Teachers should discuss Invasion Day with kids
Schools, along with sporting clubs, councils and other public organisations, should take a progressive stance on social issues.
They're token gestures, but they matter because institutions like this are important leaders in bringing about vital social change.
They have a role to play in helping to shape impressionable young people by modelling anti-discriminatory attitudes.
It's important that young sports fans, as well as school kids, are given a thorough grounding in the need to fight against racism and sexism.
We've seen what happens when bigoted, objectionable views are allowed to proliferate -whether it's Collingwood's institutionalised racism or St Kevin's College boys' disrespectful attitudes against women.
If I was paying $36,000 for my son to attend Brighton Grammar, then I would expect a nod to the discussion surrounding Australia Day being seen by a growing number of people as Invasion Day.
I don't have a problem with teachers taking controversial stances on issues to challenge students and get them thinking.
It is not possible to be apolitical on an issue like Australia Day because even saying nothing about the views of Indigenous people on the issue is taking a stance.
The Brighton Grammar comments, made by acting deputy principal Meg Adem, do not appear to be out of line.
She merely acknowledged there were a range of views on the issue.
Of course, discussions about Invasion Day or the removal of Australia Day branding or kneeling before a game are no substitution for real action.
As always, there is a desperate need for social and political initiatives that don't just make white people feel good, but lead to lasting change in the daily lives of Indigenous people.
But it's a start, and it's better than doing and saying nothing at all.
Originally published as Teachers should discuss Invasion Day with kids