A FORMER Nationals senator has been given the task of tackling barriers faced by country students as the nation's first regional education commissioner.
Fiona Nash's appointment was announced in Wodonga on Monday by Regional Education Minister and Nationals senator Bridget McKenzie.
It follows a review which recommended such a role.
We welcome the Hon Fiona Nash as Australia's first Regional Education Commissioner:— La Trobe University (@latrobe) December 6, 2021
'La Trobe looks forward to working constructively with Fiona to advance rural education pathways & attainment for young people in rural & regional communities'—@johnnodvchttps://t.co/eDMhy0D5kfpic.twitter.com/Kek5gxq3D0
Ms Nash, who has worked with Charles Sturt University since leaving parliament, will cover early childhood education to the tertiary sector.
She plans to liaise with state governments, oppositions and cross benchers.
"This is going to need to be a very bipartisan approach to make sure that we deliver the outcomes that we need to for rural, regional and remote people," Ms Nash said.
Wodonga Senior Secondary College principal Vern Hilditch lauded the move as being overdue.
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He cited the lack of broad exposure of country students to pathways and year 12 completion being 20 per cent lower in regional areas than capital cities as key issues.
Ms Nash will have an office based in a regional city which is yet to be announced.
Asked if Albury-Wodonga was in the running, Senator McKenzie said she would be accused of favouritism if the Twin Cities were chosen.
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