2024 SASPA Conference speakers to come..

2023 Speakers!
in order of presenting

Jack Kanya Kudnuitya Buckskin

Jack Buckskin is the Founder and Managing Director of Kuma Kaaru Cultural Services

A proud Kaurna Narungga and Wirangu Man that has spent many years teaching his language locally, nationally and internationally.

Jayne Heath

Chief Executive, SASPA

Jayne brings to the role of SASPA Chief Executive some 43 years of experience in South Australian public schools, of which 25 were in senior leadership roles.

Jayne has been a member of the SASPA Board for more than 10 years and, for much of this time, has been the Convenor of SASPA’s Professional Learning Strategic and Conference Planning Groups.
She has a Masters of Education (Professional Learning) and has exhibited a dedication and passion for high quality public education throughout her professional life. Jayne is an advocate for policy initiatives that better address issues of equity in education.

Dr Jan Hare

Professor, The University of British Columbia

Dr. Jan Hare is an Anishinaabe scholar and educator from the M’Chigeeng First Nation in northern Ontario. Dr. Hare is a Professor in the Department of Language and Literacy Education, currently serving as Dean pro tem, and former Associate Dean for Indigenous Education in the Faculty of Education at the University of British Columbia. Dr. Hare has also held the position of the Director of NITEP – The Faculty’s Indigenous Teacher Education Program. More recently, she has been awarded a Canada Research Chair (Tier 1) in Indigenous Pedagogy, which focuses on the complex processes of teaching from Indigenous knowledge frameworks by focusing on instructor knowledge, beliefs, and practices from across different disciplines in higher education. She led the development of the Massive Open Online Course, Reconciliation Through Indigenous Education.

Dr Kelly-Ann Allen

Associate Professor, Monash University

Dr Kelly-Ann Allen is an Associate Professor and educational and developmental psychologist at Monash University, fellow of the College of Educational and Developmental Psychologists and an honorary principal fellow of the University of Melbourne. With more than ten years’ experience as a school psychologist, she currently combines her expertise as a practitioner with her academic research interests of school belonging.

Dr Allen’s core work is in direct response to the widely reported global decline in belonging, particularly for students. Her research traces the further deterioration of belonging following COVID-19, and its strong associations with mental illness (both in adolescence and adulthood), wellbeing and academic outcomes, demonstrating that student belonging is an important problem to address. With the study of belonging core to Dr. Allen’s research priorities, her projects have built a conceptual and empirical understanding of what it means to belong.

Dr Allen’s interest in belonging has led her to author and edit over 200 scholarly publications including the award winning, Psychology of Belonging (Routledge) and Boosting School Belonging in Adolescents: Interventions for teachers and mental health professionals (Routledge). An open access policy on school belonging (free to download) is available in her latest book, Building Better Schools with Evidence-based Policy: Adaptable Policy for Teachers and School Leaders.

Dr Allen’s mission is to signal and accentuate the importance of belonging in day-to-day life, and to better understand the mechanics of how it can be enhanced across the lifespan, but particularly in educational contexts. Her work is based on the need to belong as a powerful driver of motivation and a fundamental pillar of good physical and mental health. In a world of rising rates of loneliness and social isolation, a comprehensive understanding of belonging has never been more important.

The Honourable Blair Boyer - Dinner Speaker

Minister for Education, Training & Skills

Blair lives in the North Eastern suburbs of Adelaide with his family.  When he has time he enjoys playing basketball, watching the footy, listening to music, taking the kids bike riding and spending time on the family farm.  He is also a volunteer with the Salisbury SES Unit and the Modbury Meals on Wheels.
Blair grew up on the family farm in rural South West Victoria, not far from Mount Gambier. He was educated at Portland Secondary College (VCE) before graduating from Monash University with degrees in Arts and Law in 2005. It was at University in 2000 that Blair met his wife, Catherine, with whom he has three daughters. Blair completed his articled clerkship in 2006 and practiced as a solicitor for a short period of time.
In 2011 Blair and Catherine moved to Adelaide where Blair worked as Chief of Staff to Minister Jennifer Rankine.  After Jennifer’s retirement from Cabinet, Blair began work for Premier Jay Weatherill.  In March 2018 he was elected Member of Parliament for the seat of Wright.  In May 2018, Blair was appointed to the role of Shadow Assistant Minister for Health and education.  IN September 2020, Blair was appointed to the role of Shadow Minister for Education, Skills and Training and Veterans’ Affairs.
Blair was re-elected as the Member for Wright in March 2022 and was appointed Minister for Education, Training and Skills in the Malinauskas State Government.
Blair’s upbringing in a rural environment has instilled in him a love of the country and an appreciation of the rewards that come from hard work and persistence. He is aware of the privilege that life has granted him and is determined to do his utmost to extend to all South Australians the opportunity to make the most of their talents and aspirations.
Blair is particularly passionate about education and believes that a strong, affordable and accessible public education system is the key to equality.  He believes that meaningful, dignified, work is the bedrock of our society and should be available to all South Australians, regardless of their means or background.

Ashum Yarlupina Owen - Ngangki Warra

Ngangki Warra is a Kaurna female led cultural group that aims to elevate and amplify the voices of women through language, culture and dance.

Professor Martin Westwell

Chief Executive, The Department for Education

Martin was appointed Chief Executive of the Department for Education in April 2022, following a successful 4 years as Chief Executive of the SACE Board.

Martin has worked extensively with education systems and other organisations in using evidence to inform policy, practice, innovation and impact in education.
He was a Chief Investigator in the national Australian Research Council (ARC) Science of Learning Research Centre, and has worked with UNESCO using evidence to inform strategic planning of education in the Asia-Pacific region.

In 2018, Martin received the prestigious Australian Council for Educational Leaders’ (ACEL) Gold Medal, awarded for the most outstanding contribution to the study and practice of educational administration and leadership.
In 2007 Martin and his family moved to South Australia where he took the position of inaugural Director of the Flinders Centre for Science Education in the 21st Century and then Strategic Professor in the Science of Learning at Flinders University.

Martin completed his degree and PhD at Cambridge University and was a Research Fellow at Lincoln College, Oxford University in biological chemistry.

Dr Lisa Bailey - Breakout Session Presenter

MOD, University of South Australia

Dr Lisa Bailey has extensive experience working as a science communicator in cultural institutions both in South Australia and the UK, creating and curating varied science engagement programs of online content, events, film festivals and exhibitions.

Lisa graduated with a PhD in Biochemistry, before switching to a career in science communication.  She has worked at the Royal Institution of Great Britain, The Royal Institution of Australia as Program Manager, and is now the Exhibition and Experience Design Manager at MOD. at The University of South Australia.  She also has lectured in Science Communication at Flinders University.  Lisa was  President of the Australian Science Communicators, the national forum for science communicators and science journalists in Australia from 2018-2021.

Dr Vitomir Kovanovic - Breakout Session Presenter

C3L, University of South Australia

Dr. Vitomir Kovanovic is a Senior Lecturer in Learning Analytics at the Centre for Change and Complexity in Learning (C3L) at the University of South Australia, working in Learning Analytics and Artificial Intelligence in Education. His research focuses on developing novel learning analytics systems using learners’ trace data records collected by learning management systems to understand and improve student learning. Dr. Kovanovic obtained his PhD in Informatics at the University of Edinburgh, the United Kingdom, in 2017. Being highly active in the Learning Analytics research community, he is currently the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Learning Analytics (JLA) and an Associate Editor at the Higher Education Research & Development (HERD) Journal.

Professor Scott Eacott

Professor, The University of New South Wales

Scott Eacott PhD, is Deputy Director of the Gonski Institute for Education and Professor of Education in the School of Education at UNSW Sydney and Adjunct Professor in the Department of Educational Administration at the University of Saskatchewan. He leads an interdisciplinary research program that seeks to develop tools for educators, schools and systems to better understand the provision of schooling. Current projects are focused on principles of school system design, building data infrastructure linking education and social data, and housing affordability for educators (and other essential workers). His distinctive approach that has led to invitations to run workshops and give talks in Norway, Canada, the USA, Indonesia, South Africa, Mexico, and throughout Australia. Scott has authored >100 publications, led major research projects (funding ̴ $4.25M) and successfully translated his research into policy and practice. Further details of his work can be found at his university profile and you can connect with him on Twitter @ScottEacott


SASPA Gold Business Partners

SASPA Youth Leadership Partner

SASPA Silver Business Partners