Science of Learning Conference

Annie Fogarty was a member of a panel discussion at the recent Science of Learning (SOL) Leadership Accelerator in Melbourne. The SOL Accelerator was organised by Knowledge Society and hosted by the Crowther Centre, Brighton Grammar School. 

One hundred and thirty educators from around Australia attended to discuss and accelerate evidence-based change in effective teaching practice, and how the Science of Learning can be scaled in Australia from niche to mainstream.  

The Science of Learning is the cognitive-science on how students learn and connects learning to practical implications for teaching. It includes how students: 

All educators should be able to connect these principles to their classroom practise. Speakers at the conference included Dr Jenny Donovan CEO of the Australian Education Research Organisation, Pamela Snow Professor of Cognitive Psychology, Ollie Lovell author of Cognitive Load Theory in Action and Tools for Teachers, and Ross Fox Director of Catholic Education (Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn) who is working to ensure their whole system is based on the Science of Learning.  

With Australian students’ academic performance declining and 28% of our Year 7 students not functionally literate enough to be able to access further learning, we need to teach reading with evidence-based practises. This will ensure that at least 95% of our students can read effectively, not just 60 to 70%.  For this to happen, universities will need to base their Initial Teacher Education courses on evidence-based practises and professional learning for teachers will need to focus on developing this mindset and toolkit for present teachers.  

The Fogarty Foundation support the Science of Learning through the Fogarty EDvance School Improvement Program and our Teaching Intensives.  Learn about the Science of Learning here.

On Tuesday evening, Arts Impact WA awarded Reclaim the Void and CinefestOz with the inaugural Arts Impact WA High Impact Grants for 2022. The grants are worth $100,000 each and will support the winners with their regionally based proposals.

CinefestOZ – Broome Festival will be WA’s first Indigenous-focused film festival, co-delivered by WA’s only Indigenous-owned film company, Goolarri Media Enterprises. It will be a flamboyant 4-day celebration of national significance, curated for the unique social landscape of Broome. Film screenings, community events, and school and industry programs will ensure something for everyone.  

During the event, students will be immersed in film through curriculum-linked activities that grow industry-ready talent on both sides of the camera. The event will employ two local Indigenous film officers, engage 12 media professionals and attract 3,000+ attendees. 

Set to launch in November 2022, CinefestOZ Broome will celebrate the importance of on-screen storytelling in connecting communities and fostering reconciliation in the Kimberley and beyond. 

Reclaim the Void is a bold cross-cultural project that will cover a mining pit in northern Goldfields with an enormous textile artwork depicting the story of country. Based on Ngalia elders expressing grief over the ‘gaping mining holes’ on their country, the artwork will be created by stitching together thousands of rag-rugs made from discarded fabric by people from all walks of life.

This project, created by Vivienne Robertson in collaboration with Ngalia Heritage Research Council, is already deeply resonating across Australia and the world, as people, schools and organisations respond to the call for rugs. Forty artists, cultural leaders and an ever-expanding group of collaborators will co-create this shared act of healing and reconciliation. 

In late 2023, the WA Museum will exhibit cultural and artistic outcomes, including stunning aerial images of the installation. 

Four addional finalists including Sensorium Theatre Inc, Annette Carmichael, Verity Leach and Simone Flavelle walked away with $10,000 to kick start their projects.

The Fogarty Foundation is a founding member of Arts Impact WA, supporting excellence in the arts in Western Australia. 

We can build a more resilient and exciting WA through supporting a wide range of small and emerging arts organisations. Now is the time to be supporting creators of the arts and we look forward to doing so through Arts Impact WA.”

Annie Fogarty AM

Find out more about Arts Impact WA and how they are coming together to ignite the arts here.

Michael Burrows, shortlisted for the Fogarty Literary Award in 2019, is one of this year’s Sydney Morning Herald Best Young Australian Novelists. 

Michael is an author and poet from Perth, Western Australia. In 2017, he completed a Master’s in Creative Writing in London, during which he wrote the first draft of his novel Where the Line Breaks

“Getting Where the Line Breaks out into the world has been one of my proudest achievements, especially given the turmoil of the last few years, so this recognition for my hard work and the work of Fremantle Press in publishing the book, is a very welcome feeling.”

Michael Burrows

Where the Line Breaks is both historical fiction and a literary mystery story, originally reviewed in the Sydney Morning Herald as a ‘lively take on the limitations of scholarship and on the unknowable nature of the past’.

Along with Michael, Diana Reid and Ella Baxter have also been recognised for their work. The judges explained that the three novelists stood out for their ‘strong narrative voices, memorable characters and sharp writing – they’ll make you laugh, cry and keep thinking long after you’ve turned the final page.’

The Sydney Morning Herald Best Young Australian Novelist awards were established by former Herald literary editor Susan Wyndham to recognise emerging local writing talent. Previous winners of the award include Alice Nelson, Nam Le, Jessie Tu, Alice Bishop, Robbie Arnott, Michael Mohammed Ahmad, Hannah Kent, Sonya Hartnett, Malcolm Knox, Elliot Perlman, Luke Davies, Craig Silvey, Christos Tsiolkas and Gillian Mears.

Follow the link below to read the Sydney Morning Herald article, Sex, love and footnotes: Meet the 2022 Best Young Australian Novelists.

Image courtesy of Sydney Morning Herald.

With the Federal Election looming and candidates eager to hear from constituents, the UWA Fogarty Scholars joined Celia Hammond, Member for the seat of Curtin and Liberal candidate for the upcoming federal election, for a conversation about education, leadership, politics, resilience and more. This event follows the successful conversation the Scholars had with Kate Chaney, independent candidate for the seat of Curtin.

Celia opened by explaining her upbringing, education and what led her to the world of politics. Celia studied law at the University of Western Australia (UWA), worked as a lawyer in private practice before moving into a career as a legal academic at UWA and the University of Notre Dame (UNDA). At UNDA she had various roles, including Legal Counsel, Deputy Vice Chancellor and in 2018, Celia was appointed Vice Chancellor of the University of Notre Dame, a position she held until moving into politics. Celia has been the Member for Curtin since 2019. 

Celia shared her areas of focus, talking about her Liberal beliefs and values, including:

The Scholars raised a wide range of topics, spanning climate change and the government’s commitment to Net Zero by 2050, how quickly we can reach Net Zero and how the country will do so, the technological advancements of the future and how they will impact the world, addressing the needs of the Curtin electorate whilst balancing the needs of the country, the government response to the COVID 19 pandemic, the development of resilience, how to combat imposter syndrome and whether or not individuals can have ‘everything’. 

Celia encouraged the Scholars to find their driving force and follow their passions. 

“Don’t be afraid to change paths or take a risk, the worst thing that will happen is that you will fall.” 

Celia Hammond MP

Many thanks to Celia for sharing this conversation with the group, and to the Scholars who joined us for the discussion. Communication is key to understanding and assists in all aspects of life. By assisting in the development of successful and respectful communication skills, we are encouraging our Scholars to take part in discussions that will change the future. 

Life’s Lottery:  Backing Kids is a new series of the Paul Ramsay Foundation’s podcast where experts, young people, advocates and policymakers discuss how we can improve wellbeing by putting children at the centre of government policy and budgets. 

The podcast was highlighted in an article in The Australian on Wednesday 30 March 2022.  Authors Anne Holland National Children’s Commissioner and Glyn Davis Chief Executive of the Paul Ramsay Foundation said that, “children’s voices often go unheard in decisions that greatly affect them.”

As an Ambassador for Children and Young People in WA, I agree that we need to change the way we make our policies: For each policy that is discussed, consideration needs to be made in how children will be affected by these policies and decisions. 

Annie Fogarty AM

Jacqueline McGowan-Jones has recently been appointed as the new Commissioner for Children and Young People WA.  The Commission works closely with children and young people, their families, communities and government to make WA a better place for 0 to 17-year-olds.  As well as advocating for children’s rights, they have a range of resources and projects including the ‘Speaking Out Survey’ which last year spoke with more than 16,500 children and young people from all regions of WA who shared their experiences and views on safety, mental health, engagement in education, connection to community and how they access sources of support – www.ccyp.wa.gov.au 

The UWA Fogarty Scholars joined Kate Chaney, independent candidate for the seat of Curtin, for an informal conversation on Wednesday. Kate said she was eager to speak with young people about the issues they are interested in. 

Kate opened by explaining her background and what brought her to stand for a seat in Federal Parliament. She noted that a driving factor was her involvement on the board of Next 25, which is working to ensure that Australia maximises and shares its success across current and future generations, and her desire to play a more proactive part in addressing complex issues facing Australian society. 

Kate believes her diverse career background in management consulting, law and strategy, as well as her senior corporate and not-for-profit roles, will enable her to contribute on several complex matters. She also acknowledged that there will matters she won’t know about. In talking about her decision to take the plunge to stand for Parliament, Kate said that she realised, “you only have one wild and precious life, so just go for it.”

Kate shared her four areas of focus with the Scholars, which were often touched on during the conversation with the group. These include:

The Scholars raised a wide range of topics important to them, spanning the implementation of the Uluru Statement from the Heart and how to achieve climate change through the creation of economic opportunities, to the provision of greater funding for sports beyond those with a high profile, the structural re-adjustment of industries, addressing and reducing the incidence of sexual harassment and gender inequality, to food and water security and homelessness.

How to find candidates aligned with Scholars’ individual values was also explored, and it was suggested that sites such as Vote Compass could be helpful in this regard. Kate also mentioned the site, They Vote for You which allows one to see how your electorate’s representative – or any member of Parliament – voted on various matters. Kate explained that only 0.4% of the population is a member of a political party and 50% of members of Parliament have only ever worked in politics.

The role of independents in Parliament was also explored, and Kate was asked what she hoped might result in 15 years. Three options she suggested were:

  1. Independents could cause the major parties to re-think their approach to various policies and their electorate.
  2. There could be a critical mass of independents, allowing them to work in different coalitions on various topics of interest. She noted whilst this could be logistically ‘messier’ than the two-party system, it could allow the larger, more complex issues to be dealt with more effectively (noting most of the matters before Federal Parliament are complex issues by their very nature); or
  3. The emergence of new parties, providing a viable alternative to the current ‘red’ vs ‘blue’ team, two party model.

The closing discussion centred on how young people could become more involved, with Kate providing several pointers. Whilst not suggesting that young people head straight for parliament, she stressed that, at a minimum, everyone should be thoughtful about their vote, because every vote counts.

Many thanks to Kate for addressing the group, and for Georgie Carey, Fogarty Scholar (2014) and now Deputy Mayor of the Mosman Park Town Council for being facilitator.

Ten of the state’s highest achieving students have accepted UWA Fogarty Foundation Scholarships, including Lawrence Nheu who was also awarded the UWA Fogarty Beazley Medallist Scholarship. Today, we had the pleasure of welcoming them to the UWA Fogarty Scholars family as they enjoyed breakfast at St Catherine’s College. 

UWA Fogarty Foundation Scholarships offer the State’s brightest and most committed students a full scholarship for the entirety of their undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. Scholars are selected based on their academic excellence and outstanding achievements in leadership, community involvement, enterprise, the arts and/or sport. 

Winners of the 2022 UWA Fogarty Foundation Scholarships include Lawrence Nheu, Beazley Medallist (Perth Modern), Ben Scott (Scotch College), Daniel Zhou (Christ Church Grammar School), Peter Bruce (Wesley College), Joel Peiris (Perth Modern), Shantelle Jeyakumar (Woodvale Secondary College), Naveen Nimalan (Aquinas College), Phoebe Dyson (Methodist Ladies’ College), Caleb Adams (Perth Modern) and Josh Snow (Busselton Senior High School). 

Phoebe Dyson said she applied for the UWA Fogarty Scholarship Program because she saw it as an invaluable way to connect with inspiring, like-minded individuals while making the most of opportunities to grow and flourish as a leader. 

“I would love to make a difference in this world, and I see the UWA Fogarty Scholarship Program as a tangible way for me to instigate purposeful change,” Phoebe explained. 

“I am particularly looking forward to meeting other students in the Fogarty Scholars community and immersing myself in the range of mentoring and leadership opportunities that are provided,” commented Ben Scott, 2022 UWA Fogarty Scholar. 

UWA Fogarty Foundation Scholars are provided with $10,000 per annum to assist in university tuition, accommodation and general living expenses. They participate in a tailored leadership and enterprise program, academic mentoring, leadership opportunities, support for initiatives and they become valued members of the Scholars and Alumni network. 

 “By empowering and enriching our high performing students, we are encouraging them to shine, and use their vision and direction to enable positive change in society,” explained Caitlyn Fogarty-Embley, Executive Director of the Fogarty Foundation. 

“We need innovative and inspiring leaders and businesses in WA, which is why the UWA Fogarty Foundation Scholarships continue to be a key element of the Foundation’s work,” she said. 

“We want our brightest students to call Western Australia home, where they can enjoy a world-class education and be inspired to lead, innovate, support and build the West Australian economy.” 

Through the Leadership and Enterprise Program, the Foundation hopes to empower young people to be entrepreneurial creators. Many Scholars have started enterprises and not-for-profit organisations which the Foundation continues to support. 

“The Scholars Enterprise Investment Program supports Scholars as they build their businesses, while enhancing WA-wide support for the next generation of enterprises, growing the number of jobs and diversity of businesses across WA and Australia,” Mrs Fogarty-Embley said. 

Since 2004, the scholarships have educated and supported 176 outstanding young people who are now contributing to their communities, our state and our nation. The UWA Fogarty Foundation Scholarship Program is one of Australia’s premier scholarship programs. You can read about some of the exceptional Scholars at fogartyfoundation.org.au. 

One hundred and fifteen West Australian teachers and 100 students have cut their holidays short, returning to school for the fifth annual Fogarty EDvance Teaching Intensives.

Initiated by the Fogarty Foundation in 2018, the intensives are run in partnership with Dr Lorraine Hammond, Associate Professor at Edith Cowan University, and hosted at Dawson Park Primary School. Each year the intensives have grown, supporting more than 365 teachers to implement high-impact instruction practices. 

The intensive week of professional learning provides early childhood, primary and secondary teachers with the opportunity to observe expert teachers, practise key skills, and obtain feedback and coaching as they finesse their high-impact instructional strategies. Steered by Dr Hammond, the program was created following evidence-based research into how to effectively support teachers to adopt new practices.  

“Research confirms that ‘one shot’ professional learning does not work. Instead, educators can transfer new skills to their teaching practice when they have access to theory, quality teaching demonstrations and have the opportunity to practice instructional strategies with ongoing support, guidance, feedback and coaching,” Dr Hammond explained. 

“We are creating a community of teachers who have developed high-impact instructional strategies they can share with their peers and implement in their schools. By sharing best practice and collaborating with their peers, our teachers will create a ripple effect that will improve the quality of teaching in Western Australia,” she said. 

High-impact instructional strategies integrate lesson delivery and design where content is explicitly taught with frequent checks for understanding. Lesson delivery relates to how content is presented (i.e., read with me) and includes continual checks for understanding by indiscriminately selecting students to take part in discussions. Lesson design refers to how new content is organised, presented and modelled (i.e., Guided Practice followed by Independent Practice). This includes daily reviews of previously learned knowledge and skills to reduce cognitive load and build automaticity. 

High-impact instructional strategies have been used by teachers at Dawson Park Primary School since 2014. The school has seen significant improvements in NAPLAN scores since the inception of these teaching strategies. 

“Our dedicated and professional team use high-impact instructional strategies in all areas of the curriculum. There is low variability in instruction, expectations are clearly communicated and as a result, our students come to school feeling comfortable and confident in their abilities – they know what to expect,” Pauline Johnson, Principal at Dawson Park Primary School explained. 

“We’ve seen significant improvements in student results. Our students perform well above the average when compared to similar schools and they have a positive attitude towards their learning,” she said. 

Georgie Wynne, Program Director at Fogarty EDvance reiterated the importance of innovative professional learning for educators and schools. 

“It is vital for teachers to be knowledgeable about evidence-based pedagogical research so they can develop an innovative ‘toolkit’ for successful and impactful teaching,” Ms Wynne explained. 

“Fogarty EDvance aims to inspire excellence and high-quality instruction in schools by investing in teachers, school leaders and school principals to ensure that all students receive a high-quality education, regardless of their background.” 

UWA Fogarty Scholars participate in a range of programs, conversations and events to develop leadership skills and encourage enterprising mindsets.

On Thursday 23 September, the Foundation hosted an Innovation Panel with Danail Obreschkow, Astrophysicist and Head of the International Space Centre UWA, Olivia Humphrey, Founder and former CEO of Kanopy, and Brodie McCulloch, Founder of Spacecubed. The purpose was to encourage Scholars to have an enterprising mindset and see opportunities rather than barriers, learnings rather than failures and make the most of their experiences and connections.

Danail Obreschkow spoke about his journey, including his experiences at Oxford University and his love of Astrophysics. He encouraged the Scholars to take chances, fuel their minds with inspiration and learn from others through positive connections and conversations. 

Olivia encouraged the Scholars to have a challenge mindset; that is, a mindset that encourages inspiration and excitement when faced with a challenge. She spoke about building strong networks and the importance of having enterprising friends and/or peers to workshop and develop business ideas. 

Brodie shared his experiences as Founder and CEO of Spacecubed. He explained how the organisation was supporting entrepreneurs and innovators with enterprise skill development, peer support networks, innovation workshops and spaces to develop a business. He encouraged the group to try out their ideas, talk to people and make the most of assets like Bloom.

Many thanks to Conor McLaughlin, Fogarty Scholar and young entrepreneur, for moderating this inspiring panel.

We are excited to be working with iyarn, EdConnect and The Salvation Army’s Balga Early Learning Centre. With these new partnerships comes new educational opportunities, improved outcomes and positive collaborations with wide impact.

iyarn

iyarn is a tool that uses simple, purposeful and flexible check-ins to connect people and monitor wellbeing. The check-ins are a safe space to be heard and for personal reflection for users. For schools, the platform is a source of information on individual students, cohorts and wellbeing trends.

The Fogarty Foundation are supporting iyarn’s WA research project in 2021, in partnership through Schools Plus. The iyarn app and platform is used to check in on mental well-being. This project will run the tool in 10 EDvance schools, as a pilot to test and refine the tool, and establish a foundation for adoption on a wider basis for the future. iyarn will be undertaking research on this project to ensure we are supporting schools and students at the point of need.

EdConnect

EdConnect Australia is a charity that trains, supports and places volunteers in schools to improve the lives of vulnerable children. They have over 1,300 volunteers working with over 14,000 students – the majority in WA and expanding in Victoria and NSW. EdConnect provide regular training and development opportunities for volunteers to engage with quality volunteers in a meaningful and purposeful way. 

EdConnect are wanting to develop more training courses for their volunteers.  The Fogarty Foundation are going to support the development of three training modules:

1. An online reading training for volunteers

2. Cyber security education

3. Supporting students with additional needs, developed with Dyslexia Speld Foundation.

The Salvation Army – Balga Early Learning Centre and Family Crisis Support 

The Salvation Army’s Balga Early Learning Centre is an integrated service location with a long day care centre providing early years care, safety, nutrition and education for residents of Balga, Girrawheen, Koondoola, Nollamara and Mirrabooka; suburbs classified in the government SEIFA* index as low socio, vulnerable and complex due to long term poverty, low education, addiction and homelessness etc. The ELC provides early  learning for 50 children each day, from 6 weeks old to 6 years old.

The numbers of children presenting with challenging and complex behaviours is increasing, possibly due to increased substance abuse/stress during pregnancy, trauma, generational poverty, low maternity knowledge, poor nutrition etc. This partnership will allow for children whose parents/families are in crisis, to retain their place at the Balga ELC. Funding for Balga ELC Crisis Support will ensure that children who are at risk will continue to benefit from the ELC, building protective factors and reducing risk factors.

The Foundation has worked in the Balga/Girrawheen area for many years and supported several schools through the Fogarty EDVance School Improvement Program. This is a three-year partnership commitment to supporting the community.