Delroy Girls' Academy program manager and Dubbo College graduate Emily Nettle has praised the Girls' Academy program for Indigenous students saying it has gone from strength to strength.
The program was implemented in 2017, has the aim of boosting the attendance and engagement of Aboriginal students, and to support them towards achieving their HSC.
Mrs Nettle said the idea of the program aims to increase the girls' confidence and self-esteem, and thereby lift their academic performance, as well as help them to recognise they can have highly successful future careers.
Mrs Nettle said Delroy has four staff in the program and the girls usually come to their room during their daily breaks.
"Once a term we also have contact time with each year group where we focus on a range of goals including health and well-being, careers, basic living skills and self-esteem," Mrs Nettle said.
Dubbo College Delroy Campus Year 10 students, Isabella Fernando and Jesse Trindall, said they believe their access to the Girls' Academy program has been instrumental in their success at school, as well as lifting their aspirations for the future.
Both 15-year-olds have been Dubbo College students since Year 7, and are part of the Girls' Academy program for Indigenous students.
Jesse and Isabella both have serious goals in mind for their future careers and will move to Senior Campus next year to begin the road towards their Higher School Certificate, and then tertiary study.
The pair spoke out about the importance of feeling comfortable in your schooling environment.
"I think it's really important to feel comfortable in the school environment and the Girls' Academy, for me, is a place where I feel happy to be myself," Isabella said. "There is an unbelievable amount of support from the staff and the other members of the academy, and I know I can get help with my school work and my well-being."
Isabella's comments were echoed by fellow student Jesse, who said the academy provided a warm environment.
"They don't just help me at school, they provide support outside of school," Jesse said.
I think it's really important to feel comfortable in the school environment and the Girls' Academy is a place where I feel happy to be myself.Isabella Fernando