The Australian Education Awards bring together hundreds of education leaders, recognising the star performers in the profession. Across 25 categories, the Australian Education Awards recognise schools, principals, department heads and teachers for their achievements.

The Australian Education Awards conducted a call for nominations from February 2020 - April 2020 and received hundreds of nominations.

This was followed by an intensive research period to verify the nominations and to ensure that those selected as finalists were the most deserving.

The Educator Magazine, said "We have an unparalleled presence in the sector, making the nomination and research process enormously comprehensive".

It is with great pride that we announce that Hastings Secondary College has been selected as finalists in the Australian Education Awards in two categories - Rising Star of the Year and Best STEM Program.

The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony to be held at Doltone House - Darling Island on Friday 6 November 2020.

Rising Star of the Year Lloyd Godson


lloyd godson

This award recognises the most outstanding teacher in a school in Australia who has been an educator for five years or less. When judging this category the following criteria will be considered:

  • Positive impact on students’ learning experiences and outcomes
  • Commitment to professional development and collaboration with colleagues to address student learning needs
  • Engagement with parents and the wider school community
  • Demonstrated commitment to the education profession and potential to become a future school leader

Lloyd Godson is a gifted educator. He is currently in his third year of teaching at Hastings Secondary College Westport Campus. Since joining the College in 2018 Lloyd has been at the forefront of innovation that goes to the centre of future focused teaching and learning. That being the ability to create engaging, relevant learning experiences that can support the positive academic and social growth of every student in Lloyd’s care.

He has also demonstrated the ability to share his learning experiences and techniques with other staff and in doing so upskilling them in engagement and relationship building with the students at Hastings Secondary College. 

He has developed many programs that have allowed students authentic experiences that directly relate to course content or have a positive social impact on other students.

He has enabled a student-developed a Pet Therapy in Schools Program where a number of mainstream students work with special needs students where a therapy dog is the catalyst to the formation of relationships and a sense of wellbeing amongst the participants. 

Lloyd sourced a grant to take Marine Studies students from the college to Lady Elliot Island on a scientific field trip. The trip featured on the 7.30 Report. A majority of the students on the trip had never flown in an aircraft, never been to Queensland nor the Great Barrier Reef. What an experience. One female student who was, prior to the trip, an attendance risk now has university aspirations as a result of Lloyd’s mentorship. 

He was invited to be part of a podcast for innovative teachers that was hosted by Mark Scott the NSW Department of Education Secretary. 

Lloyd has been instrumental in the development of STEM initiatives within the college and with partner primary school as part of the HVCS (Hastings Valley Community of Schools).

One of the outcomes was to get high school students to mentor primary students in STEM experiences and through this process encourage both girls and boys to both adopt and enjoy STEM related opportunities. Lloyd developed a junior STEM team that competed in New Zealand in an Aquabotics competition. The team took out 1st place which entitle them to compete in the USA Competition in 2020. 

During 2019 Lloyd developed and was successful in a community voted grant (80K) to purchase a plastic shredder (Shruder) that will be located at the Westport Campus. It will be able to be accessed by the college and the community with the shredded plastic being on sold to create filament for 3D printing or use in an injecting mould procedure to produce park and garden furniture. A team of students, under Lloyd guidance will administer the operation. 

Lloyd has developed many partnerships within the local Port Macquarie community. In November 2019 a number of his students built a series of cardboard boats which they then competed in in the inaugural Cardboard Boat Regatta which was sponsored by the Rotary Club of Port Macquarie West and the NSW Marine Rescue. In 2020 Lloyd plans to expand the event to include a number of Mid North Coast schools. 

  • Lady Elliot Island Marine Studies field trip/7.30 report
  • Plastics recycling grant. In 2020, WEST will purchase a Shruder (shreds plastics) machine and create a recycling workspace. The Shruder is a dual purpose, compact, industrial shredder and extruder, purpose-built for recycling of used plastics. Students will shred single-use plastic items, which can then either be on-sold to plastic recyclers or made into new products.
  • 1st place in Aquabotics Competition in New Zealand with student team
  • Game changer team
  • STEM initiative with partner primary schools
  • Pet Therapy in school program
  • Mark Scott – Podcast for innovative teachers
  • 7.30 report - “If you're lucky, you may have had a teacher who has helped you see the world differently. For a handful of students from Port Macquarie in NSW, Lloyd Godson is that teacher. He took a school excursion to explore the Great Barrier Reef. And for many of the students the experience was life changing.”
  • Cardboard Boat regatta (Marine Rescue and Rotary of Port Macquarie West)

Lloyd is an inspirational and highly effective and engaging member of the teaching profession. Congratulations Lloyd.

Best STEM Program


Paul King

This award recognises the most outstanding STEM-based project or education program implemented by a school in Australia. When judging this category, the following criteria will be considered:

  • Demonstrated school leadership and support of STEM education
  • Consistently high standards of STEM teaching
  • Staff participation in professional learning and collaboration to improve STEM education
  • Evidence of student engagement and outcomes in the 2019 school year

STEM Academy curriculum was developed and continues to be improved by our exceptional College teaching staff and shared with other public high schools.

This has developed into collaboration with the Hastings valley Community of Schools (partner primary schools) in developing a K-12 STEM Scope and Sequence. Community engagement: SIPS partnership, Bale Engineering, Rotary partnership, P&C BBQ fundraisers, Rotary and parent engagement in FIRST robotics. LEGO Brickfest demonstrations and Bunnings father day stall. State and Federal members visit the STEM spaces: classrooms, robotics and Maker Spaces.

High Standards: STEM Academy curriculum was developed and continues to be improved by our exceptional College teaching staff and shared with other public high schools. This has developed into collaboration with the Hastings valley Community of Schools (partner primary schools) in developing a K-12 STEM Scope and Sequence.

FIRST LEGO League staff and student mentoring across the HVCS primary schools (6) 2/6 primary schools increased to 6/6 involved.   Winners 2019 Regional competition and Judges choice. Runners up 2019 national competition.  FIRST Robotics 2019 Winners Thunder Down Under (23 students, 50% girls) Minor premiers for FIRST Robotics Southern Cross Competition 2019 Aqua robotics New Zealand2019 winner, qualified for the 2020 International Sea Perch Aqua-Robotics competition. Hosted inaugural 2019 Port Macquarie FIRST Lego league

Professional Learning HVCS partnerships, curriculum development and staff mentoring across public schools.

Student Engagement STEM Academy and iSTEM have become some of the most popular courses in the College. STEM Academy has evolved into HASE Hastings Academy of STEM Excellence in partnership with SISP (STEM Industry School Partnerships) Student panel was invited to teach Rotary members about robotics.

Student and staff mentoring across the HVCS primary schools (6) 2/6 primary schools increased to 6/6 involved.

Hastings Secondary College’s Robotic Team (Paul King, Stephen Barnett, Todd Harrison and Andrew Dun)

Hastings Secondary College community is exceptionally proud of our Robotics Team staff consisting of Paul King, Steven Barnett, Andrew Dun and Todd Harrison who have continued to deliver a specialist program to our students. These innovative and passionate teachers have guided and supported our students on a fantastic journey of opportunity that has led to the students competing and succeeding at a regional, national and international level.

The program encourages students to work collaboratively, to problem solve and advance their skills in technology. The robotics program has resulted in closer industrial links with the community and developing a unique set of skills that will be highly sought after by future employers when they leave school.