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Reconciliation Action Plan 2019: Launch Day Assembly


1 June 2018

Reconciliation Action Plan 2019: Launch Day Assembly

Reconciliation Action Plan 2019: Launch Day Assembly

Today Ms Alison McCarthy and our Yalari students led the school in our Reconciliation assembly. There were many powerful and honest stories shared.

Year 12 student Grace Haslett reflected that Waverley Stanley, the Founding Director of Yalari, often talks about the students on Yalari scholarships as being the bridges between cultures.

"As students we have the role of being those who can understand both the indigenous and non-indigenous parts of our society. And with this knowledge and understanding we have the responsibility to work towards bringing people together and to help make create positive changes in the future. Being this bridge is the very spirit of Reconciliation. We are well placed to understand these 2 worlds and hope that this can be used to continue our positive path of reconciliation.”

On TPC we currently have 11 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students from Adelaide and across Australia. Aboriginal Australians have been a part of our Scotch heritage since its very beginning.

Year 12 Grace Miller noted as part of her presentation that, “recently we have found that Fredrick Prentice, a member of the stolen generation and adopted into a white family, was a boarder at Kyre, the original school Scotch partnered with in its establishment.”

She also shared that for all our indigenous students, “one of our Reconciliation actions is to uncover, appreciate and celebrate our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander heritage. Learn from it and to move forward to a positive future together.”

The challenge to learn about aboriginal history is not just for our indigenous students and to help all students understand part of the aboriginal story we had as our guest speaker Mandy Brown (’72) share her family story covering their Stolen Generation experiences and the resilience and strength that has emerged not just as survivors but as individuals who were now able to feel complete in their identity. Mandy works as an Arts & Cultural Facilitator at Country Arts SA and is a Board Member at Reconciliation SA. She is also an Elder of the Peramangk and Ngarrindjeri nations. It was a powerful personal story which demonstrated that no part of the Australian community has been untouched by the experiences of the Stolen Generation.  

Hudson Laycock and Esther Boles presented their perspective on Reconciliation and how they see it working at Scotch.

The Yalari kids in our school are genuinely thrown in the deep end," observed Esther, "but it’s the ones who adapt and quickly learn to swim who are the ones who have created change and driven the progression in society. Honestly, trust me when I say we are lucky to be in a community like Scotch. Along with past students and staff we have helped create this environment. An environment that no matter what... Scotch loves you. Not everywhere has this and or feels like this… and a lot of the world a few steps behind. This makes a place like Scotch all the more valuable. So, I now encourage you to embrace the message behind Reconciliation. Get behind each other. Look after your mate beside you and remember... Scotch doesn’t care what you are... Scotch cares about who you are.”

Ms McCarthy concluded the assembly by outlining our approach to developing our Reconciliation plan over the next year. We are creating our RAP through Reconciliation Australia and specifically NARRAGUNNAWALI.  The process focusses upon relationships, Respect and opportunities specifically when we are in the classroom, around the school and within the wider community. Students were then dismissed to work in House groups to start our Reconciliation Action Plan.

This link was used to help launch our formal planning process involving students for RAP 2019. I encourage you to ask your students about their day today. 

I thought it a fantastic celebration in the spirit of reconciliation and the great journey I know we will have over the next 12 months! Thanks to all involved in today’s assembly.


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