Kiama Public School is committed to improving the educational outcomes and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students. We welcome Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander family members, parents and community members in our school, working towards collaborative decision making with Aboriginal peoples to ensure our students excel and achieve in every aspect of their education.
Our school values the past, present and ongoing contributions of Aboriginal peoples to our local area and strives to increase the knowledge and understanding of the histories, cultures and experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Peoples of Australia. We incorporate the cultural contexts, values and practices of our local Aboriginal community in our school through incursions with local elders and cultural immersion programs for our Aboriginal students.
We recognise the importance of working together to enrich all learners understanding and appreciation of Aboriginal culture as the oldest living culture on Earth. Students explore Aboriginal perspectives and ways of being, knowing, thinking and doing across all Key Learning Areas. In doing so, students develop understanding of and respect for the special connection Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have to Country and Place, the unique belief systems, kinship structures and spirituality.
In the Australian Curriculum, students develop intercultural understanding as they learn to value their own cultures, languages and beliefs, and those of others. They come to understand how personal, group and national identities are shaped, and the variable and changing nature of culture. The capability involves students in learning about and engaging with diverse cultures in ways that recognise commonalities and differences, create connections with others and cultivate mutual respect.
Intercultural understanding is an essential part of living with others in the diverse world of the twenty-first century. It assists young people to become responsible local and global citizens, equipped through their education for living and working together in an interconnected world.
As educators, it is our role to educate against racist attitudes at the same time as we provide sanctions against racist behaviours.
One of our teachers has recently completed training as the ARCO at Kiama Public School. Her role includes:
1. Mediator Role: attempting an informal resolution when a complaint is received
2. Procedural Role: assist the complainant in writing a complaint if the informal resolution is not appropriate and the complainant wishes to address the issue formally
3. Educational Role: assist in the promotion of ant-racism education across the school and ensure that parents, students and staff are aware of the Anti-Racism Policy
4. Monitoring Role: assisting the principal in keeping track of suggestions, complaints and allegations concerning racism.
“Ideologies separate us. Dreams and anguish bring us together.” – Eugene Ionesco
Kiama Public School regularly consults the local Aboriginal Education Consultative Group (AECG) to continue to build the capacity of our school and staff to deliver meaningful Aboriginal education to our students. Our Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students are actively involved in:
- Sorry day ceremonies
- National Aborigines Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week celebrations
- Reconciliation Week activities
- School incursions and excursions.