Hard work pays off for language ladies

Bundiyarra-Irra Wangga Language Centre workers, Edie Maher and Godfrey Simpson (left) and Rosie Sitorus (right), were on hand to congratulate the newest graduate teachers, Nadine Taylor and Leeann Merritt from Bundiyarra, and Natasha Ryan from Beachlands Primary School. Below: Their achievement called for a celebration with a yummy cake back at Bundiyarra!

Bundiyarra-Irra Wangga Language Centre workers, Edie Maher and Godfrey Simpson (left) and Rosie Sitorus (right), were on hand to congratulate the newest graduate teachers, Nadine Taylor and Leeann Merritt from Bundiyarra, and Natasha Ryan from Beachlands Primary School. Below: Their achievement called for a celebration with a yummy cake back at Bundiyarra!

Three local Aboriginal ladies have plenty to celebrate after graduating as qualified language teachers this month.

They were presented with their Aboriginal Languages Teacher Training qualifications at a graduation ceremony in Perth and the language centre team went along to support them and share their joy.

The three ladies started their language training in 2014 with block releases in Perth and Broome twice a year. The trainees had to be associated with a school, with Natasha already at Beachlands Primary School, and the language centre was able to negotiate positions for Nadine and Leeann at Waggrakine Primary School and Beachlands/ Meekawaya respectively.

Language Centre Coordinator, Jenny Kniveton-Gregory, said the graduates will complete a year on probation, after which they have the position of ‘Limited Authority to Teach’.

“This means they can’t yet have a classroom to themselves, but they can work within the school as an employee,” she said.

“It’s a great achievement for them all having graduated, as they all have busy lives and lots of other commitments, but they’ve stuck it out, and now we’re lucky in this region as we get three more qualified language teachers!

“Most if not all language teachers in the region started out in this program.

“It was a happy graduation if a bit emotional, as everyone was so overwhelmed by all their achievements and so proud of how far they’ve come,” said Jenny.

Bundiyarra CEO, Marchelle Retallack, congratulated the ladies.

“Three years ago Leeann sat behind a hidden desk and said she was only a transcriber. It just shows that selfdetermination, good mentoring, and real opportunity does make a difference to people’s lives,” she said.

“Bundiyarra and the board is proud of them all.”

Bundiyarra-Irra Wangga Language Centre staff, Jenny Kniveton-Gregory, Edie Maher, Rosie Sitorus and Godfrey Simpson thank Adrian Huber, (left) from Wrays, an intellectual property law firm that has kindly done some pro bono work for the language centre. Language centre Coordinator, Jenny Kniveton-Gregory said Wrays has helped the centre get all its agreements and contracts up to scratch for copyright. “They are helping us make sure all our practices protect the IP of Bundiyarra and the individuals and communities we work with,” she said.

Bundiyarra-Irra Wangga Language Centre staff, Jenny Kniveton-Gregory, Edie Maher, Rosie Sitorus and Godfrey Simpson thank Adrian Huber, (left) from Wrays, an intellectual property law firm that has kindly done some pro bono work for the language centre.

Language centre Coordinator, Jenny Kniveton-Gregory said Wrays has helped the centre get all its agreements and contracts up to scratch for copyright.

“They are helping us make sure all our practices protect the IP of Bundiyarra and the individuals and communities we work with,” she said.