Tony Abbott will make his first public venture into a remote Aboriginal school today as special envoy on indigenous affairs, visiting the new Dawurr boarding quarters at Nhulunbuy High School in northeastern Arnhem Land.

Mr Abbott announced a priority in his role would be examining how to improve remote indigenous school attendance rates, although today’s brief visit will raise eyebrows for having failed to engage with key local figures such as Gumatj clan leader Galarrwuy Yunupingu.

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