Glen Innes' NAIDOC week kicks off at high school

MUSICAL TALENT: Bob Blair playing a didgeridoo at the high school's NAIDOC week flag-raising ceremony (yes - this didge sounds the same).
MUSICAL TALENT: Bob Blair playing a didgeridoo at the high school's NAIDOC week flag-raising ceremony (yes - this didge sounds the same).

It's officially NAIDOC week 2019.

The Glen Innes high school kicked off the week dedicated to indigenous culture, history and language with a flag-raising ceremony yesterday.

Principal Adam Forrester said they're one of the few schools to formally raise the indigenous flag, and the PNG flag. The high school is disproportionately indigenous, with around 14-15 per cent of students identifying as aboriginal or Torres strait islander.

This year's theme is 'voice, treaty, truth'.

PM Bob Hawke promised a treaty in 1988, but there has been little progress since at a federal level. The state of NSW, which has not negotiated a treaty with Australia's first peoples, is in the majority. Victoria has signed a treaty, with the NT and WA on track.

"We're the only civilised if you like European country that hasn't had some form of treaty with its local indigenous people which is unusual," he said.

"It seems a bit of a no brainer, it doesn't take a great deal to make a treaty to move forward. It's like saying sorry."

The week is set to be a spectacular demonstration of Glen Innes' traditional people. The point of the week is to make indigenous people feel at home in Glen Innes, said principal Forrester..

"That's probably our challenge is getting the community on board, I mean they've had lots of bad experiences as they're growing up," he said.

"(But) the school isn't the same place it used to be. The school's a friendly place; we still have challenges, we still have problems. We still have issues with the kids.

"But we're here to try to sort that out and stop all that negativity about schools that maybe they've had and the experience they've had at school unfortunately."

Ashleigh Watson.

Ashleigh Watson.