A humbling experience, meeting young people at Wiltja Anangu Secondary College in Adelaide, South Australia, many of whom are Award participants.
The Wiltja Secondary College is an initiative of the Anangu (Pitkantjatjara word for “people”) whose country is the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Lands in the far north-west of South Australia.
In the 1970s, a group of Ernabella women attended an Indigenous Peoples’ Conference in Adelaide, and foresaw the advantages of offering mainstream secondary schooling to Lands’ students.
The Wiltja Secondary College offers secondary education from years eight to twelve, to students normally attending remote community schools in the Aboriginal Lands’ District (ALD), and also Yalata and Oak Valley. Wiltja students are enrolled at the local high school, wear the uniform and attend both mainstream and Wiltja classes. Students board at the Wiltja Residence.
Tonight was the end-of-year graduation celebration, which included recognition of Award participants, testimonies from graduating Year twelve students, dance, music and an awful lot of very good food!