Abstract: <p class="AbstracttextAJIE"><span lang="EN-GB">In late 2013, under the leadership of Prime Minister Abbott, the Australian Government announced a new policy designed to increase attendance rates in remote community schools—the Remote School Attendance Strategy (RSAS). The model assumed that employing local people in the program, which was designed to support parents get their children to school, would yield significant improvements and consequently improve educational outcomes. After a slight initial increase in school attendance rates, RSAS schools have seen average attendance rates decline since 2016, which now stand more than eight percentage points lower than at commencement. This article analyses My School data for Very Remote Aboriginal schools, showing how the RSAS school attendance results compare with similar non-RSAS schools. We question why the Australian Government continues to invest in a program that is not meeting its objectives, asking, what went wrong?. We do this by critically analysing 36 policy-related documents, looking for ideological clues that show why the government continues to invest in the program and how it sees it as “successful”. We conclude by raising ethical and accountability concerns about the RSAS, which lacks evidence of attendance improvement, and which potentially causes harm to its objects: First Nations students. </span></p>
Guenther, John, Osborne, Samuel, Corrie, Stephen, Rigney, Lester-Irabinna, Lowe, Kevin, 2022, The Remote School Attendance Strategy (RSAS): Why invest in a strategy that reduces attendance?, Volume:51, Journal Article, viewed 02 December 2023, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=39800.