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2 – 9 July 2023
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Professor Chris Sarra

Professor Chris Sarra

Person of the Year

Professor Chris Sarra, a Goreng Goreng man from Bundaberg, has championed the improvement of Aboriginal educational outcomes throughout Australia for over 20 years.

The youngest of ten children, Chris faced many of the challenges commonly experienced by Indigenous kids at school, motivating him to make a difference.

His Stronger Smarter Institute began in 2006 to improve the way Indigenous education is delivered, without compromising cultural identity.

As Principal of Cherbourg State School in Queensland, Chris’ teaching methods increased enthusiasm for student learning and dramatically improved student engagement, school outcomes and the Aboriginal community’s involvement in their children’s education.

In 2004, Chris was Queenslander of the Year, and in 2010 he was Queensland's Australian of the Year.  He has written two books and has completed a psychology PhD and Masters of Education. He recently accepted a role as Professor of Education at the University of Canberra.

As a leader, scholar, teacher and principal, Professor Sarra advocates that a strong and positive sense of culture and identity should go hand in hand with achieving a good education.