Major conference to discuss the future of education and the role of the community

Some of the State’s leading education experts will gather in Hobart this week to talk about the future of education in Tasmania.

The conference will be hosted by the Beacon Foundation and will focus on the role the community plays in supporting young people both at school and once they finish.

Beacon CEO, Scott Harris, said the conference will discuss how the education system has evolved in recent years and the opportunities to improve the way we support young Tasmanians.

“The theme of the conference is ‘Beyond the school gate’, and will focus on how we can harness the support of the whole community to help young people through the education system and into the real world,” Mr Harris said.

“With the help of the Tasmanian Government and the Paul Ramsay Foundation, we have worked closely with six communities around the State for the past five years trying to bring schools and their local communities closer together.

“What we’ve found is that when the schools and their communities work together and support each other, the big winners are our kids.  We’ve found that by bringing schools and their communities closer many students do better at school and importantly, once they’ve finished school they are more likely to find a job that really interests them, which means they are more likely to give back to their community.

“We call this project ‘Collective ed.’ and it will be one of the main areas of discussion at the conference.

“There has been a lot of discussion recently about student retention and extending high schools to year 12.  As part of these discussions the focus is always on kids themselves, their needs and how well we are equipping them for the future, which is all part of the Collective ed. project.

“We’re thrilled that one of our guest speakers will be Jan Owen AM.  Jan has developed new approaches in social policy, innovation, education and entrepreneurship that are now world-renowned and has pioneered collaborative approaches to improving communities.”