Benjamin Evans

Director of Teaching and Learning, Prince Alfred College

Speaking at


Turning the tanker: a case study in how to rescue an academic programme

Education is a business more susceptible than most to fads, gimmicks, and the influence of those purveyors of snake oil. Using my current School as a case study, I will present our ‘three year plan’ of academic and systemic improvement, now that we have reached the mid-point of ‘year three’. At the beginning of 2016, we undertook to cleanse ourselves of those recently-introduced edu-initiatives that served to hold back the intellectual development of our boys. We have re-introduced an academic management hierarchy, replaced a fragmented curriculum with an overhauled common core, re-introduced examinations, placed an emphasis on extension (not acceleration) and changed our philosophy of teacher recruitment. This talk will focus on the highs, lows and key challenges faced when attempting to make Adelaide great again.


Educated at Durham and Cambridge Universities in the UK, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry. Interested in education to make minds, not careers. Advocate of communal curricula, high expectations and academic extension for all, as well as the genuine transformative power of a rigorous academic education. ‘A man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s a heaven for?’

Twitter: @thingsbehindsun



Avocado teaching

There’s no such thing as a healthy individual foodstuff, but diets can be healthy or unhealthy, and over time, the benefits of one over the other will become apparent. Teaching is similar – individual activities, though they may appear ‘engaging’ on the surface, are merely part of the educational diet. This talk will focus on what makes a healthy academic diet, remembering that a little of what you fancy does you good.