The Federal Member for Parkes, Mark Coulton, has praised the success of the Clontarf Foundation on being able to deliver successful outcomes in the field of aboriginal education and Closing the Gap.
Mr Coulton said that he had become a supporter of the Clontarf Foundation over the last several years as he was able to see the success of Clontarf Academies first hand.
Clontarf Academies, now open in Bourke, Brewarrina, Coonamble and Moree, operate in conjunction with local high schools for at-risk aboriginal students who would otherwise not attend or have low school attendance.
“I have been to several early morning footy training sessions with the boys and their enthusiasm for sport and their engagement at school is very apparent,” said Mr Coulton.
“The Clontarf model is very intensive however I believe it is well worth funding because the positive outcomes are so evident.”
Mr Coulton recently spent time with students from Bourke, Brewarrina and Coonamble Clontarf Academies at a team building weekend at Lake Burrendong.
“The boys were extremely well behaved and excited to have their first go water skiing. The camaraderie and friendship between the boys gives them a solid support network as they continue through their schooling and go on to employment.”
Mr Coulton said that the staff employed by the Clontarf Foundation are integral to the success of the program.
“The staff act as mentors to the boys, acting in a guidance role as they consider their future. Graduates from Clontarf in our area have already obtained full time employment in the construction industry.”
“There are many programs aimed at improving education outcomes for aboriginal students. The Clontarf Academies are a success and they deserve the support of both government and communities.”