1. President's report

It is hard to comprehend that we are at the end of 2023 already. It may be a cliché, but it does certainly feel like it has flown by. In having to write the final end of year report, I was struck by how impactful everything has been this year. The conference stirred up some amazing ideas about our identities as adult educators, made us rethink how our brains work and helped us address numeracy as an important element in our education, irrespective of what your teaching area is. The Professional Learning sessions that, among other things, highlighted the importance of wellbeing for students and teachers alike, looked at some very interesting spaces to teach adults literacy and numeracy and emphasised the importance of how to ‘blend’ learning effectively.

And let us not forget Fine Print and the amazing work that the many contributors have done. There are some terrific reads in there and I cannot wait to get my hot little hand on the 3rd edition due out this month.

But none of this would be possible without such an amazingly dedicated team of volunteers. I was filled with such an amazing sense of pride during the last conference planning session, and I cannot wait to see it all come together in May, 2024. So, I would like to thank the VALBEC team for their dedication and support of me as President. I would also like to thank the Fine Print team, especially Deryn Mansell for her tireless work on what is an especially important part of the committee. Lastly, I would like to thank our ACFE for their financial support and our affiliates, ALA and ACAL who do amazing work in the adult education space. Until next year my educator friends, have a safe and restful break and we will see you in 2024.

VALBEC President

2. Valbec Membership

VALBEC Membership

You can join or renew online.


If you join in August, September or October, deduct 50%. Renewal falls due the following February.

Members receive:

  • Fine Print three times a year – a high quality journal for discussion and debate about good practice, theory and policy issues. Feedback and contributions are actively sought from members about content and issues.
  • eVALBEC – our e-mail communication keeping members informed of professional development activities, general committee activities and more up to date policy changes.

  • Discounts for the Annual Conference and other VALBEC statewide professional development.

  • Issues-based forums.

  • Focus on significant policy issues impacting on the field.

  • Free numeracy resources.

    3. Conference

    Submission for our 2024 conference: Supportive practices in a transformative landscape, are now open! In 2024, we have three theme areas: Responsive Practices, Community Engagement and Empowering Learners. If you have an interesting program, perspective or practice to share, please consider submitting a proposal through the following link: https://valbec.org.au/SubmitProposalPresent

    Submissions will close on the 23rd of February.

    5. Digital Literacy

    Unlocking the Potential: Navigating the Landscape of Artificial Intelligence in Education

    In the era of advancing Artificial Intelligence (AI), it becomes imperative for educators to comprehend its profound implications on education. AI's transformative capabilities extend to automating tasks, analyzing vast datasets, and generating customized results tailored to individual needs. From grading assignments, providing feedback, to addressing creative and cognitive development, AI operates with great speed and accuracy, improving operational efficiency. This is a unique opportunity for educators to harness the power of AI, thereby enhancing student learning experiences and fostering increased engagement. However, it is essential to acknowledge and navigate the challenges accompanying this technological stride. Concerns related to data privacy, bias in algorithms, transparency, diminishing social connections, over-reliance on technology, equity issues, and ethical considerations loom large. As custodians of education, teachers bear the responsibility to thoughtfully and responsibly integrate AI into the learning landscape, ensuring a harmonious balance between technological advancement and ethical educational practices.

    7. Fine Print

    The final issue of Fine Print for 2023 should be in members’ mailboxes very soon, if you haven’t received it already. Here’s a sneak peek at one of the articles: Jo Medlin’s four points of advocacy for adult literacy. Here’s a quote from the article (p.22): “Although we have increasingly been funnelled into funding and tendering systems that do not encourage collaboration, I ask you to share what you know and what you do. We need examples of successful programs and initiatives so that we can present those state and territory governments who are lagging behind with examples of what they could be doing.”

    You can share what you know by contributing an article to Fine Print. Contact us at fineprint@valbec.org.au

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