Monday (17 September)

Click on the speakers page in the menu to the left to view biographies.

School Tours

Tuesday (18 September)

Meetings and AGMs
Registration sign-in opens
APPA Forum
Welcome Reception

Optus Stadium

Proudly Sponsored by Rio Tinto

Wednesday (19 September)

Conference Opening
School Performance
Mercy College
Official Opening
Hon Sue Ellery, Minister of Education (WA)
Ewan McIntosh

How can leadership teams put their school plans into action, and how they might create more opportunities for people in their learning communities to turn their "one day..." dreams for school into "Day One" pragmatic strategy?

Ewan McIntosh shares stories from schools and enterprises his team works with, from all around the world. How can you prevent great ideas slipping between the cracks in the ‘busy-ness’ of school? And how do you really engage your wider community in making great ideas happen? And how do you get your own team to move from ‘distributed leadership' to 'distributive leadership', where your own team, and even students, staff and parent community take permission to innovate? Ewan and his team's experiences will help you make it happen.

Sponsor Message
Camp Australia
Morning Tea
Sponsor Message
Scholastic Australia
Donalyn Miller

School leaders influence school culture, teaching practices, community relations, and student achievement. Building strong reading communities in your schools requires intentional, sustained focus and strategic use of your resources. In this session, Donalyn Miller, literacy thought-leader and motivational speaker, shares strategies and resources for launching and sustaining strong reading communities in your school.

Sponsor Message
MSP Photography
Kapture Photography
Ewan McIntosh

What if using and designing new curriculum was fun, experimental, and collaborative? Using the Australian Curriculum as core ingredients, educators can collaboratively cook-up a storm of innovative and purposeful recipes for teaching and learning.

Donalyn Miller

School leaders influence school culture, teaching practices, community relations, and student achievement. Building strong reading communities in your schools requires intentional, sustained focus and strategic use of your resources. In this session, Donalyn Miller, literacy thought-leader and motivational speaker, will discuss in more depth action and focus areas for sustaining strong reading communities in your school.

Erin Erceg

For one of the most common conditions experienced by children, surprisingly little research has investigated the social, emotional and academic experiences of vulnerable children with hearing loss and the ways these experiences can be enhanced. Children and adolescents with hearing loss are at a greater risk of being socially isolated, perform less well at school and are up to four times more likely to experience mental health issues than children without hearing loss.

The Belong study, being conducted by the Telethon Kids Institute, aims to support deaf and hard of hearing children by engaging them, their families and their teachers in the testing of school- and family-based intervention strategies and resources. New resources for schools and parents have been developed to help, students who are deaf or hard of hearing, build their sense of belonging to school and connection with their teachers and their peers, to enhance their social and emotional development and academic achievement. This session provides knowledge and skills to support children who are Deaf and hard of hearing, as well as practical strategies for those who support them.

Craig Anderson & Alison Wade

In 2016 it was announced that the State Government will be funding, to the tune of $32 million, the rollout of 16 new Specialist Support Programs for Students with ASD. The first of these programs was launched at Gosnells Primary School in 2017, and I was both honoured and privileged to be in the position to lead such an innovative and much needed program in WA Government Schools. Autism is the fastest growing diagnostic category of developmental disorder in children. In 2016, there were over 4000 students with autism enrolled in local public schools. The vast majority of these students continue to be catered for in mainstream classrooms in local schools with support as required. However, a small proportion of these students present with very complex and often challenging behaviours that require more support, particularly with social communication and social interaction skills. The Specialist Learning Program for Children with ASD at Gosnells Primary School caters for 24 students at significant risk of disengagement, underachievement and/or who exhibit very complex and challenging behaviours. The program targets age appropriate academic engagement and achievement with students typically spending some of their time in “homeroom” classrooms undertaking the specialised learning programs and some of their time in mainstream classrooms where they receive additional support.

The Kindergarten and Pre-primary homeroom uses intensive teaching strategies to facilitate learning outcomes so that the students have greater skills for mainstream participation. A focus is also on the development of classroom behaviours to enable maximum participation and independence with Kindergarten students attending the program for four consecutive afternoons a week and Pre-Primary students attending the program four consecutive mornings, and their mainstream Pre-Primary classroom for the remainder of the week. The two homerooms for the Year 1 to Year 6 students use explicit teaching strategies to teach academic skills, and provide teaching and opportunities to support the development of skills such as communication, self-regulation, peer interaction and organisational skills to enable increased involvement in their mainstream classroom environment. Craig and Alison are here to share their journey through start up, identification and selection of students, but most importantly the environment, strategies and programs that work for children with ASD that can be easily transferred to any mainstream classroom.

Johanne Klap

To be a visionary leader requires crisp mental clarity and a focused mind. Our entire nervous system responds strongly to our state of mind, which in turn impacts our well-being and our performance. When we become more mindful we expand our resources, both physically and mentally. Mindfulness is about creating the mental space for ideas and innovative thoughts to arise and be considered. Unfortunately, our ordinary way of seeing is conditioned by old habits and perceptions. This session will explore how mindfulness allows us to respond differently to our environment and gain access to a perspective in which we are more open to different possibilities and creative solutions.

Dr Robert Kay & Dr Chris Goldspink

The goal posts for education are changing. Kids joining kindergarten this year will experience peak global population and a global population crash during their working lives. Within the next decade Industry 4.0, will change the employment landscape forever. Artificial intelligence and advances in robotics mean the types of skills and knowledge our kids will need for the future will be radically different to the way we think about them today.

This presentation describes research conducted over the past 10 years, involving almost 1000 classroom observations that identifies the key opportunities and threats to the development of 21st century skills by our young people. It also highlights key ‘takeaway’ messages leaders need to consider:

  • Ways of using evidence to inform change
  • Maximising the value of professional development
  • How to engage the community and industry
Tom Quinlivan

Visionary educational leadership requires astute, evidence-based decisions with leaders having the ability to balance and embrace the demands of the role with passion and skills to take school communities forward. In this enlightening session, you will know what current literature says about Standards nationally and internationally, discover how to engage successfully with the APST through understanding the unintended consequences of this policy, the daily challenges teachers’ experience, and develop contextually based strategies to move forward. With the endorsement of all Australian Education Ministers, the involvement nationally of over 6000 teachers, countless schools, 120 plus submissions, 4 reviews and evaluations, we now have the Standards. The evolution of this policy in 2011 became a framework to enact in all Australian schools. Several years on and where are we now and where to from here? The findings of this qualitative study provides compelling evidence based data to understand what teachers have experienced with the Standards and where to from here?

Ashley King

In 2016 Google released the findings from an extensive research project (Project Aristotle) in conjunction with Harvard Business School on “what makes an effective team”. This was closely aligned and incorporated the dynamic of psychological safety within teams. Ash has examined this research and correlated the dynamics of effective teams with the day to day realities of working in a busy school environment.

In this session we examine the five dynamics of what makes an effective team and present the paradigms required to foster each dynamic. We will also view 7 truisms that can be used to assess psychological safety in your school and takeaway suggestions on how to foster this in our own teams.

Ecumenical Service
Association Functions

Thursday (20 September)

School Performance
Kinross Primary School
Sponsor Message
OSHClub After School Care
APPA Business
Dennis Yarrington
Matt Church

The simple fact is that the world is changing at an ever increasing rate. Technological advances are creating shifting paradigms in every industry across the globe, and it’s a trend which we need to stand up and take notice of.

This keynote is based on Matt’s latest book, Next – Thriving in the Decade of Disruption. It’s co-authored with Thought Leaders Global partner and internationally renowned implementation expert Peter Cook. In this rapidly changing world, the only certainty is that what works today will not work tomorrow. Old business models won’t work, old leadership styles won’t be tolerated and slow moving industries and businesses will become extinct. The successful players will be the ones with the greatest agility, creativity and foresight.

A session with Matt focused on disruption will help put in place a culture of willingness and a practical framework for being agile, creative and building foresight. If you want to discover how the four business revolutions (R1–R4), and the four personal evolutions (E1–E4) will affect your industry, this is where the journey begins. This is how you future proof your career and business in the decade of disruption.

Sponsor Message
Sentral Education
Morning Tea
Lee Watanabe-Crocket

Today’s students will inherit a legacy of global challenges that we see and read about each day. They will face critical issues that impact our entire planet, along with challenges that we cannot yet imagine. We can empower them to overcome these obstacles for present and future generations now, in our classrooms. In Future-focused learning, we’ll look at inspiring examples of the solutions-focused ingenuity students are demonstrating in innovative learning environments including STEM, inquiry, and PBL utilising Solution Fluency to cultivate ethical, responsible Global Digital Citizens taking positive action and striving together to solve problems that matter.

Sponsor Message
Academy School Photography
Suzanne Waldron

The more explicit leaders can make their conversations, expectations, roles and commitments the better their working relationships get. In leadership capability, the single most potent thing you can do is develop a more explicit leadership style.This keynote explores the touchpoint between implicit and explicit communication. There are points between, where language can infer or imply, and these highly-adopted styles are hindering relationships and blocking business outcomes. Too many working relationships are eroded, and too much time is wasted because of misunderstandings and mistrust.

Sponsor Message
Woods Furniture
Ewan McIntosh

Does everybody in your school understand what the school stands for, from the youngest student to the newest teacher?

Does your school generate an endless stream of powerful stories that help explain to everyone what your school stands for?

Do you know how to gather the right data to create those powerful stories?

Can you identify the things that are getting in the way of telling good stories?

Can you communicate your stories quickly and colourfully?

Do you know how to make your stories matter?

By the end of our first day you’ll be able to answer ‘yes’ to all these questions. BYOS - Bring your own story to get started.

Matt Church

Leaders who can inspire not just inform become leaders worth following. The ability to win the battle for hearts and minds is at the heart of being an extraordinary leader. Throughout history we have asked for three things consistently from our leaders: to replace fear with confidence, confusion with certainty and to mobilise us in pursuit of a better future. This session explores how all leaders are key to creating cultures worth belonging to and achieving work worth doing. A great leader is one who brings greatness out in others not someone who is themselves great.

Lee Watanabe-Crocket

This workshop serves as a professional pathway blueprint to take the great work you are already doing and make it exceptional. Together we’ll learn what we can start doing today to give our children a solutions-focused edge for creating a bright future.

- Discover how to build units of work as a provocation for STEM or inquiry learning

- Learn 10 shifts of practice—activities that transform teaching and learning at the classroom level

- Explore how these shifts and the smaller micro-shifts can provide exciting challenges for your learners and transform your practice

- Learn best practices for essential questions, personalized learning, higher-order tasks, making learning intentions clear, and mindful assessment

- Discover how these shifts form a self-directed plan for meaningful and consistent professional growth

Rachael Whitney-Smith

21st Century developments in neuroscience and our capacity to study the brain has unearthed revelations that directly impact upon us as educators. Knowing that the brain is malleable and grows, that intelligence isn’t fixed and that students are not born good or bad at mathematics and other STEM disciplines can empower both staff and students as well as the greater community.

Data supports the notion that we are not performing internationally in STEM areas as well as we have in the past, especially in higher order thinking. Studies have also revealed that students are lacking resilience, drive and persistence in the learning of STEM subject areas. The culture that surrounds challenge and productive struggle, needs to be nurtured and supported in schools, especially when it comes to students’ STEM learning mindsets.

As educators there are many whole school strategies and ways we can promote a growth mindset in our students. There are also many practices and behaviours that perpetuate the fixed mindsets that are prevalent in society. Pedagogy, assessment and whole school practices need to mutually support each other and be led from the top.

This workshop will address the following AITSL Principal Standards

  1. Leading teaching and learning
  2. Developing self and others
  3. Leading improvement, innovation and change

All students are capable of learning through a STEM approach and all students need to be exposed to learning experiences that encourage the development of STEM skills across the curriculum. STEM education is a pedagogy and a way of thinking which when implemented effectively supports the General Capabilities and develops students 21st century skills that will be required by the workforce of the future.

Sinan Kermimofski & Simon Mansfield

How engaged are your students? Do they sit through hours of ritual and strategic compliance?

The three key pillars of student engagement of Vasse PS:

People- The relationships, the soft skills, developing growth mindsets, up skilling staff.

Places- Developing flexible, adaptable and stimulating learning environments.

Pedagogy- Teaching and Learning models which are student centred and focus on student empowerment.

Participants will walk away with a suite of ideas and understandings on how better to engage students in schools. Administrators will gain ideas and knowledge on how changing classroom environments can increase student engagement, how using OARS and not staying in BED can develop and growth mindset. This engaging and thought provoking presentation will certainly spark ideas and challenge the status quo.

Lesley Englert

Schools require synergy between school leaders and classroom teachers. Creating a 21st century school also requires curriculum and technology to unite in the classroom. Acknowledging the pressures of teaching (from researching, planning, teaching, practice and assessment), school leaders are in the ideal position to support their busy teachers and drive initiatives to benefit the classroom. With a focus on the English curriculum, this session will enable leaders to better implement new technologies that support busy teachers with the day-to-day, so that they can focus on what’s most important – explicit teaching and student outcomes.

Karen Martin

Being 'trauma-aware' is having knowledge about the negative impact of childhood adversity and trauma on physiology, learning and behaviour. 'Trauma-sensitive schools' intentionally incorporate this trauma-awareness into their planning, policies and practices. There is evidence that responding to dysfunctional behaviour in a trauma-sensitive rather than punitive manner is associated with better student outcomes, lower staff stress and a more supportive learning environments. Trauma sensitive practices encourage a school community transformation by generating a nurturing environment. This change also shifts staff and families to develop more appropriate expectations of the students. A trauma-sensitive approach is likely to lead sustained reductions in student dysfunctional behaviours and increased mental wellbeing, attendance and achievements. Trauma-sensitive schools help to change the trajectory for children who are caught in a cycle of dysfunctional behaviour, punishment and outcomes fed by trauma, adversity and a society that supports punishment and retribution.

Wendy Amato

Explore the gaps that exist between the preparations today’s teachers have received and the professional development they need to prepare tomorrow’s leaders. Identify the instructional strategies that are producing the most effective learning outcomes. Investigate existing models for engaging educators in innovative thinking and inspiration.

Lisa Rodgers

On every social and economic measure, people who achieve a higher level of education fare better. This is true across health, financial security and overall quality of life.

There is at best, limited, but no strong, or consistent, relationship between the provision of school funding above a certain expenditure level, and higher student achievement. Teachers and school leaders have seen many reforms in education, and for some of these, the net impact on students has been virtually zero.

There are two things that matter most: quality teaching and school leadership. Both of these are variable in schools across our nation; both can contribute substantially to student learning and we have a workforce that wants to make a difference to the learning lives of students.

This presentation explores both the how and why of this improvement.

Pre Dinner Drinks
Conference Gala Dinner

Friday (21 September)

Sponsor Message
Mindful Meditation Australia
Champion Life
Ewan McIntosh

MC-ed by Ewan, to explore how participants can set about creating a clear objective, and the strategies to reach it. Panel suggestions and Q&A.

Morning Tea
Susan Ledger & Lorraine Jacob

Education is under researched in Australia. Government spends around $20 million a year on educational research grants compared to $600 million a year for medical research. This lack of research about Australian schools, often result in politicians ‘telling teachers how to do their jobs and using schools as ideological battlegrounds’ (Plibersek SBS, 16th Feb). However, in February, 2018 the Australian government proposed the establishment of an independent Research Institute to examine what teaching practices work for Australia’s students.

This presentation has two aims addressing this visionary change. First, it presents ‘what works’ in good schools as perceived by experienced educators currently working in schools and university settings. It draws on AITSLs Professional Standards for Principals to identify common factors inherent in successful leadership and outcomes in WA schools. It highlights the multiple roles required of principals in achieving success and addressing emerging dichotomies; student outcomes/teacher wellbeing; evidence/compliance; theory; practice; play & inquiry/direct instruction; innovation/standardisation.

Second, it calls on school leaders to identify ‘burning issues’ and ‘hot topics’ as starting points for the new research institute. It suggests principals should play a lead role in the new institutes’ research agendas. It also highlights the important role principals play in reducing the perceived gap between theory and practice, suggesting we work differently with universities. An alternative, integrated approach that unites schools and universities is presented.

Libby Jackson-Barrett & Libby Hammond

On Country Learning (OCL) is a visionary practice that draws upon Aboriginal connection to Country. OCL offers schools a process for which Aboriginal cultures and knowledge’s can be at the centre of a school curriculum rather than as a tokenistic add-on. We present a process developed in collaboration with West Australian Aboriginal communities to invite Elders into a collaborative partnership with schools that align with the Aboriginal Cultural Standards Framework. As an approach embedded into mainstream schooling, we draw on the work of Nakata and the notion of learning and teaching at the ‘cultural interface’ (2007). Further, we demonstrate the ways in which non-Indigenous educators can become culturally responsive, rather than merely culturally aware. We will share the design principles and findings of three separate OCL project locations from both urban and remote schools. The examples offer starting points for connection or reconnection to the Country for which your school is located.

Claire Orange

Digital world immersion will only increase and with this now being central to teaching in schools through STEM programs, are we, as leaders adequately preparing children for the yet unknown challenges of this brave new world? Is coding, creating and designing enough – or do we need to start with a SEED? The SEED before the STEM – the Social, Emotional and Entrepreneurial Development of the child. The child who will grow to be the adult who programs the artifical intelligence of the robot who will care for us in our old age. Surely high empathy, relationship skills, great compassion and emotional intelligence are essential skills to cultivate. In this presentation we will cover:

  • Berkeley University’s pivotal study identifying the 3 core components of the entrepreneur – a framework for learning, a network to support the learning and a mindset to power the learning.
  • How to prime 21st Century learners with the skills needed to enter the digital world in each and every lesson taught.
  • How to help children to achieve the resilient mindset of the entrepreneur – bouncing forward from the inevitable challenges of making mistakes and having to persist, give effort and think laterally.
  • The importance of moving beyond the teaching of tech-ready skills into tech-ready mindset as a positive adaptation to the demands of future employment not yet conceptualised.

While traditional Social and Emotional Learning programs ready children for the rigours of the classroom and the playground, contemporary conceptualisation demands greater readiness for life, the cultivating of an entrepreneurial mindset and the sewing of the SEEDS for future success.

Liv Pennie, Shannan Judge & Professor Jim Bright

This session provides Principals with a valuable and practical overview of how we, as leaders, can practically use The Future of Work with all it’s uncertainty, as a powerful force for optimism and engagement rather than a constant reminder of all that needs to be fixed.

Liv & Shannan provide a refreshingly optimistic perspective on how the seismic shifts in technology that are disrupting the established patterns of lives and careers can be flipped from scary headlines about robot armageddon to instead, being the greatest opportunity a generation has ever had to design lives that are perfectly suited to them.

This opportunity can only be realised if we arm our young people with the adaptive skills to explore, design and navigate those lives and careers for themselves ongoing.

Mady Colquhoun

The implementation of the Australian Curriculum: Science has intensified Science teaching in primary schools. Many teachers are not strongly trained in the Science process and struggle to teach and assess with confidence. Science Inquiry Skills (SIS) are fundamental to the scientific process and need to be addressed and competently assessed throughout primary school.

Some current assessment tools are disjointed between different year levels, may be difficult to use by those with little or even considerable Science background or may take a lot of time out of the teaching curriculum to administer/assess and record. Some have little correlation with the curriculum or focus mainly on Science understandings (SU) which often depend strongly on the Science context which is presented.

Through our work with the Teacher Development Schools (TDS) program in WA, we have met and worked with many teachers who are asking for a simple consistent assessment process they can use, either as a classroom teacher of Science or a primary Science Specialist, mainly focusing on SIS.

The START tracker offers a practical way to monitor and record assessment in SIS. This tracker addresses difficulties encountered by teachers and Science specialists - including moderation, consistency and keeping meaningful records for future years.

Ron Gorman, Nathan Ducker, Helen Hepworth, Trish Somers

As part of the Penrhos College Junior School's involvement with the AISWA ‘AMPLIFY’ pilot schools program we have established a relationship with Lee Watanabe-Crockett who is an author, (Understanding the Digital Generation, The Digital Diet, Living on the Future Edge, and the best-seller, Literacy is not Enough) speaker, designer, inspirational thinker and the creative force behind some of the most exciting transformations in education today. He is also the founder of the Global Digital Citizen Foundation. The Global Digital Citizen Foundation is a non-profit organisation dedicated to cultivating responsible, ethical, global citizens for a digital world. This presentation will outline the journey so far and engage participants in some of the theory behind these initiatives. Key messages include:

  • How the school is shifting to be more future focused
  • Strategic directions leading to an increase in student and staff performance
  • Proven methods to improve student engagement and 21C skills
School Performance
Hale School
Sponsor Message
APPA 2019 Presentation
Rabia Siddique

As Principals and leaders in education, society looks to you to be leaders, role models and agents for change.

Now more than ever in our lives, schools & communities, we need to display strong character, sound values and a commitment to wholistic education, innovation and creativity.

Great leadership is characterised by those who embody and demonstrate resilience, courage, focus, discipline & authenticity.

This presentation provides participants with the tools and skills needed to make sound, well informed & often difficult decisions under pressure; to inspire & motivate those around you to be all that they can; & to mobilise yourself & others to achieve outcomes & goals that add to the greater good & higher purpose of your profession and life.

Rabia’s story of courage, strength & resilience, & her commitment to truth, justice, equality & authentic leadership, defines her & sets her apart as a sincere, charismatic & remarkable individual. Having battled abuse, discrimination, chronic health problems & trauma, Rabia is more than just survivor. She is a fighter, trail blazer, change maker & an eternal optimist.

By sharing her unique & powerful story, as well as her truths, learnings & expertise as an effective communicator, facilitator, leader & coach, Rabia will do more than inspire & motivate you. She will provide you with the attitude & tools to empower you, free you form that which is holding you hostage, enabling you to display the courage under fire you will at times need, to become the best version of yourself & an agent for change.

Rabia’s goal is simple - to engage you, inspire you & help you to transform your work, your relationships and your life - to be the change you wish to see!

Concluding Statements
Conference Close


Please note the program may be subject to change without notice at the discretion of the organisers.