‘New voice’ in Education highlights importance of support for new teachers

Dr Sean Kearney, Associate Dean at The University of Notre Dame Australia’s
School of Education, Sydney.

28 May 2015

An Education academic from The University of Notre Dame, Australia, Dr Sean Kearney, has received national recognition as one of the ‘new voices’ in contemporary Australian education for his work on the induction of new teachers and assessment reform in higher education.

He was awarded the ‘New Voice’ In Educational Leadership Research Scholarship NSW 2015 from the Australian Council for Educational Leadership (ACEL) last week.

Dr Kearney, an Associate Dean at the University’s School of Education, Sydney, said his research showed that improved induction measures for beginning teachers were a crucial step towards ensuring the future of the teaching profession in Australia.

“We lose too many teachers in the first few years of their career and my research has focused on the need to support, nuture and retain them,” Dr Kearney said.

The ACEL award recognises an impressive ‘new voice’ in educational leadership research from each state and territory of Australia. These ‘new voices’ are recognised as forward-thinking, relevant and responsive to issues in contemporary Australian education.

Dr Kearney said the award provided validation of the research he had been doing over the past three years and its recognition was incredibly satisfying.

The School of Education’s Sydney Dean, Professor Marguerite Maher, said staff were dynamic and dedicated to providing the very best teacher education programs informed by cutting edge research.

“Sean exemplifies the innovative spirit that prevails, having published widely in the field of educational leadership, including a book which encapsulated the findings of his PhD research,” Professor Maher said.

Dr Kearney’s has published peer reviewed journal articles in both of these areas and has presented at national and international conferences.

The scholarship adds to Dr Kearney’s growing list of notable achievements – he has been involved in international service learning programs for four years, received three grants for those programs, in addition to a Vice Chancellor’s Award and an Office of Learning and Teaching Citation (Team) for his work. Most recently he has started the Dayamani Foundation, which is building the Dayamani Academy in India to help educate underprivileged Dalit children in Tenali, Andhra Pradesh.

His current research focus is on assessment reform in higher education and the impact of international service learning immersion programs on students’ cross-cultural competence.

Theresa Kyne: Tel (02) 8204 4141; Mob: 0407 408 177; theresa.kyne@nd.edu.au