Har­mony Day set to ’close the gap’

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS -

TO CEL­E­BRATE Har­mony Day and Clos­ing the Gap Day, Moss­man State High School is invit­ing all mem­bers of the Kuku Yalanji peo­ple to at­tend the un­veil­ing of an ac­knowl­edg­ment plaque to­mor­row.

Har­mony Day shares the mes­sage “ev­ery­body be­longs” and is a day to cel­e­brate cul­tural di­ver­sity and the United Na­tions’ In­ter­na­tional Day for the elim­i­na­tion of racial dis­crim­i­na­tion.

On the same day is Clos­ing the Gap Day, which com­mu­nity ed­u­ca­tion coun­sel­lor Keith Pitt ex­plained is an­other step in the right di­rec­tion.

“We are com­mit­ted to Clos­ing the Gap be­tween our indige­nous and non-indige­nous stu­dents and are al­ways look­ing for new strate­gies that will as­sist us to help our stu­dents,” he said.

The un­veil­ing of the sign will co­in­cide with the of­fi­cial open­ing of the ac­knowl­edg­ment gar­den, which was planned by three stu­dents as a re­sult of at­tend­ing the Indige­nous Lead­ers of To­mor­row con­fer­ence in Cairns.

“The three stu­dents who par­tic­i­pated last year de­cided to do a per­ma­nent ac­knowl­edge­ment to the tra­di­tional own­ers of the land, the Kuku Yalanji peo­ple,” Mr Pitt said.

“The stu­dents made a gar­den among the new path­ways be­hind the li­brary, in which they have placed a large boul­der sur­rounded by mondo grass and shad­owed by a cy­cad.

“We are cur­rently in the process of plac­ing a brass plaque on the boul­der that ac­knowl­edges the tra­di­tional own­ers of the land on which Moss­man State High school is lo­cated.”

As part of an ac­tion plan by the stu­dents, a new sign was erected at the front of the school, in­clud­ing Kuku Yalanji trans­la­tion Ku­birri Bubu Kuku Bi­nal­mal - Moss­man place of learn­ing.

To­mor­row’s cel­e­bra­tions will in­clude a wel­come lunch at 11am with the in­vited guests, tra­di­tional own­ers, staff and se­nior lead­ers be­fore the new sign will be of­fi­cially recog­nised and the ac­knowl­edg­ment gar­den un­veiled.

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