The George Briscoe Kerferd Oration is an annual, free community event, first held in 2003 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the naming of Beechworth.
The Kerferd Oration brings an eminent speaker to Indigo Shire to challenge our thinking, foster discussion and promote active citizenship.

Peter Hutton will deliver the 2022 Oration, “Australian Education: How did we get here and where are we going?”, on Sunday 31st July, 11am at the George Kerferd Hotel Beechworth and via Livestream.

Kerferd Oration News

LOOKING TO THE FUTURE FOR THE 20TH KERFERD ORATION

PETER HUTTON WILL EXPLORE AUSTRALIAN EDUCATION WITH THE 2022 KERFERD ORATION


This year is the 20th consecutive annual George Briscoe Kerferd Oration. What a very special achievement for our community!

The George Briscoe Kerferd Oration has developed into a unique community event that has strong, regional, state-wide and international following. Even during Covid lockdowns hundreds of people logged in to watch, learn and connect through the Kerferd Oration.

Peter Hutton will deliver the 2022 Oration, “Australian Education: How did we get here and where are we going?”, on Sunday 31st July, 11am at the George Kerferd Hotel Beechworth and via Livestream.

Peter is a maverick, a free radical, a challenger of the status quo. His strength is in transformational insight and supporting educational leaders to build innovative and adaptive cultures in schools. Peter co-founded the Future Schools; a global collaboration of innovators aligned to transform learning communities and co-evolve the future of education. Future Schools now includes a community of over 100 member schools, including ten of the most innovative schools in the world. Peter was the former Principal of Templestowe College, one of Australia’s most innovative schools.

Education has been discussed as a topic for many years within the committee.”, stated chair Jessica Oldmeadow, “Regardless of whether you are currently engaged with the education system or not, how it is delivered and how effective it is has a massive impact in our communities. The Education System is a major part of our lives, economy, and social expectations, starting with those as young as 6 weeks old, in early education settings, through to lifelong learners at U3A. We could hold another 20 years of Orations focused on education alone!

So why now? Covid exposed the Australian community to an alternate way of delivering education and prompted mass re-evaluation of societal values and individual’s priorities. What is ‘essential’ work? Is that what we are preparing our children for? Does our work and education need to be restricted by physical boundaries? Are schools the best places for young people to socialise? Do we value our teachers enough?

As a community, do we simply slip back to the ‘norm’ of what we believe education to be? Or has covid given us an opportunity to explore the possibility for change? That’s the discussion we’re hoping to open with the community at the Oration this year”.

The Kerferd Oration is a free community event, thanks to our sponsors, Indigo Shire Council, La Trobe University, WAW Bank and Quercus Beechworth.

KERFERD ORATION SEEKS NEW ENERGY

IN 2022 THE ANNUAL ORATION WILL CELEBRATE 20 YEARS, BUT THIS MAY BE ITS LAST

Over the last five years the Kerferd Oration committee has worked hard to attract new committee members, using multiple strategies and networks. We have had some success with this, however as with many things over the last two years the ability to maintain momentum and enthusiasm has been challenging. This has meant that the majority of the current committee have given all they feel they can to the Kerferd Oration and it is now time for new energy and vision.

The 2022 Kerferd Oration will be the last one for this existing committee.
We are hopeful that another organisation or committee may continue the Oration in some form, however we will not be placing any expectations on what that might look like.

In short, if you have any interest in ensuring the continuity of the Kerferd Oration, please get in touch.

Why might you like to continue this event?

  • A well respected 20 year long event, that continues to attract 400+ attendees per year
  • Established operational procedures and event management processes
  • Established resources for attracting sponsors and grants
  • A financially secure and sustainable event
  • A supportive hand over with continued access to previous committee members, if desired
  • An event that has measurable and lasting social impact
  • The potential to take the event in a new direction if desired
  • Connection to engaged and proactive George Kerferd descendant’s

If you would like to contact the committee regarding the Kerferd Oration beyond 2022, please email prior to Friday 20 May.


THE 2022 KERFERD ORATION

We have something very special to celebrate: a great achievement.
This year is the 20th consecutive annual George Briscoe Kerferd Oration.

The George Briscoe Kerferd Oration has developed into a unique community event that has strong local, regional and state-wide following. Even during Covid lockdowns hundreds of people logged in to watch, learn and connect through the Kerferd Oration. Something we are very proud of.

During these two decades, we have welcomed many outstanding speakers who have delivered exceptional contributions to the public arena on subjects as diverse as: first nations peoples’ health; research science; and, civic engagement.

This is an important event that not only draws considerable activity to the region but also makes a major contribution to the public discourse in terms of ideas. The spark of ideas directly ignite dissemination and collaboration which are the precursors of future innovation, well-being and wealth. This is evidenced by the direct outcomes of the Oration, such as the establishment of the Beechworth University of the Third Age, as just one example. But, also in ways much harder to fully quantify, by providing an opportunity for people to consider alternative ways to view and live in the community.

To all who have supported, attended and discussed the Kerferd Oration, and to our long standing sponsors of the event, Indigo Shire Council, La Trobe University, WAW Bank and Quercus Beechworth. Thank you

The 20th George Kerferd Oration will be held on Sunday 31st July, 11am at the George Kerferd Hotel Beechworth, delivered by Peter Hutton. Peter is a passionate educationalist who will present his thoughts about the future of education. What will be the ‘norm’ for education in the future is very much up for debate; an important conversation for our community to engage in.

We are pleased that a number of the descendants of George Briscoe Kerferd will be attending to celebrate the 20th Oration, and hope to have a number of past orators join us for this milestone occasion. We hope you will mark the date in your calendar to join us as well. Bookings for the event will be opening soon.