AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL FLAG DAY 3 SEPTEMBER 2005
The Australian flag is one of our most important symbols that unites us together as a nation. As Australians, we are privileged to live in one of the most free and democratic societies in the world. A robust parliamentary system supported by democratic institutions that maintain the rule of law and respect for human rights are essential to our freedom.
On Saturday 3 September it is one hundred and four years since the Australian National Flag was flown from the home of first Commonwealth Parliament in Melbourne. Since 2005 is the sixtieth anniversary of the end of World War Two, it is timely to promote the values that the flag symbolises. These include pride in Australia’s history and our achievements, the sacrifices of previous generations, respect for our cultural diversity and a strong commitment to Australia as a nation.
Flag raising ceremonies in schools encourage students to appreciate the essential values that are being encouraged in all Australian schools. These values include care and compassion, doing your best, a fair go, freedom, honesty and trustworthiness, integrity, respect, responsibility and understanding, tolerance and inclusion. Schools can show they care by holding a ceremony to recognise our national flag, sing the national anthem and celebrate the values which are embedded in these national symbols.
From 2005, the Australian Government is making it a condition of its general funding to State and Territory education authorities and non-government schools that all schools have a functioning flagpole, fly the Australian flag and display the poster Values for Australian Schooling. To help schools fly the Australian flag, the Australian government is providing up to $1,500 to assist with the installation of a flagpole where the schools has no functioning flagpole. Thus far, 2,042 primary and secondary schools across Australia have applied for funding under this initiative.
The image of Simpson and his donkey standing under our best known symbol, the Australian National Flag, is the design used on the Values for Australian Schooling poster. I encourage all young Australians to reflect on the Australian National Flag as we celebrate its 104th anniversary, remember and respect the sacrifice of earlier generations who fought under its banner, and take pride in the knowledge that their sacrifices build the foundations on which our great democracy stands.
Australian Government Minister of Education, Science and Training