Older News  » Sorry Day and Reconciliation Week

Last updated 3:16 PM on 13 May 2014

Reconciliation week


Sorry Day and National Reconciliation Week

Sorry Day 26th May 2014 and Reconciliation Week 27 May 2014 to 3 June 2014

Sorry Day

National Sorry Day is an event held annually in Australia on 26 May. Held since 1998, the aim of National Sorry Day is to remember and acknowledge the mistreatment of Australia's Indigenous population. This year's theme will be 'Sorry, Still Living on Borrowed Time.'

National Reconciliation Week

May 27 is the day that the 1967 Referendum was passed. The referendum was a national vote where more than 90 per cent of Australians voted to change the Constitution to better recognise Indigenous people as full citizens of Australia. It also gave the Commonwealth Government the power to make laws on behalf of Aboriginal people.

June 3 marks the anniversary of the High Court of Australia's 1992 judgment in the celebrated Mabo case. This was a famous case where the court recognised the Native Title rights of Indigenous peoples, and overturned the myth that Australia was empty of people and that indigenous people did not own the land before European settlement in 1788.

Each year during Reconciliation Week people from across Australia get together to hold events to educate people about reconciliation, to celebrate Indigenous cultures and to protest about what is still left to be done.



Reconciliation literally means ‘re-establishing friendly relations' or ‘healing old wounds'. In practical terms, it's about acknowledging our cultural history and the devastating and complex relationship Indigenous Australians have had with colonial Australia, but ultimately learning from that past as a way of reshaping the present and making a better future for all Australians.

Reconciliation starts with a question, rather than an assumption about the past. With most racism stemming from a lack of awareness or understanding about another culture and its people; education is significant in the path to creating an Australia which is inclusive and respectful of its Indigenous peoples.

What can I do? 

The good news is there are lots of things - big and small - that you can do to contribute to reconciliation: 

1. Ask questions.If you don't know about something, ask someone! Indigenous Australians are more than happy to share their history.

2.Check out what's online:Reconciliation Australia, NAIDOC and ANTaR are examples of Indigenous organisations that have loads of info about reconciliation and Indigenous people.

3.Get involved: your school, university and most workplaces have events, or other ways for you to get involved in Reconciliation Week events. Participating in events is one of the best ways you can learn about the culture and history of Indigenous Australians.  

Reconciliation events at Albion Park High School

May 26th 10am to 1pm  National Reconciliation Week flag walk for school children.
The flag bearers will walk from Pioneer Park, down Addison Street to Little Park, Shellharbour Village where a formal ceremony will take place. A barbeque lunch and entertainment will then be provided at Little Park in Shellharbour Village. Flag bearers from Albion Park High School this year are Dru Marsden, Rideika Wright, Tye West and Unica Roberts.


Out of school activities

Monday 26th Aboriginal Education Consultative Group meeting - 4pm Kemblawarra Public School – open to all

Wednesday 28th May - 20 students (across Years 9-12) attending Wollongong University as participants in AIME – Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience.

School Based Activities

Science will be growing local native bush food and medicinal plants to be cultivated and distributed to families and staff. The plants will take a while to grow and develop so planting will take place in spring. Parents are invited to contact Scott Mercer or Mehdi Hassanpour if they would like one.

Art are producing and painting wooden animal cut outs of snakes, emus, kangaroos, crocodiles, turtles and fishes. Completed works of art will be displayed in the library during Reconciliation Week.

PD/H/PE a number of staff were trained in Indigenous Traditional games and the PD/H/PE faculty will incorporate indigenous games across the curriculum in years 7-10 this week.

Home Economics The TAS department will be coordinating the celebration of Reconciliation Week by welcoming visitors, parents and students to sample Aboriginal tucker cooked on the BBQ on Tuesday 27th of May. A selection of Kangaroo steak and sausages will be available for taste testing. Aboriginal tucker will be served outside the Administration block on the lawn area after the Sorry Day assembly.

Support for Reconciliation Week will be looking at stories of the Aboriginal Dreaming. These lessons will include nationally known stories such as the Rainbow Serpent and local stories like the Origins of the Five Islands. The staff and students are excited to investigate this aspect of Indigenous Culture.

English Year 8 students are completing an Aboriginal Experience Unit – the two best speeches will be presented at the Sorry Day assembly on Friday 30th May.

HSIE will be holding a Reconciliation Forum in Period 5 on Friday 30th May. About 10 students from each year will participate. The host will be Tegan Hatfield, during period 4 the students will split into small groups and discuss indigenous issues with the provision of media articles etc as a starting point. Students will then come together into the larger group and formulate a debate topic. In Period 5 students will participate in a debate with the remainder becoming audience. Relevant staff and community members are to be invited with the culmination being an afternoon tea for all participants.

Library  Mrs Hoole, the librarian, will construct an interactive display including book and artifacts relating to our Indigenous Australians.

Music the Albion Park High School vocal ensemble will perform Brave by Sara Bareilles at the Sorry Day assembly on 27/5/2014 under the tuition of Rebecca Keen .

Tuesday the 27th of May School Aboriginal Leadership team to oversee the Sorry Day assembly period 4. This will not only address the issues around Sorry Day but will showcase some of the activities undertaken by students during the week. The assembly will culminate in a BBQ outside the Administration block hosted by Life Technology to sample some Aboriginal Tucker with all parents welcome to attend both assembly and the BBQ.

Please feel free to contact Mrs Dal Santo the Chair of the Aboriginal Leadership Team with any enquiries on 0437979652