Our history through the early years and the forming of WAPPA and the annual conference

The Early Years

In 1953, a group of industry thought-leaders identified the need for an association which would bring school leaders together for professional matters. A letter was sent to local schools, undersigned by Norm Elliot, Tom Ward and John Rintoul calling a meeting to discuss this prospect. At this time it was agreed that an association would be formed and so, on 25 November 1953 the inaugural meeting of the 'Metropolitan Association of Headmasters and Headmistresses' would be called to order.

Norm Elliot (pictured) was named as the first President, along with John Rintoul as Vice President. In its initial year the association held its first social dinner, as well as a one day course of professional discussions.

Norm Elliot

Norm Elliot, Inaugural President

Western Australian Primary Principals' Association


Opening of the first WAPPA Business Centre,
1997 Colin Barnett (Minister for Education) and 
Tony Misich (WAPPA President) 

In 1974 the name was changed to the Western Australian Primary Principals' Association, affectionately known as WAPPA.

The first WAPPA conference was held in 1974, an event which has become a significant milestone on education leaders' calendars. From humble beginnings, the conference has continued to grow and expand its offering for members and guests, introducing international speakers and a broad range of exhibitors.

Over the next decade, the membership built to a base of 272 in 1984 and would continue to grow. 

On 28 May 1997 President Tony Misich was joined by Mr Colin Barnett, Minister for Education for the opening of the WAPPA Business and Leadership Centre in Tuart Hill. The WAPPA Management Committee was driven to develop a 'new professional level', excited by the opportunities that their own premises would bring.

WAPPA has sinced moved to the current premises in West Leederville.

In 2014 WAPPA undertook a significant organisational review which culminated in the articulation of strategic work priorities that are aligned with the current needs of our profession. With over 1100 members, WAPPA is in a strong position to service it's members.