MAREEBA State High School (MSHS) recognised some standout Indigenous students last Tuesday at the opening of the Term 3 ARTIE Academy.
The Achieving Results through Indigenous Education Academy assists in ‘Closing the Gap’ in education for Indigenous students.
The program provides Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students attending Queensland schools the opportunity to earn rewards for outstanding attendance. Five students were awarded for breaking their attendance goal of 90% by achieving 100% attendance.
MSHS Principal Scott Whybird believes this program is a stepping stone to helping students meet their goals.
“If we don’t get the kids to school, they’re not going to learn for a start,” he said
“Quite often you have kids who don’t want to come to school.
“What this program does is give them that little bit of a push, we all need that hook, and what the ARTIE program does is it gives them the incentive to come to school.
“And that’s a really important thing because let’s be honest; no one likes coming to school so this programs gets them to want to come to school.”
Although the ARTIE Academy focuses on attendance Mr Whybird believes that this program along with the schools ROLSTAR program help students academically.
“The links with behaviour is an important thing too, it’s great to come to school but you’ve also got to behave,” he said.
“There has been a slight increase in attendance, but this sort of program is a slow process.
“The ARTIE program marries well within the already implemented ROLSTAR program which rewards students for good behaviour and work.
“It’s all in the student’s court, they’ll all want to go to the fun day but they can’t, they don’t meet the attendance goals.”