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After entering the public education awards – information for finalists

Once you have entered the public education awards, find out about the assessment process and what happens next, including the awards ceremony and prizes. 

Finalist selections

When finalists are notified

If you’re selected as a finalist, you’ll be notified by Friday 26 August

You’ll be sent an information pack, so make sure your contact details are correct in your application.

How finalists are selected

The awards have a 2-stage assessment process.

First, all applications are reviewed by a judging panel, consisting of various department employees – principals, directors, executive directors, education directors and past winners – from different locations across the organisation.

The state panel then reviews the shortlisted applicants to select 1 winner and 2 finalists for each category. The state panel is chaired by the Chief Executive, Department for Education and includes award partners from around the state with an interest in education services.

The judges are given a comprehensive judging rubric to ensure a robust application and judging process.

Awards ceremony

Finalists are invited to attend an awards ceremony.

The 2022 Public Education Awards will be held on the evening of Friday 4 November at the Adelaide Convention Centre.

Short films will be shown for each finalist to introduce them and showcase their contributions and achievements. Finalists (and colleagues who applied on behalf of finalists) must be available for filming during late August to mid-September.

The Minister for Education and Chief Executive, Department for Education will present the awards.

All winners and finalists will be highlighted on our honour roll.

Prize money

All winners will receive a trophy and $10,000 prize towards their professional development. 

All finalists will receive a signed certificate and $2,000 prize towards their professional development.

How you’ll receive the prize

The funds will be transferred to your school or office in early 2023. Your school or office is then responsible for managing and acquitting all funds. This includes arranging your spend activities (for example, professional development, domestic and international travel, Temporary Relief Teaching).

How long you have to spend it

Prizes awarded to school or preschool-based winners and finalists must be used by the end of the calendar year following the awards. Winners and finalists from central (corporate) offices must use their funds within the current financial year. Funds not used in these timeframes must be returned to the Public Education Awards program.

What you can spend the prize money on


If you're applying personally, a question addressing what you would spend the prize money on is included in each category. If you're applying on behalf of a colleague, you're not required to answer this question in your application.

Some of our past winners have used the money for training, upskilling or coaching, attending conferences or events. Funds can also be spent on learning resources for your school, education service or community. You’re expected to undertake the specified activity, or something very similar. Any winner wishing to change their professional learning activity must seek permission from their leader or manager and may forfeit their prize if no suitable alternative is found. 


Finalists' prizes will be allocated post-event for an approved professional activity of choice, as negotiated with their line manager.

Provide feedback about the Public Education Awards

Send all feedback and suggestions to PublicEducationAwards [at] sa.gov.au

Each year, a review is conducted of the awards with the intent of making sure they’re as meaningful as possible.

Organisational Development Team

Phone: 8463 4985
Email: PublicEducationAwards [at] sa.gov.au