On Monday, 22 October, our Prime Minister, the Hon. Scott Morrison delivered a national apology to survivors of victims of Institutional child sexual abuse in Australia.
Within his speech, he mentioned the never heard pleas of tortured souls bewildered by an indifference to the unthinkable theft of their innocence.
Today, Australia confronts a trauma – an abomination – hiding in plain sight for far too long.
Today, we confront a question too horrible to ask, let alone answer.
Why weren’t the children of our nation loved, nurtured and protected?
Why was their trust betrayed?
Why did those who knew cover it up?
Why were the cries of children and parents ignored?
Tragically, there are instances of abuse in Gippsland Grammar’s history. Since joining our school, I have met with survivors from years past. Their stories are harrowing.
Personally, and as a school, we acknowledge the abhorrent nature of child sexual abuse and the ongoing impact it has on survivors. We are committed to a child safe environment for our students and ensuring that our values are adhered to at all times. We acknowledge the pains of the past. We will act with compassion should survivors come forward, while understanding that any form of redress may do little to restore innocence taken away at a young age.
I commend our Prime Minister for making a national apology. Gippsland Grammar supports the sentiments expressed and extends our own apology.
David Baker Bill Jones
Principal Board Chair