SEDA Sports Development Program Darwin

Crnr Lakeside Drive & Dripstone Road, Brinkin NT 0810

Established in 2013, the SEDA Sports Development Program Darwin (SEDA SDP Darwin) is a non-school senior secondary education provider. It is part of the SEDA group which has about 1600 students across three states. It is delivered in partnership with the Northern Territory Department of Education, Casuarina Senior College, Charles Darwin University and major sporting organisations. The program enables young people to combine their passion for sport with their studies in order to achieve educational outcomes that cannot be taught in a normal school environment. Enrolment of students (aged 16-18) requires a Year 10 pass and an interest in sports and recreation industry but is not dependant on sporting skill. SEDA SDP Darwin offers a senior secondary program that incorporates vocational education and training (VET) in Sport and Recreation. In 2013, 22 students (20 male, 2 female) are enrolled in the Year 11-12 program. In 2014, SEDA SDP Darwin will expand to include Year 10.

How this program works

SEDA SDP Darwin offers Year 11 and 12 students the opportunity to complete their education within the Sport and Recreation industry. The emphasis is on applied (real life) learning situations in collaboration with local sports organisations including the Northern Territory Thunder and AFL NT; Adelaide United F.C. and Football Federation NT; Cricket Australia and Northern Territory Cricket; and Netball Northern Territory. SEDA SDP Darwin has partnerships with local councils and sports clubs to use their venues for the program. The main location is the Pirates Rugby Club at the Casuarina Campus of Charles Darwin University where students are in a single class with one teacher. This enable students to develop solid meaningful relationships with a positive mentor and a strong sense of belonging. In addition, students collaborate with sporting organisation staff, players, coaches, administrators, operations and marketing managers. Students are provided with a sport-style uniform including the logo of one of the sports organisations and recognised as ambassadors for SEDA and their sport.

The 2-year full-time program uses an integrated curriculum that leads to completion of the Northern Territory Certificate of Education and Training (NTCET, Year 11-12), Certificate II, III and/or IV in Sport and Recreation as well as Level 2 First Aid, Level 1-2 Coaching Accreditations and Umpiring / Refereeing Certification. Students are enrolled into different year levels based on age and previous level of education. A typical weekly timetable consists of 2½-3½ days of classes, 1 day industry placement, and time for primary school clinics, private study and “out of hours? work requirements to meet requests from sporting associations/organisations. Pathways upon completion include employment in the sports and recreation industry, further vocational study and, for those who completed the Certificate IV, university study. SEDA maintains contact with graduates to offer support so that they feel encouraged to pursue a positive career pathway.


Positive outcomes: indicating the success of this program in its first year of operation, include high attendance rates, improved confidence and commitment by students; strong partnerships with high profile sporting organisations; and contribution to the community through primary school clinics and volunteer work.

Credentialed attainment: In 2013, 7 students completed Year 11 and 15 students completed Year 12 for the NTCET. In addition, all year 11 student achieved a Cert II in for VET in Sport and Recreation, 14 Year students achieved Cert II and 1 Year 12 student completed Cert IV. In addition, 7 students completed an online tertiary enabling program for Charles Darwin University.

Individual student achievements: One student obtained a part-time job at the primary school where he had helped deliver sports clinics.

Engagement and participation in learning: average attendance is 89%, adjusted to 99% for approved absences; only 1 student (0.5%) has withdrawn from the program. This contrasts to their disengagement with prior schooling which led to non-attendance and/or minimal work completion (2013). A student comments School was all right but it wasn’t my thing so SEDA being sports and all really interested me, I really want to be there, just get up in the morning and enjoy school. A parent comments on students gaining public speaking skills from the primary school clinics and from talking with people who are fairly high up in the football industry and the cricket and soccer industry.

Destinations and pathways: The program started in 2013 so does not have graduates yet. Parents comment that He still wants to be a PE teacher and I think he’s got the confidence now to pursue that more seriously and It has broadened her horizons on different things that you can do in the world.

Health and well-being: Students comment that having one class provides a better bond with peers and Having the one teacher is so much more comfortable. Students comment their confidence has improved, they are happier and Being based at the Uni, it kind of forces you to grow up a bit more.

Civic/community participation: Running sports clinics at primary schools, working with little kids was really good. As part of their volunteer work students take part in organising and running events in schools, assisting with administration in local clubs and supporting community sport and recreation activities.

Engagement with families: A parent comments that The teacher knows your child, so if you have any concerns you can speak to that teacher.

Productive partnerships: Prestigious national and state sporting organisations and sports clubs partner with SEDA SDP Darwin to co-brand the program, provide staff support, access to high profile venues, and provide direct access to the sports industry.

Wider influence: SEDA SDP Darwin is part of the SEDA organisation which has grown from 1 teacher in 2007 to 89 teachers and 1600 students in 2013 across 3 states.

Why this program is successful

The SEDA organisation identifies as vital ingredients that students learn by doing, are connected to real world experiences and that the program captures thei Add Mediar passion. Having the same teacher in one class is viewed as helpful by the organisation as well as by students and parents. The primary school clinics and the links with the university and with prestigious sporting organisations are also important factors. The program enables students to create networks with many major sporting bodies in Northern Territory which can offer opportunities for future employment opportunities.

Sources of information

SEDA (2013) Sport Development Program. NT Student Handbook. SEDA: Darwin

SEDA (2013) NT Program guide. Year 11 & 12 students. SEDA: Hawthorn East

SEDA (2013) Program website

Please note, where possible and appropriate, we have adopted the language and terminology used by the program sources (italic fonts) and referred to the most recent publicly available information.

This vignette was developed in 2013 by The Victoria Institute for Education, Diversity and Lifelong Learning (part of the Australian Government’s Collaborative Research Network) for the project Putting the jigsaw together: innovative learning engagement programs in Australia and supported by the Ian Potter Foundation.

Download SEDA Sports Development Program Darwin [PDF]