Outstanding Primary Principal Award Finalists

Outstanding Primary Principal Award Finalists for the Victorian Education Excellence Awards program.

Julie Gilbert, Croydon Primary School

As principal of the multicultural community of Croydon Primary School, Julie Gilbert has consistently worked to create structures, attitudes and expectations that enable students and their families to feel culturally safe and valued.

Building a positive school culture over many years, Julie has fostered a resilient and respectful learning and wellbeing framework for students, ensuring that they have the support and facilities they need to flourish at school.

Generating such a framework has meant extending support to the diverse community of parents and stakeholders. Recruitment of Burmese staff has strengthened ties with refugee families and the inclusion of Koorie Elders in children’s learning, as well as dedicated support for students with a disability and their families, has created an exceptional degree of trust in the community.

Julie’s focus on supporting all students and their families has been complemented by her oversight of the extensive modernisation of the school’s infrastructure, ensuring a secure and fit-for purpose future for her school community.

Clare Monk, Warrnambool West Primary School

Clare Monk’s leadership of Warrnambool West Primary School has transformed a school into a vibrant and successful environment for children’s learning.

As the principal of the school since 2018, Clare has guided exemplary school improvement, evidenced by sustained improvements in student and staff data reflecting great improvement in staff’s attitudes and in students’ learning outcomes.

With a unique and local understanding of the barriers facing many of the children, Clare has shouldered the privilege and responsibilities of her principal role by investing first in the school’s teachers and middle-level leadership.

Clare is building the capacity of the next generation of teachers, educational leaders, and principals through mentoring and providing targeted professional learning for her staff. Creating a culture of trust and shared responsibility in her community, her leadership is positively transforming children’s outcomes and their experience of primary education in Victoria.

Kristy Mullins, Wangaratta West Primary School

As principal of Wangaratta West Primary School, a school of 500 students, Kristy Mullins has created an exceptional learning environment where students feel safe and cared for and where families are valued as an integral part of their child’s education.

A strong moral vision has guided Kristy in her leadership of her school community — to provide students with the best possible opportunities to learn and thrive. The school’s vision is demonstrated in all aspects of school life, from strategic planning documents and conversations with staff, parents, and students, to the consistent and visible learning in every classroom.

Led by Kristy’s educational and moral integrity, experience and inclusiveness, Wangaratta West Primary students are exceeding the state average in both learning and wellbeing outcomes.

Kristy’s leadership as principal and system leader has created strong and sustaining relationships.