CQU and Kutta Mulla Gorinna Special Assistance School Partnership RE-Engages Youth in Education

The Kutta Mulla Gorinna Special Assistance School has been successful in supporting vulnerable and disengaged youth with an influx of students enrolled in further education and training programs.

TOP: Courtney Pilcher, Clinton Weazel and Jakken Brand BOTTOM: Riley Poli (STN student – Cert II Engineering) and Damon Langlands (SUN student – Bachelor of Music)

Since opening at CQUniversity’s Mackay City campus one year ago, the Kutta Mulla Gorinna School has provided secondary schooling opportunities to young people who are disconnected and alienated from the conventional school system.

Despite the disruption caused by COVID-19, the students transitioned back to school-based learning and have been involved in a variety of hands-on activities to help develop core literacy and numeracy, communication and life skills.

With over 53 students currently enrolled in the school, Executive School Director Justin Giblett said many were focused on their future and embraced the pathways available to them for further study, training and employment.

“Over 40 per cent of our senior cohort are currently enrolled in either Vocational Education and Training (VET) through the Start TAFE Now (STN) program or university-level classes in the Start Uni Now (SUN) program at CQUniversity.

“Unfortunately, some students missed out on enrolment for this year due to COVID-19 but will be enrolled in the next intake.”

He explained how the partnership between the Kutta Mulla Gorinna School and CQU’s VET in Schools program has led to a surge in enrolments for 2021.

“We have seen a huge influx of students undertaking a VET certificate in 2021 with a 371 per cent increase in enrolments.

“26 Students will be studying a VET Certificate as part of our compulsory Senior Syllabus (Educational Program),” he said.

CQUniversity Associate Vice-President (North Queensland and Hinterland Region) Professor Pierre Viljoen said he was proud to see the students educational and social outcomes as a result of the partnership.

“After a disruptive year, it is great to see students considering their future and furthering their education.

“We offer a range of courses for students to gain new skills and a competitive edge in the workforce.”