Peter Botsman Award 2003

 

Mary Swayne

After completing a Bachelor of Arts and Diploma of Education at the University of Queensland, Mary commenced her teaching career at Bundaberg High School. This was followed with various periods at Woodridge High School and Bremer High School where Mary was Head of Department, English and Acting Senior Mistress. This was followed by some years with the Board of Senior Secondary School Studies involved in various projects associated with the Queensland Core Skills Test. After a period as Education Officer, Mary became Head of English at Oxley Secondary College, a position that she enjoyed for ten years. During this time she also completed a Masters of Educational Studies at the University of Queensland. Students at the University of Queensland and Griffith University then benefited from Mary’s wide experience and knowledge of English in her work as a tutor and sessional lecturer, and as a Project Officer with the Board of Teacher Registration. Mary is currently Head of Department at Kelvin Grove State College.

Throughout her career Mary has been a member of various committees and panels. These include being a District Reviewer on the English Extension Panel, the English State Review Panel including a year as Chair, the English Extension Syllabus Sub-committee of the English Syllabus Advisory Committee for the Junior and Senior English Syllabuses.

Mary has presented at many seminars and training sessions including a number for ETAQ, and has been involved in conference planning. In the past two years Mary has been a member of the ETAQ Inservice Sub-committee that plans and organises events such as the seminar today.
Mary has contributed to the promotion of English in other ways as well. She has served as a judge for many competitions, including the ETAQ, QIEU and Courier Mail Literary Competition.

An account of even some of Mary’s achievements makes it apparent that she is an accomplished teacher who enjoys a high regard professionally. This impressive list reveals a central dimension. Those who have worked with Mary in any capacity see her as an ardent lover of English, a sharing supportive colleague and mentor, and an inspirational, guiding teacher. She is spoken of with great affection and I think this is because the many who do so are returning the affection that Mary has for them.

I talked to Mary recently about her experiences and she told me about the various places she has worked. With the mention of each one her face lit up and those beautiful cabaret eyes (to quote a line from a Ross Clark poem) sparkled. Mary told me how she loved the students, loved the staff, loved the place.

I think it is appropriate that Mary is receiving this prestigious award at a conference titled, The heart of English, because Mary represents both the main connotations of that title. Through her deep knowledge and wide experience she is a part of the Heart of English and her contributions are part of the vital functions that disperse the lifeblood to the English teaching community. The reciprocal affection between Mary and those who work and have worked with her is heartfelt. Like many others, I have been guided by Mary’s wise counsel and soothed by her serenity, and I congratulate her on this well-deserved award.

Upcoming Events

Essential English: Community of Practice 2021

Following on from the success of last year's event for teachers of Essential English, we will be running this event again this year with some modifications. The program is available and registrations are now open. Venue: Deception Bay SHS, Phillip Street, DECEPTION BAY. Registrations will close on Saturday 30 October. Interes...

Category: Seminar
Start Time: 9:00 AM
Date: Saturday 6th November 2021
Venue: Deception Bay SHS
Venue Address: Phillip Parade, DECEPTION BAY
Email Enquiries:  adminofficer@etaq.org.au


Grammar PD term 4

To assist attendees to develop their understandings of grammar in order to fully comprehend and to effectively teach the Australia Curriculum: English (AC:E), a further session will be held on Saturday 20 November at John Paul College.  The flyer gives further details.  Registration will close on 14 November.  ...

Category: Workshop
Start Time: 9:00 AM
Date: Saturday 20th November 2021
Venue: John Paul College
Email Enquiries:  adminofficer@etaq.org.au


View all

English Educator of the week

View all

Blog Feed

Grammar myths

Sep 12 2017
An edited version of the letter below was pu...

Impact on learning

Sep 12 2017
The following letter was submitted to The Au...
Read all

Connect to a great range of people who are passionate about English and have their finger on the pulse.

Be Connected