ERIC Number: ED390628
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Jul
Reference Count: N/A
Things Are Crook in the Bush: Report on a Needs Analysis Survey on a Selected Region, the Central Western Queensland.
The rural Australian recession resulting from lower commodity prices and poor weather conditions raised concerns about how people were coping in the bush. A survey was distributed to all grazing properties in 10 shires of central western Queensland. Of 1,050 surveys distributed, 223 were returned representing 284 families and 914 individuals. Results revealed that many families were not getting by and were in a state of distress, particularly regarding their future prospects. Approximately 65 percent of respondents were living off either savings, overdraft, Job Search Allowance, Household Support or any combination of these. Only a small number of respondents were receiving government support. (Eight percent are receiving Job Search Allowance, Household Support or both). The level of assistance currently being received was minimal, but respondents' requests for assistance were considerable. About half of respondents had school-age children on the property. Forty percent of children were educated at home through the School of Distance Education. The additional work and stress placed on families by drought conditions were eroding time and attention paid to supervising children with school work. About 30 percent of children were attending the nearest school, and a number of these families faced long distances and considerable expense to transport them to the school bus. Government transportation subsidies were inadequate. About 24 percent of children attended boarding school; half of these were facing withdrawal due to the expense. Recommendations for meeting rural needs are offered. Appendix contains the survey instrument; a list of types of available public assistance; and background information on the region's wool and beef production, rainfall, debt levels, and educational attainment. (SV)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Australia (Queensland); Education Economy Relationship; Recession
Note: In: Issues Affecting Rural Communities. Proceedings of an International Conference Held by the Rural Education Research and Development Centre (Townsville, Queensland, Australia, July 10-15, 1994); see RC 020 376.