Reconciliation in our Primary Schools

Essay by marvouta_1 August 2009

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Reconciliation is a method that includes the reconstruction of relations, both individually and collectively. It is not a step that usually demands "being good to each other" but a long-term system that is relied on the requirements and interests of both groups. In order to promote reconciliation, each year Australia celebrates the National Reconciliation Week (NRW) which aims to give people around Australia, both Indigenous and Non-Indigenous, some time to "reflect on achievements so far and on what must still be done to achieve reconciliation" (Reconciliation Australia, 2008). Moreover, education is widely recognised as the key to Reconciliation as it helps to satisfy lots of misconceptions about certain issues and "eradicate all the conflicts" (Karnes, 2002) which occur in both, schools and the social environment, therefore, teachers must show a very powerful and significant role in facilitating Reconciliation in their classrooms and the schools to which they are appointed.

NRW, which was first celebrated in 1996, offers people across Australia the opportunity of reconciliation, to learn about the culture and history of Indigenous Australians and explore new and better ways of meeting challenges in our communities. It lies between two very significant dates in the history of Indigenous Australians; the 27th of May, which is the anniversary of the 1967 referendum where 90% of Australians voted to remove clauses in the Australian Constitution which discriminated against Indigenous Australians, and the 3rd of June, which is the date the High Court handed down its judgements on the "Mabo" case (Reconciliation Australia, 2008). Each year, NRW has a different theme and 2008's theme is "Reconciliation: it's all our story" due to the new Australian Government's intention to make a formal apology to the stolen generation, their families and communities and those who were affected by the Australian...