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From Our CEO

It’s hard to believe that ITEC19 is actually within reach. We began planning this event in 2016 and now we find ourselves ready to experience the result of all of our planning and preparation. I’m reminded again that we can humanly plan and prepare, but it’s God who will have the final say, the final word on what the conference will be like. It’s my prayer that as God is preparing the hearts of those that attend, he has also prepared the thoughts and hearts of those that will present. For those that are unable to make this event, podcasts of the keynote and strand speakers will be released in due course.

May we be deeply challenged and transformed as we seek to re-imagine personally, and collectively, what our practice looks like. From the classroom, to the work shed, to the principal’s office, to the bus run.

As you may be aware, over the past three ITEC conferences, we have built up a relationship with Leishman and Associates who manage professionally, the logistics of the conference. The CEO, Paula Leishman has become well known and dear to us. Recently, Paula was diagnosed with Uterine Ca ncer and has undergone major su rgery for this. Her prognosis is good, but she will not be joining us at ITEC. Other members of her team will be with us. The wonderful thing about this is that we have been able to support Paula through this time, and she has felt very upheld by our prayers and messages of support.

National Conference and AGM
Our annual National Conference and AGM was held in May, and the responses to that time have been very positive. If you would like to engage with the talks from that conference, here are the links to the recordings:


Michelle Dempsey

From Our National Institute Academic Dean

We have recently completed an excellent Semester 1, 2019. Grades are now being finalised and we have begun accepting enrolments for Semester 2.

There are several special events/offerings happening in Semester 2:

  1.  Kickstarter EDU400 Biblical Foundations of Education (all courses) – will be offered 1-3 July at Chairo Christian School in Victoria AND after ITEC in Adelaide 18-19 July with Dr Rod Thompson.
  2. Other Kickstarters during and after ITEC include EDU579 Critical Evaluation of Professional Learning (MEd) and EDU507 Reflective Pedagogy (MEd).
    There is still time to enrol in any of these that will begin at ITEC and continue 
    throughout Semester 2.
  3. NEW SUBJECT: EDU526 Comparative and International Education (MEd and MEd(L)) – The aim of this course is to assist teachers and educational leaders to reflect on their worldview assumptions and then consider the implications of education in cross-cultural contexts. This is to be accomplished by exposing them to education systems and educational leadership practices in different cultural or country contexts. This process will include a brief study of theory related to comparative and international education, reflection and discussion, and practical experience of educational leadership in other settings. These other settings may include cross-cultural sites within the student’s country or, preferably, visiting schools in another country.
  4. UPDATED SUBJECT: EDU546 Equity and Inclusion: Educating Students with Disability (MEd) – This subject has been updated by UTas lecturer and CST Board Member Dr Chris Rayner. Highly recommended!
  5. LEADERSHIP UPDATED SUBJECT: EDU576 Reforming Leadership: Overseeing Change and Continuity (MEd(L)) – taught by Dr Ken Dickens. Also a great subject dealing with maintaining faithfulness to the school heritage and mission while delving into innovative approaches to teaching, learning and leading.

As always, you can enrol for any of these subjects through the Enrolment Portal 

How can you help students of the National Institute in your community?

  1. Encourage staff to embark on postgraduate study – even if they start their first core subject as a ‘non-award’ student to get the ‘feel’ of Masters-level study.
  2. Find ways to provide incentives for study – financial support, time off, and salary increases are just some ways schools do this.
  3. Ask National Institute students how they’re going. They would love your support and encouragement.
  4. Have ongoing scholarly conversations with those that are currently studying or have studied in the past.
  5. Provide spaces for Institute students to share their learning with others at the school – in newsletters, at faculty meetings, one-on-one with leaders and teachers.
  6. Model lifelong learning.


Beth Beech

From Our Governance Coordinator

It is wonderful to see the growth in our school governance capacity and the commitment of so many board members to ensuring quality governance of schools. With strong, capable, cohesive boards, our schools are in great hands.

In recent months the third of our four Board Training online courses have become available (Board Functions). The courses are:

Board Induction – a self-paced online course for new board members giving an overview of the responsibilities of this position.

Board Foundations –  this is a course with 5 modules where we consider the nature of being a board, the attending to the upholding of school vision and values, principles of good governance and board in community.

Board Functions – this course has 11 modules focused on the practicalities associated with being a well-functioning board. For many boards, these modules give clarity around everyday board roles and functions.

Board Life  – The first module of this is ready for you to access. This module looks at “Assessing your Board’s Performance” and is important for all boards to consider.

We would encourage your board to consider working through one or more of these modules as part of your board processes. You do not need to do them sequentially – you can choose topics that are most relevant for your board in its current context.

Don’t forget that CEN is also available to do face-to-face board training. These workshops can be helpful opportunities to have a facilitated discussion about key topics. Please contact your SEO or the CEN National Office for further details.


Kathy Pereira

BOOK NOW Professional Learning

What professional learning are you planning for your staff team for the start or 2020 that is in line with the Christ-centred mission and vision of your school? We are taking bookings now for January and spots are filling fast.

Like to get your whole staff team including associate staff having a solid appreciation and understanding of Christian education?
Foundations: Authentic Christian Education 

Like to have all your staff immerse themselves in the word of God exploring how it speaks to us and its powerful place in the life of the Christian school.
Foundations: Bible in the Belly of the School 

Like to take you teaching team of a journey exploring designing curriculum through the big picture of God’s plans for the world?
Curriculum Design and the Big Picture 

Like to have your teaching team work together exploring teaching practice that flows from a Christian view of the world and learning?
Classrooms and Deeper Learning 
Classrooms and Assessment for Learning 
Classrooms as Grace-shaped Communities 

Transformation by Design: The Big Picture
Curriculum Design and the Big Picture 
Curriculum Design and the Biblical Perspective 

Transformation by Design: Crafting Formational Practice (in production)
Classrooms and Deeper Learning 
Classrooms and Assessment for Learning 
Classrooms as Grace-shaped Communities 

Online courses
Available online for self paced professional learning:
What is Christian Education? 
Foundations: Authentic Christian Education 


Chris Parker

From Our CTJ Editor

Do you have staff members who could write for the Christian Teachers Journal as professional development? A great way of contributing to the wider movement through your staff and gain rich professional learning in the process. CTJ resources can be accessed online.


Online resources

Click here for Submission Guidelines

Click here for an Index of Articles

Click here to read past editions


Chris Parker

From Our Nurture Editor

At CEN’s National Conference and AGM our member schools had the opportunity to commit to, and affirm, the Belonging to CEN document. The purpose of Belonging to CEN is that through it, each member school is reminded of our identity together. Each member schools is reminded that they are not alone. As each member refreshes their commitment, they realise that what they do in their school setting can impact all of us together.

Engaging well with Nurture as a school is one such an outworking of this commitment—while also serving the same purpose of reminding and unifying. Through Nurture parents are regularly reminded of who we are together, keeping our individual and collective vision strong. As parents and schools refresh and challenge their understanding of Christian education, they realise that what they do in their school setting can impact the wider Christian school community.

How are you engaging with Nurture?

Some strategies schools have been using include:

  • Featuring the magazine, or an individual article, in your school’s newsletter.
  • Distributing copies to local churches, or encouraging school families to share with folk at their church.
  • Posting the magazine home to bypass the school backpack—this also serves to highlight its value.
  • Placing a sticker on the front identifying that the school is providing this resource.
  • Inviting some of the article authors to speak at parent events.
  • Having staff or parents review articles. This is helpful for processing content as well as modelling engagement.
  • And my favourite: having parents, staff, or association members contribute to Nurture.


Nina Edlin

Urgent call for a Middle School Teacher for Araluen Christian College

Araluen Christian College has an urgent need for a middle school teacher to commence on the 23 July 2019. If this might be you, or you can think of someone, please contact the Principal, Rosie Lindsey

Developing Leaders Conference 15-18 September

As Christians we are called to follow Christ; to embody the life we advocate. As we engage with others we also need to be conscious of the message of our culture; to read the times. At the Developing Leaders Conference, we will ponder how we are called to follow the Bible while engaging with contemporary culture. We will wrestle with notions of how we are to follow Christ as leaders in the Christian community. We will consider how we can grow in our understandings of Christian schooling as we learn from each other. Are you called to follow and what does being empowered to lead look like?

  • Think deeply about what drives leadership
  • Consider how to keep focussed on our Christian faith in the midst of the busyness of school life
  • Learn and share Christian schooling practice
  • Wrestle with ideas in focus groups

Location: The Old Woolstore Hotel Hobart
Cost: $1350 Single room, $930 Twin share

Click here to register






Teaching and Learning Conference 15-18 September

Formational learning, forming students’ hearts and heads towards God’s story, is at the heart of Christian education. What will our teaching practice look like if education is about formation and counter-formation? How will our classrooms be distinctively different in the teaching and learning that occurs? What does the craft of formational learning look like? This conference will explore these questions while unfolding the second resource in the Transformation by Design series; Transformation by Design: Crafting Formational Learning.

This conference includes:

  • a gathering of teaching and learning and curriculum leaders from around Australia
  • a celebration of, and challenge towards, formational learning
  • an invitation to lead formational learning in your students and colleagues
  • an opportunity to collaboratively explore professional puzzles of practice
  • an opportunity to present professional pearls of practice with colleagues
  • an exposure to a variety of thinking routines and collaborative professional protocols for learning.

We are excited about our program and line-up of presenters and we are looking forward unfolding the recently published CEN resource Transformation by Design: Crafting Formational Learning. We look forward to collaborating with you, learning with you, and being formed and counter-formed with you as Christian educators.

Location: The Old Woolstore Hotel Hobart
Cost: $1,350 Single room, $930 Twin share

Click here to register

Governance Conference 14-16 November

At the 2019 Tone from the Top CEN Godly Governance conference, we will be looking at how building cultures of openness, honesty, integrity, and ethical behaviour are vital to our success as boards and ultimately, to the success of the schools we lead. We can see evidence everywhere of how the tone from the top genuinely makes a difference in our schools! This conference will build board member confidence and equip you with strategies to set the tone from the top in your school community in a godly and competent way.

At The Tone from the Top we will:

  • hear from people with significant experience and expertise in governing well not for profit organisations
  • consider the directors’ role in creating and sustaining a culture of vulnerable trust, we will explore the role of good communications in building this
  • analyse how boards set the tone from the top through effectively working with principals, and,
    we will look together at some ethical minefields for Christian school boards where our tone might be tested!

Location: Rydges on Swanston, Melbourne
Cost: Single delegate $1,250 Twin share: $1000

Click here to register

UPDATE: Sequel to Transformation by Design

Many will be aware that a follow-up resource to Transformation by Design: The Big Picture has been in the planning for some time. We are pleased to announce that significant progress has been made. Please stay tuned for announcements.

Book title
The book will be called:
Transformation by Design: Crafting Formational Learning

Following is a sneak peek at the contents:

Chapter 1
Crafted Teaching and Formational Learning – What’s Our Purpose?

Chapter 2
Curious and Courageous Teachers – Who Are We As Teachers?

Chapter 3
Curious and Courageous Students – Who Are Our Students and Who Are They Becoming?

Chapter 4
Extending the Big Picture Template – Which Planning Tools?

Chapter 5
Assessment Towards Formational Learning – How are our Students Learning and Forming, and How do we Communicate This?

Chapter 6
Understanding the Teaching and Learning Landscape – What’s our Frame for Understanding?

Chapter 7
Formational Teaching and Learning Practices – How do we Design and Plan Formational Learning?

Chapter 8
The Learning Community, Culture, and Space – Where are our Students Learning?

Reminder to Schools with Facebook Pages – Facebook automatic “information update suggestions”

Foundation Christian College has shared a reminder for schools with Facebook pages. It is possible for someone to suggest edits to information on a Facebook page, and if not reviewed in a certain timeframe, Facebook can automatically update the information in question. For Foundation they have had someone attempt to update their contact email address to something inappropriate.

To avoid incorrect representation on Facebook schools need to regularly check their notifications to determine whether Facebook has received any suggested changes. Facebook will not make these updates without first notifying the page holder and giving time to respond.

Thanks to Foundation Christian College for sharing this helpful reminder with our community.

Text Books Oz

As you can imagine, CEN regularly receives requests from organisations and businesses to promote their services or resources. Occasionally, one will catch our eye, which is the case in this particular business.

TextbooksOz is a social enterprise that has been providing textbooks and stationery to schools for over 20 years, where half the profits made support Prison Network, a Christian Charity that supports women who are or have been in Victoria’s prisons. TextbooksOz is proudly Australian owned, offers competitive prices through low overheads, offers personalised quality customer service, AND gives schools and parents the opportunity to support a social enterprise seeking to change the lives of marginalised women and their families. TextbooksOz can be either a primary or alternate source of secondary text books and stationery. We have contracts with major text book suppliers, such as Oxford, Cambridge, John Wiley, Macmillan, Penguin etc. We deliver direct to homes (through Aust Post or other delivery services) or make arrangements with the schools for parents to collect books from their schools. We offer free delivery to parents who purchase a certain amount of books and stationery within a certain time frame.

Please contact Jane Frawley if you are interested in more information.