The Clonard College community acknowledges the traditional custodians of the land on which we educate our students, the Wathaurong people of the Kulin nation. We honour and pay our respects to elders past, present and emerging. We commit ourselves to walk alongside all Aboriginal people in the quest for justice, reconciliation and recognition through the transforming power of education.
Moreover, we endeavour to provide a teaching and learning environment that promotes and facilitates respect, trust and positive relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) people in our wider community. We strive to build and maintain meaningful relationships with our ATSI families and ensure that their voices are heard and listened to so that we can walk together and culture can be an active part of school life at Clonard.
FIRE (Friends, Igniting Reconciliation through Education) Carriers are elected every year and are senior members of the Student Leadership Team. The gathering of people in a circle around the fire is for the calling of people together for cooking, eating and warmth at night. It is used for smoking the people and the land when gathered for important ceremonies. It is around the fire that stories are told and the law was taught. Fire is at the heart of Aboriginal culture. In the Aboriginal community fire represents the spiritual connection for the individual to Mother Earth and the Ancestors. And so it is fire that represents the learning, teaching and your schools journey towards Reconciliation. The FIRE Carrier leadership position is not limited to ATSI students and is open to any student who is committed to educating others about reconciliation and Indigenous culture, history and people.
Clonard’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander student group is also active in educating others to create change. Linked in with our local Wathuarong community students champion reconciliation, share culture and identity and foster positive relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. With an emphasis on recognition and empathy, these encounters result in all students valuing and building connections with their world, their community, and their environment.
Immersion opportunities at Year 9 to remote communities in the Northern Territory; Santa Teresa, Ampilatwatja and Naiyu offer a transformative experience for students who through engagement, connection and learning understand our world better. We strive to ensure these partnerships are mutually beneficial and rewarding for all involved.