Closing the Gap - Sporting Chance Program

Closing the Gap - Sporting Chance Program

Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations

Key Elements

The objective of the Sporting Chance Program is to encourage positive educational outcomes for Indigenous students using sport and recreation as the vehicle to improve student participation and engagement in schooling.

The Australian Government contribution of $10.0 million over four years will support the expansion of the Sporting Chance Program to improve the education, life skills and employment prospects of some 1400 Indigenous students across Australia.

The Government will contribute funds to:

  • establish around 10 new school-based sports academies across Australia, with a particular focus on improving the participation and engagement of girls in schooling; and
  • the Former Origin Greats (FOGS) QLD to establish school-based academies with a focus on rugby league.

The measure relates directly to the Closing the Gap targets, specifically the target of at least halving the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous students in the attainment of Year 12, or vocational equivalent, by 2020.


The Sporting Chance Program was initially funded as part of the 2006-07 Budget. In 2009 some 3000 students will be supported by school-based academies under the Program, with the majority of academies catering expressly for students from regional and remote areas. The Program targets communities experiencing high levels of social disadvantage.

The Program is having a direct impact on school engagement and attendance of students participating in it.

Funding partners, including state governments and corporate Australia, continue to provide ongoing support. The funding partnership on which the academy model is based (leveraging funds from partners) offers an effective approach to funding in a sustainable manner.

Providers for the additional academies funded under this measure will be selected through an application process.


The expansion will commence 1 January 2010.

Total Government Funding

$10.0 million over four years.

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