> Why

Why we did it

We wanted to maximise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders students' learning in mathematics and development of numeracy in the middle years with the idea that students would be more likely to continue doing mathematics in the senior years and thus improve their employment opportunities.

The Gladstone Regional Council area is a growing residential area, with significant rural, residential and industrial areas. The Council area encompasses a total land area of about 10,500 square kilometres including national parks, state forests, coastline, beaches and islands. Major industries include an alumina refinery, an aluminium smelter, a power station and port facilities. Rural land is used mainly for cattle grazing, with some grain growing, fodder cropping, and timber and tropical fruit production.

We wanted to improve learning outcomes in mathematics for students so they had more employment options given the growth of industry in the Gladstone region. One of our main objectives was to develop high expectations of ourselves as teachers and of our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders students.

We were also driven by the need for:

  • Sustainable practices across all schools
  • Changing the way our teachers interact with Indigenous students
  • Sustainable improvement in the outcomes for Indigenous students in mathematics
  • Not producing a product (rather, a better way of teaching)
  • Upskilling teachers and engaging students, to improve outcomes
  • Establish procedures/process which become engrained within the schools.