Supporting the independent education community

Responding to bushfire trauma


The Union is offering an opportunity to engage with experts in responding to the effects bushfires have on students/children and staff.

Significant numbers of students, children and staff are suffering trauma related to the bushfires. This may include emotional, physical, economic and displacement related trauma. Recent studies into those affected by Victoria’s Black Saturday catastrophic fires have shown that children demonstrate outcomes one to five years below their age group norm. Studies of staff affected by bushfires have shown that they are more anxious and have poorer overall wellbeing than staff in comparable settings.

This course is designed by the Union to respond to an urgent need of its members to address their own wellbeing but also to assist their students/children with recovering after a bushfire.

The course will be conducted by Professor Lisa Gibbs and Jane Nursey of the University of Melbourne, authors of the study ‘Delayed disaster impacts on academic performance of primary school children’,Child Development (2019).

The course will cover early childhood, primary and secondary issues as well as support staff and teacher wellbeing and recovery.

For moere details see PD, training and meetings at or email


Completing Responding to Bushfire Trauma will contribute 2 hours of NESA Registered PD addressing 1.1.2; 1.5.2 and 4.4.2 from the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers towards maintaining accreditation at Proficient Teacher Accreditation in NSW.