Rural Inspire: Poised to Expand
The Country Education Partnership (CEP) is thrilled to announce an expansion of its Rural Inspire Initiative, following a funding commitment from the Federal Government.
The move will see the initiative expanded from its Victorian base to similarly support interstate rural and remote communities, as recommended in last year’s Federal Independent Review into Regional, Rural and Remote Education (the Halsey Report).
Specifically, the interstate program will be designed to support young adults transitioning from formal education (school) into their next phase of life — such as university, TAFE or the workforce — with an aim of lifting aspirations among rural and remote school graduates.
CEP Chief Executive Phil Brown said the federal commitment was in recognition of the program’s existing success in Victoria.
“It is truly wonderful to see our program being recognised at a national level, and we are extremely grateful to the Federal Government for its commitment to see Rural Inspire rolled out to other Australian states,” Mr Brown said.
“We would equally like to acknowledge the work, and foresight, of the Victorian Government and, specifically, Education Minister James Merlino, who has championed the Rural Inspire concept in Victoria since its inception.”
To expand the Rural Inspire profile, work will soon begin in partnership with key interstate rural and remote education organisations, as well as various state education sectors, and rural communities.
The program’s roll-out will initially see the establishment of the highly-esteemed Rural Youth Ambassador Program in each state, as the key first step toward a national Rural Inspire offering.
From there, specific interstate activities will be established, including:
- A Rural Youth Ambassador program in each state, with a planned annual National Rural Youth Ambassador forum in Canberra;
- The linking of successful rural people back to the communities in which they grew up;
- An online platform to provide a range of information and support services targeted at rural and remote young people;
- The provision of a range of School to Next activities supporting rural and remote young people as they transition from formal schooling to further study or employment.
It is anticipated the Rural Inspire interstate expansion will begin during Term Four of this year, with work now underway to recruit relevant staff to coordinate the programs.
“We are now looking for a highly-passionate, creative and committed person with great knowledge of rural and remote communities to develop and drive this exciting initiative, nationally,” Mr Brown said.
“We encourage potential candidates to make contact with CEP directly and promptly,” he said.