National Gatherings and Professional Development Opportunities

2 March 2017 | Author: Bronwyn Jenkins

CSA has a strong emphasis on professional development (PD) at a school and movement level. Throughout the year, our national and state offices organise a number of personal and professional development opportunities for senior leadership, teachers and support staff and the wider membership network. Member schools access professional development at a national, state, regional and local level. PD opportunities include conferences, seminars and workshops, governance training and curriculum days. Together as a movement, we celebrate, worship, learn and grow together.

With Term 1 well underway and Term 2 around the corner, we have a number of key events happening in each state.


National Curriculum Symposium

CSA invites principals and curriculum leaders to attend the 2017 CSA National Curriculum Symposium on 22 – 24 March in North Adelaide. Registrations for this event are closing soon and it will be great to have you join us at this national training event. Schools can register online here.

The Curriculum Symposium will be a ‘Train the Trainer’ event, specifically designed to equip both experienced and beginning curriculum specialists to roll out a Christian worldview approach to Curriculum in Christian schools. The Symposium will spring board off our 2015 Curriculum project God’s Big Story (GBS). GBS is a Biblically-sound model for developing curriculum at the school level and has been enthusiastically received by many CSA schools throughout Australia.

Those who may be new to God’s Big Story will gain new perspectives on how to bring an authentic Biblical approach to programming in their schools. For those leaders who do not have a copy of God’s Big Story, a free copy may be downloaded on our website.

Curriculum leaders will be trained through a series of modules and provided with training materials to then train other teachers and leaders in their own schools. Training modules over the two and a half days include:

Module 1: The Big Picture
What is my worldview? Why Christian Education?

Module 2: Teachers teach what they believe
What is my philosophy of education? What is real, true and of value?

Module 3: Illuminating God’s Big Story in the Australian Curriculum
How do I connect learners with God’s Big Story?

Module 4: Putting it all together: A planned approach
How well do I connect curriculum, pedagogy and assessment with God’s Big Story?

Over the three days, there will also be a number of keynote addresses. Dr Ryan Messmore, Founding Executive Director of the Millis Institute, Christian Heritage College will be speaking on Bridging the Public/Private Divide: Bringing Faith to Bear upon Disenchanted Learning. Dr Daniel Pampuch, CEO of Christian Schools Australia will also be speaking on Towards a Generous Orthodoxy in the Christian School Context.

Learning Object Repository Launch
At the Curriculum Symposium, CSA’s new Learning Object Repository (LOR) is going to be launched by CSA’s Digital Capability Development Manager, Harry Woodward-Clarke. The Learning Object Repository is a data store that will contain digital materials to support school staff to create quality classroom materials with God’s Big Story illuminating the Australian Curriculum.

Symposium Registrations Closing Soon
Registrations for this event are closing soon and I would encourage principals to send at least one representative from your school along. Download a copy of the Curriculum Symposium Program here and Register your school online today.

Christian Schools National Policy Forum and Symposium

The second major national event for Semester 1 is the annual Christian Schools National Policy Forum and Symposium to be held at Parliament House and the Hyatt Hotel in Canberra on 22 – 24 May 2017. The theme for this year is, Preparing the Next Generation for the Future: What is the Christian School Effect?

There is an outstanding line-up of speakers across the three days, including Dr Beth Green, Program Director of Cardus Education at Cardus Research, Canada will be our major speaker on Day 1. In her plenary address Beth will share the latest data from the 2016 Cardus Education Survey (CES) which specifically focussed on the issue of what would be lost to our educational landscape if secular pluralism freezes out religious institutions?

Dr Green will also present a workshop session on Tuesday: The limits of big data, thinking well about school sector and graduate outcomes. She will also anchor the Christian Education Symposium on Wednesday 24 May. An annexe event to the NPF, the Symposium will go deeper into the issue of Redeeming Education: Finding God's purposes in the pursuit of educational excellence.

Other speakers to look forward to hearing from include: Dr John Dickson, Founding Director of the Centre for Public Christianity who is our Dinner speaker at the Celebration Dinner in Parliament House on Monday 22 May. In his address, ‘What has Christianity Ever Done for Us?’, Dr Dickson brings a message of authentic and radical faith which engages culture at its core. Dr Dickson will also share footage from CPX’s latest documentary, ‘For the love of God – how the church is better and worse than you ever imagined.’

We encourage schools to invite their local Federal Members and Senators to the Dinner to hear a thoroughly affirming address about the role Christianity plays in shaping our community. We have a Sample MP Invitation Letter Sample MP Invitation Letter on our website you can use in your communications with them.

Also part of the Policy Forum we will hear from Mark McCrindle from McCrindle Research who will inform leaders on the Contemporary Australian Attitudes to Christianity as well as Barney Zwartz on Religion in the Public Square.

Registrations are now open for the Christian Schools National Policy Forum and Symposium on 22 – 24 May. CSA has negotiated excellent rates for accommodation at the Hyatt in Canberra and also nearby venues that allow for cost effective travel. To book your accommodation and for more information visit our website.


Learning & Leadership Day

ACS and CSA are hosting the first Learning and Leadership Day for Queensland being held on Friday 10 March at Mueller College. This one-day seminar is for principals and deputies, business managers, emerging leaders and other executive leadership staff.

At the beginning of 2017, we recognise that each school will have goals which they aim to achieve over the course of the year. The aim of the Learning and Leadership Day is to spur discussions about how you might bring your school’s vision to reality.

There will be a number of keynote presentations including:

Vision to Reality in a School Context
Michael Gilliver, Head of Humanities, Chapel Coordinator at Mueller College, will present the vision of Mueller Chapel and demonstrate how the vision has been adopted by the school community. Zac Sweetman, Sport Academies Coordinator will share his journey, starting with an idea of Sport Academies and now Muller’s thriving Sport Program. These sessions will unpack how ideas are transformed into realities.

Setting Our Sights Above the Horizon
Dr Daniel Pampuch, Chief Executive Officer of CSA will speak on Setting our Sights above the Horizon. We always need to know who we are, what our story is and where we are going. So how do we as leaders ‘set our sights above’? How does the vision of Christian schooling become best practice? Daniel’s session will centre on the culture of Kingdom education, the building blocks for authentic Christian schooling and the necessity of true partnerships between church, school and home.

Program Details
The Learning and Leadership Day is a free event with the program commencing at 9am and finishing at 2pm sharp! For a copy of the full program details and to register, please contact Michelle Murray at


ACT Principal and Board Chair Dinner

The ACT Christian School Principals and Board Chairs meet twice a year and are hosted by CSA at the Boathouse Restaurant. Each dinner includes a professional development component and on 20 March, Geoff Kelly from ESPC Services will be introducing the new ACT Reportable Conduct System to attendees.

This is a great opportunity to ensure Principals and Board Chairs are fully informed of the latest Child Protection Legislation in the ACT and the Reportable Conduct System plus the training and support CSA/ESPC Services provide.

Sydney Principals Forum and State Meeting

Each year the CSA NSW/ACT office hosts a State Meeting in March to highlight the activities of the previous year and allow members to engage with Council members. This year we will be combining the State Meeting with our Sydney Principals Forum on 29 March at The Macquarie Graduate School of Management.

CSA’s new CEO, Dr Daniel Pampuch will be presenting a Framework for Christian Schools and CSA’s NSW/ACT State Chair, Ian Liney will be presenting the new look State Council. Cass Pendlebury, State Executive for NSW/ACT will be present her State Report and members will have an opportunity for open discussion and questions.

To register for these NSW events please contact Tana Tropea, NSW/ACT Events Coordinator at CSA.



SpecNet is a CSA South Australian Network for Special Education Coordinators and Special Education Teachers, whose role may include Adaptive Education or Learning Support or a myriad of other tasks. We would love to see SpecNet go national and would warmly welcome interstate colleagues with a view to establishing SpecNets in other states.

The next SpecNet meeting is on 17 March meeting at Southern Vales Christian College and the keynote speaker is Julie Vaughan, an experienced Christian counsellor, who will stimulate participants’ thinking around the topic of Teacher Wellbeing in the context of their specialised roles and responsibilities. Other sessions include on Autism SA, Digital Cocaine and The China Project. There will also be informal time for networking and professional conversation.

Further details and a copy of the full program are available on the CSA website or contact Sandra Scott, Executive Officer at


Regional Principal’s Networking Meeting

Principals from regional Victoria will be gathering at River City Christian College, Echuca on 17 March for a time of networking and discussion. Discussion will include regional conferences or networking days for 2017.

For all agenda items please send these details through to the Network Coordinator Chris Aiton

CSA/CEN Summit on Growing Christian Education

A combined CSA/CEN Principal & Board Dinner is being planned for Monday 27 March at Belgrave Heights Christian School from 7:00 – 9:30pm. At the Dinner there will be opportunities recognise and celebrate the achievements of individual schools, to respond to the need for Christian schools in Victoria as well as establish ongoing working groups in city and regional areas.

To register your school for the Summit Dinner, please contact Lisa Benporath at


Leaders Seminar

On 17 March CSA is hosting a one-day Leaders Seminar for existing and upcoming leaders in Christian schools at the Gary Holland Centre in Rockingham WA. Keynote sessions include Christian Worldview with Dr Brian Harris, Principal Vose Seminary, A Generous Orthodoxy and New Horizons for Christian Schooling with CSA’s CEO, Dr Daniel Pampuch.

Registrations are open now and schools can register online here

Business Managers Seminar

CSA extends the invitation to all business managers connected to Christian schools in Western Australia to attend the first Business Managers Seminar of the year, being held on 28 March. The aims of this seminar are to look at best practice of financial management, implementation processes and overall financial heath of schools.

The Seminar includes a devotion at 8:30am and two sessions in the morning. Following the seminar, business managers have the opportunity for informal networking over lunch Sebastien’s Italian Cafe.

To register for these WA Networking & PD events please contact Ray Dallin, Executive Officer WA at


Looking for more assistance and support? CSA has a National Secretariat – a ‘who’s who’ in each state. The National Secretariat Contact Sheet lists the skills, services and support of each staff member nationally.

Download a copy of the CSA National Secretariat here.