Doug Thomas | Principal & Winner - 2023 Primary School Principal of the Year Award
Claremont College

Doug Thomas, Principal & Winner - 2023 Primary School Principal of the Year Award, Claremont College

Doug is Principal of Claremont College, an Anglican co-educational primary school in Randwick, Sydney where he has been the Principal for 17 years. In 2023 he was winner of the Australian Primary School Principal of the Year (Non Govt School) and listed in the 'Education Hot List Top 50 - representing the cutting edge of educational excellence in Australia. In March 2024, Doug's school was one of four Australian organisations (and one of two schools) to be the recipient of an (IFIP) Global Inclusion Award 2024. The aim of the awards is to “shine a light on the diverse inclusion challenges that the world faces and to showcase existing best practices that can guide others towards ensuring equitable access and benefits in education, employment, culture, and leisure activities worldwide”. Doug’s passions and interests include; creating a safe and inclusive, vibrant and positive school culture, supporting and promoting teacher professional learning and wellbeing, building highly effective teams, growing leaders, contemporary school design and master-planning, strategy for school improvement and future proofing, and also global education, particularly in the third world. Doug travels every year to Northern India where his family has set up with currently fourteen small school centres in slum and remote jungle areas. One of the main priorities of the charity is to promote equity and inclusion providing access to education for students who do not attend school. The school centres target children living in poverty in slums, remote and isolated places and advocating for those with disabilities. When in India Doug mentors school leaders and works alongside teachers to support them with their teaching and other aspects of their work. He has also trained the local police, social workers, politicians and NGOs in anti-human trafficking programs, participating in other community initiatives and humanitarian endeavours. Doug tries to blog regularly at


Day 1 @ 11:45

More than ‘just’ a teacher

You are never ‘just’ a teacher. It is time to reclaim the significance of the role and impact that teachers have in all contexts and settings. It’s particularly crucial to put the spotlight back on the importance of primary school teachers – especially in the lives of children, families, and communities. The transformative power of education, guided by skilled and dedicated teachers, and educational leaders not only shapes minds but also has the potential to profoundly impact and uplift entire communities. Participants will;- be inspired and uplifted to understand the importance of a teacher - be presented with an overview of research that shows the impact of primary school settings- be encouraged to persevere and continue with a career in teaching if tempted to leave the profession- consider a long-term career in educational leadership- recognise and celebrate the pivotal role of teachers in bringing hope and transforming lives and building a brighter future for all.

last published: 17/Jun/24 03:45 GMT

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