Australian Primary Principals Association - Connected Leader: The APPA e-journal for Australian primary school leaders


May 2018

Dear Colleagues,

Welcome to this edition of Connected Leader and Term 2. I hope you all had a great break and found some ‘me’ time. I know many will be focused on getting NAPLAN done, especially those going online.

APPA kicked off with the Gonski Report leading the headlines and lots of media attention. We saw Education Council meet and questions about the future of NAPLAN were raised. A review is in the wind with even one state minister calling for the scrapping of it, and others calling for a change in reporting.

Teacher registration is under review and APPA has provided a submission. Thank you to the principals who could attend the consultation meetings and to those association executive members who completed the APPA Survey. School funding continues to be on the agenda and we await the outcome of the School Resourcing Board review into the formula for capacity to contribute.

During this time, APPA has join a consortium led by the University of Tasmania to conduct a research project and develop a professional learning package on Principals as STEM leaders. I look forward to sharing more information at NAC and inviting principals and schools to join the project.

APPA National Conference

The National Conference is being held in Perth 18-21 September.

We have local, national and international speakers presenting around the theme of Visionary Leadership: inspire and engage. For those who can arrive earlier, we have excellent school tours on the Monday 17 September, covering a range of topics and across all sectors. On the Tuesday we have the annual APPA Forum. This is a great way to interact with other national delegates and have your direct input into APPA’s policy approach. This year’s forum will include finalisation of APPA’s professional Code of Conduct for primary school leaders and policy on school leadership development.

As stated before, the APPA National Conference is the only event focused on primary school leaders. So, IF you cannot attend, send your deputy, assistant principal or aspiring leader. Representation at your national conference is representation of the primary voice: Make your voice be heard and register here.

Gonski Review Report: Through Growth to Achievement

The report is now available on the APPA website. APPA’s media release provided an initial response and also noted that many of the recommendations in the report align with the themes presented in APPA’s submission to the panel. The important aspect in moving forward with reform is the engagement of school leaders and teachers in the development and implementation of the recommendations.

I am particularly pleased to see the acknowledgement in the Report of the key role of the principal as instructional leader and how changes to the role have placed at times overwhelming demands, expectations and responsibilities upon principals without the necessary resources and tools to achieve success. We need to provide trust and support to our school leaders in making decisions about the teaching and learning required for their community.

APPA strongly supports the emphasis on collaboration rather than competition, not just in schools but across schools, as a way of achieving better outcomes for all students.

The report reaffirms the primary school focus on early learning and noted that many primary schools are already utilising the learning progressions in their day-to-day practice. While early days, APPA looks forward to being a collaborative partner with governments and education jurisdictions in progressing the reform recommendations. APPA also recognises that adequate resourcing will be key to ensuring transformational recommendations are embedded in our primary schools. The NAC will work on a more detail response at the next meeting in May.

We look forward to the ongoing conversations and consultations regarding reforms to education. Hopefully, it will be more than climbing international test ladders. Our leaders, teachers, students and parents deserve more. Working in collaboration with schools will achieve greater outcomes.

National STEM Forum Report

As a member of the panel, I reiterated the important role of the principal in any initiative to improve teaching and engaging students in STEM education. The report has a number of recommendations that connect to primary schools. I encourage every principal to share the report or at least the executive summary with staff and the community. While many will have a view on STEM or STEAM, the important point is for all schools to look at how the curriculum and capabilities focus in your school is preparing our students for today’s society.

As part of the National Science and Innovation Strategy, the government has funded a project to support principals and schools in building capacity and competence for STEM related learning and capabilities. The project is called Principals as STEM Leaders and will be led by the University of Tasmania. More information will be provided to schools over the term with a launch in early term 3.

SchoolAid Trust

SchoolAid Appeal for the Tathra Bushfire. APPA thanks the many schools and individuals who have donated to this appeal. We have raised over $31,000. I will be contacting Tathra Public School and discussing with them how this money can help the rebuild and support families impacted by the fire.


Many schools will implement the NAPLAN Online test for the first time. We hope all technology and connectivity works and the experience leads to a better outcome for students. APPA supports a call for a review of the reporting of NAPLAN and a move away from competitive reporting and misuse of results. We need a collaborative environment where all schools are supported and not determined by postcode or background. Our schools should not be treated like an athlete at a sports’ competition.

APPA also endorses the call for assessment practices that support the contemporary learning approach currently in schools. A ‘one-size fits all’ approach is not working for all schools. We encourage principals to discuss with parents the reporting of student achievement and growth.

Teacher and principal work demands

Recently you may have seen or heard the discussion on how many hours teachers are working and should they work more time in school term breaks. It is timely to have this discussion, given the recommendations of the Back to Balance report. How much unnecessary work is being done? Only you can make this call! If you take something on, for whatever reason, then what gets put on hold or dropped all together? A good time to look at assessment with reports due at the end of the term. What is helpful and what is not? How could you report differently, while still providing valuable feedback to your students and parents on their child’s achievements and growth? I was always asking, given the many hours we spend on report comments, that only get read by some, if this is the best use of our time for reporting. APPA will be initiating a review of school reporting. How can school reporting reflect the contemporary teaching and learning approaches being implemented in schools today? How much information do parents want and how do they access reports? And how much do schools need and how much do systems need? Student reporting is just one aspect of our role that is demanding on resources, time and staff. APPA will look to hold a national conversation later in the year.

National Reading Leader Award for Term 2

Scholastic and APPA have announced Lesley Gollan from Woodlinks State School, Collingwood Park, QLD as the Term2 winner. Murray Hawkins form Scholastic will present the award on 28 May at a school assembly. Congratulations to Lesley and Woodlinks State School!

The WoodLinks State School Story - Celebrating reading is important to the community of WoodLinks. As the Head of Curriculum, Lesley is a reading champion who works across the school to develop and implement programs that empower teachers and invites the wider community to support students in practising and enjoying reading.

Clear and constant communication between the school leadership team and classroom teachers to families and students ensures that everyone knows that this is the explicit focus of the school. Engagement in reading has increased and the community feels more connected to the school through reading. WoodLinks opens classrooms every term to parents to observe and participate in reading sessions. This has proved very popular and powerful with parents and caregivers.

Lesley coordinates the daily morning reading club and daily guest reader. Students, teachers and parents are involved in the reading club and students are given incentives to attend each day, such as bookmarks, books and wristbands. At the end of each term, students are awarded a certificate to celebrate their attendance. Guest readers have included the Mayor, local members of parliament, parents, teachers, teacher aides and students. Lesley also works with teachers to ensure that there is an explicit focus on the teaching of reading in every classroom from prep to year 6. Teachers are provided with reading coaches and opportunities to watch other teachers work and are given feedback and support to improve their practice.

As part of the WoodLinks Prep Transition program, Lesley works with parents to unpack all aspects of the reading program to ensure that they can help support the prep students and give them the best start to their education. Prep data has shown a huge improvement in the last 12 months with 80% of students reading at or above benchmark (PM7 or above) at the end of 2017. Student data across the school has shown significant improvements, due to the explicit approach to the teaching of reading across the school.

The success at WoodLinks is being achieved through the efforts of many, with Lesley laying the foundations and supporting every aspect of the journey.

Leadership: Empower others to shine

The Mindful Leader, by Michael Bunting, presents a focus on how leaders can enable and inspire teams to accomplish what we could never achieve alone. Bunting points out that others won’t give their full effort if they think their leader does not care about them or want them to know more about them. The more our leadership efforts are about us, the less effective we are. Kouzes and Posner (Bunting 2016, p111) describe the act of enabling others as (1) fostering collaboration by building trust and facilitating relationships, and (2) strengthening others by increasing self-determination and developing confidence. Research by Kouzes and Posner (Bunting 2016, p.111) shows that, ‘when leaders enable others to act, their people are more than 30 per cent more engaged in their workplace.’ Sounds logical and not new, but the challenge is how do you implement this as part of your leadership approach?

Bunting goes on to describe that with a mindful leader approach, generosity and compassion are key elements to achieve the above. Generosity is moving from command and control mode to coaching and mentoring mode to bring out the strengths of others. We learn to lessen control and to give people space, autonomy and responsibility to step up and contribute more. Generosity is not about giving money or time, but rather about giving cooperation, respect, attention, care and efforts to our colleagues and others. It’s about working to get the best out of others. Mindful leaders practise compassion. This means they have the curiosity to find out how others tick and what motivates them. Compassion is sharing the suffering with or to suffer together. When we are compassionate we connect to others and feel their pain. ‘We surrender to the intelligence of watching and listening, and reality informs us of the next step as we act from our deepest wisdom. Leaders who can act from this place are a gift to their teams and stakeholders.’ (Bunting 2016, p.118)

Leaders share their challenges and acknowledge inadequacies, seeing others as unique and have something to contribute. Through compassion we can foster connection and collaboration. Compassion is not being weak or soft: it enables tough conversations, because we can conduct them without anger and we hold people accountable with transparency and intent. Giving honest feedback, if done compassionately can be the kindest thing we can do for people. Working with people to change and improve their work, builds connection and engagement with the organisation. Leadership is not about being tough or nice. Its both. Bunting believes that leaders working with people can have engaged employees and be seen as caring, collaborative and capacity builders. They hold people and themselves accountable. This empowered accountability does not operate with fear, anger or compliance, but with awareness and clear agreements. Agreements are transparent, and expectations have clarity. Leaders share the goal of what the organisation is trying to achieve. People know their role and are accountable for their performance and the performance of the organisation. They become empowered to solve problems for themselves. The reality is, as Bunting (2016, p.132) states, ‘the more we help others to shine, the brighter we all shine together.’

Best regards,

Dennis Yarrington
President, Australian Primary Principals Association


Are you a Masters student looking for a research project to help principals?

Michael Hawton, psychologist and teacher, who runs the Tough Conversations workshops nationally (see registration form) is seeking an educator who is currently undertaking a higher degree to evaluate the impact of professional development in reducing principals’ stress levels. The research would need to be done ‘at arms’ length’ from the programme developers. There is good anecdotal evidence from the 200+ school leaders, who have already completed the program, that it is benefiting members of our association. But, it is important to build the evidence base. There may be some opportunity to liaise with Associate Professor, Phil Riley, who is willing to discuss any design issues. So, if you’re looking for a topic and you want to do some applied research, please contact Michael Hawton on 0422 214 430. Michael can describe the topic and its parameters.

INSPIRING STUDENTS TO READ MORE, and helping them find the books they will love to read, takes a combination of dedication, inspiration and engagement. We know you bring the dedication to work every day and with our ‘Reading Leader’ portal we hope to help with both the inspiration and engagement to get more kids reading and kids reading more.

At Scholastic we encourage the borrowing of brilliance and through our “Reading Leader Award’ we are seeking out the very best for you to borrow from. Scholastic and APPA are providing a platform to recognise Reading Leaders across the country, so that their ideas and efforts can reach more students, and remind us all to help children every day with their reading journey.

Visit our “Reading Leader” portal for reading programs, professional resources, brilliant book suggestions and more. NO COST offerings, all designed to help you be a better reading advocate and connect your students with books they will love to read.

APPA and Scholastic announced the National Reading Leader Award recipient for Term 1. This is to acknowledge the commitment of school leaders to improving children’s reading. Congratulations to Sandra Hodge-Neill from Hawker Primary School (ACT) and Principal, Mandy Kalyvas.


Under the spotlight

May 2018

Leah Martin

NEWSPAPER. This story affirms the deep enthusiasm many principals have for their work and school communities. ‘For me, it is time for a new challenge and a new school. I’m thrilled, excited and am looking forward to being a part of the Pambula Public School community,’ said this principal of her move to a new school.

Kim Keipe

The principal of St Hilda’s Anglican School for Girls, in Western Australia, has been appointed as the new principal of Somerville House, in Brisbane. Kim Keipe will commence her new position in January 2019.

Margaret Anderson

After stints as a classroom teacher, principal and boarding school coordinator, Sister Margaret Andersen recently said goodbye to the 30 children at St Finbarr’s Primary School, in rural Queensland. Her departure marks the end of the school’s association with the Sisters of St Joseph, who first arrived in the town in 1950.

Denise Gersbach & Nick Baird

Nick Baird has just commenced his role of acting principal at Holy Family Primary School, in rural NSW. The school’s former leader, Denise Gersbach, recently accepted a new role in the Wilcannia-Forbes Diocese, becoming the area’s ONCE/Compass specialist.

Thembekile Ndlovu

Congratulations to the president of the South African Principals Association (and principal of Khanyanjalo Primary School), who has just completed a Masters of Business and Administration.

Locally made ethical school wear

Through their own procurement policies local schools have the power to support an ethical Australian clothing industry and help prevent the exploitation of workers. There are local school wear manufacturers who are committed to making clothes locally the right way.

Ethical Clothing Australia is responsible for accrediting local clothing and footwear manufacturers to ensure that their workers are receiving their legal wages and entitlements, and working in decent conditions.

To find out more contact Ethical Clothing Australia to ask how we can assist your school to source ethically accredited school wear.

Phone: 03 94190222

Learning curve

May 2018

How good leaders become great

In this video, Mitchel Adler discusses emotional intelligence and how good leaders use it to their advantage.

Simplification is the key to change

We spend our days drowning in mundane, self-created complexities that prevent us from getting to meaningful work. In this presentation, Lisa Bodell explains how to spend more time on valuable activities.

Non-predictive decision-making

Decision scientist Nidhi Kalra challenges us to move away from making decisions by trying to predict the future, and towards making decisions that will accommodate many different possibilities. A robust solution leaves everyone satisfied, she says.

Nodding strategies for meetings

Deliberately use these body language strategies to non-verbally communicate your responses in a meeting.

Effective disarming techniques

This presentation demonstrates how to properly disarm someone who is legitimately angry, without becoming defensive and making them feel worse and even more confrontational.

Written by internationally recognised school and early education experts, Your Child's First Year at School: Getting off to a good start, is highly valued as a home and school resource which provides excellent advice to parents, teachers and all interested in giving childrenthe best possible start at school. Order at:

Legal eagles

May 2018

Challenge on school renaming

A prominent lawyer has agreed to help a WA community to challenge the renaming of a school. The decision to change Serpentine Jarrahdale Grammar School to Court Grammar was made by the board in February.

Malka Liefer

A former Melbourne principal wanted by Australian police on 74 charges of child sex abuse will face extradition proceedings this month, a judge in Israel has ruled.

Parents’ lawsuit dismissed

A US judge recently dismissed a lawsuit by parents of two of the 20 grade 1 children shot at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012. The parents claimed that the school’s security procedures and measures were inadequate. One criticism raised was the fact that classroom doors could not be locked from the inside, which would have prevented the entry of the shooter.

Legality of raising independent children

In this article, the mother of an eight-year old child who walks to school alone relates how an evening call from British Columbia’s Ministry of Child and Family Development left her wary of state authorities.

Protection of Gallipoli trees

The WA Government has been asked to intervene in the proposed removal of some trees that were grown from seeds obtained from the Gallipoli site, in Turkey. The site is required as a student drop-off zone for a yet-to-be built school in Perth.

PR1ME Mathematics—based on the world’s best practice used in Singapore PR1ME has been developed by Scholastic in collaboration with the Ministry of Education in Singapore.

How does it work? PR1ME: explicitly and systematically teaches the problem solving processes and strategies; uses consistent and carefully structured pedagogy; takes a carefully scaffolded, deep-dive into conceptual development; actively involves students in metacognition; and provides professional learning for teachers.

Challenge your thinking

May 2018

Increase in mental health admissions

The Murdoch Children's Research Institute in Melbourne found mental health presentations tripled for children aged between 10-14 and 15-19 between 2008 and 2015. The study followed young people from birth to the age of 19, and is the first in Australia to examine trends in children's health presentations to Victoria's emergency departments. What does this mean for schools?

Inequality in Australian schools

In late April, the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA) published a report about inequality and its negative effects for people and society in general.

Rise of Prince Boofhead

In this article, well-known child psychologist Michael Carr-Gregg talks about the rising number of boys suffering from weak and overly child-centred parenting.

Predicting autism

A recent study from Boston University, Harvard Medical School and Boston Children’s Hospital suggests that electroencephalography may help doctors diagnose autism earlier. Ideally, children are diagnosed with autism before three-years-old and have already started appropriate therapies before they turn four.

Population boom expected

Australia's population is set to explode due to overseas migration, with Victoria recording the strongest growth in the past year. Increasing population, particularly in Melbourne and Sydney, will have implications for schools.

For 40 years, Scholastic Australia has been partnering with schools across the country to give kids access to books they want to read through Clubs and Fairs. In 2012, Scholastic gave Australian schools over $11 million worth of Scholastic Rewards. To find out how you can spend Scholastic Rewards on resources and save your budget, visit

Balancing act

May 2018

The best diet for humans

If you’ve ever failed on a weight loss program, it may be that the plan was not optimal for your unique biology. New research explains why some individuals on a particular food management plan struggle to lose excess weight while others, eating identical meals, stay lean and fit.

Resilience: crack your shell

Heather Warman shares the idea of how to build your resilience by sharing a personal story.

The value of doing nothing

Mindfulness expert Andy Puddicombe describes the transformative power of refreshing your mind for 10 minutes a day, simply by being mindful and experiencing the present moment.

Three ingredients to good sleep

Dr Kristin Buhr provides strategies that can help you in your efforts to achieve a better night's sleep.

How to stay calm consistently

This presentation provides some strategies that will enable you to remain calm in stressful situations.

Camp Australia delivers after school care solutions, building on the educational experience of school communities. As the nation’s leading after school care provider Camp Australia has partnered with school communities for 25 years, adding value by delivering high quality care, well-trained staff, systems and support. Find out how Camp Australia will add value to your school community at

Something different

May 2018

A community hub

Wilmot Primary School, in country Victoria, employs speech and play therapists, as well as family liaison officers for the school’s Arabic and Afghan students. It also runs a scholarship program, linking students with members of Shepparton’s professional community.

Voluntary male circumcision

This congratulatory report on an award-winning health program at a Namibian primary school may astound Australian readers.

Robots in the classroom

At Glendal Primary School, in Victoria, a 30-centimetre robot is helping to improve students’ speaking and listening skills.

Fingerprint scans for students

The Ho Chi Minh City Public Transport Management Centre, in Vietnam, has launched a pilot programme to use fingerprint scans on school buses to enable schools to better manage student transport.

Using student voice to improve school culture

Since 2013, Butler College, in Perth, Western Australia has invested in creating a ‘culture’ of continuous learning and development for all of its staff including teachers, education assistants, cleaners, gardeners and other support staff.

KidsMatter Primary is a proven mental health and wellbeing framework for primary schools. It provides expert knowledge, tools and support to help schools grow healthy young minds and care for children’s mental health. KidsMatter is backed by the expertise of Principals Australia Institute, beyondblue and the Australian Psychological Society.

My word

May 2018

Gabrielle Stroud

‘Rather than bravely stepping into the 21st century of education and removing layers of standards and assessment, Gonski 2.0 is just another re-badged industrial model still obsessed with assessment, accountability and academic achievement,’ says this writer, novelist and former teacher.

Robert Bolton

‘The review of education excellence led by David Gonski has found that privileged schools have led the dramatic decline in test results for Australian students along with up to 30 per cent of primary schools where teachers have allowed students to "cruise".’

Mei Ling

‘I have seen the catastrophic ramifications of over-sheltering your children from the world,’ says this Queensland critic of home-schooling.

Stephen Breen

‘The problem is NAPLAN is now so high-stakes. It's out of hand, basically teaching and learning is secondary to NAPLAN,’ says this former WAPPA president.

Tiff Lawrance

'I believe there are way too many restrictions placed on children these days and it's unfair,’ says this Queensland parent in response to the discouragement, by some schools, of active play before school.

Academy Photography are proud sponsors of the Australian Primary Principals Association. Academy Photography services include school photography, yearbooks, complete printing and educational solutions using latest technologies.

Call 1800 816 224 for your SPECIAL OFFER as an APPA member.

Money matters

May 2018

Record windfall for Victorian schools

More than 130 Victorian state schools will share in a record $483 million for much-needed repairs, renovations and upgrades. The latest big money pre-announcement from the state budget brings the full amount to be allocated to school infrastructure to $1.25 billion.

The zoning spend

Some parents are spending vast sums of money on strategies to ensure their children are able to attend a preferred government school.

Budget extension opposed

A number of secular groups are opposing the Coalition’s decision to extend the school chaplains program in the 2018 budget. The recently announced Federal budget confirmed that the national government will give $247 million over four years to continue the program, which includes school pastoral care roles for 3,000 chaplains recognised by religious groups.

Fundraising inequity

This article focuses on the unequal ability of schools to raise extra money and argues that adequate financial provision for all would free parents to be involved in schools in a much more meaningful ways.

Run, Geordie, Run

Students in schools around the world have been inspired to raise funds for charity by a visit from Mark Allison, who is running around the world with a buggy attached.

Catholic Super has been providing outstanding superannuation and retirement services to members and employers for more than 40 years. As a leading industry super fund that anyone can join, we offer award-winning superannuation and pension products, long-term superior investment performance, a broad range of investment options and competitive fees.

Love the job

May 2018

Anthony Hockey

Principal, St Paul’s Catholic Primary School
Nightcliff, Northern Territory

Describe your current school, its students, the demographics of your school community, and any special challenges and/or strengths.

St Paul’s Catholic Primary School is a very multicultural urban school in Darwin. Heat is our greatest challenge, with every day of the year basically above 30 degrees. The student and staff populations are very transient, with very few of our students going all the way through school. The school has a great community, with everyone relying on each other as they do not have much family support.

How many years have you been a school leader?

I have held leadership positions in schools for around 20 years.

What motivated you to become a school leader (and when)?

I think the chance to make a difference motivates me as a leader. I became quite passionate about student wellbeing and that has driven me throughout my career and into leadership.

What was your first leadership role, where was it located, and what were some of your early challenges as a new leader?

My first leadership role was as a behavioural management team leader at a college in Alice Springs. I was quite an inexperienced teacher, leading a more experienced group, so that had its challenges. Also, I had a senior staff member who was not very supportive. I remember one meeting where that person corrected student work as I was reported what our group had been doing.

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NEW resilience and wellbeing program

Dusty and Friends is a great resource for learning and building resilience in children. Game ON highlights the importance of being calm and prompts children to see how consequences result from actions. A popular resource in Early Stage 1- Stage 1 classrooms, children identify and relate to different characters. The program aligns with the Australian Curriculum and works well for Stage 3 in a peer support model. Available for immediate download through the School For Living website.

Love the job

May 2018

Anthony Hockey

Principal, St Paul’s Catholic Primary School
Nightcliff, Northern Territory

(continued from previous page)

As a new principal, what was the most useful lesson you ever learned from a more experienced principal colleague?

The best advice that I received was, you cannot micro-manage everyone and you have to let people make mistakes. I had another principal advise me that everything takes time.

What makes you smile at work?

Greeting the students at the start of the day, I love how they come to school every day, excited.

In managing your staff, what are your most valuable skills and beliefs?  What should beginning principals strive to avoid in this area?

I am quite often described as calm, so remaining calm is something I am usually able to maintain. I am also a bit lateral in my thinking, so I can be open to trying most things. I am a strong believer in team and we have made a real effort to work in teams across the school.

What was the best day you ever had as a school leader?

I don’t know if I have one that stands out more than others, but we had a great day at school the other morning when we had a Ride to School day a week after Cyclone Marcus. We were the official school for the Northern Territory, so we had a lot organised. Police, neighbourhood watch and the army were involved and pancakes were cooked for all the families. Cyclone Marcus had caused damage everywhere, but we ended up having the most bikes we had ever had on a Ride to School day. Our students and families just showed their resilience. There was just a great buzz in the air.

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Love the job

May 2018

Anthony Hockey

Principal, St Paul’s Catholic Primary School
Nightcliff, Northern Territory

(continued from previous page)

What was the toughest day you ever had as a school leader?

Attending the funeral of one of the mothers of one of our ex-students, that was tough. Seeing the sadness in those students’ eyes was heartbreaking.

What was the funniest single thing that ever happened to you as a school leader?

Going to a community event where free bikes were given out to under-privileged kids from the local schools. Unfortunately some of the bikes got stolen during the event by some other under-privileged kids. Although I should not laugh, it was quite funny.

What tips would you give new school leaders about staying positive and keeping their energy levels high?

I had great advice this week from someone this week: ‘Focus on the end game.’ That helps when times are tough.

If you could name just one thing that kept you going to school every day, even on the really difficult days, what would that be?

Students. Despite all the difficult HR moments, difficult conversations, and so on, I quite often tell myself that I am in there fighting for the students. So, if I get a little wounded on the way, I am there for a greater cause.

How do you achieve (or are trying to achieve) a positive work-life balance?

Networks. I have a professional network, family network and social network, although they do cross-over at times. It is important to keep connected to people for different reasons.

What special measures do you take (if any) to protect and nurture your own health and welfare?

I only read emails at school and advise my staff to, as well. I let my community know, as I found I was reading emails just before I was going to bed and then I would not sleep. My school board was very supportive.

What do you see yourself as doing with your life after the principalship?

I can see myself getting into an advocacy role. I have a huge passion for supporting students from poverty and giving them a better chance.

Anthony Hockey
Principal, St Paul’s Catholic Primary School,
co-Vice President of the Australian Catholic Primary Principal Association,
Australian Primary Principal Board Member
Nightcliff, Northern Territory


Managing Editor, APPA 'Connected Leader'

Debra J. Crouch
Mobile: 0413 009988

Connected Leader

Connected Leader Copyright ©. Australian Primary Principals Association 2016. This whole publication, created as a deliberately selected compilation of internet-based resources, may not be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without the prior permission of the Australian Primary Principals Association (APPA).

Connected Leader is an official publication of the Australian Primary Principals Association. In close collaboration with APPA, Connected Leader is designed, produced and edited, specifically for APPA members, by Debra J. Crouch, Managing Director of straight to the point, to enhance the professional learning of Australian primary school leaders.


The opinions expressed in any of the internet-based resources accessed by links from Connected Leader, belong entirely to those who created those resources, and do not necessarily represent official APPA views and policies. At times, links to some resources may be deliberately selected to reflect the wide range of views held by Australian primary school leaders, and the views therein may be subject to debate in some sections of the education community. Readers are advised that, in the interests of brevity, not all of the available personal opinions or information about a particular event, development, issue or policy direction may be published in resources made available through links in Connected Leader. Interested readers who require more comprehensive information, or who seek the opinions of all stakeholders, are advised to directly contact the institution/s or persons cited in the resource/s or conduct their own private research.

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