Learning specialists

The learning specialist position is a career pathway for highly skilled teachers who want to stay in the classroom and work with other teachers to improve their practice.

About learning specialists

Learning specialists:

  • are highly skilled classroom practitioners who continue to spend most of their time in the classroom
  • build excellence in teaching and learning within the teaching service
  • support the learning and development of colleagues and are comfortable in demonstrating a wide range of teaching strategies, building excellence and leading change
  • use inquiry, evidence-based teaching strategies and evaluate their impact on student learning
  • have deep knowledge and expertise in high quality teaching and learning
  • have a range of responsibilities as per schedule 2 of the Victorian government schools agreement (VGSA) 2017.

Professional learning opportunities

Learning specialists can access professional learning through the Bastow Institute of Educational Leadership.

The core course and six electives cover leadership capabilities to:

  • stimulate and motivate teachers
  • embrace new ideas
  • benefit from a culture of collaboration.

The seven areas of focus for capability building are:

  • leading excellence in classroom practice
  • teaching practice
  • instructional leadership
  • self leadership
  • leading professional learning
  • data literacy
  • professional conversations (Open-to-LearningTM Leadership)

Tools for learning specialists

A range of pedagogical resources are available to support learning specialists. These resources can be useful reference points for future planning and improvement of teaching practice:

In this video, education expert Mary Jean Gallagher talks about building trust and respect in your relationships with other teachers:

Case studies

Canterbury Girls Secondary College shares its vision for the learning specialist role, the focus of the role and how it forms part of the school leadership. The learning specialist focuses solely on the classroom, engages with teachers in peer observation and invites others to visit the classroom. This video provides the perspectives of the principal, learning specialist and a classroom teacher.


Peter Barbadonis, Learning Specialist at Canterbury Girls Secondary College, explains why he was drawn to the role and describes his plans to support Canterbury Girls' Secondary College to improve outcomes for teachers and students.


Contact us

For further information about the learning specialist role, email professional.practice@edumail.vic.gov.au