslandDepartment of Education Training and EmploymentMark Linkson - Coordinator, RATEP Diploma of Education(ATSI) 39241QLD, Tropical North Queensland TAFE
  2. 2. My journey so far…
  3. 3. RATEP – community based teacher education 1. Define RATEP: its aims, rationale, structure and procedures 2. Explore the cultural contexts of TAFE RATEP delivery 3. Identify barriers to study success and delivery positives from TAFE RATEP student destinations survey
  4. 4. What is RATEP? RATEP is a community basedAboriginal and Torres Strait Islander teacher education program
  5. 5. Rationale for RATEP RATEP originated in 1990 as a direct response by government to the wishes of many remote QLD Indigenous communities for teacher training.Given isolation, dispersed nature and the smallsize of many remote Indigenous communities(and the likelihood of low numbers of studentsseeking enrolment in the program), a uniquemodel of access and delivery was developed byEQ, JCU and Cairns TAFE. It was known asRATEP. The Remote Area Teacher EducationProgram. (York & Henderson: 2003) Poruma, Torres Strait
  6. 6. Rationale for RATEPSince 1990, RATEP has produced over800 TAFE graduates and 150 JCU B.Ed.s! TNQTAFE graduation 2010
  7. 7. Aims of RATEP• To increase access to further and highereducation for Aboriginal and Torres StraitIslander people• To increase the number of Aboriginal &Torres Strait Islander teachers in Qldschools▲ RATEP Diploma Graduate ▲ Justin working as a classroom teacher. 2003, Justin Washington He is now Principal of Thallon SS.
  8. 8. Key Performance IndicatorsSimilar to any long term strategic planningprocess and are frequently monitored: • Participating student numbers • Number of sites • Retention rates • Exiting student numbers / proportion • Increased employment of Indigenous registered teaching staff.
  9. 9. Structure of RATEPCertificate III in Education (ATSI) TNQTAFE – Years 11 & 12 (2 yrs) Students enter at theCertificate IV in Education (ATSI) appropriate TNQTAFE - 8 months (Mar-Nov) level depending on ability and Diploma of Education (ATSI) intention. TNQTAFE - 1 year fulltime (Jan- Dec) Bachelor of Education (Primary) JCU – 3.5 years full time
  10. 10. OFF-SITE MODEL OVERVIEW• Certificate IV in Education• Targeted at currently employed Teacher Aides• Small student cohort• ‘Elluminate’ training & use• Online assessment – training & use• ‘Linked school’ commitment• Part-time Support Tutor access• Dedicated Teacher Coordinator(distance)• Set block residential workshops• If pilot year successful, may expand to Diploma in 2013
  11. 11. Teacher Coordinators (TCs)DETE employs qualified teachers at each site whosupport students:• Teaching• Course Organisation• Administration• Student SupportTCs are pivotal to the success of RATEP
  12. 12. Boigu Is. Poruma Bamaga Remote Some Aurukun Lockhart River RATEP site with TCpast & Visiting TC Kowanyamapresen Doomadgee Innisfail Regional t DajarraRATEP Rockhampton sites Woorabinda Rural Birdsville Maryborough 1990 - 2012
  13. 13. How does RATEP work? Teleconferences Virtual classrooms Residentials Printed learning guides Online chats and forums On-site teachers / tutors Practicums Field tripMost RATEP sites are in primaryschools, some in high schools
  14. 14. Indigenous cultures intrinsicOur stakeholders expect and demand that RATEPgraduates will bring more to their communities, schoolsand classrooms than just effective teaching practicesand curriculum knowledge.They want competent teachers who are strong inpedagogy and also strong in culture.RATEP graduates should be secure in their identities;and able to use and promote the use of Indigenousunderstandings and ways of knowing.RATEP delivery must affirm that “the educationsystem” values their cultures and ways of knowing.
  15. 15. Valuable Indigenouscommunity input•Applicant interview panels (EQ + TAFE + community)•Site Advisory Committees (EQ + RATEP students + community)•Community Advisory Board (TAFE + EQ + community)•Course Development Advisory Committee (all partners incl. community)•RATEP Management Committee (all partners incl. community)
  16. 16. Cultural contexts at TAFETAFE RATEP aims to deliver Indigenouspeople the skills and knowledge to work asculturally relevant and aware teachers. Wedo this through:• Three teacher education themed VETlevel courses initiated by Qld Indigenouseducation stakeholders• Indigenous specific units• Culturally relevant delivery• Continuous improvement
  17. 17. TAFE RATEP awards We deliver specifically created VET level programs of study: 39239QLD Certificate III in Education (ATSI) 39240QLD Certificate IV in Education (ATSI) 39241QLD Diploma of Education (ATSI)These three awards were initiated by Indigenouseducation stakeholders in 2002 and written specificallyfor Indigenous people wishing to become teachers.
  18. 18. RATEP Vs Education Support Certificate III in Education Certificate III in Education Support Certificate IV in Education Certificate IV in Education Support Diploma of Education Diploma of Education Support 1. Aims to increase the number of Indigenous Aims to increase the number of trained teacherteachers in Queensland government schools. aides in Australian schools 2. Delivers and assesses the skills of teaching Delivers and assesses the skills of teacher aiding 3. Targets Indigenous people in order to Targets all Australians wishing to work inrespond to government policies that look to schools as Teacher Aidesimprove workplace participation of IndigenousAustralians.4. Indigenous identity and cultural perspectives Indigenous identity and cultural perspectives areare intrinsic to many of the core competencies available in some elective competencies(pre-fixed AIED) and some of the electives
  19. 19. RATEP Vs Education Support Certificate III in Education Certificate III in Education Support Certificate IV in Education Certificate IV in Education Support Diploma of Education Diploma of Education Support5. Indigenous identity and culture is embraced Indigenous identity and culture is not a priorityand referenced throughout the courses includingassessments and vocational placements(practicums). Indigenous knowledge is valued.6. Literacy and numeracy units are CORE. The Literacy and numeracy units are ELECTIVES.teaching and learning of literacy and numeracy Students of CHC08 may complete their studiesmust be a priority for any program aiming to train without explicit attention to, or improvement of,future classroom teachers. their own literacy and numeracy skills.7. A Community Advisory Board comprising No CABIndigenous stakeholders MUST conveneregularly to consider the cultural appropriatenessof all aspects of delivery.
  20. 20. Indigenous specificunits of competencyCert IV in EducationAIED403B Develop and apply knowledge ofscience Task 1: Demonstrate understandingof two Indigenous science concepts Employment of an Elder as informant and assessor is encouraged
  21. 21. AIED504B Develop and apply knowledge of alternative educational pedagogies Student e, w nc hen I gai ned comments erie al mys a lot exp igin elf. T , I fo at e th h Abor rs, ab ;out cultu he N undI us wit k e s rally T trip out mo lk I ta ation wor struggle up English and rew was ey re abou reall a e t Ed uc eople’s t to give y is a rding to -openin e p ou no It made me r seco see g som es y ealise there is nd la that ach more to teac ngua te hing than jus ge teaching… t The NT trip was a life changing experience, I realised that what I went through was trivial. Was inspiring
  22. 22. Culturally relevant delivery • Indigenous staff as teachers / support officers provide role models and mentors for students • Indigenous specific units of competency• Learning Guides written by experienced, culturally-awareteachers that include references to diverse Indigenouslives and contexts. Regularly reviewed by the CAB.• All students have at least 2 teachers allocated to theirstudies, their EQ TC and the TAFE Coordinator of theircourse + subject teachers.• All the latest communication technology: SMS, onlinetask submission and Elluminate (Blackboard)
  23. 23. Continuous improvementOUTCOME: In 2012, improved results reported by JCU forscreened Diploma graduates entering B.Ed course.
  24. 24. RecruitmentPotential RATEP students can include high schoolstudents, EQ staff (mostly Teacher Aides) andmembers of the local Indigenous Australiancommunity.•RATEP TC promotes within their communityand school•Word of mouth from students, families, schoolstaff and community members•Jobs Expos and school careers nights•Advertising in local newspapers•TAFE RATEP always fielding enquiries•Systemic news items and publicity
  25. 25. RecruitmentFor 2012, TNQTAFE accepted over 200applications for Cert III, IV and Diploma.All applicants must sit a Literacy andNumeracy pre-assessment. Levelled toACSF Levels 3 and 4.Of those, over 150 were interviewed.Interviews occurred mainly face-to-face withTAFE and local school staff including acommunity member.Of those, around 100 were offered places.
  26. 26. Destinations survey TNQTAFE graduates CIII, IV, Dip Six years from 2005 - 2010• 298 graduates who received 374 awards• 197 Diplomas, 124 Cert IV, 53 Cert III• 9 gained 3 awards, 58 gained 2 awards and 124 singles• 88% female (262), 12% male (36)• Half were over 30yrs old when first enrolledJune 2012: 25 B.Ed. (4 more by end of year).This gives a B.Ed. success rate for Diploma graduates of approximately 15%
  27. 27. Destinations survey TNQTAFE graduates CIII, IV, Dip Six years from 2005 - 2010298 graduates: 124 participated in the survey.Significantly for the B.Ed. success rate, how manydecided to access the guaranteed articulation pathwayto JCU?124 interviewed: 56 began JCU studies (about half)This gives a B.Ed. success rate for those TAFEgraduates who decide to continue studies with JCU of approximately 30%
  28. 28. Destinations survey B.Ed. success rate of 30% How acceptable is this figure of 30% success for all TAFE graduates who attempt JCU studies?25 Qld Indigenous adults living in rural, regional andremote areas have gained their B.Eds since 2009.Without RATEP this number may well have been zero.Therefore the success rate of RATEP must be judgedagainst the alternative; which for most of our studentsmeans NOT studying.
  29. 29. Destinations survey 2011 JCU RATEP B.Ed. graduatesPamai Gimini of Badu Island (Cert IV 2006, Diploma 2007) andMaryAnn Tamwoy of Darnley Island (Cert III 2005, Cert IV 2006,Diploma 2007). NB: nine other graduates in 2011
  30. 30. JCU Graduates Where are they now?Roles Number of peopleTeacher 85Principal / Head of Campus / 10Deputy PrincipalProject roles 6Other Ed Qld roles 6Other 44Total 151 graduates
  31. 31. Destinations survey B.Ed. success rate of 30%Factors which must be taken into account whenassessing this success rate:3.Many students will take longer than 3.5 years tocomplete the B.Ed., so 2010 Diploma graduates may notcomplete until 2015+4.There are many barriers to success for our studentswhich make this rate quite reasonable5.Some Diploma graduates deferred – which means they may still eventually graduate4. Some Diploma graduates enrolled in other Bachelor level courses (and lower) elsewhere
  32. 32. Destinations survey Barriers which inhibit success for our TAFE students furthering their studies to JCU 1. Family responsibilities 2. Financial difficulties 3. Literacy and numeracy challenges 4. Community responsibilities 5. Attending residentials73% of students worked while studying; this isprobably the most significant factor in slowing or stopping successful study.
  33. 33. Destinations survey TNQTAFE graduates CIII, IV, Dip Six years from 2005 - 2010 What happened to the other half of the TAFE graduates who did NOT attempt to go onto further tertiary studies?Of the 124 interviewed, 91 were currently employed and 7were seeking employment. 50 of those were working withEducation Queensland. That’s an employment rate of 75% This is a fantastic result for an initiative which at its core is an employment program!
  34. 34. Destinations survey Positive factors assisting study1. Support from family and friends2. One-on-one support from TC3. Proximity to the RATEP site Motivations to study1. Desire to become a teacher2. Want to do their jobs better3. Get a job4. Attain permanency in the school5. Act as a role model6. Earn more income
  35. 35. Destinations survey Positive impact of RATEP studies• Improvement in self-confidence• More employable• Increased professionalism (in education)• Positive attitude to further study• Developed a broader understanding of the world• Increased community capacity building• Positive intergenerational impact (role models)• Combatted stereotypes• Improved parenting
  36. 36. Success factors in RATEP1. On-site teachers (or at the very least tutors) basedin the communities2. Students have multiple layers of support (family, TC,peers at site, peers around the state, teachers andsupport officers)3. Indigenous community aspirations and interests arecentral to all aspects of delivery and management4. Overt documented school and community supportbefore and during the life of each community site5. Quality of the learning materials, delivery teams andapproaches used (culturally relevant and academically rigorous)
  37. 37. Micheal BealeGraduate teacher 2011
  38. 38. Issues for discussion • financial support for students is critical but highly complex to administer and potentially very expensive • RATEP predominantly attracts women in the middle years of life: how do we encourage younger people andespecially males?• what actions could address the 50% of TAFE graduateswho do not continue their studies?• how might VET competency based training be tailored tomimic the academic study approaches of university?• how does the assumed 30% B.Ed. success rate for TAFEgraduates compare with results for similar programs elsewhere?
  39. 39. Student Residentials Teacher – directed and learner - centred workshopswith time toenjoy varioustasks andform bondswith studentsand staff.
  40. 40. Classroom Experiences
  41. 41. RATEP Diploma fieldtrip Thursday Islandand Badu Island 2011
  42. 42. To learn more about RATEP You can contact the project team:Gail Mitchell Helen McDonaldState Coordinator RATEP, DETE Director RATEP, JCUGail.Mitchell@dete.qld.gov.au Helen.McDonald@jcu.edu.auIan Hodges Mark LinksonCoordinator RATEP, TNQTAFE Coordinator Diploma, TNQTAFEIan.Hodges@dete.qld.gov.au Mark.Linkson@dete.qld.gov.au www.ratep.eq.edu.au
  43. 43. Quality Indigenous teacher edn. is evidenced by an institution that: • has Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in positions relating to governance, leadership and management • provides academic support for students • provides financial support for students, including scholarships • provides personal support for students through counselling and advisory services • provides a culturally safe place to study • has high pass and retention rates that are the same for Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and other students• has Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures as highly visible and valued parts of the Institution • employs Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff • employs and trains skilled staff to be culturally competent. (M.Bat, PhD thesis 2011)
  44. 44. Quality Indigenous teacher edn. is evidenced by a curriculum that: • is accredited by the appropriate authority • has alternative entry pathways • has equitable entry selection processes • enrols people who are suitable to become teachers • has self-determination and emancipation as key outcomes • caters to a diverse range of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians• is distinctly different from other degrees• is designed to be equitable in delivery not just in graduate outcomes• connects with the community at all levels of development and delivery • includes innovative practices that are aimed to increase engagement • is adequately resourced (M.Bat, PhD thesis 2011)
  45. 45. Quality Indigenous teacher edn. is evidenced by curriculum content that: • has Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander knowledges and cultures at its core • has Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languagesas part of the instruction • has a good balance between theory and practice • is focused on pedagogy • has a strong emphasis on curriculum planning and skills for reflection on practice• has a strong emphasis on literacy• teaches both phonics and whole language approaches to reading• has a strong emphasis on numeracy• has a strong emphasis on assessment • has a strong emphasis on teaching skills • has a strong emphasis on classroom management
  46. 46. Recruitment
  47. 47. Recruitment
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