As Australians, we pride ourselves on our values of fairness and equality, but our founding document, the Australian Constitution does not recognise the unique contribution that our First Peoples have made to our nation.
As our country grows and changes over time, our laws and foundations need to shift a little to develop with us. That’s why recognising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in our Constitution is seen as an important next step in the evolution of our nation.
With histories and cultures dating back more than 60,000 years, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have contributed something very unique to Australia, something that all Australians should be proud of.
Tweed River High School has played an important part in the development of a new school kit about recognition.
Designed in consultation with Aboriginal Studies teacher, Ms. Janet Ryan and her students, the school kit provides a range of tools, resources and activities to promote discussion of the Constitution and recognition in classrooms.
Ms. Ryan said the resource had provided the students with the information to have an active and relevant debate about this national issue.
“It is fundamental that today’s students can have an educated and informed say about Australia’s future, so teachers and students should take the opportunity to explore this important topic.”
If we have a national referendum about constitutional recognition, it will be essential that young people, voting for the first time, have the information to make an informed choice.
Students and teachers are encouraged to get involved and talk about recognition at school and at home—it’s only through these conversations that we’ll build an understanding of why recognition is important for all Australians.
The resource, “Recognising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the Constitution: School Learning Guide,” is aimed at secondary students in years 10 to 12 and fits within the new Australian Curriculum.
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