Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP)
Saint Ignatius' College Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP)
Reconciliation in Australia − the bringing together of Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders and other Australians − has gained momentum in recent decades. Australians began to take decisive action in the 1960s about creating a more unified and respectful relationship between the Indigenous and non-Indigenous populations. The Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody (1987−1991) facilitated the council that established Reconciliation Australia.
Reconciliation Australia launched its Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) program to provide organisations with a framework to improve relationships and respect between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and other Australians.
Saint Ignatius’ College has established reconciliation working parties (IEY, Junior School, and Senior School) to develop our commitment to reconciliation. Following Reconciliation Australia’s guidelines, these working parties consisting of staff, along with input from parents and students, and with feedback from Kaurna Elder Uncle Ivan, are working on our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).
Reconciliation is the responsibility of everyone, and our staff seek to ensure that our students and the College community recognise and respect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and acknowledge past injustices and ongoing inequalities experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples since colonisation, and are committed to working towards a more equal and respectful future.
The RAPs provide the College with a structured approach to supporting reconciliation and ensuring our College community works towards becoming a more just, equitable, and ethical organisation. RAPs provide practical actions to drive the College’s contribution to reconciliation.
RAPs develop our appreciation of historical acceptance, race relations, equality and equity, institutional integrity, and unity. They specify steps in developing respectful and meaningful relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.
Our first RAP focuses on developing relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stakeholders, outlining our vision for reconciliation, exploring our sphere of influence, and committing to specific actions.
Over the next year, by engaging with staff, stakeholders, and the community, the working party will review the actions and update the RAP so that our actions work more effectively towards achieving our vision, strengthening our relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, and developing strategies that empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.
Karen Mundine, Chief Executive Officer, Reconciliation Australia, reminds us that: “Reconciliation isn’t a single moment or place in time. It’s lots of small, consistent steps, some big strides, and sometimes unfortunate backwards steps.”
The College RAP can be viewed HERE.
Mr Chris Toome
Aboriginal Education Coordinator