Mandating retention in school: challenges for an Australian regional community

Hill, Angela, and Dawes, Glenn (2005) Mandating retention in school: challenges for an Australian regional community. In: Papers from Redesigning Pedagogy Research and Practice Conference. pp. 1-10. From: Redesigning pedagogy: research, policy and practice, 30 May - 01 Jun 2005, Singapore.

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In 2003 the Queensland state government announced major reforms to the schooling system. These reforms are enshrined in the Youth Participation in Education and Training Act 2003 and include the requirement from 2006 for young people to remain in school until 16 years of age or completed Year 10. Beyond this phase there will be a ‘compulsory participation’ phase when a young person will be required to further their education until they turn 17 unless they are involved in paid work for a minimum of 25 hours per week.

In many communities, such legislation will present major challenges. This paper reports on research from one community and explores the issues around retention of students to years 10, 11 and 12 where current retention rates are as low as 13% for some students. A statistical profile of the community and schools is provided, along with interview data with school personnel, youth workers, and young people who are in school or have recently left. Views from young people are compared and contrasted with school personnel to explore the different perspectives on school retention.

The research reviews the factors both external to the schools and within the schools that link to low retention rates and reveal a range of specific community issues related to mobility and knowledge of the world of work. Addressing these challenges will be essential in order for this regional community to conform to the new government legislation.

Item ID: 802
Item Type: Conference Item (Presentation)
Keywords: retention; Australia; secondary education
Date Deposited: 20 Oct 2006
FoR Codes: 13 EDUCATION > 1399 Other Education > 139999 Education not elsewhere classified @ 50%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1608 Sociology > 160809 Sociology of Education @ 50%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9599 Other Cultural Understanding > 959999 Cultural Understanding not elsewhere classified @ 51%
94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9405 Work and Institutional Development > 940501 Employment Patterns and Change @ 49%
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