The South Australian Government has launched a 10-year International Education Strategy, with an initial four-year investment of $6.25 million, with the intention of delivering “a suite of education initiatives with an international focus” to public pre-schools and schools across the state.
The investment will see students across both pre-school and primary school benefit from up to $800,000 in scholarships for “immersive international and intercultural experiences,” which includes overseas study tours for those in secondary education.
$1.6 million of the allocation is earmarked for the Internationalising Schools Fund, which will be established to offer tailored packages of support for up to twenty schools with “less experience” of hosting international students. The packages will provide schools with supports such as teacher training, release time to work with school communities developing homestay options and investment to build partnerships with sister-schools overseas.
Mentor schools with international education experience will each receive $10,000 to support them to share their knowledge with other schools and provide further professional development opportunities to staff.
Other measures include the tools and resources that support educators to teach intercultural components of the curriculum, as well as support to maximise sister-school relationships. The strategy bolsters existing work in pre-schools and schools to embed international learning and supports sustainable volumes of international student enrolments across the state.
A spokesperson for the Department of Education in South Australia said the investment reflects the state’s understanding that children are “the next generation of leaders, problem solvers and entrepreneurs who will innovate and start businesses that are connected to the world”.
By welcoming international students, and encouraging a greater global perspective, the spokesperson said, South Australia will be able to offer “unique opportunities for enriching intercultural understanding, learning and the curriculum”.
The initiatives in the strategy will be implemented in a staged approach and will be evaluated over the life of the 10-year strategy. The strategy may be viewed in full here.