Teachers gear up for major professional development event

Teachers gear up for major professional development event

One of the biggest contributing factors to Australia’s school workforce shortages is teacher burnout driven by unsustainable workloads, and the feeling by many teachers and leaders that they are not properly supported.

Between 14-15 June, Australia’s largest K-12 curriculum-focused education event will connect teachers and leaders with critical professional development opportunities that can help them thrive in their roles.

Now in its eighth year, the National Education Summit aims to provide the highest standard of professional development across key themes in the K-12 education sector and to ensure that participants have the latest, most innovative and relevant learnings to build their capacity as educators.

Marie Kinsella, CEO of the International Expo Group – the organisers of the National Education Summit – said the Summit offers a comprehensive programme that speaks to the complexity of the work that teachers do.

“While the agenda includes paid conferences, the Summit also includes an exciting line-up of free interactive workshops and seminars, all of which qualify for professional development hours, as well as a free exhibition that features over 100 exciting brands,” Kinsella said.

“A highlight for this year’s event is the opening address by Donna Wright, Principal, Bandiana Primary School.”

Wright will explore the advantages of identifying high-potential students while they are in primary school and extending them through the appropriate educational opportunities.

Free workshops and seminars add value for Summit attendees

Three theatres will feature a program of free sessions that include:

•             The Classroom of the Future:

This program is designed to help educators and schools develop, plan and conceptualise what classrooms might look like in 1 to 5 years from now. Sessions will explore a range of topics, from creative thinking and STEM education to AI, coding and neuroscience. 

“This program brings together a number of highly-regarded thought leaders in the education and technology fields, who will guide attendees in the development of new skills, problem-solving capabilities and cutting-edge techniques,” Kinsella said.

Key speakers include:

  • Dr Shyam Barr, Professional Associate, University of Canberra, and Louise Wallace-Richards, Assistant Principal Teaching and Learning, Radford College
  • A/Prof Ben Cleveland, Principal Research Fellow, The University of Melbourne
  • Sandra Boicis, STEAM Leader, St Columba’s College
  • Julian Ridden, AI Educator, Quizizz
  • Dr Mark Williams, Professor, Macquarie University
  • James Forscutt, Banqer High Activation Manager, Banqer
  • Lora Blackman, Education Innovation Practice Lead, Datacom
  • Lena Cirillo, Executive Officer, Art Education Victoria
  • Building Digitally Capable Learners with Grok Academy

The experts from Grok Academy (an Australian e-Learning specialist) will share strategies, across the two days, for teaching everything about Digital Technologies and Digital Literacy. They’ll also explore design thinking, digital technologies assessments and coding (among others).

“This program really dives into digital technologies in the classroom – including how generative AI works – to help teachers develop students’ digital skillsets,” Kinsella said.

•             The Knowledge Centre

Featuring an exciting line-up of teaching experts, innovators, and learning specialists, this program, held on the Knowledge Centre stage in the expo, covers topics including inclusive leadership, literacy for struggling readers, Behind the News and positive digital citizenship, as well as teacher wellbeing.

Key speakers include:

  • Venesser Fernandes, Lecturer Educational Leadership Studies, Monash University
  • Amelia Mosely, Journalist, Reporter, Presenter Behind the News, ABC
  • Shelly Michalke, STEM Leader, St Patrick’s Primary School
  • Ganga Giri, Managing Director, Didgeridoo Australia
  • Jeremy Kalbstein, Teacher, and Dr Dvir Abramovich, The Anti-Defamation Commission

“We are so excited by the range and relevance of the topics covered in these free sessions, and the quality of the material being presented,” Kinsella said. “We have attracted some of the most sought-after specialists in education, psychology, technology and learning, to share cutting-edge research and trends, practical tips and best practices.”

Registration for these workshops is free, via the National Education Summit website.

The official exhibition of the Summit, The Education Show, rounds out the education program and presents the latest innovations, services and tools for teachers, schools and classrooms.

“Over 100 exhibitors have signed on for this free-to-attend exhibition, and will showcase an extensive variety of solutions and services,” Kinsella said.

“With the line-up of top-quality content on offer through the free workshops and seminars, in addition to a jam-packed exhibition, the National Education Summit is not to be missed.”

Further paid conferences including the new AI in the Classroom and Sustainability in Schools conferences are also available, with more information available on the website.