Katherine Region
The core business of Education at Lajamanu Community Education Centre is to work in cultural collaboration to deliver high quality, inclusive and culturally appropriate student learning. We are a Two-Way Learning school which encapsulates the ethos that, for Warlpiri people, first language maintenance and cultural maintenance are inextricably linked. We also work on the premise that quality delivery of first language learning and acquisition in the early years, underpinned by a strong ESL methodology, can result in quality second language higher -order learning in the world language of English. We always strive for the best ways of extending the school culture into the home and community and, conversely, to extend the home and community culture into the school. Information and technological resourcefulness is given the highest priority across subject areas, to enhance the 'here and now ' environment we are in and to provide opportunities to present a world view. In everything we do, we aim to have students leave our school as strong Yapa, independent in both a Yapa and Kardiya world. Presently, we employ two full-time Yapa classroom teachers, and there are 25 regular Yapa educational support workers taking an active part in classroom tuition. Attendance rates of students are still variable, with widespread movement of many families about the Territory due to a combination of cultural obligations and recreational pursuits.Well documented chronic health issues also impact on the attendance of many students, however, when all families are present in the community, attendance approaches 90%.


Lajamanu C.E.C is situated approx. 580 km by road south west of Katherine in the Northern Territory of Australia. Lajamanu is situated in semi-arid country with vegetation surrounding the community consisting of spinifex grasses, acacia, grevilleas and occasional eucalyptus. Rainfall averages from 250 to 300 milimetres and depending on the amount of rainfall, Hooker Creek normally flows annually. The road to Lajamanu may become impassable at times during the wet season (Jan-April) The dreaming of Lajamanu is wampana, the Spectacled Hare Wallaby . It was proclaimed an Aboriginal Reserve in 1948. The community is predominantly Warlpiri although the community is located in Gurindji country. People were moved to Lajamanu (Hooker Creek) from Yuendumu and from other desert locations during the early 1950's. Hooker Creek ceased to be a welfare settlement in the mid 1970's. There are some people in the community from other tribal affiliations such as Gurindji and Aranda who have inter-married with Warlpiri. There are eight skin groups for males and for females with no communal division. The school has an enrolment of 180 with an average attendance of 125 and teaches subjects from pre-school to post primary in both Warlpiri first language and English. The staff consists of nine white teachers, two Aboriginal teachers and five Aboriginal assistant teachers.

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Lajamanu CEC is a category 3 school.

Terms and conditions for this category can be found at 'Teaching in the Territory' website.

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Visit the 'Out Bush' section of the 'Katherine Region' pages of the Rivers Cluster site to learn more.

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