Helping Indigenous students make a transition

28 May 2015:

MITS designA school to help students from remote Indigenous communities transition to school and life in Melbourne is set to open its doors in Richmond in 2016.

The Melbourne Indigenous Transition School (MITS) is the brain child of Associate Professor Liz Tudor (Chairperson of the MITS board), former headmaster of Trinity Grammar School Kew, Rick Tudor, and their son Ed, who is the MITS Executive Director.

Each year 20 boys and girls will attend Year 7 equivalent at MITS, getting used to life in Melbourne, the study loads and expectations, and each student will aim to progress to a scholarship position at MITS’s Melbourne Partner Schools the following year.

The plan is to see 200 students through the school in its first 10 years. The school will create pathways for the students to increase their prospects of successful transition into and progress through their partner school. MITS will help build partnerships and cultural and family connections between the students and their new schools.

2013 Menzies scholar in law, David Heaton, is on the board of MITS and maintains his strong involvement with the project despite his study commitments at Oxford.

David said ‘MITS is an extremely exciting project and something that I am confident will make a real difference to the lives of its students.

‘The model is unique, which presented early challenges, but has Rick and Liz and other experienced educators behind it. I’m proud and lucky to have been involved with MITS, and it’s been fantastic to see it gain critical momentum since last October under Ed’s stewardship.’

Through the generosity of many supporters and a Commonwealth grant, MITS has already raised over $2.75 million to complete construction of the residential transition school in Richmond, ready to open in February 2016.

Key supporters of the project attended the official ground breaking last week, with the Hon Josh Frydenberg, Federal Member for Kooyong and Assistant Treasurer, doing the honours.