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Professional learning for community languages teachers

Low-cost programs for Community Languages Schools
In partnership with the NSW Department of Education, the Sydney Institute for Community Languages Education offers three courses to support development of teachers working in community-languages schools.


Our programs are subsidised by the Department of Education and are provided at low cost to teachers working in government-funded NSW Community Languages Schools.

Completing the Community Language Teaching (Foundation) Program will contribute 60 hours of Professional Development, addressing desciptors 1.3.2, 2.1.2, 2.2.2, 3.2.2, 3.3.2, 4.2.2, 5.1.2 and 5.2.2 from the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers.

This program is not a higher-education award and not a qualification recognised under the Australian Qualifications Framework. It is designed to develop and support the careers of people working in community language schools: teachers, administrators and board members.

The Community Languages Teaching – Foundation program is a 60-contact-hour professional-learning program for teachers working in NSW Government-funded Community Languages Schools.

The program will help you to:

  • understand how children learn and develop languages and how to teach them
  • engage and interest students in maintaining and extending their language and cultural abilities
  • plan lessons and assess student learning
  • develop resources and teaching activities that work with a range of students

in 2021, all lessons will be conducted via Zoom, although there is provision for two of the scheduled lessons in each program to be held as face-to-face sessions (subject to prevailing Covid-19 health orders). Most lessons will be three hours long (5–8pm)  on Thursday nights for 17 weeks from March 25 to August 19. An intensive program that can be completed in 9 weeks is also available on Sundays, commencing May 2 and concluding July 18. The hours of the Sunday program are 9am–4pm. Unless you attend less than 80 per cent of classes, you will automatically fail the course. For Thursday programs this means you cannot miss more than three sessions. For the Sunday program this means you cannot miss more than one day.  

If you apply for admission and are successful in gaining a place, you will be required to pay an administration fee of $70 before your enrolment can be processed.

As part of the Foundation program, subject to Covid-19 restrictions, you will visit mainstream schools to observe teaching. The classroom learning is interactive and practical, giving you confidence and new ideas in working with young children, teenagers and adults.

The program assessment is practical and involves developing resources, behaviour management strategies and classroom activities.

Applications for the 2021 intake of this program have closed.

The advanced program is a 60-hour face-to-face program for community languages schools teachers in NSW who have completed the Community Languages Teaching Program – Foundation (see above) or equivalent.

The program will help you to:

  • plan units of work
  • develop advanced teaching skills
  • use technology in the classroom 
  • mentor other teachers.

For the assessment, you will research a topic of interest such as developing a school program or designing materials and resources that you will then present to other teachers in the program.

The Community Languages School Leadership and Management Program is a 60 contact-hour program for school principals, leaders and management committees.

You will learn up-to-date ways to teach students and design school programs, as well as develop skills in leading and supporting teachers. There is a focus on learning how to manage schools, organise finances and meet government requirements. 

For the assessment task, you will need to evaluate aspects of your school and develop a plan of action. To assist in this, experienced principals of community languages schools will mentor groups of participants.

Course contacts

Program Director

Associate Professor Ken Cruickshank