Piccoli takes on uni role to help disadvantaged students

Former NSW Education Minister Adrian Piccoli goes back to uni. Pic: YouTube


Adrian Piccoli – the dumped NSW Education Minister who famously made a stand against his own party by championing Gonski needs-based school funding – will work with the University of NSW on its programs for disadvantaged students and schools.

Mr Piccoli was controversially dumped as the state’s Education Minister during NSW Premier Gladys Berejikilian’s Cabinet reshuffle in January and replaced with NSW Planning Minister Rob Stokes.

Now the former minister has been appointed an Honorary Professor of Practice by UNSW, which will see him working with the School of Education and Arts and Social Sciences and giving guest lectures on politics and public policy while helping with the university’s suite of education initiatives, particularly those around rural and remote education.

These include:

  • Boosting the number of trainee teaching placements in rural areas
  • A partnership between UNSW and Matraville High School where undergraduate teachers run educational and fun after school workshops and support students academically while gaining valuable teaching experience.
  • ASPIRE, a program that aims to boost the numbers of children going to university in schools where numbers are low

UNSW President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Jacobs said Mr Piccoli had shown great commitment to public education, particularly around improving literacy and numeracy in rural and remote communities, and welcomed him on board.

“His expertise fits perfectly with the focus of our UNSW 2025 Strategy on educational excellence and social engagement. His contribution will be of great value in our efforts to provide the highest quality education, accessible to all parts of society,” Prof Jacobs said.

“I am delighted that Adrian is joining our team at UNSW and I look forward immensely to his input.”

Dean of UNSW Arts and Social Sciences Professor Susan Dodds said UNSW would draw on Mr Piccoli’s practical policy knowledge and longstanding commitment to rural and remote education in the university’s research and teaching.

“We have plans to continue to expand our work with policy makers, schools and communities, and his appointment will help to focus those developments. In addition, Mr Piccoli has agreed to offer some guest lectures to students in courses on politics and public policy, informed by his experience as an MP,” Prof Dodds said.

Mr Piccoli said he was committed to improving the outcomes for students across NSW and Australia.

“This is a great opportunity to continue making a contribution to education in conjunction with one of the finest universities in the country,” he said.


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