Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion, says reports from Labor that the Indigenous Tutorial Assistance Scheme (ITAS) has been abolished are absolutely wrong.
“It is just more scaremongering from a policy-bereft Opposition,” Minister Scullion said.
“I am disappointed that the Australian Indigenous Doctors Association (AIDA) has caused unnecessary anxiety among Indigenous students by promoting Labor’s misleading statement. I am not aware of AIDA contacting my office to find out about ITAS to get the facts.
“I call on Labor and AIDA to correct the record on this matter.”
The Australian Government has streamlined about 150 Indigenous programmes and activities into five broad-based programmes under the $4.8 billion Indigenous Advancement Strategy (IAS), announced by Minister Scullion as part of the May Budget.
“ITAS is one of the programmes now covered by the new flexible arrangements available through the IAS,” Minister Scullion said.
“The IAS will ensure that funding is delivered to organisations that focus on the Government’s priority areas of getting children to school, adults into work and making communities safer.
“My department wrote to universities advising them that they will be able to apply for funding through the round to continue their current activities in 2015, including their tutorial support activities, but will also be able to apply for funding to support more holistic/tailored student support activities which will contribute to the achievement of outcomes in the priority areas, should they choose to do so.
“The funding round will also provide an opportunity to seek funding for tutorial support activities which are more flexible than the current ITAS program and with a reduced administrative burden.
“Far from abolishing ITAS, we’re going to get everyone involved to make the service even better.”
Applications for funding are now open. The Guidelines are available at http://www.dpmc.gov.au/indigenous_affairs/
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2014-09-11 SCULLION MR – ITAS as part of IAS.pdf