restore, reflect and refocus

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March 21st – March 23rd 2021 | Blue Mountains, NSW Australia

In 2021 the Forum will be slower-paced, giving you more time for reconnecting and building relationships. We will be hearing more from YOU, and giving more opportunity for shared learning.

This is also the perfect opportunity for service operating in metropolitan and regional areas to show their support for those in rural and remote areas.

Come along to the Forum to share ideas and experiences with those who have experienced prolonged hardship during drought, bushfire, flood and COVID-19.

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Covid Safe Event


Along with all Australians, those working in the Early Childhood Sector have recently found themselves dealing with significant change and uncertainty. Take some time to reflect on what you do well, and share your experiences.


Take a breath, and top up your energy and enthusiasm through discussion, networking and sharing.


Set goals and plans to continue your successes as you move forward into 2021.


Highlight Speakers

Keynote Speaker and Round Table – Minister Sarah Mitchell

Sarah was appointed Minister for Early Childhood Education, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and Assistant Minister for Education in January 2017. Prior to January, Sarah was the Parliamentary Secretary for Regional and Rural Health and Western NSW.

Elected at the age of 28 in 2011, Sarah became the youngest member ever elected to the Legislative Council. Sarah has a Bachelor of Arts majoring in politics, international relations and sociology from the University of New South Wales.

Anderson and for the Federal Member for Parkes, Mark Coulton. Sarah is a Gunnedah local, where she currently resides with her husband and two daughters.

Keynote Speaker – Kristal Kinsela

Kristal is a proud Aboriginal woman, a descendant of both the Jawoyn and Wiradjuri nations.  Kristal has more than 16 years’ experience in education and training, organisational and workforce development, and supplier diversity working across Government, Corporate and Not-for-Profit sectors.

Kristal is a well-known Aboriginal businesswoman and entrepreneur, she has worked nationally across Australia and is highly regarded as a skilled facilitator, expert in stakeholder engagement and project manager.

Kristal is passionate about creating lasting pathways and growing the capabilities of Indigenous businesses and individuals. In 2019, Kristal was recognised as the Indigenous Defence Leader of the Year, and 2019 AFR 100 Women of Influence list, recognised for her outstanding contribution in working with Indigenous communities, Indigenous businesses, leaders and women across Australia.

Keynote Speaker – Rachael Robertson

Rachael spent 12 months in the Antarctic, where she successfully led the 58th Australian National Antarctic Research Expedition to Davis Station. She is only the second female to ever lead a team at the Station and one of the youngest ever leaders.

This leadership role is a truly unique experience. Antarctica in winter is totally inaccessible which means once the last ship leaves at the end of February, no one can leave the base under any circumstance until the ship returns in November. It’s a 24 hour a day, every day of the year, leadership role.

Rachael was responsible for all aspects of life on the Station, from the safety and welfare of over 120 expeditioners in Summer, to the delivery of the Australian Government’s $30mn science program. In any circumstance, this would be a tough role, but for a female in a male dominated environment, it was also a very challenging one!

Dinner Speaker – Wendy Harmer

In a career spanning four decades, Wendy has found success as a journalist, columnist, radio broadcaster, TV host, author, playwright and comic performer.

A former political journalist, Wendy ran away with the circus in the 80s and forged a career in comedy at the Edinburgh Festival, London’s West End and on stages in Ireland, the US and all over Australia.

Wendy was a pioneer for women in media as MC of ABC TV’s the Big Gig and as the headliner in 2Day FM’s Morning Crew.

She is the author of some 30 fiction books for children, teens and women. She has also written plays, an opera libretto and has been a prolific columnist for many magazines and newspapers, most notably as Editor In Chief of her own site for women, The Hoopla.

A forum for Leaders, Educators and Administrators

The Rural and Remote Forum provides a unique information, networking and sharing opportunity for the early childhood sector.

Leaders and Managers

Directors, Educational Leaders , Managers and Committee Members have taken on the vital role of navigating services through crises and trauma. Effective, resilient leaders are prepared to listen, learn, accept and adapt. Hear from experts on how to build on your leadership skills, and share how you have led your team to achieve positive outcomes.


Educators are often the first point of contact for staff, families and children who have questions about what is happening and how they will be affected. During times of crises and trauma, it’s important to stop for some reflection and self-care. Take some time for yourself, share your experiences, and be inspired by our guest speakers.


We know that particularly in rural and remote areas Administrators have wide and varied responsibilities, and these have been extended even further during recent times with natural disasters and the COVID-19 pandemic. Take to opportunity to share your wins and benefit from the shared knowledge of people facing the same challenges.

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30 Final Tickets have now been released.
Our numbers are capped to ensure a COVID safe event that is inline government health regulations.

Our Sponsors


The 2021 CCSA Rural and Remote Forum is sponsored by the NSW Department of Education to support the professional development of Early Childhood Educators operating in rural and remote areas.


The 2021 CCSA Rural and Remote Forum is sponsored by the Department of Education, Skills and Employment to support the professional development of Early Childhood Educators operating in rural and remote areas.

Exhibitor and Industry Sponsors

The Location

Fairmont Resort & Spa
1 Sublime Point Road Leura
New South Wales

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Countdown to the Rural and Remote Forum