The Challenge

Tell us. Show us. Get inspired!

The Schools Reconciliation Challenge is an annual writing and art program for young people across NSW and the ACT.

The Schools Reconciliation Challenge is one way for students to learn about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australia and contribute positively to Australian society, while meeting the objectives of the K-6 and 7-10 syllabus. Every year, we ask students to create artworks and stories inspired by a theme, and to reflect on what reconciliation means to them. This year in 2020 we celebrate 11 years of the Schools Reconciliation Challenge and our theme is: Caring for Country 

Who can enter?

All young people in Years 3-10 (or of equivalent age), Indigenous and non-Indigenous, of all abilities, can enter. Young people may participate through their school or independently. It’s free to take part.

When is the Schools Reconciliation Challenge?

In 2020, the challenge runs from 2 March to 25 September. The online exhibition will be launched in November.

How to create?

Teachers: use the curriculumactivities, ideas and resources in this website to inspire and inform lessons about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander issues. Use these lessons to assist students to develop artworks or stories which reflect their ideas about reconciliation and the theme Caring for Country.

Students: use the information and ideas in this website to inspire you to create an artwork or written piece. You will need to get your teacher to help submit your entry.

Entry requirements

  • Artworks: 2D or digital, maximum size of A1. Must be accompanied by an Artist Statement
  • Writing: maximum 500 words, original creative writing that explores the theme. Must be accompanied by a Writer’s Reflection.

For more information go to how to enter  or terms and conditions

Visit our gallery of past winners and finalists.


Every year the Schools Reconciliation Challenge provides finalists with a prize pack including a library bag, resources and sponsors gifts.

Primary School finalists will receive a whole school subscription to Wingaru Education  –Aboriginal Education for all Australians

Note to readers

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers are warned that this website may contain references to deceased persons. Throughout this website, the terms Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander are used wherever possible. In the interests of readability we use the terms Indigenous and non-Indigenous to refer to the relationship between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and non-Indigenous Australians. The authors intend no disrespect. Effort has been undertaken to ensure that the information contained in this website is correct, and the Reconciliation NSW regrets any errors or omissions and any offence this may cause. Please contact us if you have a query regarding the information on this site.

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Many of these resources and activities have been developed in consultation with NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) to ensure that the program meets NSW  curriculum outcomes for Stages 3, 4 & 5.