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Leading the way in Indigenous Education

23 June 2022 | Posted in Indigenous Education

Leading the way in Indigenous Education

Leisa Leon

By Leisa Leon

Project Officer - Emerging Leaders Incentive Scheme

Townsville Catholic Education

When it comes to Indigenous Education, Townsville Catholic schools strive to deliver an engaging educational experience, through opportunity, strategic support, and celebration of culture.

Students are at the centre of all that we do, whether that is supporting our students’ educational goals, providing opportunities for leadership development, or promoting positive post-school pathways.

At Townsville Catholic Education, we value Indigenous education and hold high expectations for our students. We encourage improvement, self-reflection, and goal-setting across the classroom. For our Indigenous students, we offer additional support through a range of initiatives, including the Emerging Leaders program.

The First Peoples Emerging Leaders Incentive Scheme, referred to as Emerging Leaders Program, is available to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students within Townsville Catholic Education secondary schools. This program supports students to set and achieve goals for school attendance, academic improvement and engagement. It also offers an incentive, selected by students, to add extra motivation when working towards goals.

We work closely with our individual schools to deliver this program. For some schools this has meant establishing a mentor program, for others, it has involved implementing Indigenous Homerooms and Indigenous Study Club.

This year, we are celebrating the 5th year of this unique Townsville Catholic Education program. One that has shown that the dynamic, innovative, and grassroots approach has worked to improve access to quality education in our communities and positively impacted our students and families in tangible and meaningful ways including: 

  • 100% Indigenous female project team
  • 65% of funding in 2021 was directly provided to the people the grant is intended to benefit; the students and their families.
  • 86% of Emerging Leaders passing English in 2021
  • 75% of Emerging Leaders passing Maths in 2021
  • Plus, more than 1500 students have transitioned successfully through the program since its launch in 2018

The Emerging Leaders Program has helped me to step out of my comfort zone and take on new challenges that have led me to where I am today. I have loved  engaging with all of the opportunities and pushing myself to unleash my potential,” said Elle De Daunton, Ryan Catholic College Captain. 

Townsville Catholic Education is awaiting funding commitments from the National Indigenous Australians Agency (NIAA) for the Emerging Leaders Program into the future.

For more information about the Emerging Leaders Program, contact the Project Team at

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