The Australian Educational Researcher

, Volume 46, Issue 2, pp 253–271 | Cite as

Factors affecting the development of school and Indigenous community engagement: A systematic review

  • Kevin LoweEmail author
  • Neil Harrison
  • Christine Tennent
  • John Guenther
  • Greg Vass
  • Nikki Moodie


School systems and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders have long acknowledged the levels of social, cultural and epistemic conflict that has historically existed between teachers and schools, and Aboriginal students, families and their local communities. This relationship is both symptomatic and causal of the broader and highly complex field of issues and policies found to underpin the fraught histories existing between many Aboriginal communities and schools. This systematic review of the research literature reports on findings and insights into the everyday environments of these interactions and the possibilities of Aboriginal communities being able to affect the establishment of genuine and productive interactions with schools. The review looks to focus on those factors seen to either enable or act as barriers to this process, and comment on their impact on Aboriginal communities, their students and schools’ capacity for purposeful engagement.


Australian Indigenous education Indigenous community and school engagement School partnerships Community participation School and community collaboration Indigenous parents Aboriginal education 



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Copyright information

© The Australian Association for Research in Education, Inc. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Macquarie UniversityMacquarie ParkAustralia
  2. 2.The University of SydneyCamperdownAustralia
  3. 3.Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary EducationBatchelorAustralia
  4. 4.Griffith UniversityBrisbaneAustralia
  5. 5.The University of MelbourneParkvilleAustralia

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