Key School Documents
Working At Ernabella
Ernabella is an Anangu Community on the APY Lands in the far north west of South Australia. (approx. 200km south of Uluru) Ernabella is set in a valley in the Musgrave Ranges south of Mt Woodroffe (the tallest mountain in South Australia) Kinship ties cover three groups within the Northern Territory, Western Australia and South Australia. These are the Pitjantjatjara, Ngaantatjarra and Yankunytjatjara peoples. Homelands, consisting of two or three families are serviced from Ernabella.
Ernabella has a local health clinic, police station, store, roadhouse, art centre, youth shed and community offices.
Ernabella is a growing community and the school has mirrored this growth. A significant factor for any Anangu community and school is the transient nature of the population. A current trend for Anangu families is to relocate to Adelaide. Although many families move, the average time for relocation is 6 months. Often the move for families schooling is a priority after housing, this can affect our attendance data as students remain on our system until enrolment in another site. The school works closely with The Walk Along Project Team in Adelaide to monitor and track Ernabella families and support their transition to other schools.
Despite this, there is a steady growth in the school population and this is expected to continue. Retaining enrolments of secondary students is a partnership priority, creating meaningful pathways for future employment. Significant resourcing including creative arts, Duke of Edinburgh Award and VET training at the TTC will continue to be a focus.
Over 90% of students at Ernabella are Anangu and their first language is Pitjantjatjara or Yankunytjatara as this is usually the language spoken at home. The students are often only introduced to English when they commence school. Another significant factor for Anangu communities is the transient nature of the population. There are regular movements of families between the 8 APY Lands Schools, mostly for the purpose of attending funerals (Sorry business). As a result, students may attend at a school for only a few weeks before returning to their home communities.