Membership News


I would like to welcome the following members, who have joined WAPPA in the last fortnight:

  • Serena Gosnay, Banksia Park PS
  • Nicole Waters, Bertram PS
  • Sarah Tuckfield, Bertam PS
  • Amie Hedges, Kinross PS
  • Claire Barbosa, Weld Square PS
  • Lara Govers, Woodlupine PS

We look forward to providing you with the Support, Advocacy, Leadership Development and Connection for which WAPPA is renowned. Likewise, we welcome your voice to the ongoing discussion around primary education and school leadership, through the numerous avenues provided to our members.

We learned this week of the passing of retired WAPPA member and previous Board member, Russel Stranger.  Russell will be remembered not just for his work as a WAPPA Board member and a respected principal, but also as the founder of developing partnerships and sponsorships between WAPPA and business. Russell had several country postings before taking up a position in the Barnett government administration, in the mid nineties. Our condolences go out to Russell's family, friends and colleagues at this time.

It is with a sense of sadness that I advise members that Dean Finlay has stepped down from the WAPPA Board, due to personal reasons.  Dean has been a WAPPA Board member since 2017 and Vice President since 2020.  During this time, Dean has been pivotal to the Association's success, in his roles as Conference Convener and AGPPA National Council representative, at a national level.  He has coached aspirants, designed and delivered PL and contributed a great deal to WAPPA publications and position papers.  On behalf of all WAPPA members, the Board and Business Centre, I would like to thank Dean for his contributions and commitment and I know we will continue to see him at conference and other WAPPA events.

At our Board Meeting last week,  Mel Sutherland was elected to the position of Vice President and Emma Bancroft, elected onto the WAPPA Executive Committee.  Mel & Emma will hold these positions until the end of the year, when an election for four board positions and one Vice President position will take place, for a 2024-2026 tenure.

Melanie Sutherland
Vice President
Emma Bancroft
WAPPA Executive

In the last edition of WORDS, I indicated that APPA President, Malcolm Elliott has retired from his role.  Today I can advise members that Angela Faulkenburg, President of SAPPA, has been elected into the role of APPA President.  A full media release can be found here.

Advocacy & Support

State Assembly was held over the last two days, with Chapter Chairs and Board members from across the state, descending upon the Business Centre to engage in both WAPPA business and hear from Department senior leaders. A significant amount of work was done to progress ideas for ongoing advocacy efforts around school leader health and wellbeing, GROH, students with complex needs, reducing 'red tape' and tackling specific Chapter Issues. We were fortunate enough to be joined, for part of the time, by Jim Bell D/DG, Milanna Heberle, Executive Director System Response and Transformation, Kevin O'Keefe, Principal Advisor and  Stuart Percival, Asst Executive Director Professional Capability.

Chapter Chairs will receive a State Assembly Report in coming weeks, which will include all the powerpoint presentations from across the two days.  Chapter Chairs often include any of their own notes from across the two dates, so that all members can receive the information and direct any questions to the Chairs, or Board links. 

Yesterday's West Australian once again raised the issue of violence in schools, where school staff were unfortunately 'caught in the crossfire'. Coincidentally, this topic was already scheduled for discussion at State Assembly on Day One. Whilst we take the notion of acts of aggression against staff and school leaders very seriously, WAPPA Vice President Ash King presented a somewhat tongue in cheek comparison of the AFL concussion protocols, substituting concussion for assault, player for school leader and AFL for employer and so on. 
It made for very sobering reading, leaving members wondering why if a school leader is assaulted, they aren’t required to leave the field of play (the work site), only returning once a qualified medical practitioner has assessed them as being fit to return?
Quite sadly, most people in the room agreed they were unlikely to leave the school site at all and would be at work the next day not wanting to 'let their team down' (just as an AFL player would feel). This is partly also due to having to complete a raft of paperwork and implementing multiple risk plans to ensure the rest of the team/school is safe.
This discussion was very well crafted and allowed members to further discuss their concerns regarding safety in the workplace, when joined by senior leaders on Day Two of State Assembly.
Sadly, as was pointed out in yesterday’s paper, just as concussions are likely to continue in AFL, so too is violence in schools; no matter how good the club/school, team/staff, coach/principal or CEO/Director is.  Another point that will be quickly offered to debunk the idea of school violence protocols and leave, is that employees have access to workers’ compensation.

However, the main difference is that workers' compensation is employee/player initiated (the employee/player decides) while a concussion protocol is a rule or directive enforced by the AFL (the employer decides and implements safety precautions for their employees), taking the decision out of their hands, in the best interests of all. 

Perhaps in all of this, there is a greater message at play. Perhaps, just like we are starting to break the stigma in sport and society that it’s OK to put yourself first for the good of the team, school leaders need to feel they can give themselves permission to adopt the same approach.

Earlier this year, WAPPA advertised and promoted the applications process for the Federal Government's Schools Upgrade Fund.  The list of successful schools, was recently announced, with over 80 WA Government primary schools receiving funding.   The full list of schools can be found here.

The School Psychologists' Association of WA Awards for 2023 are now open for nominations.  All relevant information can be found here.

2023 WAPPA Awards & Grants


WAPPA has launched our Awards and Grants Program for 2023, with a number of exciting new changes. In addition to the Aspirant Award and Leading from the Front Research Grants, there are now three new Whole School Leadership Awards;

  • Leadership in Teaching and Learning.
  • Leadership in Wellbeing, Culture and Community; and
  • Leadership in Cultural Responsiveness.

These Awards and Grants applications are now officially open, with an application deadline of Monday 19 June 2023 (Week 9). To learn more, please click the link below.

2023 WAPPA Conference


Single Day Registrations Open THIS FRIDAY
The 3 day registrations are open!

If you have been waiting for the full program before registering for conference, the wait is nearly over. We are just finalising the Conference program of speakers and preparing to open the single day registrations.

Expressions of Interest for concurrent presentations are still open, but they will be Closing 2 June 2023
Concurrent Presentation EOI

Professional Learning


Making the Leap to Deputy Principal   May 29 

We have had a great response to this session which will be happening in a little over a weeks time. 
Now is the time to register if you want to attend. There are only a few more place left so book your place today. 


ISL 2024 / 2025 Cohort - Expression of Interest

WAPPA is seeking Expressions of Interest from those who may be wishing to undertake the ISL Certificate in 2024 / 2025.   This fully online course is a subsidiary of the Ontario Principals' Council. Click on the image to find out more about the program and email Marni Hill to express your interest.

Partner Spotlight - Berry Street Education


WAPPA Welcomes Two New Partners


Teach for Australia are keen to share with our members their Future Leaders Program. We will be bringing you more from them in the coming weeks.


Kiddo was born from world-class exercise and sport science research at UWA. Kiddo can provide online resources and tools that support primary schools.

WAPPA Partners

WAPPA is proud to have the support of the following partners

If you are not eligible to be a member, you can still subscribe to the WAPPA mailing lists to receive information about upcoming events and professional learning, also receive newsletters and magazines.

Archived Articles

View the archived articles here