At school

  • Kiara, 15

    At school our class was talking about how people of Asian culture succeed and that their families make it very important to them. A few of my classmates had the nerve to say that they are stealing jobs and making “Australians look stupid” and that “in Sydney schools, only like 1% is Australian and the rest Asian” and I said “excuse me but Asians are Australians too! A lot of them have been settled here for generations!” I was sent out of class for putting down another student because teachers avoid dealing with racism!

  • Lea, 29

    My family migrated from New Zealand to Australia, and my younger brother experienced racism at the hands of bullies due to his darker complexion. I found this out, and I confronted the boy, and warned him away under threat of reporting to a teacher. He backed off. Eventually, he and my brother become best friends. They were inseparable. And you would never have believed that they were once on very different terms with each other.

  • Amy, 16

    Being of Aboriginal descent, I am often looked down to by my school, mostly the Deputies and possibly the Principal. The way I have proved them wrong was by smashing my tests, ranking up to the highest in English class, producing speeches for the school, being involved in all sorts of activities, and even being selected. I guess I just love proving people wrong. It is sad that society expects nothing from me, and is not surprised by failure, so I like proving them wrong. In that I have gained a self-proclaimed motto: “Better to be over-estimated then under-estimated”.

  • Hash, 16

    school photo

    Kids can be cruel, especially when they’re trying to make someone else laugh. When I was in primary school, it was a constant fight amongst the boys in my class to be the most prominent. It was the worst in grade 5, when immature comments and racist jokes became an instant ticket to winning a laugh. I stroked off the first few harsh jokes, but once these comments and stereotypes came in more frequently I began to doubt myself, and to hate myself. I hated my skin and my origin. If my mum or dad did something different to what a white family would do, I became angry. I secluded myself as I began to drift away from most things in life. Being young, I had no clue as to how to deal with the situation so I just stayed in the toilets or hid amongst the trees where no one could see me. Year 7 was when I stepped out of my shell. In high school everyone started fresh. I was accepted and oddly enough I began to make heaps of friends. I realised that what people say to you, is only as bad as you make it. I didn’t give them the reaction they wanted. Ethical humour and respect got me where racism didn’t get them. If anyone had sneaked in a smart arsed comment on me, I would either laugh or look down on their immaturity. Harsh comments didn’t matter, I was unique and proud of it.

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