PETAA Board & Governance

Directors are elected from the membership at the AGM in accordance with the Constitution (below)

The Primary English Teaching Association Australia (PETAA) is a not-for-profit national professional teaching association. The association was incorporated in 1982. PETAA is governed by a Board of Directors, who determine the organisation’s strategic direction and to whom the General Manager and operations team report.

Outside view of PETAA Offices - second floor to leftPETAA Board Directors 2021

Current PETAA Board Directors are:

Company Secretary: Kevin Peters

The Board comprises:

  • President
  • Two Vice Presidents
  • Two appointed Directors
  • Four elected Directors

The term of office for elected directors is normally three years. From time to time Board appointments are made to fill a vacancy.

Pauline Jones, Ph.D. (UNSW)

Pauline Jones is Associate Professor, Language in Education at the University of Wollongong. Pauline has over 20 years' experience as a tertiary teacher educator specialising in language and literacy research, curriculum and pedagogy. Prior to that, she was a primary school teacher and English language teaching specialist. Having completed her PhD on oral language in 2005, she continues to investigate the role of classroom dialogue in educational success. Her recent research has included the use of student generated multimodal texts in Science, and language and literacy transitions across schooling years. She is currently researching the relationship between creativity and success in the curriculum disciplines, as well as the language demands of sustainability education. 

Pauline has a long-standing commitment to supporting teachers to implement research-based English and literacy curricula. She has written extensively for teachers (in- and pre-service) in language and literacy, including collaborating with Alyson Simpson and Anne Thwaite on a book about dialogue in teaching and professional learning for the PETAA book, Talking the Talk.

Dr Bronwyn Parkin

Bronwyn Parkin, PhD (University of Adelaide), Master of Education (UniSA)
Vice President

Bronwyn Parkin has 30 years' experience in supporting language and literacy teachers beginning in Aboriginal Education, remote and metropolitan through the South Australia Accelerated Literacy program focused on disadvantaged schools; through the recent PETAA research grants investigating academic language pedagogy with educationally marginalised students; and as a consultant working in disadvantaged contexts. Dr Parkin has been a member of the Literacy Education Advisory Committee of South Australian Department of Education.

Timothy Warwick

Timothy Warwick BA Arts/Law (UQ), MA teach (University of Melbourne)
Vice President

Tim Warwick currently works with Department of Education & Training (Vic) as a Project Manager on the Shepparton Education Plan.  This is a plan for transformational change in the outcomes and opportunities for the young people of Greater Shepparton. He was recently Principal at Gowrie St Primary School in Shepparton. Earlier in his career, he taught Legal Studies and Humanities at Wanganui Park Secondary College. Tim has led and supported a number of Indigenous education and cultural awareness strategies which have been launched in schools across the Murray Goulburn Valley region. He was the Project Co-ordinator for the Kaiela Dhungala First Peoples Curriculum and is on the boards of Ganbina and Boundless, two organisations aimed at supporting the aspirations of our young people.

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Helen Adam, Senior Lecturer, Course Coordinator and researcher, Edith Cowan University

Helen’s research addresses the role and importance of quality inclusive literature in the social and emotional and educational wellbeing of the child, with a particular focus on the importance of authentic representations and inclusion of cultural diversity in children’s literature. Helen’s work has a particular focus on promoting socially just and equitable education through the promotion of the publication and use of authentically diverse and inclusive literature as one way to break down barriers of prejudice and misunderstanding in society. Her work is published in internationally renowned research journals.  Helen has served as a judge for the Children’s Book Council Book of the Year Awards and is frequently called on for expert comment in the media and as a presenter to diverse audiences of educators and academics.

Therese Gawthorne

Therese Gawthorne, M IL (UoM), M Ed (WSU)

Therese has over 30 years’ experience as an educator in NSW primary schools, teaching all grades K-6 across rural and metropolitan settings, predominantly in schools of socio-economic disadvantage. She has held a range of leadership roles in schools for the last 20 years, with responsibility for leading teacher professional learning, particularly in aspects of literacy.

Therese is currently working as a Curriculum Advisor with the NSW Department of Education, where she enjoys the opportunity to build the capacity of teachers across a range of schools, continuously striving for excellence in improving student outcomes.

Mardi Gorman

Mardi Gorman, Dip Teach (ACU), BEd (Ballarat Uni), MEd (Uni of Melb)

Mardi Gorman is an experienced educator who has worked within a range of educational contexts both in Australia and overseas in New York and London. Mardi manages her own education consultancy in Melbourne, focusing on building educator’s pedagogical knowledge and instructional practice on effective literacy practice. She is part of the team who has developed the University of Melbourne’s Network of Schools project, where she plans and presents professional learning seminars, leads focus groups and supports schools in connecting research to the practicalities of school action planning and professional learning.

Mardi strongly believes that quality teachers and leaders remain pivotal to driving a positive impact on student learning. This drives her passion for, and focus on, professional learning for educators.

Board member Julie Hayes

Julie Hayes, BEd (University of South Australia)

Julie has worked in schools as a teacher and leader, both here and in the UK, for nearly 35 years. She retired in 2019 having been Principal of Cowandilla Primary School in Adelaide for the past 16 years. Most of her career was spent in schools and preschools with high numbers of migrant and refugee children. Knowing the important role language plays in learning and social interaction in and out of school, Julie ensured her teachers were trained in and Accelerated Literacy and Systemic Functional Linguistics. Teachers need to be experts in order to help children construct highly effective oral, written and visual texts.

Julie has been an active member of state and national Principals’ associations and won the 2018 John Laing Award for her contribution to professional learning in South Australia.

Melanie McDonald





Melanie McDonald, Dip Teach EC (Monash University) B. Education (Queensland University of Technology)

Melanie has recently transitioned into the role of Capability Manager for the Queensland Department of Education’s Teacher Learning Centres. This role involves supporting Early Career teachers across the Metropolitan Region of Brisbane. She works with school leadership teams and regional staff to build consistency in mentoring practices, including delivering regional Mentor training. She also connects with HEI's and Pre-service teachers, and runs regular professional development and networking events. This follows a number of years as Director of the Professional Learning Hub in the Ipswich Corridor, supporting the professional development of Early Career teachers and Mentors. Prior to this, Melanie’s previous role was in a school as the pedagogy coach, where her focus was on the development of a consistent approach to the teaching of reading; she has over 20 years' experience in teaching and leadership roles in schools. Reading and early literacy development has always been a passion for Melanie and she believes that her connections to schools and classrooms gives her a good understanding of teacher development needs; she is committed to building capacity in others.

Janelle Warhurst, M.ED (Teacher Librarianship) (Charles Sturt University)

Janelle Warhurst has been a primary teacher since she graduated from  Sydney Teachers College in 1978. She went on to do a Graduate Diploma in Education (language) and also a Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship) at Charles Sturt University. Her love of teaching children English and many areas of the curriculum with a strong emphasis on quality literature has continued throughout many years in schools. She is looking forward to working with the PETAA team on professional learning and publications. She is grateful to her colleagues and members who have given her the opportunity to work with PETAA. Janelle is currently Deputy Principal at Woollahra Public School in Sydney's East after relieving and acting as principal in several schools over the past five years. She is studying the Women's Advanced Leadership Program through NESLI. Janelle is married and has three adult children. She enjoys travelling, reading and the arts.

Kevin Peters, University of Technology Sydney
Company Secretary

Kevin Peters has extensive experience in secretariat and corporate governance in a career spanning more than 20 years across the higher education, not-for-profit and corporate sectors. Kevin joined University of Technology Sydney in 2011 and is currently Governance and Records Officer in the Faculty of Health and, working with the faculty leadership group, provides high level secretariat support ensuring the effective operation of faculty’s boards and committees. Previously Kevin worked at MBF, and as a member of the Project Team, supported the Due Diligence Committee in the lead up to approval of the Demutualisation Information Memorandum by the MBF board. Following approval by MBF members of the proposed Scheme to demutualise and merge with Bupa, he was appointed Secretary of the member entitlement Review Committee.


The Primary English Teaching Association Australia Limited (ACN 002 557 075) is a not-for-profit company with income and assets applied solely to the objects of the company. It is a company limited by guarantee with no share capital.

Founded in 1972, the Association was incorporated in 1982 as the Primary English Teaching Association. Members voted to change its company name to the Primary English Teaching Association Australia Limited in May 2012.The constitution was most recently amended in May 2015.

The company’s operations are governed by its Constitution. The Constitution outlines the aims of the Primary English Teaching Association Australia Limited and the rules governing how the company functions and specifies:

  • objects of the company
  • membership and members' rights
  • the calling and business of Meetings
  • the election, role and responsibilities of the Board of Directors
  • administration and general business

Annual reports

PETAA Annual Report 2020 (.pdf 1.8 MB)

PETAA Annual Report 2019 (.pdf 8.4 MB)

PETAA Annual Report 2018 (.pdf 9.5 MB)

PETAA Annual Report 2017(.pdf 9 MB)

PETAA Annual Report 2016 (.pdf 3.1 MB)

PETAA Annual Report 2015 (.pdf 718 kB)

PETAA Annual Report 2014 (.pdf 414 kB)