Monmia Primary School pupils are paying tribute to the nation’s first people.

After studying indigenous culture, the Keilor Downs school’s grade 3 and 4 pupils led the push for the installation of an indigenous garden to be a centrepiece in the school’s grounds.

Monmia assistant principal Lucy Vorpasso said the garden became a whole community project.

“The students did a lot of research as to the sort of plants and artwork that was needed for the garden,” Ms Vorpasso said.

“But there were also things like excavation works, which we had some parents and staff members generously give up their time to help complete.”

While the project isn’t quite finished,
Ms Vorpasso said it had already become a feature of the school grounds.

“It’s a tranquil place,” she said. “The way it’s been designed with the plants, seats and artwork really encourages a place of community where the students can come and have a chat.”

The school had an opening ceremony for the garden late last month, but Ms Vorpasso said there’s a few more things to be done.

“We’re consulting with experts in terms of the additional artwork we’re going to put in,” she said.

“Last month’s opening was supposed to have a smoking ceremony, which didn’t go ahead because the Aboriginal elder was sick. So we’re hopeful that we can include that next time.”