The 10-year strategy will see several initiatives rolled out to embed international learning within the state’s school curriculum and support South Australia’s international student cohort.
“There are enormous benefits to students having cultural awareness and an understanding of global issues”
“South Australia’s social and economic prosperity is increasingly connected to our ability to look beyond our state, to build relationships, share and create knowledge, and pursue opportunities internationally,” SA education minister John Gardner told The PIE News.
“Our schools and preschools have a key role to play in ensuring that children and young people have the knowledge and capabilities to actively participate in a diverse and interconnected world. The young South Australians in our schools and preschools are the next generation of leaders, problem-solvers and entrepreneurs.”
Initiatives within the strategy include a series of scholarships for secondary students, as well as tools and resources to help teach intercultural competence within the curriculum.
“Welcoming international students into South Australian government schools provide unique opportunities for enriching intercultural understanding, learning and the curriculum,” Gardner said.
“There are enormous benefits to students having cultural awareness and an understanding of global issues, as well as the skills to communicate across borders with people from various language and cultural backgrounds, which will help our students succeed in achieving their employment potential.”
The strategy will also set up a mentoring network, with schools already experienced in outbound and inbound international education receiving $10,000 to help them share expertise and provide professional development for staff.
Up to 20 schools with less experience of hosting international students, meanwhile, will be able to take advantage of a $1.6 million Internationalising Schools Fund, which will offer tailored packages, including teacher training, development of homestay option and building sister-schools overseas.
According to a department spokesperson, the strategy, which has an initial funding period of four years, will go under review in 2022 to determine success and future initiatives.
There are currently just over 1,500 international students enrolled in South Australia’s public schools.