The first national curriculum document outlining how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages can be taught in schools has been released for public consultation.
Minister for School Education, Peter Garrett said the draft Framework for Aboriginal Languages and Torres Strait Islander Languages would support community language revival and maintenance.
Draft framework released
Under the framework there will be three different learning pathways to best cater for particular groups of students including the First Language Learner Pathway, which will cater for students whose first language is still spoken as the main or one of the main languages of everyday communication in their communities.
The Language Revival Learner Pathway will cater for students learning Aboriginal languages and Torres Strait Islander languages in various stages of recovery and revitalisation by their owners or custodians; and the Second Language Learner Pathway is designed to cater for students learning an Aboriginal language or Torres Strait Islander language.
“Keeping language alive in our communities is really important, but until now there has been no national approach,” Mr Garrett said.
“Under the new national curriculum we want to see a more consistent approach while still making the curriculum flexible and able to take into account local needs and circumstances.”
He said there were more than 250 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages spoken in Australia.
“This draft framework sets out how teachers and schools can work with local communities to keep language alive and encourage more young Indigenous Australians to learn and communicate in language,” he said.
Mr Garrett said the Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) developed the draft framework in close consultation with expert Aboriginal languages and Torres Strait Islander languages advisory groups.
It is available for public comment until 25 July and can be accessed at this PS News link.