If we want children to flourish, we must ask ourselves if the school system is doing the right thing by them. The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the fault lines that emerge when health and learning aren’t considered holistically. Declining mental health, disengagement from learning, disruption among social connections and vastly reduced physical activity were some of the impacts on children. Can we learn the lessons of the pandemic, armed with the evidence that outcomes for many Australian children were declining well before COVID-19? Can we shake up the limiting notion that the primary task of schools is academic achievement?
This webinar argues that now is the time to reimagine schools, to become places that focus on the whole child’s health, wellbeing and learning. How can we make schools places that amplify children’s physical and mental wellbeing, give children the opportunity to thrive and make them lifelong learners?
Professor Pasi Sahlberg and Professor Sharon Goldfeld will be launching their paper 'Foundations for a Flourishing Future: Uplifting wellbeing and learning in Australian schools' at this webinar. Join us in conversation and become part of a movement for change.
Professor Sharon Goldfeld is a paediatrician, researcher and policy advisor focussing on child development and health equity. She is Director of the Centre for Community Child Health at the Royal Children’s Hospital’s, and Theme Director for Population Health at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute. With a decade of experience in state government as a senior policymaker in health and education, including holding the role of Principal Medical Advisor in the Victorian Department of Education and Training, Sharon is uniquely positioned to seamlessly straddle research, policy and practice. Her expertise is highly sought after with appointments to government Expert Advisory Groups in health, education and social services departments including her recent appoint to the National Early Years Strategy Advisory Group.
Professor Pasi Sahlberg is a Finnish teacher, academic, and global thought-leader. He has worked as a schoolteacher, teacher-educator, academic, and policymaker in Finland, and he has advised schools and education system leaders around the world. He is a recipient of several awards for his lifelong service in education, including the 2012 Education Award (Finland), the 2014 Robert Owen Award (Scotland), the 2016 Lego Prize (Denmark), and 2021 Dr Paul Brock Memorial Medal in Australia. His most recent books are "Let the Children Play: How more play will save our schools and help children thrive" (2019, with William Doyle) and "In Teachers We Trust: The Finnish way to world-class schools" (2021, with Tim Walker). His forthcoming book (with Bill Doyle) is The Post-Digital Child: The Coming Golden Age of Low-Tech Childhood. Pasi is Professor of Educational Leadership at the University of Melbourne in Australia, and he lives in Melbourne with his wife and two sons.
Anne Hollonds is Australia’s National Children’s Commissioner. Formerly Director of the Australian Institute of Family Studies, for 23 years Anne was Chief Executive of government and non-government organisations focussed on research, policy and practice in child and family wellbeing. As a psychologist, Anne worked extensively in frontline practice, including child protection, domestic and family violence, mental health, child and family counselling, parenting education, and family law counselling. Anne currently contributes to several expert advisory groups, including the Family Law Council, Australian Child Maltreatment Study, NSW Domestic and Family Violence and Sexual Assault Council, National Plan Advisory Group (NPAG), and Early Years Strategy Advisory Panel.
The webinar live stream will have Auslan interpretation and live captioning.
This event is presented by the Australian Human Rights Commission.
Technical production of this event is proudly managed by The Social Deck