Simpson Prize winners keep Anzac spirit alive

Minister for Regionalisation, Regional Communications and Regional Education Bridget McKenzie said the Anzac legacy is in good hands with the quality of entries by students in the national Simpson Prize competition.

Minister McKenzie today addressed and honoured the state and territory winners and runners-up in the competition at an online presentation ceremony in Parliament House.

The Simpson Prize, a national competition for Year 9 and 10 students, encourages participants to explore what the Anzac spirit means for Australia.

Minister McKenzie said all Prize finalists and runners-up submitted outstanding work of which they should be exceptionally proud.

“It’s incredibly impressive to see Australia’s history and the Anzac legacy considered so thoughtfully by new generations of Australian students,” she said.

“This year’s winners and runners-up were selected from more than 800 entries from students Australia-wide who wrote essays or prepared audio-visual presentations to the question ‘How do lesser known stories from the Western Front expand our understanding of the Australian experience of the First World War?’

“I congratulate everyone who entered the competition for continuing to honour and acknowledge the efforts of those who gave so much for our country during the First World War.”

Students were encouraged to agree with, debate, or challenge the statement from a variety of perspectives – individual, national and global – using a range of source materials including artworks, photographs and letters.

The 2020 Simpson Prize finalists also attended the online ceremony having been unable to attend a ceremony last year due to COVID-restrictions.

The eight 2020 and eight 2021 winning students from each state and territory received a $5,000 information technology package each.

The Australian Government has supported the History Teachers’ Association of Australia to organise the running of the Simpson Prize since 1998.

“I encourage students to participate in next year’s Simpson Prize which will address the question ‘To what extent have the Gallipoli campaign and the Western Front overshadowed other significant aspects of Australians’ experience of the First World War?'” Minister McKenzie said.

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