2018-2019 Philosothon Project
- ACT/SA/Qld/Vic/NSW/WA Philosothons
- Australian Capital Territory- The first ACT Philosothon was held on May 8th 2019, at Radford College in Canberra. The event was a great success and provided a sound basis to build on when we visit the ACT in Oct for the 9th Australasian Philosothon
- Victoria- Six new Philosothons were conducted in Victoria in 2019, most were held in Museums or Art Galleries. The Victorian Philosothon was held at Ballarat Grammar and a report on this event can be found below. Also there will be a new regional Philosothon on the Mornington Peninsula.
- Northern Territory. Planning for the first NT Philosothon continues with PD being offered in November and a Philosothon planned to be held at the Museum and Art Gallery of NT.
- New South Wales- Nth Sydney Girls HS hosted thier second NSW Philsoothon in 2018. During the reporting period a new Philosothon has been started up in Armadale, and Orange. These are in regional NSW.
- South Australia Prince Alfred College will have hosted their third SA Philosothon this year with over 20 SA schools participating. Seymour College has agreed to host the 2020 SA Philosothon.
- Western Australia- Trinity College hosted the 2019 WA Philosothon. Grant funding has been provided to Geographe Bay Primary school, Busselton to start up a Junior School Philosothon there. Also, Georgiana Molloy Anglican School will be hosting a Philosothon in the South West of WA later in 2019.
- Queensland- UQ continues to host the Brisbane Philosothon and Cavandish Rd SHS hosts a Philosothon for Junior school students. During the reporting period a new Philosothon has started up in Bundaberg, north of Brisbane at Bundaberg Christian College in Qld
- Tasmania- The first Tasmanian Philosothon was held at Guildford Young College in 2018.
- New Zealand- Last year Waikato Diocesan School hosted the first Philosothon in NZ. A new Philosothon was held at St Paul’s College on the North Island.
- Newsletters, Publicity and Promotion of Philosothons
- Planning for Australasian Philosothon
- Resource Development
New resources have been developed as a result of the grant funding. We approached several people and some excellent age appropriate resources have been developed during the first eight months. Attached to this report is one example of a resource that has been developed.
An extensive piece of research was done on the 2018 Australasian Philosothon. The TRT funding provided the funding for this research done by Dr Rachel Buchanan at Newcastle University. This research was helpful for forward planning. Rather than copy the document here I have provided a link below to this research; http://philosothon.org/AustralasianPhilosothonReportBuchanan.pdf
- Manuals & Publications Development
Manuals have been revised and produced for Students, Organizing Teachers and Judges. Regional Philosothon manuals have also been redeveloped. Click here for the link.
- Web and Software development
One exciting new initiative which was funded by the Project was the development of software which can be used to send out invitations, gathering information, co-ordinating students, facilitators and judges, scoring and feedback. This was trialled at the 2018 Australasian Philosothon and will be rolled out in 2019.
- Office Established
The Philosothon Project Office has offered an effective means of production and communication over the past year and has been efficient in the use of its small monthly allocation.
- Procedures reworked for subsidies to remote schools and New Philosothons
- Report to FAPSA and Templeton Foundation
Financial reports have been made to FAPSA every two months. Expenses have been measured against each Budget Expenditure item. Also a report was recently presented the FAPSA AGM.
- Facilitators Training Session
Teachers, judges and Phd Philosophy students have been offered subsidies for Professional development opportunities, to date. (See list below)
- Sponsorship of Remote Schools
A little bit of money continues to go a long way already with many new Philosothons starting up in regional and remote Australia. Armadale, Orange, Dubbo, Albany, Philip Island, Mornington Peninsula and Cairns are all in regional parts of Australasia. Reports have indicated a great deal of satisfaction from those involved. Sue Paff continues to offer schools in regional areas a great deal of support and expertise as they start up Philosothons.
- Ongoing Sponsorship (Initial Enquiries)
We are exploring options with the TRT for ongoing grant support in 2020-24.
- Publication of Resources
All resources have been placed online for participants and stakeholders. The newsletters have provided a wonderful way of distributing publicity.
- NT Philosothon Project
- Meetings with Stakeholders
The Project Manager has travelled for meetings extensively around Australasia over the past twelve months for meetings with stakeholders. He has met with the FAPSA Philosothon Executive team monthly to report on developments.
- Attendance at International Conference
The Project Manager delivered a paper entitled “Old Turkey Tom & Establishing a Philosophical Community of Inquiry for Aboriginal Students.” And the title of the conference was: Educational possibilities brewed with place, people and philosophy.
St Paul’s Collegiate School this year. The event expanded to 7 schools this year, involving nearly 70 students!
School participating were:
St Paul’s Collegiate School
Waikato Diocesan School for Girls
Hamilton Boys High School
Hamilton Girls High School
Hilcrest High School
Sacred Heart High School
Tauhara College, Taupo.
The results were as follows:
Best Junior Performance – Cooper Jones, Waikato Diocesan School for Girls
Best Senior Performance – Stella Slomp, Hamilton Girls’ High School
Best school Performance – Hamilton Girl’s High School.
On Friday, 3 schools from Dubbo and Orange came to Kinross Wolaroi School for the inaugural Central West Philosothon. 3 schools out of 10 invited schools from Parkes, Forbes, Dubbo, Orange and Bathurst regions was a good turnout considering many schools were unfamiliar with the event.
The 3 schools were St John College Dubbo, Orange Anglican Grammar School and James Sheahan Catholic High School. With 2 teams from SJC and KWS, it meant an attendance of 48 students.
New England Regional Philosothon 2019 Report
Held: Wednesday June 26th 2019
On Wednesday June the 26th, four schools from the Armidale region, took part in the inaugural New England Regional Philosothon. These schools were – The Armidale School, Armidale Secondary College, O’Connor Catholic College and PLC Armidale. In total 64 students taking part.
The New England Regional Philosothon was hosted by The Armidale School and held in two large spaces which included partitioned areas in the school Memorial Hall, allowing for the Community of Inquiry (COI) sessions and another room with seating for parents, teachers and students to take part in introductory and Fast Philosophy workshops. Sue Paff had previously visited all schools taking part to ensure they were familiar with ‘what is Philosophy” and to set up practice opportunities before the day to familiarise the students with the COI format. Information was sent to all schools prior to the event with the stimulus material, which assisted students to prepare.
Judges from the University of New England school of Philosophy, joined experienced judges from the Northern NSW Philosothon at the New England event, offering sound and encouraging feedback.
The following topics were explored on the day:
1.Where is my mind?
2.Should everyone be treated equally?
4.Big Bang Cosmology and the Existence of God
5.Are our memories reliable?
It was a long and highly enjoyable and productive day beginning at 9am and finishing at 7pm with speed philosophy, moral dilemmas and finally awards
Another wonderful VAPS Secondary Philosothon took place on Tuesday 13th Aug at Wesley College. ACGrayling began the evening with "A Letter to a Young Philosopher" written especially for the occasion, and presented a signed framed version to the winning student Max as the finale.
WINNING SCHOOLS as per judges
1. Wesley College - Ben Reeves
2. Menton Grammar School - Hayley Lewkowicz
3. Loreto College - Peter Foord
1. FOR OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTIONS: Students used an app to vote for one outstanding contribution after each round. (they referenced the speaker)
Mila Lawson was most often referenced.