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Keeping children safe from bullying conference

A free one-day conference and workshop about keeping children safe in schools and the community.

A community approach to reducing the impact of bullying on children and young people will be the focus of a conference on 5 November and a consultation workshop on 6 November.

Conference, 5 November 2018

Register today to hear from leading Australian and international researchers who will present evidence on:

  • the global context of bullying
  • supporting children at increased risk of bullying
  • bullying and mental health
  • social media and cyberbullying
  • legal responses to bullying
  • school and community responses to bullying.

The conference will focus on keeping children safe at school and in the community.

Download the conference program update.

Who this conference is for

The conference is for educators and people who work with children and families in government, non-government, not-for-profit and community organisations.

Consultation workshop, 6 November 2018

Selected attendees will have the opportunity to contribute to government responses about keeping children safe.

You can nominate yourself for the workshop when you register for the conference.

When and where

Date: Monday 5 November 2018
Time: 9.00am to 5.00pm
Location: Adelaide Convention Centre
Cost: free

The 6 November consultation workshop will be at the same location.

Register now to attend in person

Complete the registration to attend the conference.

When you register you can nominate yourself for the consultation workshop. We will let you know if you are selected to attend.

Not able to attend?

If you can’t make it on the day, you can:

About the researchers and presenters

Professor Les Butler, Queensland University of Technology (QUT)

Des Butler is a Professor of Law at the Faculty of Law, Queensland University of Technology (QUT), where he served as Assistant Dean, Research (1997-2002). He was awarded his doctorate in 1996 for his thesis on liability for psychiatric injury, and is the author or co-author of 24 books and numerous articles on topics including liability for psychiatric injury (including cyberbullying), schools and the law, privacy law, media and entertainment law and contract law. 

He is recognised as a leading national expert in defamation law and privacy law, and is recognised internationally for his work regarding the nature and scope of the legal duty of care, civil liability for failure to prevent harassment, bullying and cyberbullying, and liability for causing psychiatric injury. He has been a Chief Investigator on Australian Research Council grants concerning teachers’ duties to report suspected child abuse and (with his AUARA colleagues) cyberbullying. 

He has made submissions to and testified before recent Federal Government inquiries concerning the privacy implications of both drones and automated vehicles. Des is also an Australian Learning and Teaching Fellow and a Senior Fellow of the United Kingdom Higher Education Academy and in 2015 was honoured by being named the David Gardiner QUT Teacher of the Year.

Dr Marilyn Campbell, Queensland University of Technology (QUT)

Dr Marilyn Campbell is a Professor at the Queensland University of Technology. She is a registered teacher and a registered psychologist. Previous to this Marilyn supervised school counsellors and has worked in infants, primary and secondary schools as a teacher, teacher-librarian and school counsellor. Her main clinical and research interests are the prevention and intervention of anxiety disorders in young people and the effects of bullying, especially cyberbullying in schools. 

Helen Connolly, South Australian Commissioner for Children and Young People

Helen Connolly became South Australia’s first Commissioner for Children and Young People in April 2017. The position was established under the Children and Young People (Oversight and Advocacy Bodies) Act 2016. The Commissioner promotes and advocates for the rights, development and wellbeing of all children and young people in South Australia, with a special focus to engage with and listen to children who aren’t usually heard.

Helen has 30 years’ experience as a leader in human services. Throughout her career, Helen has taken an active advocacy role on the main policy issues that impact on the wellbeing of Australian families and children, with a strong focus on early intervention and prevention strategies.

Professor Wendy Craig, Queens University Ontario, Canada

A Queen’s psychology professor and scientific co-director (with Dr. Debra Pepler) of Promoting Relationships and Eliminating Violence Network (PREVNet). Research about the causes of bullying and aggression, and develop and disseminate programs to eliminate violence and promote healthy relationships.

Professor Dorothy Espelage, University of Florida, United States of America

Dorothy L. Espelage, Ph.D., is Professor of Psychology at the University of Florida. She is the recipient of the APA Lifetime Achievement Award in Prevention Science and the 2016 APA Award for Distinguished Contributions to Research in Public Policy, and is a Fellow of APS, APA, and AERA.  She was just elected to the National Academy of Education. She earned her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Indiana University in 1997.

Over the last 22 years, she has authored over 200 peer- reviewed articles, six edited books, and 70 chapters on bullying, homophobic teasing, sexual harassment, dating violence, and gang violence. Her research focuses on translating empirical findings into prevention and intervention programming and she has secured over twelve million dollars of external funding. She advises members of Congress and Senate on bully prevention legislation. She conducts regular webinars for CDC, NIH, and NIJ to disseminate research. 

She authored a 2011 White House Brief on bullying among LGBTQ youth and attended the White House Conference in 2011, and has been a consultant on the stopbullying.gov website and consultant to the National Anti-bullying Campaign, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). 

She has presented multiple times at the Federal Partnership to End Bullying Summit and Conference. She is a consultant to the National Institutes of Health Pathways to Prevention Initiative to address bullying and youth suicide. Dr. Espelage has appeared on many television news and talk shows and has been quoted in the national print press.

Dr Lesley-anne Ey, University of South Australia

Dr Lesley-anne Ey lectures in Educational Psychology and Child Protection at the University of South Australia in the Bachelor and Master of Teaching program. Before undertaking her PhD she taught in Preschools and Primary schools across a variety of government and independent sectors.  

Her research revolves around, young children’s understanding of bullying and early childhood bullying education, the impacts of media on children’s healthy development, children's problematic sexual behaviours, and child protection issues with the aim to support teachers and inform curriculum.  

She is interested in supporting the wellbeing of children and educators and is a great advocate for placing children's voice at the center of her research. Lesley-anne is also an affiliate with the Australian Centre for Child Protection (ACCP).

Sue Gabor, Commissioner Office of the eSafety Commission

Sue Gabor currently leads the Cyberbullying and Cyber Abuse team at the Office of the eSafety Commissioner. Under this initiative she oversees a team of investigators who assess and resolve reports of serious cyberbullying affecting young people.

Prior to her current role, Sue helped establish two other initiatives at the Office: the image-based abuse program which helps with removal of intimate images that have been shared online without consent, and the eSafetyWomen program for women at risk of experiencing technology-facilitated abuse. Sue worked on broadcasting investigations, media control and content quota in previous roles with the Australian Communications and Media Authority. She was a lawyer in a previous life.

Before joining government, Sue worked in community legal centres and as an in-house lawyer.

Professor Lelia Green, Edith Cowan University

Professor of Communications (since 2005), School of Arts and Humanities, Edith Cowan University. Lelia’s research expertise centers on the risks and opportunities impacting young people online. Her particular focus has been on 9-16 year olds, and she has served on the International Advisory Panel of the EU Kids Online project, or as an Associate Researcher with the project, since its start in 2006.

Additionally, Lelia’s co-Chief Investigator role on an extended study on the internet in Australian family life has been funded by the Australian Research Council since 2002 (2002-4: family internet – families with school aged children; 2008-16: risk and representation of young people online 9 to 16 years old; 2011-13: parents or peers 11 to 17 years old; 2015-17: toddlers and tablets 0-5 years old).

As a co-Chief Investigator of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation, Lelia led the Risk and Representation area which included advisory group participation on work by centre colleagues (Kath Albury and Paul Byron) on sexting, and on the experiences of same-sex attracted young people.

Since 2014 Lelia has conducted professional development training for the Australian Medical Association Youth Friendly Doctors network. She has sole-authored two books Communication, Technology and Society (2002, Sage), and The Internet (2010, Berg) and co-edited the forthcoming Narratives in Research and Interventions on Cyberbullying among Young People (Springer, 2019) and is the author or co-author of over 150 book chapters, peer-reviewed journal articles or fully-published refereed conference papers.

Information on Lelia’s recent publications and grants.

Associate Professor John Guenther, Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education, Darwin

John is the Research Leader Education and Training, with Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education, based in Darwin, Northern Territory. Over the last 15 years John has conducted research and evaluation projects in remote Aboriginal community contexts, covering all states and territories of Australia. While his work has focused mainly on learning, the intersections between training and education with health, wellbeing, traditional knowledge systems, economic, natural resource management, mining and a range of social issues, feature in his work.

John’s research expertise extends from an array of practical qualitative and quantitative methodologies for research and evaluation, through to a range of theoretical and philosophical perspectives. He is interested in the translation of empirical evidence to policy and practice settings.

Professor Neil Humphrey, University of Manchester, United Kingdom

Neil Humphrey is Professor of Psychology of Education and Head of the Manchester Institute of Education at the University of Manchester, UK. His research focuses on children’s mental health, social and emotional learning, and special educational needs (in particular, autism spectrum conditions, ASC).  

In relation to the latter, Neil’s research has primarily focused on inclusion of children and young people with ASC, and related issues such as bullying and mental health. He is currently a co-investigator in the PACT-G trial, led by Professor Jonathan Green, which is testing the efficacy of a therapeutic approach to improve the social communication of children with autism.  

Neil was lead editor and author of Autism and education, published by Sage as part of their Major Works series.

Matthew Keeley, University of New South Wales

Director, National Children’s and Youth Law Centre (NCYLC) at UNSW Law; LLB, Grad Dip. Comm. A children’s, disability, human rights and human services lawyer, legal practice manager and researcher, his expertise includes child protection, family violence, technology-enabled abuse, family law, administrative law including privacy law, comparative children’s laws, law reform and the delivery of innovative legal services. 

Matthew is an experienced research leader and Co-Investigator (with SPRC). His research addresses social policy contexts in which the human and legal rights of children and families are impacted.

Matthew spent his early career as a lawyer and manager across private, government and non-governmental legal practices and developed early specialities in human services and disability law. Prior to his role at NCYLC, Matthew was Director of Legal Services at the then NSW Department of Ageing, Disability and Home Care.

Matthew has knowledge of state, territory and commonwealth laws and programs in a number of areas, including service delivery, domestic violence, sexual assault, information sharing, and privacy, making him a key asset to the team.

Matthew has worked on a number of consulting projects. Two recent projects completed with Ilan and Shona at SPRC are: Information Sharing (for NSW Department of Premier and Cabinet) and Cyberbullying (for Australian Government, Department of Communications).

Matthew has researched and been published in the field of information sharing within protective frameworks, forced marriage and technology-facilitated abuse, amongst other issues.

Trinh Mai, Department for Education

Trinh has been working with children, young people and their families in public service roles for almost two decades. With degrees in Behavioural Science, Social Work and Law, Trinh has applied a cross-disciplinary lens to working with children and their families, and shaping the systems that increase their wellbeing.

Trinh has worked in the areas of child protection, family  law, child deaths and serious injuries, complaints resolution and complex behaviour. She is currently an Assistant Director in the Engagement and Wellbeing Directorate, overseeing behaviour policy and program support for children in public education.  

Associate Professor Damien Riggs, Flinders University

Damien Riggs is an Associate Professor in social work at Flinders University, an Australian Research Council Future Fellow, and a psychotherapist in private practice specialising in working with transgender young people. He is the author of over 200 publications on gender, family, and mental health, including (with Clare Bartholomaeus) Transgender People and Education (Palgrave, 2017). 

Professor Rick Sarre, University of South Australia

Professor Rick Sarre is Adjunct Professor of Law and Criminal Justice at the School of Law, University of South Australia. He was head of the School of Law and Legal Practice for 6 years. He served as Chair of Academic Board of UniSA for 6 years and was on UniSA Council for that period. Professor Sarre has been writing on restorative justice for 20 years, and was co-author of Langos, C and Sarre R, ‘Responding to Cyberbullying: The Case for Family Conferencing, Deakin Law Review 20 (2), pp 279-299, 2015

Professor Grace Skrzypiec, Flinders University

Grace Skrzypiec (PhD) is a Senior Lecturer in Research Methods and Statistics in the College of Education, Psychology and Social Work at Flinders University Adelaide, Australia. She is a psychologist and trained secondary teacher as well as Director of the Student Wellbeing and Prevention of Violence (SWAPv) research centre, and President of the International Observatory on School Climate and Violence Prevention. 

Her background includes research on adolescent health with CSIRO and with adolescent offenders at the Office of Crime Statistics and Research (OCSAR) in South Australia. Dr Skrzypiec was the recipient of the 2014 Vice-Chancellor's Award for Early Career Researchers in recognition of outstanding contributions to excellence in research. She is the author of 31 refereed papers, 13 book chapters and 5 books.

Professor Phillip Slee, Flinders University

Phillip Slee is a Professor in Human Development, School of Education, Flinders University, Adelaide. Phillip is a trained teacher and registered psychologist. Phillip’s research interests include, child and adolescent mental health, childhood bullying/aggression. Phillip’s particular interest is in the practical and policy implications of his research.

Phillip has presented nationally and internationally in workshops and lectures. Phillip is the Director of the Flinders Centre for ‘Student Wellbeing & Prevention of Violence’ (SWAPv). Phillip’s publications include over 100 refereed papers, 25 book chapters and 15 books including ‘Child Development Theories and critical Perspectives’.

Dr Barbara Spears, University of South Australia

Dr Barbara Spears is Associate Professor in Education, at the University of South Australia. She is recognised nationally and internationally for work on youth/student voice, cyber/bullying, sexting, mental health, wellbeing, and the role of technology in young people’s social relationships. She is a founding member and inaugural Chair of AUARA: the Australian Universities Anti-Bullying Research Alliance. 

With a particular interest in pre-service teacher education; knowledge mobilisation and the translation of research to policy and practice, she has led: the review of the National Safe Schools Framework; A Public Health Approach to Sexting; Youth Exposure to and Management of Cyber-Bullying Incidents in Australia; and the five year Safe and Well Online Study: exploring the use of technology to support mental health (Young and Well CRC). She has published widely, including: books; peer reviewed chapters and journal articles; and commissioned reports to advise government.  http://people.unisa.edu.au/Barbara.Spears 

Penny Wright, South Australian Guardian for Children and Young People

Penny is the South Australian Guardian for Children and Young People, the Training Centre Visitor and the Child and Young Person’s Visitor. In these roles, Penny’s mandate is to promote the interests and rights of children and young people in state care and those who are detained in the Adelaide Youth Training Centre. These are the most vulnerable citizens of South Australia and many of them experience bullying – both from other children and young people – and adults.

Penny is a lawyer by training and has previously worked as a solicitor, lecturer, mediator in child dispute resolution and a Tribunal Member. Her work on the Guardianship Board and later as a South Australian Senator (between 2011 and 2015) enabled her to see firsthand some of the toxic effects of bullying. Penny chaired the Senate’s Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee for four years and was an inaugural member of the Joint Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights.

Penny cares deeply about our community being a place where every person can live safely and well, have the chance to reach their full potential and feel proud of who they are. 


Engagement and wellbeing – keeping safe

Phone8207 2491
Email: education.keepingsafe [at] sa.gov.au