Indigenous Community Partnerships

Topic 1: Benefits of Indigenous Community Partnerships
Topic 2: Consultation with Indigenous Communities
• Topic 6.1: Benefits of Indigenous Community Partnerships
Topic 6.1: Benefits of Indigenous Community Partnerships
Benefits of Indigenous Community Relationships
There are so many benefits for all participants in the EC setting when an Indigenous community partnership is developed and utilized. This is a unique factor of this strategy in Indigenous Education. I am sure as you completed your first assessment item, this was highlighted and often repeated in your research and modules.
Indigenous Education Aspects
The benefits of Indigenous community partnerships can be visualized when we use the Indigenous Education Aspects as a guide. I have started to complete a table for you, after your research and work in this subject can you add to it? Don’t forget, if you gained the knowledge from a particular article/book, acknowledge it in your work (so you do not forget where it came from if you utilize it for your second assessment item).
Indigenous Children Indigenous Content Indigenous Communities
• Creates a sense of belonging and being within the EC setting
• Family becomes a recognized, acknowledged and visible partner in the learning environment
• Allows children’s voice to be recognized through family input
• Kinship is recognized and accepted within the learning environment
• Home language and responsibilities filter into EC • Local knowledge is utilized – histories, culture and contemporary
• Plays a part in the becoming aspect of EYLF, as the knowledge becomes part of the setting
• Local community members can become part of the learning for all children
• Extend reconciliation through practice • Become a vital contributor to curriculum
• Can extend into the processes for decision making beyond the classroom
• The community becomes part of the learning environment
• Community voice is valued
Australian Professional Standards of Teaching – Early Childhood
Hopefully you are aware of the Australian Professional Standards of Teaching (APST). You may be even starting to collect your evidence so you can move into the level of Proficient. There is a brief introduction and link to the a document for early childhood teachers in our Extra Resources tab (on the left). Indigenous community partnerships can be beneficial to you collecting the evidence as well. I have suggested how having an Indigenous community partnership can aid your evidence for APST Proficient level.

APST Standard and Descriptor Community Partnership Link
Standard 1 – Know students and how they learn
Descriptor 1.4.2 – Design and implement effective teaching strategies that are responsive to the local community and cultural setting, linguistic background and histories of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. This descriptor lists the reasons why you need to have a partnership. An Indigenous community partnership enables the educator to develop a program that is responsive rather then one that is text book driven.
Standard 2 – Know the content and how to teach it.
Descriptor 2.4.2 – Provide opportunities for children to develop understanding of and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures, languages. The focus in this descriptor is one of reconciliation. To demonstrate reconciliation, Indigenous communities need to be involved. This is a process that should be evident in all EC settings, so all children can become a part of it.
Standard 3 – Plan for and implement effective teaching and learning
Descriptor 3.4.2 – Select and/or create and use a range of resources, including ICT, to engage children in their learning. Try and select local resources as a priority. Having an Indigenous community partnership can aid you in sourcing these resources and, if needed, developing them.
Standard 4 – Create and maintain supportive and safe learning environments
Descriptor 4.1.2 – Establish and implement inclusive and positive interactions to engage and support all children in early childhood setting activities. Local Indigenous community partnerships will inform you of what the Indigenous child experiences within the community. Educators can include this knowledge to support the Indigenous child by linking the EC setting to community events.
Standard 5 – Assess, provide feedback and report on student learning
Descriptor 5.5.2 – Report clearly, accurately and respectfully to families about their child’s achievement making use of accurate and reliable records. Having local Indigenous community partnerships will enable you and educate you in how to report clearly, accurately and respectfully to Indigenous families.
Standard 6 – Engage in professional learning
Descriptor 6.1.2 – Use the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers and advice from colleagues to identify and plan professional learning needs. The local Indigenous community can introduce you to Indigenous people in other fields and education settings that you can engage with for the development of professional learning.
Standard 7 – Engage professionally with colleagues, parents/careers and the community
Descriptor 7.3.2 – Establish and maintain respectful collaborative partnerships with families regarding their children’s learning and wellbeing. Our parents and careers can be extended through kinship responsibilities and an Indigenous community partnership allows you to identify and respectfully share with them.

• Topic 6.2: Consultation with Indigenous Communities
Topic 6.2: Consultation with Indigenous Communities
Consultation with Indigenous Communities
Some Indigenous communities have their own processes and expectations when consulting Indigenous communities. When you are unaware of these processes, you may start your search (and maybe initiate the development of for your center) for local consultation through other organizations. This section will examine and share some of these processes to help you develop or begin your own journey of Indigenous community partnership.
Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care (SNIACC)
Hopefully, many of you are already aware of SNAICC (we have utilized their resources in other modules). They have developed a resource that you can utilize.
“The framework represented in the diagram below provides the basis for the audit tool, drawing on the evidence of what is important for genuine partnerships in service delivery for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and families. The outer circle describes the four key domains that inform all the processes that take place in the inner-circle with the aim to achieve the core objective at the center of the diagram”.

Indigenous Community Advisory Organizations
Some states and local areas have Indigenous community advisory organizations. In NSW, there is the NSW Aboriginal Education Consultative Group (AECG). The diagram below (from their site), demonstrates how local Indigenous communities are important to their operation. This means there could be a local AECG group near you, that you can contact and work with to develop a partnership for your center.
The NSW AECG Inc. has local, regional and state network that enables effective communication allowing Aboriginal community viewpoint to be echoed throughout the organization.

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