2020 VAPS Presents:

Philosophical Inquiry in the Classroom
FAPSA Advanced Practice

On-Line Professional Learning Workshop
8th, 9th and 10th July 2020
Conducted by the Victorian Association for Philosophy in Schools
Aristidis Galatis, Jill Howells, Janette Poulton, Emmanuel Skoutas, Bonnie Zuidland.
Guest Presenters: Phil Cam and Thomas Wartenberg

The course is designed to support educators who wish to implement Philosophy programs in schools by extending their skills as facilitators of Philosophical Communities of Inquiry.

Completing this course will contribute 18 hours (equivalent) of Professional Learning addressing a number of standards (as listed p.3 below) from the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers towards maintaining Proficient Teacher registration.

Successful applicants will be given the opportunity to consolidate their skills in the facilitation of the philosophical community of inquiry with school students, including ‘tools for navigating the Inquiry pathway and the development of classroom materials. You must successfully complete a written assignment to earn the certification

Prerequisites: This course is open to any educator or academic philosopher who has completed Level 1 Philosophy in Schools training or has an honours degree in Philosophy, AND a minimum of six months regular practical experience teaching philosophy. To prepare for this training, participants will be expected to complete a number of readings prior to commencement and submit a reflective journal.

TASK 1: Development Development of a Matrix for evaluating facilitation of a COI DUE: 10th July
TASK 2: 1,500-word essay on a self-selected philosophical problem DUE: 17th July
TASK 3: Resource development related to the essay DUE: 10th Aug
DAY: On-line over 3 days
TIME: 10:00am – 4:00pm. (with lots of breaks and activities)
Cost: □ Non-Associates $700 □ FAPSA Associates $500 □ Low income $300

2019 FAPSA Mini- Conference

Join us for a One Day Philosophy in Schools conference, hosted by FAPSA and the Institute for Ethics and Society at the University of Notre Dame Australia in Sydney, NSW.

Philosophy in Schools One Day Conference

Join the Federation of Australasian Philosophy in Schools Associations (FAPSA) in a wonderful one-day conference that celebrates teaching and research in philosophy and ethics in the primary and high school classroom! With practical hands-on workshops as well as a couple of presentations, this event is well suited to new or experienced teachers who enjoy critical thinking, ethical deliberation and wish to encourage such thinking skills in their students.

Date: Friday 12 July, 2019

Venue: The University of Notre Dame Australia, Sydney campus

Cost: $120   Early bird tickets $100 prior to May 31 2019.

Register and Payment via Eventbrite:


F.A.P.S.A. Awarded substantial Templeton Grant

On August 8th 2017 FAPSA was notified that its application to the Templeton Foundation for funding had been successful. The grant will fund a project that enables FAPSA to support local associations through grants to individuals and schools as they seek to develop philosophical skills in students through Philosothons. The opportunities for individuals, schools and associations to tap into this funding will be spelt out on this website soon. Click here for the  MediaRelease    Click here for the Philosothon FAPSA TRT Project Summary


A working group has recently put together guidelines and resources for Level One training courses in Australasia. The following links provide all trainers and participants with useful information about what exactly is covered.

FAPSA Level 1 Requirements

FAPSA Level 1 Assessment

FAPSA Level 1 Feedback



A new open-access journal has just been launched entitled Journal of Philosophy in Schools (JPS). The co-editors are Dr Andrew Peterson, senior lecturer in education at The University of South Australia and Dr Laura D’Olimpio, a lecturer in philosophy at The University of Notre Dame Australia. Andrew and Laura had the idea of creating a new journal that brings together the fields of philosophy and education to fill a gap which was once occupied by Critical & Creative Thinking, the official journal of the Federation of Australasian Philosophy in Schools Associations (FAPSA) from 1993 – 2008.

Critical and Creative Thinking (C&CT) folded at a time in which it was difficult to publish hard copies of a journal that aimed its readership in two directions: half of the articles were scholarly and theoretical, aimed at academics, and the other half were pedagogical and practical, aimed at teachers teaching philosophy in the schools. At the FAPSA Conference in 2013, Laura and Andrew proposed re-launching an online open-access research based journal that would be supported by FAPSA and allow international researchers a new Australasian journal in which to publish their articles on philosophy with children (also known as Philosophy for Children, or P4C).

The focus of the journal is research into philosophy with school-aged children. What was once called Philosophy with Children has developed into a sub-discipline of philosophy with its own history, traditions and pedagogy and incorporates philosophical inquiry in the classroom, reflective education and Socratic dialogue through the use of the Community of Inquiry (CoI) methodology. The journal focuses on academic research articles into the pedagogy and practice of philosophy in schools. The journal also reviews new books on philosophy in schools along with new teacher resources for philosophy in schools.

Dr D’Olimpio has said, “it is wonderful to have an open-access journal for philosophy and education in Australasia and I think this will continue to grow as P4C gains more attention globally. Our intended purpose for launching a new journal in Philosophy and Education was to fill the gap where there had once been Critical & Creative Thinking. In moving towards an open access, online journal, The Journal of Philosophy in Schools meets a need for Australasia to be represented in the field of philosophy in schools; a field in which we have committed academics and teachers working and writing, and to keep up the new technology that academics are making use of in a climate of ‘publish or perish’. We wanted to keep access to the journal free, as this fits well with our value of collaborative inquiry.”

In paying homage to the history of FAPSA and C&CT, Volume 1 Issue 1 is a commemoration and critical reflection on what has gone before. The aim of this issue is to start the conversation about philosophy in schools anew and revitalise the reading of seminal articles that were originally published in C&CT to a new and ever-growing, international audience. Andrew and Laura invited authors of selected articles to revise, or add a new introductory note or a reflective comment on their original articles that were published between 1993 and 2006 that were selected to best represent the articles from C&CT. This has resulted in some diversity in the first issue as some of the articles are scholarly and academic, focussed on theory, while others focus more on pedagogy and draw on personal experiences of teaching philosophy in the classroom. A couple of others still are speeches that were presented at conferences and then published as papers. Two seminal articles by P4C founders Mat Lipman and Ann Margaret Sharp have been reprinted as they originally appeared in the early issues of C&CT when these cherished American founders of the P4C movement were supporting the Australian journal. Dr Philip Cam, past president of FAPSA and a key academic involved with Lipman and Sharp who helped pioneer the Lipman method in Australia, has written new Introductions to those seminal articles in order to introduce them to a new audience as the JPS launches its first issue.

Volume 1 Issue 1 of the Journal of Philosophy in Schools has gone live! It may be accessed via:  The Facebook page is: And on Twitter @JournalP4C

The JPS is now seeking articles for Volume 2 Issue 1 to be published in March 2015.


Exciting news from Janette Poulton of VAPS:

We have recently heard that the application  I wrote and submitted on behalf of VAPS  to the Victorian Department of Education and Early Childhood (DEECD) for the Strategic Partnerships Program 2015-2017 was awarded the amount of $130,000.

I quote from the application:

Our purpose is to establish educational centres, to support the introduction of AusVELS’ General Capabilities across Learning Areas and throughout the Victorian community.

Our initial focus is on the Ethical Understanding domain:
·       Understanding ethical concepts and Issues
·       Exploring values, rights and responsibilities
·       Reasoning in decision making and actions

Subsequently we will develop similar resources to support the three remaining General Capabilities.

We intend to establish five strategically placed Capability Hubs, initially to develop and deliver “Teaching Ethical Understanding resources” including Tool Kits, Professional Development Workshops, and Guides for use in Public Places.

The program we have designed will provide teachers with resources and training in the teaching of ethics using Inquiry based pedagogical approaches.  The resources will cultivate a capacity for ethical inquiry, rather than offering an uncritical training in moral values. We maintain that this capacity is achieved through the development of dialogical skills and democratic practices in the safe environment of a community of inquiry.

Thus the resources we develop will be informed by VAPS expertise in Philosophy for Children (P4C) pedagogies, and will be collaboratively developed with outstanding Victorian Pre-service to Lead Teachers, Principals and public Education Officers.
This project may be seen to assist the 2015-17 teachers, but also will offer invaluable resources to Teacher training providers across Victoria.



Kate Kennedy White been awarded the NSW Premiers  Early Childhood Teaching Scholarship – a five week overseas trip to look both at introducing P4C in the Early Childhood Centres (3-5) and also to look at how P4C has been embedded into the pre-service training in Scotland and England. Kate will be visiting a number of centres in the UK, and also Sweden and Norway as well{“type”:”block”,”srcIndex”:1,”srcClientId”:”6545f00f-1ca3-4c2c-8555-430923270e63″,”srcRootClientId”:””} as attending the ICPIC and PLATO conferences in  Vancouver and Seattle.