Symposium 2021 graphic

IEBA extends a huge thank you to those who were able to attend our 2021 Symposium in Cairns or online. We know that there were still some late cancellations due to the pandemic and many others who were not able to travel or participate at this time.

However as a hybrid event there are plenty of sessions that have been recorded and we will keep you informed on how these can be accessed. Be sure to be signed up to our E-News, The GAP, to be kept up to date.

The Symposium program is below for your reference.

The Next 10 Years: Are We Ready?
The 4th national Symposium was held during National Reconciliation Week in Cairns from 2-4 June 2021. It was a hybrid event that allowed participation in person, or from work, home or anywhere online.

The theme of The Next 10 Years: Are We Ready? focused on the need for all schools with Indigenous students to understand the ambitions of Indigenous voices in the Closing the Gap targets, and the need to plan and act to achieve these goals.

The three streams of exploration at the Symposium were:

  • Indigenous Voices – beyond the Uluru Statement from the Heart providing a way for Indigenous Australians to have input on matters that are important to improve their lives.
  • Closing the Gap – the new target seeks 96 per cent of students attaining year 12 by 2031.
  • Reconciliation – promoting relationships, respect and trust between the wider Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.


The National Agreement on Closing the Gap

The Coalition of Peaks

Symposium Program
Selected sessions were live-streamed. They included two free sessions and four sessions that required a purchased ticket.



Day One – WEDNESDAY 2 JUNE 12.00pm to 5.00pm
10.00-12.00pm Registration  
12.00-1.00pm Welcome Lunch
12.50-1.10pm Welcome to Country  
1.15-2.30pm Opening Address – The Hon Ken Wyatt AM MP
IEBA Chairperson’s Welcome Address

Watch video

2.30-3.00pm Afternoon Tea
3.00-3.40pm Keynote address – INDIGENOUS VOICES – Thomas Mayor, Torres Strait Islander, author, activist and unionist   ONE 
3.45-4.40pm Q&A Panel – Hearing Indigenous Voices in Education
4.40-4.50pm Close
5.00-7.00pm Welcome Reception, Lockhart Room
Cultural Performance by Minjil
Day Two – THURSDAY 3 JUNE 8.50am to 5.00pm
9.00am-9.10am Day 2 Welcome
9.10-10.00am Keynote address – CLOSING THE GAP
Donnella Mills, Chair of the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation
Hypothetical – Panel
10.00-10.30am STUDENT VOICE – Nathaniel Tamwoy Watch video
10.30-11.00am Morning Tea
11.00-11.40am Keynote – THE WAY FORWARD – Richard Stewart, Manager –Transition Support Service, Queensland Department of Education THREE
11.40-12.30pm Q&A – Panel – How are we going to Close the Gap?
12.30-1.15pm Lunch
1.15-1.45pm 2021-22 Budget Support for Indigenous students – Paul Denny, National Indigenous Australians Agency

Watch video

1.45-5.00pm Concurrent Workshops (incl Afternoon Tea)
Indigenous Voice, Closing the Gap and Cultural Competency
6.30-9.30pm Symposium Dinner, Cairns Waterfront
Day 3 – FRIDAY 4 JUNE 9.00am to 1.30pm
9.00-9.10am Day 3 Welcome  

Keynote address – RECONCILIATION IN EDUCATION – Zoe Cassim, Reconciliation Australia

10.00-10.45am Q&A – Panel – Reconciliation in Education
10.45-11.15am Morning Tea
11.15-12.00pm Workshops 3- Reconciliation in Education – Discussion
12.00-12.15pm Group reporting
12.15-12.30pm Closing session – Three perspectives
12.30-1.30pm Lunch
1.30-4.30pm WORKSHOP – Cultural Standard  


All delegates will have access to the recordings after the event and the access links to tune-in live or later will be distributed via email after the event. The free sessions will be publicly available after the event also.


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