International Journal of Inclusive Education
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Cherbourg State School is approximately 300 km northwest of Brisbane. It is situated in an Aboriginal community at Cherbourg with approximately 250 students. At the Cherbourg State School, the aim was to generate good academic outcomes for all students from kindergarten to Year 7 and to nurture a strong and positive sense of what it means to be Aboriginal in today’s society. In this paper, I will discuss modernism and postmodernism in indigenous studies and how this has impacted on the design and development of the Indigenous Studies Programme at the Cherbourg State School. The programme was designed to provide students with the opportunity to learn about the history of Indigenous people from Indigenous voices and provide an understanding of the impact of invasion and the consequences on the lives of Indigenous people, in the past and present. The stories from the elders and members of their own community provided knowledge that allowed students to challenge Aboriginal identity by taking on existing perceptions so that they could be better processed and understood.