Under the program 113 scholarships were provided last year by Catholic schools, exceeding expectations. The additional scholarships will bring the total number of scholarships available to 200.
The first students have already started attending their chosen school. Funded by CESA, the scholarships cover the full costs of tuition, uniforms, textbooks, excursion and extracurricular activities, continuing each year until the student completes their schooling.
Minister for Child Protection Rachel Sanderson said the Government’s partnership with CESA was a practical way to make “real differences in the lives of our most vulnerable children and young people”.
“I’m thrilled we have had such a quick and successful uptake of our new Catholic Schools Scholarship Program and that through our innovative partnership with Catholic Education, we’re now able to offer another 100 scholarships to children and young people in care,” she said.
“There is no doubt completing secondary schooling opens up pathways to an array of career options and further study and these scholarships are supporting many of our children and young people in care achieve their dreams and aspirations.
“I commend and thank CESA for this unique partnership with the Marshall Liberal Government that’s providing invaluable education opportunities for children and young people in care.”
CESA director Dr Neil McGoran said 50 schools across the state had already welcomed students.
“The response from the children and young people who have taken up scholarships is overwhelmingly positive and a great example of mission in action,” said Dr McGoran.
“With the average annual fee across Diocesan primary, secondary and R-12 schools at about $4000, the 100 scholarships will provide substantial assistance to children and young people in care.
“We know that a quality education can set a young person up for life. Our aim is to remove any financial barriers so that young people in care have the opportunity to attend Catholic schools and thrive in a positive learning environment.”
Among the schools participating in the program is city-based all-girls school St Aloysius College.
Principal Paddy McEvoy said SAC currently had four children in early year levels on the scholarships.
“We are very happy to be involved,” she said.
“It’s a great initiative.”
The scholarship program started in Term 2 2020. Department for Child Protection caseworkers work with carers to identify children and young people who would benefit from the program.
The program is being offered to children and young people in both metropolitan and regional SA, specifically students new to the Catholic education system.
Carers who would like to find out more about the scholarships and how to apply, should visit www.childprotection.sa.gov.au/carers/how-dcp-works/education-support-for-children-in-care.