Media Release

Australia-Malaysia Institute: Strengthening Australia's Ties with Malaysia

18 August 2009

The Advisory Board of the Australia-Malaysia Institute (AMI) recognised the achievements of six Victorian Schools that participated in the Australia-Malaysia sister school pilot program at an Australia-Malaysia Alumni reception at The Hotel Windsor in Melbourne on the evening of Monday 10 August.

At the reception AMI Advisory Board Chair Professor Lance Twomey AO presented each school with a contribution of $2000 in appreciation of their work in making the pilot project a success.

The Sister School Program began with the twinning of six schools in Victoria with six schools in Malaysia in 2008. The schools have been active in building their relationships through regular student communications via email, blogs and wikis and cooperation in the development of joint curriculum in the fields of English, Maths, the Arts, Science and Languages. The program included two way teacher exchanges and some student exchanges.

The AMI will work together with the Victorian Department of Education and Early Childhood Development to expand the sister school program to a further six schools in Victoria and six in Malaysia.

On Tuesday 11 August the AMI Advisory met with representatives of Malaysian student organisations to discuss their experiences as international students in Australia and possible collaboration in future projects.

The Advisory Board also considered a number of high quality proposals for projects in the fields of public policy, education, science, health, media and sport that will further people-to people links and engagement between Australia and Malaysian institutions and organisations.

The Australia-Malaysia Institute, established by the Australian Government in 2005 aims to strengthen the Australia-Malaysia relationship through supporting a broad range of projects that enhance contact and exchange between the two countries and their peoples. Current Board Members are Professor Lance Twomey AO, Mr Christian Bennett, Ms Geraldine Doogue AO, Ms Rechelle Hawkes OAM, Dr Alia Imtoual, Ms Kathe Kirby and Professor Anthony Milner AM.

Further details of the Institute's program of activities can be found at the Australia-Malysia Institute website.

Media Enquiries: DFAT Media Liaison - 02 6261 1555