Bronte Public School students sing in harmony for peace
Kindergarten to Year 6 students at Bronte Public School started Harmony Day 2003 with a whole school understanding of what makes a harmonious Australian society:
- Valuing linguistic and cultural diversity
- Saying NO to racism
- Resolving conflict peacefully
Classes acknowledged cultural identity by producing artworks, sharing gourmet delights from various countries and singing songs. One class especially composed a song for harmony day assisted by a parent, who creates music for the Australian Film Industry.
Following lunch, the Stage 3 students organised an assembly including invited members of the school and wider community. Each guest was asked to address the assembly on the following question:
"How do you promote and maintain harmony in your everyday life in this multicultural city?"
Guest speakers included Ross Coulthardt (journalist), Katherine Haratsis (Multicultural Consultant, Bondi District Office), Jenny Hope (actor), Jeannette McHugh (retired federal MP for Phillip and Minister for Consumer Affairs), Kuranda Seyit (Community Liaison Officer, Islamic Councils of Australia) and Vanessa Steven (lecturer School of Politics University of NSW).
Following each guest speaker, a student responded to the ideas that were expressed.
At the end of the day, the whole school formed a friendship spiral in the playground to sing a new version of "We Are One". This was Bronte's way of making a peaceful and public statement at this sensitive time in our country's history, that acknowledged the emotions felt by our school community. It was also a very clear declaration by students, staff and parents of their commitment to cultural inclusivity and the promotion of harmony in our Australian schools.