About the project
The Victorian Government is transforming local secondary education through the Lilydale District and Yarra Valley Education Plan.
Work on the plan began in 2017. Its vision is to provide every secondary student in these communities with the knowledge, capabilities and attributes they need to thrive throughout their lives.
In 2020, the plan grew from 3 to 6 local schools to meet the needs of a growing community. It will give each school access to more expertise and resources than ever before.
As part of this plan, we are significantly upgrading and modernising buildings at:
We consulted community members and stakeholders in the Lilydale and Upper Yarra area during July, August and September 2017 to collect data that would assist to develop the education plan. Community members and stakeholders were asked to identify what was working well and what could be improved in the education system in the area.
The feedback we received painted a clear picture of strengths to build upon, and a desire to improve opportunities for young people in the area.
In the 2017–18 State Budget, this project shared in $7 million planning funding.
This project has received an additional $20 million in the 2018–19 State Budget.
In 2020, schools in this Education Plan shared in an additional $12.677 million of funding.
Collaborative Indigenous Strategy
The Department of Education and Training acknowledges Victorian Traditional Owners and pays respect to their Elders past, present and emerging, and values the rich culture and history of the First Peoples of this land.
Throughout this report, the term Koorie is used to refer to both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Use of the terms Aboriginal, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Indigenous are retained in the names of programs and initiatives and, unless noted otherwise, are inclusive of all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
The 6 secondary schools involved in the Lilydale District and Yarra Valley Education Plan have come together to develop a Collaborative Indigenous Strategy, supporting the individual needs of local Koorie students, improving student knowledge, and targeting Aboriginal inclusion.
This is being done to achieve the vision of the state-wide Marrung Aboriginal Education Plan 2016–2026.
This commitment means students will experience a culturally inclusive education, in an environment where they feel safe to stand strong in their cultural identity. Aboriginal cultures and histories. will be celebrated and learnt by the whole school community. Students will have more opportunities to connect with their culture and communities, and more pathways to achieve their aspirations and needs.
The strategy will see Aboriginal culture and history not only celebrated but embedded in the six schools’ curriculum. Koorie students will feel a sense of connection, be strong in their cultural identity and fully engaged in secondary education to reach their own goals. Koorie student voices will be heard, and their learning needs tailored to. Partnerships with local Aboriginal communities will be developed, and strengthened relationships will offer students greater pathways, development, and transition opportunities.
The six schools have worked with the Department’s Koorie Teams and students to plan successful delivery of the Collaborative Indigenous Strategy. Each school has appointed a First Nations Advocate, who is a key driver of the strategy and a mentor for Koorie students.
In Term 1, 2021, each of the six schools facilitated a yarning circle with their Koorie students, the local Koorie Engagement Support Officers and First Nations Advocates. Work is underway to implement student feedback on what they wanted to see happening in their schools, as well as how they would like to connect with Aboriginal culture in the future. Yarning circles will now occur each term and aim to include a guest speaker for students to talk to and engage in cultural activities.
Yarra Ranges Tech School has established a Koorie Student Program, which began in Term 2, 2021. The bespoke program is being co-designed by local Koorie students, who will visit the Tech School five times a term. They will complete workshops to solve real life problems, combining Aboriginal cultural practices with current and emerging technologies. Since its inception, the program has seen great success with 45 students (roughly a third of local Koorie students) enrolled for the Term 2 program. The program will be repeated in Term 4, 2021 and over the next two years for more students.
Koorie students and their needs will remain at the heart of all current and future work.
Marrung is the Wemba Wemba word for the Murray Cypress pine tree, representing branches of education and knowledge. We thank the Wemba Wemba people for allowing the use of their language in the naming of this plan.
Marrung aims to ensure that all Koorie Victorians achieve their learning aspirations.
Marrung’s vision is for Victoria to be a state where the rich and thriving culture, knowledge and experience of our First Nations peoples are celebrated by all Victorians; where our universal service systems are inclusive, responsive and respectful of Koorie people at every stage of their learning and development journey; and where every Koorie person achieves their potential, succeeds in life, and feels strong in their cultural identity.
The Lilydale District and Yarra Valley Education Plan began in 2017 as the Lilydale and Upper Yarra Education Plan when three secondary schools – Lilydale Heights College, Lilydale High School and Upper Yarra Secondary College – came together to revitalise secondary education across their communities and improve school infrastructure. In 2020, the plan expanded to build on current and future needs of a growing community with Healesville High School, Mooroolbark College and Yarra Hills Secondary College joining to deliver a shared goal of seeing greater educational outcomes for their students.
You can access a designed version of this report.
This is one of several education plans we are involved in. To learn more about the new buildings, upgraded facilities or community consultations connected to others across the state, please visit the page.
Reviewed 15 November 2022