Supporting the independent education community


We’re back! COVID-19 threw up many challenges for all of us during 2020, in particular the stress for many in coping with sudden work and life changes. It was with sadness that our annual early childhood conference could not go ahead last year for obvious reasons. However, with 2021 rolling on, the IEU hopes you are healthy, well and ready to get some normality back into your lives.

Welcome to the IEUA NSW/ACT Branch 2021 Early Childhood Conference, We are all in this Together: Support, Resilience, Recognition.



Member: $110 plus fee

Member + dinner: $145 plus fee

Non-member: $200 plus fee

Conference registration 8.15am and concludes 4.15pm


Keynote Speakers:

Jay Weatherill

The Hon Jay Weatherill AO is the CEO of Thrive by Five responsible for delivering The Minderoo Foundation’s early childhood agenda. We will hear how Thrive by Five are campaigning for a universally accessible and high-quality early learning system for Australia and how you can be part of the journey. Mr Weatherill was Premier of South Australia for six and half years and Minister for 16 years in portfolios including early childhood.

Jodie Harrison MP, Member for Charlestown, Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Learning - TBC

The Member of Charlestown is a friend to our sector and has been fighting tirelessly for better outcomes for our teachers and educators in early childhood. Ms Harrison knows the value of quality care and education and the long-term benefits to young children.

Dr Michael Wright

Recently a decision on the IEU’s Equal Remuneration and Work Value case was handed down by the Fair Work Commission. IEU Senior Industrial Officer Dr Michael Wright will provide an update on what this decision means to early childhood teachers.


Workshops 1 (1 choice available)

A) Power and Purpose - how resilient teachers and resilient children can support each other.

Teachers, like children, need to find meaning and purpose in our work - to be recognised. How do we support each other in this struggle?

Stephen Gallen is an early childhood consultant and teacher, whose work focusses on curriculum, pedagogy and children’s and teachers’ rights.

B) Wayapa Wuurrk - Connect to the Earth

Wayapa Wuurrk a Cultural framework weaving Indigenous meditation, art, music and movement.

Elizabeth (Murrah) Keys is a strong Worimi Saltwater woman who believes education through creativity promotes imagination, innovation and emotional development, the key to a balanced mind.

B.Ed PDHPE, CEO-Ninang Industries

Chair -Gudjagang Ngara Li-Dhi Aboriginal Corporation

C) Our Deadly Journey

Borilla Kindergarten’s Deadly Journey to truly engage in meaningful partnerships to improve the wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and families.

Jenny Finlay is the Director of Borilla Community Kindergarten, Emerald, Nth QLD IEU/ ERO Witness has been working in early childhood since 1980 and is a strong advocate for social justice. She is willing to challenge the system and try new approaches to move forward within the early childhood sector.

Kelsie Parter is a proud Darumbal women with Torres Strait Islander and South Sea Islander heritage with passion for working with young children of all cultures and sharing her heritage and culture with all children, family and staff at the kindy.


Workshops 2 (1 choice available)

A) Wayapa Wuurk- Indigenous meditation and movement; drumming workshop

Elizabeth Keys and Phillip Bragg

B) Yoga & Mindfulness – How Yoga and Mindfulness can help children and teachers with their mental health.

Maria Gonzalez Sancho is a physical education and languages, and she has created a Yoga program specially for children.

C) Healing Circle's Weaving with Lamandra Grass, to Create Healing Circle's. Learn history of Weaving

Karleen Green: Karleen's connections are from the Mingunbul & Munungli Language groups of the Bundjalung Nation of Tweed Valley. Traditional Weaving & Dying Techniques, are her passion for keeping culture alive.


NESA has implemented major changes to its professional development policy and we are still in an interim period. As a result we are unable to guarantee that the workshop hours will be recognised as accredited hours. We understand that NESA will require accredited PD sessions to be a minimum of 90 minutes duration, therefore we have structured the workshop schedule to enable us to potentially register the sessions once the process is made clear. At this point all delegates are advised they will be able to include any workshop hours they attend as elective PD for their maintenance of accreditation PD hours.




07 Aug 2021


8:15 am - 4:15 pm