GENERAL - NARRAGUNNAWALI: RECONCILIATION IN EDUCATION
What is Narragunnawali?
Reconciliation Australia’s Narragunnawali: Reconciliation in Education program supports all schools and early learning services in Australia to develop environments that foster a high level of knowledge and pride in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and contributions.
Narragunnawali (pronounced narra-gunna-wally) is a word from the language of the Ngunnawal people, Traditional Owners of the land on which Reconciliation Australia’s Canberra office is located, meaning alive, wellbeing, coming together and peace. It reminds us that, to foster a strong sense of well-being, coming together and peace between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the wider Australian community, reconciliation needs to be an active, living process. We pay our respects and thank the United Ngunnawal Elders Council for giving us permission to use the word narragunnawali.
The Narragunnawali online platform is free to access and provides practical ways to introduce meaningful reconciliation initiatives in the classroom, around the school and with the community. Through the Narragunnawali platform, schools and early learning services can develop a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), and a suite of professional learning and curriculum resources are available to support the implementation of reconciliation initiatives.
You can learn more about Narragunnawali here.
Who is Reconciliation Australia?
Reconciliation Australia was established in 2001 and is the lead body for reconciliation in the nation. Our purpose is to inspire and enable all Australians to contribute to reconciliation in the nation, with a vision for a just, equitable and reconciled Australia.
We are an independent not-for-profit organisation that promotes and facilitates reconciliation by building relationships, respect and trust between the wider Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Alongside the Narragunnawali: Reconciliation in Education program, Reconciliation Australia also manages the following programs and focus areas:
To learn more about Reconciliation Australia, click here.
What do you mean, 'reconciliation'?
‘Reconciliation’ is a complex term that can mean many different things to many different people. In many ways, it can be considered quite a contestable term in that it implies an inherent or initial ‘conciliation.’ However, in acknowledging the truths of colonial Australia’s relationship with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, it becomes clear that this relationship has been historically characterised by a number of (often intergenerational) injustices, such as physical violence, forced dispossession of traditional lands, and overt and unapologetic racism.
Drawing the very diverse perspectives around reconciliation together, and drawing on both national and international research, the landmark The State of Reconciliation in Australia report (2016) nevertheless found that, at its core, reconciliation comprises five integral and interrelated dimensions: historical acceptance; race relations; equality and equity; institutional integrity; and unity. Engaging with Narragunnawali provides an opportunity for educational communities to weave these dimensions together in positive and practical ways, and to harness the powerful role that education – learning, un-learning and re-learning – has to play within our nation’s reconciliation journey.
Who can get involved with Narragunnawali?
Everyone! Anyone who is interested in reconciliation in education across Australia can be involved. We encourage you to become part of the Narragunnawali community and to freely access the professional learning, curriculum and wider resources on the Narragunnawali platform, whether or not you are formally connected to a school or early learning service, and whether or not your school or early learning service has committed to developing a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).
• Principals/Directors – consider how engaging with the resources and RAP development process on the Narragunnawali platform can meaningfully connect with, and complement, other whole-school/service policies and priorities, and support your school or service to meet national teaching/quality standards.
• Teachers/Educators – consider how engaging with the Narragunnawali professional learning and curriculum resources can build your awareness and understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures, and contributions, and to support the implementation of reconciliation initiatives in your classroom.
• Students – consider encouraging staff and Student Representative Council members to reflect on opportunities for students to contribute to reconciliation projects and plans in your school community. You might like to draw on inspiration from the Narragunnawali RAP Actions and Awards films, as well as positive News pieces about student-driven action.
• Initial Teacher Education staff or students – consider engaging with some of the information and ideas here on the Narragunnawali platform.
• Parents/Carers – consider engaging with the Who has a RAP? map to explore the schools and early learning services in your local area that have a published RAP. Once signed up to the Narragunnawali platform, you can bookmark the schools/early learning services you are interested in and follow their RAP journey. You may even like to get involved in creating or joining a RAP for the schools or early learning services that you and your children are connected to (here is a positive News story about parent involvement in the RAP development process).
If you’re involved in a Parents & Citizens committee, consider opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander representation on committees.
• Community Members – consider engaging with the Who has a RAP? map to explore the schools and early learning services in your area that have a published RAP. You may like to use the map to connect with schools and early learning services, to develop or grow reconciliation networks, and build relationships within your local community.
If you know of any schools or early learning services that are demonstrating outstanding commitment to reconciliation, you might like to nominate them or endorse them for a Narragunnawali Award (one of the eligibility criteria is that all nominees demonstrate evidence that they have been endorsed by their local Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander community).
More ideas are included under the ‘How can community members connect with Narragunnawali, and with local schools and early learning services?’ FAQ in the ‘Reconciliation Action Plans’ (RAPs) section below.
For more FAQs guidance on how to sign up to the Narragunnawali platform or to proceed with creating or joining a RAP for your school or early learning service once logged in, click here. See also our Terms and Conditions.
What Terms and Conditions apply to signing up to Narragunnawali?
I understand that Narragunnawali is a national program – how can I be supported to find local information and take local action towards reconciliation in education?
While reconciliation in Australia is a national process, and Narragunnawali is a national program, schools and early learning services are encouraged to contribute to this national journey and community of practice by thinking and acting locally. Doing so helps to honour the uniqueness and diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across Australia, and to ensure that each individual school or early learning community’s reconciliation story is as relevant and responsive as possible.
The guiding information and resources on the Narragunnawali platform are purposefully broad and baseline, and are designed to be adapted to suit diverse classroom, school and community contexts. To support you in localising your reconciliation initiatives, you might like to consider engaging with the ‘Ideas for Action’ tab of the Build Relationships with Community RAP Action. Please bear in mind that it is generally most respectful to develop relationships with community members prior to asking community members to contribute to reconciliation activities in your school or early learning service.
Reconciliation Australia also works closely with state-based Reconciliation Councils, who are independent of Reconciliation Australia, and form part of the Australian Reconciliation Network. You can get in touch with for more regionally-focused perspectives, resources, events and about reconciliation in education:
• Reconciliation New South Wales
• Reconciliation Queensland
• Reconciliation South Australia
• Reconciliation Tasmania
• Reconciliation Victoria
• Reconciliation Western Australia
Is Narragunnawali having an impact - what's the evidence?
Reconciliation Australia is committed to ensuring that its Narragunnawali: Reconciliation in Education program is founded on a strong evidence base, and continually developed in response to learnings over time. Since its launch in 2015, the Narragunnawali program been externally evaluated by the ANU Centre for Social Research & Methods.
Concluding comments from the Final Report of Phase 1 of the Narragunnawali Evaluation included:
“Since the commencement of Narragunnawali… it has been a remarkably successful program. The number and diversity of schools and early learning services that are engaged with the program has increased dramatically... This is an extraordinarily high proportion for a program that is not compulsory and that is largely made available through an online portal that schools and early learning services need to opt into… The evaluation has also provided very strong evidence for the program to be having an effect on schools, early learning services and teachers… those schools and early learning services engaged with Narragunnawali maintain the activities that they are already doing, an increase the activities through time. There is even strong evidence for the positive effects of Narragunnawali from the Longitudinal Study of Indigenous Children (LSIC). Those teachers of Indigenous students who are in schools with a RAP are much more likely to feel that their school is engaging in a range of positive activities than those teachers in other schools. The teachers themselves are also more likely to be engaging in a range of positive activities… Reconciliation Australia should be commended for the open approach that they have taken to the evaluation of Narragunnawali, the responsiveness to interim findings and adjustments to the program, as well as a commitment to continue to work with schools and early services to improve the lives of Indigenous students, and enable non-Indigenous students to learn about the history, culture, language and special place of Australia’s First Peoples.”
To learn more about the evaluation of Narragunnawali, and how you can share your personal feedback and ideas, visit the Evaluation and Impact page.
I would like to contribute an idea to the Narragunnawali program. How can I do this?
We love receiving questions, suggestions and success stories from teachers, educators and other members of educational communities across the country. The Narragunnawali program and online platform wouldn’t be what it is today without the continued feedback and ideas from teachers, educators and wider members of educational communities across the country. See the ‘Share Your Feedback and Ideas’ section of the Evaluation and Impact page to learn more about opportunities for contributing ideas to the Narragunnawali program.
RECONCILIATION ACTION PLANS (RAPs)
What is a RAP and why should my school or early learning service develop one?
A Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) is a formal statement of commitment to reconciliation. A school or early learning service can develop a RAP using the Narragunnawali platform to register and extend on existing initiatives, or to begin a new journey. Narragunnawali RAPs provide a whole-scale framework and process for driving reconciliation in education, with a holistic focus on strengthening relationships, respect and opportunities in the classroom, around the school and with the local community.
While a RAP represents a plan of action, it is important for schools and early learning services to ensure that their RAPs also function as ‘living documents’. It is important that schools and early learning services enter into the RAP development process with integrity; embed RAP commitments into everyday practice; and engage in ongoing critical reflection, consultation and collaboration with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and community members. This will help schools and early learning services to remain accountable to themselves and their communities and to contribute to active and sustainable change.
Who can develop a RAP on the Narragunnawali platform?
Schools and early learning services can develop RAPs via the Narragunnawali platform no matter whether they are big or small, or are located in the country, the city or a regional town. The Narragunnawali RAP framework and development process caters for primary, secondary, senior secondary and combined schools within the Government, Independent and Catholic sectors, as well as diverse early learning services ranging from early childhood education and care centres, preschools, family day care centres, and out of school hours care services. Professional learning and curriculum resources can also be freely accessed to support the implementation of reconciliation initiatives in the classroom, around the school or service, and with the community.
To learn more about which schools and early learning services currently have a Narragunnawali RAP, visit: narragunnawali.org.au/raps/who-has-a-rap
If your organisation is in the Education and Training sector (but is not an early learning service, primary school or secondary school), your organisation can develop a RAP via Reconciliation Australia’s workplace RAPs program.
Examples of institutions in the Education and Training sector that can develop a workplace RAPs include Universities and other tertiary education providers; TAFE/VET Providers;; national and state-based education sectors; faith-based education organisations; statutory authorities; early childhood education service providers (umbrella organisations); education resource providers; education associations; education unions; Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander education bodies; and education research institutions.
Reconciliation Australia will support you in identifying some key, education-specific Actions and Deliverables for inclusion in your workplace RAP, including any relevant Narragunnawali-specific Deliverables.
To learn more about which Education and Training sector organisations currently have a workplace RAP, visit: reconciliation.org.au/reconciliation-action-plans/who-has-a-rap/
My school or early learning service hasn’t yet been built/opened – can we proceed to develop a RAP for it?
Yes! Even if your educational institution hasn’t yet opened or been built, and doesn’t yet appear in the postcode-based dropdown menu on the Narragunnawali platform, you can complete and submit the school or early learning service registration form. Your institution can then be added to our system so that you can begin the RAP creation process for it in turn. Proceeding to develop a RAP can be a great way to consider how to reflect Actions such as Visibly Demonstrate Respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultures or Family and Community Room into your school or early learning service’s built environment, and to support your educational community in proactively establishing strong employment and governance structures and processes.
How do schools and early learning services develop a RAP via the Narragunnawali platform?
Since 2014, schools or early learning services have used the Narragunnawali platform to develop RAPs. A RAP may be the beginning of a journey or a place to register and extend on existing initiatives. Developing RAP via the Narragunnawali platform involves the following key steps:
• Signing Up to the Narragunnawali platform and following the prompts to ‘Create or Join a RAP’ (click to download more FAQs about this step)
• Establishing a RAP Working Group (click to view more FAQs about this step)
• Completing the RAP Reflection Survey (click to view more FAQs about this step)
• Writing a Vision for Reconciliation (click to view more FAQs about this step)
• Adding Actions, Goals and Deliverables to the RAP (click to view more FAQs about this step)
• Submitting the RAP to the Principal/Director for approval and to Reconciliation Australia for review and publication (click to view more FAQs about this step)
• Refreshing the RAP (click to view more FAQs about this step)
This instructional film clip provides a short walk and talk through the Narragunnawali RAP development process. You can read more about Narragunnawali RAPs, and access links to support resources, here.
How do we make sure we are using respectful and inclusive language and terminology in our RAP?
While the language connected to RAP Action commitments is auto-generated when you add an Action to your RAP, there are opportunities to personalise the language used when setting Action-aligned Goals and Deliverables, and when writing your Vision for Reconciliation statement. Using respectful and inclusive language and terminology is an essential component of reconciliation and strengthening relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other Australians. The ways in which we speak about reconciliation are just as important as the ways in which we act towards it; language is itself active, and can impact on attitudes, understandings and relationships in a very real way.
For more information please see the Narragunnawali Guide to Using Respectful and Inclusive Language and Terminology.
We don't have a high enrolment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students at our school or early learning service. Can and should we still have a RAP?
Absolutely! All Australian students and children need to grow up understanding and celebrating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and contributions to increase respect and build stronger relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the wider Australian community. Reconciliation is everyone's business, and for everyone's benefit. Narragunnawali is perfectly suited to schools and early learning services that don’t have many Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander student enrolments.
What do we do once our RAP is published?
Once your RAP has been published by Reconciliation Australia, members of your RAP Working Group will be able to download a final version of your RAP document via the ‘Your RAP’ tab when logged into the Narragunnawali platform. Your school or early learning service will also appear on the interactive Who has a RAP? map.
In making a public statement of commitment to reconciliation, it’s time to take action accordingly and ensure that your RAP remains an active, living document. It is up to the RAP Working Group to continue to drive the RAP within the wider school or early learning community and ensure progress towards RAP Actions is being implemented, evaluated and celebrated. You might like to organise an event to launch your RAP, and promote your RAP and RAP-related initiatives through newsletters, on your website, at events, and as part of front office/foyer displays. See the Staff Engagement with RAP Action for more ideas on engaging the wider staffing/school community in putting your RAP into action.
Upon a RAP’s publication, Working Group members will also be notified about the opportunity to join in on an online Learning Circle session. Facilitated by the Narragunnawali team, these Learning Circles are designed to support deeper conversation and collaboration in response to RAP commitments, and to build a strong national network of reconciliation in education champions.
Can we make changes to our RAP once it has been published?
Yes, you can edit your RAP Working Group membership, and add/edit Deliverables at any time without affecting the published RAP.
In order to edit your Vision for Reconciliation, or add/remove Actions after your RAP has been published, your RAP will need to be reverted to draft and re-submitted for approval, review and re-publication. Reflection Survey responses are also unable to be edited while the RAP is published, although you will be prompted to re-complete the Reflection Survey every 12 months after publication, when the RAP is automatically reverted to draft for refresh purposes.
How do we know we are on the right track, and not being tokenistic?
If your RAP is relevant and meaningful to your school and early learning service, and actively values building and developing ongoing relationships with your local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, then you are heading in the right direction. Be flexible, ask for feedback and continuously evaluate your RAP as you continue on your reconciliation journey.
As well as consistently consulting and collaborating with your local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, completing the Reflection Survey every 12 months; tracking your progress against RAP Actions utilising the Goals and Deliverables tools; evaluating resources; and critically engaging with professional learning resources such as the Tackling Tokenism example are just some ways in which you can meaningfully reflect on, evaluate, and celebrate, RAP progress.
For more information and ideas, see the Tips for Monitoring and Evaluating RAP Progress page.
How long does a RAP last?
A RAP is valid for 12 months after publication – when it will automatically be reverted to RAP, and taken off the Who Has a RAP? map . RAPs are to be refreshed at least every 12 months to help to ensure it remains a dynamic and living document. The RAP Working Group will be sent a reminder email to let you know that the RAP needs to be refreshed.
Refreshing your RAP doesn’t mean starting all over again– while a RAP is automatically reverted to draft every 12 months after publication, all data from the previous version of the RAP will be retained within your school or early learning service's Narragunnawali RAP account.
Refreshing your RAP is an opportunity to update your RAP Working Group membership details, think about what has been achieved in the past year by re-completing the Reflection Survey, make any meaningful updates to your Vision for Reconciliation, and extend on your school or early learning service’s commitment to reconciliation by adding new Actions to your RAP.
For more information, see the Refreshing Your RAP – FAQs sheet.
How to build relationships with community?
Committing to building mutually trusting and respectful relationships with your local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community is one of the minimally required RAP Actions necessary for fostering reconciliation in a whole-scale sense.
Strong examples of reconciliation in education demonstrate an active awareness of the diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander identities, histories and cultures both within and across communities, all the while being localised and personalised. They are founded on a commitment to building sustainable, transformational relationships rather than short-term ‘transactional’ relationships, based on deep conversations, consultations and collaborations with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members.
Remember that, as with any relationship, it may take time to get to know each other and to create an atmosphere of shared safety and trust. It is also important not to put too much pressure on community members to be involved, recognising the past injustices that they may have faced in colonial education contexts, and bearing in mind that it is generally most respectful to establish a relationship before asking community members to contribute to activities in your school or early learning service. Genuinely investing thought and time into building relationships with community will help to support strong and lasting partnerships, and friendships.
See the Build Relationships with Community RAP Action page for more information and ideas.
How can community members connect with Narragunnawali, and with local schools and early learning services?
Narragunnawali acknowledges that, even if they may not be teachers or students, essentially every Australian is connected with a school or early learning service environment – whether as a parent, a family member, a provider of educational goods and services, or a wider local community member.
While reconciliation is just as much (if not more so!) the responsibility of non-Indigenous Australians, local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members can powerfully contribute to school and early learning services’ reconciliation journeys by helping to ensure that these journeys are as meaningfully and appropriately contextualised, and as culturally safe and responsive as possible.
Space should be made for community members to have their voices heard on RAP Working Groups; and to contributing to reconciliation ideas and activities such as collaborating in the celebration of significant community and cultural events, or providing advice around how local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander content and perspectives may be respectfully incorporated in curricula; and to hold local schools and early learning services accountable to their reconciliation commitments. After all, reconciliation is everyone’s business, and for everyone’s benefit, and so it is important for schools and early learning services not to place unfair expectations on their communities to represent sole drivers of the reconciliation process, but instead to talk and walk together with community, and with integrity.
What Terms and Conditions apply to RAPs?
RAPs are unique and highly valued documents. Reconciliation Australia has worked extensively with its stakeholders to develop and build both the workplace RAP Program and the Narragunnawali program for schools and early learning services. To maintain the integrity of our programs, the Reconciliation Australia and Narragunnawali logos are Trade Marked through IP Australia. Organisations, schools or early learning services that choose not to be part of Reconciliation Australia’s RAP programs, or who have not developed RAPs through to final endorsement/publication stage via these programs, should not use the words ‘Reconciliation Action Plan,’ ‘RAP,’ or the Reconciliation Australia or Narragunnawali logo on public websites or documents.
If, after developing your RAP through to public stage via the Narragunnawali platform, your school or early learning service would like to incorporate any personalised design work into the final RAP document, you would need to include the following statement to clarify where the Narragunnawali RAP framework, text and design features have been directly adapted: “This document has been adapted from [School]’s Reconciliation Action Plan, developed through Reconciliation Australia’s Narragunnawali: Reconciliation in Education program”. Where personalised design work is incorporated in this way, all uses of the Narragunnawali or Reconciliation Australia logo, and references to the words ‘Reconciliation Action Plan’ or ‘RAP’ must be approved by Reconciliation Australia.
What professional learning resources are available through Narragunnawali?
The Narragunnawali platform incorporates a suite of free-to-access professional learning resources, each of which are aligned to the National Quality Standard and the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers. Each professional learning resource is also aligned to one or more RAP Actions, with the guiding information and ideas included on each RAP Action page in many ways able to serve as professional learning tools themselves.
To support you on your professional learning journey, you can also freely register to participate in one or more of our Narragunnawali webinars. Keep an eye out for the Narragunnawali team's presence at national education-focused conferences and events too!
Time spent engaging with the Narragunnawali platform can be added to your Elective Professional Development hours. Please check the professional development guidelines with the Teacher Accreditation Regulatory Body in your state or territory.
How should teachers and educators actively engage with Narragunnawali professional learning resources?
Any way you like! The suite of Narragunnawali professional learning resources are designed to be teacher-led and can be used individually, in small groups or during staff meetings. They are designed to be easily adapted to suit diverse school or early learning community contexts.
The resources can help build all staff awareness and understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures, and contributions, and to support the implementation of reconciliation initiatives.
As well as being aligned to professional teaching standards, the professional learning resources are each aligned to one or more RAP Actions. It is an expectation that, in committing to any RAP Action, staff commit to actively engaging in personal and professional learning and reflection. Sometimes, for some non-Indigenous staff in particular, this may actually become a journey of 'unlearning' – of challenging assumptions and recognising that some of the things that they may have learnt about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures during their own education may not have been adequate.
Finding out what you don’t know – or that what you thought you knew may be limited or problematic – can sometimes be confronting or overwhelming. Before engaging in a professional learning activity, ensure that you create a safe, sensitive and supportive learning space, and remind yourself and your colleagues that Australia’s reconciliation journey is, at its core, a personal and shared learning journey.
I am a pre-service teacher – how might I engage with Narragunnawali professional learning resources?
The Narragunnawali program and resources can support pre-service teachers to to take action towards reconciliation in education even before they reach their classrooms and school or early learning communities of the future.
Some ideas for how pre-service teachers might like to engage with Narragunnawali professional learning resources – and wider aspects of the Narragunnawali program and online platform – are included on the Initial Teacher Education (ITE) page.
Is Narragunnawali professional learning accredited?
Contact us to find out more about opportunities for engaging in NESA and TQI Registered Professional Development through Reconciliation Australia’s Narragunnawali program.
Does Reconciliation Australia deliver cultural responsiveness training?
Reconciliation Australia is not an Indigenous Corporation, nor an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Cultural Responsiveness training provider.
The guiding information and resources under the following Narragunnawali RAP Action pages may support you in developing culturally safe learning environments more generally, and in connecting with cultural responsiveness training providers in your particular local community:
• Cultural Responsiveness for Staff
• Build Relationships with Community
• Elders and Traditional Owners Share Histories and Cultures
• Support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Owned Businesses
What curriculum resources are available through Narragunnawali?
The Narragunnawali platform incorporates a suite of free-to-access curriculum resources which, as well as being aligned to one or more RAP Actions, are aligned to the Early Years Learning Framework and the Australian Curriculum.
To further support you in your curriculum planning, the Narragunnawali team has also developed a suite of subject-specific resource guides spanning across all subject/learning areas! The information and resources contained in each of these guides provide a platform for teachers and educators to consider how to effectively embed important ideas around reconciliation, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and contributions, across the curriculum. Please note that the guides are neither prescriptive nor exhaustive, and that users are encouraged to consult with their local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, and critically evaluate resources, in engaging with the material contained in the guides.
How should teachers, educators, students and children actively engage with Narragunnawali curriculum resources?
As well as meeting everyday curriculum requirements by being aligned with the Early Years Learning Framework and the Australian Curriculum, the early learning, primary and secondary curriculum resources available on the Narragunnawali platform can be used for the specific purpose of promoting reconciliation and strengthening children and students’ knowledge of, and respect for, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and contributions. They can also be used to support students’ and children’s understanding of, and contributions to, the RAP Actions that your school or early learning service has committed to.
Note that the curriculum resources have been written for teachers and educators, rather than for students and children. As such, teachers and educators are encouraged to use their professional discretion in how best to adopt or adapt the resources to best suit their particular classroom and local community contexts. It is also important to remember that teachers’ and students’ learning often go hand in hand, and so teaching staff are encouraged to consider engaging in continued professional learning and reflection before/alongside bringing curriculum resources and activities into the classroom.
Teachers and educators are further encouraged to consult with their local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, and critically evaluate resources, as part of wider curriculum planning processes. Doing so will help to ensure that curriculum resources and activities are used in culturally safe and non-tokenistic ways.
Can Reconciliation Australia review, collaborate on or develop a professional learning or curriculum resource for my organisation?
Reconciliation Australia's Narragunnawali team welcomes opportunities to review or contribute to the development of professional learning and curriculum resources where reconciliation is a central theme, so please do not hesitate to contact us about the prospect of working together.
What are the Narragunnawali Awards?
Held biennially since 2017, the Narragunnawali Awards represent Australia’s first and only national awards program that recognises outstanding commitment to reconciliation in education across the country. The Awards have been designed to recognise and celebrate educational environments – across the Government, Catholic and Independent sectors – that have implemented outstanding and genuine reconciliation initiatives. These schools and early learning services will be acknowledged for the ways in which they are strengthening and building relationships, respect, and providing meaningful opportunities in the classrooms, around the school or early learning service, and with local communities.
You can learn more about the Narragunnawali Awards here.
What are the Narragunnawali Awards categories?
There are two Narragunnawali Awards categories – one for Early Learning, and one for Schools.
• Schools: this category incorporates primary, secondary, senior secondary and combined schools within the Government, Independent or Catholic sectors.
• Early Learning: this category incorporates early childhood education and care, preschool, family day care and out of school hours care services.
Can I nominate a school or early learning service for a Narragunnawali Award to encourage them to apply?
Yes! In the Narragunnawali Awards 2023 round, we are inviting individuals—parents, carers, staff, students, community members—to nominate a school or early learning service that they believe is demonstrating outstanding commitment to reconciliation in education. Nominators will be asked why they want to nominate the school or service, must demonstrate their relationship with the school or service, and can nominate more than one school or service.
Once a school or early learning service is nominated, the Principal/Director and, where relevant, wider RAP Working Group, will be notified and encouraged to formally apply for a 2-23 Narragunnawali Award.
Nominations can be submitted online any time from Monday 30 January 2023 and close 23:59 AWST on Friday 5 May, 2023.
If your school or early learning service receives one or more nominations, the school or early learning service will need to complete and submit an online application to be eligible for the Narragunnawali Awards (please see the ‘What does the Narragunnawali Awards application process involve?’ FAQ below).
Schools and early learning services can still submit an application for the Awards without having received a nomination.
What does the Narragunnawali Awards application process involve?
The application deadline for the Narragunnawali Awards 2023 is 23:59 AWST on Friday 5 May, 2023.
Any school or early learning service can apply for a Narragunnawali Award 2023 even if they have not received a nomination.
To start an application, members of the school or early learning service’s RAP Working Group can follow prompts under the ‘Your RAP’ tab when logged into the Narragunnawali platform. If the school or early learning service is part of a Cluster RAP, then Working Group members can select which school(s) or early learning service(s) within the Cluster they would like to start an individual application for via the ‘Your Cluster’ link.
While all RAP Working Group members will have technical capacity to start and save an application, only the Principal/Director will be able to submit it to Reconciliation Australia. The school or early learning service’s RAP also needs to be published at the point in time that the application is submitted.
Please NOTE: For the purpose of the Narragunnawali Awards 2023, the Principal/Director who is able to submit the application form is defined by the individual listed in the position of ‘Principal/Director’ on the school or early learning service’s RAP Working Group within the Narragunnawali platform.
What selection criteria and judging processes are involved in the Narragunnawali Awards?
Nominated schools and early learning services must demonstrate their ability to respond to the following Selection Criteria:
• Relationships: the nominated school or early learning service has strengthened relationships between non-Indigenous and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the classroom, around the school or early learning service and with the community to achieve outstanding outcomes towards advancing reconciliation.
• Respect: the nominated school or early learning service has fostered a high level of respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and contributions in the classroom, around the school or early learning service and with the community to achieve outstanding outcomes towards advancing reconciliation.
• Opportunities: the nominated school or early learning service has established or extended opportunities for staff, students, children, families and community members to achieve outstanding outcomes towards advancing reconciliation in the classroom, around the school or early learning service, and with the community.
For the Narragunnawali Awards 2023, the Judging Process then involves the following steps:
• Round 1: Longlist selection - A review committee will assess all submitted and eligible applications to select a longlist of ten applications for each category.
• Round 2: Shortlist selection - The review committee will interview each of the ten longlisted schools and early learning services respectively, via video conference to select a shortlist of six applications for each category. These interviews will take place from 19 – 23 June 2023 and longlisted applicants must be available for interview during these dates.
• Round 3: Finalist selection - The judging panel will then review each of the shortlisted applications to select the three finalists for each category. The Narragunnawali Awards 2023 finalists will be announced late July 2023.
• Round 4: Winner selection - The judging panel will then conduct a visit to each of the three finalist schools and three finalist early learning services to determine the winner in each category. The winners of each category will be announced at the Narragunnawali Awards 2023 presentation event in November 2023.
Outside of the Narragunnawali Awards, what other opportunities are there for sharing stories, and celebrating good practice, pertaining to reconciliation in education?
You can learn about, and be inspired by, the work of past Narragunnawali Awards Finalists and Winners here.
Outside of the Narragunnawali Awards specifically, you might also like to consider the following opportunities for sharing stories, and celebrating good practice, pertaining to reconciliation in education:
• Engaging with some of the information and ideas on the Reconciliation Awards RAP Action page. This RAP Action includes guidance on how to develop your own internal recognition systems, or investigating options for involvement with state or regional award programs available to schools and early learning services.
• Engaging with the required RAP Actions films playlist: Each of the 14 minimally required RAP Actions on the Narragunnawali platform are accompanied by a short illustrative film, showcasing reflections on, and work towards, these Actions in diverse schools and early learning services.
• Subscribing to Narragunnawali News: Narragunnawali News contains information about reconciliation in Australia, ideas for driving reconciliation in schools and early learning services, and highlights of great things happening in schools and early learning services across the country. The Narragunnawali team also welcomes you to contact us should you have a story that you’d like us to consider sharing with schools and early learning services across Australia.
• Explore the Who has a RAP? map: This interactive map may provide a platform for schools and early learning services to be inspired by the work of other schools and services across the country, as well as to develop networks, build relationships and promote reconciliation in their local communities of practice.
• Join the Narragunnawali closed Facebook Group: registered members of the Narragunnawali platform are invited to join this Group to engage with social media updates from the Narragunnawali team, and to exchange strengths-based ideas about reconciliation in education with other educators.
• Engage with the findings and recommendations from the ANU-Center for Social Research Method’s Evaluation of Narragunnawali: Reconciliation in Education and reflect on what these suggest about strong approaches to reconciliation in Australian schools and early learning services.
Remember that, given the diversity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and communities across Australia, good or ‘best’ practice towards reconciliation in education can often be very context specific. No matter where your school or early learning service is at on its reconciliation journey, it’s important to critically reflect on your learnings and achievements to date, and to celebrate RAP and wider reconciliation progress as you set your next steps.
I am experiencing technical glitches on the Narragunnawali platform – do you have any general troubleshooting tips?
Sometimes using a different browser (we recommend Google Chrome) can help to resolve technical glitches experienced on the Narragunnawali platform. Try clearing your cache/browsing history before logging back into the Narragunnawali platform.
If you continue to experience any technical issues, please contact us for support.
Why do I need to sign up to create a personal Narragunnawali User login?
Signing up to the Narragunnawali platform to create a personal login User account (using your own name and unique email address) means that you can:
• freely access the full suite of resources on the Narragunnawali platform
• save your favourite Narragunnawali professional learning and curriculum resources
• be a member of more than one RAP Working Group
• keep track of all RAP Actions and Deliverables that have been specifically assigned to you
• have your name published as a Working Group member on the final RAP document
• receive reminders and notifications about your RAP (e.g. when your RAP is published by Reconciliation Australia, or when it is due to be refreshed)
• receive Narragunnawali news and updates directly to your inbox
Note that Narragunnawali User account is not the same as a Narragunnawali RAP account – you will first need to sign up to the Narragunnawali platform as a User before following the prompts to ‘Create or Join a RAP.’ Multiple Users can then be represented on a single RAP Working Group. A single User can also be represented on multiple RAP Working Groups.
Should you wish to edit your personal login email address after having signed up to the Narragunnawali platform, you can log into the platform via your existing login email address and then visit the 'Your Account' page to update the address in turn.
For more information, you might like to download the ‘Signing up to the Narragunnawali Platform and Creating or Joining a RAP – FAQs’ sheet.
I signed up to create a Narragunnawali User account, but never received an activation email.
After signing up to the Narragunnawali platform, please allow a few minutes for your activation email to arrive. If it still hasn’t arrived, check your junk mail folder. If it still hasn’t arrived, you might like to follow the 'Resend Activation Email' prompts on the login page, or contact us and we can assist.
I can’t log into the Narragunnawali platform.
If, after signing up to the Narragunnawali platform, you are having trouble logging into the Narragunnawali platform, please follow the ‘I Can’t Access My Account’ prompts to resend your User account activation email or reset your password. You might also like to try using a different browser (we recommend Google Chrome), or clearing the cache/browsing history. If this still doesn’t work, please contact us and we can assist.
How/where can I update my personal login details?
Once logged into the Narragunnawali platform, you can update your personal account details by visiting the Account Settings page.
I can log into the Narragunnawali platform, but I can't access my RAP
If you have followed the prompts to 'Create or Join a RAP' for a RAP that is already in progress, you will not be able to access that RAP account until your request has been accepted by one of the existing RAP Working Group Chairs. Any existing Chairs will receive a notification of your request to join the RAP Working Group, and will be prompted to log into the Narragunnawali platform to accept your request.
In the case that the Chair(s) do not receive your request or respond to your request, please contact the Narragunnawali team.
For more information, download the ‘Signing up to the Narragunnawali Platform and Creating or Joining a RAP – FAQs’ sheet.
My school or early learning service isn't in the drop down list when I follow the prompts to 'Create or Join a RAP'
No problems! You can click on the pink ‘My school or service isn’t listed’ option in the postcode-based dropdown menu to have a registration form emailed through to you. Once you have filled out the registration form and sent it to the Narragunnawali team, we can add your school or service to our system.
Our school or early learning service has changed its name but the old name is listed on the Narragunnawali platform. How can we change it?
Please contact us and we can update the name of your school or early learning service in our system. Please let us know what name and postcode your school or early learning service is currently appearing under, and what name you would like it to be updated to instead.
Why does our RAP contain a DRAFT watermark?
The DRAFT watermark is included on the RAP poster and document until it is made public by Reconciliation Australia.
After your RAP has been published, don't forget to press the "Generate" buttons to left of the "Download" buttons on the Your RAP page (or, for Cluster RAPs, the Your Cluster page). This will ensure that your RAP documents are generated to reflect the most up-to-date versions for download.
I can't download/print my RAP document or poster.
Please make sure you have a PDF reader installed (e.g. Adobe), and have followed the prompts to ‘Generate’ the latest versions of your RAP document(s) prior to attempting to download them.
If you still can’t download and print your RAP documents, please contact us.
The RAP document that I downloaded contains outdated information
If your RAP Working Group has made any updates to your RAP since you last downloaded your RAP documents, don't forget to press the "Generate" buttons to left of the "Download" buttons on the Your RAP page (or, for Cluster RAPs, the Your Cluster page). This will ensure that your RAP documents are generated to reflect the most up-to-date versions for download.