The two-day premier conference will be held virtually online and feature an esteemed line-up of global educational leaders and experts.

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
Beyond Captains – Reimagining Student Leadership in Primary Schools

Presented by: Anne-Marie Maw
Organisation: St Agatha’s Catholic Primary School, QLD

From line-leaders to school leaders, have you considered the leadership journey for students in a primary school setting? Working in partnership with the Quaglia Institute, St Agatha's Primary School, Clayfield has created a leadership program focusing on the whole child through authentic experiences, student voice and a growing understanding of self and others. Through this presentation, participants will be called to challenge their current beliefs around student leadership within their schools and organisations. Based on research from Anderson (2017), Dweck (2006), Fullan (2017), Hoerr (2016), Quaglia (2014) and Nash (2019) this presentation demonstrates how one school is working to develop students who lead from where they are and consciously contribute to the cultute and wellbeing of their community.

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
Connecting the Head and the Heart - Ferocious Warmth Leadership

Presented by: Tracey Ezard
Organisation: Tracey Ezard P/L, VIC

This workshop will explore the concept of Ferocious Warmth leadership - leaders who are able to balance the complexity and challenges of the role and connect heads and hearts through the process. Ferocious Warmth leaders focus on results AND relationships, logic AND emotion, strategy AND culture in balance, not in isolation. Emerging through observation and interviews of leaders over many years, and the evidence base of leadership in emotional intelligence, courage and vulnerability and lead learners, the leadership concept provides an accessible framework for leaders to understand their impact, the key elements of a Ferocious Warmth leaders and the keys to achieving the daily dance of leadership with balance.

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
The Catalyst Journey: Transforming Lives through Learning

Presented by: Ross Fox
Organisation: Catholic Education Canberra-Goulburn, ACT

Imagine a school system where every student is a competent reader at every stage of schooling. This is what I set out to achieve through Catalyst, our professional learning program that supports teachers to apply evidence-based practice.

Many leaders aspire to transform their system through a new framework or partnership. I simply want our students to be competent readers and teachers to be excellent at instruction.

Catalyst is one of the largest system-led implementations of the science of reading and learning in Australia. It brings together cognitive science and education to refine our curriculum, pedagogy and assessment and lift student outcomes.

We have two bold goals for Catalyst - that every one of our 22,000 students is a competent reader at each stage in their learning and that high impact teaching practice is applied in every one of our 1,000 classrooms.

This presentation will explore the Catalyst journey, from the science that defines it to the practicalities of implementation.

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
A Life of Purpose

Presented by: Dr Phil Cummins
Organisation: a School for tomorrow, VIC

Phil has been leading the longest running and largest global research project on an education for character. Grounded in the lived experiences of thousands of students, teachers, leaders and families from hundreds of schools across the world, Phil will share the learning of the team from a School for tomorrow. about the central role of preparing students to lead a life of purpose in creating a future-fit school that is human centred, technologically enriched, people and place and planet conscious, and intentionally purposeful about everything it does. Drawing on our competency framework that seeks to prepare students to thrive in their world as good people, future builders, continuous learners & unlearners, solution architects, responsible citizens and team creators, we will gather virtually to reflect individually and collaboratively on how these learnings might be applied in practice to bring about meaningful transformation in how young people learn, live, lead and work in their communities of inquiry and practice.

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
Beyond the Fruit Basket Inspiring Leaders to Enhance Teacher Wellbeing

Presented by: Pascale Drever
Organisation: Ascham School, NSW

This presentation will involve the facilitation of a discussion on the role of leaders in enhancing teacher wellbeing. Committed to a whole-school approach to wellbeing, we are in the process of embedding a philosophy and framework that will make wellbeing more than a buzzword. We aim to allow our community to develop skills and strategies to navigate life’s challenges more effectively by providing students and staff with the right social, emotional, and physical resources to better equip them to create a flourishing life. Wellbeing is not a trend, it is not a fashion, and it will not be out of date next year. It is universally known that, as human beings, if we feel good, we function well, we will be well beings. Implementing a whole school philosophy has had the cascading effect of bringing into greater focus the need for our leaders to enhance the wellbeing of staff.

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
What we are learning about learning: Victoria’s Tutor Learning Initiative

Presented by: Louise Stewart, Cat Stephens and Simon Purdie
Organisation: Department of Education and Training Victoria, VIC

Remote learning last year was challenging for many students and this was the impetus for Victoria’s roll out of the $250 million Tutor Learning Initiative (TLI). To date over 6,000 tutors have been appointed by government schools and 850 tutors in non-government schools. Approximately 102,374 government school students and 23,000 non-government school students have already been identified for, or are receiving, Tutor Learning support.To date over 6,000 tutors have been appointed by government schools and 850 tutors in non-government schools. Through our interim evaluation findings, we already know that the TLI is the right response to the need for additional learning support, following disruptions to teaching and learning in 2020. We also know that the students identified for tutoring are those that were most impacted by remote and flexible learning. This presentation will provide an overview of schools who are doing this work well and teaching us a lot about how to differentiate in order to accelerate learning. We will look at a range of video case studies showing us how schools have successfully drawn on connection, community and collaboration to see impressive learning outcomes for their students.

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
Growing Good Men for the Future

Presented by: Lauren Cook
Organisation: St Margaret’s Berwick Grammar, VIC

Several important conversations are occurring in society today about gender equality and respect for women - but fewer conversations are happening around the kinds of education we need to ensure our young men are ready be the kinds of young men we need in the future. The current prevailing climate in which men are encouraged to restrict the sharing of emotions and avoid vulnerability at all costs contributes to the poor behaviours often reported by the media, and particularly prevalent in men in positions of power.

How can schools and educators contribute to defining and encouraging a new kind of masculinity in which men can combat the social pressures placed upon them and stand up and take their places confidently as the supportive, caring young people they truly are? How can we ensure the men of the future avoid the mistakes and the toxicity of the past?

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
What do middle leaders need from their leaders?

Presented by: Liz Benson
Organisation: Coombabah State High School, QLD

This is a call to all system and school leaders – what do you need to know and do to strengthen your middle leaders’ capability to achieve your education vision. The role of the middle leader has changed significantly in the last 15 years. This conversation aims to fill a gap in middle leadership professional learning by addressing what middle leaders do every day - leading the core business of the school. In this interactive workshop explore tools and strategies you can use with your middle leaders to sharpen their leadership practices.

Tools that are effective for:

  • translating whole school strategic goals into faculty and project action plans
  • guiding middle leaders to sustain improvement plans
  • enabling middle leaders to see their daily work as developers of teacher capability for high impact student learning
  • cultivating a culture where middle leaders can feed up to you

We’ll also explore what middle leaders need from their leaders.

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
Creating a world-class Catholic primary school: community, learning and faith

Presented by: Professor David Gurr, Christopher Reed and Associate Professor Lawrie Drysdale
Organisation: University of Melbourne and Mother Teresa Catholic Primary School, VIC

In an outer northern suburb of Melbourne, Chris Reed has led the creation of Catholic Primary School that is world class. From the quality building and grounds, engagement of staff, students and families in communities of inquiry and learning, and a contemporary approach to faith development, there is a synergy between learning and faith that has produced a school that international and local educators want to know more about. In this presentation we draw on two strands of research about the school: exploration of the development of professional learning communities within the school, and the development of the school as a Recontextualising Dialogue School. Both studies used multiple perspective case study research methods. The presentation will have three parts: a description of the school and the model of learning and leadership used to develop the school; a dialogue between Chris as principal and insider-researcher, and Lawrie and David as external researchers; reflections, questions and comments from the audience.

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
Educators' collaborative use of research to improve practice

Presented by: Joanne Gleeson & Penny De Waele
Organisation: Monash University and Dalby State School, VIC

Educators' effective use of research to contribute to school performance excellence is gaining international attention. However, there remains little in-depth understanding, particularly in Australia, about the ways in which research use can be improved, and the role that collaboration can play in this process.

This presentation is in two parts. First, a model of collaborative research use is proposed based on the Monash Q Project's recent survey and interview findings from nearly 500 Australian educators about what it means to use research well. Second, a senior leader from a Q partner school presents her story of the importance of relationships and collaborations in engaging educators around a research-informed practice improvement initiative. The presentation is aimed to inform school leaders about the different ways in which collaboration can be facilitated to support improved research use within schools.

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
Transforming learning to drive quality and equity

Presented by: Professor Michael Anderson
Organisation: The University of Sydney, NSW

Substantial evidence argues for the role of high quality teaching in  supporting high quality learning for all students. In essence equity starts with the principle that all students are entitled to schools that enable deep learning. The problem is that the “how” to transform to deep learning is often elusive. In this workshop we will consider the use of coherence makers detailed in Transforming Education (including the Learning Disposition Wheel and the Wonder Web) to inspire and sustain a meaningful change in learning through high quality teaching for all students. 

DAY 1: 13:30 - 14:15
VAPA - preparing and supporting the next generation of Victorian principals

Presented by: Fiona Erwich, Kirrily George, Jane Greig-Hancock & Jackie Haines
Organisation: Victorian Aspiring Principal Assessment, Bastow Institute of Leadership

Quality school leadership is fundamental to achieving excellence across the education system and a key factor in lifting student learning outcomes. Education State investments are currently supporting a system-wide approach for identifying and preparing the next generation of Victoria’s principals. The Victorian Aspiring Principal Assessment (VAPA) is an assessment for aspirant principals that advises on the extent of their readiness for the principal role and determines targeted professional development as they move towards the principal role. The VAPA recognises and amplifies the strengths, potential and expertise embedded within Victorian schools. It is also accessible, equitable and designed to meet the system’s demand for high-quality, capable principals. The VAPA has been implemented to:

  • support Victoria’s education system by identifying and preparing the next generation of principals
  • identify and prepare every aspiring principal for the challenges of the principal role by ensuring they gain deep insight into their leadership capabilities and areas for development
  • evaluate aspiring principals’ performance against a framework aligned with the Australian Professional Standard for Principals (AITSL, 2014)
  • give the community and the system confidence that all new principals are ready to lead when they take up a principal appointment.

This presentation will provide an insight into the VAPA as a core feature of the principal development pathway supporting effective leadership in Victorian schools