'It's about education': Halls Head mother calls for schools to teach more Aboriginal history

Halls Head mother Bianca Willder (second left, pictured with her children Aamarli, Chaise and Stevie-Lee Jones) is calling on schools to introduce more Aboriginal history to their curriculums. Photo: Supplied.
Halls Head mother Bianca Willder (second left, pictured with her children Aamarli, Chaise and Stevie-Lee Jones) is calling on schools to introduce more Aboriginal history to their curriculums. Photo: Supplied.

Aboriginal artist and proud mother of seven Bianca Willder is calling on schools to introduce more Aboriginal history to their curriculums.

The Halls Head local has been taking to the streets as part of the Black Lives Matter protests in WA over recent weeks, but says more needs to be done to quell systemic racism in Australia.

You can't just play Rabbit Proof Fence and expect that to be enough.

Bianca Willder

Ms Willder has been an indigenous educator attending Peel region schools for years now, and said teaching children about the plight of the Aboriginal people will be the key moving forward.

"Most people just don't know enough about Aboriginal history, so how are they supposed to have any empathy when they simply don't know what's happened in the past?" she said.

"If you educate kids about this from a young age they're going to have a better understanding as to what that history is and what our people went through, so they will be more likely to comprehend things like the Black Lives Matter protests."

Bianca Willder (left) has been attending the recent Black Lives Matter protests with family. Photo: Supplied.

Bianca Willder (left) has been attending the recent Black Lives Matter protests with family. Photo: Supplied.

Ms Willder said subjects like American history and foreign languages often took precedence over Aboriginal history in school curriculums.

"Our kids could be learning so much more about the real history of their own country," she said.

"In school my kids are learning about American history and how to speak Japanese, but everything they know of their own culture, the culture of people native to this country, they've had to learn at home.

"We should be teaching kids about the stolen generation. You can't just play Rabbit Proof Fence and expect that to be enough."

Ms Willder joined the thousands of people marching for the Black Lives Matter movement in Perth on Saturday, just one week after she and her family took part in the Mandurah protest.

For her, it's about far more than the policing issues the protests have centred around.

"It's not just about one man that's been killed by police," she said.

"These protests are for a range of issues that have been going on for decades now. It's not just a bandwagon we have jumped on overnight.

"I've seen my nan get racially vilified right in front of me, and I think most Aboriginal people would have had an experience like that.

"In the end this is about trying to make a change, and who would honestly listen to us if we just stood at the end of our driveways holding signs?

"Again, it's about education. I think if people knew more about what life was like for Aboriginal people they might be more empathetic and less defensive when we have these conversations."

More than 7000 people attended the Black Lives Matter rally in Perth on Saturday, despite calls from WA Premier Mark McGowan to postpone the event amid coronavirus concerns.

Thousands of masks and hand sanitiser were handed out from hygiene stations at the protest.

This story 'It's about education': mother calls for schools to teach more Aboriginal history first appeared on Mandurah Mail.