National Farmers' Federation

Regional, rural and remote students to benefit from dedicated Education Commissioner

The National Farmers Federation congratulates Fiona Nash on her appointment as Australia’s first Regional Education Commissioner.

The role, which will oversee implementation of recommendations from the National Regional, Rural and Remote Tertiary Education Strategy (the Napthine Review) has the goal of reducing the disparity in educational outcomes between city and country students.

President of the National Farmers Federation, Fiona Simson said the new position would ensure regional and remote education was championed.

“By having a Commissioner committed to regional Australia, we can be safe in the knowledge that students – both in the bush and in our regional and remote towns – are being advocated for,” Ms Simson said.

“It is essential that students living and learning in the country are given every opportunity to succeed and be on a par with their city peers.

“That starts with having a dedicated voice advocating the educational needs of our students,” Ms Simson said.

Ms Nash will initially serve a three-year term as Regional Education Commissioner and will report annually on the progress of the recommendations of the Napthine review. As part of her role, Ms Nash will also provide advice on regional education policy issues.

“Ms Nash comes with an impressive resume, currently including a four-year tenure as Strategic Advisor, Regional Engagement and Government Relations at Charles Sturt University. She was also a Director of the NSW Skills Board in 2021,” Ms Simson said.

“Ms Nash is already on the record saying she will work with regional and remote communities to best understand the educational needs of their students. I welcome this direct line of communication.

“Liaising with the communities experiencing these disparities, first-hand, is the best way to better understand what is leading to issues such as a reduced level of education participation and attainment.

“It is imperative that regional Australia is home to world class education. The NFF’s 2030 Roadmap outlines the significance of attracting and retaining people to regional areas as a key pillar to helping agriculture achieve its goal of becoming a $100 billion industry,” Ms Simson said.

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