Shared ownership and community capacity building

Year: 2006

Author: Howard, Peter, Perry, Bob

Type of paper: Refereed paper

The Mathematics in Indigenous Contexts project was undertaken in a rural Western NSW site from 2003-2006. The project demonstrated the potential of shared ownership of mathematics curriculum development among Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal community members as a way of enhancing the understanding and respect of each group for the other as well as developing the mathematical knowledge of primary and secondary students in the community.

In 2005 - 2006, the Building Community Capacity project sought to identify key aspects of meaningful engagement between schools and Aboriginal communities in the development and implementation of contextualised, relevant and connected mathematics curriculum and teaching and learning strategies to enhance Aboriginal students' mathematics outcomes. This project utilised the success of the Mathematics in Indigenous Contexts project in the rural western NSW site as the entry point for its investigation in this same site.

This paper describes the Building Community Capacity project, reports on the critical elements of community engagement which led to the success of the Mathematics in Indigenous Contexts project in the western NSW site and provides underlying principles which other communities might consider in their own community capacity building.