Theory vs Reality – 50 Years on!

Friday 26th July 2024 PLUS opt in session Saturday 27th July

The Network OOSH Conference is designed to inspire, educate and broaden horizons.

This year’s theme, “Theory vs Reality- 50 years on!” promises to be a full day packed full of thought provoking discussions and practical exploration through a range of speakers and breakout sessions.


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A Gathering Like No Other!

A must for all Leaders and Educators working in the Out of School sector.

Participants will learn from expert Keynote speakers who will deliver insightful and engaging talks and round table discussions. There will be an opportunity to select both practical & leadership breakout sessions allowing for an experiential learning experience and opportunities to connect with other leading experts and practitioners in our OOSH community.

After such a successful conference in 2023, we’re so excited for what this year has to bring to you and your practice. We look forward to seeing you there.


Be apart of and experience a blend of:

  • Hands on practical breakout sessions
  • Key-notes form leading experts
  • Being apart of the collective voice
  • Knowledge sharing with other like minded OOSHies
  • Powerful network opportunities
  • Premium exhibits unveiling the latest resources Motivating key-notes and interactive discussions
  • Latest research trends in research and best practice
  • Empowerment through playful networking breaks and “Gala Gold dinner”
  • Recognition and awards for inspiring OOSHies who are leading trailblazing practice
  • Motivation to inspire you to feel so proud of your work and our OOSH community


50th Anniversary Awards Dinner

Our Gala Dinner is open to everyone, and we look forward to celebrating our 50th Anniversary, recognising OOSHies achievements as we present the OOSHCA Awards.

With a three-course meal, drinks, music and dancing, it’s time to think about your “Glamorous Gold ” attire, and opt in for this not to miss important social event.

Additional tickets can be purchased to bring additional team members not able to attend the conference day!

This will be your opportunity to relax, play and unwind!

Yes, the OOSHCA’s are back!

We all know Educators who go the extra mile, now it’s time to take action and nominate them!  

At Network our vision remains the same: a society that values and celebrates the great work that takes place in Out of School Hours every day across NSW. We want OOSH Educators to feel appreciated, celebrated and proud of the work they do and the difference they make. 

Network’s OOSHCAs aim is to shine a light on those Educators and people who make a profound impact in our OOSH community but often go unrecognised.

Nominate now – we all know people who deserve special recognition!

We are calling for nominations in the following 6 categories:

  1. Judy Finlason – Special Recognition of Lifetime achievement Award
  2. Excellence in OOSH Award – Educators who consistently exceed expectations and go the extra mile.
  3. Unsung Heroes – Individuals who consistently go above and beyond.
  4. OOSH Volunteers Award – Recognising exceptional volunteers.
  5. OOSH Play Award –  Celebrating educators who excel in promoting Article 31.
  6. OOSH Leadership Award – Honouring remarkable individuals in leadership roles.

Nominations close Friday 5th July.

Venue & Accommodation Details

Novotel Sydney Brighton Beach –  2 Princess St, Brighton-Le-Sands NSW 2216

The NOVOTEL – Brighton Beach is conveniently located near Brighton Beach Promenade and Sydney Airport. It has recently been transformed with a beautiful refurbishment, including the enormous pool complex that has been completely rebuilt,  with new luxury cabanas, and several new bars and food and beverage outlets.


We strongly encourage you to book a night stay on Friday! Book early to avoid disappointment.


This is The OOSH Conference’s first time in Brighton Le Sands, and this extraordinary venue will blow your mind, located right on the beach. It will allow for a blend of playfulness, sunrises and sunsets following all your hard work at the conference sessions The venue also allow time for reflection about your new learnings!


Accomodation Special

Book directly with the hotel for a special discounted rate.

Contact: 02 9556 5111 and quote NCA250724.

Standard Run of House Room – $289 per room per night
Bayview Run of House Room – $329 per room per night

(Rates are inclusive of one buffet breakfast in Baygarden Restaurant)

Conference Speakers

Dr Kerrie Buhagiar – Chief Programs Officer at Smiling Mind

Our Kids Count: Supporting Mental Wellbeing to Help our Children Thrive

During this session, Dr Kerrie Buhagiar, will explore key issues and topical discussions relating to children’s mental health and wellbeing. Smiling Mind’s approach to children’s mental fitness skill development will be shared, as well as the importance of focusing on our own mental fitness, as key caregivers in children’s lives.

Angus Gorrie – The Outsiders

Theory Vs. Reality – Taking Playwork Theory and Achieving Relatable and Sustainable Practice

Angus will delve into the topic of Playwork practice as referenced in My Time Our Place. This session will unpack the presenter’s first hand experience of being enamoured by Playwork as a concept, and the barriers, hurdles and perceptions that he faced in delivering these concepts practically in first one, then many play settings. Despite the efforts in reframing what might be seen perceptively as “unintentional”, the rewards are huge and worth striving for.

Watch this space! More speaker announcements coming soon!

2023 OOSH Conference Testimonials