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A History of

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A Global Indigenous Education Movement

The World Indigenous Peoples’ Conference on Education (WIPCE) commenced in 1987 in Vancouver, Canada.

The pivotal role of community, represented by Elders and community knowledge keepers, was captured in the inaugural WIPCE conference providing both a primacy of purpose and of place.

WIPCE is now a movement of individuals and organisations dedicated to the design and development of culturally affirming and intellectually enriching education for Indigenous peoples.

At the 2017 WIPCE Toronto, Canada, a series of Master Classes were offered to participants. These two-day classes were designed and targeted to enhance the process of knowledge creation and sharing by focusing on a designated area of interest and need, within the environment that extends beyond the traditional workshop approach. These classes were the brainchild of WIPCE International Council Chair Professor Bob Morgan of Walgett western NSW, Australia, In 2022, when WIPCE Adelaide resumed after a two year delay, the name of the Master Classes was changed to WIPCE Knowledge and Sharing Circles.  


Two Knowledge and Sharing Circles were held on September 28 & 29, 2022 at the Playford Hotel, North Terrace Adelaide during the 2022 WIPCE Adelaide:

- Focus & Purpose: To Revise and Revitalise the Coolangatta Statement; facilitated by Dr. Noe Noe Wong-Wilson & Ms. Faylene Mahina Duarte

-Strategies to Restore and Revitalise Indigenous Languages; facilitated by Dr. Candace Galla & Dr. Ray Kelly


The outcome of the discussion on the Coolangatta Statement on Indigenous Education was a strong suggestion for a symposium which would be held approximately eighteen months between the 2022 and 2025 WIPCE gatherings to review and update the statement which was ratified in 1999 and to discuss its relevance nearly twenty-five years after it was created.   The WIPCE International Council adopted this recommendation at its meeting in Adelaide following the conclusion of the conference.  The 2024 WIPCE Coolangatta Symposium is slated for March 21-23, 2024 in Hilo, Hawai'i.

35 Years of WIPCE

WIPCE conferences attract Indigenous education experts, practitioners, scholars, students and communities. Following is an outline of the upcoming event in Australia and previous WIPCE conferences hosted by First Nation educators around the world.


2022 Indigenous Education Sovereignty


2017 A Celebration of Resilience


2014 E mau ana ka moʻolelo


2011 Living Our Indigenous Roots


2008 Respecting Tradition, Shaping the Future.


2005 Celebrate our stories and beliefs.

WIPCE People Logo Coming Soon

2002 WIPCE

1990 WIPCE

1990 WIPCE

1999 World Indigenous Peoples’ Conference on Education Hilo, Hawai‘i

WIPCE 1999

1996 WIPCE_edited

WIPCE 1996

WIPCE 1993

1993 WIPCE

1987 WIPCE

1987 WIPCE

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