The ‘Doing School Differently’ conference is the pinnacle event hosted by AAFIE. The conference is focused on bringing together a range of participants from across education and academia, social work, psychology, wellbeing, community, family, youth services and Indigenous and culturally and linguistically diverse specific practitioners to discuss the spectrum of flexible and alternative learning options for young people who don’t always find engagement with mainstream systems easy.

This popular Biennial Conference has been attended by over 1000 delegates in 2016 and 2018, and has delivered a range of offerings, including Masterclasses, Keynote presentations, Workshops, Conference Breakfast Presentations, Youth Streams, Yarning Circles and Indigenous Education focused sessions presented by a diverse group of local and international speakers.

While the focus of the conference is squared clearly on showcasing how we ‘Do School Differently’ a number of other Practice, Research and Policy themes surface in presentations and workshops including  – teaching and learning, pathways and transitions, wellbeing, young people and student experience, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Professional Learning.

Conference Programs from previous years can be found here:

DSD16-Program – FINAL

DSD18 Program -FINAL

Key Highlights

  • Youth Stream for young people supported by flexible and alternative education programs
  • Local and International Keynote speakers
  • A showcase of innovative interdisciplinary approaches
  • Dedicated Yarning Space and embedding of indigenous perspectives
  • Masterclasses, allowing for the practical application of theoretical learnings

From DSD Conference delegates

“Superb quality – content and presentations” 

“Great mix of content and styles of presenters. The student perspectives were exceptional” 

“The opportunity to network and learn from others was fantastic! Doing school traditionally does not work for so many” 

“Loved that the conference is about doing school differently. That alone was a huge benefit and opportunity. It’s a unique and thought provoking conference option” 

“The collaborative format of the sessions allowed for many different opinions and thoughts to be shared in an open and accepting environment” 

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