Catholic Education South Australia
21 Nov 2023
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SA Catholic school educator promoting teaching to Australia

An educator from a South Australian Catholic school is helping to promote teaching on a national scale, in a campaign aimed at raising the status of the profession.

Tania Willsdon, a Reception teacher at Our Lady of Hope School, Greenwith is featuring across the country as part of the ‘Be That Teacher’ campaign, a joint initiative of the Albanese Government and State and Territory Governments.

While we don’t remember much from when we were little, most of us can remember ‘that’ teacher who helped us to aim higher, be braver and work harder.

The campaign is designed to encourage more Australians to want to be that teacher.

Tania is one of 15 teachers from across Catholic Education nationally who were selected to be part of the campaign which profiles selected teachers sharing why they choose to teach and their inspirational stories about the lasting impact they have had on their students.

Tania’s story and many others can be found in the teacher gallery on the Be That Teacher website.

Tania is said to be ‘that’ teacher for many of her students.

“Being a Reception teacher is not just about educating students – it’s about building connections with families,” said Tania.

“Parents put a lot of trust in their child’s first teacher and for many, it is the first time they have handed over responsibility of their child to another adult for this length of time.

“Over the years I was extremely fortunate to teach 3 children from the same family when they were in Reception, and I built a strong trusting relationship with their parents. At the end of each year that I taught each child, their mother created memory boxes from the whole class. The children completed the sentence 'We love Miss Delia/Willsdon because' and this went alongside a photograph of each child.

“I’ll always treasure these mementos.”

Commonwealth Minister for Education Jason Clare said that the campaign is in response to recent surveys which show that most teachers don't think that what they do is valued by the community – which needs to change.

“This campaign is all about changing the way we as a country think about our teachers, and the way our teachers think our country thinks of them,” said Mr Clare.

“I want more young Australians to want to be a teacher. To be that teacher, who inspires and changes young lives.

“While this campaign highlights eight incredible teachers, the truth is there are more than 300,000 teachers with stories just like theirs.

“I encourage anyone looking for a rewarding career that will shape the next generation of Australians to consider becoming that teacher.”

South Australian Minister for Education, Training and Skills Blair Boyer said that teacher shortages are a national issue and while we have many amazing teachers across the country and in South Australia, we still need more.

“We need to ensure we not only attract more people to vital teaching roles but also retain the services of the exemplary teachers who already work in our schools,” said Mr Boyer.

“This national campaign will inspire more people to join the profession of teaching and help amplify the stories of the brilliant teachers in our schools.”

As part of the campaign, teachers are also being encouraged to share their own stories and Australians are being encouraged to share their stories about the teacher that changed their lives.

Every teacher has a story to share, and everyone has a story to share about a special teacher.

To share yours, or find out more about becoming a teacher, visit

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