Moreton Bay Environmental Education Centre
Dianne Aylward is the Principal of the Moreton Bay Environmental Education Centre, a day-visit centre that offers exciting education programs for Preparatory to Year 12 students.
The Centre gives students the opportunity to undertake authentic education programs in science, history and geography in the rich, natural environment the Bay provides.
Since Dianne accepted the role of Principal at the Centre in 2014, she has approached her role with a dedication, passion, and continuous commitment to excellence.
The Centre has thrived under her leadership. In just three years, the Centre has increased its student body by 28 per cent to 16,568 students per year. In the same time, the number of instructional hours delivered to these students has risen by 31 per cent to 41,951 hours per year.
Since Dianne stepped into the role, the Centre has joined the STEM Horizons for High Achievers program, which has seen over 1500 students visit the Centre to engage in an authentic, real-world science experience.
An astounding 100 per cent of the students involved said that STEM Horizons provided opportunities that were not available in schools, and 100 per cent of teachers agreed that the program had resulted in increased student engagement with and motivation towards sciences.
“Although the centre has reached capacity, Di continues to creatively find ways to accommodate schools, teachers, students, and the community to enhance learning across the centre’s ten unique learning sites,” teacher Tim Roe said.
Dianne’s work has not only benefited science-minded students. She has also introduced her very own Young Writers program, which sees students work with a successful author to expand on their writing skills. Over 200 students have since become published authors.
Dianne has also introduced a Young Leaders program, where students from eight primary schools in the Wynnum Manly cluster embarked on a leadership development camp with media personality Jillian Whiting with the aim of improving their public speaking and presentation skills.
Under Dianne’s leadership, the Centre’s scope has now expanded beyond school students.
Dianne has shown an exceptional commitment to building the capacity of all teachers, support staff, and partners, and now offers professional development courses to the wider community.
Dianne’s expertise in delivering hands-on education experiences has been widely recognised by her professional community.
She has been invited to present at conferences for the National and State Councils of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, the World Environmental Education Congress, and the Australian Association for Environmental Education.
Underpinning all Dianne’s work as principal of the Centre is the genuine support and care she demonstrates towards all of her staff. She mentors them, celebrates their achievements, and is constantly searching for opportunities for them to develop their own skillset.
Congratulations Dianne on your nomination.
By Claudia Farhart.