Defying distance, ameliorating access: school education for remote Australian students

Defying distance, ameliorating access: school education for remote Australian students

Authors

Natalie Downes, Philip Roberts, Michael Barbour

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18_EITN_2020_02_F5_Downes.pdf

Abstract

In Australia, rural and remote schools are known for their innovation in providing education throughout remote locations, with students accessing distance education since the early 1900’s. Distance education in Australia involves students learning in a different location to their teacher, using a combination of ‘asynchronous’ and ‘synchronous’ learning using advanced ICT products that enable them to interact. This paper provides an overview of these schools in New South Wales, an education jurisdiction that has adapted distance education schools to meet the diverse needs of students. This includes the inclusion of a distance education school for gifted students, and “Access Networks” where students attend their local high school, and groups of schools share teachers using co-timetabled subjects and technology to communicate. These schools highlight that education for students in geographically remote locations is not only possible, but provides many benefits for students, when we accept that ‘school’ doesn’t have to mean numbers of children attending one setting together.

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Keywords

school distance education; rural and remote education; Access Networks; online learning

DOI

https://doi.org/10.26203/jvkj-pb50

Published in Volume 27(2) Remote teaching to ensure equal access to education in rural schools,