The award in 2014 is given to Bernie Roebuck, a person who represents everything a public school educator should be: a fierce advocate, a passionate teacher, an exceptional Principal and a leader committed to advancing public education. Bernie has worked across regions as a leader in professional associations, influencing the direction of education in this state for three decades. He has been a member of the NSW Secondary Principals’ Council since 1998 and a principal in three leadership contexts.
Our honoured colleague was an elected member of the NSW Secondary Principals’ Council executive as an executive and deputy president. He is renowned for his contribution to rural and remote education with a 17 year career as principal and Secondary Principals’ Council leader. He has contributed to the development of the first operable rural and remote education blueprint. The recipient has also led issues around high performance and contributed to the directions of the futures alliance (not always smooth sailing, but always genuine, honest and forthright) including the provision of secondary education.
In his roles as a Secondary Principals’ Council Reference Group Leader and State Assembly representative for an extended period of time he has been a loyal, strong, loud, fearless and a determined advocate for secondary students, principals and schools. He has given high level policy advice on behalf of the NSW Secondary Principals’ Council to the employer and government, whether invited to do so or otherwise.
Colleagues within the NSW Secondary Principals’ Council have also recognised and applauded his courage, fearless and independent thought illuminated by a strong desire to advocate clearly on behalf of colleagues and schools. His contributions are often emphasised with head in hand and rubbing at the top of his skull in frustration. He has modelled professional leadership at the highest state level and has made a difference that honours his extreme passion for secondary government education as is a hallmark of the recipients of the Bill Kennedy award.
For these reasons, and for many more, we are proud to present the resilient Bernie Roebuck with the 2014 Bill Kennedy Medal.