Women’s suffrage competition unites education sectors

07 May 2019 newsmedia

Students in Years 6, 7, 8 and 9 from all South Australian education sectors are being invited to take part in a research competition to mark the 125th Anniversary of Women’s Suffrage in the state.

The competition will provide students with the opportunity to participate researching one of the great democratic achievements of South Australia’s history, and to develop an understanding of the tireless efforts of many that culminated in the passing of the landmark legislation.

Entries are now open and will close on Friday 30 August, with winners announced in October. The Education Department is running the competition in partnership with the Office for Women, Catholic Education SA, the Association of Independent Schools of SA and the History Trust of SA.

Education Minister John Gardner said the competition was an opportunity for students to delve into an important part of South Australia’s history.

“Undertaking these research projects will help students to build an appreciation of the impact of history on the lives of South Australians today, and in particular women, throughout the research process,” said Minister Gardner.

“It is exciting to see that all the education sectors are coming together to recognize and celebrate this important milestone in our state’s history."

“It would be great to see as many students as possible in Years 6 to 9 participate as it will provide them with in depth and valuable insight into the history of politics and women in South Australia.”

Minister for Human Services Michelle Lensink said the competition presents an opportunity for young people to commemorate the landmark victory for women’s rights.

“The Adult Suffrage Bill that enabled South Australian women to vote for the first time anywhere in Australia, and to stand as members of parliament, was the end result of years of campaigning, letter writing, signature gathering and lobbying,” said Minister Lensink."

“South Australia has proudly produced a number of successful female leaders and politicians throughout the years."

“While this competition provides an excellent opportunity for our young people to reflect on this journey and celebrate it, there is still much to be done as a community to continue to work towards gender equality."

“Many of the historical stories that these students will explore are as relevant today as ever, and I hope they can help inspire another generation of female leaders in our state.”

A recognition ceremony will be held for winning students at Parliament House in November. Thursday 19 December 2019 will mark the 125th anniversary of the Adult Suffrage Bill.

For more information on the research competition and how to apply, visit education.sa.gov.au.