Up to 100 scholarships will be offered to primary and secondary school-aged children and young people in care, in a new, innovative partnership between the State Government and Catholic Education South Australia.
The Catholic Schools Scholarship Program will see scholarship recipients receive full tuition, uniforms, textbooks, excursion and extracurricular activities, continuing each year until the child or young person completes their schooling.
The scholarship program, funded by Catholic Education South Australia, will be offered to children and young people in both metropolitan and regional SA, specifically new students into the Catholic education system.
Minister for Child Protection Rachel Sanderson said she was thrilled to partner with Catholic Education South Australia to further support children and young people in care.
“The State Government’s partnership with Catholic Education South Australia aims to provide additional support to children and young people in care and their families, recognising that a good education is a fantastic foundation for life and all the possibilities that lie ahead,” said Minister Sanderson.
“Education empowers and we know a good education is the best foundation for future prospects and all the possibilities that lie ahead.
“I want our children and young people in care to believe they have the capacity to achieve anything in life – and these scholarships will go some way in helping them do just that.
“South Australia has a world-class public school system, however some children and young people in care would really benefit from this scholarship program, for example those with special interests or needs.
“I would really like to thank Catholic Education South Australia for providing education opportunities for our most vulnerable children and young people – their support is invaluable.”
The scholarship program will start this term, with Department for Child Protection caseworkers working with carers to identify children and young people who would benefit from the program.
Children and young people will be matched with schools that can best meet their specific needs or interests, including those who may require disability and developmental supports.
Catholic Education South Australia Assistant Director Bruno Vieceli said CESA was pleased to partner with the State Government on a new scholarship program for children and young people in care.
“Providing support for vulnerable people in our community is an important part of Catholic social teaching and the mission of the Catholic Education,” said Mr Vieceli.
“We know that a quality education is the best foundation a young person can get in life, enhancing their opportunities for a thriving and productive future.”
DCP Chief Executive Cathy Taylor said the collaboration reflected the department’s commitment to ensure that all children and young people in care are given every opportunity to thrive and reach their potential.
“Education can have such a positive impact on a young person’s confidence and self-esteem, and can give them a real springboard into adulthood, “ said Ms Taylor.
“We are very pleased to be working together with Catholic schools in South Australia to provide another education pathway for children and young people in care.”
Improving opportunities for children and young people to access education and development activities is a key priority of the Liberal Government’s Safe and Well: Supporting families, protecting children strategy.
Carers who would like to find out more about the scholarships and how to apply, should visit our education support for children in care page.