Frequently asked questions

About the Schools Reconciliation Challenge

What is the Schools Reconciliation Challenge?

The Schools Reconciliation Challenge is Reconciliation NSW’s annual art and writing competition for young people in NSW and the ACT.

How do I find out more about this year’s Schools Reconciliation Challenge?

The Schools Reconciliation Challenge website contains information on this year’s theme, how to register and participate in the Challenge. Visit the website at Alternatively, you may contact Reconciliation NSW via email at or phone 02 8095 9600.  

Key Dates

When is the Schools Reconciliation Challenge?

This year the Schools Reconciliation Challenge opened in April and the we will be accepting art and writing submissions for this years competition up until 30 August 2019. However, we encourage students and teachers to engage with the resources and activities provided on the Schools Reconciliation Challenge website throughout the year.

When will the Schools Reconciliation Challenge Exhibition be held?

The Exhibition Launch for the 2019 Schools Reconciliation Challenge will be held in October 2019. The 2018 Schools Reconciliation Challenge Exhibition 2018 – Our Voices, Our Future! is currently touring Regional NSW and will open in Dubbo on April 17 at Dundullimal Homestead To stay up to date on all Reconciliation NSW events and activities you can join us as a member or check us out on social media. 


What is the theme for 2019?

The theme for the 2019 Schools Reconciliation Challenge is Speaking and Listening from the Heart. Listening to the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is at the heart of reconciliation and Speaking and Listening from the Heart allows students and teachers to create art and writing works that are inspired and influenced by the voices, the stories, the culture and the history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Speaking and Listening from the Heart is about connecting and sharing what is important to us as individuals, families, communities and as a country; this honest and authentic way of communicating helps us all to understand each other and enable positive transformation and change. More information about the theme can be found at  

Registration and Participation

Who can participate?

The Schools Reconciliation Challenge is open to all young people in years 5-9 (or equivalent ages), Indigenous and non-Indigenous, of all abilities. Young people may enter the Schools Reconciliation Challenge through their school or independently.

How do I register my school?

Register your school for the 2019 Schools Reconciliation Challenge by emailing or visit for more details.

How do we get started?

  1. Begin with Explore 2019 theme and follow the session guides to inform your lessons about reconciliation and this year’s theme Speaking and Listening from the Heart.
  2. Then do the activities in Create Art and/or Create Writing. Use these lessons to assist and inspire students to develop original artworks or stories which reflect their ideas about reconciliation and the theme Speaking and Listening from the Heart.
  3. Submit artworks and stories by 30 August 2019 via the online submissions portal. Each entry must have a completed Entry Form attached.


Teaching Kit and Resources

How do I access a hard copy of the Teaching Kit?

In 2017, the Reconciliation NSW launched the Schools Reconciliation Website, which has replaced the hard copy version of the Teaching kit. Access the online Teaching kit at

How do I find out which curriculum outcomes the Schools Reconciliation Challenge covers/addresses?

The Schools Reconciliation Challenge covers BOSTES curriculum outcomes relating to English, History and Visual Arts for stages 3 and 4. For further information about the Curriculum Outcomes for the Schools Reconciliation Challenge please visit at  


How do I submit entries?

Artworks and short stories created for the Schools Reconciliation Challenge are to be submitted by 30 August 2019. Writing and artwork submissions must be an original creative pieces that relate to the 2019 theme Speaking and Listening from the Heart and explore reconciliation more broadly. Entry requirements:

  • Artworks (2D or digital) must be a maximum size of A1 and accompanied by an Artist Statement
  • Writing must be a maximum of  500 words and must be accompanied by a Writer Reflection.

Submissions that do not meet these requirements will not be accepted.

Can students submit both art and writing?

Yes, students may choose to create artworks or stories or both. Please note that if students choose to submit both an artwork and story they will need to complete an artists and writers statement for each of their entries.

Teachers Click Here

This Kit was developed in consultation with the Board of Studies Teaching and Educational Standards NSW (BOSTES) to ensure that the competition meets NSW curriculum outcomes for Stages 3, 4 & 5.

Enter by 30 August 2019

Submit Here