Paul Foley is the faculty learning leader for humanities and has been head of the department for 26 of his 36 years of teaching. This incorporates the leadership, management and support of staff in the subjects of history and geography (Years 7–10) and modern history, geography, economics, business innovation, legal studies and women’s studies (Years 11 and 12). During this time, Foley has contributed to the teaching profession as national president of the History Teachers’ Association of Australia (2016–2020), state president of the History Teachers’ Association of South Australia (2006–2019), and national dhairperson of the Simpson Prize Competition (2011–current). For the past 12 years, he has been a member of the judging panel for the Department of Veterans Affairs Anzac Day Awards Competition.
In recognition of Foley’s extensive contribution to the history-teaching profession, in 2020 he was awarded the HTASA-Educators SA History Teacher of the Year Award. With a great passion and love of the humanities, he has been fortunate to be able to inspire his staff and students in his care to share this love and as a result achieve some outstanding outcomes, including four consecutive years of a Loreto student winning the esteemed title of South Australian Young Historian of the Year as part of the National History Challenge, among other competition-winning titles. Being awarded the 2021 Head of Department Award was a humbling and extraordinary honour for Foley, and he says he regards this award as a testament to the “power of sharing”.
“As a lifelong passionate educator, every achievement and opportunity for professional growth I have experienced has stemmed from simply sharing best practice with my colleagues in the spirit of sincere collaboration.”