23 May 2022


Near 100 new PDHPE teachers came together for the ACHPER NSW 2022 Early Career Teacher Conference in Sydney last week.

“It was fantastic to meet and work with such a great group of motivated new educators,” said Tracy Puckeridge, CEO ACHPER NSW.

“Support during the early years of teaching is vital. This conference was designed to share ideas, advice and support. We were grateful to all the presenters for sharing their knowledge and offering encouragement to build the new teachers’ confidence, skills and support network.

“Big thank you to the presenters, volunteers, our Board and staff for their contribution in making the day possible, along with the Conference partners and sponsors,” said Tracy.

The day began with a keynote panel featuring teachers at different stages of their career:

  • Brooke Garland, Early Career Teacher, Wellington HS
  • Alex Lupton, Head Teacher, Heathcote HS
  • Lauren Andersen, Deputy Principal, Toronto HS
  • Louisa Bailey, R/Head Teacher, East Hills Girls Technology HS.

Each delivered powerful messages to the new teachers, exploring how to go from surviving to thriving in the first few years.

The experienced Alex Lupton outlined practical advice including how to settle into the school context, connect with a mentor or buddy, use the APST, observe, be open minded and ask questions.

New teacher Brooke Garland shared her experiences with great honesty saying “we’re new to this and we’re not expected to know everything.” While Louisa Bailey unpacked her best advice for the early years including to “be all in”, embrace the school and “say yes to what your passionate about”.

Lauren Andersen closed the keynote session and inspired the group to “love what you do”, listen and learn, build relationships, seek opportunity, find balance, have fun and respect your journey.

Following the keynote, the teachers selected specialised workshops to attend, presented by experienced teachers and experts including:

  • Class management tips and tricks, with Pam Williams, PDHPE teacher
  • Quality assessment in PDHPE, with Brendan Jones, Teacher Quality Advisor
  • Planning engaging and meaningful lessons in PDHPE, with Angus Glynne, Head Teacher PDHPE
  • Report writing, with Louisa Bailey, R/Head Teacher PDHPE
  • Parent-teacher interviews, with Rebecca Sammut, PDHPE teacher
  • Planning inclusive theory lessons, with Veronica Brogden, Diversity teacher
  • Inclusive practises in PE, with Sonja Maric, PDHPE teacher
  • Difficult conversations, with Lauren Andersen, Deputy Principal
  • Teacher wellbeing, with Karen Halwagy, PDHPE teacher
  • Teacher accreditation, with Alex Lupton, Head Teacher
  • Student wellbeing, with Huw Blood, PDHPE teacher
  • Planning engaging movement lessons, with Brendan Lee, Assistant Principal

Thank-you to ACHPER NSW sponsors:

  • Tennis NSW
  • RHSports

Thank-you conference supporters:

  • Hart Sports
  • Teachers Mutual
  • Outdoors NSW and ACT
  • Teachers Mutual Bank
  • Positive Choices
  • Anzuk Education

MORE: Read our blog You Are Good Enough: reflections and advice for teachers following the Conference.

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